Gifting with Intention

Written by Ann Burns

December 4, 2022

When the Villains are Beautiful

Whether you start shopping months in advance, or wait until Christmas Eve, gift giving can always pose a challenge.  What to get? Where to go?

Just getting stuff for the sake of having a gift can be stressful, even wasteful.  Sadly, materialism has very much entered the holiday scene.  Yet, it’s important to remember that gifting can be a beautiful sign of love and care.  It marks the time that we’ve taken to find something meaningful and will help us communicate how much we delight in our loved ones. 

So this year, prioritize thoughtfulness in your gift giving. 

I start my Christmas shopping whenever during the year because I make it my goal to prioritize thoughtful gifting.  So, if I stumble across the most ideal item for my husband in mid-October, then so be it. I don’t want to give just to give, but I want my gift to reveal my love and care.  

When I look back on the gifts that really touched me, they were always thoughtful and showed that someone took note of the things that make me smile. 

So, what can you give this Christmas?  

Give a Cozy Day

When I think of some of my friends and family members, I associate them with a cozy day.  Perhaps their favorite way to spend time is by a fireplace, laughing, buried under blankets, and sipping something warm. Warmth is their happy place.  And so, why not give them a cozy day?  It’s simple: take note of their favorite cozy things — tea, coffee, hot chocolate, and procure their favorites, for example: a bag of Peet’s coffee, a box of Twinings English Breakfast Tea, alongside some cozy slippers, and a candle.  The plus side to a gift like this is that’s practical — your Peet’s coffee drinker will love and use more Peet’s.  Your cozy enthusiast will appreciate a new candle to light in the early morning, and so forth and so on. 

Make It Special 

Homemade gifts have a bit of a negative connotation. Maybe you’re already cringing at the thought of Elmer’s glue and construction paper.  But no, my dear, homemade gifts can be the most fabulous items ever — so banish those visions of sticky paper dancing through your head. 

You can make body scrubs, perfumes out of essential oils, candles, photo collages, coffee mug mixers, soaps, sachets, etc… You can even give starters if you are into sourdough or kefir! 

Utilize websites like Pinterest and Etsy to garner more clever and festive ideas.

Thrifting Gems

If you’re on a budget or interested in being a little more sustainable, don’t overlook the fantastic thrift options out there. 

Our town has a charming New & Used Furniture Store that is rife with gems — paintings, mugs, books, and all kinds of delightful unique finds and on top of that, we get to support our town and small businesses. Online thrifting is a thing too! So don’t overlook spots like ThredUp or Thriftbooks!   

A Heartfelt Letter

Letters are so powerful!

So often we get caught up in the day to day that we don’t take the time to really connect with one another on a deeper level.  Writing a letter allows us to slow down and communicate the care that we have for those we love.

Letters also last; in writing a letter, we’ve documented our love for another and give the receiver a special way of holding onto that.  There have been times in my own life, when navigating a new or difficult season,  I have found the strength and hope to carry on from an old, cherished letter. 

Letters are also amazing because they complement various love languages: quality time (a good letter is time consuming!), affirmation, and gifts. 

Unfortunately, gift-giving has been marred by materialism and consumerism. 

The way to counteract this is to give with intention.  That way we are forced to slow down and choose things that are meaningful rather than just buying more stuff.  

After all, as one beloved character realized:

 “And the Grinch, with his Grinch-feet ice cold in the snow, stood puzzling and puzzling, how could it be so? It came without ribbons. It came without tags. It came without packages, boxes or bags. And he puzzled and puzzled ’till his puzzler was sore. Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn’t before. What if Christmas, he thought, doesn’t come from a store? What if Christmas, perhaps, means a little bit more?” 


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