Unexpected Gifts

I’ve had the joy of being on the receiving end of dozens and dozens of unexpected gifts in my adult life. Whether it’s hand-made stuff from my mother-in-law who has cornered the market on Best Personal Gift Ever, or whether it was an accidental headband purchase by my husband who THOUGHT he was purchasing a face buff but ended up being one of my favorite headbands! I’m a lucky girl, is what I’m saying.

But as Christmas creeps up I think of my kids asking for gifts, and how some of my most treasured gifts are ones I didn’t ask for.

IMG_1772 I’ve mentioned my Ewok before – but it was random gift on my 10th birthday. I didn’t ask for it, although I might have asked for a stuffed animal. Yet that little thing went with me EVERYWHERE my ENTIRE EXISTENCE. Even now it is still my favorite pillow, and it goes in my “Go Bag” when we’re under a tornado warning. I tried to recreate this attachment with E, giving him random stuffed animals in his childhood. I even bought him a “new” Ewok on Ebay one year so we could be twins! But he didn’t connect with any of them.

Not a birthday or Christmas seems to go by without me making at least ONE attempt to buy something NOT on the list in an effort to really surprise them and to HOPEFULLY create an unexpected attachment to something they didn’t even know they wanted. I will say that I’ve been suprised by some things my kids have been attached to – like Lego men. Wes will build a lego set and enjoy it, but then he’ll take the PERSON out of the set and carry it around for days. It’s really weird. I wish I could request anyone getting rid of Legos to send us JUST the people from the sets.

In reality – my kids are probably too pampered to become too attached to ONE thing. They have TONS more stuff than I had growing up. So much stuff that Wes has forgotten what all I’ve taken away recently as punishment. He cried that day but has since forgotten.

I have a lot of friends who love me and sometimes treat me to random surprises and this makes ME The spoiled one in the world. I want to be the kind of person that does the same thing to others, and I have to small degrees, but there have been many gray days brightened because of unexpected gifts from friends.

Do you have any stories of Unexpected gifts that left a mark on your life? What about things you’ve given your kids that they didn’t ask for?


  • Bren

    My daughter was given a stuffed hippo when she had to have a small procedure as a 9 month old. She is now 7 and has 5 of them (as soon as she glommed on to it I bought several others!). You can’t pick what will be special for a kid but when they find it, that’s it! My youngest decided a tiny stuffed toy from a happy meal was her “little buddy” and loves it like crazy! I never had a “special” thing as a kid or adult and it almost makes me sad!

  • Bobbie

    My mother died before either of my kids were born. She had made me an Irish knit afghan that I kept on the couch in our family room. I would nurse my son on that couch, and as I burped him over my shoulder he would run his fingers over the “bumps.” My afghan became Joe’s “ba”, which he had to have to sleep with for years. I like to think my mother planned that.

  • Debi Bozich

    You should email the Lego company, I bet they would help you out! Let me know if you do.
    You might start another idea for them to sell separate , how cool!
    Happy Turkey day !

  • Colleen

    My kids are still attached to a few things. My daughter loves “little blankey” a tattered yellow blanket that my Mom knitted for my sister 48 years ago. My son loves “Cuddly Cousins”, a stuffed bear he got from his preschool teacher on Valentine’s Day, a stuffed green bunny (named Bunny) given to him by my daughter to make him stop crying when he was a baby, and Campery, a matchbox RV that he got for Christmas a few years ago.