Gift for her family
February 25, 2007 2:47 PM   Subscribe

I am visiting my girlfriend's family for the first time and want to pick up an appropriate gift.

Probably, I would like to pick up a gift for her niece who is about an year old. Something that is not too pretentious, not too expensive, but will be memorable. I am very apprehensive about meeting them and staying with them and don't want the gift to be a big deal but still want to show I am thankful and appreciative.
posted by anonymous to Grab Bag (13 answers total) 4 users marked this as a favorite
A one year old might appreciate a nice wooden toy from Melissa and Doug or from this guy on Etsy (My daughter adores the grasshopper toy. Its legs make a little "click, clack" sound as you pull it. The bunny's bottom goes up and down just like a hopping bunny when you pull it. ) It's classy, not too expensive, but also very nice.
posted by jeanmari at 2:56 PM on February 25, 2007

Your favorite book from when you were a kid. I tend to go with a move "grown up" gift kind of book - one of Shel Silverstien's books of poetry, a set of Little House on the Prarie, a nicely bound Anne of Green Gables or Black Beauty.
posted by dpx.mfx at 3:05 PM on February 25, 2007

Food (wine, chocolates, regional specialty of your home) or flowers is the time-honored house-visit gift for adults.

A pull-toy or other small toy along those lines would be perfect for the little one. Another supplier is Oompa Toys.
posted by LobsterMitten at 3:08 PM on February 25, 2007

If you're able to plan ahead and have something made, and if $40 isn't too expensive, these baby-name puzzle stools have been hits with parents I know.
posted by GaelFC at 3:13 PM on February 25, 2007

Plush Microbes went over well with a friend of mine.
posted by krisjohn at 3:26 PM on February 25, 2007

The Plush Microbes are cute, but if you don't know them at all, maybe stick with a wooden pull toy or a hard cover book.
posted by k8t at 3:36 PM on February 25, 2007

Two previous questions about toys for one year-olds are here and here.
posted by paduasoy at 4:02 PM on February 25, 2007

Seconding jeanmari's link to "the guy on Etsy". I have been buying his fabulous well-made toys since I was very young, and I haven't seen him for years, so thank you jeanmari for a blast from the past!
posted by nursegracer at 4:08 PM on February 25, 2007

I would also bring flowers. They're always a big hit. Don't just get the $12 grocery store "mixed" bouquet. Spend a bit more and get a proper bouquet for $25-$30. Ask your GF what her mom (and dad) like / colors / etc. This is a nice way to brighten up the house and it will ingratiate you to the parents, which is more important than pre english-speaking member of the family.

I'm saying "also" because I think you should also get something for the rug rat. But be a man and bring flowers, too.
posted by zpousman at 5:20 PM on February 25, 2007

The flowers are a good idea.
posted by selfmedicating at 6:36 PM on February 25, 2007

If not flowers a really nice medium sized plant.

It lasts a lot longer!
posted by informity at 1:23 AM on February 26, 2007

I love those puzzle stools! If I were you I'd get something for the child and maybe some chocolates for the family.
If they make you feel really welcome I would send the lovely flowers as a thank you after you get back. Even a nice card, just don't forget the thank you, I think it is as important as the first impression gift.
posted by Wilder at 6:02 AM on February 26, 2007

When my SO visited my parents for the first time, he brought a cookbook of local recipes. It was a big hit and my mom made one of the recipes while he was there. Probably cost him less than $25. Easy to pack and bring too.

Personally, I would focus on the overall and not one particular person. I once had someone give me a hospitality thank-you gift (instead of my parents/family) and it didn't go over well.
posted by ml98tu at 7:16 AM on February 26, 2007

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