What does a woman really want? That’s easy: chocolate and back rubs. (I’ve learned that over the past 29 years of marriage.) But, what does a woman really want … for Christmas? If your wife is tough to shop for, here are six tips I’ve learned along the way:
1. Listen to her.
I know, that’s a tough order for most men since we are often guilty of “selective hearing.” I’m talking about listening to her needs for a really good gift. For example, when she says in the summer, “Oh that lamp/painting/dress/purse/watch is so cute!!”, make a mental note. When she’s not looking, type it into your phone: “She wants THIS for Christmas!” If she says during dinner, “I sure wish I had a warm-up jogging suit/new tennis racket/crockpot/book on gardening,” write it down somewhere so you can find it for Christmas.
By the way, here are 25 great ideas for that special lady in your life.
2. Ask family members and close friends.
If you are still stumped, ask those who know her well. I usually ask my daughter sometime in September, “OK, what does Mom really need, and what would just make her day if I bought it for her?” My boys sometimes know; my daughter always knows.
Maybe you can ask your wife’s best girlfriends or her mother. It doesn’t matter. One of those people are sure to give you a good idea.
3. Beware of appliances.
Some ladies like really practical stuff that they can use around the house or in the yard or in their car (my wife loves stuff like that). But you know as well as I do that some of these “practical” things can really backfire.
I know of one guy who bought his wife an electric broom for Christmas! No kidding! I don’t even know what one looks like. He described it as a broom that somehow sucks all the dust up as you sweep. It was probably one of those gadgets you see on TV. His wife cried, and his idea was a real Christmas flop. (They’re still happily married, however. He was really good at apologizing and making up.)
Now, on the other hand, one year I bought my wife a cordless drill. We have maple trees on our property, and she taps the trees in February to make maple syrup! Her old drill was a piece of junk, so I bought her a new, super-duper drill! She was thrilled! And I was king of the mountain that day! So, practical gifts are good and appreciated, but just be careful. You don’t want to send a message that you think of her as the “hired hand” around the ranch.
If you are going to get her that crockpot she has always dreamed of (or a blender or a vacuum cleaner), you had better make sure you follow it up with number 4 on this list.
4. Get something beautiful.
By that I mean get her something that is meaningful and makes her feel treasured. You know what I’m talking about. Women love jewelry, a purse, a watch, a scarf, a dress.
One Christmas I bought my wife a beautiful antique-looking oil lamp. She absolutely loved it and lights it in the evening (it gives our house a beautiful warm glow). In this category, find something that is only for her. The gift says that you spent a lot of thought (not necessarily money) in getting this for her. It belongs to no one else (that means your daughter can’t borrow it!).
How about a trip to a spa? What lady can resist going to a place like this?
5. Don’t forget the stockings!
I usually use the Christmas stocking as the place for “gag gifts” or some small practical stuff. I always put the same presents in her stocking every year: a box of ammunition (we like to go shooting), chocolate, and really good Italian cheese. (Yes, I am a real romantic. Nothing says “love” like a box of ammo.)
Gift cards or small little items (like special soaps or oils) are great for stockings.
6. Wrap it beautifully.
This is where I generally don’t do so well, but when I have had a present professionally wrapped in the past, she really appreciated it. Then put the present(s) under the tree in plenty of time for her to try to figure out what it is. Half the fun is just driving her crazy when she tries to guess what it is!
There’s still time to buy her that special present she will love! Happy shopping!