Last year I participated in the Advent Calendar of Christmas Memories. It was a special opportunity to recall past Christmas celebrations and my intent was to make it into a book. I didn't get around to it, but will be giving copies to family members this year and asking them to add their own memories. I think this is a great way to collect and pass on family stories. When I converted my website this summer, I didn't include all of the blogs, but thought I'd share one with you this year...it's on Christmas Gifts.
￼ I’ve been trying all day to remember some very special gift I received as a child, and yet nothing stands out. I have warm memories of my childhood Christmases, but they’re a little fuzzy. I remember more about trying to find the perfect gift for the girls. Against all odds, I did get the Cabbage Patch Dolls, and they were a hit that year, but I wonder if I ask them if they would remember any special gift.
My Christmas shopping list was always long, with gifts not only for my husband and children, but for my sisters and sister--in-law and their families, parents, friends and teachers and I always tried to get something special. As the years have gone by, the list has gotten smaller...parents have passed away and we pick names for a single gift for our extended families. The fact is, it’s harder to buy as there is nothing we need. When asked to put together a list of things we might like my list is very short...a book, a subscription to a cooking magazine, or a donation to a charity. A few years ago, instead of buying stocking gifts for our immediate family, the five of us donated what we could afford, and made a donation to Kiva, a microfinance company. We have focused on lending money to women with the intention of alleviating poverty and improving their lives and as each loan is paid back, we select another individual to lend to. Of the eleven loans we’ve made, only one was not fully repaid. This is a the gift that keeps giving!
One of the gifts I will be giving to family this year is the donation of a mosquito net through the NetsforLife program for the prevention of malaria in Africa.
We have been blessed, and the best gift for me at Christmas is just to be with my family.
I felt this was an appropriate blog as there was a Kiva Group started this year called "Genealogists for Families." I hope you'll take a look and participate if you are able.
Best Wishes to you and your family for a Blessed Holiday (whether it be Christmas or some other tradition) and Happy New Year.
I will be researching in Salt Lake City from January 25 - February 1st. If you would like to commission research please let me know.