Author Topic: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others  (Read 5437 times)

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PastryGoddess

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Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« on: December 19, 2012, 06:20:48 PM »
I have a bit of a dilemma.  My cousins started a very nice tradition last year of Christmas breakfast at their house.  Because our family is so widespread, we have different families having dinners at their places.  So the breakfast is a nice way to have a meal with members of the family you might not otherwise see. Unfortunately, last year was a bit of a disaster because they didn't have the right cookware to make a meal for 30 people.  So a few of us had to rotate cooking constantly in order to have enough hot food for everyone.


As my Xmas gift to them this year, I have gone out and purchased a whole bunch of items that they can use not only for holidays, but also for their own parties that they like to throw throughout the year.


My dilemma is that their mother Aunt A, came over to our house this weekend and saw the large pile of items that I have been collecting to give to them.  There are pots, pans, a griddle, serving platters, utensils, etc.  She started to paw through everything and actually had the griddle in her hand before I came upstairs and saw her.  She asked if she could have it and I told her no this pile was part of a gift.  I actually had to take it out of her hand and place it back in the pile  ::) . At that point she called me selfish and said that no one needed that much stuff and why couldn't I just go out and get another one. I repeated that it was a gift, and my Aunt O jumped in to beandip before I beaned her with the griddle Aunt A and my grandpa left to hang out.


The problem is that she will see these items at her son's house on Xmas morning and know where they came from.  She has no issue with either outright stealing of things or she will harass them afterwards to the point where they will just give her what she wants to get her to shut up.


I guess my dilemma is: Do I say something to my cousins about their mother coveting their xmas gifts or do I just let them deal with her as they please ? It would just really annoy me to find out that half of the stuff I gave them ended up at her place after the holidays.








Drawberry

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #1 on: December 19, 2012, 06:31:11 PM »
She asked if she could have it and I told her no this pile was part of a gift.  I actually had to take it out of her hand and place it back in the pile  ::) . At that point she called me selfish and said that no one needed that much stuff and why couldn't I just go out and get another one. I repeated that it was a gift, and my Aunt O jumped in to beandip before I beaned her with the griddle Aunt A and my grandpa left to hang out.

If you didn't bean her with the griddle I might have to! The nerve of some people, honestly...

Perhaps when your cousins open their gift you could jokingly mention "Better keep those under lock-and-key, Aunt A saw those a mile away!". If this is behavior that she's consistently come around with I am sure your cousins will 'take the hint' and understand.

I still can't quite grasp when people accuse others of being selfish when denied getting their own way, the irony is enough to choke a horse.

Carotte

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #2 on: December 19, 2012, 08:05:44 PM »

Perhaps when your cousins open their gift you could jokingly mention "Better keep those under lock-and-key, Aunt A saw those a mile away!". If this is behavior that she's consistently come around with I am sure your cousins will 'take the hint' and understand.


I pod this! if it's the kind of humor your family is used to :)

Winterlight

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #3 on: December 20, 2012, 10:44:56 AM »

Perhaps when your cousins open their gift you could jokingly mention "Better keep those under lock-and-key, Aunt A saw those a mile away!". If this is behavior that she's consistently come around with I am sure your cousins will 'take the hint' and understand.


I pod this! if it's the kind of humor your family is used to :)

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PastryGoddess

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #4 on: December 20, 2012, 11:58:37 AM »
So I think I'm going to finish shopping for them tomorrow and drop them off this weekend with a word of warning. 
The real problem is not my cousins, but the various "girlfriends" who will be there to "help".  Aunt A will have no problem with telling them that she let them borrow this stuff and when everything is cleaned up will mosey on out of the house with the items she wants and her sons none the wiser.


I figure if I give them a heads up they'll stick around for the clean up rather than go watch TV in the basement.

Shoo

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #5 on: December 20, 2012, 01:01:39 PM »
If you really believe Aunt is going to steal their Christmas presents, I think you need to speak to your cousins AND your aunt, and make it clear to them (and Aunt especially) that these gifts are for cousins, and are not for Aunt to claim as her own.

