A Guide to Giving Birthday Gifts

The thing that disturbs me the most about birthdays is that I usually don’t know what birthday gift to give to people. It usually ends up with me spending hours inside the mall and not getting anything—or getting something really horrible, or shopping for clothes/shoes instead.

With that, I have realized that maybe I should stop, think about it, and create a #notetoself guide to giving birthday gifts.

1) Dad – He is probably the easiest person to please on his birthday if you’re a daughter. I’d suggest giving your dad a “Free Hug” coupon or a gift certificate for “One Worry-Free Date Day with Your-Daughter-Who-Has-Grown-Up-Already-And-Spends-All-of-Her-Time-with-Her-Boyfriend”.

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2) Mom – Easy. A spa date with you, or GCs for a facial, or something that’s useful for your home—be it mortar & pestle, or a pail & a dipper. What your mom wants would either be something for rest and relaxation, or something that has actual use. If all else fails, or if there is no other choice, go for flowers and chocolates—yeah, ’cause your dad probably won’t get her those.

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3) Siblings – That shirt that your sibling always borrows? Give it to him/her. That way, the ownership becomes official.

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4) Best Friend – Something to remind him/her about your friendship. A framed photo of you two is old school but would still work. Or maybe you can get him/her something that you’ve always wanted him/her to try—like a new flavor of milk tea, or a DVD copy of your favorite show that he/she has never tried watching. If short on money, no need to give a gift. He/she would understand. Haha!

5) Mortal Enemy – A prayer.

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6) Manager – This is a tough one. What can you give that won’t make you look like you’re an ass-kisser? The best thing I can think of is giving him/her a book and maybe writing a note inside that says something like this: “Hi <Manager>, saw this book while I was at the bookstore and it reminded me of you! Happy birthday! I wish you all the best in this world…and I wish that you could give me a raise too. Hehe! Just kidding (sort of). – <Name Here>”

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7) A Rich Friend – Get him/her something that may not be expensive but is something that is very specific to that friend. Don’t fall into the trap of getting him/her a usual/expected gift that he/she probably owns or has already received. Friend is addicted to the NBA? Get him/her an original copy of NBA2k11 just when it comes out. Yes, you’d usually need a reservation for that ’cause gamers are crazy. Friend likes listening to Boys Night Out? Get him/her Magic 89.9 stickers signed by Slick Rick, Tony Toni, and Sam YG. You might need to pull some strings and get help from some connections but it should be worth it. *coughs immensely*

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8) Meki – Help me accomplish my bucket list and see wish lists here and here.


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