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Jill Eisnaugle

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Books
· Simon the Snowman

· Beside Still Waters

· Under Amber Skies

· Coastal Whispers


Short Stories
· Finding Ricky's Voice

· Worries Are Like Small Potatoes

· Five Generations of Women, Five Generations of Strength

· The Adventures of Gillyboat and Flea

· A Mug of Dreams

· The Man in Gray

· Parsley Rabbit Learned a Life Lesson

· All I Want for Christmas....

· The Grand Prize

· The Magic Bunny


Articles
· Love Letters for Valentine's Day

· Daddy’s Spirit Keeps Fallen Fathers in Children’s Hearts, Year-Round

· Broadcasting Relationship “Status” (on a shirt)? Is It Funny or Desperate?

· Resurrecting Love at Easter: Is It a Good Idea?

· The X’s & O’s of Love & Romance

· Relationship Obituaries: A New Way to Move Forward?

· Marriage Proposals by Women: Tips and Is Trend Really for Leap Year Only?

· The “After-Valentine” Valentine’s Day

· Valentine’s Day Gifts: Are Secrets and Surprises Taboo?

· Re-gifting (for the Right Reasons)


Poetry
· Life As I Now Know It

· For Susan Bachman – Missing from Pennsylvania

· Soft Light of Solitude

· Budding Relationships

· The Heartfelt Gift

· Her Courage

· Bravest of the Brave

· Our Hearts Are Hurting for Boston

· A Soul of Kindness

· One Day at a Time

         More poetry...
News
· Poem Requested by WBZ-Boston

· Jill Eisnaugle Scores Third Place in Writer's Weekly Contest

· Jill Eisnaugle Wins Two Hallmark Book Contests

· Featured Author on Five More Minutes With

· Card contest win meaningful for daughter, Jill Eisnaugle, on Father's Day

· Jill Eisnaugle's Hallmark Card to be Sold in Stores

· Jill Featured in Galveston County Daily News for Hallmark News

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Books by
Jill Eisnaugle



Simon the Snowman

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Beside Still Waters

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Under Amber Skies

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Coastal Whispers

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Blogs by Jill Eisnaugle

The 10 Worst Valentine's Day Gifts
2/8/2008 2:50:01 PM    [ Flag as Spam or Inappropriate ]

Laura Gilbert, freelance columnist for Maxim, The Knot, and Stuff magazines, shares the ten worst Valentine's Day gifts and offers solutions to these "taboo" gifts.

I disagree with the trashing, regarding these Top 10 items; do you?



1. Ye olde bouquet of red roses and baby’s breath
What’s wrong with it: Yes, you went out and got something nice and romantic. Unfortunately, certain types of flowers are the equivalent of a shrug because they are so predictable and clichéd... and the rose bouquet falls into this category quite neatly. Says Kristin, 40, of Lake Geneva, WI, “I was dating a guy who said he adored all my quirks and my adventurous spirit. Then he turned around and gave me a big bunch of roses with the lacy white stuff for Valentine’s. It was embarrassing, because I’m so not the kind of woman you give that to! It made me feel as if he didn’t really know me or get what I was all about.”

Indeed, Frank Leusner, manager of Delphinium Home, a popular gift shop in New York City, says this of the classic red and white bouquet: “There’s absolutely no thought behind it. It’s a copout because it’s just so expected.” Obviously, a gift that says “I’ve never paid attention to your tastes” or “This would also work well on a tombstone” is not a Valentine’s Day message worth sending. Or, consider the way Brittney Cason, relationship advisor for Elevate magazine in Charlotte, NC, puts it: “A gift should never make a woman wonder if you picked it out at the pharmacy while waiting to get a prescription filled on the way over.”

A simple solution: Ask one of your more florally-inclined friends to name a cool-looking bloom (think calla lily, parrot tulip, Gerbera daisy) and then buy three dozen of those. Or order up a monochromatic bouquet of various blooms in your honey’s favorite color—arrangements look especially striking when the flowers are all one shade.

2. A box of assorted chocolates
What’s wrong with it: “Taking candy from guys you know on Valentine’s Day is the only thing more risky than taking candy from strangers,” says Amy Borkowsky, author of Statements: True Tales of Life, Love, and Credit Card Bills. Let’s face it—not all chocolates are created equal. And while a variety pack of sweets shows that you’re trying to cover the bases, the dark (or milk or white) secret is that some of these morsels will be, well, icky. Do the math: Out of every box of 15 assorted chocolates, a woman will probably have three or so favorites. And there’s all that crazy, frou-frou wrapping as part of the picture—enough satin and ribbon to fashion a child’s princess-bride Halloween costume. So what would you rather get? Three chocolates you want and 21 you don't—along with a lot of excess red metallic cardboard? Or a small box of something you actually like?

