Keeping My Eye on the Ball…Er, Box

Not long ago, I was worried about having too few Christmas gifts for our daughter. More accurately, I was worried about her receiving too much for her birthday and Christmas from other family members and felt that the hubby’s and my hands were tied as to how many gifts we could/should get her for Christmas ourselves. However, today, as I wrapped said presents with my mother, I realized how dangerously close I had come to falling away from the reason for the Christmas season. No, I’m not just talking about the story of Jesus’ birth. What I mean is the spirit of giving, of generosity, compassion, and care for others rather than self. I desperately DO NOT want Christmas to become about what or how many gifts Elizabeth receives. I knew too many people who that was ALL they cared about with Christmas and it broke my heart. I do NOT want that for my daughter.

So, yeah, for a hot minute I fell into that trap and let it stress me out. But, no, Elizabeth has everything she needs and more than enough of her potential ‘wants’. She will have her first big birthday party this Saturday (which is stress enough for me); her family and friends are all around. She is smart and strong, clever and healthy. She is loved and cared for, with food in her belly, a roof over her head, and clothes on her back. She has all she needs. The gifts are icing.

Now, I love giving gifts. I love surprising people and making them smile. What I give them might not always be exactly what they want, but I do enjoy trying to find gifts that might mean something to them or, at least, give a grinĀ and/or a chuckle, even if it is accompanied by a shake of the head. Buying gifts for family is often difficult as it is hard to know what they might want or need. For some reason, I feel a bit more freedom with buying and putting together gifts for friends. So, in addition to getting gifts for my family, I have done my best to get gifts for my closest friends, though I know that I couldn’t get everyone something. I honestly don’t expect anything, not really, though I didn’t really realize it until I said it aloud to my husband. I know that these seasons are hard enough on others, and they already have given me a great gift in their friendship and time. This is just another way for me to say thank you for that particular gift of theirs.

So while it might be stressful and tiring, crazy and hectic. I really do hope that we are able to find the happy moments in the midst of the rush of this season. I had to agree with a family friend today in that, yes, it finally was feeling like Christmas as I wrapped and stacked presents for these friends and loved ones. Your smiles (hopefully) are on their way, dear ones.