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Atoke’s Monday Morning Banter: It’s The Thought That Counts

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“Giving money is just cold and impersonal”.

This statement sums up the highlight of my weekend. Yeah, I’m boring like that. I’ll tell you about it in a second. So here’s the background. Toun’s childhood friend is getting married in December and she has been racking her brain about what gift would be most appropriate in light of the length of their friendship, the bride-to-be’s repertoire of rich friends, and Toun’s own disposable income. So, she buzzed me for ideas on what she should get this friend. The first question I asked was ‘how close are you guys?’, to which she went on about how they were seat mates in primary school, lived together in CBN quarters in Satellite town. Again, I typed ‘yeah, so how close ARE you? The operative word being ‘are’ – present tense’. She replied that the girl is a BBM contact and they catch up once in a while, they follow each other on Twitter and Instagram. I said “Put some money in an envelope and give it to her before the wedding”.

Thus began the three-pronged conversation about the coldness of giving someone money. I argued that money was better than giving a gift that would be rather useless to the person. She didn’t want to give a gift that would come across as cheap, neither did she want her gift to be tossed aside and remain unused. She reckoned if she went along the lines of making party favours, she would have spent a decent amount of money and she would feel good about herself afterwards.

Here’s an argument for the three types of gifts available.

An actual physical product hand picked by the giver for the recipient – Proponents of this type of gift say that it is something to be cherished and viewed by the recipient. The recipient would always look at the item and a soft/warm bubbly feeling will rise up in their heart for the giver. This is very noble if the giver has a real (not imagined) relationship with the beneficiary. Giving an actual product (if done properly) means it’s very likely that desire, and opportunity will produce 100% success. Both the giver and the receiver would be extremely happy. It’s a case of knowing what your friend wants/likes and just getting it (if you can afford it) Sorry, Nengz, no Pigalles from this corner yet.

However, this method of gifting has been known to go wrong in the absence of a close relationship. A colleague of my cousin once gave her a box of Huggies scented wipes as a gift for the baby. Nice idea, right? Well, the baby reacted badly to all scented products and my cousin never used scented products for her baby. Or the story of a group of friends who bought a washing machine for their newly married mate whose new house didn’t have running water. One would surmise the friends would have visited enough times to know that Abdulrahman used to bring water kegs every Monday. Or even know that those drums in the bathrooms and kitchen were an indication that a washing machine was just dead weight.

Gift Vouchers – Advocates of gift vouchers say you can never go wrong with vouchers. It straddles that thin line between the cold impersonal sense that cash gives, and allowing the beneficiary the choice of acquiring what he/she actually wants. Again, this method works well if you have a good relationship with the recipient. For instance, I know giving Isoken a gift card from Debenhams would work. The girl practically lives on that website. A voucher leaves her options to get whatever she wants from a store she likes. Gift vouchers also usually pocket friendly. Chances are that you won’t have to battle with yourself over the doubts of whether your friend needs one more leather belt.

Cash- Some people say you can never go wrong with cash as a gift, but cash gifts have been known to cause rifts in relationships in the past. In my old office, we usually took a contribution when someone either had a baby, got married, or was leaving. (Ah, that’s true… they didn’t take a contribution for me when I was leaving Ati and Sols… I see you) Anyway, the usual style was to use the contribution to buy gifts for the person in question. As time went past, we got lazy; trying to think of creative gifts for colleagues became such a chore. “Oh Mr. S likes the law… let’s buy him books on commercial transaction”./”Miss B loves Manchester United, let’s get her a personalized T-shirt”. We ran out of steam and after a while even the recipient knew to just expect an envelope of cash. I mean, you can only buy so many Arsenal Jerseys for a colleague who has been in the same office with you for 3 years.

The downside of cash is knowing the balance between just right and a tad insulting. But, you should never look a gift horse in the mouth so ‘no amount is too small for the work of the ministry’.

