America is known for its excess, and no other time is it more obvious than during the holidays. We're slammed with ads for Star Wars toys, Chi pets, dozens of style choices in boots, sweaters, jewelry, and cars, domestic and foreign.
Sit down and make a list of the gifts you received and gave to your beloved over the last 5 years. Some may be able to remember what you got and gave last year, but I bet you'll not remember much more than a year or two back. Never mind that the gifts probably cost a great deal of time and money.
I have a better idea this year. Consider giving your family/friends the gift of story... specifically the story of a Christmas past filled with memories you made with your beloved(s). My OWL (Older Women's Legacy) writers did that this year and shared them with each other at our annual holiday luncheon at Beverly Barissi's home before mailing them. The stories were printed on holiday-themed paper that you can get at a stationery store or online.
The stories were simple and heart-warming. Stories about sleighing downhill on snow-packed hills back East, about Grandmother's gingerbread cookies, about baby Jesus and Midnight Mass, about Christmas tamales, about heirloom and homemade decorations, about military brothers and sister coming home for the holidays, about the love and fellowship.
Sit quietly and let your mind wander to the holidays of your youth and the traditions you embraced. What sounds, sights, and aromas do you recall? What did the Christmas of past feel like? what did it taste like? As these memories drift through your mind, let one experience grow in focus. Concentrate on the details, the joy, and let your senses flood through your pen or computer keyboard.
When you are finished, print your story on holiday paper... and share so others may re-live the memory as well. Merry, merry memories to all my friends and family!