From the desk of Lori Aufderhar, Summit’s Director of Operations/Retirement Coach:
As we approach Black Friday, what most of us want for Christmas isn’t something wrapped up under the tree. Yet we get up early and hit the malls to find that perfect present. What do you really want this Christmas? Is it a pretty present with a great big bow?
Instead, we usually want the gifts of time with family and friends, acts of love or service, and forgiveness.
Flip it around: What do those on your shopping list want? It may not be found in the mall.
We all want to wrap up the perfect present that will “wow” the recipient. Yet we don’t want to spend the money just to have something under the tree that is meaningless. We don’t want something that will be re-gifted or returned.
When you think about those in your life and what they might really want and need, consider basing your gift around that concept. You can wrap up a little something to go along with it.
I know one couple who purchased passes to Disney, plane tickets, and rented a home for the entire family. They wrapped up little Disney themed presents for the kids to open before presenting the big family gift of taking their 4 children and 7 grandchildren to Florida for a week. The grandparents wanted time with their family, the families wanted a getaway together and help with the kids. It was a win all around – a big hit for them all. For everyone it was a wonderful gift, and the great memories created will be cherished for many years to come.
Parents of young children often want the gift of help with their kids. Consider the idea of wrapping up tickets to a play they’d like to attend with a gift certificate to a fun place for dinner before the show, and a note saying you’re planning to keep the kids for their date night.
Who is it we need to forgive? Who do we want forgiveness from? These are great gifts when appropriate. What about the gift of acceptance? Situations arise in our lives that aren’t our preference, yet when we cannot change these circumstances we can choose to accept and surrender. What a great gift for all concerned.
Let’s remember to be in gratitude this Thanksgiving for all the many blessings in our lives. Gratitude, peace, love, and joy – the best gifts of all.