There’s an extra category. Look at it as a bonus Nigerian category. It’s the option Toun wants to go for. The sharing of party favours as a form of giving to the celebrant is another option. While I don’t understand how giving out engraved towels to guests at my grand father’s burial is a gift to me, but I am told it works. I believe the centralized placing of your name boldly as the giver of the gift automatically makes it about you the giver. ‘Rest in Peace Uncle James. Shared by Mary & Martha – maternal cousins of the dearly departed’. (Just in case guests were unsure what branch of the family tree the nice fluffy towels came from.

In all of this, it’s the thought that counts right?

What’s your preferred mode of gifting?  What do you do when you receive a gift that you have absolutely NO use for? I usually try to regift stuff like that. But you have to have a methodical system if you want to do this. Don’t forget to write down who gave you what. It would be super awkward if you gave your friend’s son the Ben 10 watch they gave your own son on his 5th birthday. Do you graciously say ‘thanks’ when you receive something you don’t want? Or would you try to sell it and receive value for the gift instead of a Pashmina shawl or a pair of boxers.

Finally, when you give, do you give FOR YOU? Or do you give FOR THE RECIPIENT? Think about it!

Have a fabulous week ahead. Remember, it’s in the littlest things… like bringing a smile to someone’s face., a hug, a cup of coffee, a kind word and of course gifts ever so often. Oh look… it’s almost Christmas! (Or at least we can hope)

Peace, love & carrots (Because those babies are quite nutritious)

Toodles!

Photo Credit: Dreamstime | Paul Moore

You probably wanna read a fancy bio? But first things first! Atoke published a book titled, +234 - An Awkward Guide to Being Nigerian. It's available on Amazon. ;)  Also available at Roving Heights bookstore. Okay, let's go on to the bio: With a Masters degree in Creative Writing from Swansea University, Atoke hopes to be known as more than just a retired foodie and a FitFam adherent. She can be reached for speechwriting, copywriting, letter writing, script writing, ghost writing  and book reviews by email – [email protected]. She tweets with the handle @atoke_ | Check out her Instagram page @atoke_ and visit her website atoke.com for more information.

53 Comments

  1. miss pynk

    November 3, 2014 at 10:45 am

    Cash is king. Give it after the wedding as people still have some bills to settle. Even a gift of n5k isn’t too small. I just got married less than 2 weeks ago, i got microwaves as in plural, while i am grateful, 5 microwaves are useless to me, likewise the souvenirs that were shared on our behalf. Few people took the time out to visit mega plaza and buy things off our registry.

    The couple is just starting out together, they need to buy a few things, better to give them cash and let them go out and get that which is important to them.

    • Berry Dakara

      November 3, 2014 at 12:03 pm

      Woot woot! We got mostly monetary gifts which really helped us. We also had a registry, but nobody took advantage of it.

      If I was doing the gift giving though, I’d like an option or range of products that the recipient would like to get, and then use that as a guide. Although these days, if it’s a wedding event, the easiest thing for us to do is donate the cake or give a very hefty discount, and knock that off the budget for the couple.

      If it’s a birthday, I’d either send a cake too, or buy something I know/think the person likes.

      berrydakara.blogspot.com

    • mrs.O

      November 4, 2014 at 2:51 pm

      lool..but of course Mrs. Cakes.. we see what you did.. @ cake..:p

  2. Dora the explorer

    November 3, 2014 at 10:55 am

    When I give, I give for me; Humans are insatiable.. But very often I’m sure the recipient would be alright because “the me” would rather give appropriate or not give at all.. teehee!

  3. Personal Assistant

    November 3, 2014 at 10:58 am

    Atoke what did you receive for your birthday?????
    Well my very good friend is getting married and the only way I can think of helping is by sharing some souvenirs on that day. For her sake I will head to the dreaded ejaolonibu (ebute ero) market.
    For me the occasion warrants the gift.
    For new born baby, its money in an envelope. Its easier for me. I am still trying to understand midi abi mini diapers.
    Before, for my regular friends’birthday, maybe a nice body spray, a top, slippers etc till the day i received charger as a birthday gift my eyes clear. So now its I give unto you what you bestow on me.
    When I receive a gift I dont really need, I keep it because i know one day I or someone close to me might need it.
    In my office if you are waiting for something from the numerous stingy staff there, fowl go grow teeth. Some idiot in the office will still ask why you are sharing coke and fanta instead of malt drink.

