You Want Me to Buy What, Part 2

I’m back with more ridiculous items from the same catalog I shared with you last week, if you missed the first installment you can read it here.

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Every where we turn there is some one trying to sell us something we just NEED to  have.  We are entering the busiest consumer spending time of the year.  No longer are we bombarded with sales and ads for Christmas shopping from Thanksgiving to Christmas Day, but now the stores are stocking Christmas items from September 1st on.    Here are some items not to buy this year.

 

There is decorating for the holidays, or seasons, and then there is decorating.  I like to add a red throw, put out some candles and have a clean home with smells of delicious foods cooking.  What I wouldn’t like is a set of toilet covers that make sounds.  This choice of a turkey (which says gobble, gobble, gobble) or Santa (who chuckles Ho Ho Ho).  Can you say tacky?

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Last week I shared with you an obsession over shoes which was specifically directed at women, but this motorcycle wine holder seems to be the male version to grab your money.

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For the hunters, there was a set of 3 camouflage rolls of toilet paper.  Just because you have a hobby or sport you enjoy doesn’t mean you need to have it printed on your toilet paper, something you flush away.  Isn’t golf supposed to be a mature sport?  Well, not according to the gifts I found for golfers
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Children find bodily functions hilarious. If they didn’t the whoopee cushion wouldn’t still be sold generation after generation. But does a golfer need to hear farting noises when practicing their putting?  What does farting and putting have to do with each other?

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Don’t forget to purchase an alarm clock this year for at least one person on your gift list.  You can choose from a piece of bacon that sizzles or a farting boy to (and I’m quoting the ad here) “Fart your day off right”  Seriously???

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I love animals, all animals.  When I had pets I bought something for them for Christmas. Today I make sure to give the wild life around me a treat by leaving carrot tops for the bunnies, or making a bird feeder with peanut butter and seed.  What I won’t do when giving a treat to an animal is test their I.Q. with these.  Look at the sad face on the puppy, he’s not enjoying this one bit.

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Not to leave out the cat lovers, here is a battery-powered toy that simulates a mouse moving under the fabric to drive your cat crazy.

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And for the bird lovers, don’t waste your money buying a real parrot you will have to train and feed.  Now you can buy a talking battery operated parrot that will even perch on your finger.  Isn’t this the creepiest thing you’ve ever seen?

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Jewelry is a fall back gift when you have no idea what to buy for a woman in your life.  First does she need more jewelry?  The next question is why would you give LED light up earrings as a gift. If I want a lights I’ll turn on a flashlight.

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You’ve decided against buying the earrings?  You think a locket would be better.  Please don’t buy me this locket.   Inside this locket is a very tiny vial which is designed to carry the ashes of your loved ones.  First please tell me how you fill this vial without making a mess.  Second, yuck!  I love every person I have ever lost, but I have found other ways to keep them alive in my heart and memories.

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I may sound like a Grinch but I adore Dr. Seuss’ Grinch, just don’t ask me to wear clothes with attached Grinch booties.

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When it comes to toys for children I am very picky. This particular toy really bothers me.  These toy guns come in blue or pink when we start giving children guns I don’t think we need to identify them by a gender color.  The next problem I have with these is the “bullets” are marshmallows.  It is advertised as an outdoor toy.  There are parts of the world where not even clean drinking water is available, yet we are so lucky we can buy sugary food to shoot and leave to decompose.  Where I live, nothing like this would decompose, it would be eaten by the wildlife that share the land with us, do we really want to feed them sugary marshmallows?

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And if that isn’t bad enough let’s teach our children how to tattoo their bodies. No, I have nothing against tattoos, I have one, my one son and his wife have them.  I bought temporary tattoos for my children and now grand children.  But this goes too far.   This kit comes with a battery operated tattoo gun that simulates the up and down movement of a real tattoo.  Will my grandchildren ever get a real, permanent tattoo when they are older, maybe and maybe not, but do they really need to practice giving themselves tattoos?  What do you think?

 

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I may have a small home, but even I can find a way to put household items away. Please do me a favor, don’t use your vacuum as a decoration.  Not only is this in poor taste, a vacuum holds the dust and dirt from your home, it is not a sealed appliance, everything in there can affect the air quality of your home.  Do you really think these are attractive?

 

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If you live where you have winter, I do, you will know what it looks like to have snow falling.  If you miss having snow for the holidays, trust me this $60 light box won’t give you the feeling of a white Christmas, save your money and accept the weather you are blessed with.

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How are you doing on the challenge to come in under budget this Christmas?

I have already gotten a good majority of my shopping done.  I budgeted $35 for each adult (my two boys and their wives) and $40 per child.  So far I have the gift for my son, what he wanted I found for $10, for his wife, I spent $20.  For the children I am way under budget and pleased with how things are coming along.