A simple solution: This is where a hefty dose of your sweetie’s favorite sweet can come in handy. “Get creative with your packaging or give it as a gift within a gift—who wouldn’t like that?!” says Silvestri. “If you’re dating a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup gal, she’d rather have a bag of those in a nice hand-painted bowl or wrapped in a soft scarf than a lifetime supply of random chocolates in a heart-shaped box.”

3. Jewelry in a ring-sized box
What’s wrong with it: In truth, most women love something glittery. But the biggest jewelry mistake a man can make is anything in a ring-size box — be it earrings, a pendant, or a one-ounce tube of saffron — that’s not, in fact, an engagement ring. Women know there are five key probable proposal days (namely, Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Year’s, Valentine’s, and her birthday), so giving her false hope on one of them is cruel. “When a girl sees that box, she’s either going to freak out because she’s not ready or hope that it is ‘The’ ring and then be disappointed, so it’s lose-lose,” says Cason.

A simple solution: Even if you do get her, say, pink-sapphire earrings — which we’re sure she’ll love — wrap them in a shirt box just so she doesn’t get the wrong idea.

4. Something girlie and decorative like a sachet, a candle holder, a silver wishing stone…
What’s wrong with it: We’re talking about things like rhinestone-studded soap dishes, elaborate aromatherapy dispensing devices, and other stuff people would never buy for themselves. “Anything red and pink and cutesy often winds up being kind of cheap and useless when you look at it on February 15th—the luster is gone,” says Borkowsky. “And any solid red trinket risks saying, ‘I love you—just enough to get you Christmas stuff at 75 percent off.’” Recalls Adrienne, 35, of Cincinnati, “My boyfriend tends to get me things like little heart-shaped pink-velvet pincushions or a wreath of red-satin hearts for Valentine’s Day, because he thinks that’s in keeping with the theme of the day. I wish I could tell him to stop wasting his money this way. I never use that stuff!” So before plunking down your dough, ask yourself, “Do I see this gift bringing my date pleasure and enjoyment... or do I see it winding up in his or her guest room?” The answer ought to make your purchase decision very clear.

A simple solution: “Bath products are a great choice,” says Leusner. “You can find scents and formulas that suit your boyfriend or girlfriend’s personality, and most people really enjoy using them.”

5. A cute stuffed animal bearing a message of love
What’s wrong with it: We’ve never heard anyone admit to expressing themselves best through plush koalas, yet that medium remains popular for many a romantic utterance. “It’s so cheesy,” says Leusner. “When you buy that gift, it could be for anyone—even a child. What’s an adult going to do with a stuffed animal?” We’ll tell you what: Stuffed animals get tucked somewhere out-of-the-way. And when the romance dies, the Stuffed Bear of Love serves no practical purpose, so the recipient feels pathetic keeping it around as a reminder of her ex (that’s you) and donates it to a children’s charity.

A simple solution: Cut out the middlebear, er, middleman, and make a donation in your honey’s name to a charity you think he or she respects. Now that’s a thoughtful gift.

6. Racy lingerie
What’s wrong with it: Look, we all know that when you buy someone underwear, it’s more for you than for her. So don’t use Valentine’s Day as your excuse to present all the secret fantasies you’ve been keeping hidden away for the last 364 days. “A lot of the lingerie you see in stores for Valentine’s Day is opposite of women’s tastes,” warns Silvestri. Something that’s not her style can make her feel uncomfortable (figuratively and literally)—and criticized. The point of V-Day is to make couples feel happy about being together, so the last thing you want to say is “I don’t think you’re sexy enough—put this on.”

A simple solution: Buy a black or lacy version of a type of undie she already wears, if you two are intimate enough to know that kind of thing. At least you know you’re somewhere within her lingerie comfort zone. Or acknowledge the weather outside with something that will actually caress her skin for more hours than you: Long silk underwear.

