Holiday Giving and Gift Receipts

Tuesday's Take Time to Care - In my daily life, I focus a ton on nourishing my family's bodies through food. In the past few years, I haven't done as great of a job nourishing my spirit. My hope is that on Tuesdays I can remind myself how to take the time to exercise, do art, connect with a friend, do a good deed for another, or see the world through someone else's eyes.

I called my 'brother' the other night to bug him about another computer question. During our conversation, he told me that he and my B-I-L had found a great book for my daughter for Christmas. The book is a story about a little boy (or maybe it's a dog....I should have paid more attention) who ends up on an adventure in Seattle. Seattle is where they just moved for a job change. 

All that information was to explain that the book is very relevant to my daughter because it shows where her two uncles just moved to and where she'll one day (hopefully sooner than later) go visit. So when the cashier at the book store asked if my 'brother' wanted a receipt, my 'brother' just replied: "No. She won't be returning it."

It's similar to the old parenting expression: "We are going to XXXX's house, and you will have a good time." You see, they'd researched what they wanted to get her, where to go get it, read it in the store to make sure it was as good as they'd hoped, bought it, and will be sending it to her for Christmas. She'd better like it simply because they picked it out and gave it to her!!!!

As a parent (who's horrible at receiving gifts), it's my job to teach my daughter how to gracefully receive gifts. It's one thing to appreciate them. It's another thing to gracefully receive them. I appreciate all the gifts I'm given because someone took the time to give it to me. I don't gracefully receive them because I begin doing a cost-benefit analysis of the gift. I need to teach her how NOT to do that; how to simply love the gift because it's a gift and NOT worry about if it was the best bang for the buck.

Obviously, gift receipts are handy for clothes (wrong sizes to be exchanged) and for devices that might break that need to be covered under a warranty. Otherwise, though, I wonder if gift receipts have actually made the excitement of gift giving and receiving a little less exciting since:
1. the giver doesn't have to be as certain about the gift. "Oh, if she doesn't like it, she can return it with the gift receipt."
2. the receiver is given the opportunity to decide if it's a gift they really want or not.

In some ways, it has the opportunity to make both parties slightly selfish because the giver doesn't have to worry as much about the gift given, and the receiver doesn't have to keep the gift because they want something better/different without worry of the giver.

All this is just food-for-thought. It's a little glimpse into my thoughts about how I can become a better gift receiver, which is something I'm working on this year....again.  

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