Pick Me!

A weblog by Laura Moncur


The Gift I Tried To Give To My Grandma

Filed under: Barbies and other favorite toys,Personal History — Laura Moncur @ 10:00 am

When I was in third grade, Academy Park had a gift fair. It was right before Christmas and we were allowed to bring money to buy gifts for our family members. I don’t know if schools still do that, but it’s a really good thing, in my opinion, because as a kid I wasn’t allowed to shop that often, so buying a present for someone was difficult.

We were Jehovah’s Witness, so I wasn’t allowed to celebrate Christmas, but that didn’t stop me from buying presents for everyone at that fair. I bought this for my grandma.

The gift I tried to give to my grandma

It stands only two inches high and it’s a pencil sharpener. That little drawer opens up to empty out the pencil shavings. My grandma was an antiques dealer, so I had seen the coffee grinders that she owned and loved. I thought that she would like this because it looked like an antique.

Because we didn’t celebrate Christmas, I gave her the pencil sharpening coffee grinder the next day. She took one look at it and said that she didn’t like it. She gave it back to me. I tried to explain to her that it looked like an antique and she liked antiques, but she was certain that I bought it because I wanted it myself, so she insisted that I take it back.

I didn’t want it myself. I really thought she would like it.

I found it last week with all of my Barbies. It kind of lived in all of my Barbie houses that I created over the years until it was finally shoved with all the clothes and furniture in the doll box. It kind of served as a doll-sized representation of my grandmother’s antiques. Seeing it again after so many years made me incredibly sad at the rejected gift. I put it in the china cabinet with her crystal and Depression glass.

On another note, DUCKZBUNNY Blog has the collection of pencil sharpeners that this came from. They are photographed beautifully.

And you can buy the ENTIRE set here:

Die Cast Pencil Sharpeners Antique



  1. A fitting place for a “rejected gift”! Not all reminders are of happy events and I think we need those remembrances as well, reinforcing the notion that we’re all human, even grandmothers.

    Comment by Roland Smith — 2/4/2010 @ 10:38 am

  2. This brought tears to my eyes-I’m sorry. I can only imagine how you must have felt at such a tender age. Your intentions were loving and thoughtful=unfortunately Grama was insensitive. Oh well, Barbie loved it and kept it and yes a gentle reminder Grama is only human-and you can be ok with that as an adult now. Thanks for sharing such a touching story.

    Comment by discodiva79 — 11/2/2011 @ 9:03 pm

  3. My sister had that coffee grinder…thought it was from the Holly Hobbie collection.

    Comment by Marigen — 3/21/2012 @ 12:05 pm

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