In 1996 I worked for a local newspaper in Alberta and wrote the article, ‘Christmas Buying: with a Green Conscience’. I thought it was almost perfect for this time of year to share. Twenty years ago I suggested many green gifts and encouraged readers to make conscience decisions when choosing a gift. Today I feel much the same but instead of giving an item I believe a gift certificate for an experience is the better choice with all we know today about excess stuff.
Because I am privileged to work in so many homes, I see the years of gifts that clients have received. Some are on display but sadly much more sit in storage or collecting dust in corners. Gifts that were given with love but the recipient maybe never needed it and was now storing it, moving it from home to home and not able to get rid of it because they are wrongly making the gift the person.
I learned a very important….life changing actually….lesson a few years ago. A good friend came to visit me and I pointed to the gift she had given me 10 years prior for my wedding. I told her that I have moved that gift through many homes and every time I look at it I think of her. She stood there in wonder and said she couldn’t remember giving it to me. Which was fine….I get it, well I get it now because after that moment I tried to think about the gifts I have given over the years and I couldn’t remember many at all. Then I had the light bulb moment….”so sometimes we keep things that someone gave us thinking that it would be wrong to get rid of it but they can’t remember they gave it to us” Hmmmm….so I want to tell everyone that I have ever gifted right now that if you don’t want or can’t use the gift I gave you then please donate it or give it to someone who wants it. I want to remembered for who I am not the gift I gave you and you are only keeping it out of guilt…thinking it will hurt me if you give it away. And going forward when I choose to give a gift I plan to give a gift that will create an experience, a memory not one that can collect dust.