Thoughts on Gifts: Best and Worst of Our Relationship

It’s Cyber Monday, the biggest online shopping day of the year.  So I’m writing about gifts today.  This morning I shared my thoughts on giving and receiving gifts. Later on I’ll share my suggestions for great gifts.  But first, a look back at some gifts Mike and I have exchanged over the years.

We’ve celebrated a lot of birthdays, Christmases, anniversaries together–well 8 of each so far–and exchanged gifts for most of these occasions.  Some presents have been great, some middle-of-the-road, and some not so great.  Here’s a list of the best and worst gifts we’ve given each other.

Best from Jo to Mike

  • poker table-top with Flyers tickets inside
  • tickets to see Jerry Seinfeld–This was for a birthday and I started giving Mike clues about a month before the show.  Creating the clues was really fun and stretched out the enjoyment of the gift.
  • a trip to Boston to see the Kennedy Library
  • hand-made fleece blanket
  • tickets to Nickelback in Hershey Park

Best from Mike to Jo


  • pink iPod mini–Mike got this for me for free freshman year of college by getting a certain number of people to click a link.  It was a ton of work.  I really really wanted an iPod that year.
  • tickets to see Mary Poppins on Broadway
  • pretty off-white down vest from Gap
  • a right-hand ring–Mike bought me this for Christmas one year.  I lost it at work.  The next year, he surprised me by getting me the exact same one to replace it.  I remember we went through the McDonald’s drive-thru and were sitting in the parking lot and he said, “Can you get me a napkin out of the glovebox?” I opened the glovebox and there was a ring box inside.  I opened it and was so surprised and excited.
Worst from Mike to Jo
  • 7th Heaven Season 1 on DVD–this was a good idea because 7th Heaven was one of my favorite shows at the time.  I just never watched it.  Think it’s still in my closet at my dad’s.
  • Build-a-Bear–It breaks my heart to list this because of the embarrassment Mike had to put himself through in the mall with his mom.  Putting the heart on his nose and spinning around and making wish and kissing it.  I mean that’s love.  But it just wasn’t that cute. And he said he tried to dress it like me, and it had a white t-shirt, khaki’s, and a black purse.  Ugh, is that what I dress like??
Worst from Jo to Mike
  • book about JFK Jr.
  • Flyers Jersey–like 7th Heaven on DVD, this was a good idea but Mike just never wore it. Also, makes the worst list because I accidentally ruined the surprise by sharing a conversation I was having with my sister’s boyfriend.  He was saying nice things about my sister and I wanted to show Mike, forgetting that during the conversation I had told the boyfriend was I was getting Mike for Christmas. I was so mad at myself.

I’d love to know:

What are some of the bests gifts you’ve ever received?  How about the worst?

Want to give great gifts this year?  Check back at 4pm for my gift guide!

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