Thursday, February 01, 2007

Raindrops on Roses and Whiskers on Kittens

A leftover picture that i was unable to post yesterday.
Today's big philosophical question: So we can't skip real stones anymore, we have to buy a bit o' plastic with which to skip? What marketing genius came up with this? I would think that kids prefer rocks. (For reference, about 2.5 inches across.)


One of my favorite things is to receive a present for no reason. I don't much care about Valentine's Day or Christmas or my birthday. But bring me a present for no other reason than that you saw something that you thought i would like, and i am over the moon.

I try to keep this in mind for other people too, so that i am not just walking around expecting to be showered with random gifts. Which is good, because i seldom am.

I bought my brother a T-shirt a few months ago that had a Shakespeare quote on it that i knew he would like. "And Thus I Clothe My Naked Villany" (from one of the Richards, i think III.) I bought one for myself too. My mother buys things and saves them for the next suitable gift giving occasion, but i always pass stuff on right away, because that's what i think is fun.

Yesterday i brought home a book that i thought the Mister would like. He was genuinely touched. That was fun.

So, when is the last time you surprised someone or were surprised with a present? What was it?


Anonymous said...

I surprised someone w/ a flower delivery yesterday. She had no idea and I did it because she's wonderful and deserved it. It's as much fun to do as to receive.

Your post title - M has me sing her that song every night.

Anonymous said...

The last time I was surprised was a couple of months ago when Missus Chica's Mother sent me a lovely catnip mouse.....the gift that keeps on giving.

When the Missus was still working Mister Hombre often surprised her with flowers for no reason, "Just Because". But the day he took her breath away, he brought her a dying butterfly. He'd found a nearly perfect specimen in a parking lot. He saw it and knew that she would adore it. She finished a drawing of it a few months ago.

Anonymous said...

LOVE the tee shirts! Where'd you get them, and can you score one for me?!

I, too, love the random gifting. I don't remember the last one I got (my family still hasn't coughed up a birthday gift, and we're more than half a month past...), but I bought a girlfriend a little Earth Mother figurine not too long ago...

Princess in Galoshes said...


You and I are on the *exact* same wavelength. I JUST got this t-shirt for a friend.

And when I say just, I mean, it is still sitting in my mailbox because I haven't yet gotten my mail, today.

No reason. But I know she will love it.

Princess in Galoshes said...

Did that link show up?

Try this:

Delete the space I put between product/ and 548

Lynn said...

I love to buy things, when I see them,to give as gifts at usual gift-giving times...(clearly I'm not as nice a person as you are). Usually I put these wonderful gifts away until the "proper" occasion presents itself. My problem lies in not being able to find these treasures when I need them, or forgetting that I already purchased the "perfect gift" and then buying something equally as perfect. Having read your post, I think that I may follow your example and just "pass the stuff on right away". Thanks.

Anonymous said...

We are much alike, in many surprising (or maybe not so much) ways.

I bought two little rocks with the word "create" carved on them to give to the ladies who work for me during their respective reviews this year (next week). We're in marketing. Get it?

I also am constantly buying things for my kids. And my mother sends me random, fabulous packages in the mail at the eeriest moments. Just when I need a boost, usually, and she doesn't even know it.

meno said...

jen, bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens, silver white winters that melt into spring.... As a child we listened to The Sound of Music every Sunday (the Broadway version) on my dad's reel-to-reel tape player. How nice of you to send flowers to a friend. I love it when that happens to me.

patches, catnip mouses are a favorite item in this house. Or sometimes catnip without the mouse. That is a beautiful butterfly story. Will you post the picture?

mrs.chili, we got it from the Seattle Shakespeare Company. They have several wonderful Ts. I just looked at their website, but they don't sell the Ts on it. I think you have to go down there in person. If i do i'll get you one. What size? I am about a 12 and i wear an L, I could wear an M, but i don't like stuff too tight. They are girl Ts.

princess, i am going to have to get one of the sweatshirts for Em. I love it. The first link did work.

lynn, you are easily as nice as i am, and smarter too because i always stress at gift giving times because i've already given the good stuff away. But i love getting things for no reason so much that i try to pass it on. Have fun.

Mignon said...