I wouldn't worry one bit about offending Aunt in this situation.  If you don't take these steps, you can bet your cousins will be short some of the items you give them at the end of the day.  Put your aunt on notice, and make sure everyone knows it.

ClaireC79

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #6 on: December 20, 2012, 01:14:51 PM »
Is it possible that Aunt A was wanting the pan FOR her son and DIL to use for the same breakfast? - would be quite ironic if that was the case

PastryGoddess

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #7 on: December 20, 2012, 01:22:49 PM »
There are no DIL to speak of.  It's a bachelor household consisting of her two sons

TootsNYC

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #8 on: December 20, 2012, 01:27:03 PM »
I think you can't really keep her sons from caving in to their mom. Once you give that gift, it's the recipients' to do with as they please, and if they decide their life is easier because they give in to their mom, that's their choice.

You *can* deliver it early; she might not recognize the items if they get pulled out of a cabinet instead of out of a package.

You *can* tell them that their mother tried to take it from your house, and that she is clearly wanting something like it. Then they can be prepared if they are the sort to circumvent her.


You *can* label them w/ a P-touch labeler before you give them (metal that goes on the stovetop can't take a P-touch label, but pans that go in the oven under 450degrees can--and the handles of pots can be labeled).


Girly

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #9 on: December 20, 2012, 01:27:57 PM »
I think you can mention something to cousins (and again to Aunt), but at the end of the day, it's a gift to cousins. If they want to let Aunt take it with her when she leaves, it's up to them.

Sophia

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #10 on: December 20, 2012, 01:44:55 PM »
During the gift opening I would say (in jest), "Cousins, be careful with these and don't let your mother get her hands on them.  She already tried to steal the griddle when she saw it at my house before I wrapped it."

I think the word "steal" needs to be in there.

If said in a joking tone, people can pretend that you were joking.  But, everyone in the room will be on alert.  If your cousins don't have a griddle at a later party then people will assume it was a mother stealing from her sons. 

weeblewobble

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #11 on: December 20, 2012, 03:44:38 PM »
I think you can't really keep her sons from caving in to their mom. Once you give that gift, it's the recipients' to do with as they please, and if they decide their life is easier because they give in to their mom, that's their choice.

You *can* deliver it early; she might not recognize the items if they get pulled out of a cabinet instead of out of a package.

You *can* tell them that their mother tried to take it from your house, and that she is clearly wanting something like it. Then they can be prepared if they are the sort to circumvent her.


You *can* label them w/ a P-touch labeler before you give them (metal that goes on the stovetop can't take a P-touch label, but pans that go in the oven under 450degrees can--and the handles of pots can be labeled).

POD.  It so very sweet and thoughtful that you're doing this for your cousins.  But really you can't prevent them from giving the gifts to their mom.  It's their family strategy to keep mom quiet and they're not going to break that strategy, even if the thought of her grubby mitts on their griddle drives you nuts.  It would me, too.   You're "selfish" for not handing over a gift that you are going to give someone?  Really?  REALLY?  And if you can "just go out and get another one" so can Aunt A.

What a pill.


TootsNYC

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #12 on: December 20, 2012, 05:07:56 PM »
If I were the sons, I might let mom take it home, and then "borrow" it back when I was having a party. And THEN keep it.

(She really went rummaging through stuff at your house, thinking she could just take it? Yeah, there really isn't much you can do. But, I say: do get or borrow a P-touch labeler, and label all the items before you give them to the guys.)

Harriet Jones

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #13 on: December 20, 2012, 05:20:47 PM »
Sharpie might work, too.

snowdragon

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Re: Keeping a gift from being "borrowed" by others
« Reply #14 on: December 20, 2012, 05:23:51 PM »
give Auntie a griddle just like the one your giving the cousins?   And when she opens it - "Well, you tried take the one I got for the boys so  I thought you'd want one for yourself." the entire family will know what's up and hopefully help the boys keep their own stuff.