What do you give someone who is turning one hundred?

By Jess
@JJ4Ever (4704)
United States
April 17, 2012 6:58pm CST
My cousin had an interesting post yesterday! It said, "My husband's grandmother turns 100 years old on April 29. Any ideas for a birthday gift to give to someone turning 100?" I have never personally known anyone who was a hundred (or more) years old. So let me ask myLot - what would you give this person for their birthday?
5 people like this
24 responses
• United States
18 Apr 12
Something personal, not from a store. If you Know they Love your dessert, bake it. If you Know they loved their sister , give them a newly framed picture of her. Something Like that.
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
It's much easier and quicker to purchase a gift from the store, but I think someone who is turning one hundred deserves much more than that, just like you suggested. A homemade cake is a fantastic idea. Growing up, my mom was always so worried about putting on a birthday party for each of us six kids that she didn't start baking cakes (they were always store-bought) until we were grown. I always look forward to homemade dessert; it is way better than store-bought! Other than those ice cream cakes you can get at the store, if I'm in charge of the cake for a party, I bake it myself! Plus, it's a lot of fun to decorate. It's so easy to get caught up in the party planning that people forget what the guest of honor wants. I'm glad you suggested figuring out what she would like. My cousin could also ask her grandmother what she wanted for her one hundredth birthday so that she could remember her special day. I'm not sure if my cousin will post an update as to what they did, but I'd love to find out what happens next weekend! Thanks for your response, Sarah.
1 person likes this
• United States
19 Apr 12
That's wild. In my family it was the opposite. My mom would make cake from the cake mix for my birthday until I reached my 20's. I am the baker in the family but I can't make my own cake so I decided to have store bought cakes. that way Mom didn't have to worry about the cake coming out ok. I love , love a yellow cake with white buttercream frosting from the store! I'm glad I could help. Please let me know how the party turns out.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
22 Apr 12
My cousin's grandma's actual birthday is on April 29, so I will hopefully hear something soon after that. I'm glad your mom made you cakes for your birthday each year. That is very special. If I had a cake made, I'd love marble, confetti, or cherry cake. The hubby's favorite is chocolate with chocolate frosting. White or yellow cake is great, too, if you have homemade frosting. Yum, you have excellent taste! I always like frosting that complements the cake. For instance, if the frosting is really rich, the cake should be not too sweet, but a neutral flavor. If the cake is rich, the frosting should be less sugary. I think that makes a perfect balance. I don't care for the store bought kinds as much because it seems like both the cake and frosting are too sugary and sweet that I can only eat one or the other. They're usually too rich to have both! My father-in-law loves carrot cake, and I think that is pretty good with the cream cheese frosting. All this talk of cake...I have tiramisu in the fridge from a party last night that is calling my name lol!
1 person likes this
• United States
18 Apr 12
most people who are turning 100 are just happy that they lived to be that old and want the time to be spent with family and friends. BUT something special is a must lol 1st off its already been mentioned but a HUGE party would be great with all the people that she is closest to. as for a present a friend of mine found the most shiny pennies she could find (100 of them to be exact) she glued them in a frame and decorated it herself and it looked really nice and she even wrote something special about the 2 of them inside the frame. at the bottome of the frame she had 1 more shiny penny and under it it said something to fact about 1 to grow on which meant she would be there another year. this made the birthday girl really happy. i think buying a HUGE boquet of roses (yes they are expensive but at this age it is totally worth it) to display at the party. another idea is getting together photos of everything from when she was young and as she aged and making it into a slideshow with music and al kinds of things. that is something that even after she is gone it will be cherished forever. you only get to be 100 once and it should be a big deal to everyone since not very many people make it to that age. if you have kids i think it would be nice to have the kids also make something even if it isnt but a picture they colored just for them it would be a nice gesture and i know would make anyine happy :) good luck with the ideas and i hope this helped some :)
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
Hey there, thanks for the response! These are excellent ideas!! I'm glad you went into detail too. (It's like you've done this before a time or two lol! ) What I like best about your idea is that it involves time, creativity, and overall makes the party a big deal, which it should be for the birthday girl! You definitely covered all the bases, and I know I would be spoiled to be the guest of honor at this party if it were for me! Are you a party planner, by chance? lol I think the party would make many great memories, and handmade gifts are a nice touch for Grandma to always remember her children, grandchildren, etc., that they made these things just for her. Although I was referring to my cousin's grandma for this discussion, my grandma is 83, so I have a few years to start planning a big birthday bash for her. I'm going to revisit this discussion when I do because you made the planning a lot easier. Thanks again!!
