Sunday, November 2, 2008

Presents vs Presence

Christmas is a time of gift giving. Sometimes there is a lot of stress in trying to figure out what to get for someone. Then, there is also the stress of spending too much. Last year Jay and I told our kids that our gift to them was to give each of them $$$. The only catch was that they could not spend any of it on themselves. They had to find others who needed help. What they did with their $$ $ was their gift to us. It was so much fun to see them searching out and finding ways to help others. They found a single dad that worked two jobs but still didn't make enough money for heating fuel. He would buy what he could afford each week but it wouldn't last. So they had his tank filled and bought toys and blankets for his children. Then they helped a blind boy go to a camp over Christmas vacation. They got him snow boots, gloves, a coat and hat. Jay and I watched our grandkids while our kids went shopping and bought toys and clothes, blankets and food. They delivered everything to schools and places to be distributed as to keep themselves annonymous. They had so much fun and so did we. It was contagous. Their friends wanted to do it too. This year I asked them to do the same thing with a twist. Since they all love their Dad and miss his physical presence so very much, I asked them, this year instead of presents can we give presence? I know how much their presence means to me. So in addition to searching for those in need, can we add our presence? They agreed. We also decided that we will draw names amoung us. Who ever we draw will recieve from us " a day." The giver will decide what to do and where to go with the person that they draw. It can be what ever adventure that you can come up with. You don't have to spend money just time. We are going to have to draw names soon so we can start planning.


Maison Douce said...

What a neat idea that was and what a great life lesson they received from you both...!! I will definitely have to remember this one!!! Thanks!

Teresa Is Awesome! said...

You have such wonderful ideas. i can't wait and see what everyone comes up for "the day".
Love Teresa

Kathi said...

This is such a beautiful way of teaching children about giving. I'm so sad that they lost their daddy.


Sharon said...

What a great idea Pam. That is just so loving and such a perfect way to find the real spirit of Christmas. What a neat legacy your husband has left for his children and grandchildren. I love the giving of a day as a gift, it's just wonderful!

Hugs, Sharon

Tropicana Rose said...

Pam!! I love it...your so creative in your life lessons. My kids have always written letters to eachother and read them outloud on Christmas morning. Instead of buying gifts we too wanted them to realize that there was more to it than just the gifts. So even before they could write I would sit with them each and help them write their letters to eachother even a simple I Love You was enough in the beginning and then the letters grew. Now every year we are all in tears by the words that the kids say to eachother and how much they truly care and appreciate one another. Those are just things that aren't said enough! I kept all of them in a cute burlap stocking. It's one of my favorite things at Christmas time. But this year we may add your idea of presence. It's hard enough to catch these troops around anymore so setting a time and date with eachother is an excellent plan. Thank you! Thank you!

loves, Jamie

Sharon said...

You are so sweet Pam! Thank you for your amazing comment today. I want you to know that I think of you often throughout the day and pray for you.

Bless you!


Halo Hill said...

What an amazing idea, and wow! You are an amazing lady.