One of the fondest memories I have from when my children were young was when they would give us a gift they had made. It was often a gift they had made at school – a rock with their picture glued on it, a painted tile, a handprint with a special poem or a decorated plastic placemat.
They were so excited to present these gifts to us. They waited in anticipation as we opened their special gift. It was something they had made themselves with love which made it so meaningful.
Generosity Comes From the Heart
When you receive a gift that someone has made or picked out especially for you, you feel their love within it. Children are particularly good at putting their love into gifts and cards. I treasure the homemade cards my kids have created throughout the years. Their expressions of love contained in these cards are the most valuable gift they’ve given me.
Throughout the world people give gifts to each other as an expression of what’s in their hearts. In her book Living in Gratitude: A Journey That Will Change Your Life, Angeles Arrien discusses generosity.
"Generosity of heart is extended cross-culturally through the practice of giving gifts. Every culture of the world gives gifts as offerings of respect, love, good will, and gratitude. There are no exceptions. December is our month of gift-giving, especially to those we love, to those for whom we feel immense gratitude, and to those who are in need or are suffering. Notice the difference in gift-giving when it is motivated by love, generosity, gratitude, and respect rather than by a sense of obligation to participate in a meaningless ritual."
(read the rest of the article at Priceless Parenting)