18 year old birthday boy ... dilemma on gift - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 9 Old 12-11-2009, 01:50 PM - Thread Starter
 
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2 years ago my friends' eldest son went off to college. I had gotten an invitation to his 18th birthday party but could not attend. However a few weeks later I sent him a check for $50 and congratulated him on going to college.

Now I have received an invitation for her second son's 18th birthday. I could attend but I won't be able to give him $50. I presume he too will go to college next year but not sure our circumstances will change much by then.

Of late for any occasion I have been giving baked goods or paintings made by my daughter. Other adults enthusiastically appreciate this since they aren't looking for gifts anyway. For a child's birthday I would not do this but give a present costing about $10.

But I have no idea what I could give an 18 year old boy that would be within $10. Anything like a gift certificate or a check, I feel, should be the same as what I gave his brother 2 years ago. She has 7 children so probably I should have thought more carefully 2 years ago before writing the amount on the check.

I don't think it is appropriate for me to ask my friend about this. Hence wondering if you all would have any ideas.

Though I am close to my friend, and have often attend the birthdays of her younger kids who are closer to my kid's age, I don't think our absence from her son's 18th birthday bash will be very much noticed. Probably he will be busy with all his friends of his own age and my friend has invited me out of courtesy. The distance (in miles) is enough that we would not be assumed to attend.

Is it better to
- send a greeting card only (home-made)
- send some kind of gift (not cash / gift certificate) within the amount I can afford
- send a gift certificate of $10

relaxed-unschooler mama to dd (2003). hoping for second one. love being a mama!!
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#2 of 9 Old 12-13-2009, 01:22 AM
 
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I just saw this and I don't really belong in here, but I got gifts/cards of all sorts when I graduated high school....I would say most of them were $20-25 range, or some of the gifts were girly spa type stuff probably bought at dollar tree for less than $15. Gift amounts don't offend/bother me as long as it isn't blatantly tacky (i.e. my aunt once "regifted" me a used bathmat with dirty footprints still visible). I personally would not someone to break their budget over me or my dc. I'm sure your friend has enough sense to know that the economy is bad right now and lots of ppl are struggling.

Just bring a nice, thoughtful card, and whatever gift you can afford. If it's only $10, make it a GC to someplace fun like tropical smoothie cafe or starbucks or something.

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#3 of 9 Old 12-13-2009, 02:22 AM
 
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You know, even something like a $10 (or whatever amount you can afford) gift certificate to iTunes would be nice. It's something handy to have in his account whenever he runs across a new song he wants to buy.

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#4 of 9 Old 12-13-2009, 02:03 PM
 
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I would probably try to do a combination of your ideas. A nice card, some goodies (cookies, etc) and a $10 g/c to Starbucks (great idea waiting2bmommy!) so it almost seems like its an equal gift, yk?
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#5 of 9 Old 12-15-2009, 01:34 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thanks for these interesting suggestions. Combination sounds like a winner.

I am *really* behind the times, so can you tell me if itunes is something *every* teen would use? Can I jsut assume that an itunes gift certificate would be useful or is it better to ask first?

relaxed-unschooler mama to dd (2003). hoping for second one. love being a mama!!
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#6 of 9 Old 12-27-2009, 11:42 PM
 
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I wouldn't assume that every kid has use for an itunes card. My daughter does, my son doesn't. He prefers to buy the cds, rip them to his laptop, and then upload songs to his phone and/or mp3 (non-ipod). I'd likely do a B&N or Amazon g/c if I knew the kid was a reader. Otherwise, I'd stick to a Starbucks, Dunkin' Donuts, WaWa/7-Eleven g/c.
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#7 of 9 Old 12-28-2009, 12:35 PM
 
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How about a book on how to survive college? With tips for living on your own?

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#8 of 9 Old 12-29-2009, 12:52 AM
 
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I agree... iTunes is great, but Starbucks is really "every teen".
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#9 of 9 Old 01-03-2010, 02:45 PM
 
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Quote:
Originally Posted by bestjob View Post
I agree... iTunes is great, but Starbucks is really "every teen".
Neither of my teens go to Starbucks. Seriously - a generic gift card is better. The kid can use it for anything.
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