Help please with $40 gift for 17 secretaries in my conference

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Posted 12/4/2012 by dietcokejunkee in NSBR Board
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dietcokejunkee
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:21:38 PM
I have to buy a gift for the 17 secretaries in our athletic conference. The budget is $40 each. In the past we have received restaurant gift cards, weird ornaments from Pier One and a Christmas platter.

I was thinking a platter and towel or cheese spreader (or similar type thing) from Pier One or William Sonoma, etc. or maybe a Cheesecake Factory gift card? There's a new one opening tomorrow in the big mall in the area (convenient to all but one of the secretaries...but she could get up here, she's just more rural).

I could do an Amex/Visa, gift card...

Spa gift card?

What would you like to receive if this was for you? We are an ethnically diverse group in the south suburbs of Chicago. Most are over 40, several over 50yo, if that helps.

I appreciate any suggestion!

Also, I am not going to do any candles, etc as one lady is super allergic/sensitive to everything, especially scents.

peaname
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:23:19 PM
I would love to get a Cheesecake Factory gift crd. At my age I have all the kitchen 'stuff' ill ever need.


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MerryMom937
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:26:50 PM
I would more appreciate the VISA gift card to use at the store of my choice.

I'm probably in the minority here, but I really don't care for Cheesecake Factory (gasp).

Nancie52
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:29:04 PM
I second the Cheescake Factory gift card... I'm sure it's hard to get something that will fit everyone, but eating out is always a good thing!!

Spa with mani/pedi also good..


katebroccoli
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:31:30 PM
The Visa or spa gift cards would be for me.

I actually don't like Cheesecake Factory, either (but I am certainly in the minority with that opinion among my friends and family).

I have never in my life used a cheese spreader, though if you don't want to go the gift card route, I would certainly appreciate the thought behind the platter and/or towel.



finally~a~mama
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:31:47 PM
AmEx/visa gift card. Surely that would be something everyone could use & no one could complain about.




myboysnme
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:33:03 PM
I can't imagine a secretary who couldn't use and appreciate a Visa gift card. That is perfect.


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pennyring
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:35:34 PM
Visa gift cards are always appreciated!

Personally, I LOVE LOVE LOVE Diamond candles. Not everyone does, but I've converted a ton of my girlfriends.




Momof1sweet-lil-lad
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:38:38 PM
Visa gift card.





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Peal
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:39:28 PM
Amex/Visa gift card. If not that than movie tickets gift card.

I know I would not want a spa certificate. I have never been comfortable with spa treatments, even a mani/pedi. I don't think I am the only one.


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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:41:49 PM
There something that says you really care when you give Tiffany. Everyone should be able to say they received Tiffany, at least, once. This little crystal bowl has stars on it and you can write something about how your secretatries are "stars". These are $35. Opening that little blue box is so exciting.

Tiffany Crystal Bowl


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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:47:55 PM
I would say the Visa or Amex gift card as most probably already have all the kitchen stuff they could want. Not all will go to the spa - wasted $100 for my MIL once and she refused to go. While I love Cheesecake Factory (but then again it has been more than 9 years since I have been) obviously not everyone does.


Patti

SmartyPants71
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:49:08 PM
I would prefer a Visa or Target gift card and maybe something little like a nice dark chocolate bar. Just be careful with the fees on the Visa gift card. We just bought a $100 Visa gc as a wedding gift, and in small print it said that it charged $4.95 to activate. I don't think all of them do that, but we bought ours from CVS.

maryannscraps
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:56:25 PM
I would have said gc, but that Tiffany bowl is adorable. I'd keep it on my dresser and keep my rings in it.

Hi-D
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Posted: 12/4/2012 2:56:58 PM
I'd love the Tiffany bowl one of the previous posters suggested. Something I would never buy for myself.

AnneMD
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:04:58 PM
I'd definitely go with the Tiffany bowl! That is something special that they would not buy themselves - and it just seems more personal. I'd LOVE a little blue box under my tree...



liya
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:14:34 PM
I agree that everyone loves the little blue box from Tiffany's. A Visa gift card would be nice too (and yup I think they do have an activation fee that was mentioned.)
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kimberly38
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:15:09 PM
I don't recommend the Visa card, because you have to pay a fee to activate the card. Usually 3-5 dollars. Do on top of your forty, that is another 3-5 dollars or deduct that from the forty.

I would love a cheesecake factory giftcard, but you never know with people's diets.

I say a Walmart or Target gift card. I would love one of these because I could then turn around and buy something for myself or possibly for someone else.

As much as I love the crystal bowl, I do not need something else to dust.

