Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Most Meaningful Gifts of 2012

I've gotten a lot of meaningful gifts this year.  The few that stand out made me either giggle, laugh, or cry when I received them.  They made my favorite list simply because they brought a squishy feeling to my stomach when I received them.  Although, I received a lot of cute handmade things from my kids, I'm going to concentrate on materialistic items (yeah, I know) that tug at my heart and you will see why.  Get ready for my long winded stories.  Feel free to skip this post if it gets to mushy. 

TB Handbag - My husband came home one evening with an ENORMOUS grin on his face and told me he had a gift for me.  He handed me a dust bag and I knew immediately that he didn't buy it because the bag was way too small to be anything I would carry and even though I recognized the Tory Burch emblem, I knew he knew I had never shown an interest in buying one.  So why did it make it on my most meaningful gift of 2012?

That's because my husband told me that he won this bag for no other reason, but because of me.  He had gone to a conference to learn about trademarks and copyright infringements.  As a contest, they had brought several handbags, real and replicas.  If you could name the most correctly, you won the Tory Burch bag.  He told me he had a lot of "experience" at identifying the handbags because of me.  That's sad that my handbag obsession has brought this on.  Despite my obsession, nearly everyone of my handbags I have, I received as a gift from him.  I'll admit I'm just too frugal to buy them myself most of the time and half the time he gives me one, I tell him to return it.  He's learned to "lose" the receipt on more than one occasion.  

He was so giddy coming home because he knew I would have a huge smile when he said it was FREE and an even bigger smile when he could tell me why.  The squishy feeling it gave me when he said the LV purse was fake because of the handles while Chanel purse was a definite bad replica because of the material just made me want to squeal.  He definitely knew me and because he knew me, he won me a free bag.  That's why this bag makes it on my favorites list.

S Tablet- I hate putting an electronic device on a meaningful gift list, but it has become something I don't think I could live without and without a doubt it has united me with many different people.  This summer I started a book goal for myself and then became obsessed (which is an understatement).  I borrowed my sister's kindle on more than one occasion till finally she said she needed it back (because her obsession was WAY beyond my obsession and I am pretty obsessed).

I was in the middle of a book that I really wanted to finish and my sister was taking her kindle home despite much begging and pleading SO my hubby surprised me when he came home with this (the only tablet that Costco was selling at the time). 


I generally do major research before buying almost everything and I especially do not buy anything NOT on sale (yes, I know, double negative) without at the very least looking it up, but my husband's excuse was that it was Costco so if I didn't like it, I could return it.  I can honestly say that this device gets used EVERYDAY.  I still go to the library on a weekly basis, but it takes me forever to read a library book because I don't have time to read in the day and I get tired of holding a flashlight and a book to read at night in the dark. That is UNTIL, my hubby came home with this head flashlight. 

Isn't he considerate?  Now I can read in the dark!  I may look like a dork (hence, that's a picture of E., not me), but I don't care so long as I have no permanent pictures as evidence;).

The real reason that the tablet was such a great gift is that it really helped me want to read.  As a child I hated to read and now I love it so much so that I created a book club where each month we meet to discuss everything under the moon (and of course books). The tablet is a great tablet (so much so that half our book club members have now bought one), but what was even better was that it brought together a group of women who wouldn't otherwise come together each month.

Photo Op - It's no secret that I love cameras and I love taking pictures.  My husband did buy me a really nice camera this year, but I would say that what was more memorable is the photography job he got me and the fact that he pushed me to do it.  I was so nervous to shoot a wedding and at first I told him I wasn't going to do it, but in the end, he convinced me to.

He gave me my first real photography job, a new camera to do the job, and the confidence to do it.

 All I ever want when asked is happiness in a box.  I know, its super cheesy, but that is really all I ever want so generally when anyone asks me, my answer is always "nothing."  Growing up from such humble beginnings, I got used to getting nothing.  When I say nothing, I really mean nothing that was non-essential.  If we could live without it, we did.

Fairy Doll - I remember the very first non-essential gift I got was from my sitter, whom I called "Ma" (northern dialect for Mom in Vietnamese.  I called my birth mom, "Me" which is the southern dialect for Mom in Vietnamese)  because she was in every way another mom to me.  She gave me my very first toy, first barbie.  It was a fairy and it was my first real Christmas gift, something I didn't need.  I must have been 5 or 6 years old and when I opened it, I was just ecstatic.  I was probably the happiest kid on the block that day, but my happiness was short lived as I was told by my birth mom that she was going to re-gift the barbie because she couldn't afford to buy a gift for her friend's daughter.  Needless to say, I was crushed, but when you expect nothing growing up, you get used to it.

We're supposed to be talking about 2012, right?  Well, Santa brought something to my neighbor to give to me.  When I opened it, tears just flowed.  I was so emotional because what I got was a fairy barbie doll.

Do I have a fantastic neighbor or what?  I told her that story in passing when we were talking about how lucky our kids are and I mentioned that my kids will never experience some of things I went through.  I'm really quite shocked at this gift.  I think it means so much because I'm reminded of the fact that yeah, its great to get a gift, but the person behind the gift, the friendship behind the gift means so much more.  I'm so lucky for having such a great friend.  One that really knows how to give me happiness in a box.

So enough of my yapping and my sappiness.  I want to wish everyone one a Happy New Year!  I look forward to all that it brings.


  1. Happy New Year, H! I found your blog... can't remember how. Maybe through Pedro's website? Anyway, what's this about a book club? Is it something I can join?
    From building 584... Shelli.

    1. Sure you can join the book club. Just email me here or work :) and I'll get you the details.


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