Tuesday, May 31, 2011
Can't buy me love
I was astonished to see Fathers' Day promotions appear the day after Mothers' Day- and also the number of cards to Dad from the cat. It's easy enough to write off these secular days as "Hallmark (TM) holidays" but I am increasingly convinced that it is important to celebrate love in a world with so much disorder, to recognize the sacrifices of those who give so much with at least some small token. But does Dad really need another "World's Best Dad" coffee mug, tie, or tool kit?
When we were first married, my husband and I instituted The $5 Challenge for occasions such as Valentine's Day, our wedding anniversary, and the like. $5 can be a relatively easy amount to find in a budget- for our family it would mean an extra meatless meal. It's quite surprising how much quality of life can be improved with that small amount.
Here are some ideas:
*Gift certificate to a deli for a sandwich- a break from brownbagging it
*A dessert from a patisserie
*Their favorite flavor of X (jam, cheese, etc) when they normally yield to majority opinion
*A box of really nice frozen novelties or cookies
*A trip to an ice cream parlor for two
*A pound of exotic fruit or bulk snack
*A flat of annuals or herbs
*Some gadget/tool for a favorite hobby
With a little bit of advance planning, the $5 can go even further with a coupon at many national department stores, mass-market retailers, or craft stores.