Funny Holiday Gift Fails and Our Gift-Giving Solution

Look out the window. See all those colourful lights?

Is that “Little Drummer Boy” playing over the loudspeaker at the grocery store again?

I smell gingerbread cookies…

The ghastly truth is dawning on me. We do not, in fact, have plenty of time before Christmas. We have A WEEK.

I know some of you are smiling right now, secure in the knowledge you’ve had your tree up for weeks, the holiday baking is done, and all your gifts are purchased and wrapped. All that’s left is to put up your feet, relax, and enjoy a stress-free holiday.

That was totally my plan too, until we decided to renovate our kitchen. But the new kitchen made the rest of the house look run-down so we had no choice but to paint the walls too. And then Chris got the flu, and my kids’ school moved up the date of their winter concert, and we were short-handed at work so I took some extra shifts… I blinked — and then it was December 17th.

You may have realized something by now: I’M NOT READY.

Thankfully, my kids are easy to shop for. If it’s Star Wars or it has sequins, go for it. If it’s Star Wars and sequins, I’ve hit the jackpot!

Now if it were only half as easy to think of the right gift for everyone else. My dad only has the one neck; there are only so many ties I can get him. There’s a limit to how many years in a row I can give my brother a pair of hockey gloves.

I know I can’t be the only one. At one point or another, we’ve all felt stuck trying to come up with the perfect gift until the last minute panic sets in and you end up giving your spouse a Peloton bike, right? Maybe you’ve also accidentally given a box of fancy cheeses to your lactose-intolerant friend, or a set of naughty wine glasses to your less than amused mother-in-law. (I really thought she’d find them funny – I was wrong.)

Here’s another true story. For Kay’s 4th birthday, her grandfather gave her a set of whiteboard markers and whiteboard cleaner. We still don’t know why, but it’s a cute and funny story we re-tell every year.

That’s why a gift card is a life saver when I want to send a gift to my friend in Toronto or to my brother who is the worst to buy for because he insists on going shopping for himself right before Christmas. (It’s two weeks before Christmas. Stop that!) The best part is you can pick up a card online, anywhere anytime, making this the perfect last minute gift (even in-the-car-on-the-way-to-my-work-Christmas-party last minute).

I hate when gift cards get shoved into the back of a drawer somewhere and end up wasted. Since gift cards never expire (whew!) and they’re good at hundreds of retailers at any of 22 Ivanhoé Cambridge shopping centres across Canada, you never need to worry about this gift not getting used. My mother-in-law can get the perfect winter coat she’s had her eye on, my nephew can have the scooter he’s been begging for all year, and I’ll have the satisfaction of knowing the people I love will receive something they’ll truly love and appreciate.

Here in British Columbia, participating malls include Tsawwassen Mills in Tsawwassen, Guildford Town Centre in Surrey, Metropolis at Metrotown in Burnaby, Woodgrove Centre in Nanaimo, and Mayfair Shopping Centre in Victoria.

At Tsawwassen Mills alone, there are 140 stores to choose from, so no matter who you’re shopping for, they’ll find the perfect present. For kids, there’s Mastermind Toys, Build-a-Bear Workshop, and Carter’s OshKosh. The teen on your list has plenty of options like H&M, Hot Topic, or MAC. Dad can use his gift card at Bass Pro Shops, SportCheck, or Under Armour. And for her, there’s the Body Shop, Coach, La Senza, DSW, and Saje!

And it’s not just “stuff”. gift cards can also be used for treats and eats while they’re out shopping, from a Starbucks peppermint mocha to a nice lunch out at Milestones. So if you’re on the hunt for the solution to your gift-giving stress this year, a gift card is it!

Last minute shopping is saved with a gift card available online!

Disclosure: This is a sponsored conversation. Nevertheless, I only share information I believe will be of interest and benefit to my readers. All opinions expressed are completely honest and my own, based on my personal experience. Your experience may differ.

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  • I sympathise with you Olivia. I leave home on the 24th to go to my daughter’s and didn’t find anything my grandkids would like, so it will be money this year, however as she said they love money too! I’ve also lately had so much work with my taxes that it’s unbelievable including getting certified copies made which cost me a bomb. Since I’ll be going to Europe soon there was the medical travel insurance to sort out and pay for, a visit to my Dr for a prescription needed for my trip it was literally never ending though apart from packing I think that I’ve managed everything I needed to do, whew!

  • That’s a good idea, I wonder if they can be used outside of BC. I know I do give a few gift cards out at Christmas.

    • They can! These cards can be used at any Ivanhoé Cambridge mall across Canada – they have locations in BC, Alberta, Manitoba, Ontario, Quebec, and Nova Scotia.