    • Rosey

      November 3, 2014 at 11:33 am

      That’s funny

    • TANTRA

      November 3, 2014 at 11:37 am

      Very funny girl, you are. Which one is charger? hahahahaha. Such people should be called ONYINYE.

  4. Mz Socially Awkward...

    November 3, 2014 at 11:18 am

    Atoks, let me confess that this morning, I had to delve into the “perfume stash” (most girls will identify with this drawer that houses all the inevitable bottles of perfume that you continually receive as gifts) because it was time to crack open a new scent and I came across a bottle of Cerruti 1881 a friend gave me earlier this year. The first thing I thought was, “Hmmm, maybe I should regift this one” because it isn’t a scent I’d ordinarily ever buy for myself (it reminds me of my mother, circa 1998). However, I remembered her joy in telling me that she’d picked it out especially with me in mind and for that reason, I knew it would be wrong to give it away so I’m now wafting around with the smell of nostalgia upon me.

    As for prezzies that I give out, well this is a very opportune banter topic because I am at my wits end about what to give my parents for Christmas. I’m of the unshakeable belief that my mother doesn’t need anything (shopaholic of life) and my dad’s possibly the hardest person to buy gifts for being the laid back gent that he is. I love to give gifts that light up people’s faces but it gets harder every year, mehnnn…

    Additionally, my godson turns 2 on Tuesday (T-bobo!! My joy!!) and I went clothes shopping for him over the weekend but I’m now wondering whether to give him something more tangible. So, for the mothers in the house, would you appreciate gifts of clothing for a young child or would you prefer that people give a cash donation into the child’s early savings account?

    • D

      November 3, 2014 at 2:48 pm

      If I may, can I suggest, putting some money towards like a get away for your parents even if it is only 1 night at the latest hotel in Nigeria or an airline voucher. We have the same problem with our parents and they are constantly working although they are supposed to be retired so we give them “a break” that they might otherwise not think they need and away from family and friends just the 2 of them. This is just an idea you know your parents better than I do.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 3, 2014 at 3:32 pm

      You’ve given me a really good idea with the “night away” gift. My mother will be all up for it but my dad’s a different story (as they won’t be serving his wife’s okazi soup in the hotel). However, it’s something I can maybe look into and tweak to suit. Many thanks! 🙂

    • TA

      November 3, 2014 at 2:52 pm

      My mom too, shopaholic of life. She has a pre-paid line so I buy like N20k worth of airtime for her once in a while. I recently got her a silk green scarf I got from Woolworth recently. and she loved it.If you get money,you fit buy her Hermes scarf instead. Lol! Scarves are always always needed.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 3, 2014 at 3:35 pm

      Awww, the airtime top-ups are really thoughtful and practical and the same time. See, na that kain gift wey go fit my mama (and she’s got more scarves than I can wrap her around in… I dey even thief dem from time to time). Again, another idea I can tweak (maybe buy a call + MB bundle for her media devices as part of her overall gift). Thanks! 🙂

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 3, 2014 at 3:35 pm

      *at the same time.

  5. cleo

    November 3, 2014 at 11:23 am

    for me it depends on the person and the occasion. For close friends and family i pick out classic gifts like mugs, china ware plates, books/bible, fancy trays etc. For weddings i love to give cash. One can never have enough cash.

