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No Reason To Wait

As winter approaches, all of us start thinking about the holidays. How can we help it? We are struck daily by a marketing blizzard. Luckily, this time of year doesn’t stress me out too much. My parents were never much the holiday hubbub since my mom comes from a culture that doesn’t celebrate cold-weather holidays and my father in unequivocally counter culture. That doesn’t mean, however, that my family isn’t into togetherness and gift-giving.

Dad always told us, “Why should I wait for a holiday to give you something that I know you’ll love?” One year, he did wait. It was the only time my dad ever gave us Christmas presents and they rocked. He had spent months secretly perfecting the sound of his handmade wooden Aztec Drum. That was a shared gift for all of us kids, and he wrapped it in an old burlap rice sack with a bow. Nice touch, Dad. He gave my brother a badminton set to put up when the snow melted, so we could all play together in the backyard. Next summer, our Taiwanese cousin taught us some racquet skills she’d picked up as a collegiate badminton player. There were endless hours of friendly sibling competition. The final memorable gift was a pair of quality craft scissors, which I still use to this day, whenever my friend Colin hosts his semi-regular collage’n’cocktail parties during the bleak winter evenings.

My mom on the other hand, is much more practical. She tends to give gifts like money help pay your car insurance or a ticket home to see your mother. This year, she’s giving me an early holiday helping hand. I’m having surgery on my knee this week and she’ll be here to lend a hand while mine are holding onto crutches. With her help, I’ll be walking by December and prepped to fly home for the holidays to help my dad in the workshop and tour Seattle with my brothers. That’s something she could never have bought me at Wal-Mart. And the thought of asking Santa Claus to tend to my wounds or make me a sandwich seems a little silly.

Tags: Family traditions, Gifts, Holidays

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