Author Topic: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long  (Read 2410 times)

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Iris

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Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« on: December 22, 2011, 04:22:52 PM »
[bg] DH has had back problems for years and has had a flare up in the last few months. This meant that I was essentially a single mum working full time in terms of practical chores. End result is that the yard has been completely neglected and in the back is now almost knee height. The front is not too bad, just a little ragged due to being a different type of grass. DH organised a neighbour's son to come and mow it but he never showed up, so nothing got done [/bg]

Now, I know that it is really getting DH down that the yard is like this but with the extra expenses for his physio plus DD1's medical bills we really couldn't do anything about it up until now. But the christmas shopping for everyone else is done, physio is finished, and I think I can squeeze another couple of hundred out of the budget for a present for DH. I was thinking of getting him a gift certificate to one of those lawn care places, then he can take ownership of the process and (admittely indirectly) be the one to get the yard back under control.

The trouble is that everyone I've mentioned this to has responded with varieties of "Ha! Good one! That'll show him!"

I'm not TRYING to show him. I am not even remotely annoyed with him that the lawn is in this state - he was injured for goodness' sake . I flat out didn't have time, DD1 has bad hayfever reactions to cut grass and DD2 is too young to mow. It is in such a state that although I now have time I don't have the physical strength to mow knee long grass (on a hill to boot). DH's back is much better but won't be up to tackling such a big job for a while. I am also worried that he will try and do it sooner than he should and hurt himself again.

So, oh wise e-hellions, could you tell me - do you think this seems like a PA dig? I don't want DH to feel like I'm undermining him on Christmas (I'll save that for the other days - b'doom tish). I'd love to get male perspectives on this too so any male ehellions or male friends handy please help? Is this one of those times when my female brain can't see the male perspective or am I just being oversenstive?
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blue2000

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #1 on: December 22, 2011, 04:33:01 PM »
If you really think he will like it, it sounds OK to me. It doesn't seem PA at all.

If you turn the situation around, would you be OK with getting a maid service for Christmas? I know I would, unless the spouse who gave it to me was being obviously nasty about the mess. That doesn't sound like what you are doing.
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TootsNYC

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #2 on: December 22, 2011, 04:52:59 PM »
In this situation, I wouldn't make it a gift. I'd just say, "Honey, I have some extra money, I think, so let's use it to get someone to help us get the lawn back in shape. I'm worried that your frustration with it will lead you to trying to do too much too soon. We can call it a Christmas present."

Because it *could* be seen as a dig, as you've discovered, and in my scenario, I completely control the "spin" it gets.

Kaypeep

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #3 on: December 22, 2011, 05:07:12 PM »
I don't think it's PA, but I also kind of think it's not a gift for him because it benefits the entire household.  It reminds me of when I bought my mom a toaster, and she said "That's not a personal gift.  It's for the whole household." I'm not normally a stickler about giving "the perfect present" but it just doesn't sit right with me.  I think it's a nice thing to do, and since DH can't work on the yard then by all means get a service to do it, if you have the money. But I still think you should give him a gift that is just for him, alone. 

TootsNYC

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #4 on: December 22, 2011, 05:10:45 PM »
Well, the "personal" vs. "household" thing is very individual. If my husband had given me a birthday gift of hiring a cleaning service to clean my home this summer, I'd have considered it a very thoughtful gift to me. To me, personally.
    Because I am the one stressing out over the condition of the home. It's not that the task doesn't benefit other people, but it's that the gift will have a very big impact on me.

I can see a situation in which the husband is very invested in the yard, and very bothered by its current state. So that's not the core of my objection tot he gifting.

To me, it's about controlling the "spin."


heartmug

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #5 on: December 22, 2011, 05:13:44 PM »
If you really think he will like it, it sounds OK to me. It doesn't seem PA at all.

If you turn the situation around, would you be OK with getting a maid service for Christmas? I know I would, unless the spouse who gave it to me was being obviously nasty about the mess. That doesn't sound like what you are doing.

POD.  You know him best.  If it were my husband he would so enjoy not having to mow the lawn!
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Iris

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #6 on: December 22, 2011, 05:34:30 PM »
If you really think he will like it, it sounds OK to me. It doesn't seem PA at all.