  6. baboushka

    November 3, 2014 at 11:24 am

    I don’t know how practical this is to the Nigerian environment but for wedding gifts if you need them – because nowadays most couples have been living on their own and have fully furnished houses and kitchens – is to register at your favourite stores for what you need so guests can get you exactly what it is that you want. Vouchers are great another great idea is to have a honeymoon kitty so if you don’t need gifts then people can put their “cash in envelopes” into a honeymoon kitty for your dream honeymoon. I was just having this debate with someone over the weekend. I don’t get the whole Nigerian souvenir gift thingy from friends and relatives I once saw a towel on my friends bathroom floor oo floor not even hanging from some aunty and uncle on the occasion of her sisters wedding lol These people were using gift to wipe their feet. I used to be the type of person whenever I travelled I brought back stuff for my close cousins and friends that was until I spotted a painting that I bought from far away lands for one of my cousins in her pantry hanging all the way up where no one could even see it behind a locked door in the pantry! I go to my friends house only to see a wall hanging I got her from another far away land hanging in her laundry room that was the day I respected my bank account and stopped buying things for people. These days when I travel and they ask so what will you get me I reply send your list and deposit money in my account and I will bring it it for you. Did I mention that these people travel too and no one has ever bought me even a key ring and yet I see other relatives we know saying so and so got me this from such and such place. I slowly activated my selfish mode and my bank account thanks me for it it was hard because I am the type of person who travels to the next town for work and if I see something I know you like I will buy it for you no strings attached but I had to do it.

    • baboushka

      November 3, 2014 at 11:51 am

      Or donate the cash to a charity organisation let your wedding be a blessing to someone else.

    • Que

      November 3, 2014 at 12:18 pm

      Just be sure the couple isnt the charity case you need to be focusing on…

    • baboushka

      November 3, 2014 at 12:38 pm

      lol this cracked me up this goes for those super rich couples who clearly don’t need presents. The charity comment was in continuation to a long ass comment that I made but it looks like Atoke is frying akara with my comment.

    • mrs.O

      November 4, 2014 at 2:57 pm

      lol..but you know very few Nigerians appreciate paintings.. I think I know only two people who have “love for paintings”.. a friend and my boss.. Even one painting I got from..(cant remember who gave me) is lying in one corner in the house as hubby hasn’t gotten around to drilling a hole to hang it..

  7. TANTRA

    November 3, 2014 at 11:40 am

    If we are very close, I ask you what you would prefer. If I can afford it, I will buy them for you. I don’t give cash but I think I will tow that line now. If you give me what I don’t need, I will give it to another person as a gift. Maybe the person will need it. If not, we will keep passing it till it gets to the manufacturer (LOL).

  8. TA

    November 3, 2014 at 11:58 am

    As someone stated above, cash is king! It is not cold and impersonal jor. Ask the person complaining of cash as cold if she gets a cheque for N100,000 or more ,will she still think it is impersonal? Aha,there you are. Lol! You can rarely go wrong with cash jare.
    Well, if the gift recipient is really close to me, I would give what I know you really need. I give not for me but for the person because I know that the feel good in it for me comes from the satisfaction that I have been of tremendous help. Take for instance, a very close friend was getting married ,I had heard her lament over and over again about her car which was having battery issues. I took the car for servicing and bought her a new battery,in all I spent about N25k She said it was one of the best wedding gifts she got. 🙂 Another very dear friend who was getting married was really low on cash ,so she came to me for a loan to add to what they already had for their new accommodation. I thought about it and decided to just ‘dash’ her the money,it was not exactly convenient for me at the time as I had to soak garri till my salary was paid for the next month. Lol. But I was glad to be of help sha. Another really close friend had a new baby, because she has some money and was thus able to afford everything ,we thought it would be more practical to put money together and just open a bank account for the baby. Which is what we did. If we are not that close, like you are a colleague. I may just enclose (N3,000 or N5,000, 3 for male,5 for female) in an envelope for you. Lol

    • Bobosteke & Lara Bian

      November 3, 2014 at 12:42 pm

      Okay, I’ll bite. why 3k for boys and 5 for gals?

    • baboushka

      November 3, 2014 at 1:14 pm

      I was with you until I saw the different rates for boys and girls children! In this day and age na wah oo!

