Sunday, March 11, 2012


They say everyone has a gift.

That special something that makes them stand out from a crowd.
For myself, I assume my writing and patience (with other people's children). While Bryan has near photographic memory and excellent navigational skills.

My best friend Ashley is a fantastic photographer, however her other skill only comes to play on special occasions. I assume there are others who have this gift. I do believe they are a limited breed. Some try to replicate this unsuccessfully or with limited success. My sister, for example, tries but has yet to duplicate.

What is this gift, you ask?

Why, dear Ashley has the super human ability to choose the most original and fascinating presents!

While this does not seem too big of deal at first, take a moment to think back to the last function you attended.

Were there any gifts received that stood out for originality or function?

Did the recipient seem to favor one gift over all the rest?

Chances are, if Ashley is at a function, it will be her gift that takes the cake!

For example, this past Christmas, Mo and Maeve received personalized pillowcases.
Not just their names, THEIR FACES on the pillows!
Mo with Mo

For our wedding, Ashley found a print of our reception site and had it framed. Not soon after Moira's birth, a framed sketch of a newborn Mo arrived courtesy of Ashley.

To say, I enjoy being the recipient of these gifts is an understatement. 

The gift that seemed to get the biggest reaction was at my baby shower. 

The collective swoon of the room was audible from the outside as I unwrapped her gifts. 12 items from bibs to Easter basket, frames to sleepers, for the 12 months of the year.

Bry, my enormous belly & boobs, and me opening presents.

It has been four years since that shower, and I will admit, that gift made quite the impression on me. I kept that idea deep in the recesses of my brain, hoping to copy it for someone myself.

They say imitation is the highest form of flattery, so Ash remember that!

Our good friends Lynsay & Steve are expecting their first baby, a little boy, the end of April. 
They are a fun couple, as evident by the photos below. 

As I searched her registry, Ashley's gift to me slowly crept its way into my conscious.

Do it Jackie! Just do it!

My brain seemed to say.

She'll appreciate that you liked her idea. 

Lynsay will love it! 

The other guests will love it too!

You'll be that one that gives the gift that people talk about. 

Yes, that was part of the motivation for this gift.
Other guests will talk about it, perhaps even copy it themselves.

Remember how I'm a bit of party planning nut?
Apparently something rubbed off onto me as with this shower I went a bit overboard! My enthusiasm for party planning was somehow transferred into this gift. 

In the end, fourteen books and various gifts were collected as I started at birth and ended with first birthday.

The Books for the Year

April: Birth
May: Mother's Day
June: Father's Day
July:  Fourth of July
August: Beach
September: Phillies

October: Halloween
November: Thanksgiving
December: Christmas

January: Eagles/Snow
February: Valentine's Day
March: St. Patrick's Day

April: Easter
First Birthday

To package it all, I purchased a tub at Five Below. Wrapping each gift, and adding a numbered card to the front, I ensured she unwrapped them in the correct order. 

I could have left well enough alone. It was adorable. The colors coordinated with the baby's nursery. 

But no, 

I had to keep going. 

I had to write something.

Okay, I had to write fourteen somethings. 

For each gift I wrote a little rhyme, and at the shower made her read each aloud. 

I'm that crazy, neurotic person, spending way too much time and putting forth way too much energy towards a baby shower gift. 

And as a result the gift was appreciated. 

Who am I kidding? 

It was a huge hit and most definitely "The Gift" of the shower. 
Sorry ladies, I did love those Polo onesies Sarah and the monkey hamper was adorable!

As Lynsay was unwrapping, I fielded a few questions.

"Is that from pinterest?"


"Did you find it on a blog"


"What a fabulous idea!"

Thanks (under my breath Ashley!).

"You should totally pin it!" 

Plan to!

"I think you should blog about it!"

If only you saw me in my dining room taking pictures a few hours ago as I wrapped this sucker, you'd have realized that a blog post was under way.  

"I totally am going to steal this idea!"

Feel free, I already did! 
For a list of the books and rhymes click HERE!

And if a function comes up and you find yourself unsure what to give. Drop me and email and I'll ask Ash. I bet she has a great idea!!

Ash & Jac
March 2008


  1. OH my goodness if you could see me now then you would see that I am bowing to you greatness for gift giving!

    I am blown away by this idea and the poems for each, I just went and read them, just wonderfully creative!

    And your photographer friend doing those pillows, just precious! You gals are lucky to have each other.

  2. Jen, you are so right! We are beyond lucky to have each other!

  3. Jac, awesome job =) You definitely did everything perfectly!!!!!!! I am honored that you wrote about my creative gift giving. I am willing to help anyone who needs it =) Love you. (but next time, ask me for a pic of us, i have some better ones!!) :P

    1. C'mon, it's from my BABY SHOWER! I had to put that pic!!

  4. Oh my goodness! That is so awesome! You know you're going to have to do this for all of your friend's baby showers now, right? ;)
    Awesome, awesome idea!!

    1. What's great Jen, is that most of my friend's are already done w/babies!


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