Gift Giving

hearthandMy favorite part of Christmas is giving gifts. I love the reaction on people’s faces. I love the amount of time and thought I put into each gift. I rarely give a thoughtless gift and am troubled by it when I do.

I come from a family of givers. Both of my parents have always given more than the average person. I don’t ever remember a time where we financially struggled, but I’m sure like most young families they existed. What I do remember is always helping those less fortunate. Daddy ran a free program called “Job Network” out of the church where he would volunteer his time to helping people, typically homeless, write their resume and find jobs. Every Christmas we chose a family that wouldn’t have gifts to open on Christmas morning and bought them gifts (a program through the church). I can distinctly remember a time where there was a young family struggling and living out of their car in a parking lot at Home Depot. It was cold out. I remember Daddy parking our car and the look on their faces when he bought them their next few meals and provided a little warmth. My Mom volunteered often. I grew up volunteering with her – in soup kitchens and then when I was older we volunteered together at My House – a non profit housing organization for homeless infants and children. This has rubbed off and now my brother holds an annual charity event with proceeds going to My House. Neither of parents ever asked for recognition, accolades or even really spoke about what they were doing or had done. It was never a big deal. It was always just a part of life and who we were as a family: grateful and giving.

I can remember a time growing up where my Mom would talk herself out of buying something nice for herself. I can remember Daddy always telling me to make sure Mom buys herself something nice, but she never did. She was happier buying for others and giving. 

Over the past five years of so I’ve seen this beautiful transformation in my Mother. She has gone from giving, giving, giving to now giving, giving, giving, but most importantly,  giving to herself.  She treats herself. She treats others. She’s giving. She nourishes her soul with a multitude of things: physical exercise, pedicures, massages, volunteering, spending time with family, etc.

I have realized that I am much like my parents: always give, give giving. I am nowhere near the Saints either of my parents are, but I am more inclined to help someone else before helping myself.

Remember when I said my resolution this year is to be more like my wonderful, glorious mother? I am doing my best to stick with that. (It’s a big shoe to fill.) I have decided to do more self giving and self pampering.

I am trying to make it a habit to get a monthly pedicure – with my mom, nonetheless! In addition to that, I’ve seen all of these “boxes” that can get delivered to your house. Today, I purchased my first one! The Graze Box! If you end up deciding you want one you can click that link and get the first and fifth one free. They’re $6/box (including shipping) and you can have it shipped as often or as little as you’d like. You choose from various snacks that you’d like to try. The nutritional information is listed. If you do decided to buy a Graze box, click that link and use it because then I can donate a dollar to Uganda Farming.

I found this list and I think I might thumb through it and pick a couple of fun ones out.

What do you do to treat yourself and give a little self pampering?

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