Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Gift Ideas for the Men, from Man Crates

I don't know about the rest of you women reading this, but I always have a hard time deciding just what to get Cameron for Christmas, his birthday, his half birthday, his favorite holidays, his work anniversaries, our anniversary, etc. Okay, just kidding...we don't really do gifts or celebrate all of those. But I feel like even the few times during the year when it really counts, I just can't think of a gift that he'll love! 

I've gone with supplies for his latest hobby, but often I end up getting the wrong thing or that hobby wanes shortly after. I've gone with clothes...but he's not really interested in clothes. Two things I can always count on are books (especially trivia, how to, or science related books) and some sort of special homemade cookie...a whole box all to himself. But beyond that, I'm pretty clueless most years.

The awesome people at Man Crates polled men and women to see what these men actually wanted and what women thought they wanted when it comes to gifts, and they've shared their information with us in a great infographic!  For those of you who don't know, Man Crates--as the name suggests--specializes in crafting great gifts for men to fit many hobbies. They understand gifting, and want to help us improve our gifting too! I enjoyed going through this...it gave me gift ideas I'd never thought of. Tickets?! Genius.

So, if you have a manly man that stumps you when it comes to gift giving, maybe this will give you some good ideas! We'll add in a few of our ideas after the infographic. 

Man Crates Holiday Infographic

Here are a few things I've learned from my experiences with Man Gifting (or just gifting in general):
  1. If it's a big ticket item, make sure you know exactly what to get. This may take some stealthy (or not so stealthy) sleuthing, but it's better to know than to spend a lot of money on the wrong thing. This is why when it comes to guns in our family we let everyone buy their own...we're all pretty specific with what we like and want.
  2. When I first read over the list of memorable gifts men have received I thought that it was a little simple and only for specific types of men. But as I've thought on it more, it really encompasses so much!

    As a non-drinker, when I read the word "beer" I immediately think of BudLight...and Coors? Yeah, I think that's the other main one. Beyond that I'm clueless. So at first that sounded very limited, but it's not. In our family we give sodas. Now, not just Root Beer, or Dr. Pepper, or Sprite, but we go and find fun flavors, fancy sodas, unique sodas (one year it was bacon and chocolate soda, last year was prickly pear soda).

    Take something normal and explore it a little bit. Does you man love a good Dark Chocolate? Find him some fun new flavor to try. Does he love beer? Find a great brew in a beautiful bottle! Does he enjoy cooking? Check out a kitchen supply store and get a small new gadget. You get the drift. Take the normal and just push it a little beyond what you might pick up on any normal given day. That gives things a special touch!
  3. If your man has Hobby ADD, steer away from supplies for the current hobby. This has kinda become a joke with both Cameron and I. When we moved we both cleaned out drawers that contained unused, or little used, supplies we were given for our random interests. Sometimes it's hard to tell if a hobby is here to stay or not, so one item to fit the current interest is definitely fun and exciting, but don't go all out and get every tool and supply they might need for a hobby until you know it's here to stay.
  4. If all else fails, go for humorous. Some of the gag gifts we've given each other have been the favorite. Like the year everyone in my family made Cameron a gag coyote call because he'd really been wanting one. He got "calls" made from paper towel tubes, tapes, soda tabs, you name it. Then to be funny my sister gave ME a real coyote call...it's a year we'll always remember and laugh about.
  5. The wrapping. I have to agree 100% with the Infographic. It doesn't have to be beautiful for him to enjoy it. Send him on a scavenger hunt. Wrap a little gift in a huge box. Wrap it in brown craft paper and let the kids color it, or write him a love note, or anything really. One year my uncle gave my dad a gift that was inside a pipe with caps that had been welded on. He had to figure out how to cut into it to get the gift, and that was half that fun of the whole present!
  6. Have someone with a good sense of humor? Wrap up a few of their normal items they already own and put them under the tree. It makes for some funny reactions! Just don't take something they'll really need like an inhaler, a school book, or their deodorant (unless you don't mind B.O.). 
What tips would you add to this when it comes to figuring out the right gift for the men in your life? 


  1. Guns are in the top 5 for gifts??!?!?!

  2. Honest, non-judgemental question: do people really give one another guns?! This astounds me. I literally cannot think of the context.

    1. Yep! In some parts of the country this seems absurd and in other parts, it fits. And it all varies by family. We know some families where when the boys turn 12 they get their first rifle for Christmas. We know other families that won't give a squirt gun as a gift. Neither way is wrong, it just goes with each families living situation, area, and feelings. One context to imagine gun giving would be these southwestern ranch families who have guns for protecting them and their livestock from predators of varying kinds (a very legitimate use for those families).

    2. Ah yeah, that makes more sense; thanks for clarifying!

  3. Guns are good gifts here, too, but like you, we let everyone choose their own. The gunsmith down the street offers gift certificates (the old fashion paper, handwritten kind. Cool.) and you can redeem for anything in the store. That is what my daughter is giving me this Yule. I have always like target and skeet shooting with rifles and shotguns, but it is time to give pistols their turn. I no longer live in the country and there is not any real crime in this village (really), so defense is not the focus of having a gun, it is the sport, which, by the way, for me, does not include hunting; I would not be able to do that safely and with the level of responsibility I would need.

    Seriously, shooting at a range is just as relaxing as knitting, just louder.

    1. Oh my gosh, I LOVE your last line!! That is the best thing I've heard all day.

  4. I gave my husband a gun for my wedding present. (We're not from the south, we don't really hunt or wear camo, and we have all our teeth.) He has asked for more ties though...

  5. Lucky me...my husband'e happy with a new Tee or Sweat shirt


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