 

For the little girls who love their Barbie dolls, I am making them each a wardrobe of clothes. I am crocheting each item which will include pants, skirts, dresses, coats, hats. and more.  But with a doll so small it doesn’t take much yarn to complete an article of clothing.  Instead of buying several colors of yarn I made a phone call to a good friend who does a lot more crocheting than I do.  I asked her if she had any leftover yarn from some of her past projects and explained what I was doing  Here’s what she sent down.

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While the little one saw the yarn that was sent down to me, she doesn’t know what I am doing with it.   I won’t have to buy any yarn to complete Barbie’s clothes.  Which saves me quite a bit right there on the budget.

How do you stay on budget for the holidays?

 

How will you meet the challenge to spend less than you budgeted for?

 

What was the worst gift you have ever received?

45 thoughts on “You Want Me to Buy What, Part 2

  1. I shook my head to many of these items again…. and yes all the shelves here are stacked already with Christmas produce, cards, tinsel and lights…. I often wish you lived down our street Lois, on the garage clearing saga, Hubby and I gifted the local Heart Foundation loads of wool which I was given many years ago on spools, I was given a knitting machine and never did get around to using it ( The Wool was in mint condition too as we had stored it well, that well we had forgotten we had it LOL ) Well not surprising, as I have not been able to see the back of the garage in years :-) ;-) … The charity shop couldn’t take the knitting machine as it was electrical, so the scrap man had to end up with it, ( De cluttering can be painful as well as liberating ;-) ) but they took 2 sacks full of various brown and beige shades of wool on Large cones…
    I can see one lucky little girl very happy with her Barbie’s new wardrobe :-)

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    • Wow, Sue you really are clearing out! I too wish I lived nearby. I never learned to knit but have been told those knitting machines are great and would loved to have tried it out.

      And yes, she doesn’t know she’s getting an entire wardrobe for her Barbies, that will be her Christmas present as she doesn’t know she’s about to receive the dresser she can’t stop talking about. :-)

      Christmas is so overdone, and so devoid of the real meaning and spirit of the holiday, I am hoping that the handmade gifts will be a way to keep the little ones grounded in what Christmas is really about.

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      • Yes, only the other day Christmas cropped up in conversation as my daughter in law said they were getting one of those IPod’s which can be useful teaching tools, Without saying too much via public here… you can imagine my thoughts…. A Winter coat was on our list but I was told someone else was getting one, so new shoes and boots… She has far too many toys never played with which are stashed away ..
        I saw a brilliant idea the other day which you could share with your little one.. when on a nature walk..
        and that is create a Journey stick…
        You need a stick, from a branch twig about a couple of ft long, that could be used as walking stick,.. A long length of wool….
        As you go along your nature walk and find leaves feathers cones etc, you tie them to your journey stick with winding the wool yarn to secure them…
        on returning home they then recount their journey through the items on their stick… and any info you told them about their finds.. I can not wait to do this…
        As the other day I taught her two new trees, the Holly tree and Hawthorne,,, we walked along a lane which had them self planted alternatively… Once she recognised the leaves she would point out which was which along our walk… Loved it.. :-)

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        • Sue, I too will reserve my thoughts about an iPod for little ones. I also avoid using books that come with machines that read the story to the child. Are we so busy we can’t stop to read a book to a little one?

          I love the walking stick, my little ones would love that as well. They are constantly picking things up and putting them in my bag to bring home. I have a bowl of rocks and plenty of pinecones here from them. :-)

          Children have so many toys it’s shocking. I recall my grandfather telling me my boys had too many toys, compared to what he grew up with I guess as my boys only had a small toy box and a few more fragile toys on a book shelf. They did have plenty of books, but then again so did I. But I can see my grandfather’s point of view now that I see what my grandchildren have in the way of toys.

          My grandson isn’t too interested in the names of the trees, but my granddaughter, like yours, enjoys identifying the trees she knows by the shape of the leaves. The other thing she found fun this summer is to learn some of the edible flowers and try each of them. :-)

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          • Brilliant, I see she is a little nature child,,,, an interesting programme on TV i did watch was about how a school did a project on making things out of cardboard boxes, ( as you know My own two enjoyed their cheap Christmas gift of dolls house and Fort…. ) they left them to their own devices and they made many interesting things using their imagination and each told a story with it…
            When asked by the presenter of the show what would they sooner play with a PC or a cardboard box they all said the BOX! :-D

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          • How funny. I have a post I plan on sharing next week of the little ones playing with their cardboard. Now they want to check almost daily for any cardboard being left out for me. They know it’s for the garden, but also know I will let them play with it for a day or so before using it myself.

