When I was about sixteen, I realized how fun it was to give good gifts. I would pay attention to little things throughout the year and then when a friends birthday rolled around, I would have come up with the perfect gift that always resulted in happiness and celebration. I realized how awesome it made me feel to know just what that person wanted.
During college, and during the first year or so after getting married, I wasn’t nearly as good, just because I was spending all my money on tuition and not spending the quality time with my friends that I had in high school.
But since one of my 2009 goals was to be a better friend, and since I felt that gift giving went along with the territory, I decided to jump back on the bandwagon. So at the end of last year, I went through my calendar, my facebook, and blogs, and figured out when everyone’s birthday was. I made a big list and posted on my pantry door so I could check it every so often.
And now I make gifts in advance, or plan gifts in advance. Sometimes they’re generic gifts (I tend to give the same few things at baby showers), and sometimes they’re specific to whose birthday it is, but I always try to make it meaningful to that person and almost always try to keep it homemade. I think it gives it a little something extra. Don’t you?
My best friend growing up is celebrating her birthday on Monday, and I didn’t have to think too hard about what to make her. I had ideas from past birthdays and past projects, and I knew exactly what she would like. All it takes is a little creativity and planning ahead.
It’s made my life easier and makes me feel like a much better friend. And it’s brought back that awesome feeling that I haven’t really felt since I was sixteen.