My favorite gift this year was one we gave DS (almost 12). He asked for a laptop to help him with his schoolwork. A new laptop was not in our gift budget, and I had to tell him that.
Then, a couple of weeks before Christmas, DH's employer announced they were having a surplus computer sale. They sell off their surplus a couple of times every year, and laptops were included in this particular sale. They announce the opening of the sale at a specific time, and the computers usually go very fast because the prices are so good. You have to be quick to get in on it. I was ready and waiting for them to announce the opening of the sale, and I managed to snag one of the laptops. It's an older model, but it's well maintained and will meet DS's needs.
The only glitch was that it was stripped before the sale, so I had to set up the OS and purchase and install word processing software. I am so not a techie! Five days before Christmas, there I was trying to install all this stuff. Somehow, I figured out how to work around a few problems and get it done. I was rather impressed with myself.
As soon as I had it set up, I wrapped the laptop in a big box and put it under the tree right away. DS saw the box and was so excited about it. All he talked about in the days leading up to Christmas was what could be in that box. He could hardly contain his excitement.
When he opened the box on Christmas morning, he was completely shocked to see the laptop. He said, "Really? For me?" He could hardly believe his eyes. I'm happy that we were able to make it happen for him. The excitement he felt about the mysterious box and the look on his face when he opened it are priceless. For him, it was magical. It made my Christmas, and it was definitely my favorite gift.