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By Chandrama Anderson

Gifts and Belongings

Uploaded: Jun 25, 2022

Of my 5 Love Languages, and my husband’s too, gifts are the last of five. We mostly choose to do something together for birthdays and holidays (quality time, in love language). Because I’m super picky about my belongings, I’m not easy to pick a gift for. My husband once gave me a beautiful pair of black leather boots. I loved them, except the heels were too high, and I felt terrible telling him they were amazing and sexy, but I was going to return them. He was disappointed, but he understood.

Occasionally, we do give each other gifts. It's important to me to give a gift that I know the receiver will love. I found a collectible for my husband: a piece of original Golden Gate Bridge suspension cable used between 1936-1976 (we met in 1976). It’s a weighty piece!

A few companies offered me gifts to check out, and I decided to try four of them, thinking that you, Readers, might be looking for a gift that’s not run of the mill.

The first is ThatBlanket. You email a favorite photo, and you receive an incredibly soft, lightweight blanket with the photo on it. I picked an older photo of the two of us in the Colorado mountains with a waterfall in the background. We love seeing it on our bed, and remembering that trip.

Petsies makes two items: animal shaped pillows with an airbrushed image of your pet, and stuffies that are smaller than, but identical to, your pet. I had one made of our Papillon, Bixby. Fun, huh? I love it. And being the person that I am, and thinking the way I do, I will have it to hug and cry over when Bixby eventually dies.

Buddha Board: Paint on the surface with water and watch your creation come to life. As the water slowly evaporates your art will magically disappear . . . leaving you with a clean slate and a clear mind. I am not an artist, yet I loved making images without (too much) self-judgment. One of my sons is an artist and he prefers to create things that last. Just a different mindset. They come in different sizes and styles. Given how stressed out everyone seems to be, I highly recommend it.

Fuego Hot Sauce plants five trees for every crate sold. We liked all of the sauces, and for me who doesn’t eat spicy anything, they were good. None of them were especially hot (the honey was the hottest), and they were all good. You can spice up your life and help the environment at the same time. They come in a wood crate you can use again.

Meanwhile, we’re sorting all of our belongings in preparation to move, and our goal is to divest half of everything. It’s a grueling process, and it feels good to let things go. When we lived on a houseboat, the rule was: a box in, a box out, or a bag in, a bag out. We did not maintain this rule once we moved into a house :-( But we are planning to re-up the rule in our new home.

What do gifts represent to you? Do you like to give gifts? Do you like to receive gifts? Have you had this conversation with your partner? Do you make it easy or hard for others to give you gifts? Gifts are loaded with meaning and emotion, whether we want them to be or not. Every person attaches meaning in unique ways. Figure out what yours are and talk about it.