The Manly Man Gift Guide

March is a busy month for birthdays in our family. It was always that way, but then I went and got tied up with another March birthday, and we made a perfect little princess.

Also born in March.

It’s also a month of highs and lows, because it marks the passing years since my Dad died – also, yes, in March.

Suffice to say there will be lots of smiles, and tears, and laughter, and joy, and a little sadness sprinkled in the mix.

It’s a roller coaster ride, y’all, and who would I be if I didn’t overprepare?

I’ve been doing a lot of journaling and reflection to address the emotional rough patches. And I’ve been doing a LOT of shopping to address all the gosh darn birthdays.

It’s a sacrifice, but someone’s got to do it.

We’re kicking off March with J’s birthday, so I thought it would be fun to put together a little gift guide. I may or may not have purchased one or all of these things, but let’s be honest. I could say that I bought ALL these things for him and still not spoil the surprise, because he’s anti-social media and only sees the blog when I force him.

J’s a pretty dude-ish dude. Likes to hunt, fish, play Madden, watch/play/coach/eat/sleep/breathe football, and BBQ. Doesn’t care much about specific clothes or brands. Doesn’t have any hobbies like brewing craft beer. Doesn’t read anything specific or watch anything specific – other than the Patriots, because football is life, yo – so he’s notoriously difficult to buy for. Any time something pops into my head that I know he’ll like, I add it to a list I keep on my phone for future reference.

I’d like to attribute that to my superior organization skills, but it’s more because my memory is terrible and I know I’ll forget if I don’t.

Here’s some of the things I’ve got on THE LIST:

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This is on the pricier side, but it’s something he’s been wanting for awhile now! We live in coastal south Texas, so learning to fish and enjoy the water is pretty much a rite of passage for most folks around here. J absolutely loves catching and frying fish for us, and I absolutely love eating fried fish and also times where I’m not the one doing all the cooking and cleaning, so we’re a match made in heaven, if you will.

You can’t get much manlier than roasting chunks of raw meat over a fire. Except this is 2021 and we aren’t cavemen anymore, even though SOME OF US ACT LIKE IT.

Yep, consider that with ALL the side eye.

Anyway, J is an avid BBQer. Pitmaster, if you will. He’s actually really great at it and takes a lot of pride in turning out the perfect whatever-piece-of-meat-he’s-decided-to-grill, so this is something he’s been wanting. Even though, to hear him tell it, all it really takes to turn out superb BBQ is just being one with the pit and listening to the whisper of the carcass inside.

South Texas isn’t known for it’s pleasant weather, but we do have a season of time where it’s actually tolerable to be outside.

It’s pretty much the month of March, y’all. That’s it. Smack dab in between frigid cold (because there’s no cold like a humid one) and the fires of hell. Anyway, since J is a BBQer and loves to spend time puttering around in the backyard, this is something we definitely need. Our current fire pit is one of the metal bowl-type doohickies, and it’s not one that I feel comfortable about with a toddler running around. I love that this one looks and feels more solid and that it has a little bit of a ledge to (hopefully) prevent little ones from running directly into a burning hot bowl of FIRE.

What manly man doesn’t drink whiskey, right? This is J’s favorite, but he rarely buys it for himself. We’re not big drinkers (aside from the rare margarita for your girl, here) but this is a great choice for when we are! It’s very smooth and something I don’t mind drinking, myself.

Which is a big jump for a margarita girl.

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For a manly man, J is surprisingly obsessive about cologne. I’m not talking ‘I-like-to-smell-nice’, I’m talking ‘I-own-30-bottles-of-cologne-and-choose-which-ones-to-wear-based-on-how-I-feel’.

Seriously. I own 4 bottles of perfume, and they’re all full. I owned one bottle when I met J, and the other three came from him. He’s into it.

Even though I’m not as obsessed, there’s something absolutely cavewoman-like about a girl’s response to a good manly man scent. This is one of J’s faves and one he’s running low on, so it’s on my list, too.

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Not all manly men wear jewelry, and that’s cool. But the ones who do wear it tend to gravitate towards metal and leather and far away from bling.

Unlike your girl here, whose spirit animal might just be a raccoon. GIMME THE SHINY.

Anyway, James Avery Craftsman is a local Texan brand, and it’s a BIG deal around here. It’s part of our local culture to start a charm bracelet for baby girls early in life and add to it for special events. It’s part of MY culture to overdo things, so EV’s JA bracelet is currently so full of charms, she’s got some that won’t fit. With all that bling going on, J felt a little left out, so I’ve been buying curated pieces from their collection for him, and thankfully, they’re all very manly things like cross necklaces and money clips with deer heads on them, so he’s happy.

Do you have a running ‘gift list’ for the guy in your life, or is that just crazy talk?

Happy Monday, friends!

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