Wantist: Give Amazing Gifts

Give & Tell with Badder Homes & Gardens

Badder Homes & GardensAs we begin to brine our brilliantly basted turkeys, spoon splendid stuffings and gather gorgeous gourds for our centerpieces, how about a break from the fancy finer things? In fact, let’s do the opposite of that.

If you’re easily offended and/or have zero sense of humor, stop reading and get back to that pie crust. But if you love a good laugh and girls who tell it like it is, then I’ve got a treat for you.

Say hello to the unMartha’s of Texas, Krista, Sarah, and Nikki. They’re smart, funny, sarcastic, and they swear a lot. They’re the authors of Badder Homes & Gardens—”the bad girls guide to good housekeeping”—and they’re sharing their gifting wisdom and woes with us today. Nikki even threw in a little tutorial for you.

Krista from Badder Homes & Gardens


What’s the best gift you’ve ever received?

Do vacations count as gifts? Because my Mom takes me, my boyfriend, my brother and his husband on a magical family vacation every year. So far these trips have included making out with gigantic stingrays, judging the marketability of Red Light District prostitutes, standing in windmills whilst debating whether Kinderdijk is pronounced like baby lesbian or baby penis, and watching the World’s Oldest Drag Queen test the limits of her “liquid spine.”

What’s the best food to give as a gift?

When someone’s sad, you should always give them Rolos. But, here’s the kicker, change the wrapper so it says, “Console-os.” They’ll be so distracted thinking about what a loser you are that they’ll totally forget their dog was murdered by insurgents or whatever.

What’s the worst gift you’ve ever received?

My Grandmother had a very strange habit of buying me square-dancing dresses. Which is an interesting choice, as I have the very normal habit of never, ever square-dancing.

Who’s the hardest person in your life to buy gifts for?

My boyfriend is impossible to shop for. Of course, having the honor of living with me is the gift that keeps on giving… him second thoughts about continuing our relationship.

What’s the most inexpensive item you could receive that warms your heart every time?

A bite of your food. I wish I was kidding, but I’m the world’s biggest food mooch. Although the heart-warming tends to go away after I’ve popped a Prilosec.

Krista's Gift Picks on Wantist

What Krista wants to give:

1. From the Desk of… rubber stamps for my brother-in-law who still writes real, live letters just like the dinosaurs, the pilgrims and obsessive fans of Lisa Bonet did in the olden days before being too busy to keep in touch was invented.

2. Mustache Bandages for all the effing hipsters in Dallas. They can use them to stop the bleeding after I repeatedly punch them in the mouth for having stupid mustaches in the first place. Wait, scratch that. Are there any mirrors on Wantist? Maybe they just haven’t seen how stupid they look yet.

3. The Arik Levy Bar of Gold Doorstop for my Mom. But I’m going to tell her it’s real gold that I bought with money from my Super Fancy Smart Person Job. And then she’ll beam with pride and brag about me to her friends. And having an excuse to gloat about the superiority of her child is the real gift here, isn’t it? Yes. Yes, it is.

And something she wants for herself:

4. The Cuisinart Dual Zone Wine Cellar because my boyfriend is a Sommelier and therefore we’re extremely sophisticated drunks. We’d also really like to drain our bathtub gin out of the ol’ clawfoot. It’s eroding both the enamel and our standards.

Sarah from Badder Homes & Gardens


Have you ever done any sneaky research to determine the right gift for someone?

I would tell you about the time I hired a Christmas ninja. But the first rule of Ninja Club is no Pomeranians. And the second rule is don’t talk about Ninja Club. But I did once use a friend’s Etsy favorites list to find exactly what she wanted. Then I bought it for myself and wore it to her holiday party.

Could you share a wrapping secret with us?

Last Christmas, I used metallic pipe cleaners to spell out names in cursive and tied those to the bows on the gifts instead of to/from cards. People loved the packaging so much it was like they didn’t even need the gift. Which was perfect when they found out the boxes were only filled with good intentions – a.k.a. paving sand.

