As Matt and I stood in line at Target (with a baby who would much prefer standing backwards in the cart to sitting forwards) we overheard this conversation between a woman probably in her late 50’s or early 60’s and the checker.
Woman: The daddy of the baby I’m buying this for wants to decorate in monkey’s, but I’m not doing that. (hands over some non-monkey blanket or something).
Checker: They have so much cute baby stuff back there.
Woman: They do! I’m NOT buying monkey stuff for that baby, I’m just not.
Oh-how I wish I’d said something to the woman, but alas I didn’t, and I’m left to say it on my blog. Sorry.
Having gotten married AND had a baby in the last 3 years this is what I have to say about present buying:
1. If it’s on the registry-we want it.
2. If it’s not on the registry-we may NOT want it or need it.
3. If you knowingly buy us something we didn’t want (ie. non-monkey decor, when you know monkey-decor was desired) it will probably be returned. Side note-WHY would you do that to a pregnant hormonal girl? Why would you make a pregnant woman leave home to return something that doesn’t match the nursery? I’m not the norm, I like eclectic, but most of my friends don’t. Most new moms these days like perfectly matching nurseries for their little ones.
4. While it seems boring to get people gifts cards, if you don’t know what to get, just get the gift card. Everyone LOVES them. Those of you who have gotten us gift cards have participated in buying us a digital camera (that was wedding), cloth diapers (which no one but my parents and grandma had the guts to buy me 🙂 ), car seat toys, a car mirror, a changing pad, a changing pad cover and on and on. Thanks and we still have a little leftover for baby #2 (I’m not pregnant).
5. If you use a registry, make sure you have the checker scan it. People often end up with duplicates because of this little detail.
Baby gift buying is very different from wedding gift buying. Here’s how, with so many of us getting married in our late 20’s, it’s not like we’re entering marriage without cooking utensils, towels, or sheets. I mean, most of us can survive if we don’t get all the stuff on our registry. In fact, I’m thinking I had TOO much stuff on mine. However, the average, childless, married couple doesn’t usually have bottles, burp clothes, and strollers sitting around the house for fun. Baby stuff is EXPENSIVE and most of the stuff on the registry is very necessary. (Well some stuff isn’t like wipe warmers, I mean who needs those??? Certainly not my kid! :)).
Just because you don’t like monkeys or cloth diapers or gift cards doesn’t mean you shouldn’t buy those things for other people. It’s not about you and your taste when you buy a gift, it’s about a new mom or a new bride and groom. I’ve always thought that giving is about blessing the receiver with something they will really love. If you are thinking about yourself when buying for others, you are missing the point of buying a gift. AND your present, which you find very tasteful may be re-gifted or returned or sold in a garage sale.
So, lady at Target so opposed to Monkeys (which I, too find ADORABLE) be prepared to meet the mama to be with a courtesy thank you and don’t expect to see your present displayed in the new nursery. It’s just a matter of thoughtfulness.
***I have been extremely fortunate to have very conscientious gift givers (parents, in-laws, sisters, brothers, aunts and uncles, cousins, and friends) in my life. We got everything we needed and so much more. AND those who ventured off our registry got us cool stuff. So, this post is not so a response to my experience, but to the lady at Target today and ladies everywhere, who like to venture off the registry and buy what they like.