After making a stop at the Kolache Factory for breakfast, taking a much-needed nap at my grandparents' house and then hitting up Antone's Po' Boys for lunch, my mom, brother and I made our way to the grandiose Memorial City Mall to do some Christmas shopping. My brother and I split from my mom so that we could shop for her and my sister while she shopped for us, and we managed to run into each other only once - at Macy's. Which I'm glad happened because my mom had somehow interpreted the "workout pants" on my Christmas list as any kind of pants with spandex (pocketed, wool, splatter painted, etc.) and I was able to dash in and end the confusion before she purchased something really weirdo. "Look for these brands mom... Nike." What? Gotta rep Oregon.
This afternoon of being good consumers reminded me that I desperately needed to write this post. I had been wanting to write about gifts-ideas ever since I saw the amazing preview of "Oprah's Ultimate Favorite Things" where people in the audience were hugging and bawling their eyes out and carrying on in a really entertaining way, but then I got super busy and it never happened. Till now.
Well, this is a guide you can use next year. Sorry peeps, you have less than 24 hours to get this done and at this point I'm afraid you're screwed. Or just go to Target... they have something for everyone.
Without further ado about nothing, I give you my shopping list inspired by real-life family members:
1. Beer mugs/glasses for my little brother, who just happens to be 21 and likes to drink lots of beer. Thankfully, he's moved on from the days of being the disheveled guy standing in the front lawn of a house party getting soaked by the sprinkler and having beer cans thrown at him (all in good fun)... He now has a serious girlfriend, two jobs, is getting closer to college graduation and can handle drinking with few party fouls. Red plastic cups can now be reserved for beer pong and flip cup...
Left: Immature brother who likes to play Pong all day. Right: Mature brother who likes to hang out with his sister and grandfather.
2. A subscription to Hobby Farms Magazine for my mom. If you knew my mom and her situation currently, you'd freak out that this magazine exists, because it is the perrrrrfect gift for her. Farming is her hobby, literally. I haven't mentioned this yet, but this whole time I've been sitting here typing away in the kitchen of my mom's farmhouse in Chappell Hill, Texas. What once was a weekend place has become her full-time residence, and she is obsessed. And lemme me tell ya, she ain't no Farmville farmer - she's a real farmer, yo! She has a sizable piece of property with a horse, a dog, a cat and lots of cows. Whenever she calls me in an incredibly good mood, I know that "a new calf was born today!!!!" is about to come out of her mouth. And then she always tells me what she named it, and they are pretty awesome names. My favorite name that she ever came up with is "Friendly." Friendly the cow. There's also Purdy, Pedro, J.D. (...who knows where J.D. came from. Is it like, short for the cow's real name?), and I just named "Kima" yesterday - after the ass-kicking lesbian cop on The Wire. (Best. Show. Ever.) My mom said she's a badass little calf, so it totally works...
3. A picnic blanket for my sister, who appreciates all things "classic," like a picnic in the park on a sunny spring day. Probably spawning from our back-to-school shopping at The Gap in elementary school, she has always leaned towards the traditional. For example.... doll collection? Check. A fan of Charles Dickens? Check. Four year attendance at an East Coast private university? Check. Favorite food, chocolate chip cookies? Check. Monet print displayed in her apartment (in Houston's Museum District)? Check. You see what I'm saying? Plus, like I mentioned earlier it's 70 degrees in Houston right now, so she can use the thing year round!
4. A unique piece of art for my in-college, very cool, very smart and very creative cousin who has her very first apartment. Even though this may sound a little Regretsy to you, she is always thinking outside the box: she once took home the lobster tail from her dinner at a seafood restaurant so she could turn it into a pin to wear. Most likely her mom dumped it in the trash as soon as they got home, but her creative ambition alone illustrates what kind of personality she is. ****Okay, my brother just informed me that she actually did turn it into a necklace and wore it until it got moldy... Wow. Obviously she deserves, and would appreciate, art for Christmas. Right, Jenn?
5. Food somethings for the grandparents. Since they live in Houston and I live in a far-away mystical place called Oregon that they've never been to before, they get super excited when I bring them Oregon-made wildflower honey and marionberry jam. Marionberries???? What are those?! A magical edible berry that's grown far far away from Texas! And they happen to taste a lot like blackberries. Wait, they are blackberries? Oh. My bad.
It's the thought that counts, right?