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Friday, December 24, 2010

To Give...

This is the time of year for giving. Everyone bustling about...searching for just the right gift for Aunt Jane or cousin Bob. Christmastime has become so commercial over the years and It has become more of a "chore" and an obligation. Over the last four or five years I have really changed my buying habits because of the terrible economic downturn and I am sure it has been the same for many people. We simply don't have the extra money to spend on gifts for everyone...especially those obligatory gifts for relatives we only see once a year and hardly know. You wind up buying something...anything so you aren't empty-handed at the family gathering. Many of us are now making gifts for family and friends. paper crafting has gotten so beautiful ...that giving a handmade gift these days is really something to be cherished. I know Carol made about fifteen or so...little Post-It notebooks for all the girls/ladies in her family. Not only were they absolutely adorable but they were a useful gift that every recipient will cherish and use for a long time. And she is proud to show and give the beautiful things she has made...not bought. In each little notebook was a piece of herself...a little piece of her much better that a cheese log from the mall.

Every year for the last decade or so I have participated in a program called the "LoKahi Tree"  It is a program sponsored and run by the Salvation Army where you volunteer to make Christmas happen for a family that just can't afford gifts for their children . I have always drawn a family with two kids and I have enjoyed buying all kinds of (useful) gifts for them to open on Christmas morning. Although they mainly need clothes and shoes I would always try to give that one special gift that would make their eyes light up on Christmas morning. The boys usually wanted boogie boards or skateboards and the girls wanted clothes and MP-3 players and download cards.Then for the parents...really the whole family ...I would load them up with groceries so they would have a Holiday Feast. I used to go all out for my elected families and the feeling I would get from doing all this was the most wonderful , warm and deeply fulfilling feeling I have ever experienced. The feeling of making someone else happy...of making someone else's day a little brighter. These last few years have been hard on me and everyone around me and even though I can't afford to do things like I used to I still manage to participate in the "LoKahi Tree" . I have come to the realization that I do this as much for the families as I do for myself. I always find if I am feeling down or sad or overwhelmed...the greatest cure is to reach out and do something nice for someone else.

I hope all of you will take the time to give to others this Holiday Season. As scrappers we are naturally givers is a quality deep within us...So reach out to someone. .. you might really be surprised at the difference such  a small gesture can make in another person's life ...and in yours....After "give" is really to receive....

Have a happy and safe Holiday filled with the Love and Joy of family and good friends  ...

Love to you all ,
Barrie & Carol



  1. I enjoyed reading this beautiful post. I think it is the greatest gift of all to give to those who are less fortunate!

  2. What a lovely post - and the most wonderful gift of yourself in giving to others as you do.