Gifts for Moms

Dear yayas,

I’m a dad in need of a mom’s perspective…getting gifts for my wife is hard. She doesn’t like surprises. How do I know what is the best gift for a wife/mom? I struggle with this every year. I usually wait until the last minute and I’m trying not to do that this year.
Any ideas about how to go about this because I do not want her to be disappointed with Christmas morning arrives. 

– Out of Ideas

How about planning a special day with her in which the gift is the experience and time together? For example, ask her if she would rather have a kid free day at the spa and you surprise her with a dinner date at her favorite restaurant. Or maybe an afternoon hiking, which you surprise her with a romantic picnic lunch or happy hour. I suggest allowing her to lead with making a choice, but you add an element of surprise during or after. – Bernie

Great question! I love that you’re putting thought into your wife’s gift already. If you want to surprise her with an experience, I highly suggest asking her if she’d prefer massage, yoga pass, romantic evening out, (you get the idea)…but then planning it for her instead of gifting a gift certificate to a place. For example, she says massage—you set up the appointment (Hint: request something extra like hot stones or a hand massage) as well as maybe get her some sparkling water (to stay hydrated!) and a new dress/bracelet/whatever her “thing” is. If you want to surprise her with an item, ask her to make you a list of some things she’d really like to have and choose from that list. You can always add an accompanying gift that compliments her choice. For example, she says new pajamas, gift a lux robe and bath salts with it. You’re already ahead of the rest of the dads out there—have a wonderful Christmas! – Cortney

You’re already on the right path by planning ahead this year! I can tell you the things I would like, but they may be different than what your wife would prefer. Go with what you know she likes and maybe try to kick it up a notch? If she loves going out, do dinner and tickets to a show. If she just wants to stay in, order some amazing take-out and a favorite movie from your dating days. I’m definitely more of an “experience” kind of gift person than a tangible gift. Also keep an eye out for something that she likes but doesn’t indulge in, like maybe a manicure or massage. Putting extra thought into it should give you a great result! – Diana

Love that you’re pre-planning! My advice would be to just straight up ask her what she wants AND if she likes to be surprised. I’ve been with my husband for 8 years…I’m always thrilled when he asks what I want instead of guessing. Or ask her best friends for ideas! They might have some insight. Again, kudos to you for reaching out! – Lori Beth

Dear Out of Ideas, You are so thoughtful and I love that you are already thinking about Christmas. If your wife does not like surprises I would ask her to send you a list of her top 10 items. Then I would pick one of those items or use it as inspiration to get her something she might not expect. If you don’t want to ask her directly maybe try to think back to a special memory or your favorite trip. Is there something that you could recreate in some way? Or a gift that is based on that special place you visited? Gifts can be tricky but I’m sure you will find something your wife will love. – Nadia

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