Wednesday, December 26, 2007

Focus on the beauty of the dream

Don't get lost in the details. Wow... those are really great words. Channeled through Yaz... AKA my mom Judi Garcia. I am spending a lot of time focusing on the beauty of my dreams. It is very easy to get lost in the details. Take Christmas for example. Every year I spend about $1,000 on gifts for my family. Buying everyone more things they really don't need. This year, I decided to make gifts for my parents and siblings, and to buy meaningful but inexpensive gifts for the kids. I found some classic first edition books for Megan, along with an original Life Magazine add of the Peter Pan movie from the 1950's at a yard sale. Kayleigh got 6 slightly used Bratz dolls all boxed up with the accessories, and some cool repurposed ornaments I made for a boutique. Zack got a photo collage of classic sports cars from the 1930's, and some boy's model car collection that he had lost interest in. Austin got one of those hair tingler things made of copper wire, and a disco ball for his room. They were all thrilled with these gifts, and all total I spend $200 on everyone. Now the really cool part... We also celebrate Spanish Christmas, January 6th when the wise men brought gifts to Baby Jesus... So now we can shop the after Christmas sales for candy and much needed clothes and get another big haul of stuff for a lot less. I have tried to teach my kids that stuff doesn't make you happy. Luckily, they are all fine with repurposed and used gifts, and appreciate them just as much as a new electronic toy that costs 10 times as much. Using sound judgement to spend their money wisely on things they really want has become a habit with them now. I am proud of them. Next year we plan on adopting a family in need. I think it is important for them to learn the gift of giving... They also learn to value the more expensive things because they take longer to get and they have to save and earn the money for them. Those I pods are much more cherished when purchased with their own hard earned cash.

As I look back on this last year... I see a lot of loss. But I see growth too. The loss was necessary to bring us to where we are now. I am holding tight to my dreams... keeping my eyes focused on the prize... the details will work themselves out... I am trusting spirit to guide me down the right paths this year. I am excited, and full of hope again. Spending 3 days in bed with the flu has helped me relax and take care of myself. I am ready for what the New Year holds... I can hardly wait!

1 comment:

Angie in AZ said...

Sounds like a wonderful Christmas! I also have young kids and am struggling to teach them about giving to others. This year, we practically lived at the dollar store buying things to pack gift bags for the homeless. I found fleece blankets on sale at my local grocery store for $3.00 each too! My son decorated the bags, I wrote a special Christmas prayer and printed it and then we packed bags with snacks, toiletries, hats, socks, blankets, reading materials, etc.. and then drove around passing them out to homeless people near our home! It was so fun and rewarding to see their faces and watch them digging in the bags putting socks on before I even had time to drive off! What a thrill! THIS is what Christmas is about! The homeless pulled at my heart this year as I realized the Jesus, too, was homeless for the last few years of his life while he traveled around ministering so I'm sure these "insignificant" people sleeping on the street have a special place in His heart. We also sorta' adopted a friends family and donated money, along with some others, to pay their house payment and buy gifts for the family since the husband has not found work since April. That was really fun too. I love your idea of scaling down on family gifts and plan to do more of that next year in my own family as well. Thanks for sharing!