Monday, December 07, 2009

Santa Shife needs help


OK I don't want to end up like the guy pictured above so I am reaching out to all of you wonderful bloggers who happen to stop by and check out this sweet blog o' mine. Sorry I just felt I needed a Guns 'N' Roses reference to really legitimize this post. Anyway with the number of shopping days dwindling I need some advice from you experienced Christmas gift buyers.
#1 on my list - My sister and her family, which includes her husband, 6-year-old son and 2-year-old triplets. It is just not economical for us to buy each of them a present, and my sister and her husband are very fortunate to both be retired under the age of 40 so the kids and them have pretty much everything you could imagine. Therefore it makes present buying very difficult. My goal has always been to buy them a unique family present but I need ideas, websites, inspiration, Ms. Cleo, and basically a swift kick in the arse to point me in the right direction.
#2 on my list - My dad. I know a ton of things I could get him but the problem is that he is now engaged and living with the woman (I have met her once and barely know her) and her 9-year-old daughter. What to do? If I buy something just for my dad then I might hurt his feelings because I am sending the message that I am not accepting his future wife and step-daughter as part of the family. I don't know the woman and daughter enough to even imagine what they might like, and I don't want to ask my dad for advice because I just don't. So I am channeling Princess Leah and asking "Help me Obi-Wan Kenobloggers, You're My Only Hope."

Sincerely Yours,

Mr. Shife

P.S. Here is a picture of Baby Shife. He lost a bet to me that me and Mrs. Shife's alma mater - the University of Idaho - would go to a bowl game this year so he had to wash his mouth out with his own foot. It is never to early to teach him father knows best. Or it might just be a picture of him being a little cutie pie. I really do love that kid more and more every day.

33 comments:

kylie said...

i make up little hampers for my bro, my sister and my parents. i just put in stuff they might already buy but try to make it the best.....chocolate, coffee, cheese & biscuits, a bottle of something maybe.

it means i dont have to buy anything specific for the in laws who can be problematic but i can customise to suit my family's faves.

i know it's not totally personal but when the goodies are gone nobody has to store some useless footspa or whatever and who doesnt like a little bit of luxury they didnt have to pay for?

i give prepacked hampers a miss though. they are BAD value and theres no personal thought or effort involved and often the product inside is stale

Crystal said...

ROFL I'll have to come back later and read, laughing too hard at the moment...

Leah said...

Hmmm. I always go with special books. For instance, a big beautiful child-friendly poetry anthology or song-book anthology for your sister's family.

I like that hamper idea too. I would be thrilled to get a food gift-basket, even from my near and dear.

Valerie said...

Great pictures at both ends of your post today.
Your Dad and his new family need a common gift to share between them. It cuts out the 'what ifs' ... I was going to suggest a hamper but kylie beat me to it. It is a good idea but can be pricey. We've just had one sent by stepdaughter in Australia and it's terrific.
How about a memento for sister, beautifully frame pic of cutie boy. Stuffling here, Shifey ...
Merry Christmas to you and yours.

Red said...

ON the Dad issue: You might be reading too much into that but diplomacy is always best. Get a group gift that the whole family can benefit from. The kid won't care unless it's something that she can get into so you're really sending the message to your Dad and his new wife.Maybe a Bed Bath gift card or Best Buy?
Thanks for swinging by. It is still insane madness where I am so light blogging will be the outcome until I can get all of five minutes to my self. (EYES ROLLING with massive intent)
And put some pants on "Santa", you're scaring the kids!

Red said...

P.S. Nod to Baby Shife for not welching on a bet with his ol man.

Kori said...

I am terrible at buying gifts for people because we haven't exchanged adult gifts for years-sorry. And frankly, gift cards are THE most impersonal and unoriginal item to buy, unless they are part of a theme of some sort. In my humble opinion, anyway. The little girl would probably love some jewelry; there are pretty inexpesnsive yet still cute stuff at Target, and perhaps a small purse. I dike the idea of a hamper-type thing for the others, though; maybe a coffee/cookie asortment?

Ah, Baby Shife is clearly learning early and well that dad is the boss 9now excuse me while I roll around and laugh hysterically at THAT one!

texlahoma said...

I'd buy them all carbon credits.

I think it's great that baby Shife isn't a sore loser.

Mr. Shife said...

First off thanks to everyone for their ideas so far. Very much appreciated. And Kylie I got a chuckle out of yours because a hamper to me is the place where I put my dirty clothes but I know what you are talking about. And you do live in Australia so I know the same words have different meanings sometimes. I learned from another Australian blogger a while ago what toey meant so I learn something new all the time through this blogging thing.

Mr. Shife said...

Crystal - Well hurry back. I am not going anywhere.

Leah - I like your ideas. I need to practice buying those type of books anyway since the little man will be reading before I know it.

Val - Great wisdom as usual. Very diplomatic and like you said it will cut out the what ifs. I don't need any extra drama during the holidays. Thanks again.

Mr. Shife said...

Red - You are as right as rain just like Val. I need to be a little more mature and take the high road. I hope the madness ends soon so you get some time to yourself. I will also pass along the note to Santa about putting on some pants. And that Baby Shife is turning out to be a pretty good kid if I must say so myself.

Kori - Thanks for your input and advice. Christmas is so much easier when you don't have to do the adult gift buying thing. Hopefully with all this help I can figure something out. And yes Baby Shife does now who really is in charge. You can see it in his eyes.

