Christmas Worst, 2006

It’s no surprise that when receiving a gluttony of gifts, you’re bound to get a few that make you say, “Huh?” You know what I mean – gifts that make you wonder what that person was thinking when they tossed it into the gift bag.

I have to admit that most of our relatives are competent gift givers. They actually take the time to think about what a person might like as a present. But every family has to have that one crazy family member, right?

Once again, my Great Aunt Dorothy has taken the prize for worst gifts. An item is only a good gift to her if it is on sale, preferably 75% or more off, and she has a coupon as well. If a store is closing, you can bet we’ll be seeing products from that store at the next holiday gathering.

Aunt Dot never gives individually wrapped gifts. Instead, we all receive large gift bags (now that Lazarus has been bought out by Macy’s, we no longer have gift bags made of Lazarus shopping bags), and in those bags is a random assortment of junk collected over the past year.

While little can top last year’s winner of the map of “Historic Millersburg, OH”, there were some puzzling gifts this year.

First up, in the category of, “Do you even comprehend what I’m saying?” is this little gem:

A nutcracker. I’ve told her over and over and over again that I do not like nutcrackers. First, I see no purpose in having a nutcracker that doesn’t actually crack nuts. Second, I think they’re a little creepy looking. And yet, having repeated my dislike of nutcrackers, I still get them every year. Besides this one (with Aunt Dot’s trademark price tag left on the item – good to know she spent less than $2.49), she also gave us a nutcracker ornament for the tree, too.

Next, is this cute little bear for Cordy, in the category of “Are you sure this thing isn’t infected?”:

Noooo, don’t touch it! It’s concentrated eeeevil!

Oh sure, you may be wondering, “What’s wrong with a stuffed bear?” and from the picture you can’t tell the problem. Hell, it’s even still white. But one day, when our technology allows us to share scents across the internet, you will understand. Except that by that time, the bear will probably be nothing more than ashes, because it is going out in the next trash pick-up.

The smell on this bear is a mix of cigarettes, rotten food, and bad breath. How it has remained white is beyond me, because it smells like it’s been dragged through a sewage plant, or at least through a house full of children with stomach flu. Where did she find this treasure? The thrift store, of course. While I’m known to frequent thrift stores for good deals, there’s no way I’d buy a stinky stuffed animal there. If it can’t be washed, I don’t want it given to my daughter.

Other interesting trinkets in the gift bag included a random selection of mis-matched, paper-thin washcloths, some outdated soup, and off-brand cashews that are chewy (just like last year…and every year). But the weirdest, most off-the-wall, Christmas gift of 2006 has to be this:

Store-brand, instant non-fat dry milk (nearly outdated). Need I say more, other than “WTF?”

It is the thought that counts when it comes to giving gifts. I just wish I could understand the thought process behind the gifts Aunt Dot gives.

Edit: After Kristen’s urging, I’m now entering this into the Worst Present Ever contest over at A Mama’s Rant. If you got a bad gift, be sure to go enter the contest as well!

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  1. You need to enter Ann Marie’s contest (…!) she’s doing the worst xmas gift ever contest!

  2. I don’t understand why you aren’t overjoyed and dancing with glee over that instant milk, I really don’t.

    I think you’d win that contest, hands down.

  3. That is too funny! Who gives powdered milk for Christmas? At the very least she gives you the gift of something amusing to blog about.

  4. Wow. I will never again complain about receiving fleece blankets every year or the fake fur zippered vest… You win.

    And the pictures are beautiful! Cordy is a doll. And Corinne got the same Backyardigans boat! She loves it.

  5. I’ve been looking forward to this post and you (and your looney aunt) did not disappoint! WTF?! A bear from a thrift store? Eeew.

    If you don’t win that contest it will be a complete outrage.

  6. You got dried milk for Christmas? Was it wrapped up and everything?

  7. I’ve been thinking, what would Christina really want for Christmas and then it came to me… A BOX OF MILK! Of course.

  8. Too funny, I would love to have a picture of your face when you opened this.

    How did you show your excitement for generic non-fat dry milk??

