Tuesday, November 27, 2012

The Best Gift

Once again we find ourselves at the start of the gifting season. This year we had the opportunity to not only purchase great bargains on "Black Friday," but today's economy forces retailers to try new methods to attract consumers to make purchases. Thus we were enticed to start even earlier as some merchants geared up on Thanksgiving evening. Perhaps that was the start of a new shopping day: "Gray Thursday"?

But no matter when the stores open, we are still faced with the dilemma that has faced gift-givers down through the ages: how can one provide the best gift ever? Even though we are bombarded by TV commercials, and our mailboxes overflow with circulars and flyers -- all proclaiming the desirability of their featured products -- we still must make the final determination: what can I give to express my love and still provide something that is tasteful, practical, enduring and appreciated?

Gifting is challenging.

As you look over this year's list of recipients, you may find there are some on it that are easy. For example, there's the college-aged son who can use anything and everything, especially cash. There's the daughter who has her heart set on the latest electronic gadget all her friends have. There may be the thoughtful wife who puts her list on your dresser -- complete with stores and SKU numbers. If only all would be so easy.

But what about parents, friends, children and others you wish to give a special present to, yet you have no idea what would be the best gift?

Perhaps it would be wise to review the best gifts you have ever been given as a starting point. For example, one of the best gifts I ever received was two seats to a Yankee's game -- one for me and one for my dad. We spent an awesome day together. Another special gift I treasure was a shotgun from my wife, along with arrangements for a hunting trip with my friends. Each of these gifts involved more than an item received, it also included a built-in time with another person.

So when it comes down to it, perhaps the very best gift you can give those you love would be a way to share more than a carefully wrapped "thing." Try sharing something that includes giving yourself too.

Happy gift giving!

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