A Sentiment

God knew what He was doing when He sent a gentle breeze and brought a lovely butterfly to set my heart at ease. The happiness of your friendship and the gentleness of your words have touched my life in special ways and now I feel assured. Thank you for your loyalty and for reading everyday. I only hope you find things to make a happy day.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Christmas Giving

Traditions of Christmas Gifts.
Gift giving happened in Bethlehem, when the baby Jesus was presented gifts from afar.
We also see Christmas presents being given far back in history. In ancient Rome, during feasts , it was tradition for the high-ranking officials to give gifts to the Roman Emperor. This wasn’t technically a Christian holiday (it was actually pagan) but it does coincide with the time of year and the gift-giving tradition.
A person who jump-started the gift-giving traditions at Christmas was good old Saint Nicholas. He was known for giving gifts. Remember Dutch wooden shoes filled with gifts. How about coal in stockings?

Christmas presents as we know them today actually started in America. It’s been a longtime tradition to give little gifts to friends and family, but the massive giving that goes on nowadays is a creation all our own.
In the early 1800s stores and companies started advertising Christmas gifts. By the 1840s, the tradition of lavish giving was fully ingrained into American society.
Giving gifts to those we love is in sync with the true spirit of Christmas. So let the Christmas presents roll - it’s a wonderful time of year.

We still love to give and receive presents. I start shopping early in the year. We spend a certain amount on each kid and really try to find something that they will use. In the past, I exchanged gifts with friends. This is the year that the tradition stopped. We are getting older and thought it was time to stop doing this. Different clubs and organizations have a grab gift or a white elephant exchange...that's fun. Some clubs have started bringing gifts for charity instead. Neighbors give us gifts of cookies and other treats. We give our little neighbor boy and girl a little gift. Usually a candy treat or cookies. Our dog gets gifts too. Some of our relatives really go all out and buy Laddie lots of toys. He does his Laddie dance. We give our Priest a gift...usually something that we have made together. This year, as in the past, I am giving some watercolor paintings. I hope that people will like them and not feel that they have to display them. I enjoy doing it...it keeps me busy LOL Then we come to the really important gifts...in our family, a year of harmony and love, to those less fortunate than we are...money and food. We have charities that we support every year and our Church food barrel gets filled. We give to these charities and we no sooner send the check...they are asking for more. Sometimes it is annoying, but when you see all the starving people that they help...you just realize that you have done your part and can do no more. This will be a particularly bad year, so I understand their appeal for more. The toys for tots program is in dire need of toys for kids. I would hope that everyone, who can spare a few dollars, would give just one toy, to make a child smile on Christmas morning and know that he or she wasn't forgotten.



Yolanda said...

Welcome to blogging. You will find many friends here including me. I hope to visit often and I hope you will stop by.

Balisha said...

Thankyou, Yolanda.
Thanks for reading.I first started this blog for myself, but now I find that I look forward to comments and enjoy reading others. I'll have to check your blog out.

coolwaterworks said...

Hi Balisha,

Yes, we still love to give and receive presents... :)

Just yesterday I received 2 Christmas cards: one from my bestfriend there in the U.S. and from the kid I'm sponsoring to school thru World Vision. I seldom receive presents during Christmas and so the cards really made my day...

Merry Christmas and Advance Happy New Year!

Balisha said...

Hi Mark,
I wish you and yours a Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. Thanks for reading and all your comments. I first started blogging to keep a journal for myself, but since then I have "met" through my "journal" so many nice people, and I have found that I really appreciate their comments.