Every holiday I get together with my wife’s family. My wife has a fairly large family so every gathering has at least 30-40 relatives. They are the nicest people I have ever met, but towards the end of the evening after we have all had a nice peaceful dinner together, the atmosphere changes and becomes quite competitive. My wife’s family has a long running tradition of having a big Texas Hold’em tournament each time they all get together. The first time I attended one of the family parties my wife had told me that we would be playing poker so I was a bit nervous. You always want to make a good first impression and since I didn’t have much poker experience I didn’t want to look foolish. My wife said that it was all for fun (and a little money of course) and not to worry about things. I assumed that this meant everyone would take it easy on me, but I couldn’t have been more wrong. Everyone was actually happy at the fact that I knew very little about poker because that meant I was an easy money for them. I was the first person knocked out of the tournament and nobody showed me any mercy. I’m not sure if my wife felt bad for me or if she was embarrassed at how bad I was, but shortly after getting my butt kicked she surprised me with Master Poker: Professional No-limit Texas Hold’em Software. It’s basically a computer game for learning how to play Hold’em but how its different from other games is that it is actually like playing against real people rather than a computer. After using this software for a few months I was ready to take on my family. The next time we played I made it to the finals but one of the cousins kept getting dealt some unbelievable cards and he won the tournament. After that I ended up winning the next three tournaments and it was actually my wife that ended up knocking me off the winning streak because she started practicing with the software. So if you man likes to play poker at all, the Master Poker software is a great gift idea.
I am a coffee drinker. Every morning I stop at Starbucks on the way into work, and by mid-afternoon I usually make my way to the gourmet coffee shop that is a few blocks from my office. I really enjoy a good latte, espresso, or cup of dark roast coffee. I am typically an impatient person but I never mind waiting in line to get a good cup of coffee rather than getting the fast but poor tasting kind. The ironic part of all this is that on the weekends when I am at home and usually brewing my own coffee, I used a very cheap coffee maker that was at least 12 years old. I did buy pretty good coffee to brew, but now that I look back it was kind of silly of me to make such an effort during the week and none on the weekends. My wife noticed this irony and realized that this was an opportunity for her to get me a great gift. So for Christmas last year she bought me a Nespresso Espresso Maker. If you are not familiar with the Nespresso makers, they are basically a much smaller version of what Starbucks or other cafes use. The coffee and espresso that they sell is very good quality, and their machine allows me to make a Starbucks like latte, but at a quarter of the price. If your man enjoys a good cup of coffee or espresso, then a Nespresso is a great gift idea.
At least once a month, sometimes once a week, my wife buys me a scratch off lottery ticket. This has been going on for the past two years. When my wife and I first started dating, she noticed that every time I stopped to put gas in my car, I bought some lottery tickets. A few years ago I switched jobs and my commute became a small fraction of what it used to be, so instead of filling up with gas once a week, I now filled up once a month. So my wife decided one day to pick up a lotto ticket for me when she filled up with gas. If you don’t buy lotto tickets, you can get them for as little as $1 and they also offer tickets in some states up to $30. Most states will have at least $1, $2, $5, and $10 tickets. The first ticket she bought for me was a $5 ticket and I just happened to win $100 on it! So what do you think I did with the money? I used it to take my wife out to dinner of course. And from then on, my wife has been buying me lotto tickets. So if your man likes to gamble every now and then, lottery tickets are a great gift idea. They are inexpensive, are a nice little surprise, and if they do happen to be a winner, chances are the winnings will be spent on you .
This gift idea is simple and it’s free, but can be very meaningful. The gift is to turn off your mobile phone for the night. Technology has made it easier than ever to communicate with someone, but at the same time has made it extremely difficult. There used to be a time that when you were speaking with someone, you had their undivided attention. But with the evolution of the mobile phone, you are constantly competing for someones attention with email, text messages, Facebook, Twitter, Google+, Instagram, etc., etc. So next time you are with your man, turn off your phone and give it to him. Show him that he is the most important thing to you. And hopefully he will turn his off as well and you can spend an evening together without any distractions.