The holidays are upon us and I find myself thinking of gifts. I’ve always been someone who loves this time of year. I don’t mind the hectic pace, the monumental traffic, and the calories lining up to be devoured. My mom always teases me that if I weren’t in our family we wouldn’t be celebrating much of anything. What she means by this is that the beautiful Christmas tree wouldn’t be up, Christmas goodies wouldn’t get baked, and gifts wouldn’t be bought. Basically, when it comes to this time of the year, I’m the glue that keeps this family together. Hell, if I don’t wrap the gifts myself no one would have anything to open come the 25th. *laughs*
I got my love of giving gifts from my mother. The depth of her generosity never fails to continuously surprise me. Even I have my limits when it comes to whom to give gifts to, but my mom just keeps on giving, no matter who wronged her. She reminds me to give without expectations of anything in return. She also teaches me to be humble. Sometimes I forget, and I’m glad she’s there to remind me.
When it comes to gift giving, I have one hard and fast rule: know who you’re giving to. Gifts show what you think of the person. I say, why give something at all when it’s half-assed or without any thought put into it? The smile on someone’s face when they open your present is so worth the time you spent standing in line to pay for it.
Let’s say your friend likes the color green and food. Grab a basket, go to the snack isle of your local grocery store, and fill that basket with every green colored snack you can find. If the packaging is green, grab that too. Then wrap the basket in cellophane, add a green bow, and voilà, you have the perfect gift for someone who loves green and food. I knew someone who loved beer. So grabbing another basket, I filled it with different kinds of beer, whether bottled or canned. I went from light to dark, ten kinds in all. He couldn’t stop smiling when I gave it to him. This goes for someone who likes coffee also. Don’t just spring for a Starbucks gift card. Actually go to the store and buy several kinds of coffee, arrange them in a pretty box, and tie a ribbon around it.
If you have time, handmade presents are the best too. I know someone who knits wonderful scarves. I like giving baked goods I made personally. You can never go wrong with cookies or brownies. If you don’t have time to make everything from scratch, good ol’ Betty Crocker has tons of mixes you can choose from. Just as long as you made it yourself, it doesn’t matter if it came from a box.
They say it’s the thought that counts. These days we’re all so busy that we don’t have time anymore to put thought into buying someone we care for a proper gift. I feel sad when this happens because Christmas if the best time to give. To let someone know through a small token that you thought of him or her. Gifts don’t have to be expensive. They just have to mean something.