On the 3rd day of Christmas…

The Perfect Gift, by Bronwyn Jameson

Almost as much as choosing the perfect gift, I love the wrapping. I save up the gifts for an intensive day of wrapping, with all my carefully chosen papers and ribbons and bows laid out before me, all so prettily tempting. I’m not a fan of the monotone gift wrap, not at Christmas. I adore the colours of the season, the combination of red and green and gold, the tinsel and sparkles and patterns. I love the picture they make piled beneath the decorated tree, and the anticipation of waiting for the great unwrapping.

But the perfect gift doesn’t always come prettily wrapped under the tree. It’s often not store bought but homemade, thoughtfully chosen as perfect for that one person and created with wholehearted love. Home baking,  a memory book or collection of photos, a hand stitched blanket or craft keepsake, a voucher to babysit or cook a special meal or take on another task in a busy person’s life.

What is your perfect gift, to give or receive?

Share your thoughts and go in the draw to win a signed copy of my Bestseller Collection, In Bed With the Boss’s Daughter and Addicted to Nick, plus a pretty phone jewel.


27 Responses to “On the 3rd day of Christmas…”

  1. 1 Rachel Bailey
    December 9, 2008 at 9:33 am

    Oh, Bronwyn, I do the exact same thing with a wrapping day. LOVE it! I choose a different colour scheme for each year. Last year was blue and silver. I bought bows and ribbons in different shades of blue, and lots of sparkly silver, and different papers in the same colours. The year before was red and gold.

    Which reminds me – I haven’t chosen a colour scheme for this year! Must get onto that.

  2. 2 Avi J
    December 9, 2008 at 10:20 am

    Hey bron, well only one l think is the perfect gift to give, The gift of love and goodwill. I know that there are many who say it as a generic term, but really there are so many people who really need it. Like, l help an organization that assists in helping kids who lost one or both parents. You should see how it really makes a diffrence as the holidays can be hard to get through. l lost my dad three years ago, when l was twenty. It is just a blessing to be able to help others.

  3. December 9, 2008 at 10:51 am

    Avi, that truly is what the season of giving is all about. Christmas is a wonderful joyous time for so many of us, but can be a difficult one for others. My hat off to you.

    Christmas really is about family/friends, the love and care we put into finding the perfect gift, wrapping it just so. Beautiful post, Bron. And that cover looks sooooo good 🙂

  4. 4 limecello
    December 9, 2008 at 12:16 pm

    lol – I always love the wrapping period.
    My perfect gift for Christmas? That would be job.

    As for good gifts… I think I did really well with my dad and sister. Got sister exactly what she wanted – random makeup& tools, and Spain on the Road… Again [dvds to be sent to her condo]. And bought the entire 007 boxed set for my dad [from my sister and I].

  5. 5 Ellen
    December 9, 2008 at 2:40 pm

    The perfect gift for someone to give me would be a gift certificate to a book store. The prefect gift for me to give someone would be something they really wanted but couldn’t afford.

  6. December 9, 2008 at 2:56 pm

    I usually wrap stuff as soon as I get them home–less chance of people snooping and finding something they aren’t supposed to (and my one sister is a first class snoop!).

    As for gifts, I love cross-stitching handmade gifts or ornaments for friends and family, but due to an elbow injury earlier in the summer I’ve been unable to do so this year. Every time it starts to feel better I somehow manage to aggrevate it again.

    And for receiving? You can never have too many books or craft supplies. *g*

  7. December 9, 2008 at 9:39 pm

    Rachel, have you chosen your colour scheme yet? *g* How about purple with gold or silver? (Am loving rich purples at the moment.)

    Avi, what a perfect answer. Too often the true message of Christmas is spouted as a platitude and even more often it becomes lost in the commercialised frenzy so thank you…and peace to you all.

    Robyn, thank you. My favourite cover, but I suspect we all have a special fondness for our first.

    Limecello, hope you get that perfect gift for Christmas or the New Year. And GO YOU! on the good gift buying. I’m still sadly lagging but have been too busy to really apply myself. Next week, look out!

    Ellen, a gift certificate to a bookstore works very well for me too. And I suspect everyone here is putting up a me-too hand!

    Heather, LOL at the first-class snoop. I am very tricky with my hiding, although it helps that I’m largely a last-minute shopper and therefore have only a few gifts that require careful hiding. Sorry to hear about your elbow injury and hope that one of your gifts this year is that you’re able to return to your stitching and craft soon.


