The incredibly generous pile of presents I received this holiday season didn't happen to include a set of sheets I'd "registered" for, so I found myself thinking about my old sheets, "Well, I'm stuck with these ratty old things another year..." Now, I'm a grown woman with a (minimum wage) job who can (theoretically) buy her own sheets. When it comes to big, hoped-for gifts that you didn't receive, the question is: will you buy them for yourself? Or just do without?
I don't for a second expect my loved ones to take care of my household needs, and I wouldn't trade in any of the thoughtful, amazing gifts I did receive — I'm just wondering how you all handle it. Are the items on your wishlist there to help your family pick out gifts you truly want/need? Or are they near-essentials that you're not able to afford yourself? If you determined that your household could really use non-cracked plates, a working coffee maker, or presentable sheets, do you then go out and buy them after the gift-giving is done? Or do you make do for another year?
Post-holiday seems like the trickiest time to go spending money, but it's also a season of fresh starts, and a time when we might be very aware of our household needs. Hosting guests can help you see exactly what you're missing (for example, we only own 2 wineglasses and had to put in an emergency call to an awesome guest who happily brought 8 more) and what you're embarrassed by. So, how do you handle it?