A Christmas StoryBy Michelle L. Dozois for HowAboutWe
We asked, you answered: Here's a roundup of some amazing gifts our readers have received from, or given to, their significant others. Check them out and get inspired. (And tell us yours in the comments!)
"I'm an actor and all-around huge theater nerd; I also used to work in a rare books library at my college and love old books like nobody's business. For Christmas last year, my boyfriend got me the complete works of Shakespeare published by Yale in 1964 - each play is its own individual book, beautifully bound, and I have them all lined up on a shelf. The collection is missing Othello, so we get to look for it together at used bookstores, flea markets, etc."
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"One Sunday, my boyfriend rented a car and took me on a surprise adventure to a winery where we ate, drank, and crushed grapes with our feet - item #17 on my bucket list! Turns out he had noticed my bucket list on my fridge and planned the whole day to help me cross off an item. I take my bucket list very seriously, and was so moved that he gave me a gift that was so personal."
"When I was in high school (and 'straight'), I wanted to give my 'girlfriend' the best Valentine's Day ever, so I put a Little Mermaid (her favorite movie!) bubble blower in her locker that surprised her with bubbles, and chocolates, etc. Then I filled her car with red balloons that - when popped - revealed tiny notes of things I liked about her. Then I recorded an album of her favorite love songs - all performed by me on piano.
God, I was so gay."
"When my husband and I first moved in together, we were kind of poor, so we made a deal to use birthdays and holidays to buy larger, house-related items (think, a mattress, new TV, etc). One year on my birthday, as we were lying on our new birthday mattress, my husband handed me a small box. Inside was a year membership to Barnes and Noble-the kind that entitles you to coupons and discounts. I believe that a membership cost $25, but I was able to treat myself to more books than ever that year! And every time I bought one, he would say "Happy Birthday!" It was such a thoughtful little gesture that lasted me the whole year through."
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"In college, my boyfriend surprised me for my birthday with a day trip. He told my roommate to have me get dressed in comfortable outdoor clothes and then picked me up, without telling me where we were going. He drove me to a nearby creek where there was an overturned canoe on the side. He had borrowed the canoe from somewhere at the school and had gone earlier in the day to leave a picnic basket under it complete with wine, blanket, snacks, etc. We just paddled along this creek on a sunny, December day (in North Carolina) and ate and drank. It was beaaaaaautiful and crazy awesome."
"My ex-wife and I both loved to travel. Our first year together included road trips, weekend getaways, work travel out of state and day trips around the area. She always took a lot of pictures and I never thought much of it. Our first Christmas together she surprised me with a small, very thick picture album that chronologically detailed our relationship to that point. I had already seen all the photos, but it was the effort she put into having them duplicated and then putting it together that really mattered. The first year was our happiest time together. Although we've since divorced, that photo album remains the single most treasured gift that I have ever received from anyone."
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"We met in mid-November, so we said pretty clearly that we weren't going to get any sort of Christmas gifts for each other. At the time I wasn't drinking wine since the sulfites in it caused migraines for me, so he ignored our no-gifts rule and got me a bottle of sulfite-free wine from Trader Joe's! It was only $7 but it was incredibly sweet."
"I became instantly obsessed with Sloane Crosley's book I Was Told There'd Be Cake when it came out a few years ago, and literally told everyone I knew about it. I also bought 6 extra copies as Christmas gifts for friends. So I nearly died of excitement when my boyfriend gave me a signed copy with a personalized note from Sloane. He somehow got in touch with her and went to her office to get a signed copy."
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"On a trip to Alaska, I became irrationally angry when we were unable to do a Sea Lion encounter at the Alaska Sea Life Center. The next year for my birthday, my husband surprised me with a trip to Baltimore and the National Aquarium to do a dolphin encounter! It was so cool - we got to pet the dolphins, feed them, and play with them. It's an experience I'll never forget."
"Received from my then boyfriend (now husband) a large canvas print of a B&W photo I took in St. Tropez. It hangs above our bed now and meant a lot to me because it was a. the first gift I had ever received from him, and b. it was a total surprise and I'm still confused as to how he knew where to look for that photo. It's special because photography is a feel-good hobby of mine, and it made me feel so validated and proud to have him find a photo he thought was worthy of putting up on the wall!"
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"I get sad and mopey in the winter due to it being, you know, the winter. At the time I was working 3 jobs, most of which were on weird schedules. My boyfriend got me one of those sun lamps for seasonal depression so that I could see the sun and stay happy. Now that we live together, we wake up early some mornings and sit in front of it and talk for 15 minutes - or he sits in front of it and I lie down next to it and continue to sleep.
"My boyfriend's high school friends (who he emails EVERY DAY) are scattered all over. For his 30th birthday I contacted all of them (many of whom I've never met before) and organized for them to fly out to NYC for a birthday celebration weekend. I also forwarded him the email chain, which included lots of hilarious memories/musings from his friends. One of his friends said that I changed his morning routine to 'wake up, drink coffee, read an email from Claire making sure everything is still organized'."
"A past significant other gave me an unexpected gift one day. He had come by my apartment during the work day and slid an envelope under my door. He was pretty smooth about this because I was work from home and didn't realize it until about an hour later. In that envelope was a handmade card (adorbs! because this dude did some serious arts & crafts!). On construction paper he had a simple note. 'This certificate is good for: 1: Dinner at any restaurant of your choosing. 2: Movie night. 3: A full body massage followed by an orgasm. [Since we only were in the making out stage of the relationship, this was so hot!] One or all of these can be redeemed at any time.' This was spontaneous, adorable, assertive, creative, and overall awesome. I was so excited to redeem one (or all!) of them."
A Christmas StoryBy Michelle L. Dozois for HowAboutWe