I always tell my friends and family to not bother getting me anything for my birthday.
- At 35 I don’t expect presents like I did in my childhood, especially since I have a better paying job than most of the people I know.
Because of this, my favorite gifts are typically the sentimental ones. Getting little trinkets that people make for you with their own hands is endearing and makes me feel loved and important to that person. My sister is a great crafter and always makes at least one of my Christmas presents every year by hand. Although I will typically receive another gift like a comfy sweater or blanket, she is so good at sculpting that she’ll create custom pottery in her kiln or she will make ornaments for my Christmass tree. But this year my sister really surprised me with an expensive gift from out of left field. Now that I have it, I can’t complain that she went out of her way to buy me one. She got me a smart thermostat for my central HVAC system. It has easy scheduling features on it so I can make automated heating and cooling cycles on a 7-day basis. Since it connects to the home’s wifi, it gets updated weather information every minute. I can see what the temperature is like outside and allow the device’s software to make custom energy-efficient heating and cooling cycles based on this information combined with your typical habits and needs. If it realizes that you tend to keep the temperature at 74 degrees during the day and 72 at night, it will offer to do this daily without you needing to program every day of the week manually. The best feature of all is the remote control abilities that let me change the temperature in my house wherever I have phone service or wifi internet.