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Thursday, December 16


I am gathering little gifts for my little family. My ancestors, paternal and maternal both, were not prolific reproducers. My brother and I each produced one perfect kidlet. We have lost family members, some way too soon. And so our immediate group can fit into a minivan and have room left over for a hitchhiker.

As my brother and I grew older, it became almost silly to gift each other. There were no things that we wanted that we did not already own. So, we present token gifts to the kids and try relentlessly to find something for Mom that she won't wrinkle her nose at.

Now that my son is expanding our group with the addition of a wife, there is a renewed sense of family. We have gathered with her family and enjoyed them. I love the woman my son has chosen. When they speak of having kids, my heart swells.

They mentioned over Thanksgiving that they wanted to upgrade their iPhones and it was the perfect time to take them to the phone store to get them and scratch that item off the to-do list.

So, no shopping for their gifts. But what I love to do every year is stuff stockings. For my son and his fiance and their dogs and my nephew. It is my fun time. I love searching odd places for fun stuffers. Gathering smiles, I think. Finding the perfect silliness for one of them tickles me, fills me with Christmas spirit.

And I find that while I'm doing this fun shopping, I am really thinking about these loved ones. Sensing them. This will make him smile, I think. This will turn into a family joke. She will love this little trinket. I might not have such a fun time if the family was larger. When the kids were small, shopping was basically checking off requested items from a list while walking the aisle of Toys r Us.

Now it takes imagination.Now, I draw them closer as I turn a tiny trinket in my hand and picture the laughter. It makes me think of what makes each of them tick. It is somehow more intimate, affectionate than schlepping through a mall looking for the perfect "wow" gift.

My brother says that in the midst of all the largess of Christmas, my nephew looks forward most to my annual stocking. He wonders how old he will have to get before I stop making one for him. Silly boy. Never. I will just add one for your wife some day, and then your kids.

Gathering you all close, keeping your smiles in my heart.


Terry said...

Very thoughtful, thanks for the post. T

Creative Bitz said...

Pat I totally agree...while I only have two sons who have not yet chosen wives, one is almost to the proposing stage and one is too young I love shopping for little things for them and also for my sisters in law, sister and brothers in law and can't imagine not trying to find that perfect little gift.