    Did anyone else get some?

  9. Wow…..all I can say is…. wow.

  10. Sarah, no it wasn’t individually wrapped, but part of a large gift bag of stuff.

    Laura – Over the years, I’ve become very skilled at looking genuinely happy for anything she gives us. When I was a kid, I would often roll my eyes or say exactly what I thought of getting a notepad of paper with my name on it, only spelled with a K instead of a Ch.

    After a lot of coaching by my mom and aunts, I can now look her in the eye and say “thank you” with a smile, and then later wonder aloud with other family members what in the world she was thinking. And no, we’re the only ones who got dry milk, but other people got strange items, too.

  11. I am laughing myself silly….

    That is sooooo bizarre!

    Our extended family don’t give gifts anymore..but I once got a dog made out of golf balls.

    We also have more hankerchiefs than anyone really needs.

    I once got a camel toy from Tunisia…mom wouldn’t let me play with it as it rustled strangely and probably had heroin in it.

    This year was a banner year actually because my mil did NOT give me the choc covered cherries from Zellers that I throw away.

  12. LOL!! Too funny – must be something about the name, Dot. My MIL is named Dot and gave us 1. The commemorative coin from the 9/11 site (which I think is totaly creepy and complete waste of money), 2. An old “Ideals” magazine, 3. A red and grey fleece jacket for my husband who is NOT a buckeye fan and looks 300 pounds in it, 4. An old camera instruction book (I kid you not), and a used “Hulk” ornament. We need to share “Dot” stories someday :)

  13. Nothing like Dry Milk in your stocking. Nothing at all.

    Maybe it’s a cultural thing?

    No. Ok.

    Is she not so wealthy?

  14. islandarts says:

    You aren’t going to believe this, but we have an aunty Dot in the family as well… and these gifts would be something she’d give us- if she lived close enough. I’m laughing, but I’m also shaking my head knowingly… WOW.

  15. islandarts says:

    oh ya, and I forgot to mention Our Aunty Dorothy is LITERALLY named Dorothy… I wasn’t using that figuratively!!!!

  16. I’m curious, what does Aunt Dot give the other members of your family?

    She totally reminds me of one of my family members, but I can’t write about her because I’d be in serious trouble!! :)

    Sorry about the milk…that is odd!

  17. I cannot imagine ANYONE beating you in the worst present ever contest. Your aunt sounds like a hoot!

  18. Am I weird for liking nutcrackers? They’re so cute on the mantle, no? I think the worst gift I’ve heard of so far was on some blog (can’t remember which) where her inlaws regifted a ripped, deflated soccer ball to her daughter which used to be their dogs; and wrapped up a bar of soap taken from the Hilton. They knew because it said “Hilton” on it. Oy.

  19. Am I weird for liking nutcrackers? They’re so cute on the mantle, no? I think the worst gift I’ve heard of so far was on some blog (can’t remember which) where her inlaws regifted a ripped, deflated soccer ball to her daughter which used to be their dogs; and wrapped up a bar of soap taken from the Hilton. They knew because it said “Hilton” on it. Oy.

  20. Mommy the Maid says:

    Ah man, that is weird.

    Luckily, we didn’t get anything too off the wall. My MIL likes to give boxes of Brownies, and although my homemade are better, we still like the brownies.

  21. I am impressed at your ability to look pleased to receive dry milk. I’m not sure I could do it!

  22. I give my husband a nutcracker every year for Christmas…I had to go make sure that he likes them. Yes, he does. Thank goodness.

  23. smashedpea says:

    Heh, I got a bottle of maple syrup from my mother in law – for “the next time you make pancakes!”

    Worst one I ever heard about was some guy giving his then-girlfriend a dead fish. It came in a box that looked like it’d have long-stemmed roses in it :)

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