Are My Presents Getting Smaller?


                Today, I walked by my Christmas tree and took a little peek underneath it. Unlike some families, mine likes to put the presents out there and torture us by making us look at the presents unopened until Christmas day. It’s great.

So naturally, I looked a little closer at mine and they were so…small. My cousins (who are all younger than me) had these giant-ass boxes and I had an envelope or a tiny present that was less than the size of my hand. Shocked, I might say, but unsurprised at the same time. Of course I don’t know what’s in them, but it definitely comes down to two guesses: a Target gift card or Charming Charlie’s jewelry.

Is it that hard to shop for me? Every time I have a birthday, my friends don’t even get me that much of meaningful gifts; they’re all so small and usually they’re made of cash. As a person who shows affection through gift-giving, I’m a little disappointed. Gifts are the time to get creative and do something interesting! If you’re going to give cash money, at least put it in a giant box, throw some green paper in there, and wrap it a dozen times to make it an adventure to look for. Get witty. Get cute. After all, isn’t that what you do for your significant other when you buy him or her a gift?

YES. Or if not, you’re sort of pathetic, but it’s okay. I’ve come to the conclusion that I’m not the only one who is hard to shop for. Honestly, I used to get great presents in big boxes. The bigger the present, the more I liked it. But last year, I got two books for Christmas…and they were about how to navigate the stock market. Because that’s what I really wanted the most for Christmas. Thanks, mom.

I’m expecting the same gifts, if not. As we get older, it feels as if people just become lost in what to get us. This problem sort of started when I was around 15 years old and started to close myself off from my parents. That may be part of the problem: when we get older, we become more private. Therefore, nobody knows what the hell to do because they don’t know you.

And the point of presents (at least for me) was to beg your parents to get everything on your dream list that you couldn’t get before because you were 1) too young to cross the road to a store by yourself and 2) not allowed to carry your own lunch money. Since a lot of us are in college now or at least in high school, we have the luxury to buy everything on our dream list, as long as it’s within our budget, whenever and wherever we want. It’s amazing – yet takes the point out of the gift-giving ideas.

What’s the real purpose of a present? Well, the best gifts are the ones that you get for the other person. Not what you think is great or what you really want. The idea is to give and that requires a lot of money and a lot of thinking. Then the next step is to incorporate a little bit of yourself into the gift to describe your relationship with that person. When I was 16, instead of buying me a $25 gift card to Wal-Mart, one of my friends made me a care package that was filled with everything that reminded her of our relationship: coffee-flavored chocolate and poetry. Even though the whole thing was about $10, I loved it the most.

The best gifts are the most meaningful, not to sound cliché or anything. And I’m fine if my presents are ten times smaller than usual…if they have meaning. What the hell am I going to do with a Sam’s Club gift card if I don’t even shop at Sam’s Club? There’s no point! If you’re going to get me a gift, you should know me well enough to know what I want. And if you don’t know what I want, take the latter route and make me a care package. Or anyone else a care package! If I wanted a book on the stock market, I’d go buy a book on the stock market.

That’s the other problem though: if you want something, you’d probably go buy it unless it’s a Chanel perfume bottle or dinner at the Ritz. That’s what’s hard about making the gift so special. You’ve got to keep it under-budget, yet intriguing. Small, in my opinion, and I’d much rather prefer the gift is small and meaningful rather than big and empty.

Maybe I’m just sentimental. And weird. Or completely typical as the person who actually wants to be given something meaningful. Our rooms are too cluttered with junk we don’t want, so why would you even want someone to add to the pile? What do you awesome nerds think? Are your presents getting smaller, too?


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