Friday, February 8, 2008

My crazy father-in-law

My father in law is a great guy. He loves my husband, loves his grandkids and is generally a fun dude to be around. He's a bit... how to say it... simple? He's been a fisherman most of his life and grew up in a tiny town in the middle of nowhere. He barely knows how to use his cell phone. It isn't that he's dumb, he just lives a different life than a lot of us in modern day society. And he's happy as a clam about it.

He's also one of the worst gift givers ever. He means well, but he's just bad at picking out gifts. He came up today and for some reason decided to stop at WalMart on the way (he lives about 2 hours from us). First of all, he showed up at our house a good two hours after calling me to ask for directions off the freeway, since he came from a different direction (when he should have been about 10 minutes from our house). What he was doing that whole time, I don't know, other than shopping at WalMart. Unfortunately, my kids go to bed early, so he missed G by almost an hour and even though D went to bed late, he didn't see him much either.

But the gifts were the best. He bought D and G a Valentine's Day card, which was really sweet. He also got them each a little outfit; D's has a bulldozer on it, so it's immediately a winner. So those were good. But he also bought them both a box of chocolates - fine for D, but G... well, I just had to laugh at him buying an 8 month old a heart shaped box of chocolates. G gags on fruit puffs; even if I was willing to let him have that kind of stuff at this age, he'd never be able to handle it. It just made me laugh though, because my FIL simply doesn't know that kind of stuff. He'd be feeding G popcorn and peanuts if left to his own devices.

He also bought me something - and don't get me wrong here, I absolutely appreciate the thought. First was a bottle of wine. Where he got the idea that I'm a wine drinker, I don't know. I like a glass occassionally, but I almost never buy it. My husband rarely drinks and doesn't like wine and I could never get through a bottle fast enough to make it worth buying. Plus, I'm breastfeeding. Here, have a drink - maybe G will sleep through the night with some wine laced breastmilk!

But the kicker was the shirt he bought me with a great big sticker on the front that says, "Instantly Slims You!"

(insert bag over head here)

It was SO awkward! It wasn't like there was a blurb on the tag or something you'd have to search for to see. It was this huge, yellow sticker and everyone else saw it as he handed it to me. OMG.

I know he means well, and maybe he didn't even notice the sticker, just thought I'd like a nice shirt. And if he did notice it, I'm sure he figured, hey, she had a baby recently, she might like to look skinnier. It's the kind of logic he's famous for.


This is, of course, my father in law who told me when I started gaining weight in my late teens (I was dating my husband then), that it was nice to see me "filling out". But he did make up for it when I was pregnant with G; he kept exclaiming every time he saw me that I looked so skinny, despite the huge pregnant belly.

The man is honestly quite tactless, but in such a clueless way, it's hard to fault him for it. And hey, at least I get to eat G's chocolates... although maybe I shouldn't, if I need an "instantly skinnier" shirt from WalMart. What's a girl to do.


Stephanie said...

eat the candy!!!! then put the sticker on your forehead and take a picture then post it here:)

I'll share your chocolate said...

I'm cracking up!!! Sounds like his heart is in the right place, and I love that he was trying to do something nice.

The sticker though - yikes!