On Monday a friend GAVE me 4 bags of Thomas Train track and paraphanelia that her kids had out-grown. My husband is gone all this week and I was about to lose my shit with boredom and single-parent angst, and this gift was Manna.

Today my house is an unrecognizable maelstrom of Tom, and I'm sure there are a couple days of lunches and snacks mixed up in the fracas, but the kids have been completely entertained for the last 4 days.

QT said...

I buy or make little things for people all the time. The last thing I gave someone was a CD I made for a co-worker of old R&B tunes we were talking about one day that she wished she had to listen to.

As for being on the other end, does the BF unexpectedly folding my laundry for me count?

SUEB0B said...

Does this count? Tonight at the gas station, this funky kid with a floppy mohawk and I pulled up to the pump at the same time from different directions. He let me go first.

So when I went in to pay for my gas (I go to the last cash-only, pay in advance gas station on earth, apparently), I paid for my gas and paid for $5 worth of the other guy's gas too (he was still out waiting for a pump). Then I raced to get my gas and get out of there, a secret present-giver, laughing.

shara said...

I'd much rather give or receive a gift for no reason than one of the gift-giving-days.

And that plastic skippy thing. That's just awful. Right up there with peanut butter slices. (Like cheese slices. Honestly. I saw them in the Wal-Mart one day.)

Susanne said...

I never get presents unexpectedly because obviously I'm hard to give presents too. Although my husband has gotten far better over the years. I taught him the "if somebody mentions something or you think of it, write it down immediately"-approach my mother taught me. (And of course I have a special place to write this down, otherwise you won't find it when needed.)

I used to give my husband presents just for fun a lot, but nowadays every book or CD or whatever seems to come with an invisible "I demand your attention, time and energy"-label attached to it.

The last person I surprised was my son. I found him a book about the stone age. I love giving him presents so much, I could do it every day. But that would be a little too much.

Anonymous said...

My friend came for lunch Tuesday bearing two paperback books. My husband came home last night with dinner for me, owing to a conversation we'd had about his lunches out. I suggested he could order for me once in a while, and he did.

I don't go shopping very often, so I don't get struck by the urge to impulse buy. However, I was feeling a bit low on Tuesday morning when I went to the supermarket & they had a display of bird seed with all these huge helium bird balloons (we're talking as big as the kids). Fiona got a cardinal and Lorenzo a blue bird. The nice part was that the cashier gave me the balloons for $3.00 instead of the $11 they were supposed to be. They've been "flying" around the house with them all week.

Anonymous said...

Mother of Invention SAID:

I'm a giftie sort of person too and I'm out a lot at stores and sales so I do a lot of that. I store some of them in my "gift" section of my attic but others I give the next time I see the person. I just gave my sister a pretty Laura Ashley teapot I got at a silent auction to add to her collection.

Anonymous said...

I'm the same way - I love surprising people with gifts. I sent a box of books to an internet buddy yesterday.

Lynnea said...

I'm afraid I'm the save it for occasion person. Its mostly a budget thing. But I get so excited to find the 'perfect' gift. I make a list and keep track so I don't lose things and I know who has a 'perfect' gift waiting. But I do love the spontaneous stuff. Like the time my husband brought home a bouquet of flowers for no reason. That just melts me.

AC said...

It was the van the Mr. sold for my piano. Not a surprise, wanting a piano or that we had an extra work van, but the insistence of the use of the money, that got to me.

The great thing about gifts, the getting, is that I am so ready to look for one to give. For the van/piano thing, I am working one of the *other* five love languages. We are both winning that one.

Liv said...

last night I went to BN and got a few Valentine's books for the kids, and a Beatrix Potter number game. It is a lot more fun buying for others for me. I love the thrill of the token of affection!

Anonymous said...

Picture posted, accompanied by sappy commentary.

Bobealia... said...

My mom and I send each other presents for no reason all the time. I save American catalogues from Anthropologie etc. for her ('cause I'm poor) and she sends me books and the odd shirt or pants.

karmic said...

One of my favorite things is to receive a present for no reason
You as so like Mrs.Jay. She is not big on gifts and esp not on sp occasions. So I just try to surprise her once in a while.

Julie Q. said...