Texlahoma - Carbon credits works for me. Maybe I can send some to those Copenhagen hookers. Baby Shife is only a sore loser when I have to put him down for a nap. That is when the wildcat comes out and he puts up a fight.

kylie said...

oh, i didnt know hamper was one of those words with different meanings...we call those clothing things hampers here but always preceded by the word laundry :)

i have an american friend who is a very clever man but when i get going with my ocker accent and lots of slang he thinks i speak another language!

kylie said...

you could put coffee & cookies in a laundry hamper but jeez......you'd need a WHOLE lot of them :)

Elizabeth Bradley said...

I am the worse person to suggest what you might buy for anyone, I haven't bought anything, and don't know when I might have the inclination to do so. I think I am going to have my daughter-in-law shop for me this year, she's gung-ho about the idea. Want her number?

Poor Baby Shife, forced to wash his mouth out with his foot, shame on you guys. ;-]

Phats said...

I thought maybe that was your Christmas card this year Shife.

Jeez retired under the age of 40 WOW! I am not sure what to tell you to get them, or your dad really. For the wife and daughter though what about a gift card to a restaurant? We do gift cards quite a bit for people we don't know and people we work with. Everyone has to eat right?

GO VANDALS! Hope you don't vomit at the sight of all that BLUE

Ms. Moon said...

I say just google Bacon of The Month Club. Really! Everyone loves bacon! Right?
Or how about one of those great DVD collections about Planet Earth or something that the whole family can watch?
But really, I think bacon is better.
I love your boy. Can I kiss him? Isn't it great that you and Jon have these wonderful sons and I have this wonderful grandson? Aren't we lucky?

billy pilgrim said...

love the santa clause. makes me think of johnny larue.

give your dad 3 presents and call it even.

Crystal said...

Okay I managed to not laugh for too long this time. Seriously, that photo is awesome.

I totally agree with Valerie! I thought of photo frames as well. Good luck!

Crystal said...

Geez, how many exclamation points can one comment take?

Megan said...

I suck at shopping so I have no words of wisdom for you - but I like whoever said the Planet Earth DVD's or something similar.

My dad gives us all hampers like that every year. I can't wait to see what's in mine.

Merely Me said...

It's all about the kids.

Sis - ditto on the above comments - family time gifts = awesome - maybe like a tennis ball so whoever has the ball "has the court" and can talk - ha! Seriously - I would go with a read-aloud book for every moment of the day. If you write the right caption in it, you will have created a treasure (even without the caption). What about cookie cutters for every or a select few holidays with a demo recipe?

Dad - appeal to the 9 year old girl - the gal and your dad don't need anything. What's popular there with kids that age? Music download gift cards? Grunge/local college hoodies, glittery/bright nail polish/make-up, etc.

Sorry! You asked - and I even used restraint!

angel, jr. said...

I am not very good at buying Christmas gifts. I usually ask someone to help me too.

angel, jr. said...

I am not very good at buying Christmas gifts. I usually ask someone to help me too.

Dr. Kenneth Noisewater said...

That Santa is everything I want to be this Christmas Morning.

Will said...

I have to say I absolutely love your blog! If you have a spare moment please check out mine. The URL is getit2gether.wordpress.com Thanks alot man!

Steph said...

Wow, tricky. I got nothin for the first family, yeah I'm shit. For the second, when in doubt, giftcard.
Thoughtless but handy.

Waltsense.com said...

Give your pop new lady a picture of the santa you have on the blog. Frame it up and give her a card that says something like "Welcome to the family, now get pissed drunk". IF she doesn't laugh, scream at her that she'll never understand you and run out of the house.

Red said...

Ho-ho-ho! You've been totally linked! ANd Pee es. My "Baby blog rant" does not pertain to you in the slightest. You, I like.

The Egg said...

Hi Mr. Shife! I hope you're enjoying the holiday season! My idea of perfect presents are baked goods and pictures...you can't go wrong with a photo in a frame! Plus it's more personal than just buying a random gift.

Suzanne said...

Oh god, little Shife is so precious. You lucked out!!! I haven't read any of the comments because you know those babes influence the crap out of me. I'm coming in here blindfolded baby! I don't think your sister and family need anything. Rob and I have begun asking for NOTHING. Why would we need more? A nice card, a visit...simple stuff. But a gift? No. You might consider that. Your Dad and significant other, plus kid...that's different. I'm not concerned about your Dad or signifigant other...just about the kid!!! Kids deserve a great Christmas. For Daddy and future wife...what about a gift certificate to Hooters?! And for your future little sister...something special...a doll. A really, really beautiful doll. Yes, I know it's girlie, but trust me...it works! Yes, of course I love you. Shut up.

Limon Partido said...

Shife,
I have not even started my christmas shopping but I have just a few things for my girls in online shopping carts that I will be paying today for.
I can tell you that Christmas is for the kids, if you want your dad, his new wife and your step sister to feel welcome...just get her and awesome gift... My 9 year old is into purses, and anything from the store "Justice" Hope that helps. For your retired sister...well, that's harder, I like to buy environmental types gifts for those that have everything, like a subscription to something from the Nature Conservancy or something along those lines....

Love the photo of Baby Shife...you can tell buy the look in his eyes that he is up to something and just completely, totally happy...

tina said...

do you still need ideas? I might be able to come up with a few...

Ananda girl said...

Shife-- What a wonderful husband and father you are! All that love is touching and refreshing in a world full of people splitting apart. It is a great thing that you appreciate what you have. Here's to your happiness!

Go for food. Everyone eats it. A nice gift package of assortments. But include a personal note to let them know it's about them and how much you care. The way you write, that should be a piece of cake.