Saturday, April 17, 2010

To gift or not to gift, that is the question

As I sit here and write thank you notes on behalf of Jacob for his 5th Birthday gifts, I wonder.
When do they start to write their own…and I may get in trouble for writing this but, what do you do or say when someone doesn’t give a gift?
I know it shouldn't be an expectation that one brings a gift but I think that it’s an assumption, right? At least for a 5 year old who keeps very tight inventory of his possessions as well as those things coming in.
I'm not talking about the guests who tell you that they have ordered something special online and it will arrive shortly or, those that bring a gift the next day cause after all, shit happens and let's face it. Kid’s parties are not a top priority for the guests. It means the world to the birthday child, the parents and the grandparents but for the rest, not so much.
So, do you say something to the parent or keep your mouth shut? They know who they are and not sure what they’re thinking but I would be so embarrassed! But then again, maybe they brought a gift and the place forgot to put it into Jacob’s bin and so someone else got it by accident? Hmmm, not likely but I’m learning to give people the benefit of the doubt.
And so as I sit here and express my gratitude to the people that came and gave, my feelings are a mixture of gratefulness and bitterness. I know that I’ll get over it but do tend to hold grudges!
A few weeks ago someone posted on Facebook how rude they thought it was that people stopped writing Thank you notes so I throw this one out there and would love to hear your thoughts.
For now though, I gotta get back to work, Dear Guest, thank you for…


  1. Perhaps it may be that they couldn't afford a gift, especially in these hard economic times. Isn't it just as good that the friend came and celebrated his birthday with him? Or perhaps it did get misplaced, to hold a grudge is kind of silly. I'm sure your son doesn't know who gave a gift and who didn't, unless you made a point of telling him. I'm sure he had fun anyway!! Life is way to short to sweat the small stuff. That would be a good lesson to teach your son.

  2. Thanks for reading and commenting on my blog Anonymous, I welcome opposing points of view however, I'm not buying it. In these economic times, EVERYONE can afford thoughtfulness and I am a firm believer in the old adage that "It's the thought that counts." In terms of teaching my son life lessons, he has already learned that you never show up empty handed and that a nice homemade gift or even just a card to acknowledge the special occasion speaks volumes. Make a homemade card, bake a cupcake or, if that is too much effort, visit the countless Dollar stores… THAT, I believe, anyone can afford. Not sure where you're coming from assuming that the gift ought to be expensive to be worthwhile, but that perhaps is where you need to reassess what comprises good manners. Recently, a friend who truly IS affected by these economic times gave Jacob a box. A large empty cardboard box that cost nothing but, gave Jacob hours and hours of imaginary play. Take that as a lesson and please, reassess your own values and help teach your children that you don’t need to spend money to have manners and since Life is way too short to sweat the small stuff, I forgive you!

  3. I would love to hear your thoughts on this subject...

  4. Really, reasses my values?? I would never have made a big deal about a gift not being given to my child. Of course I did

    teach my child to give a gift, I've taught my children right from wrong and what's the proper thing to do in social situations. I loved the fact that you wrote thank you cards, which I did do. In fact they started writing them as soon as they could print!I'm just suggesting to you that perhaps you are over reacting. Maybe I'm older than you and have more life experience than you, really don't sweat the small stuff. Believe me more important things are headed your way with a child. And I also think you'll continue to be disappointed in other people and the way they raise their children. It really is amazing how other people aren't parenting their children!


Would love to hear from you!