7. Anything that could be considered a small appliance
What’s wrong with it: A toaster, a humidifier, a yogurt-maker: Trust us, if she needed it so badly, she’d have gotten it already. “Being too practical is a real romance-killer—no one wants anything with an electrical cord for Valentine’s Day,” says Silvestri. (Disclaimer: This rule can be waived if you’re buying an mp3 player or pre-loading a digital camera with shots of yourself holding up signs that say “Will you marry me?”). Here’s how one recipient puts it: “My boyfriend knows I love to cook, especially Asian food. But when I unwrapped a rice cooker last Valentine’s Day,” says Amy, 39, of Portland, ME, “it just felt very room-mate or haus-frau-ish... as if he didn’t see me as this amazing woman who rocks his world.”

A simple solution: Get her something she absolutely does not need but that you know she’d love, whether it’s a helicopter tour of the city or a pair of microfiber massaging slippers. C’mon, it’s a day for romance, which is supposed to be fun—think about her definition of that and shop accordingly.

8. A nice bottle of cologne or perfume
What’s wrong with it: It’s a time-honored gift, and all that fancy packaging might actually make you think you’re buying something your pumpkin will love. But the same spritz that reminds you of a splendid beach holiday in Europe may smell like bath day at the zoo to your beloved. Problem is, “Perfume choice is so specific that it’s a real challenge,” says Leusner. “It’s almost impossible to know what smells good to another person.” And let us not forget that nothing says “You smell weird” better than a bottle of concentrated fragrance. Recalls Danielle, 29, of Oakbrook, IL: “I like really feminine floral perfumes. When my boyfriend gave me this intense, musky stuff one year, I felt like, ‘Do you not know how I like to smell? or are you trying to tell me you wished I smelled like someone else?’ It really did a number on my confidence!”

A simple solution: Buy a soap, aftershave, or other body product in a fragrance that your loved one already has, or go for a high-end unscented body lotion.

9. A tie
What’s wrong with it: “Women actually have a harder time than men shopping at Valentine’s Day, because there are fewer gift options for men than for women,” says Silvestri. “Still, a tie is a big yawn.” It’s amazing how many women complain about generic gifts and then hit the tie aisle for their man. At best, the tie is by a great designer—which the guy likely won’t care about. At worst, it’s a novelty accessory featuring pigs, the Blues Brothers, or some other unwearable shtick. But usually, it’s just “about” the color the guy usually wears, meaning he already owns a dozen of ’em.

A simple solution: Head a little further into the menswear section and pick out a great scarf instead—it’s more casual and therefore more wearable; some fun or extra-soft (cashmere, maybe) socks; or another item that shows a dash more originality.

10. A gift certificate
What’s wrong with it: It’s one thing to not know exactly what your cutie might want, but it’s another to throw in the towel entirely. “Gift cards are too impersonal and disappointing,” says Borkowsky. “There’s no actual gift, yet you know how much someone spent. It’s like saying, ‘Happy Valentine’s Day, honey—I got you a price tag!’” Any gift for a service or store your partner doesn’t already frequent could be read as your attempt to change the person to your pleasing.

A simple solution: Take the money, re-read our suggestions above, and give gift-giving your best shot. Or, to earn bonus points, call your honey’s best pal and ask what to get—that will make a great impression on many levels.