Ms. GreenGenes
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:19:49 PM
As much as I'd love to open a Tiffany box, I don't want a knickknack. I want jewelry.

I'd go for the restaurant GC or similar gift card.


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sues
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:25:32 PM
Hey- you must be near me. I was just at the mall yesterday (which is only a mile from me)and the flurry of activity around the CF while they get ready to open tomorrow is something to behold. I'm happy they're opening here.

That said, I'd prefer a Visa gift card over a specific store/restaurant gift card. You can package it with a cute, inexpensive ornament if you want, to make it more festive.

Carolann
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:30:55 PM
Speaking as a secretary, I would appreciate the Visa card; I could then spend it for something that I really wanted. Perhaps it could be packaged with some candy. I also like the Tiffany bowl but I know a lot of people don't like "dust catchers" sitting around.

Creativegirl
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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:31:48 PM

I would prefer a Visa or Target gift card and maybe something little like a nice dark chocolate bar. Just be careful with the fees on the Visa gift card. We just bought a $100 Visa gc as a wedding gift, and in small print it said that it charged $4.95 to activate


I agree- I'd go with a Target gift card packaged in a cute way (with a simple ornament or treat) unless you can find one of the credit card types with no fee - even a few dollars each will really add up when you are purchasing 17 of them!


Anna




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Posted: 12/4/2012 3:58:16 PM
Amex /Visa or Target gift card. Easy for you and sure to please such a diverse group of people with many different needs and interests.



dietcokejunkee
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Posted: 12/4/2012 4:04:50 PM
Thanks everyone for the ideas! I LOVE the Tiffany idea! Oh, how I would love a little blue box. I called the closest Tiffany's and they only 4 in stock. They ship for free, but I have the tax exempt thing to deal with and getting a check from school district office, etc. Not sure if I have enough time and how that works but I'll call them and check.

Sues, I work at Sandburg and live in Oak Forest. I've never been in CF so it's more of a selfish reaason I wanted to buy the gc from there ...but one school is in Bradley/Bourbonnais and that's a hike to the mall.

Boss didn't seem too keen on the gc only idea, maybe I can get a small ornament or mug to go with it. I'll run these ideas past him in the morning.

Thanks again everyone!

ginacivey
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Posted: 12/4/2012 4:15:03 PM
Etched popcorn bowl!

sues
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Posted: 12/4/2012 4:17:28 PM
Gina... don't steal my idea! LOL

ksuheather
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Posted: 12/4/2012 4:55:07 PM
I love the Tiffany bowl.



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Posted: 12/4/2012 4:56:41 PM
For mass gifting I think generic gift card is the way to go, like a Visa/MC GC. I got a $50 Kirkland's card two or three years ago now and I have yet to use it. Nothing I like or want in that store.


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Nicole in TX
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Posted: 12/4/2012 6:15:50 PM
I wouldn't care for the bowl. It isn't something that I would ever use. A VISA gift card would be lovely.



2boysandwill
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Posted: 12/4/2012 6:19:48 PM
I'd do the bowl...

Sister BDSQ
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Posted: 12/4/2012 6:24:55 PM
I love the bowl idea. Or a Coach item.

Cindy March
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Posted: 12/4/2012 7:18:04 PM
How about a gift/fruit basket from Harry & David?



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2peafaithful
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Posted: 12/4/2012 7:21:04 PM
Gift card for restaurant, spa or mall.

IScrapCrap
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Posted: 12/4/2012 7:23:45 PM
I don't know if a platter would be a popular gift.

AKathy
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Posted: 12/4/2012 7:24:53 PM
I wouldn't care at all where the bowl came from, it'd still be just a dust collector to me. I'd go for the Visa gift card. That way everyone can get something they'd truly like to have. It'd be impossible to find something that 17 people would honestly want.


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WinoGirl
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Posted: 12/4/2012 7:41:55 PM

I know I would not want a spa certificate. I have never been comfortable with spa treatments, even a mani/pedi. I don't think I am the only one.


No you are not the only one; I'm not a spa person either.

gc or that Tiffany bowl is really nice too. Knowing me, I'd keep the Tiffany box it came in too

renateb
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:31:05 PM
While I'd like a GC to the Cheese Factory (I assume you live near Orland Park since that's the once opening in the S. Sub.), $40 doesn't go far for 2 people there.

Marcus Theater GC can be creatively wrapped. Whole Foods and Trader Joes are nearby. While I don't shop there, if I had a Gift Card, I would go check these stores out and probably be pleasantly surprised.

Mario Tricoci I believe is also nearby. A gift certificate for there would be a gift just for her.

I work at a school, and the favorite gift tends to be Gift Card for Target, Walgreens or CVS (practical).

