Well, my family had other plans.
When my husband asked my daughter what she thought I might like for Christmas, she suggested a new thesaurus. Knowing my tastes in the matter, my husband searched high and low to find one organized by category. None of the brick-and-mortar stores carried it; he had to order it on-line. He warned me not to open the box that would be arriving.
When I found the box from Barnes and Noble on the doorstep a few days before Christmas, I figured it was the thick cookbook I had mentioned a few weeks earlier--the box was the perfect size. I was kind of bummed, thinking I had guessed my present. I was all ready to feign surprise as I opened the wrapped book on Christmas morning...and found I didn't have to pretend! I was, in fact, quite pleased. The 2009 edition of the thesaurus contains many new words added over the last twenty years. The type is easier on my eyes and I don't have to worry about pages detaching from the spine as I turn them! Husband found the perfect present for his geeky wife.
The new thesaurus sits beside me on the desk now when I write. I've retired the old one, but refuse to discard it. Saying goodbye to that old friend--comrade, buddy, companion--would be too painful. A memento of the first half of my writing life, it can rest in peace on my bookshelf, proud of its long service and satisfied with a job well done.
Now, if only my husband could find me book of plot twists...