In my family, it's kind of a point of honor to give gifts without asking for gift suggestions. The idea is to pay attention to the recipient's interests and style, likes and dislikes, and come up with the perfect gift all on your own.
That's why it was such a surprise when Hubby's family started asking me for gift suggestions. Before we were even married.
And then, do you know what happened? They started asking me for gift suggestions for other people. Like my husband and kids. Why they didn't ask the husband and kids directly, I don't know, other than the fact that they must think I'm a lot more "together" than I really am.
The trouble was, I can't think on the spot like that. I would have ideas in mind, but when someone asked me, I'd go blank. Ugh. Performance anxiety.
So I made a running gift list. Whenever I thought of a gift idea for myself or someone else in my family, I would write it down. In one location, instead of on post-it notes and on the backs of receipts all over the house.
Now, whenever someone asked me for a gift suggestion, I was prepared.
My life was sooooo much easier (because, you know, the asking, it was constant. No, not really).
But there was still an itsy bitsy problem. I didn't know which gift suggestions to suggest to which people. It's a lot of pressure, deciding who should give me what. And it doesn't feel right for me to be deciding that, anyway. So I went high tech, and put our family's lists online (I use google sites--it's free and super easy). Now when someone wants to give us a gift, all they have to do is navigate over to our family gift website and pick something. They get good gift suggestions, and I get to be surprised. Sort of. Win.
Either way you go with this--pen and paper or electronic, it'll make your life easier. Promise.