  8. 8 rachelbailey
    December 9, 2008 at 10:04 pm

    Bron, I love purples too – about three years ago I did purple and gold. Maybe it’s time for that one again. . . Good tip. 🙂

  9. 9 azteclady
    December 10, 2008 at 12:21 am

    (Please don’t enter me in the drawing, I have the book 😀 –and thank you, Bronwyn!)

    I haven’t been able to do this for a few years, but I used to be the Official Gift Wrapper for my mother. With five kids and ten grandkids, plus assorted other relatives and friends gathering at her house for the humongous Christmas Eve dinner every year, we are talking literally hundreds of presents to wrap, and I just loved it!

    Contrary to those of you into color schemes 😀 in my family we save the wrapping paper from one year to the next, plus buying some new paper every year. It’s chaos of color and themes, and it looks so festive under the tree!

    The perfect gift for me? Time with my s.o. to do as we please. Read, watch a movie, talk, take a walk. Just time without worries or other people *coughfamilycough* *ahem*

    I have given a “perfect” gift three times in my life so far:

    First one, with my siblings and my stepfather we bought my mother a new, fancy refrigerator a few years ago. It was a surprise, and when the delivery people got there, at 7:50 AM on the 24th, it was hilarious. My mother had something like 60 people coming for dinner that evening around 8PM, and there was no time to get the new one ready for then, plus it was about an inch too wide for the kitchen door so we had to take the door off… oh man it was just too funny. After the delivery guys left, my mother sat on a stool in the center of the kitchen, just looking at the fridge, for about an hour.

    Second one, that same Christmas, my siblings and I chipped in to get my grandmother a new TV set. Up to then, she had been using a tiny, black and white, NO remote (can you imagine the age of the thing?) set in her bedroom, and we got her a really nice one, much larger and lighter, WITH a remote 😀 It didn’t fit under the tree, so after everyone else had gotten their presents and the kids were busy tearing paper and stuff, my two eldest brothers brought the box in–all wrapped up, of course–for her to open. Her face was just a poem! She spent the rest of the evening petting the box! 😀 It was wonderful.

    The third one was two years ago. I knit my s.o. two sets of muffler and hat (he works in DC–cold!), got him some Mexican lozenges, and copies of LaVyrle Spencer’s Morning Glory and Maggie Osborne’s Silver Lining. All the bases covered! 😀

  10. 10 Maureen
    December 10, 2008 at 12:45 am

    Last Christmas my mother made a photo album for each of the three of us. My mother is picture hog so it was quite a gift for her to give away some of her precious pictures. It had pictures of each of us from birth to graduations to our weddings and then our children.

  11. 11 Crystal B.
    December 10, 2008 at 1:44 am

    My favorite gifts to receive are gift cards for books, pampering products, candles. I try to find out a person’s hobby or what they collect and get them something related.

  12. 12 ruth
    December 10, 2008 at 3:20 am

    I always give something unique and special to that individual which suits them and their personality. I enjoy receiving a wonderful book since it is my favorite form of entertainment.

  13. 13 azteclady
    December 10, 2008 at 5:16 am

    😦 what did I do? I’m under moderation! 😥

  14. 14 Eshani
    December 10, 2008 at 5:35 am

    I think one of the best sentimental gifts to give your loved ones is to give them your time. I genuinely appreciate the time that I get to spend with my family during the holidays, because I don’t get to see my parents and grandparents as much as I would like to, since I don’t live close to them anymore.
    Of course I love buying presents too =) I love that picture you have of all the presents overflowing under the Christmas tree..it’s beautiful!

  15. 15 Minna
    December 10, 2008 at 5:53 am

    It depends on the person to whom I’m giving the gift. And how far they are living. For my penfriends I always try to come up with something that wouldn’t be too heavy (the cost of sending stuff over seas is sheer highway robbery, even when you choose the cheaper option for sending your mail) and something fun.

  16. December 10, 2008 at 6:09 am

    AL–Hmmm, I’ve attempted to release you but for some reason you’re still there. Seriously, I have no idea why your post meandered into the pending file, especially when you’re so very well behaved.

  17. December 10, 2008 at 6:22 am

    One of the best gifts I’ve ever received was actually for my wedding – but it could be adapted for Christmas. It was a wine rack with several bottles of wine in it. Each bottle was labeled with a unique label. For example: First New Year’s on a bottle of champagne; First Fight; First Baby; First Family gathering. I love to share this type of gift – but usually add a label that says: First dinner with Nienke!

