What are the most cherished gifts you have ever received?
For me that list is easy. They are the most thought-filled gifts and probably some of the least expensive ones I’ve been given.
- There is the Christmas stocking my parents purchased for me when I was four months old because they could not afford any other gifts.
- There is the memory of the first gift my husband ever purchased for me, after hearing me talk about a song I loved. (This is years before instant downloads, so he visited every music store possible looking for that tape and finally had to ask if a store had it.) …It had just come in and had to be unpacked and priced before they could sell it to him.
- Then there’s a special collection of Hallmark tree ornaments, that remind my husband and I of a special memory from our dating years. In order to purchase all four of them, he had to go to the mall every week for a month…
This year I am especially inspired by two expat families who are determined to make Christmas memories for their children in spite of the land that we live in. For little cost, and with little risk they have created memories that their family will cherish for years to come:
One named a plant Mohammed, created their own decorations, and turned that plant into their Christmas tree last year. Their kids liked it so much that this year when they had the option of a more traditional tree, they wanted Mohammed!
The other is celebrating their first Christmas here with their 3-year old daughter. They located boxes of different sizes, covered them in red and green tissue paper and stacked them in the shape of a tree, complete with a star on top. …And then spent lots of time decorating each box. The rest of their house has been decorated with just as much love, thought and innovation!
All of these stories remind me of my favorite episode of The Cosby Show. It’s an episode where Cliff and his son-in-laws make a bet to see who can purchase the most impressive and romantic gift for their wives without exceeding a $25.00 limit.
- One gave his wife a single pearl, and vowed to keep buying her one every year until she could have the necklace she always wanted.
- Another made a time capsule with a handkerchief that included lipstick from their first kiss, and a flower from their wedding.
- Cliff told a story about a barrette that Clair wanted when they were first dating, and claimed that he tracked it down for her. Clair angrily responded that another girl liked the barrette – she actually wanted a green bracelet. …Only to open the box and find the bracelet!
Today in the final days before Christmas when people are at their busiest and feeling more stress than joy, remember:
Merry Christmas To Each of You! I Pray That You Experience The True Love Of This Season All Year Long!
Image Credit: Jaynia Samaroo and iStock