Sunday, January 29, 2012

Shop ‘Till You Drop

Purchasing Christmas and birthday gifts hasn’t always been easy or fun for me.  Even when invited to showers and weddings where gift ideas demands are spelled out for you on the registry, I still seek out the nearest sales person to help me out. 

Now if it’s a gift FOR me…FROM me?   I prefer to do my personal shopping alone.  I don’t want some 20-something, 90-pound sales clerk barging in the dressing room door telling me I look fab amazing in an outfit that is clearly not me.   I prefer my privacy when trying on clothes.

I used to drag my former husband and he’d sit while I tried on endless ensembles.  He too, thought they all looked great, but I soon discovered that if I wanted a real, sometimes-disappointing-but-true opinion, I would ask my daughter.

I try to get the right gifts, and I always include the gift-receipt with the present just in case the gift doesn’t fit or it’s not to their liking.

“Just give ‘em money,” is what I usually hear from the people around me.  But that’s no fun!  Unless it’s from a wealthy stranger with money to spare and no strings attached, I’d much rather receive a small personal gift that took at least a “little” thought.

It’s now one month after Christmas and I am so pleased (without sales help) with a gift I purchased on-line for a couple of my oldest grandchildren.  They are just barely 6 and I am amazed at what the right gift can inspire!  What they are learning is amazing!

A couple of week ago I received a phone call from my kindergarten grandson.  The conversation went like this:
           Grandson:  Hellooooo, grannnnndma?
           Me:    Hi, Drewey!  What are you doing?
           Grandson:  (sounding worried) Grannndma?  Why did Harry S.
                                Truman drop the bomb?
           Me:  ahhhh…well…ahhh… war is a terrible thing, and
                     dropping the bomb helped end the war.
           Grandson:  Do you think that Harry S. Truman made the
                                correct choice to drop the bomb?
            Me:  ahhh...well.  Lot's of people were hurt and two cities
                     were completely ruined which is a very bad thing, but it
                     DID put an end to the war.

The President's Game from Lillian Vernon on line.
I was stunned by this kindergartener’s insight.  Not only is he learning by memorizing the past 45 Presidents (is it 45?  I’ll have to ask him), but he UNDERSTANDS so much about them, their wives, their Vice Presidents, and interesting facts that I am learning right along with him.    

He even understands the time-line for the past 200 years and relates the years to, for instance, me and the man who was president when I was born (Harry S. Truman).  I thought it was Eisenhower…but what do I know!

Even when he doesn’t have his “ Presidents’ game” with him (which is rare) and he’s busy playing “normal” 6-year-old-boy things (sports, tackling his brother), every couple hours or so he’s asking questions about the presidents……or trying to trick me……which isn’t too difficult. 

So now we play a quasi-Jeopardy where HE’s Alex Trebek and I am the contestant.   He just loves to give me that BEEEEEEEEEEEP sound for the wrong answer.

Next time you purchase a gift, give it a little thought.  You could change someone’s life!   BEEEEEP!


  1. Oh Joyce, This was perfect!!! I suffer the same way when I shop. I always save all my receipts and give a gift receipt. And my grandson calls me and we video chat and play HIS version of Family Feud. Of course he always wins! Loved your blog.

  2. Great idea for a grandchild!


  3. Thanks, Sue and Marianne, for your comments. Besides the Presidents game, there are the same type of games for the Planets, Music and Animals. Quite Educational and not too expensive! Happy Shopping.


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