    • missnk

      November 3, 2014 at 2:24 pm

      lol baby girls are more expensive to take care of now, at least that”s what my dad tells me

    • TA

      November 3, 2014 at 2:36 pm

      @ Bobosteke & babouska, Simply because men do not spend as much as women for weddings celebrations. hehehe! Women get their hair done, pedicure, manicure, nails,facials, all sorts of pampering, you know the drill nah. Guys only need to shave and cut their hair. Lol! I know it is gender discrimination but am not sorry one bit. Nor vex for me abeg. 🙂

    • Ivy

      November 5, 2014 at 10:43 am

      You are a very good and wise friend

  9. AMAKA

    November 3, 2014 at 12:01 pm

    When I give a gift, its usually for the person rather than for me. I try to look for items that are very important and that one can never have too much of. When I am not so sure of the person, then it is cash to the rescue. A very friend got married last month and I got her a complete set of Non stick pots, pans and spoons. A woman can never have too many pots, pans and coolers(so says my mom as she still has coolers from her wedding of 32years ago). When its for a new born baby, I usually give cash. Learnt this from my sister six years ago after she had her first child. She kept complaining of how people were buying gifts of clothes, diaper, milk etc for the baby and nobody gave her money, that she needed the money more than all the gifts..

  10. Ephi

    November 3, 2014 at 12:08 pm

    It’s gift card all the way for me. That way, the person has the flexibility to buy what they want.

    • zeno

      November 3, 2014 at 6:26 pm

      I’d rather give cash that gift cards. Gift cards are soooo useless! No flexibility beats CASH.

  11. Que

    November 3, 2014 at 12:11 pm

    Oooo gifts… I try to think of who I am gifting to….gifting is always about the recipient. I am generally lazy bout hunting lovely gifts, so my emergency response is usually a piece of jewellery/desserts/money. For closer friends I invest in thinking of something or an experience they can benefit from…..it gets more personal from offering my time and skills if necessary, to hand written notes, scented candles, spa date, impromptu party or a good timeout..etc….Cash can also work if I know they can use it.

    As far as gifting to close pple, I gave up on my mum….she’s d classic case of wondering what to buy for someone that has most things….I learnt after seeing most gifts laying fallow…so now I just go with more books, classic movies or offer to be her cook/servant!

    All in all I try to make it special enough in line with d occasion. And no, I dont believe in sharing souvenirs on the celebrants behalf…..its just impersonal and attention seeking to me; except of course it is in addition to a more personal gift.

  12. creamy

    November 3, 2014 at 12:17 pm

    Cash is the best gift ever, giving out souvenirs at weddings is a nice thought but how does it help the couple? I saw so many souvenirs been given out at my wedding but did any1 remember to keep for the couple NO! not that I mind it just adds to the kpanti in the house anyway.

  13. Bobosteke & Lara Bian

    November 3, 2014 at 12:38 pm

    I either ask people point blank what they would like me to get for them as a gift or investigate your likes. if I get to ask, you get to name a couple and I pick one or its monetary equivalent. E.g. my colleague is getting married soon. I asked what she wanted and she said she is yet to get shoes for her dress and traditional wedding. I picked the one for her wedding dress ‘cos that means I wont have to buy a purse and is consequently cheaper for me. This beats whatever souvenir or other dreamed up gift I may have gotten.

    If you are someone who is extremely comfortable, I investigate your likes and subtly probe with innocent questions to know what you need at that moment. E.g. I knew someone who loved Fanta; not just ordinary Fanta but Fanta in breakable bottle which he rarely had access to. I bought some for him. His gleeful smile and his declaration that it was the best gift ever, and i knew i was spot on.

    This also works for bosses as well; people who I cannot ask point blank. I had a boss who loved attention beyond any monetary or material gift. I got so many people in our organization to call and go to his office to wish him happy birthday along with the obligatory card and cake. He strutted around like a well fed Cheshire cat that day like a jolly good fellow.

    • TA

      November 3, 2014 at 2:40 pm

      LoL! I have one of those bosses too, you know the sort that loves attention. His wedding anniversary is in a few days, now I have an idea what to do. Thanks for the tip.

  14. Neo

    November 3, 2014 at 1:09 pm

    Lol at giving someone charger! Probably bought in traffic sef. I love to give and receive gifts, think it’s my ultimate love language. I just like the feeling from seeing someone happy cos of the gift I gave them. I think it’s just about getting to know someone to understand, if u don’t know the person that we’ll cash is ok esp as gift cards aren’t common here. In doubt ask ur friends what they want, getting someone something useful shd be more important than the element of surprise nes pas?

