When my son went to South Africa this summer, I told him there were three things I wanted him to bring back for me as souvenirs. I wanted beads (to make jewelry, or that were already made into jewelry), and textiles (to sew into something-or-other like maybe a vest or a tote). I also mentioned masks, since I have a little crazy mask collection on a wall at home.
I received: the beaded elephant pictured above, and the lizard batik now hanging on my living room wall (pictured below - you can see how large it is next to a standing lamp and china cabinet). He totally forgot I ever mentioned masks.
I love both my gifts, but obviously there is nothing there to wear, or any raw material to make something I can wear. He admitted he didn't have a clue.
The moral of this story is: that despite my attempts to be non-sexist and treat boys and girls the same, and my insistence on equality, the hard truth is that there are still inate diferences. Sigh... Lots of boys (and men) do not "get it" when it comes to stuff like this. And despite our decidedly non-sexist family, and despite living in a house filled with artwork, jewelry, and my assorted crafty projects, I still can't trust either my husband or my son to pick me out jewelry, clothing, or textiles that I will like. Next time I know better than to ask!
But, with all that said, I must repeat: I love my gifts!!! And I'll append that statement with another: I love both my boys (the younger and the older).