Give Thanks. Another gift where the cell phone is not welcome. When the table is set, and people are about to plunge into their turkey dinner, ask each person to give thanks for just one gift they have been given in the previous year. After each person gives thanks, be sure to let everyone around the table know that their presence in your life makes your life better.
Express Appreciation. Demonstrate your love to those around you in distinctive ways. For example, say, “I appreciate how you dress; I admire your style,” “I appreciate how you never give up but keep fighting!” Showing you care not only elevates the people around you but you as well.
Give Back. It costs nothing to volunteer. Most facilities such as kitchens for the homeless sincerely appreciate it when people volunteer. It is an extremely teachable moment. If you have children or Grandchildren bring them along. Tell them about how fine the line is between good fortune and despair. Between having a large family and abundance to hard times. Teach them that volunteering is a gift that always gives back more than is given.
Be Compassionate. Random acts of kindness are very empowering. They can include shovelling the sidewalk for an elderly person, leaving an anonymous present on the step of someone who is having “a rough time,” saying hello to people you don’t know or purchasing a coffee for someone waiting in the line behind you. The critical part is to do these things without any expectation of reciprocation.
Visit Shut-ins. Want to make a difference in this world? Visit a nursing home or seniors centre with a child, maybe with a present or two, and stop by and say hello to people. Unfortunately, many of our elderly spend many hours alone in nursing homes. The sight of a child fills many people with joy and happiness. The rewards of such visits will fill lonely hearts and fulfill souls who have forgotten that we are all in this cycle of life together.
Bless Others. In many places in our country, wintertime brings cold, often bitter cold weather. Most of us are blessed with abundance. You know that winter jacket, sweater, gloves or scarf that is taking up space? Find a homeless person on the street or go to a shelter and give them the gift. To make it special, have your child go with you to the cleaners, or wash and iron it with love. When you give them the coat, say: “Bless you. I hope next year will be better for you.” In turn, you will be blessed.
For many, the Christmas season can be a very stressful time of rushing around trying to find and afford the perfect gifts for family and friends. Here are seven gifts that are suitable for children of any age, and I guarantee they will beat the best holiday deals you can find in stores. The best part? These gifts are free and given in a good way they will far outlast any store-bought gift.