There are those gifts that are so thoughtful and touching—so you—that it completely floors you. Since this is the season of giving, we're looking back on some of the best gifts we've ever received:
Emily: The most meaningful gift I've received (besides my engagement ring, since nothing can top that) was given to me on my wedding day. G was out with my dad having pizza and beer at lunch and before my friends came over, it was just my mom and me at home. I'd finished putting on my dress when she handed me a little box. Inside was a single diamond necklace that she'd made me using a stone that had been my grandmother's. It meant so much knowing that I was wearing something that had been touched by the women that meant the most to me and it's still one of my favorite pieces I own.
Geoffrey: Our honeymoon in Italy was one of the most memorable experiences of my life and it also provided me with one of the best gifts I've ever received. Everywhere we went I took note of how effortlessly stylish Italian men looked, but specifically noticed the prevalence of one piece of essential clothing, a perfectly tailored navy sport coat. It almost seemed everyone was wearing a custom uniform, anchored by this classic piece of clothing. I mentioned to Emily how much I liked the look and wanted to add a navy blazer to my wardrobe when we returned home, but she insisted we find one while traveling. On one of our last days in Florence we walked into a store and found the perfect coat, which she bought as a gift. I still wear it often and it always reminds me of that amazing time.
Alina: For Christmas one year, my boyfriend booked a trip for us to L.A. that February. I dread and hate winter, so to have it to look forward to throughout the longest, darkest, coldest month of the year (hi, January) was so amazing. L.A. is my favorite place (happily I now live here!) so the whole experience was joyous. Definitely goes to show that experiences are more meaningful and memorable than (most) things.
Leslie: When my boyfriend and I graduated from college a little over two years ago, his mom offered to take him on a trip for his graduation present. After carefully deliberating, they decided to take a week-long road trip along the highway that goes around Iceland, known as the "Ring Road." It wasn't until they were deciding on the dates that I realized that it had always been assumed that I would be included. I've always been touched by the way his family wholeheartedly embraced me as one of their own from the start of our relationship, but being included on a trip that was initially meant to be a mother-son excursion felt so incredibly special. My parents chipped in for the plane ticket while his mom took care of the trip itself, which included snorkeling above the fissure where the North American and Eurasian continental plates meet, a glacier tour, and some of the most beautiful places I've ever seen. I never expected to be included, but I'm so glad that I was since I consider it to be one of the best trips I've ever taken and gave me the opportunity to get to know my boyfriend's mom in a context I never would have otherwise.