When I was in kindergarten my school had one of those shops set up where you could buy gifts for your family. All of the items were a buck or two. I made a list of everyone in my family and my mom gave me a few dollars and away I went. The shop was set up in the school library and they even had older students gift-wrapping the magical gifts for us. I was in awe! I had never been given the freedom to buy gifts for anyone without one of my parents supervising. Unfortunately many of the memories from this experience have faded but a few things still stand out. I was a little unclear about how gift giving worked at the time. For some reason, I decided to pick out gifts I would like, instead of thinking of what they would like. For instance, I got my mom a wind-up toy of a smurf on a bike. It was so cool! I couldn’t wait to play with it…with her, of course.
I remember coming home with my handful of wrapped “gifts” (a.k.a toys) and proudly placing them under the tree. I couldn’t wait for my family to open their gifts. It seemed like it was taking forever for Christmas to come. One day I couldn’t stand it anymore and decided to sneak my mom’s gift into my room. Since I shared a room with my sister, Kristy, I had to be careful that she wouldn’t see me. I locked the door, sat on the floor by my bed, and carefully opened the package, making sure that I could put it all back together again. I then proceeded to play with the smurf toy for a while, before re-wrapping the gift to perfection (which I’m sure wasn’t noticeable at all). I managed to sneak it back under the tree, without anyone even noticing. In the end, my mom loved her smurf and she even let me take care of him for her.
This magical time of year sure conjures up the childhood memories. Whether they’re memories of sitting on Santa’s lap, shaking gifts, standing under the mistletoe, laying under the Christmas tree, playing with the manger scene figurines, singing carols, listening to “The Night Before Christmas,” or decorating Christmas cookies, these memories are stock that you should cash in for some extra doses of peace and joy amidst the extra busyness of this season. Next time you jump in the car to run another holiday-related errand, I invite you to turn off the radio and just spend a few minutes thinking back on your own holiday memories. They will be more precious than any gift you’ll find under the tree.
[tags]Christmas, gifts, Christmas memories, “The Night Before Christmas,” Santa, carols, mistletoe, Christmas tree, smurfs, manger scene, Christmas cookies, joy, peace, busyness[/tags]