• Philippines
18 Apr 12
This is a chance of a lifetime it is an extraordinary gift from above to have reached that age definitely ,everyone wishes to be on that age somehow if I am not mistaken,but perhaps if I were to be asked what gift will I be giving I am clueless to that since it is an exceptional case, if given a chance to give something it must be precious and worth keeping after all anyway.....
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
You're right - this time in a person's life is precious. I think it is an honor to reach a hundred years old. I also think of the people this lady has outlived. That part would be sad (especially if she had no family left), but she should be honored on her special day regardless. I'm with you - I would be very overwhelmed about putting on this party because the expectations might be higher than if it were a thirtieth party or something like that. No birthday is unimportant, but reaching triple digits would be quite an accomplishment!
@ricebird (34)
• Philippines
18 Apr 12
how about an ipod with a playlist of songs from different decades? or maybe download era films that she can watch again?
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
That's a really unique idea! I think an iPod would be great because it's so easy to use. I don't think you would have to worry about an elderly person having to figure out how to work the music because it's very simple to learn. What a cool idea with the music from the different decades! That reminds me of a video I saw online the other day...there was an elderly man who couldn't speak very well. He really made no vocal sounds at all. As he was getting older, he'd started keeping to himself and discontinued communicating. It was sad, but during the video they gave him headphones and music to listen to. He started humming and singing, and as soon as the pulled the music away (right afterwards) he started talking again! He could only answer yes or no questions the best, but he was talking, and it was amazing. It's a wonder what music can do, and if it can do that I'm sure it can bring back great memories of the different decades. I like the era films idea too. As long as my cousin's grandmother doesn't have sight problems, she'd love them! Or even if she can't see well, she can listen to the films. Thanks for your response!
@chiyosan (29388)
• Philippines
18 Apr 12
oh yeah.. i do not know anyone that age.. my grandparents were only at their 70s tops and they were the oldest i know. :D
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
My husband's grandparents had a friend who was 93 years old, and I had the pleasure of meeting him a couple years ago. I think he's the oldest person I've ever met. My husband's grandparents always joked with him about what they were going to do when he turned 100, but he passed away at 93, so they never got to plan that party for him. He was a sweet man, but not in great health. My grandparents are in their 70s and 80s. It makes me wonder what it's like to live that long...
• China
18 Apr 12
you may prepare a brithday cake with 100 strawberry/cherry on it, and a 100 flowers bouquet as well.
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
The cake sounds delicious! I love cherries and strawberries lol. I think my cousin's grandmother would really appreciate great dessert for her birthday. A one-hundred flower bouquet is a very neat idea. Depending on the size of the flowers, that would probably be a huge bouquet, which would make a statement. Fantastic ideas!
@TheIzers (680)
18 Apr 12
I think a hundred years old coin would be interesting or you can make your own one hundred coin decoration from some pennies and frame it. if she is into jewelry you can give her locket that engraved 100 years young.
2 people like this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
18 Apr 12
I love the coin idea because it is something that literally would have been around as long as she has been alive! Jewelry is always nice for a woman, no matter what age. What about a necklace with the hundred year coin piece in it? She can wear it, and it would represent her one hundredth year. I really like when people say they are so many "years young" when asked their age. Those are the people with a great sense of humor. Thanks for suggesting that about the engraving on the locket. If it were my grandmother turning one hundred, I'd do that for her! Thanks for your response, my friend.
@viakri (123)
• United States
9 May 12
When I worked at an assisted living home and one of the residents turned 100, everyone made sure her day was extra special! That night we made a path of 100 balloons from her room to her table in the dining room where she was greeted with flowers, a tiara, and her favorite breakfast. Her family was there to make her day extra special! After breakfast, they took her to the beauty salon to get her hair, nails, and makeup done and then took her out to some of her favorite places! When people get that age, it is not the material gifts that mean anything to them, it is people spending time with them and making them feel loved and important!
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
16 May 12
That is such a neat idea! I love how the residents actually participated in the celebration. I bet that was super special for this lady. I think the best part was that her family was there. That'd be the worst for me to be that age and have outlived all of my family. Even if they were all younger than me at that point in my life, I'd definitely still want to have family around for such a special occasion. I think the visit to the salon was a very nice touch! She must've felt like an absolutely princess that day. Great ideas for such a special lady!
@viakri (123)
• United States
18 May 12
Unfortunately, it was not always so nice for some residents. We would have the children of residents drop them off and run out the door like a parent dropping a toddler off at daycare. Some residents only had visitors once or twice a year. I think that's terrible. I could never just dump my parents in a home and just not look back. Not come to see them or anything. It used to make me so angry!
