In spite of the fact that I have successfully completed my holiday shopping, wrapping, and shipping, I can’t help but see the endless ads and promotions for those who are still buying gifts. Consequently, I offer this set of thoughts that I assembled as I was falling asleep.

Many of us make the mistake of buying gifts for others that we would enjoy, rather than those that would be valued by the recipient(s). Beyond that, I have always tried to come up with the “perfect” present and concluded that it simply doesn’t exist.

My favorite method of celebrating an occasion is to give something that the person involved would never buy for himself or herself, either because it wouldn’t come to mind or it seemed frivolous. For example, if a wine-lover is in your closest circle of friends, buy a wine that is different, exotic, or extravagant. If you know that someone near you loves chocolates, find the best and finest and make those your gift. The downside of those two options is that they are both consumed; the memories will linger for much longer, I believe.

Along those same lines, someone with a very busy schedule and numerous responsibilities will appreciate a gift of housecleaning or gift certificate for a grocery home delivery. And if you think that a cash gift certificate would make a difference in someone’s life, that works too.

If you are in any way inclined to write, use that gift to create something uniquely yours. It doesn’t need to be a Pulitzer prize type of gift – it can simply be how you feel about the recipient and what he or she means to your life. There is no “perfect” present other than to express heartfelt feelings and kindness. Tell someone you care, on this holiday season and beyond. No-one could ask or expect more. Shalom.

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