Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Three Gifts For Christmas

Those of you who know my dear friend Katie (Wilson) Hughes, you know how ABSOLUTELY AMAZING she is.  Many of you have heard me talk about her and her spectacular talents. Besides being able to give Martha Stewart a run for her money in the craft, cooking and creativity area, she is also the owner of Artichoke Ink and Co-Owner of Vintage Rose Wraps.  I am constantly amazed by Katie and feel blessed to call her my friend.  I'm always hoping that more and more of her will rub off on me.

Her blog is private, so I can't link back to the post she wrote about the idea of three gifts for Christmas.  So with her permission I share with you her original blog post.  Her words are in black.

I've had several friends ask about our tradition of giving 3 gifts for Christmas, so I thought I would go ahead and post it here for any of you who want to give it a try. First, I wish I could take credit for the idea because it has been so, so neat for our family. Someone shared it about someone they knew at a small Enrichment meeting I attended about 10 years ago. If I ever find out about who started this thing, I would love to meet her!

I remember a story being told about a mother of eight children who was measuring out her piles for her children on Christmas Eve. She noticed one child's pile was far less than the others. Though the mother had bought the boy exactly the gift he wanted, she wanted to make sure that his pile didn't look so minimal compared to the other children. So she ran out to a store that evening and bought him a few more frivolous things to fill his pile. Well, Christmas morning came and went, and later the boy was found only playing with the one toy he had asked for. This mother, realizing that the other gifts were unnecessary, recognized a need to change the way she did Christmas in her family. So, she did what any good mother would do. She studied up, researched material, and prayed. She came up with the idea of giving three gifts at Christmas, reminiscent of the gifts of the three wise men. This would keep things focused and in-tune with the spirit of the season. Here's the idea of the gifts:
"The Gift of Wonder"
{wrapped with gold}

These are gifts that tickle and delight. They are the gifts that are really wanted or desired--The gift that the receiver just can't go without! A wanted toy, a planned outing, a season pass… something they just HAVE to have.
"The Gift of Meaning"{wrapped with red}

These are gifts that have meaning and express affection. These might include: a scrapbook, a quilt, a special doll, an heirloom, a childhood memento, a CTR ring or piece of jewelry, new temple clothes, a treasure box, a framed photograph, or letters from the heart. This gift is extremely worthwhile and something that shows love.
"The Gift of Usefulness"
{wrapped with green}

These are gifts that are truly needed. Look at your loved one's needs and choose a gift that would be truly useful. These might include a new coat, a down comforter, or a new pair of shoes and socks. Use this gift for something practical yet worthwhile.

Bill and I started this tradition the first year we were married, and I have to say it has helped our Christmases stay focused. It's difficult to just give three gifts. Some years we have to sort of give package deals, but we do our best to keep it to three. What it does, however, is make us be really thoughtful about what we give. It's so easy to just go out and buy some stuff because you want someone in your family to have it, when it's not really what they want or need. This sets some parameters and it sure makes shopping a whole lot easier.

In our family, Santa still brings gifts as well, (1 large gift and 2 small gifts) so the tradition of Santa can be preserved.

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I am full time wife and Mom. Jasper is my busy 3 year old who keeps us on our toes. I like to sew and craft and make our house a home. I love to be outside and play with my boys.