Sunday, December 20, 2009

Made with LOVE

Christmas gift giving hasn't always been my strong suit. Not because I don't love giving people gifts, but simply because I don't like giving people "things". I like to gift with meaning... not just because I'm told that this is the time of year that I'm supposed to buy someone a gift-- this includes all holidays. I used to scour stores looking for that perfect gift... something special that my recipient would adore and know for a fact that it came from me. After having kids, searching the stores became a near impossibility... and I reverted to gift cards. While quite practical and convenient... they always missed the mark for me as something "special" and "memorable".

I needed to do something different... to fulfill my gift giving desires. Christmas 2005, I decided that I was going to make my gifts. I'm not crafty at all. But one thing I can do is cook. So that year, I baked tirelessly in the kitchen crafting brownies, marshmallows, truffles, elephant ears, cookies, spiced nuts, peanut brittle, breads... etc etc etc. For me, it was exactly what I needed to give. Of course, I took in to account what I knew our recipients liked... and I put a whole lot of LOVE into everything I made. I decorated box, grabbed an old cookie tin or glass jar and filled them with my specialties...

This year, I thought about not baking anything... then Claire's dance teacher said, "I can't wait for your box. Mmmm... raspberry truffles." I smiled and listened as she told everyone around her how she savored every bite of her Christmas present and has been looking forward to this Christmas since the last. At that moment, I realized that my gifts have become a sort of Christmas tradition.

What I've learned? Gifts don't have to be extravagant or cost much to mean a lot. Quite simply...they just need to be filled with LOVE.

Check out this repurposed Peanut Butter Jar. A gift in waiting. Oh yeah... those are Rocky Road Crunch Bars :) Giving from the heart has never felt tasted SO good.

This holiday....make something for someone.

"It came without ribbons! It came without tags! It came without packages, boxes, or bags!"... "Maybe Christmas doesn't come from a store. Maybe Christmas... perhaps... means a little bit more."