  15. ThatAbiribaBae

    November 3, 2014 at 1:58 pm

    Hmmm interesting topic.

    If i’ll gift you at all, will depend on if I want to and/or if i can, not on our closeness. For example, I can decide to gift an old classmate that I’m not even close to and not gift someone that I spoke to yesterday. Yes i can be that weird.

    Gifting for me is ALL and SOLELY about the recipient. First off, I’d like to say that I am a very attentive friend. I don’t think i’ve ever gifted a wrong gift. Me i always ask o “do you like it? cos if you don’t we can return and get you something else” I know they are not ‘washing’ me by saying they like it, cos trust me, they use it that very day or the next and send pictures.

    A very dear friend was getting married some months back, and i already knew what I was getting her. But along the line, she kept compalining on how ‘broke’ she was. The gift was meant to come as a surprise (I always do surprise, except i can’t help it) but then due to consistent complaints of ‘brokeness’, i had to ask her if she’d prefer cash or the gift. She said cash. Because i knew how important the gift was and how she will appreciate it better, i had to add ‘are you sure? cos the gift its the camera you’ve been singing all along’ my chic scream ‘abeg the camera o’. Truth be though, the money i would have given wouldn’t be anywhere close to the camera cost.

    Generally speaking, for weddings, i think its best the couple have a list and you pick from there. Saves unncessary and unwated gifts! Thats a gap, Nigerian wedding vendors need to fill ASAP!

    Another thing I give are engraved gifts. Oh! how i love them! I’ve received tears of joy and non stop screams just for such gifts (that’s all the satisfaction i need really).

    Advice: Learn your friend/recipient! Giving the right and appropriate gift to a friend you know is so much easier and fun!

  16. TA

    November 3, 2014 at 2:35 pm

    Simply because men do not spend as much as women for weddings celebrations. hehehe! Women get their hair done, pedicure, manicure, nails,facials, all sorts of pampering, you know the drill. Guys only need to shave and cut their hair. Lol! I know it is gender discrimination but am not sorry one bit. Nor vex for me abeg. 🙂

  17. D

    November 3, 2014 at 2:36 pm

    I think people misuse the phrase “it’s the thought that counts” Why? because someone that hates cooking gets a frying pan set or like for my wedding I got one of those 555 cups as in for real. I would rather you did not get me anything. When you say the thought counts that means the gifter actually put some thought into it. Did not just walk into a store on their way in and grabbed the first thing they could lay their hands on. At that point what’s the thought being put into it that we are having trying to count. I tell people good rule of thumb for gifting, if you know the person it is sometimes easier to know what to give, I personally try as much as possible to stay away from giving people that mean a lot to me monetary gift but for people like my dad/brother, there is really nothing I can afford that they cannot buy or bought for themselves so for them I go for vouchers. I bought my brother starbucks voucher last Christmas and o boy you could tell it meant sooo much to him, he is an avid coffee drinker. I would however never get him a coffee maker because he has one already, probably a better one than I can afford too. For people I do not know, one I tell people please please have a registry because one it helps me get you something you actually want/need and if not $$$ is the way to go. I know one might say there is no thought process going into that but I beg to differ there is, my thought is let Mr or Ms Smith get what they want instead of getting something they will look at in disgust (worst case scenario) or something they will re-gift or return to get the $$$ back anyway. I also always add a gift receipt just in case I am wrong. My point is if it is truly the thought that counts then you have to see that some thought was actually put into the gifting process.

  18. TA

    November 3, 2014 at 2:48 pm

    My mom too, shopaholic of life. She has a pre-paid line so I buy like N20k worth of airtime for her once in a while. I recently got her a silk green scarf I got from Woolworth recently. and she loved it.If you get money,you fit buy her Hermes scarf instead. Lol! Scarves are always always needed.

  19. TA

    November 3, 2014 at 2:54 pm

    @ BN, my comments are all over the place. Comments that are replies to previous comments. Wetin dey happen nah?