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More Blogs by Jill Eisnaugle
• Last Hours to Vote for My Story - Sunday, December 18, 2011
• Please Vote: I'm in the Top 80 - Wednesday, December 07, 2011
• Thank You & Please Keep Voting - Saturday, December 03, 2011
• Vote for My Story: Help a School Win a Library of Books - Tuesday, November 29, 2011
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• My BIG News: I'm Now a Hallmark Card Creator - Monday, November 02, 2009
• Countdown & Hints to BIG News: The Last Clue - Friday, October 30, 2009
• Countdown & Hints to BIG NEWS: Clues 5, 6, & 7 - Thursday, October 22, 2009
• Countdown & Hints to Big News Clue 4 - Wednesday, October 14, 2009
• Countdown & Hints to Big News Clues 2 & 3 - Friday, October 09, 2009
• Countdown -- and Hints -- to BIG News - Saturday, September 26, 2009
• Press Release for Jill's Chicken Soup Story - Friday, May 15, 2009
• Update About My Life & AD Absence - Saturday, April 04, 2009
• Love Letters and Breakup Statistics - Friday, February 13, 2009
• Celebrities and Valentine's Day - Friday, February 06, 2009
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• Guys: Must-Do Style Tips for a Picture-Perfect Prom - Thursday, March 27, 2008
• Guys: Choosing a Corsage - Thursday, March 27, 2008
• Guys: Picking Out the Perfect Prom Tux - Thursday, March 27, 2008
• A Checklist for Young Men Preparing for Prom - Thursday, March 27, 2008
• Tips for Prom Perfect Makeup - Wednesday, March 26, 2008
• Top Prom Dress Trends for 2008 - Wednesday, March 26, 2008
• Ten Helpful Things to Know about Prom - Tuesday, March 25, 2008
• Prom Dress 101: Know the Basics - Tuesday, March 25, 2008
• 7 Rules for Chaperoning Prom - Monday, March 24, 2008
• Tips for Hosting a Post-Prom Party - Monday, March 24, 2008
• Parents: Prom is Approaching.... Do You Know What Questions to Ask Your Child? - Monday, March 24, 2008
• Weekend Box Office Totals: March 21 - March 23, 2008 - Sunday, March 23, 2008
• Belief in the Resurrection is on the Rise - Sunday, March 23, 2008
• Cute Easter Jokes for Kids - Sunday, March 23, 2008
• Easter Facts & Trivia - Sunday, March 23, 2008
• Facts about Lilies for Easter - Saturday, March 22, 2008
• Children Face Confusion About Jesus & Christianity - Saturday, March 22, 2008
• Easter Eggs: A Worldwide Tradition - Friday, March 21, 2008
• 2008 Marshmallow Peeps Survey - Thursday, March 20, 2008
• The History Behind Marshmallow Peeps - Wednesday, March 19, 2008
• Earliest Easter in Ninety-Five Years to Gather Nice Consumer Spending - Wednesday, March 19, 2008
• Meaning of Easter Flowers - Tuesday, March 18, 2008
• Going Out to Celebrate St. Patrick's Day with Ale (or Lager)? Do You Know the Difference? - Monday, March 17, 2008
• Irish Trivia for Saint Patrick's Day - Monday, March 17, 2008
• Weekend Box Office Totals: March 14 - March 16, 2008 - Sunday, March 16, 2008
• Irish Claddagh Ring's Symbolism - Saturday, March 15, 2008
• Send the Kids Outdoors This Spring Break and Have Some Childlike Fun for Yourself, Too - Friday, March 14, 2008
• Thoughts from the Irish - Thursday, March 13, 2008
• Having a Bad Day? Follow These Instructions for Life - Wednesday, March 12, 2008
• Want to Be Lucky in Love -- Experts Say We Should Heed the Advice of the Irish - Tuesday, March 11, 2008
• A Neat St. Patrick's Day Idea for Kids - Monday, March 10, 2008
• Weekend Box Office Totals: March 7 - March 9, 2008 - Sunday, March 09, 2008
• 20 Strange "Odd" Jobs About Which We May Have Wondered - Saturday, March 08, 2008
• Love (and/or Lost) via the Inbox - Friday, March 07, 2008
• Fourteen E-Mail Subject Lines She’ll Love - Thursday, March 06, 2008
• Oh.... Spring Break: Newsweek Is Helping Students Prepare - Wednesday, March 05, 2008
• So....What Do You Want to Do With Your Life? - Tuesday, March 04, 2008
• Box Office Totals: February 29-March 2, 2008 - Sunday, March 02, 2008
• Spring Cleaning & Spring Savings - Saturday, March 01, 2008
• History and Recipe for the Leap Year Cocktail - Thursday, February 28, 2008
• Leap Year: Stage, Screen and a Ditty - Wednesday, February 27, 2008
• Leap Day: The Long & Short of It - Friday, February 22, 2008
• Is Your Date Really Into You.... or Not? Sure Ways to Tell - Thursday, February 21, 2008
• Ways to Know You’re Ready to Sail Away with Your Sweetheart - Monday, February 18, 2008
• The Dos & Don't of Wine Sampling - Friday, February 15, 2008
• More on the Meaning of Flowers - Wednesday, February 13, 2008
