Saturday, November 17, 2007

Gift Giving

So, I read an article recently on the art of gift giving. I really enjoyed the article, but I had some things I disagreed with too.

In it, Weston says that gift cards are not gifts. Perhaps sometimes, but sometimes they really are gifts. Case in sweet sister is a mom of three, working in a job beneath her intelligence and abilities in order to be home with her kids during the day. Like us, they don't have tons of excess money lying around. Another thing I know about her is she enjoys shopping. To give her a gift card gives her the joy of shopping for herself when she doesn't always have that luxury. For others, maybe its a cop-out...but for my sister, I see it as something she'll truly enjoy. Another case in kids...they have lots of toys, so what I'd really like to give them is some new experiences....a music class, more swimming lessons...but if a giftcard isn't an option, then they will miss out on some of those neat things.

As someone who is just learning more about finding the right clothes to fit my body type, I find the idea of a gift card so nice. If someone buys me clothes, which is something I would like, I will likely end up in the endless return line at the end of December to get the right fit or color....or it will end up in the donation pile which really doesn't aid me. And I've always loved having the freedom to go to a movie because someone paid for it. Where I am in life right now, this is truly a gift. If I had loads of money, maybe I wouldn't appreciate it as much, but I really enjoy a gift of experience.

So, are the art of gift giving and living clutter-free mutually exclusive?

And where does "the list" fit in. I would love to say that I know all my nieces and nephews well enough to buy something they would enjoy and NOT ALREADY HAVE...but in our society, with all we own and keep, it would be likely they would get a duplicate. So, we compile lists. The list can be the same as the gift could make the art of gift giving cheap....or maybe it just helps me get to know these awesome people in my life that I don't get to spend enough time with. It depends on my attitude...and it depends on my intent.

So, I started my Christmas shopping this week. I have NEVER started this early...but I really like the Flylady thought of having most everything planned and done by December 1st. I'm not anywhere near there, but by planning ahead, I feel like it won't be crunch time. I am ready to eliminate the stress. So, what if I did buy a gift card....and what if I did buy a gift for my niece that wasn't on her list...hopefully I'm getting better at the art of gift giving for my family.

Monday, November 12, 2007

Bessie and Bob

Let me introduce you to Bessie and Bob.
They were some very special pumpkins in our Fall adventure. Bessie came to us from Grammie and Pa since they were going on vacation. She sat outside our door for several weeks...enjoying the attention of Trina and Alex whenever they came or went. She got lots of hugs. A few weeks later, Bob came to us from Gramma Deanie and Grandpa Larry. He sat with Bessie outside to keep her company. The faces we gave them came on Oct 30 and 31. They enjoyed sitting inside and sharing their smiles and surprised looks until they went to follow the Great Pumpkin just a week ago. We will miss Bessie and Bob, but we're glad we got to know them.