MY GUIDELINE TO GIFT-GIVING: “It’s my friend’s birthday. How do I know what present to give?”

Welcome… wretched month… for it is October. Shoot me now because I have not one, not two, but MANY close friend’s birthdays. The question that begs is giving a present that is deserving of the person.

You’ve given many and you’ve gotten many. You only have that much money/present-buying capacity… So how do you decide who gets what?

I hope I’m not offending anyone with this post, but here are my personal general guidelines to present-giving!

1) DIFFERENT PEOPLE DESERVE DIFFERENT PRESENTS.

Some friends bring you for a holiday, some buy you a handbag. Some treat you to lunch or coffee, others give you a pat on the back.

They shouldn’t all get the same thing.

I have a good girlfriend who spends a lot of time thinking and crafting the perfect birthday present for me every year, and even though it does not cost her hundreds of dollars, I surely feel her love. Another girlfriend I have not really known all that long bought me one of the nicest gifts I have ever received this year. It was such a memorable surprise and I appreciated it so much – am definitely going to get her something cool for her next celebration.

I tend to treat my friends like how they treat me.

So if all they did on your birthday was write on your wall, I say write it right back.

2) SAME PEOPLE, DIFFERENT YEAR.

Maybe this does not happen to you, but it happens once in a while to me. I have quite a number of friends I love and that I allow into my “inner circle”, but they move in and out at different points of the year. Some are there with you through thick and thin, and then there are others who you hugged and held hands with while crying about a sad situation… and oh you never heard from them again.

Let’s face it, the only constant is change and someone you are close to one year, you might see once in another. The presents should be presented accordingly.

3) AND THEN THERE’S THE PEOPLE YOU LOVE… AND MAYBE THEY SUCK AT PRESENTS.

Don’t hold this against them, and usually this applies to men. I love my Dad so much, but based on his very simple personality he is actually much happier with a $5 shirt than if I bought him a $5000 one. (Maybe he’s worried that it would come from his own credit card?)

In addition, my BFF usually doesn’t give me presents (not even on my birthday! I know right!!!) but she gives me so much more in every other way. So it’s OK!

Sometimes, it’s better to live in a real world, than in a material world.

4) SPEND WITHIN YOUR MEANS.

I try to create or come up with more meaningful and cost-effective gifts when I’m running low on savings for the month, but if I got blessed with a bonus in cash, then you are probably going to get a bigger or better birthday present.

Don’t buy Prada if you have nada.

Unless some hot guy/girl is really totally worth it.


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And… i’m broke! Bah.

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