That Skippies thing just makes me sad. Someone gave my kids a snowman kit last year. It had painted wooden pieces in the shapes of coal eyes, buttons, arms and a carrot nose. Blah. Half of the fun is finding those things on your own.

Imez said...

The worst thing about that skippie thing up there is that you can only use it in a pool, or somewhere it won't float away. Lame.

When I got pregnant my best friend who lives a million miles away just starting sending me wonderful stuff. Cds of music I never heard before, chocolate from different countries, clothes for the baby, homemade blankets. They just kept coming. God she's cool.

meno said...

jennifer, What a nice thing to do, and i’ll bet it was fun too. I could buy something almost daily for Em. Your mom is a treasure.

mignon, Your friend is a saint. I understand how important that kind of thing is with young kids. Give her a little present back maybe.

qt. you make stuff? How cool is that! Laundry folding so counts, i need someone to do that for me today. I am in that place where i can’t quite get myself to fold that last load sitting in the dryer.

suebob, that’s the best story ever. You rock.

shara, peanut butter slices? I so hope you are making that up, but i know it’s probably true. That’s revolting.

suzanne, why are you obviously hard to give present to? It’s not obvious to me.

de, those things all count. I love balloons, but $11? Wow, that was nice of the cashier.

MOI, that’s excellent, i’ll bet it made your sister’s day too.

biodtl, i think books might be the ultimate fun surprise gift. I know i love getting them.

maggie, unexpected flowers are rare around here, but when it happens it is so charming. How sweet of him.

ac, i read that post. What a neat surprise. Have fun playing....and the piano too.

liv, i don’t think there are many of us who don’t love that thrill, either giving or receiving.

patches, excellent.

bo, i want your mom!

sanjay, That’s because it means that someone thought about us and not that they had to get us something. So much better.

julie, it is sad isn’t it? You just know that some marketing “genius” came up with the snowman kit. How stupid.

esereth, well someone used it in the lake. I guess i should go retrieve it and try it, but looking for the perfect stone is part of the fun. You have a great friend.

Kellyology said...

I sent my pregnant with twins and dealing with gestational diabetes SIL some protein cookies last week as she, poor thing, hit her 36th week with no sign of the pregnancy ending. And yes...she's still pregnant. Induction date is next Wednesday, thank goodness!

My favorite surprise came from 'da husband. He left 2 pumpkins on my front porch back during our dating years for us to carve. It was very sweet as in those days he was a poor graduate student, and he paid attention enough to know that I loved Halloween.

sari said...

I like gifts for no reason better than gifts for a reason. Usually I send them to my sisters (I have four).

Last week I sent one sister (she lives by herself and is working two jobs and just got into nursing school) a set of magnets - a bunch of monkeys with different "moods".

You put a little picture frame around the one that matches your mood for the day.

I remember being in my 20's and living alone in my little empty apartment so I like to surprise them.

PS LOVE Sound of Music. I could sing the songs every day forever. Mostly when no one's around, but I could.

shara said...

Sorry Meno, peanut butter slices exist. As awfully as hot dogs already in buns, in plastic, ready in the microwave in 9 and a half seconds or something like that.

meno said...

kelly, good for you. That's a hard time, pregnant and diabetic. I know she could use the extra attention. I love the pumpkins too. I hope you roasted the seeds.

sari, i have no sisters. I wish i did. You are rich in sisters. The sound of music is such a part of my childhood. We went to the stage production a few years ago and i was sniffling, mostly from the memories.

shara, Nah nah nah, fingers in ears, i CAN'T HEAR YOU!

Anonymous said...

I love getting and receiving presents. The last unexpected one I gave was a voucher for a facial for my sister when she was feeling very depressed because I hoped it would help her feel better. She took it a couple of weeks ago and told me that it really did and she loved it.

The last unexpected gift I got was from the same sister, who talked the beauty therapist into giving her a little bag of beauty samples after her facial which she then gave to me. Inside was a product that I adore but can't afford to buy because I'd have to sell Stumpy to cover the cost. I have a big smile on my face just thinking about it. :)

urban-urchin said...

I just bought my husband the new "Shins" album and some fancy chocolates when my daughter and I were in the city yesterday. The chocolates were for him to enjoy right away- the cd, for Valentines Day.