Friday, January 20, 2012

The Ilities

Birthdays, holidays and all of those others days of remembrance. Dates that can be difficult for those on a fixed income, a low income. Dates that cause most to wonder what we can give. But we are creative creatures. There are ways to make the most of what we have to give to others. A little imagination and can be a gift beyond words.

When my granddaughters come to visit, we often do crafts. My favorite are their paintings. Of course, I have some of their very first pictures packed away in a box of treasures. What parent wouldn't love a framed picture? One they didn't know existed. Gathering a few frames for almost nothing at garage sales and Goodwill will always come in handy. Again, a framed handprint is a gift beyond words. A photo of fingers and toes.

Finding a planter at those same places can be made into a wonderful gift. An old clay pot with paintings by a child or even by you with a starter plant is a gift every woman appreciates. Travel sizes packed into a 'new' basket, an emergency box starter with a box of bandaids and other things under $2.00.  A photo album from a discount store filled with pictures from the past, a letter of love written by your hand, a box of little pieces of paper on which a memory is written to be opened every day. There are so many things we can do by simply giving from our hearts and our creativity.

For Christmas two years ago, I gave my children copies of my mother's farm recipes. They were thrilled. A small flashlight for a child. A creative kit of Play Doh, paints, markers and crayons. My kids always loved the little notebook hole reinforcements. They can be made as part of fun drawings. Let your imagination flow.

It's not just the gifts we give. It is mostly the time and attention we share. A planned potluck picnic at a new location for all the family. A special tea for the grandchildren perhaps allowing them to invite a friend. Of course, they need to make the cookies to go with it. A special meal planned by the kids for their parents and cooked by their loving hands. A hike, a nature walk, a visit to a museum or state park. Bits and pieces of ourselves are worth more than anything money can buy. We are not with means. We have the sky, the earth and our own ingenuity.

I could go on and on with these ideas, but I think it is important for everyone find what works for them. We all have 'ilities'. There is no end to the possibilities and abilities.  What a fantastic gift to pass on to our children and grandchildren. The gift of ourselves.


  1. It is so true that what our loved ones remember most are the times we give of ourselves. Anyone can give a store bought gift, only a grandmother can pass along the grandchild's family legacy and stories.

  2. Anything made by hand that comes from the heart is more valuable than anything you could ever buy at the store, regardless of whose hands made it -- big or little.