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When I was younger, it was all about the grand gestures. As a child, there’s nothing quite like receiving a gift of the latest toy or a new bike. Even as a teenager and young adult, I was swept off my feet when boyfriends spent a fortune on me.
I’m not sure when it happened, but these days the little things mean so much more. That’s not to say that grand gestures are any less appreciated. But I can’t help feeling that those are the times when a material object makes me happy rather than the joy of receiving it. After all, I work hard to earn money to buy the things I want, but you can’t buy love.
I adore sending little gifts to people on special occasions like birthdays to let them know I’m thinking of them. Especially when it’s somebody who wouldn’t expect anything from me, or someone I don’t see often. Because I know that special smile will sweep across their face when they realise I remembered.
It’s those gifts that mean the most to me now. A little surprise from a good friend I don’t see often, a handmade card that the children have created at school. Even the knowledge that they went shopping with their dad and chose something for me.
I love the fact they choose my Mother’s Day flowers themselves. I don’t want a huge bouquet and they’re too young to spend their own money on it. But the fact that they’ve taken the time to look through all the flowers, discuss which ones they love and choose them for me is so heart-warming.
Just because they were thinking about me
These days, little random gifts are often the ones that bring me the most joy. A pebble the children found on the beach, a feather that fluttered past when they weren’t with me. A paper creation with too much glitter on that gets stuck in my finger nails when I touch it.
Or a friend who drops by with brownies when they know I’m having a difficult time. Occasionally my husband comes home with a little gift for me. Not because we’ve had a row or he’s forgotten my birthday. Just because I was on his mind. That’s what families are all about – and that is why the little things really do mean the most.