One of my favourite magazines sends out weekly emails of stories they are featuring.
This one, about celebrating birthdays in simple and meaningful ways arrived in my inbox today. It's timely as our family heads into birthday season and I am listening closely to my kids real wishes and trying to drown out the idea that birthdays need to be equated with "buy, buy buy". My friend Emma has a gift for creating special celebrations for her family birthdays,with hand madegifts and beautiful gestures.
I remember one year when he was about 4 Colin wanted a rainbow and a hug for Christmas. Santa obliged with a rainbow playsilk from the Waldorf school store, and a beautiful book about hugs. He could not have been happier.
Even among mindful parents I know we can use the reminder that what children need is for us to buy less and be with them more.
What is a birthday? It is an opportunity to celebrate the life and the development of a person. Do my children need to see a table covered with a pile of wrapped toys in order to know that their family and friends are delighted and honored that they share this lifetime with us? Somewhere in our consumer culture, we have confused “presents,” material items, with expressions of love and gratitude.