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Calling all rebbetzins and anyone else who cares to chime in
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amother




OP


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 2:56 am
I have a close family member undergoing medical treatment at a hospital far away from home for an extended period of time. Other family members are staying with the patient and they've been given a bikkur cholim apartment for the duration of their stay. The Jewish community has been lovely and so helpful to this family, but they do miss their support network at home.

DH and I decided that instead of taking our usual end of the summer road trip with the kids we would all fly out to visit these relatives to give them some company from home and we would tour on the days they're busy in the hospital. Other days we'd be able to hang out together and we would especially be able to spend a Shabbos together. We looked into Airbnb type places and hotels but couldn't find anything close enough to the bikkur cholim apartment to be walkable on Shabbos. Normally we're a lot more flexible on vacation but we couldn't be this time because of the specific circumstances. Then our relatives informed us that they'd mentioned our dilemma to the rabbi of the shul who came up with a brilliant suggestion. His neighbors were going to be away during the time period we were looking to come and he arranged for us to have their apartment while we're here.

I can't imagine what possessed the neighbors to agree to have a family with young children who they've never met come stay in their home, but it is an amazing chessed and we are so grateful. Of course we're doing everything we can to keep the apartment clean and we're making sure the kids are careful with everything. We would really like to leave them a thank you gift in appreciation as well as a note of course. We can either buy something locally or we have enough time to order something via Amazon Prime.

So here's the question: what do we buy a Rabbi and Rebbetzin who live very simply as far as we can tell? We don't really know anything about them other than that they have grown children and grandchildren and they're in Israel visiting some of them. We can't leave anything perishable because they won't be home for days after we leave. We can't leave a nice plant for the same reason. We probably shouldn't leave a fancy box of chocolates because they could melt in the heat and they may not be able to eat it anyway.

We're at a bit off a loss as to how to go about this. We could use ideas. What would you like to come home to if this was you? What is something you would never spend the money on for yourself but would love to get as a gift? What would be an appropriate expression of gratitude but not over the top? TIA!
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amother




Ecru


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 3:00 am
Restaurant vouchers? Make sure they're happy with the hechsher!

Subscription to Mishpacha (if they don't already have one?)

Or you could leave them a card saying "Call this florist when you're back, there's a bouquet/plant waiting for you".

Disclaimer: I'm not a rebbetzin LOL
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amother




Maroon


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 3:18 am
Just chiming in to say that you and your family sound like really special people, and your thoughtfulness is inspiring.

As for gifts, if the home has a lot of Seforim, chances are the Rabbi loves them. A gift certificate at a bookstore would be very appreciated most probably, and I'd also leave some nice chocolate in the fridge/freezer (with a note on the fridge) for the wife.

Either way, a nice letter, especially with a picture of the relative that you were able to spend time with due to their generosity, will probably be the best part of the gift.
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amother




Mint


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 3:59 am
You can always leave a nice serving dish or hand towels.
Hope your relative has a refuah sheleimah!
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Squishy




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 5:35 am
If they have a nice selection in their liquor cabinet, you can get them a special bottle.
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imasinger




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 7:02 am
Great ideas here! I'll add two more thoughts.

- a donation to the local shul in their honor

- A permanent, easy to spot luggage tag with their last name on it like this for their next trip
https://visitag.com/products/elastic-tag

- a havdala candle; those don't take much space, and get used eventually.

This is such a wonderful thread, nothing but chesed, good will, and hakaras hatov all around. Thanks for such an uplifting way to start the day!
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abound




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 7:05 am
set of linen or towels. but probably a nice note explaining how much this meant to your relative is what will be most appreciated. Show them how lending out their home made a huge difference in someones life.
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ra_mom




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 8:04 am
abound wrote:
set of linen or towels. but probably a nice note explaining how much this meant to your relative is what will be most appreciated. Show them how lending out their home made a huge difference in someones life.

Yes a butter soft set of linen for their master bedroom would be lovely
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amother




Firebrick


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 8:22 am
In regard to thinking of gifts, are you "in town" and/or are they "in town" (obviously I know not the same one).

If you live in say Brooklyn and they live in Wisconsin, there may be things that they would love but don't have the same access to.
Might be something to ask-"I so appreciate your opening your home to us and I'm going to bring you a gift anyway. Is there something particular that you might like? Especially something you can't readily get by you? I am coming from Brooklyn and I am bringing you a gift anyway. I can bring you nice cheese (funny that I am now bringing cheese of all things to Wisconsin) and put it in your freezer, or anything you would like but can't easily get. I have time to pick it up and you are doing me a favor because if you tell me, it will make my life easier because then I won't have to guess.

(When we are invited out for Shabbos lunch and I offer to bring something and I am told no, no,no, I always say that I am bringing something anyway, so if they don't tell me what is helpful I am going to bring a candy platter).
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amother




Gray


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 8:54 am
A digital picture frame for pictures of their grandchildren
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amother




Ecru


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 10:22 am
amother [ Gray ] wrote:
A digital picture frame for pictures of their grandchildren


This trumps all my suggestions! It's perfect Smile
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SingALong




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 11:54 am
As the local rabbi they probably host a lot. A pretty set of fingertip towels with a nice washing cup would be nice. I got hat a few times as a gift and it never gets old, since such frequently used towels need to be replaced.
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Raisin




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 12:47 pm
ra_mom wrote:
Yes a butter soft set of linen for their master bedroom would be lovely


a set of master bedroom linen can run from $200 and up. And presuming OP knows what size beds they have. But guest linen, towels, or tablecloths may be welcome.

Personally I would always welcome new tea towels. Handtowels too, but the plain but nice kind. Not embroidered. I'm too busy to take good care of such pretty towels.

Its tough with household goods. I get a lot of such items as gifts, and while occasionally they are welcomed and useful, often I already have 20. And people have personal taste and habits. Eg I don't use plastic covers on my tablecloths so I always appreciate new ones. Your host may have one beloved cloth she inherited from her bubby she always uses with a plastic cover.
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tichellady




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 12:54 pm
An amazon gift certificate so they can choose something they like
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tichellady




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 12:55 pm
ra_mom wrote:
Yes a butter soft set of linen for their master bedroom would be lovely


This seems too personal imo
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tichellady




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 12:56 pm
Could always leave a few nice bottles of wine if you can’t cone up with anything else
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groovy1224




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 1:04 pm
You can do a nice washing cup (if they don't have one already, you can just peek in the kitchen) and some nice netilas yadayim towels. I love having a pretty washing cup that matches my kitchen, and it's also a good gift with the yamim tovim coming up.
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DREAMING




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 6:15 pm
Wine, nice serving platter, vase (with or without a faux flower arrangement).
Any giftware really -accompanied by a nice note
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cinnabon




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 6:24 pm
Op you seem like such a kind and special person.
What about a nice diffuser ?
Or you can get one of the new cookbooks with a gift receipt she can exchange
Certificate to judaica store
I know all of these things I wouldn’t spend on my self but it’s a non personal and appreciated gift .
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teachkids




 
 
 


Post  Fri, Aug 23 2019, 6:36 pm
Digital picture frame, preferably the wifi one, is incredible if that's in your budget.

A havdalah candle or nice shabbos tablecloth are tasteful gifts that will be used at some point because neither lasts forever. If you can get a sense of their taste, serving pieces are nice.
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