            I think that’s what’s wrong with most toys, they don’t leave enough to the child’s imagination. You can only play within a set of parameters built in to the design of today’s toys.

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    • I used to love looking through these kinds of catalogs, but while it seems there are a few new things each year, it just feels like a repeat of years past. I did enjoy the little ones laughter at the items they thought were truly funny.

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  2. Now I remember why I don’t miss getting catalogs in the mail. ha! Talk about tacky! I stay in budget at Christmas because I don’t buy gifts. My husband and I might exchange a few little things but we don’t buy anyone else anything and they don’t buy us anything. Works out. I used to love Christmas, but it’s just not fun anymore. I keep the SPIRIT of Christmas with me all year. We don’t need things we don’t need to celebrate.

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    • Jackie, I am shocked anyone buys this stuff. Who wants to receive these items as a gift?

      I like how you and your husband keep Christmas small and avoid the list of people to buy for. I keep my list as small as I can. I only buy for my 2 boys, their spouses, and children. Oh and since my ex comes to spend the holidays with us I get him some thing little each year. I’ve been known to buy him a copy of a movie I know he will enjoy for $1 when I find it.

      Personally, I wish we didn’t have one day we were expected to give gifts. I would much rather give a gift when I see something I want to give any time of the year. I think it means more to give a gift just because than to do it on a day when you feel obligated to give a gift.

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  3. Oh my, Lois, you found some gems this time! Lots of toilet and fart things this time…to bring out our inner third graders? ;-)

    And that locket is pretty creepy. Kind of reminds me of Courtney Love’s teddy bear. Ick.

    I’m going to get you the toilet turkey, though.

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    • Please don’t :-) The locket reminded me of the vials of blood Angelina Jolie and Billy Bob wore when they were married.

      You wouldn’t believe the items I passed up sharing just because I felt it was overkill. Being a minimalist is so much better, no tacky gifts. :-)

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    • Aren’t they though? And this is a Christmas catalog, so we are supposed to buy this stuff as gifts. No wonder people are less than happy about Christmas and the gifts they receive. Time to start a whole new holiday tradition that centers on love and not gifts.

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      • Yes, absolutely. We are very low key Christmas people but my son has a new American girlfriend so I am thinking she might be more into it than us…which we could do with improving our Christmas “spirit” :) People feel too pressured to spend what they can’t afford, it’s got crazy.

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        • Wendy, Christmas spending has gotten out of hand and some people try to outdo others on the amount they spend or the size of the gifts they give. How crazy.

          I’m sure your son’s girlfriend will appreciate seeing the other side of the consumerist holiday while with you. Even if she grew up with a big Christmas, she might learn from your ways and see a reason to spend less.

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          • I know here last year there was a big increase in homemade gift making and simplifying things, which is really nice.

            I think my son’s girlfriend may be disappointed at a barbecue lunch, our traditional kiwi Christmas :)

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          • I don’t think she will be disappointed unless she comes from an area with plenty of snow. It never felt quite like Christmas when I lived in warmer climates. At the same time, I would love to experience a holiday in another country to see how it is celebrated. That would be a novelty and I would enjoy that very much, I think she will too.

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  4. :) I love that the vacuum cover is uglier than the actual vacuum would be. Though apparently there are people out there who are willing to buy this stuff.

    I’ve received bad gifts over the years – but anything that you need to dust or display would make my list of bad gifts. Im a no clutter/dust catcher person (except for the things that Ive collected out of interest).

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    • Good point, Heidi, those covers are uglier than the vacuums. :-)

      I’ve traveled quite a bit and have collected a few things I love. I had one collection of Native American pieces which led to people buying me southwestern and Mexican plastic decorations. I hated them because the people who bought them didn’t know the difference between Native American art and Southwestern or Mexican, plus it was all mass produced, not one of a kind like I had. I finally changed my decor and hid my art pieces to get people to stop buying it, so I know exactly what you mean. ;-(

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    • Both have been around a long time. Years ago homes didn’t have many closets, Armoires were set in the rooms to hold the few clothing items the families had, so there was no way to put the vacuum away. To hide them they disguised it with a cover similar to these. But we have closets now, we don’t need to use these. I can’t get past the fact that people buy one thing, usually a bit pricey then buy all kinds of accessories for it that aren’t needed.

      My grandmother used to use tank and seat covers because their home was drafty and no heat went to the area where the bathroom was. She hated sitting on the cold seat. I thought it was pretty gross to sit on a cloth cover everyone else did.I’d rather be cold. :-)

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  5. Those are completely ridiculous! If you happen to find yourself on a plane with a SkyMall magazine, you will have blog post fodder for days (week, even)! The stuff inside that magazine (which presumably people are buying) blows my mind. I alternate between laughing hysterically and shaking my head in disbelief. Great way to kill time during a flight though. :-)

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    • Nancy, I don’t fly but now I want to see the SkyMall magazine. :-) I will ask my son about it next time he goes on vacation and see if he will bring one back to me. Glad you find some entertainment on your flights.