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
8 Jul 12
That's so sad! That makes me want to cry. If those were my parents in the home, I'd want to see them at least once a week like we do now. If I refused to go see them (assuming they were in a home close by), it'd almost be like a part of my life was missing! I find it the most difficult to fathom because my parents have been such a huge part of my life that to put them in a home and want nothing to do with them after all that time would be the worst thing. I think the kids should care for their parents when they're older as it's the least they can do when their parents spent so many years caring for and raising them! I'm not a parent yet, of course, but if I invest my life into my children someday only for them to throw me in a home when I get older and want nothing to do with me, it would kill me. I'd hope to raise my kids better than that!
@ellie333 (21029)
18 Apr 12
Hi JJ4ever, I would personally gather a 100 very small gifts and individually wrap them. these do not have to be expensive gifts but for example if they enjoy mint sweets wrap a hundred of them individually. It will be fun opening them and they will aprreciate as at 100 they will have so many ornaments etc and not really need too much. Another idea is to do a collage of photos from friends and relatives and frame especially for the,. Huggles. Ellie :D
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
Hi Ellie! I like that idea a lot. It would be fun to get one hundred gifts together and wrap them individually, then for grandma to unwrap them one at a time. Those little trinkets could perhaps represent different things for her and would bring her many great memories. The photo idea is great too. What about a family tree with photos even? I love when people get creative and make things for family members. Something that someone invests time and thought into always makes a nice gift.
1 person likes this
@ellie333 (21029)
19 Apr 12
Glad you liked the ideas, the family tree with photos sounds a great one to do too. :)
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
22 Apr 12
Well, thank you. I'm glad you like that idea as well! A family tree sometimes sounds like a school project, but I think it's something that could be enjoyed by all if done in a thoughtful way, like with the photos and everything. I think the party will be taking place next weekend (since my cousin's grandma's birthday is April 29). If I get any feedback from my cousin, I'll be sure to post!
@jureathome (5363)
• Philippines
19 Apr 12
Throw a big party and invite all their family and friends (who are still alive). For old people, it means so much for them to be with the people they love and its a way for them to celebrate life. Wow, 100 years old.. that's a huge milestone.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
It is a huge milestone, isn't it? Reaching one hundred isn't a main goal of mine (lol), but if I make it that long I'd sure be proud of it! I think having the big party and inviting all of her family would be the best gift a grandma could receive. It's those memories that are the most important when you're that age!
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
22 Apr 12
A huge party would definitely be in order, as long as it wasn't a surprise! I don't think a surprise party for someone of that age would end well.
@bounce58 (17527)
• Canada
27 Apr 12
Maybe a little bit of time. I'm sure that she would still have a lot of stories to tell. Maybe some time and a good ear would be a welcome gift. To let her know that people are still there/here to listen to her. Of course, if there was some tea and some snack to go along with the story-telling it would be more enjoyable.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
29 Apr 12
Excellent idea! My grandparents always enjoyed having my siblings and me over to talk to us. I didn't appreciate it as much then as I do now, but an ear to listen for them is probably better than anything we could give them. I like the idea for snacks, too, because I'm always hungry lol! All of my elderly acquaintances, family, and friends have always enjoyed when I listen to their stories, and many of those I remember. These stories had to do with old telephones, cow tipping, and tipping over of outhouses lol!
@SViswan (12095)
• India
27 Apr 12
My husband's grandmother and my grandmother are 90+. The custom in our community is to gift a traditional piece of cloth every year and that is what we do. Not sure what we will do if they are alive and celebrating their birthdays at 100.The last few years both grandmas have asked us not to gift the traditional piece of cloth since they have lots and no place to use them. Sometimes, we gift them gold ornaments. As a suggestion, try to find out what this grandmother likes and gift that.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
29 Apr 12
I like the idea of tradition. That makes gift giving easier. The recipient and birthday person will know what to expect as well. Your suggestion is best, though, because knowing what the guest of honor would like will guarantee the perfect gift!
@Cutie18f (9564)
• Philippines
18 Apr 12
Maybe some vitamins or milk fit for her age will make her happy. I'd been to one birthday party of someone who turned 100 and most of the gifts were house clothes. She did not show any expression whether she was happy or not.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
That would be hard not to know if the person liked their gift or not. I think clothes would be boring for someone turning that age, but then again, if it's something she needed, then that's a good gift. Vitamins and healthy things would be the perfect gift for my grandma because she's constantly having to take them and watch what she eats. (She has a lot of allergies.) Anything that would save her a trip to the health food store would be worth it! Thanks for your response!
