How to Buy a Gift She'll Appreciate
Recently I visited a friend who was given a bunch of gifts when she had her first baby. Amongst other things, there were some outfits, shoes and bows she just really didn't like.
"I don't know what we'll do with them, I'll never put them on her," my friend told me.
I admitted that while I'd received my fair share of fashion items for my baby which I would never choose myself, I actually loved all of them. Even the ugly ones (which we use for dress ups rather than going out).
"When you need a pair of shoes and haven't been to the shops to get any, you'll be glad you have them," I said. "And they may just be your baby's favourite choice!"
Most of my kid's outfits have been given to us by other people. And that is something I am so incredibly grateful for. It makes my life so easy, and every day my baby and I get to talk about who gave her each gift. She is a toddler now and demands to only wear ballet dresses, so I'm lucky she has relatives who buy her ballet dresses.
Having said that, I didn't always have this attitude. I remember looking sceptically at gifts in the early days. So here's my advice for buying things they'll actually like for their kids:
1. Take notice of what the mum wears herself. And also what she already dresses her kid in. That will give you some clues. Try to buy what she likes, not necessarily what you like.
2. Ask her what she needs/wants. An easy way to buy a good gift.
3. Buy something you or your own children loved. Write a personalised note about why this was special in your family, and then the mum will see the thought behind the gift.
4. On the same token, write a note or mention to the parent why you thought of the gift you did. Maybe you knew they were going away and it would be cold, or maybe it was something you wish you'd been given or something you used all the time, or maybe it was something you thought the baby would love because of xyz.
You can turn any gift into a meaningful gift if you just reveal the meaning behind it.
So even though I bought this same friend a few cheap items which she probably eyed sceptically when she opened the gift, I later explained they were things we used at different stages with our baby. In fact, they were similar to gifts I'd been given and had underappreciated until I used them or my baby loved them. Now I've noticed, my friend keeps these things in a special place and she even told me she was glad to have something with thought behind it. That's a win!