Gizzard
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:32:13 PM
Gift card...preferably visa. I need money way more than I need stuff.


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simplekelly
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:40:51 PM
This is why gift giving sucks. Dust collector. Hate that place. Weird ornament. Impersonal gift card---there is no thought involved. Etc.

I have to buy for teachers and another 30 staff members in my school. Someone always complains. So. What I would do is try for the Tiffany Bowl and make a nice saying about how they help the company reach for the stars. Or they are the star of the office. Etc. I understand completely why your boss doesn't want to do the gift card idea. It IS impersonal when you are giving a gift that you want to express value in their work.

Just my not so humble opinion. LOL


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CarolT
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:43:33 PM
I hope you can do the Tiffany bowl - it's lovely!

The tax-exempt issue shouldn't be much of a hold up.


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nathansmommy
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:48:37 PM
I'd love that Tiffany bowl, perfect for dropping jewelry in on my bathroom counter. But I also love CF so that would work for me too.
I love gift baskets too but I tend to say to to myself "ooh this is so nice (special hot cocoa/cookies etc) I'll save it for a special time" that they sit around and then never get eaten/used.
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scoobers
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:50:11 PM
This Tiffany bowl is cute too.

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angievp
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:56:22 PM
Visa gift card.

seasonscraps
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Posted: 12/4/2012 8:56:27 PM
I think an Amex or visa gift card are good choices since they can use them anywhere they want. I think Amex is having a special where the fees are waived if you order the gift cards online.


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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:10:26 PM
I the Tiffany bowl.



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dietcokejunkee
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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:15:55 PM
I walked around the mall and couldn't find any other options. William Sonoma had a great deal on their holiday soaps, lotions and candles, but scents don't appeal to everyone (although the clerk swore up and down ladies fight over this stuff in the store). There's just some tougher personalities in our group. Where I can see 3/4 liking the Tiffany bowl, I can see 1/4 looking at it crossed-eyed (and perhaps not even recognizing the so-called significance of the Tiffany blue box).

I totally agree with you simplekelly! I want to give a gift, not a gift card. Where 3/4 would like a GC to Whole Foods or CF or TJ's, 1/4 will not. I think Visa is the easy way out...like I walked across the street 15 minutes ago and this is all they had at Walgreen's...although I LOVE a gift card, sometimes I think it's the easy way out (yet sure to please?)

I am so glad I only have to do this for one year! Hopefully I'll be gone/retired before my time comes up again in 17 years...

BTW, I spoke to 2 secretaries in our conference. ONe would love a gc anywhere (she thinks it would be funny to call each secretary and ask and have personalized gc's for all) and the other said CF card is first choice, then Tiffany, and than any other gc.

Georgiapea
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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:16:47 PM
I would love a $40.00 gift card to Pier One. I'd much prefer a gift card from a specific store, than a generic Visa gift card. I'd be very disappointed at receiving a Cheesecake Factory gift card.

MINascarScrapper
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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:19:56 PM
Coming from someone who is a senior branch office admin that has gotten a similar Tiffany bowl from my company...go with the gift card! My bowl is still in the pretty little blue box - sitting on the back of a shelf in my closet, where it's been for 12 years!


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myboysnme
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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:28:59 PM
Visa gift cards are not impersonal. It says to me, "I want you to have something you want. I can't give you a Christmas bonus, so this is the next best thing."

My boss gives us each a gift card with a lovely handwritten note telling each of us something she appreciates about us. We have 2 staff who never used the cards she gave to Barnes and Noble or local restaurants. They just weren't interested in those. But when she started giving the Visa gift card, they could use it at lunch, at the coffee shop for a latte, at the convenience store; whereever they happened to go.

Secretaries often don't make a whole lot, so having that little bonus to pick up some things for yourself that you see, or to just be able to treat yourself to lunch or whatever is really a good thing, and not impersonal at all when you consider that gifts are for the recipient.

Adorable Tiffany bowl that I would definately regift. I don't need another item to sit around, and if it comes in a box it would be immediately given to someone on my own list.


My choice is to not take it personally - people have opinions. Particularly people here.-Peabay 12/29/11
I know this is assuming, but I'm really starting to think you are one of those "entitled" peas - Dalayney 4/2/12
When someone elects you Queen of Two Peas, then you can make the rules. - Sue_Pea 12/22/13
"Myboysnme,...I bow down to you, oh queen of the scrapping goodness" - Irish Eyes 3/9/14
"Myboysnme -- ... Whoa. I bow to thee." - Jill S 4/26/14









writermom1
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Posted: 12/4/2012 9:34:15 PM
Visa gift card and a note detailing what specifically is special about her.



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