If you turn the situation around, would you be OK with getting a maid service for Christmas? I know I would, unless the spouse who gave it to me was being obviously nasty about the mess. That doesn't sound like what you are doing.

POD.  You know him best.  If it were my husband he would so enjoy not having to mow the lawn!

I would LOVE a maid service for Christmas  ;D Not that DH and DDs don't help (well, not DH recently...) but I am the one that is bothered by the house if you kwim. I am the one who is going to get off ehell (soon!) and go out coordinate family efforts because frankly the rest of them would sit in filth if I let them (it feels like it sometimes, anyway).

So I don't think the 'non-personal' nature will bother him at all because he really has been worried about the lawn and this will help with that. It was just that sometimes things bother guys and I just don't get why (sorry to make a generalisation, just my experience, and it doesn't happen often). I wanted to make sure it wasn't a universal 'guy thing'. Also I was gifting it to him because at least then he can control what happens and when - I know that sounds weird but I think he is feeling a bit of a burden at the moment so I think something he *can* do will be good for him, maybe.

I think I'll go with a modified version of Toots suggestion. He always says "Don't worry about getting me a present" but I like to. So I might get him a small, personal present and say something in advance about there also being a sort of 'family' present that's got his name on it - we do do those sometimes.
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Poirot thought you could, but forebore to say so.

Ms_Cellany

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #7 on: December 22, 2011, 06:08:37 PM »
Taking care of a big burden can be festive if handled right.

In our own case - We just bought ourselves a plumber's visit as our Christmas gift to each other, to take care of all the annoyances that have been irksome for a while (hot water doesn't work in the washer, toilets were flushing poorly). 

I think if presented in a happy way, lawn care would be a GREAT gift! Can you find some sort of depiction of a lawn mower & put a Santa hat on it?
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JeanFromBNA

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #8 on: December 22, 2011, 07:30:14 PM »
I'm a left-brained female, and one of my favorite presents was a 20-yard dumpster rental.  Getting a lawn service gift certificate would thrill me to pieces.  My DH would feel the same, I know. 

mikeylou

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #9 on: December 22, 2011, 10:56:15 PM »
Getting a (maid) service would depend on who is giving it to me.

DH, that's so sweet.
MIL, ... PA Criticism of my housekeeping skills.

Ms Aspasia

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #10 on: December 22, 2011, 11:39:09 PM »
It'd be taking a chance, but it could work well.

Disclaimer: I gave my husband a robot vacuum cleaner for his birthday.  He liked it a lot, but I'm seem to be the main one using it.  :)

Laurel

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #11 on: December 23, 2011, 12:00:13 AM »
Getting a (maid) service would depend on who is giving it to me.

DH, that's so sweet.
MIL, ... PA Criticism of my housekeeping skills.

POD


My DH asked for a Simple Human soap dispenser for his birthday.  MIL bought it for him, and it's the first time I haven't taken offense to a housekeeping gift she's given us.

Bijou

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #12 on: December 23, 2011, 02:10:59 AM »
In this situation, I wouldn't make it a gift. I'd just say, "Honey, I have some extra money, I think, so let's use it to get someone to help us get the lawn back in shape. I'm worried that your frustration with it will lead you to trying to do too much too soon. We can call it a Christmas present."

Because it *could* be seen as a dig, as you've discovered, and in my scenario, I completely control the "spin" it gets.
Well stated, and a good idea, I think. 
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EduardosGirl

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #13 on: December 23, 2011, 05:01:19 AM »
DF gave me my Christmas present this afternoon: a freshly cut key for the back door. I've been asking him to get one cut for nearly a year now. I'm thrilled!

(We spent all our money on an overseas trip very recently so no real gift exchange will happen this Christmas.)

Iris, you know your husband best. Other people's interpretations do not reflect the reality of the gift. Go with a clear conscience, I say.

whiterose

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Re: Is this a PA gift? Help, please! A bit long
« Reply #14 on: December 23, 2011, 11:33:09 AM »
I am 50-50 whole brained. My favorite presents to receive are cash and gift cards (to places I do business at regularly). I think this would be an awesome present. Not passive-aggressive at all.
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