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Case Study, November 2008

Ask the Genie - Julie's family

Sending gifts by post. Read our case study on a woman who manages to spread the charm of Christmas across the world.

Every month we analyse a new problem. Comments are welcome!

Case Study for November 2008
Sending gifts by post

Background: Julie is an adventurous woman. When she was young, she spent more time looking out the class room window than playing attention to her school work. She would dream of epic journeys through mountains, villages and distant seas. She wanted to meet the people on the other side of the world. She imagined the strange rituals they performed, the exotic clothes they would wear and the games they might play. When she was older she was rarely home. There wasn't a continent in the world she hadn't set foot on, nor an ocean she hadn't swum in.

After years of traveling the world, she returned to her own village to settle down. Not because she had exhausted her list of places to visit, but because of the handsome man in the next valley she would later marry. They had two children who shared her adventurous spirit. They would wander off for hours through the fields, playing games and pretending to explore forgotten lands.

When they grew up, they moved to different countries. Her son moved to a farm in South Africa and her daughter to a large city in Japan. Julie admired their courage to move their lives overseas, however Christmas wasn't the same without them. They had become a modern family that lived in the global village, where you didn't live in different area codes, you lived in different country codes.

The Gift: Julie wanted to send her children something special this Christmas. She got her whole family to make their wish lists at Today I Wish and used the "add a friend" feature to make their wish lists even easier to find. Her children had very long wish lists, especially with inspiration from the gift ideas provided by Today I Wish. Julie thought she knew her children well, but she learned a lot more about them when they started to express the things they valued through their wish list. She was touched when her daughter listed "Mum's Christmas Cake" under things that money can't buy. Her son listed mainly video games and DVDs, which were not easy to come by when you live over 100 miles away from the closest city.

The Problem: Julie wanted to give Christmas presents her children really wanted. Living in a small village in a different country made this difficult for her. Firstly, she couldn't make a Christmas cake and send it to her daughter. Posting something that heavy wouldn't be worth the cost and even if it did get to Japan, it may not make it through customs because it contained fruit. Further, she couldn't post the games and DVDs her son wanted because she too had no major shopping malls near her. So Julie turned to the Genie to help.

The Genie was inspired by her daughter's request. Julie's daughter would have her own family one day and couldn't rely on her mother to bake her a cake each year. So the Genie asked Julie to fill a box with baking tools to send to her daughter. Julie wrote out instructions on how to make her Christmas Cake, put it in a sealed envelope and wrote "top secret" on the front. As for her son, Today I Wish helped her solve the problem. Julie used the "Buy Now" feature next to the presents she wanted to find online. Amazon (an online shopping site) had them all in stock so she had them sent in no time. Many online stores allow you to send your gifts directly to the lucky receiver.

The outcome: Julie's daughter was over the moon to receive such a large package in the post. She felt such a sense of belonging when she learned the recipe to the Christmas cake that had been passed down through the women of her family. She felt a part of her family that Christmas, despite being on the other side of the world. Her son had a less emotional response (which was to be expected), unless you count the thrill he got from blowing up aliens in his video games. Julie realized that, with the help of the internet, family and gift giving are not bound by distance as much as they used to. It is difficult being away from each other at Christmas, so Genie asks that this year, and every year, we make an effort to make it special.

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i always wanted a genie that could give me 10 wishes that could come true today
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Naketa Williams
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sarah smith
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susan u evans
susan make speacil wish on her birthday like wedding dress susan wedding thank's
the best birthday ever
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Kiara Natasha
I want a neckles that can give me anything i want please?
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genie i want to be a real magic genie with real magical powers , i want to make things appear and disappear to make things float by blincking my eyes, by snapping my fingers and with my arms cross for real from now on and for ever


josh jones
There's prolly ppl all over the world the need stuff more than me but because of my situation I dnt have as much money as most ppl and iv been wanting these things for a long time and I'd never get them without some help well a lot of help thanks for reading this
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ava isabelle melton
im hungry so i really want ten thousands of cakes
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Can you give me a braclet that will give me any wish and the wish will come true in 5seconds. i can only make 5 wishes in oneday
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want a Genie to grant me 7 wishes
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Anjum k
Hi my wish is make me rich tonight by hit the powerball because I have lots of debts and no money to pay I lost my job my all saving is gone and I don't have nothing left , please if its true my wish make it real for me , please thank you,


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Ahlyssa Seals
I wish I was Rebecca and Rebecca was me


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Winter 👰
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