Dating Advice Expert, April Masini Offers "The Rules" to Good Gift Giving - A Holiday Gift Giving Guide

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Take the guess work (and stress) out of Gift Giving. Dating Advice Expert April Masini offers a comprehensive Gift Giving Guide on, but delivers The Rules to good gift giving here.

Giving a gift can be a daunting proposition if your relationship is new. A gift of a music CD may be interpreted as thoughtful because it's an artist he knows you love, or it's the music that played on your first date (even though you've only had four dates so far). However, it can also be interpreted as a dud gift -- he didn't think about what I really like, it's impersonal, I bet he gives everyone CDs including his doorman, it didn't cost enough, I was hoping for jewelry or something more feminine and meaningful.

See how this can become a dilemma? And yes, the wrong gift can end a relationship - especially when you've been dating a year or more, and she expects a ring, only you come up with the Hammacher Schlemmer massage chair instead. Yes, it's expensive, yes it's thoughtful, yes you even wrote her a card to go with it, but no -- it didn't fit the bill.

When shopping for your girlfriend, remember that age and stage are of the essence. You're likely to be spending a pretty penny keeping your honey happy, so the key is to determine where your relationship is, where you want it to go and, most importantly, what's on your girlfriend's mind. Tricky? Yes. Impossible? No.

First, decide on a price based on the stage of your relationship:

  • $50 and under for less than three months
  • $100 and under for six months and under
  • $250 and under for up to nine months
  • Up to $500 for up to a year

Price is not the only key. Personality plays a major part. Keep gift giving fun and personal - until you're ready to make it serious with the ultimate gift. Even then, it helps to know the woman you're shopping for. If you're still lost, check out my gift tips and ideas (for any occasion) right here on where I help men and women with this kind of dilemma -- especially at this time of year!

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April Masini
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