If Andrea and I ever became famous (or infamous) to the point that a column full of Jeopardy questions was dedicated to us on the popular quiz show, the following exchange would probably take place:
Contestant #1: "I'll take 'The Normal Mormon Couple' for $100, Alex."
Alex: "The answer is: A mechanical key chain featuring a mother pig nursing her baby piglets."
Contestant #3: "What is the first gift Andrew ever gave to Andrea?"
Alex: "Correct! Your turn to select."
Contestant #3: "I will stay with 'NMC' for $200, please."
Alex: "The answer - $3.89."
Contestant #2: "What is Andrew's hourly rate while working on-campus at BYU?"
Alex: "Ohh, sorry. That's incorrect. Andrew only made $2.95/hr. in that job."
Contestant #1:"What is the amount of money that Andrew spent on the first gift he bought for Andrea."
Alex: "That's correct! What a cheapskate. You're turn to choose."
Contestant #1:"Normal Mormon Couple for $500, Alex."
Alex: "The answer - Incredible."
Contestant #2: "What are Andrew's abs?"
Alex: "Sorry, but way wrong. Any other answers?"
Contestant #3: "What is the fact that Andrea didn't dump Andrew after his first gift to her was a mechanical mother pig key chain that he bought for less than five bucks from a 7-11?"
Alex: "Correct! Andrea should have ran while she had the chance!"
Yes, you read that correctly. The first gift I ever bought Andrea was a key chain featuring a mechanical mother pig that fed it's piglets when the case was opened up. Now, there was an inside joke associated with the gift, but still, what a lame first gift-giving effort! I have improved very little over the past ten years and always have a hard time finding good presents for the NMW that both delight and surprise her.
Not only is it hard for me to find good gifts for Andrea, but all of our major gift-giving holidays and anniversaries happen to converge over a short period of time. In a few weeks I will enter the hardest part of the year for me. I will soon be weathering the perfect storm of important husband-type gift-giving dates that begins with Mother's Day (May 11th this year) and ends approximately four weeks later on June 14th. During this short period of time Andrea commemorate four important dates:
1) Mother's Day
2) Andrea's birthday
3) Anniversary of my release from Utah State Prison at Point of the Mountain
4) Our wedding anniversary
Okay, I made number three up, but the others are legit. While Mother's Day, our anniversary and the NMW's birthday are three of the most enjoyable dates on the calendar, it is draining from a gift-giving standpoint. Within the span of about four weeks, I have to come up with the three most important presents of the year. It's like having a ward member speak in Sacrament meeting, substitute in Gospel Doctrine, and give the Elder's Quorum lesson on the same Sunday. It is just too much to pull off back-to-back-to-back. It is great to have those opportunities, but they are best when spread out evenly throughout the year. Well, I don't have that luxury when it comes to showering Andrea with her annual gifts.
The purpose of this post is to help all of the Normal Mormon Husbands out there provide a nice gift to their wives this year. May 11th will be here before we know it. Before asking each of you (females included) to share good gift ideas, I have a few unique, thoughtful possibilities that are definitely worth sharing.
-Jewelry: Instead of going to ZCMI and getting knock-off sterling silver jewelry at 50% off, take a look at CharmedDesigns.blogspot.com. The NMW has ordered a few necklaces and bracelets from this site and they look great. The person who designs the pieces also gives them funky, fresh names like, "Cowgirl Rockstar", "Spring Fiesta", and "Penguin Parade". It is a great alternative to the bland, traditional jewelry that gets purchased for Mother's Day.
-Scrapbooking: BYU scientists have overwhelmingly concluded that scrapbooking is hard-coded into every LDS mothers genetic makeup. A good site for pre-made scrapbook pages, "Day You Were Born/Married" keepsake pages, wedding invitations, etc. is scrapits.com. I ordered a "Day You Were Married" keepsake page for Andrea and we got a few good chuckles reading about the cost of living ($1.19 for a gallon of gas), sports (Bulls beat Jazz in NBA Finals as every Jazz fan yells, "MJ shoved Russell!" Let it go, guys, let it go), and music of 1997 (Mmm..Bop and the Spice Girls topped the charts). I also got "Name Meaning Gifts" for the kids. Whitney's was on a Disney Princess background and was eerily accurate when it said, "The number Four is closely associated with nature, so it is important for you to spend a lot of time outdoors." We were planning an outdoor party for Whitney's fourth birthday when we got it.
-Swoozie's: A lot of LDS women window shop at Swoozie's, but rarely spend money there. They have great products, but are a bit on the pricey side for most young families with four kids. Letting your wife spoil herself a little bit with a Swoozie's gift card can go a long way.
Hopefully these Mother's Day gift ideas help, but please feel free to post every other good gift you have every given (guys) or received (ladies) to make this Mother's Day a good one. When it's all said and done, I hope to avoid ever hearing the following on Jeopardy:
Contestant #2: "Alex, let's stay with The Normal Mormon Couple for $300."
Alex: "The answer - Cash."
Contestant #1:" What is Andrea's annual Mother's Day gift?"
Alex: "That's right...Andrew, you should be ashamed of yourself."