There are many holiday gifts we can give that don’t require us to put even more pressure
on ourselves. My good friend posted a graphic face book post about society going into debt out of a sense of guilt. It seemed the friend was struggling with being judged for being ‘selfish’ for not wanting to give gifts. Then another friend posted a reminder that many this season are suffering. They are sad, dealing with tragedy, death, illness and loss.
There is a great daily challenge at firstname.lastname@example.org/love-book for those who want to have a personal growth experience during the holidays. The gift of forgiveness can certainly make for a more joyful holiday; especially if we are choosing to forgive ourselves!
For those just looking for some free cool stuff, here are some personal favorites I used when paying my way through college!
- Bake Cookies. You can cut and drop them on a sheet and viola! You can write sayings on them like: Joy. You Matter. Marry Me. Sisters. Broke. Eat Me. It all depends on your mood and sense of humor.
- You Are Special Box. Wrap the box and the lid in paper. You can use newspaper, recycled art, scraps cut from magazines and so on. Then in the box write all the things you appreciate about this person! You can also use a mason jar. Then each day they can pull out a saying. My husband and children did this for me and it was a great way to start each day and I felt very loved 🙂
- Frame a Photo. Most of us have at least one frame or can get one cheap. Print off a meaningful photo and frame it. You can create a Meme online. There are also ways online to print if you don’t want to go to the library (free).
- Draw a Painting. Even if you are not artistic go online for easy tips on how to make a special painting. Wrap it in a brown Publix paper bag – they make the most beautiful wrapping paper. Draw some art on the wrapping paper.
- Beach Art. Write a message in the sand, print it, and give to your love or FB it if you are far away. Find a little bottle (from someone’s recycle bin) and put some sand in it with a note or poem.
- Volunteer your time. Invite your friends to go with you as a way to celebrate the riches you have in your life that others may not. My children served food to homeless children. There is no better way than to send a message of gratitude to children than for them to see all they have compared to children who have no home this holiday season.
- Have a pot luck. You can do this the day before and do a fast the day of Christmas to support all those who are going hungry. It can add meaning and significance that is now special to you for this season.
- Invite all your friends to walk. Go ahead start a holiday tradition as a way to support unity and health on a day that has become an orgy of food and fat!
Number 6 is great for parents that can’t afford right now to get what their children. It is a way to show the children that even though the latest XBox, Iphone etc are not under the tree …. We have a home, food, and the love of each other.
Google a fun project you can do with one another and see what is going on in the community. Children, family, friends and our partners want our love and presence more than anything. They will not remember most gifts as the years fade. They will remember those who loved and stayed present for them!