I remember every year I would be utterly bitter at the dearth of presents in our household during Christmas time. While my friends at school would get completely showered in a massive butt-load of presents such as: large presents like a Hot Wheels race track, a Barbie Dream House, an EZ Bake oven, then medium presents like Cabbage Patch Dolls, Teddy Ruxbin, the Girl Talk game etc and then to top it off a million little stocking stuffers like lip gloss, fake nails and the list goes on. Here are a few pics of presents I really wanted for Christmas growing up (WARNING: This will make you feel old, proceed with caution and captions are all mine):
My brother and I would get maybe 1-3 presents max at Christmas. They were never from our parents but were from our relatives. Every year 3 families would get together on my mom's side. So when present time came around, each family would get one present for each child. Sometimes, to my indignation, all adults would conspire to just "not do the present thing" that year so then there would no presents.
Though the no-present-thing got me mad, every year when I was young, Christmas was a magical time. On Christmas day I would wake up knowing we would go to church, exchange gifts with all our friends, have service, and then we would go to my aunt's house, be reunited with my cousins that I haven't seen in awhile, eat yummy food and we would have a great time. Then after dinner, we would sit around and read the Christmas story from the gospel of Matthew. Though there was a dearth in presents, we were brimming with gifts. Looking back surprisingly I'm glad my parents didn't indulge in the whole consumerism aspect of the holiday but geared our focus to the true meaning of Christmas.
Now that my son is almost four he is fully aware of all the Christmas stuff like presents and Santa Claus. My husband and I did buy our kids a few great presents, we certainly want to remind them and gear their focus on the true gifts in their lives: The love of family, friends, community and celebrating the birth of Jesus.
What are some of the gifts in your life?