Last autumn I crocheted my father a scarf, just because ... because the yarn color perfectly matched his eyes, because he asked for a scarf after seeing my husband's, because handmade gifts give me the chance to slow down and appreciate the person who'll receive the present while I'm working on it.
While gift-giving can be tricky, especially in a time crunch, I think it boils down to three basic components:
- Knowing a person's preferences and personality
- Compiling the time and resources to prepare/purchase the gift
- Actually following through
Confession: I find the last part the hardest. This year alone I've missed the opportunity to send a humorous get well package, to buy a bouquet for a friend going through a hard time, and needed a reminder about another scarf I'd forgotten I'd promised to make!
I picked up some hydrangeas at the local farm market before the first road trip of 2011 this past weekend (more on this next time). Giving my mother potted perennial flowers for Easter became a tradition over the years since the holiday celebrates resurrection. Each spring Mom keeps me updated on the daffodils and hyacinths of previous years; we look forward to the sprouting, budding, and blooming of these plants as Easter nears. Perhaps tulips for next year.
What's your take on gift-giving? Purchase, make, or avoid?