I Refuse To Give In to Present Face

There’s a game going on on Facebook right now. You “like” someone’s status, and they give you a year to reminisce about. But when the year 2003 popped up, I realized just how bad my mom brain is. . . I could barely remember what happened that year. So I decided it was time to revisit my columns from way back when. The Inside Outs that have taken readers of the Sullivan County Democrat on adventures with me ARE my stories of the years gone by. 

Here’s one from May 2003!

There’s got to be a strategy set in place by early May in my family.

Jonathan and I have what seems like a ton of gifts to buy – and they have to be perfect (my rule, not his).
So how are we getting ready for the upcoming Mother’s Day holiday with two moms to buy for, his mother’s
birthday, two of my closest friends’ natal days and Father’s Day nipping at their heels (with, again, two dads to buy for) – we’re moving into our new house!
I tell you, I’m at my wits’ end. I’ve got unpacking to do, decorating to accomplish, paint samples to choose, and yet I have to find that perfect gift to knock somebody’s socks off.

I tend to get a little crazy this time of year – oftentimes friends and family like to mix things up by adding in a Confirmation gift or graduation honorific I have to scout out and purchase.

Jonathan never knows if he’ll come home to find me pouring over catalogs and circulars with sheets of paper covering the dining room table like an Army strategy map of shopping.  You have to understand – I’m a little manic about gift-giving. Like everyone else, I love to receive, but there’s just this thing about watching a face
light up with delight when they rip that paper off a box and find out what’s inside.

So, like I said, it has to be perfect. I don’t want them to take it back – what’s the fun in that?

There’s nothing more difficult than trying to plaster a fake smile to your lips – one that reaches into your eyes – when you’ve just extricated a Pepto Bismol-pink sweater from beneath mounds of tissue paper. Unless you count finding one of those hideous dollar store specials that the buyer pries from your fingers and promptly places on top of the mantle – where they expect to see it again the next time they visit.

I’ve gotten some horrible presents. I’ve also gotten some that were just awful to me, but bought with love
and care by someone with a very big heart.  You just can never tell what someone wants. Some people love Precious Moments figurines. I balk at the sight of one under my Christmas tree.

So how does this all tie in with my work at the Democrat?

Like I said, I’m already behind in my task. I have a few ideas in mind – but I can’t tell you guys just yet. My  mom might read the paper!

My job, however, seems to be my saving grace right now. I’ve been all over the county in the past year and a half – so I’ve seen hundreds of stores on my travels that might just help me solve my troubles.

But, of course, I have to go back to strategizing. So, if you see a lady with short hair and a big map-like piece of paper wandering aimlessly down the street Saturday, don’t fret. It’s just me, on the trail of the perfect  present. 

Have you “liked” Inside Out Motherhood on Facebook yet? 

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