Who’s the hardest person in your life to buy gifts for?

My mom is impossible to shop for because she always has to play the gift martyr. You know, the person who’s like, “I don’t need anything. I have your love and that is the greatest gift of all.” Then you give them a coupon book for free hugs and it turns out they bought you a diamond-encrusted pony. So last year the rest of us teamed up to buy to her a MacBook Pro. And since she’s always used PCs, what we really bought her is a call-your-children-at-all hours-for-“computer”-“advice”-with-impunity card. And that, my friends, is the greatest gift you can ever give your mom (other than vaginoplasty).

Have you ever given a gift in an interesting way?

A few years back, my family got my ex a Roomba®. We wrapped it in a three-sided box and put it under the Christmas tree. When it was his turn to get his gift, we pointed it out, waited for him to bend down to pick it up, then switched it on with the remote causing it to bust out of the box and scare the Bejesus out of him. I’ve always wondered why we didn’t work out.

What’s your most extravagant Want?

I want the Oxford comma back.

Sarah's Gift Picks on Wantist

What Sarah wants to give:

1. Leaf Scoops for my dad. Because I’m pretty sure he’s just going to use them to punch raccoons.

2. The Bikes and Brews canvas tote by International Birds Society for my brother because I feel that all the men in my life should aspire to be fey, indoor lumberjacks like this guy.

3. These bear rug coasters for you. Because I think all of your glassware should be as sexy (and as hairy) as Burt Reynolds.

And something she wants for herself:

4. The multicolor 7-piece ceramic mixing bowl set. I may be a bitch who makes a living squashing egos and telling dick jokes, but I fucking love rainbows.

Nikki from Badder Homes & Gardens


Tell us about a gift-giving ah-ha moment you recall.

When I go to a wedding, I despise buying off the registry. Two reasons: 1. You now know exactly how much I spent. 2. If I can’t force my taste on you then what’s the point of living? I finally figured out that everyone loves steaks so I started sending Omaha Steaks as a gift. It’s the gift of chores (cooking your own meal) and if everything goes according to plans – heartworms.

What’s your favorite reason to celebrate with a gift?

Anytime I see something that someone might like. Why? So I look like the thoughtful fucking angel that I am. Or really just because I love finding the perfect gift. My greatest tragedy would be if people said, “Yeah, she thinks she’s really good, but look at this thing – it’s a hunk of shit.”

Nikki's Gift Wrap Tutorial

Could you share a wrapping secret with us?

1. I use pinking shears to hand cut tissue paper crinkles.

2. Making a bow is easier than you think. It’s really just a series of loops.

3. I hand-stamp gift tags because it’s time consuming and keeps me from doing actual productive things. It’s, like, so weird that I’m single.

Who’s the hardest person in your life to buy gifts for?

My older sister. One year I gave up and got her a shirt that said Another Super Star, but the words were staggered so it secretly spelled ASS. Nowadays I just take her to dinner or buy her fancy foodstuffs. She thinks she’s a foodie and I don’t mind feeding that delusion.

What’s your most extravagant Want?

This headdress I found one million years ago that’s massive and magenta. I swear it used to be $250, but now it’s $650. I still think it’s worth every borderline gawdy penny though.

Nikki's Gift Picks on Wantist

What Nikki wants to give:

1. This ice cream club membership for a friend I secretly want to sabotage. “Pork up your nemesis with this deliciously high-calorie Jeni’s Ice Cream.”

2. This brownie pan for my Mom. She’s a ridiculous cook and loves brownies. She also just texted me and called my dad a moron, but she kind of has a point…

3. This towel for my little sister. In college she killed a mosquito in her apartment and it left the tiniest spot of blood. She then called to inform me that she probably had AIDS. No one would appreciate not putting your face parts where your butt parts just were quite like her.

And something she wants for herself:

4. I’d buy myself this greenhouse so I could enjoy it for a few months and then kill it—completely oblivious to the fact that you don’t water terrariums like you do rice fields.

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