• United States
18 Apr 12
Well, a card that says "I can't believe you made it to 100" should work just find, and a something that they might like.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
That card would be telling the truth, too, because no one really expects to make it to one hundred years old, do they? That's not one of my main goals, but if I make it that long then so be it!
• United States
18 Apr 12
wow that's a tough one they seen it all, how about something that says how successful they've been over the years and family portraits.....
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
Neat idea! If her family could share in her successes, I think that would mean the world to her. That's a really unique idea. If I were her, I know I'd love something like that. If my grandchildren made something like that for me, that would mean they did their research and learned a lot about grandma. Putting time into a special gift like that means so much, and handmade gifts are really great. Thanks for your suggestions!
@laydee (12815)
• Philippines
18 Apr 12
Wow! That's just great. But can she even still remember things or move? Anyhow, I don't think gifts are important that age in life. They have accomplished so much and they're living 'bonuses' in life. Therefore, I think they don't expect gifts anymore. Just a good hug and attention would do. I'd like to talk to someone reaching that age, I think it's awesome to have seen the world, however, it would be sad as well seeing that the ones we love go ahead of us. If I should give something, perhaps I would give her a nice jewelry, a brooch perhaps. Past generations love these stuff. A good quality Barong Tagalog for women would also be nice, I forgot the name, but with the same fabric. Have a great MyLot experience ahead!
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
I'm not sure what condition this lady is in as it's my cousin's husband's grandmother (my cousin's grandmother-in-law), and I have never met her lol. I think she's still in good condition the way it sounded on Facebook, though. I agree with you - physical gifts aren't as memorable, especially at her age. It's more the memories themselves that are enjoyable, which is why a photo album or scrapbook might be nice. If I were a hundred and outlived a lot of my family, it would make me sad, but I'd probably love seeing my children and grandchildren if I were her. That would be special making more wonderful memories with what family is left. Putting myself in her shoes, that would be so tough to outlive my family...
@GardenGerty (92425)
• Marion, Kansas
18 Apr 12
Anything they wanted. Actually, I would include some of my time in whatever gift. If they are a music lover I would go to a concert with them. If they like a particular type of meal, I would prepare it myself, or go to a restaurant that serves it with them. A gift includes giving of yourself.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
"A gift includes giving of yourself." Isn't that the truth? It's so easy to get caught up in the hustle and bustle of things, especially at Christmas, when buying gifts for lots of people. If we could just take the time to think about what we would really like to get for someone, that would be more special to them. Likewise, in this situation, I think you're exactly right. My cousin's grandmother-in-law would probably love a handmade card or a photo album of pictures from her past. A handmade present is really special. I wish I had more time (and creativity!) to do things like that for my family. It also saves money a lot of times making something you would otherwise buy at the store for double to triple the cost. Thanks for the suggestions. I'm not sure if my cousin will post on Facebook what they end up doing for the upcoming birthday, but that would be nice to know!
@djbtol (5501)
• United States
18 Apr 12
Give her a nice, crisp $100 bill, or give her 100 $1 bills. She will truly love this kind of gift.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
I think one hundred of something would be neat if there was some significance to it. Just out of curiosity, do you think she would rather see all of her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren for her birthday or receive a gift from each of them instead? (It probably depends a lot on how the family gets along too lol.) A $100 bill can be used to buy some nice things for her as well.
@lakantar (1575)
• Greece
18 Apr 12
Maybe you can make her a photo-album with photos of her and people she loves, something like a flash-back photo-album.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
That would be a neat gift because it would help her to remember all the things she's done over the past one hundred years! I love looking at photos because it jogs the memories. I could spend hours looking through photos if I had the time. Scrapbooks are a lot of fun, too, if there's time to make one. Thanks!
18 Apr 12
If it is just a present idea you are looking for, I would not give them anything to hang onto. Maybe a amazing night out to a delish restaurant, or some kind of special treat. Maybe an experience! A trip or cruise. Something to aid them in enjoying life right now in the present.
1 person likes this
@JJ4Ever (4704)
• United States
19 Apr 12
That's a really great idea. I like that your gift would involve creating a memory, and that's something we can keep forever. I think memories are more important than physical gifts, too, in many cases. As I commented above, I loved listening to my grandparents' stories, and they had so much wisdom to share. I think my cousin's grandmother-in-law who I referred to in this discussion would love more than anything to have her children, grandchildren, and great grandchildren with her for her birthday so she could enjoy seeing them all at once. Thanks for your response!