  20. D

    November 3, 2014 at 3:17 pm

    Since this is about gifting, I hope this is not an Aunt Bella topic but since it is about gift, I thought I should share this story, I always try to study my recipient and give them what they need especially if I know you. I had a guy that I worked with a while back, we still work for the same company but now in different locations, when he got married I got him and his wife something that they needed but did not think to put on their registry, to say they appreciated it would be an understatement. Recently, he was visiting my office so I invited him over for lunch and he saw me putting together a care package for one of my hubby’s co-worker who just moved to the country and was having a baby. This was a need that I wanted to meet for this family only the husband is working. This guy (my co-worker) asked who the package for I was already irritated by that question (I mean it is none ya, none of ya business). Suddenly following day he tells him his wife is pregnant I say congratulations and was planning getting them something but did not say anything, I was putting some thought into it actually, i.e looking at my account balance and what I can get this people that will mean something to them without breaking the bank and then this dude now spoil the whole thing by asking me few weeks later what I am getting his baby? Ok…. for me that just left a bad taste in my mouth. Are you for real??? I was not involved in the baby making process, I was not consulted when you and your spouse decided to have a baby so which one be my own??? Well, fast forward a few months later, I saw the dude was away from work for awhile so I sent him a text asking if he was ok or if he had left the company, only for dude to tell me wife had had baby and asking me again for baby gift. I have decided I am not getting him anything, he now believes he is somehow entitled to my gifts, Just saying getting gifts from people regardless of your relationship with and to them or what you think their financial status is, is not a right!!! I have heard of people getting mad because so and so did not get them anything. I mean do you know what’s going on in their live that they are not privy to? Please don’t ask me for a gift because that’s a guarantee that you will be getting NADA!!!!

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 3, 2014 at 3:43 pm

      Hahahaha! I’m laughing because I have a friend who does that – i.e. asking you what you’re getting for her birthday – but she’s so outrageously candid about her own “taxing” that we don’t even bother to get mad at her anymore. Plus she’s totally the baby of my group of friends so I treat her like I’d treat a cheeky little sister and just start preparing her gift way in advance.

      A real sweetheart in every other way but a complete diva on the 21st of Jan.

  21. blah blah

    November 3, 2014 at 3:38 pm

    1. Weddings – I buy aso ebi worth 15 – 20k. If I am a bridesmaid and I have to pay it’s anywhere from 15 – 40k. I contribute to your hen night and bridal shower. You still want me to buy you a gift?! Please don’t be an ole.
    2. Birthdays – you invite me to your birthday dinner and make me pay for my meal or we go clubbing and you are not providing drinks. You still want me to buy you a gift?! That’s just baby ole-ing.
    3. Baby shower/just had a baby – I don’t mind I loooove babies. They are precious.
    4. Deaths – cash in envelop/souvenir.
    As I have gotten older I have stopped giving gifts. Maybe it’s because I never get anything useful – from address books to cheap smelling perfumes. I only give my closest friends gifts – cash. Buy what you like abeg. Or tell me what you want. And I don’t expect anyway. When my birthday rolls along, buy me a sexy bottle of wine and i’m good. They know this.

  22. Tonia

    November 3, 2014 at 4:35 pm

    i hate to give people what they don’t need and for dat reason, I’d rather ask dem wat they need, stylishly tho,, on my last bday, my frnd askd wat I wanted nd I said a laptop, I have a laptop tho but an official one so I needed a personal one, he just said hmmmm which means it was gon be a lil bit inconvenient for him but on my bday he gave me a laptop nd even sent some money to my account to take my frnds out…DAT WAS IT FOR ME… dat was d sweetest thing ever, I personally learnt from dat so even if its a lil bit awkward, I’ll always ask my frnds first so I don’t end up like @baboushka lol

  23. Chidinma Eke

    November 3, 2014 at 5:51 pm

    Cash all the way for me; before or after the event. Next to that is; gift cards.