      I find myself shaking my head more than laughing. It’s just so sad that we use our natural resources to make such crap. To think people actually buy this stuff is unreal.

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  6. That guns are just… totally… aweful… *sighs*
    I never got something really bad, I guess. My parents mostly gave things we could use, and right now we spend 2€ for each person in the local thrift store. Oh yes, last year I got some cute candles that happened not to burn, but to just melt and smoke away. They were thrown away pretty soon ;-)

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    • Alynia, I love the thrift shopping, as long as a nice gift is found that you will use. I may have to steal this idea from you for my adult children and see if I can get them on board with the idea. I hate that they still insist on buying me gifts. I don’t need anything, so a thrift store purchase would be perfect.

      I’ve heard of smokeless candles, but yours is the first I’ve heard of candles that wouldn’t light and simply gave off smoke. :-) I would have tossed them away too.

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      • Well, they might have given a very tiny flame somewhere ;-)

        It ís a great idea – it was my father’s. We do not give presents with Christmas, but on St. Nicholas Eve, and it is mostly about having a nice evening together, with a lot of wraps, gluhwein and so on. Books always seem to be a nice option from the thrift shop – we all have often found marvellous books there, that we knew people would like – or things someone needs. But it can also be a kind of pun, like a set of two egg holders with little spoons and a small pepper and salt holder for a brother who started dating this year ;-)

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        • With the popularity of used book and media stores the practice of giving used gifts has become more acceptable, at least with my children and their spouses for which I am thankful. Book are a frequent gift here too. We are all big readers.

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  7. The vacuum cover is hilarious. The only ones to see my vacuum are the cats when they sneak in my closet. I have not started to buy Christmas gifts yet, but the past couple of years, I did well at sticking to a budget. One of the craziest pet gifts I received was an activity set for my cats (similar to the ones for babies). Turns out they loved it and it took over 2 years for it to finally be destroyed.

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    • Jodi, I too like to keep the vacuum in my closet. I am very close to being done with Christmas gifts, and look forward to having that out of the way.

      Isn’t it funny how our pets will love certain things. My last cat, (I am allergic to them now) loved cardboard boxes, nothing else.

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  8. Most of your please don’t buy me’ ‘fun purchases certainly are tacky yet the ‘ashes’ locket reminded that many years ago – think Victorian era – it was a tradition to wear a locket that comtained a lock of a deceased person’s hair. It’s possible this locket might appeal to someone.
    Perfect Polly reminds of a big seller not too long ago – the fish you hung on the wall that sang ‘Don’t Worry’ – wonder how many of those can be found in boxes and on tables at garage sales???

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    • Cathy, I thought of those fish when I was writing this. My step father has 3 of them which he has displayed on the walls of his dining room. He is so happy with them and loves to have them turned on. I think they are horrible and have turned them off when I had to visit. I guess I could see him creating a man cave or something and having them in there, but the dining room?

      I would rather carry a lock of hair than ashes. Being that I was a hairdresser, and still give children their first haircut, it is a practice to save the first hair for the parents. The hair doesn’t creep me out as much as a result.

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  9. Worst gift? Fluro orange jumpsuit/overalls from an aunt. NOT ok! I think I’ll post about gifts on Tuesday – I discourage getting gifts, but I got some well thought out ones at my housewarming (legitimately!) That vacuum cover was the creepiest!!

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  10. You remind me how much I dislike Christmas. I tend to ignore Christmas and celebrate the Winter Solstice instead, which is a few days before 25th Dec. On the Winter Solstice I make up my own rules of how I celebrate the day, and what gifts I might give. The Winter Solstice is a positive day for me as I know that the winter … cold and darkness… is in retreat. I am not a fan of winter.

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    • Alex, I very much dislike the shorter days of sunlight and celebrate the solstice privately mindful of the fact that more daylight hours will now be returning.

      I dislike the consumerism that comes with Christmas, it may have been fortunate that I was the oldest of my siblings and had my children while my siblings were still in school. They had very little money to spend and I asked them not to buy us gifts. My boys were taught that the holidays were about being with those we loved and not about the presents.

      While my boys refuse not to acknowledge me with some gift, it is small and useful, something well thought out and is their way of telling me they appreciated how I raised them. This year the gifts I am giving are mostly handmade or used and I love that my children appreciate the thought rather than the money of a gift.

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