Gifts of love

The frenzy of buying, wrapping and even opening gifts often outweighs the actual gifts received.

Some gifts are truly fun to give (like the calendar I made my mother-in-law or the night-vision goggles we gave to my 12-year-old nephew) but sometimes, the act of giving is just a lot of work that plays out in a matter of seconds on Christmas Day.

I received a lot of lovely — some extravagant — gifts for my birthday and Christmas this year. I’m still enjoying fresh pears packaged so perfectly, they’re like opening a gift each morning. I was proud to use my shiny new flatware for my guests on Christmas Day. I’m writing this post wearing a comfy new running outfit. And I will enjoy all kinds of interesting wines and wine accessories in the weeks to come, all while thinking of the friends who thought of me.

And while I loathe ranking them at all, I will especially treasure two of the gifts I received this year.

I know that even “real” mothers don’t always receive gifts from their children, but I know, too, that stepmoms often are not the highest priority on a child’s gift-giving list, so to receive anything at all is a gift. Of course, ’tis better to give than receive, so even if I got nothing for Christmas, I could relish in my own generosity. But I feel extra special this year.

My stepdaughter gave some careful thought to my interests and hobbies and found this Star Trek Enterprise model that is actually a fabulous pizza cutter. It’s a brilliant gift for a Trekker.

My stepson is taking a ceramics class this semester, and I got this beautiful piece of pottery he made. It’s a perfectly thrown bowl.

It’s extra special because it makes me think of my brother, too, who made a pitcher for my parents one year, one they still use as a serving piece.

All these lovely gifts were the backdrop to a perfectly wonderful Christmas Day when we entertained nearly a dozen people with a perfectly grilled roast and lots of good company.

It was a good Christmas. How was yours?

One response to “Gifts of love

  1. Christmas was good. I was welcomed with open arms by my boyfriend’s family as one of the brood. We have been together for 3 years but it was my first Christmas away from home in a strange land (okay, not that strange, it was Canada), and wrapped up in all of the holiday chaos that his family revels in. More than any gifts that I received, I built new memories that I will cherish.

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