The holidays seem to offer two states of mind. The responsibility of shopping. The warmth of a gift.

And oddly one usually comes out of the other. But why so much responsibility. Why not more warmth and cheer. And yet the list goes on and on, seeming to grow longer every year. So many nieces and nephews and co-workers and catalogues. And my kids just keep adding so much to their lists. And what on earth could your mother want that she hasn't already bought for herself? How should I know what my dad might like...

And so many questions leave me so insecure. It's too hard and maybe even silly buying so much for others who've already bought so much for themselves.

And then I think of those who lack. Kids going to bed hungry. Parents stressed for their pain. Refugees fleeing terror only to learn they've brought it along.

And maybe this year doesn't have to be about buying. Maybe it's simpler. Maybe it's just a bit of time. Perhaps instead of time at the mall, it's time over coffee. It's time on the phone. Who do I care for and how can I show it. Could it be this simple; should I give it a try?

And you're lucky to already have so much wisdom inside. You know friends and relatives like the back of your hand. And the gifts you can't wrap could become the most valued. For when you let life slow and truly sit in the Present with another, you both become the Gift.