• Bridesmaid Contracts & A Sample of One Bride's Request - Monday, February 11, 2008
•  The 10 Worst Valentine's Day Gifts - Friday, February 08, 2008  
• Need a New Way to Light Up an Old Flame? Many People Would Like an Idea - Thursday, February 07, 2008
• The Secret Messages Hidden in Flower Bouquets - Part Two - Wednesday, February 06, 2008
• Eight Million Americans Admit to Sending Themselves Gifts on Valentine's Day - Tuesday, February 05, 2008
• Planning to Propose This Valentine's Day? Think Princess Cut - Monday, February 04, 2008
• Valentine's Day: What Women REALLY Want - Saturday, February 02, 2008
• The Top Ten Lies That Men Tell Women - Friday, February 01, 2008
• How Kids View Valentine's Day & Love - Thursday, January 31, 2008
• Most Romantic Weather Conditions - Tuesday, January 29, 2008
• Top 10 Family Friendly Valentine Movies - Monday, January 28, 2008
• More Ways to Avoid Valentine's Day Mishaps - Friday, January 25, 2008
• 10 Ways to Avoid Mishaps for Valentine's Day - Sunday, January 20, 2008
• Secret Messages Hidden Within Flower Bouquets? - Wednesday, January 16, 2008
• Help for Men This Valentine's Day - Sunday, January 13, 2008
• Rules for Wedding Gift Giving - Friday, January 11, 2008
• Wedding Trends: Is It Okay to Spend? - Tuesday, January 08, 2008
• Setting Financial Resolutions in 2008 ~ A Growing Trend for the New Year - Wednesday, January 02, 2008
• New Year's Eve Proposals & Singles Statistics - Thursday, December 27, 2007
• TD AMERITRADE Poll Shows the Need for Fiscally-Fit New Year's Resolutions - Wednesday, December 26, 2007
• The Week Before Christmas: A Procrastinator's Nightmare - Wednesday, December 19, 2007
• The History of Christmas Lights - Monday, December 17, 2007
• Christmas Celebrations Around the World - Tuesday, December 11, 2007
• Attention Kids: Santa Announces How He Determines Naughty & Nice - Wednesday, December 05, 2007
• The History of Santa's Elves - Friday, November 30, 2007
• Gift Cards: The Facts & Figures - Wednesday, November 28, 2007
• Men, Women & Our Thanksgiving Roles - Wednesday, November 21, 2007
• Ways to Be on Your Best Behavior for Black Friday - Tuesday, November 20, 2007
• November 19th is National "Have a Bad Day" Day - Sunday, November 18, 2007
• Forty-One Unique Marriage Proposal Ideas - Friday, November 16, 2007
• Random Acts of Kindness - Tuesday, November 13, 2007
• A Good Plan for Surviving Thanksgiving and the Holidays Alone - Friday, November 09, 2007
• Number One Sign You're on a Bad Date - Friday, November 02, 2007
• Halloween Sites for Kids - Wednesday, October 31, 2007
• Carving an Online Pumpkin - Wednesday, October 31, 2007
• The Legend of the Jack O'Lantern - Wednesday, October 31, 2007
• Halloween: A Commercial History - Tuesday, October 30, 2007
• Another Look at Dating in America - Wednesday, October 24, 2007
• Top Ten Ways that Women Drive Men Away and How to Avoid Them - Sunday, October 14, 2007
• College Kids Watch TV, but How Much May Surprise You - Wednesday, October 10, 2007
• In Honor of Deputy Constable Jason Norling - Saturday, October 06, 2007
• Money + Desperation = A Bad Relationship Trend - Friday, October 05, 2007
• Simple, Yet Meaningful Ways You Can Help in the Fight Against Breast Cancer - Thursday, September 27, 2007
• Pet Peeves in Relationships - Tuesday, September 25, 2007
• Labeling in Relationships - Monday, September 24, 2007
• A National Singles Week Survey - Monday, September 17, 2007
• Returning to College? Want a Roomate? Many Students Do. - Tuesday, September 11, 2007
• Grandparent's Day Is International - Friday, September 07, 2007
• Best "Getting Over You" Songs - Tuesday, September 04, 2007
• Work Our Jobs or Work at Home: This Labor Day, We Will Still Work - Sunday, September 02, 2007
• Nagging Has a Bad Affect on a Man's Health, According to a New Study - Thursday, August 30, 2007
• Christmas in August? For Some, It is True - Monday, August 27, 2007
• Random Thoughts (and facts) about Men, Women, and Life - Tuesday, August 21, 2007
• Women Love Clothes but Men Don't Mind - Sunday, August 19, 2007
• Left Handed Authors - Monday, August 13, 2007
• Teachers Tell Researchers They Like Their Jobs - Tuesday, August 07, 2007
• Uniqueness and Cell Phones - Sunday, August 05, 2007
• Back to School Statistics - Tuesday, July 31, 2007
• Kids and Technology - Thursday, July 26, 2007
• Beware of Lipstick When You "Kiss the Chef" - Saturday, July 21, 2007


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