Tuesday, December 18, 2012

The gravy boat

Last Christmas my husband bought me a boat. Had it been of the sea worthy variety I would have been thrilled (if a little surprised, given our proximity to the sea), but the boat in question was not for sailing. It was for transportation… the transportation of gravy… It was a gravy boat.

Yes. My husband bought me a gravy boat for Christmas.

I do not wish to sound ungrateful. After all, I had expressed a desire for such an item, being fond of a roast dinner and weary of serving my gravy in an old mug.

I’m sure a gravy boat is a perfectly fine gift… for an elderly aunt, or even one of those ‘tricky to buy for people’…

What do you buy for the person who has everything? Why a gravy boat of course!

The opening of the gravy boat was followed by an awkward silence.

“Don’t you like it?” my husband asked, somewhat indignantly

I regarded the gravy boat. It was made from bone china, plain white and came with a matching plate. If I wished to complement the gravy boat I would say it was simple and elegant. However, at the end of the day, it was a gravy boat. 


 “Of course I like it! It’s lovely!” I replied, summoning some enthusiasm for the ill conceived gift.

“What’s wrong?” he asked, sensing my poorly concealed disappointment.

“It’s not the gravy boat” I replied…

“It’s what the gravy boat represents!”

Back in the days before we had children, my husband and I enjoyed a rather extravagant lifestyle. We dined at fine restaurants, we drank expensive wine, we travelled often. We didn’t have the financial worries that came with having children.

On our first Christmas together my husband bought me a gorgeous Tiffany necklace and a beautiful silver watch. I bought him a guidebook for Singapore, along with return tickets and a busy itinerary. We had the time and the funds to choose meaningful gifts for one another. 


I looked down at the gravy boat and pined for the old days, before we were married, before we had children. But the days of extravagance have long gone.

As we have navigated sleep deprivation and the challenge of raising children our marriage has seen some choppy water. But, we held on and sailed through, because that’s what relationships are all about…. I’m sure there will be ups and downs to come; after all, we’re sailing into unknown territory…

And as we all know, the best way to navigate uncharted waters is in a boat… I just didn’t know it would be a gravy boat.

This year I’ve asked for socks. 

Linking up with Essentially Jess for the last IBOT of the year! 
Wishing all my fellow IBOT'ers a wonderful Christmas. 

43 comments:

  1. You should buy HIM socks!

    We are prob the opposite, to begin with, we couldn't afford to buy each other gifts. Now we can, but still in the mindset that we just don't. Which is my current dilemma.. what if he is buying me something and I don't have anything for him!

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    1. I must admit I've had trouble buying something meaningful for him this year! He might get socks too! xx

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  2. We got a gravy boat as a wedding gift and Dadabulous is thrilled with it. He specifically requested it. Its all a ruse to get me to make gravy. It hasn't worked. Don't worry - you'll get your lifestyle mojo back - eventually.

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    1. A gravy boat is a great wedding present. It's the type of thing that you'll use in old age and remember your wedding xx

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  3. I love the significance of this gravy boat and completely relate. Last year I got an egg cup. A single egg cup! I'm not kidding (though my husband was, obviously)

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  4. LOL this post bought back the memory of the year my Husband got me a can opener for my birthday.....
    Men!!! they are good for a laugh SOMETIMES
    Merry Christmas sweetie, and may hubby buy you an arm load of socks xx

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  5. A gravy boat? Ouch.... I guess they say it is the thought that counts. We are not at that stage yet, I am lucky hubby listens throughout the year and takes notes about what I want! :). However I am not sure how a he will wrap another baby, as that is on the top of my list this year! :)

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    1. Are you serious?! you want another one? go on! Babies are great!

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  6. I would have been a little disappointed but it's a good gravy boat. He gets extra ticks for the plate too. Rachel xx

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  7. Ha! Great post!!
    Don't worry, we've bought each other nothing for Christmas.
    We've only bought gifts for the kids.
    No awkward silences here... ;)

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    1. We said that one year and then both bought each other something anyway. Maybe that's the way forward xx

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  8. Boatman threatened to buy me a new Iron this year, and whilst I enjoy ironing, some presents are not Christmas gifts. Had he one day just come home randomly with a gravy boat, I'm sure you would have been thrilld :)

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  9. Haha. That made me giggle.
    I don't think we even own a gravy boat (Mr. Mandie - not that you would be reading this, but if you are, it's NOT an invitation to buy me one for Christmas). It is a lovely one, but yes. It is a gravy boat!

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  10. It's really hard to not pine for your pre-children lifestyle. And I at first thought "But it's a lovely gravy boat!" then read on...and you're right. It wasn't about the gravy boat. That gravy boat represents a lot more than just roast dinner. :( Maybe one day it will be a real boat?

