This morning I felt the need to let someone else cook breakfast – no, not Devoted Spouse, but the nice folks at the local Bob Evans. It was not difficult for me to justify blueberry hotcakes on a cold, grey day.
While waiting for our breakfast to arrive, we talked about what to get each other and the family for Christmas this year. We decided the best idea is to give the family various gift cards and let them decide what they want at their favorite stores. I looked down at my place mat and noticed the following: “Surprise them with a Bob Evans Gift Card and the only thing they’ll return is their gratitude.” I read that sentence outloud to Devoted Spouse and I had a few snarky comments to make. Then I realized that just because a free meal at Bob Evans wasn’t on my wish list to Santa, that doesn’t mean someone else wouldn’t appreciate a gift like that. Hmmmm, snarky comment retraction.
I guess it was inevitable that everybody would get on the gift card bandwagon – and I’m not saying I don’t take advantage of these offers – it’s just that I miss what gift-giving used to be about — when you had occasion to find a present, for whatever reason, it was something you spent time and effort acquiring, or better yet, something you made just for that person.
Okay – I admit, I tried to make some gifts over the years — in fact I only recently tossed the tie I was making for Devoted Spouse for Christmas….oh 15 years or so ago. I try, I really do. I just don’t always find the time to finish those presents. So, I imagine gift cards really are a godsend to some folks; those who don’t have the time to shop, or the crafty talents needed to make something a notch up from the macaroni sculpture. But, you have to agree with me that gift cards are a bit cold and impersonal. You don’t have to put too much thought into picking out a card and sending it. Gift cards don’t need special wrapping, just slip them in their envelopes and you’re done.
So, yes, I’ll probably pick up a few gift cards this year – but I’m also going to make a concerted effort to make a few homemade items, too. Bob Evans says they’ll return with gratitude — we’ll see about that.