For the past few years I have been maintaining a list of gifts I purchase for friends and family throughout the year. Included in the list is a description of the gift, the store where it was purchased, the cost of the item, and at times extra notes like what the receiver said as he or she opened the item.
I started the list one Christmas night when I found it difficult to remember all the gifts that I had given. Somehow the weeks of preparation for Christmas, including searching for the perfect gift passed by in the blink of an eye on Christmas day. I started the list in an effort to reflect more deeply on the Christmas experience.
Around this time I also created a list of the items I received each Christmas. So many gifts are exchanged on Christmas day that I found it difficult to remember what I’d been given. So I started writing down a description of the gift and who purchased it. Maintaining the list helps me reflect on the love of those who gave each item.
This year as I compiled my Christmas lists I also took note of special moments that occurred on Christmas day. For example, the fact that my niece can suddenly speak in three and four word sentences when she could only say a few words on Thanksgiving day. Or that my three year old nephew grabbed my mother’s hand at grace and asked the rest of us to join our hands together too.
As we live the moments of our lives it’s often difficult to recognize life’s blessings. Taking the time to reflect on these moments ensures I find thanks in each year’s good tidings.