  18. December 10, 2008 at 6:57 am

    I freed you, Aztec Lady! No idea what’s happening because there’s been a few caught under moderation… could be because WP have revamped their dashboard?

  19. 19 LJ
    December 10, 2008 at 7:06 am

    Hey Bron. There are two things for me that I would appreciate a day / time at a spa and stuff toys. I still have all my stuff toys as child and dh loves to spoil me all the time when he goes on a trip. He always brings back one with a heart on it isn’t he sweet. Jewllery is a given right ladies. 😀

  20. December 10, 2008 at 7:16 am

    Azteclady, as much as I do love a colour scheme 🙂 I’m all for the festive assortment of colours and wraps under the tree. Your account of perfect gifts given reminded me of what I didn’t say in the post: the gift to the giver, which is that look of perfect joy and delight on the face of the recipient. Pure gold. And your idea of a perfect gift: awwwwww. And who wouldn’t want to spend time with a man with such excellent reading taste.

    Maureen, I adore the gift of photo books like that. My mother gave me one for my last big birthday and included some photos I’d not seen in decades (if ever.)

    Crystal, yes on the gift cards and vouchers related to a person’s favourite pastime rather than a generic one.

    AL, you, moderated??? That could not be possible…



  21. December 10, 2008 at 7:24 am

    Okay, you’ve had me hard out thinking about this Bron and it brought me back to the year we were pretty much broke, struggling with mortgage repayments, single income etc. I used to do a lot of cross stitch in those days and there was a manchester clearance house near where I live. I managed to buy six handtowels, 2xlemon (for my mum to match her bathroom), 2xapricot (for my m-i-l to match her bathroom) and 2xwhite (for my s-i-l cos I wasn’t sure if she would use these in the kitchen or the bathroom.) I nearly went blind in the evenings as I cross-stitched borders for the towels to match the colours and designs in their bathrooms and in my s-i-l’s case I did bands of geese as she had a goose theme in her kitchen. I think everyone was happy with them when they received them that Christmas and I know I got a huge buzz out of seeing them used for years after. Except my s-i-l’s ones. She said they were too pretty to use! 😀 Ah well.

    Nienke, I like the sound of that wedding gift of yours. Tell me, for the bottle for first fight did you use it as a weapon or did you drink it to celebrate the ‘getting over it’ afterwards? 😉

  22. December 10, 2008 at 7:26 am

    Eshani, time is, indeed, the ultimate gift and never more so than in the weeks leading up to Christmas. In our part of the world it is also end of school year with the accompanying end of year events plus we are in the midst of harvest. It’s always the busiest time. And how can it BE only 15 more days??????

    Minna, I hear you on international postage cost. Weight and durability definitely is a factor, else you end up paying far more for the postage than for the gift.

    Nienke, I adore the wine rack and special wines idea (and not only because I adore wines, LOL.) Wow. That is all kinds of perfect.

    Hi Paula. Thanks for liberating AL and grrrr on the WP changes, which threw me right out when I needed to post 2 very quick things at the weekend in very limited time.

    Awww, LJ, what a sweet man. And collectibles–for whatever a loved one likes to collect–always make an excellent gift.


  23. 23 Jane
    December 10, 2008 at 7:45 am

    I love wrapping presents, but I’m not very good at it. I don’t do ribbons because I can never make a nice bow. I use the stick on bows. A scrapbook filled with photos is a nice, priceless gift, but I wouldn’t mind getting something from Tiffany’s.

  24. December 10, 2008 at 8:25 am

    Wouldn’t we all, Jane? 😉

    Yvonne, I bet they loved the work you’d put into that cross-stitching–I know I would, especially since I can’t do pretty sewing. Don’t have the patience or the stamina, let alone the creativity. Which may be why I am so partial to creative work of others.


  25. December 10, 2008 at 8:59 pm

    I have drawn a winner of my book and phone-jewel giveaway and that is Eshani. Congratulations. Email me and I will get your prize in the post ASAP. Thanks to everyone who visited to chat about the perfect gift. Fun…and there is plenty more to be had over the next week.


  26. 26 azteclady
    December 11, 2008 at 4:03 am

    Congrats, Eshani!

  27. 27 Eshani
    December 11, 2008 at 11:55 am

    Yay!! Thank you again, Bronwyn. I’m excited to read the book..
    Thanks Azteclady! I liked your 3 perfect gift stories, they were really sweet =)

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