By Arleen M. Kaptur
During the Holidays it seems like everyone is worried about
"something." The "somethings" are varied, such as "How will I
find the time", "Which gift is the best gift" and "Will I be able
to afford to buy an expensive gift because everyone else will
give them an expensive one."
The Holidays are meant to be times of joy, happiness, and
sharing. The joy comes from just watching the white glistening
snow fall, or the trees and garlands that decorate every home and
Happiness - well, each of us has so much to be grateful for - we
are alive, we are aware, and we have the capability to do and
Now, the difficult one to some -
sharing. Sharing in a monetary way carries with it the ribbons of
so many "just not right" reasons. You give a gift you bought that
you really could not afford but felt that your outward image
You hand it over, it is accepted, and that's that. But, let's
check out something here. You can make a gift with your own
hands, or you give time and attention to a small child, an
elderly neighbor, or a bewildered teen.
It comes in wrapping paper of care and concern, with tinsel that
lights up the eyes of the recipient, and with a bow that ties
their world together.
Your cost - more than you felt you had, or could spend, or could
recoup after the Holidays - but less than the cost of the sun,
stars and moon - a gift that has no monetary value only riches
that even royalty can't buy.
Showing a small child the Christmas Star, baking cookies and
watching them disappear as quickly as they come out of the oven,
or ohhing and ahhing over a gift a child made in school that now
hangs proudly on the refrigerator door with your mentioning it to
everyone that stops by - there is not enough gold in the world.
A simple pair of mittens with a promise of a "sledding
afternoon", a basket with marshmallows, chocolate, and grahams
with a note that invites the recipient to a warm friendly fire on
the coldest night of the year to munch, crunch, and talk, a hand-
decorated box of stationary, including a few stamps with the
words, "I promise to answer every letter."
Now, when the Holidays are over and the overly
expensive gifts are put on a closet shelf, which gift
do you think will be brought out, enjoyed, and used?
In other words, think of the person, what they need, who they
are, and what would bring them happiness over and over again, and
use your creativity and imagination.
A coloring book to a small child with stars and the moon, will be
cherished and slipped under their pillow because you promised a
night of star-gazing.
A box of flavored teas given to grandma with a note about joining
her for a "tea party" will bring a smile to her face every time
she sees it.
A young teen - a ticket slipped into a hat or scarf of school
colors - the "ticket" your offer to drive him/her and pick
him/her up from that "doing" that they would not be able to get
Grandpa - well, you know how he loves your pot roast - a "freezer
meal" that he can make when he wants to.
Aunt Claude and Uncle Bob - two candles in a box with embroidered
napkins and a "Delivery" of a fine meal - all prepared - on a
"special date" that means a lot to them.
Your boss - a calendar with all the birthdays and anniversaries
marked so he doesn't need to ask. But also don't forget that the
"magic" only works if you are set to keep your "promises". The
guarantee - memories on both sides with a lot of hugging,
smiling, and even giggles.
At first, this may seem awkward and "weird." It's catching -
because others will pick up on the "cheer" and you have started a
tradition of "giving the gift that keeps giving" , and not the
one that is charged, delivered, and in January when the bill
arrives - you will probably be the only one thinking about it.
Give a gift that goes beyond Christmas - give from the heart and
the Spirit of Christmas will envelope your home and hearth with a
warmth that will make your world beautiful.
©Arleen M. Kaptur For the free Simple/Rustic Living
Newsletter, please visit: http://www.arleenssite.com