The holidays are upon us, and we are once again left with the dilemma of gift giving. For most, this is where our holiday stress comes from.
Over the years, our family would occasionally have a homemade gift-giving Christmas with our extended families. It was fun to see what family members would make and witness talents we didn’t know existed.
I’m not crafty, but I can bake, so my gift to everyone was a container of assorted Christmas cookies and a jar of my mom’s recipe for Christmas Tea. One year I made my parents their own zen gardens. Mom loved crystals, so I added those in place of stones and white sand. My dad loves cars and trucks, so I filled his with “dirt brown” sand and farm equipment.
My mom made beautiful Christmas ornaments; my dad made everyone a game they could play like solitaire. My husband designed fun sweatshirts. Gifts made with love and time. Gifts I will never forget.
Choosing the perfect gift isn’t as hard as you think, but it does help to know the likes, dislikes and interests of your family and friends. I have four grandsons ages 2 to 8. Their likes change with the speed of light. I’m just trying to keep superheroes straight, which clothes are cool and which are “so yesterday.” I find games and books can work for all ages. My son likes cash and gift cards, my daughter likes to open sparkly objects, my daughter-in-law likes shopping, and my son-in-law likes clothes and meat. One item they all seem to appreciate are Christmas ornaments. In fact, the ornament I made when I was 8 years old hangs on my daughter’s tree now.
If you have elderly parents or grandparents on your gift list, think about their lives. They don’t need one more item to dust and after all these years, they have their house decorated like they like it. If they are on a fixed income, gift cards to restaurants, grocery stores, and events like a show at The NSB Little Theatre are perfect. Gift baskets of food and perhaps their favorite wine is popular. What can make it even more perfect? You join them.
Time is the perfect gift. A gift that costs absolutely no money, yet it seems to be getting harder and harder to give it.
We are going to continue these holiday gift ideas next month. In the meantime, if you come up with some gift ideas you might like to share – PLEASE don’t hesitate to contact me and share your holiday homemade gift ideas.