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  11. I hope you get good use out of those socks :)
    I love that he listened to you about your wish for a gravy boat and it is a thoughtful present if it had of been accompanied by something else!!!
    I don't think he will make the same mistake again though....
    Becc via #ibot

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    1. In his defence he did also get me a beautiful note book that I've used almost every day for my blog ideas :-)

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  12. Ha ha. My husband wouldn't know what a gravy boat is - phew! This year, I have been sneaky and told him we don't need to buy gifts for each other, which I know he will stick to. I have then gone and bought gifts for hiM and myself and will wrap them and put them under the tree on the morning, that way, I get what I want :)

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    1. That is a brilliant idea!! I'm going to have to remember that next year!

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  13. Love it! I don't even bother telling my husband what I want anymore, I just go and buy it and then tell him what he got me. Or I just get myself stuff throughout the year and don't worry about it when it comes to Christmas. I must admit though this year I've asked for a sleep-in and a day free of nappy-changing! Lol!

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    1. Oh a sleep in! Yes!! I think that's on the wish list of every parent I know!

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  14. Sorry I shouldn't laugh but that present brought back memories of my first ever Christmas present from my then boytoy and now husband It was an alarm clock, not even an all singing all dancing one just a plain black alarm clock. Which I had to open and pretend to be happy about in front of his parents. Thankfully they have got better since then but the alarm clock will always stick in my mind. Bless your husband, I bet he thought it was a nice useful present as well. When will they learn eh!!
    Popped over from IBOT x
    Merry Christmas.

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    1. Oh bless you! It must have been hard having an audience. Fortunately when I was given the gravy boat it was just us and the kids xx

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  15. Hahaha. Hilarious. I was actually given socks for my birthday last year. But it gets worse, they were socks that he DIDN'T pay for, and they were far too big for me!
    I remember the days when our gifts were thoughtful and romantic rather than practical and affordable. Having said that, I was pretty stoked when he bought me a dust-buster! xx

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    1. Did he get you the dust buster for Christmas? I'd love one of those bad boys but would not be impressed to find it under the tree on Christmas day!

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  16. Hubby did the same thing for my birthday one year but swap gravy boat for lamp. He thought he was being thoughtful because I wanted a lamp... these days I buy my own gift and give it to him wrapped and ready to go and I've bought myself some awesome presents ;)

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  17. LOL! I hope you've put the gravy boat to good use this past year! :)
    In all seriousness, I do know what you mean. I used to be showered with clothes, jewellery and holidays. This year I'm getting a camera tripod and he's getting his wish list from Bunnings. See, not only have we gone practical and on budget but romance and surprise has gone out the window too!

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  18. Haha! Poor you! I don't mind receiving cooking appliances as gifts, but a gravy boat? That's pushing the friendship.

    Last year, hubby bought me a teapot, cups and a variety of teas from T2. The perfect gift!

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  19. we have long stopped buying each other presents, instead we agree on something we both want and buy that
    last year - a full set for 4 of matching luggage, the year before a new TV, there has been a rather luxurious couch, and even a backyard makeover
    we spend all year deciding what we are going to "get" for christmas
    this way - neither one of us is disappointed
    having said that, i think the gravy boat is quite symbolic, somthing there to love
    xx

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  20. Love this post! Feel like I could have written it (although probably not so eloquently). I live in hope for a return to those spontaneous days - you can send preppies to boarding school - right?

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  21. One year hubby bought me a plastic gun thingy that swatted mosquitos. I kid you not! This year we can't even think of anything that either of us want! I guess we've never given each other particularly expensive or memorable presents. I don't think I would be too happy with a gravy boat thought!

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  22. I remember the old, financially flexible days. This year my daughter is getting a trampoline (and countless other gifts) and I'll get a CD. In my last year in London I got a mountain bike..... nuff said.

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  23. I won't lie, I would have thumped him over the head with the gravy boat! x

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  24. I think I would have cried. After considerable nagging (ie years) my husband bought me diamond earrings. He must have known that that birthday of mine would have been our last together if he didn't!!! I know that sounds awful, but I felt it was a way of acknowledging all that I had given up and all my hard work in the past few years. And since then, I haven't asked for a single present for Christmas, birthday or mothers day! I am completely happy and have no need for anything else :) x

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  25. Oh wow. If that were me, and I'm not so nice, I'd be using that bad boy to serve BBQ sauce, over and over, just so the expectation of having gravy made, and overseas trips lost, would hit its mark. Then he might make the gravy on Christmas day? Or at least pop out a little bit of jewellery. Seriously. It never fails. Why don't they learn???

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  26. You know what, he thought he was doing the right thing and had the best intentions, albeit a little off. I have a gravy boat and every mum should own one!!
    In saying that I have a husband who is really useless at presents etc and is more of a hands-on dad, and to me that is more important that gifts. Emily x

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  27. I remember one Valentines Day when we were skint, and agreed not to spend more than $5 on each other. I bought him a little chocolate, and he bought me nothing and proudly pointed out that he came in under $5, and didn't understand at all when I got upset. Missed the whole fricken point!

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  28. How disappointed you must have felt! Even a coffee mug is better than a gravy boat... No matter how stylish

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