Culture

Wayne and Wanda: First Christmas with a holiday-happy significant other? Gift carefully

Dear Wanda and Wayne.

I've dated a really great woman for about seven months and everything is awesome. But suddenly the holidays are here, and I think I'm in trouble. I have done the bachelor Christmas routine for pretty much my whole adult life, which means minimal gift giving with minimal effort. I usually just end up buying nice bottles of alcohol and restaurant gift cards for everyone I think is gift-worthy. But that's not going to fly with my girlfriend. She's Christmas crazy, has already received a dozen gifts from family out of state and told me she's already found three "perfect gifts" for me. Uh oh. I'm feeling pressure and totally clueless, but one thing I am 100 percent sure of -- if I give her a bottle of Champagne and a Moose's Tooth card, she'll strangle me with some Christmas lights. Can you all give me some giving advice?

Wayne says:

But isn't being a loving boyfriend the best gift of all? Yeah right. That might fly 364 days a year, but not on Christmas, brother. While I would love to be on your booze- and food-giving list, you definitely have to take it up a notch (or 10) for your GF. So Wanda, what does a holiday happy girlfriend want for Christmas?

Wanda says:

While some women want lavish gifts like jewelry or plane tickets, it sounds like your lady is leaning toward sentimentality. This will require some creativity and thoughtfulness, versus a quickie stop at the Anchorage Fifth Avenue Mall. Be original. What could you give her that no one else can? Make her a book of photos from your first seven months together using an app like Shutterfly, or buy her a first-edition printing of her favorite novel. Whatever you land on, the gift needs to show her that you love her and understand her and that she is special and unique. No pressure.

Wayne says:

Now that you've got her a solid and sentimental book, it's time to get her some swoon-worthy bookmarks! Which is totally in your wheelhouse -- you know, gift cards! What are her passions? She's a super-shopper? Get her a Nordstrom gift card. She like to get her hair and nails did? Get her a gift card from her favorite spa. Is she a yogi? Get her a new mat and a 10-class punch card from her favorite studio. She'll think of you every time she engages her Kegel! Good luck, Pseudo Santa!

Wanda says:

No woman will turn away a gift card. It's basically a prepaid shopping pass, and a perfectly lovely gift, as long as it isn't the only gift. Gift cards are impersonal and sterile -- something our bosses give us at the holidays or we give our buddies for birthdays. However, coupled with a thoughtful, sentimental present, including a gift card is a brilliant strategic move. This way, you've covered your bases in case her three "perfect gifts" cost her a pretty penny. Because while it isn't exactly a competition, it kind of is, and she won't be pleased if she's bought you a fancy watch or new fly reel or brand-new skis and you hand her a DIY photo scrapbook.

Want to respond to a recent column, point out a dating trend, or ask Wanda and Wayne for wisdom regarding your love life? Give them a shout at wanda@alaskadispatch.com.

Sponsored