  24. Bliss

    November 3, 2014 at 6:15 pm

    One of my best friends had been singing for years about how she wanted a certain appliance. Boooy was it expensive!! As in couple hundreds of $$$. Her last birthday came and passed and nobody in the clique bulged on her request. Christmas, she dropped hints again and we even did the secret Santa thingy, and she still didn’t get her appliance. After that, I noticed she never mentioned anything about it again. I’m guessing she had just given up hope that anyone would gift It to her, esp with the price. So, this year when her birthday was approaching, I really didn’t know what to give her. I went online and looked at that appliance for months. I was like dam!! I will never be able to afford this for her given my very lean budget. Fast forward to her birthday morning, I still hadn’t bought her anything. I thought cash would be too disconnected given our closeness. So I went to a local appliance store to find a cheaper version of what she wanted. Lo and behold I saw the exact brand she wanted and it was marked down $175. Boy was I excited. I literally kinda cried as I explained my situation to the manager. He said I must really love my friend to give her that gift. I said I did. He offered me an additional $49.99 discount and then gift wrapped and carried it to my car for me. Look at God!! I drove like a maniac down the freeway straight to her house. You needed to see the shock on her face when she saw the gift!! She couldn’t stop saying thank you. She hugged me crying and telling me how much she had wanted that appliance. I like how every time I enter her kitchen I can see it beautifully displayed on hercounter, and boy does she use it. Every time she cooks something with it, she always keeps my own, and she never fails to remind me that it was mixed with the appliance I got her. What did I learn from this experience? Thought and sacrifice!! One of the most expensive gifts I ever bought, but I don’t regret it one bit.

    • slice

      November 3, 2014 at 7:58 pm

      that is such a beautiful story. i felt like i was in your car driving to give it to her.

    • Mz Socially Awkward...

      November 4, 2014 at 1:53 pm

      Awwwwww…. that’s a warm, fuzzy moment, right there. 🙂 Sounds like you got a Kitchen Aid food processor or some other high-end brand and I’m “jelox” of your friend because even that $175 wey you spend sef (by the way, a complete STEAL if it was a KA!!) for make some people comot mind from buying the thing.

      She’s got a great friend in you..

  25. shay shay

    November 3, 2014 at 8:13 pm

    In receiving…A close friend got me a pair of trousers as a pressie… it smelt of mould. Like its been in a box under the bed for like 3 years. I mean she could have taken me out to lunch and it would have made more sense or just chill and have girl talk or sumn. In giving… i once gifted a very rich friend who has everything/nothing I can afford to gift him, a cigarette lighter with his name engraved on one side and ‘smoking kills’ on the other (lol). of course he smokes and he absolutely loves it and i spent like $100. which wasn’t so bad for a Mr Richie rich

  26. @babygiwa

    November 3, 2014 at 8:15 pm

    @Bliss, wow that is really cool. You are a good friend. I like giving my friends gifts esp on their birthdays but they didn’t give me for my last birthday so I’m not giving them too. I’m not a ‘darosha’ biko, still living on a monthly allowance. I can’t kill myself

  27. Smiley

    November 3, 2014 at 9:29 pm

    These days I give as I have been given. My closest friend had her bday last year and I gave her a box of cupcakes with her pics monogrammed on it. Also spent my lunch break with her longer than I should which earned me a shout from my boss. My own bday???? She have me an ink-stained slippers!!!!!! Badly stained. I was upset! Never said a thing to her. Very few understand the concept of giving. But since then my concept of our ‘friendship’ changed. I’m not doing dime this year

  28. ada

    November 4, 2014 at 11:42 am

    @Bliss I had tears sting my eyelids as I read that. That was really nice.

  29. divea

    November 4, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    hello
    please i need assistance on the perfect gift to give a friend. We’ve not been close for some time but he means a lot to me. His birthday is this weekend and I’m at loss of what to get for him.

    • Ivy

      November 5, 2014 at 11:02 am

      Take him on a spa date, buy him a wrist watch, engraved towel from E’sorae. a polo shirt, tie and cufflinks or his favourite perfume or body spray. Either of any should work, you could even add cupcakes or a cake, smoothie and salad to any of the chosen ideas. Got 3 cakes on my bday this year but a guy i had just met had the presence of mind to send me pizza which i really appreciated cuz i hadn’t eaten all day and just seeing too many cakes filled me up & cuz i love food…lol.

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