The Greatest Gift of All

The Holidays are here.  Like, RIGHT HERE.  

So, that was fast!  

It's funny how when we're young we feel like Christmas takes forrr-evvv-errr to get here.  And now that we are, let's just say not as young, it seems like we are still burping up the Thanksgiving turkey as we sit down for Christmas dinner. 

Our moms were right-- Time flies when you stop having fun.

Not that being an adult doesn't have it's moments.  Work parties, booze, vacations and watching the kids in our lives open gifts are all definitely fun.  But it's not like we have some mysterious fat man waiting to bring us a fully loaded grown-up Power Wheels just because we didn't bite our siblings (much) this year.

Nope.  We can bite our siblings year-round and still get a new ipad if our budgets allow it.  Thanks a lot, Kris Kringle.  

As adults, our Christmas is just a teeny bit more complicated now.  And so are the presents.  Pull out your plastic, people... Or not.

Instead, let's take out the plastic all together.  Go ahead and chuck the cash and coins, too.  What happens when money is taken out of the equation for gifts?  What are we left with?  What do we still have to give?

Time.  Our precious, precious time is what we are left with.  

But I actually have more money right now than I do time... And that's still not very much!

I have a feeling a thought that is similar may have crossed your mind after I mentioned the T-word.  And I get it.  You've got your family and immediate family and his family and their family and cooking and hosting and shopping and and and and.  I know!

It's the Holidays-- there's good reason we get sloppy drunk for the lot of it.

But let's just say you were able to think of your time as a gift to others.  Where would you start?  

Is your mom still asking when you are going to help her go through old albums and organize family pictures?  Has your mother-in-law been dying for you to show her how you get that flaky pie crust just right?  Does your dad keep saying that one day the two of you will be able to sit down and enjoy the game together like you used to?  Does your brother still mention how fun it was when it was just the two of you playing nintendo and eating junk together?  Does your best friend still talk about how amazing it would be to get together and have an old school sleepover?

Think about it.

When you are around the people you love, do they mention the $30 giftcard you got them to Olive Garden last year?  I didn't think so.  (And I mean really why should they. Olive Garden? 2001 called and they want their food back.)

No, I doubt they mentioned the electric foot massager or the 257th 'Cozy Christmas' Gold Canyon candle that they've acquired, either.  In fact, I bet most of them couldn't recall exactly what you got them the previous year if you asked them.  

I'm going to bet that they did bring up something though.  That little something would be YOU.  

Maybe it was the time you made them laugh so hard that they still think about it when they are having a bad day, or the time you surprised them with a visit and brought over their grandson, or the time you brought them coffee for no reason, or the time you guys tried to be bake Pinterest Santa cookies and they came out looking like strange-looking pedophiles instead so you ate them all and laughed until you peed yourselves... (Maybe none of those things, but, hopefully you're catching my drift!)

What I'm say is this:  The people you love in your life want want just that-- for the people they love to be a part of theirs.

That is the gift they desire.  Don't get me wrong-- sometimes a solid gift is exactly what they need.  You won't see me turning down a shopping spree anytime soon!  But those gifts will never be able to compare to the ones that only you can give yourself.

Like setting time aside to truly enjoy someone you care for that is not guaranteed to be there forever.  Laugh with someone who longs to hear the sound of it.  Play the boardgames with the kids and let them win.  Tell them you really tried.  Look at your husband, your fiance, your boyfriend, and confess all the reasons you couldn't be happier enduring the craziness of theHolidays with anyone but them.  

Give the gifts that can't be wrapped.

Those are the gifts that we carry with us.  They are the gifts that warm us to the core on a cold night.  They are the gifts that we can pass down through stories and the only way to defy time.  These are the gifts we are not listing but our hearts are waiting for.

So, go ahead and place a big fat bow on your head.  Because your prescence is the greatests present of all.

Charlotte Crow

I'm a modern day farmer's daughter who shares and seeks inspiration from the comical & beautiful things that get caught in life's curious little web.