1. I...am a little scared and not going to add it up right now. I am also not entirely finished shopping. 2. Most expensive: we got my youngest brother a GoPro, which I am super excited to give him ($200, eek) 3. The least expensive gift will be something small TBD for my brother's girlfriend. I am pretty sure she's not planning to do gifts for my family but I wanted to get her some little token because she's really great for my brother and I'm really happy about that. (If anyone has good ideas for gifts for a 20-something girl you don't know very well... let me know) 4. No 5. N/a 6. Yes, but I got a completely unexpected holiday bonus and have already paid off most of the balance. 7. I really do, even though I will wince when the statements arrive. This is the first year that neither of us is in grad school, that we have two decent incomes, and that we're not planning a wedding, so we went a bit overboard. We got married this year and our families did so much for us, and it's really fun to be able to splurge a little on them. No regrets.
@ATF oh dang I love Ribelle so much, enjoy!! (Their brunch is also amazing and it's usually surprisingly easy to get a table.)
I definitely don't feel like I have to buy gifts for my friends' kids, but shopping for toys and tiny things is so.much.fun.
@honey cowl If it's not going to blow your budget, get it. I bought two wedding dresses-- the first at a sample sale for $200, and then the one I actually wore from BHLDN for $600. I am not the type to buy any sort of expensive clothing and I really agonized over buying the second one. I was definitely trying overly hard to not be high maintenance and crazy and my best friend had to sit me down and tell me it was okay to want to look the way I wanted on my wedding day. We just got all of our photo prints from our wedding so I've been looking at the dress a lot, and I'm so so happy I went for the one I really wanted.
@moreadventurous ask your gyno for a recommendation! (if that works in your network). I had only a gynecologist for a while and she eventually was like...yeah you actually do need to have a PCP, go see my doctor.
@cjm Yes, this is so important...the headline is an eyeroller, but if they're making that much money she's unlikely to get any assistance from anywhere. I know people like this and I hate to hear wealthy bootstrappy parents brag about how their kid is going to pay their own way through college...just zero regard for how the system actually works. If you think your kid can make $45,000 a year with side jobs and summer work, I would like some of whatever you're smoking.
@garli I had a job where we did this, partially because it was so much cheaper to have a party on a random Friday in February. (And also when you live in New England it's really important to have fun things to look forward to in February.)
My work party is actually great (and I say that as someone who generally hates forced merriment). We leave work at 2ish on a Friday and go have a delicious lunch with an open bar. I think it's a good balance -- it's casual, nobody frets about bringing spouses, getting really dressed up, etc. but the combo of an afternoon off/good food/open bar is very nice and relaxing, and I think most people feel like it's a really nice gesture of thanks.
@zeytin Thanks for the tip! I have also have been very frustrated with J. Crew sweaters recently-- I have a merino one I bought this year and have worn maybe four times that is already pilling under the arms.
@WhyHelloThere So I definitely do remember, at least within a range of maybe 20 bucks... mainly because I almost never buy anything at full price and I'm always watching and waiting for things to go on sale.