(compiled by Marilyn Beck, Stacy Jenel Smith, Stephanie DuBois and Emily Feimster)
What was the most memorable Christmas present you ever received or couldn't wait to give?
I'm such a geek with stuff. My sister got me one of those chairs that have the speakers in it - a recliner kind of thing that you plug music into, basically. The bass vibrates the whole chair. It's so cool. And things I gave, well, for years, my mom and dad constantly shuttled the three of us around, wherever we needed to go to work, in one car. So one year I got my brother an Acura, my mom a Cadillac and my sister a P.T. Cruiser. It's the greatest feeling to give back to people who helped you all the time.
Regis Philbin: Once when we were in L.A., I bought my wife a pair of earrings that required your ears to be pierced. I remember her cold mocking laugh when she opened them, as if to say, 'He doesn't even know my ears.' I never, ever bought her jewelry again without her seeing, feeling, and okaying it. What I've got is Christmas, then my wife's birthday February 1, then Valentine's Day, then our anniversary March 1, so four big ones in a row. Even though she's not surprised, I'd rather have her love her gifts.
Vanessa Hudgens: My guitar when I was 16. I asked my parents for something memorable, and they gave me a guitar.
John Stamos: The year I got a Tony the Tiger drum set. That was absolutely the best.
Sabrina Bryan: I had a little mini Shih Tzu puppy. My mom fell in love with it, so the next Christmas I gave her a puppy. She just loved it. I've never been so excited to give a gift. It was so perfect. Mine is Rocky, hers is Teddy.
Kathryn Morris: Last year, we gave the crew these hand-made, limited edition "Cold Case" guitars that Gibson made for us individually. They took so much time to make, one by one, and they only made 100. They had the show logo across the whole guitar. Music is such a huge part of our show. We couldn't wait to give them out. You had to sign for them - you had to be part of the crew. That was a cool time.
Michelle Ryan: It was probably a little necklace and earring set from Tiffany's my parents gave me for Christmas two years ago, when I was 21.
Sam Waterston: A beautiful wooden antique chess set my wife gave me many, many years ago. It was made by Staunton, a 19th century manufacturer of chess men. It's on display in our den.
Maura Tierney: I gave my parents this trip to Italy, a walking tour around Tuscany - very first class. I was very excited about it.
Stone Cold Steve Austin: As far as gifts I've given -- me and my brothers and sister went in on a rifle for our dad - a Remington Model 700 - after he was diagnosed with cancer. At the time, we didn't know whether he'd ever be able to go hunting again. It was a very special gift because he was able to beat cancer, three years ago now, and we have been out hunting together since then.
Gail O'Grady: I'm a huge Barbie fan. I had so many Barbies, instead of the traditional carrying cases, I got Barbie luggage. I know it sounds kind of strange but I was very excited about that. I actually still have all of them. As far as giving gifts - I start Christmas shopping very early, and I'm so excited about giving the gifts I can't wait, and I give them out. So by September, I have to go shopping again.
Phylicia Rashad: (The former "Cosby Show" matriarch was recently introduced as Dule Hill's mom on the USA Network's "Psych" and is starring in the upcoming ABC TV adaptation of the Broadway play "A Raisin in the Sun" with P. Diddy and Audra McDonald) One Christmas when I was in college, I opened a gift from my father and it was the most beautiful suede coat with a sumptuous fox collar. It was absolutely tasteful, nothing gaudy about it, just beautiful," recalls Rashad. "My mother and I had gone to this shopping center some months before as I was getting ready to leave for school. The winter coats had come out and there was this beautiful coat with this collar. I looked at it and liked it so much, my mother said it's very stylish and just looked at me. Didn't' say a word, then here I was receiving this coat for Christmas. I later found out my mother went to my father and said 'I'm going to get her this coat because she deserves it.' That's a very special Christmas memory. It was quite expensive for back then and not the normal fare for a college student. But the coat was the by-product of what really made it special. What really made it special was my parents in conversation and in response to each other, holding their daughter in high regard.
Debbie Allen: (dance/choreography icon and "So You Think You Can Dance"judge) I remember the Christmas when Phylicia (Rashad, her sister) and I were struggling artists in New York. We had a can of tuna fish between us and our cat - forget even thinking about a turkey. We promised each other we wouldn't worry about Christmas gifts. We just wanted our parents to think we were doing well. I remember us being in a phone booth, telling tales to our dad - 'We're having the best time' -- because we were determined to make it and we didn't want them to know how struggling we were, and to say, 'Come home.' Anyway, I don't know how I did it, but somehow I scraped enough money together to buy her a pair of earrings. Then it turned out, she bought me a pair of earrings as well. I still have them.
Cat Deeley: ("So You Think You Can Dance" and Fox New Year's Eve Live host) Every little girl at some point wants a pony, I guess, but I couldn't actually ride, because of my terrible hay fever. This year I'm going to my parents' home town, Birmingham, 100 miles from London, and have Christmas there, which will be lovely, a big roast turkey and all that. And I'm going to take riding lessons. I quite fancy doing that. I'm hoping my hay fever won't bother me because it's the winter. It's my Christmas present to myself, and maybe it will be the most memorable.
Tom Bosley: (former "Happy Days" dad and star of Hallmark Channel movie "Charlie & Me" Jan. 5) When I was a kid, my grandmother always acknowledged Christmas as her birthday, and, being very Jewish, there were no Christmas decorations or anything. But as all the kids started growing up, she realized her day wasn't just hers, that it meant a lot to other people, and there was more and more celebration.
James Lesure: ("Las Vegas") I think the best gift I ever gave was to a girlfriend I had once. I was living in London for a year and wasn't supposed to come home, but I snuck back into town without her knowing and surprised her. I got her good.
John Tartaglia: (Broadway star and creator/producer/star of The Disney Channel's "Johnny and the Sprites") I'd have to say that the best Christmas gift I ever received was one I got last Christmas. Two of my closest friends surprised me- we have a country house that has an old, dusty, dumpy attic in it. On Christmas morning, after we had opened up what I thought was the last of the presents, they took me upstairs to the attic, I opened the door, and saw that they had spent the week before transforming it into a "Disney/puppet workshop" room for me...I mean, they put down flooring, put up dry walling, painted it, put electricity in it and hung up posters, pictures, and bought a bunch of beautiful things for the room. It was unbelievable...Truly a gift from the heart. I now have this amazing, special room in the house, and every time I'm in there, I think of how lucky I am to have such amazing people in my life.
Julie McCullough: (Funny Bunny, "The Girls Next Door") The most special Christmas gift I've ever given is the laughs and smiles on the faces of the men and women of the Armed Forces. I donate my time and performances as a headliner on the "Dog Tag Comedy Tour" in Afghanistan."
Shamika Cotton: (HBO's "The Wire") The best gift that I ever received for Christmas was my Casio Tone Bank CT-650 Keyboard when I was 14 years old. At the time, it was a really expensive and I begged my mother for it. I didn't think she would get it because of the cost, but on Christmas morning, I walked into the living room and there it was sitting out of the box on the couch. I'll never forget that. I still have it and play it to this day, sitting right next to my computer.
Jessalyn Gilsig: ("Nip/Tuck") This year, I can't wait to give my husband (film producer Bobby Salomon) the book I've been making for him. We had a baby last year, and I put together an album of photos of him and our daughter.
Milo Ventimiglia: ("Heroes") The best one I've ever received - and I'll try not to get too emotional - is every year that I get to be with my family. I try not to be a person of material value, but I tell you what, every time I get to sit around a Christmas tree or sit around a table with my mom and dad and sisters, that's the best gift I could ever think about getting.
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