Monday, November 26, 2012

The Gift That Keeps You Guessing


Dear Helen Hartman,
For many years I have prided myself on finding the perfect present for everyone on my list.  In fact, I am kind of famous for my gift giving acumen.  But this year my kids have asked that I skip the gifts and just give them money.
Can you believe it?  Well, can you believe all my friends are fine with this? In fact they think it’s a good idea. For the love of all that is holly, what is wrong with people?

Dear Loved One,
Can I believe your kids just want money? 

This had better not be the only green we get our hands on this year!

What kids don’t?

But as usual when someone asks Helen a question, Helen has a question for you in return.

Because why should Helen do all the work? You’re the one with the problem.

You say you are famous for your gifts but have you ever considered you are actually infamous for them?

Another towel with a giant L on it? You know our names are Becky and Zelda, right?

Because I am getting the feeling maybe you are hearing acumen when what they are saying is –
"No thank you, ma’am."


Helen understands when she sees the stuff you have foisted off on unsuspecting innocents presented to your friends and family.

Mostly my mind is on - Why hasn't Apple done one of these - the iFurryFace?

But then Helen also understands that giving cash can be pretty boring. Helen has no room in her repertoire for boring.

      I’ve seen Helen’s repertoire, there’s more room there than she thinks.

Not to mention unlike, say fruitcake

"Fruitcake"  *so many bad jokes, soo many.

Ahem, unlike fruitcake, when a person gets money they usually wish there were more and are bummed by how fast it will be gone.

These very fruitcakes from Christmas 1974 are probably still being regifted. Let's face it when you think of delicious holiday food, you think of Sears.

She’d suggest you try giving gift cards instead but as comedian Jim Gaffigan says - a gift card is like giving someone a chore. Here, go to this place and pick yourself up something.

If you're going to give someone a task, why not one that will leave them with a masterpiece? You know you want these.

A lot of people would welcome your problem. The very idea of shopping let alone trying to pick out something that will make another person happy terrifies us.

Not everyone on your list is like Gunther here, who is happy with a radio strapped to his head and a new mustache brush (check to make sure he didn't steal one from your Furry Face)

For that reason Helen rarely strives to do it – make people happy. She gives them things all the time, mostly a piece of her mind!

The holidays in general can be overwhelming.



Don’t make it more so by worrying about what people want you to do.

Why should the holidays be any different from the rest of your year?

They say it is better to give than to receive but the truth is, being a good receiver makes you a better person. So consider it part of your gift to them to make them better people. 
Give them what you want to give them. Thems the rules of gifts.
Be grateful.
And keep the receipts. 

Joining Wow Us Wednesday because well, wow!

34 comments:

  1. Helen, I give gifts only to the people I live with. Otherwise, money or nothing. I do love picking out gifts but.... Oh, well.

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    1. Well, if the choice is money or nothing put me down for money!

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  2. Helen - I love to give and get money! lol sandie

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    1. My brother and sister and I started doing online gift cards then we realized we weren't so much giving gifts as just shuffling money around! So we don't give gifts unless we will be together.

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  3. I don't think I ever asked for money? I love getting a gift to unwrap!

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  4. I know we're told not to look a gift horse in the mouth, and we should be gracious receivers of gifts, but I'd much rather ask my family what they want or need for birthdays and Christmas. Making them happy is what makes me happy.

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    1. Yes, we're great list makers but then I always try to find a real surprise. Not always a nice surprise, though.

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  5. I LOVE starting off my week with Helen Hartman...and I imagine Gunther has those Fruitcake Long Johns on, under the flannel shirt! Thanks for a fabulous start to my Monday, Helen...hope yours is equally fabulous! Tanya

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    1. LOL - poor Gunther, he is in a world of his own, I think!

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  6. I do try to come up with special gifts. Maybe I should take this post to heart?

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    1. Or maybe you should step up your game - if you haven't gotten complaints about your special gifts, maybe you are being too thoughtful. People are missing out on the change to practice their good manners by appearing grateful.

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  7. Hey, money is easy. You don't have to pretend you actually CARE about the recipient.

    I do have a question - why is the woman wearing an apron while sewing?

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    1. Hmmmm. Because back then women wore aprons for everything? I don't know but I bet she sewed it herself.

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  8. The 14 year old wants gift cards this year...boo. At least there's hope with the 6 year old! Fabulous ads. I really like the furry record holder.

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    1. I wondered why no one was wishing they could have one of those - maybe the 14 year old?

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  9. I would be thrilled with a retro cat clock any day!

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  10. Bwahahahahahahahaha!!! SO funny!!! I'm really diggin' Gunther's 'stache! I have a friend named Gunther who might (or might not!) get a kick out of this. I don't understand why fruitcake has such a bad rep! I like it when it's done right. Hmmmm...must not be done right very often! :-)

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    1. I agree on fruitcake. If you ever have a really good one you spend the rest of your holidays trying to find another!

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  11. I always say money is the right color and size:@)

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  12. Hey I got the hairy record keeper for christmas one year:) At the time I thought it was great.
    Cathy

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    1. Oh my, I think we had a hairy record keeper in an office I used to work at! I do remember the craze of fur ball toys too!

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  13. I think its very difficult this subject people have forgotten why we give a gift as long as it comes from the heart i don't think it matters what you give. My children now they are older like to get a little money that way they can go and buy what they really want rather than have something they don't. Which does save money in the long run. But it still misses the point of a gift really. dee x

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    1. I agree. One year my son only got gift cards from everyone so his gift opening was done in seconds. I think at that point he got why money isn't as much fun on Christmas Day.

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  14. I love to get money!! But I'd rather give gift cards...makes me feel like I made a bit of an effort.

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    1. More points for you! I like to get amazon cards so I don't have to go anywhere to get stuff. Yes, I a lazy that way.

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  15. Love it....as always ~ a visual treat ~ lol!! You could hide the cash in the fruitcake....see who really loves ya!

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    1. Like a Christmas pudding! Brilliant. I want to do this now - or better yet wait until January then tell everyone I gave a fruitcake to that I did that (even though I didn't) and watch them get mad at themselves for tossing it out.

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  16. I just cant get over that record holder ... I mean ... seriously who thinks these things up?!
    Just looking at that thing makes me giggle.

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    1. I'm sure lots of little girls squealed with delight to get that on Christmas morning!

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