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to not buy MIL what she asked for for Christmas?

(63 Posts)
nightowl1 Mon 29-Nov-10 12:55:33

DH's mother dropped a Laura Ashley catalogue off at our house and pointed out a particular object that she wanted as a Christmas present. It costs about £20 more than I was planning on spending on any of our relatives this Christmas. We're trying not to spend too much as money is a bit tight at the moment and likely to get worse in the next 1-2 years. Besides, we had already planned out what we were going to get them for Christmas (or at least part of the present).

I just don't think MIL realises that her present request is out of our budget. I'm worried if I confront her about it directly she may take it the wrong way as she has helped us out in the past year and may feel she deserves something special for her. DH does not seem to have a problem with the expensive present (but generally he is not particularly great with money and he's part of the reason why we need to cut back this year!)

Would gift vouchers to contribute towards the present be a reasonable option?

mumblechum Mon 29-Nov-10 12:56:44

I'd buy her what she wants, especially as she's been kind enough to help you out.

Far bettr to get her what she actually wants.

oneortwo Mon 29-Nov-10 12:58:18

can you get her the tea towel from the back of the pic / next pic and act all proud pretending that's what you thought she meant? wink

did you ask her for ideas?

YouKnowStuffingisforLunch Mon 29-Nov-10 12:58:39

If you've already got a plan could you not say "you caught me on the back foot the other day, I should have told you then that we've already bought your present. We really hope you like it because it took a lot of thought. It's just a shame we can't get you that other thing you wanted."

Fibilou Mon 29-Nov-10 12:58:55

YANBU. I think it's really rude to give people only 1 option for gifts, surely you give a range of prices and people can choose accordingly.

I thank my lucky stars for my own MIL who, when asked what she would like for Christmas said "Oh don't worry about me, a box of chocolates would be lovely"

PaisleyLeaf Mon 29-Nov-10 13:02:48

Does your DH have siblings who might go in on it with you if it's what she'd really like?
Otherwise, I think do as Stuffing says.

ShanahansRevenge Mon 29-Nov-10 13:03:53

Unless you directy askeder to give ideas...then YANBU. It's awful to ask for things when people have kids.

nightowl1 Mon 29-Nov-10 13:06:00

She totally caught me off guard - She came round to visit to talk about Christmas - I thought it would be to talk about when we'd meet up as we haven't sorted plans out yet and instead she pulls out the catalogue!

She did say we could get her something similar instead but I have not seen anything similar (that's less expensive) anywhere else. She also gave me a detailed conversation about how much she'd love it for dinner parties...

Just a bit annoyed that she's put us in the position of having to get her this gift or risk upsetting her.

nightowl1 Mon 29-Nov-10 13:06:57

Unfortunately DH is an only child

plupervert Mon 29-Nov-10 13:08:19

If she doesn't realise, and is a reasonable person, perhaps you could just say, "Look, we're really sorry, but we have to cut back on presents this year, and this is just too much. If we spent this on you, we would be obliged to do it for [insert names here] as well, and then we would have to cancel DC's [activity] in the New Year or find something else."

If she is nice and reasonable, she will be mortified and anxious to help. If she really wants this Laura Ashley thing, you could agree on vouchers so she can get it. It all depends on your relationship with her.

bubbleOseven Mon 29-Nov-10 13:08:57

YANBU to be miffed but, in the interests of family harmony,just get her what she asks for.

Can you tell us how much the gift that she wants costs?

JustBeachy Mon 29-Nov-10 13:09:17

What is it? I bet mumsnet can find a similar cheaper thing? grin

Dexterrocks Mon 29-Nov-10 13:09:41

Could you give her vouchers towards the item she wants and the bit of the gift you had already planned? That would meet her half way.

PaisleyLeaf Mon 29-Nov-10 13:09:47

If you fancy showing us what it is - we might be able to help you find 'similar' ideas.

sims2fan Mon 29-Nov-10 13:10:15

I think you should just say something like 'I hope you don't mind but we're not spending that much on presents this year, and we really don't mind if people don't spend a lot, or not give us anything, either.' That's what we've done with my husband's family, who typically ask for specific things, which are often out of our budget. Because my husband is from that family he finds it difficult not getting what they want so I have been telling him for months, 'we're only going to be able to spend about a fiver on each person for Christmas this year' and I think it has sunk in, as he told his own sister the other day that we weren't going to be spending much on presents this year.

booyhoo Mon 29-Nov-10 13:12:28

i don't think you need to confront her about this, but i do think it is a good idea to let her know that her choice of gift is more than you could afford to spend and you would be happy to give her teh money that you would have spent ona gift so she can put it towards that thing herself.

nightowl1 Mon 29-Nov-10 13:15:29

this is it

SkyBluePearl Mon 29-Nov-10 13:16:52

yes gift vouchers for laura ashley sound perfect. maybe appologise and say you have had to really cut back this year but would have loved to have bought it her outright. She might even find the object cheaper in the laura ashly sales - you never know.

iamusuallybeingunreasonable Mon 29-Nov-10 13:18:43

Yanbu, nobody should expect anything let alone make requests, how bloody cheeky! Tell her nothing, prrsent her with her gift, if she says anything she's very ungrateful

Plus, why isn't her son buying it, typical bloke hey!

bubbleOseven Mon 29-Nov-10 13:19:39

How much were you planning on spending and how much help has she given you this year?

traceybath Mon 29-Nov-10 13:20:43

et voila

Longtalljosie Mon 29-Nov-10 13:21:33

Firstly - it's on 3 for 2. Could you get other relatives stuff from there as well which would offset against the cost? If you bought 2 presents for £20 and that cake stand you'd save £20 and thus on average you'd spend £21 per present...

Lakeland have an acrylic one - but there'll be something else closer...

Longtalljosie Mon 29-Nov-10 13:22:05

Oh well done Tracey!

herbietea Mon 29-Nov-10 13:22:06

Message withdrawn

EricNorthpolesChristmas Mon 29-Nov-10 13:22:07

I think they share their money ianusually....

Get the vouchers. Skyblue makes a good point about the sales. Unless you can buy it and give it to both PILs as a joint present? With a £5 botlle of wine for FIL? grin

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