Give "Timely" Gifts

by Nancy Twigg

In today's hustle and bustle world, our time is almost more precious to us than our money. Like money, there never seems to be enough of it to go around. But unlike money that can be replaced if stolen or squandered, lost time is gone forever.

That's why it is so meaningful when you give someone the gift of your time. First, it shows that you care enough to sacrifice one of your most valuable commodities. Many people would much rather give up some of their money than to sacrifice some of their precious free time

Additionally, it takes creativity to come up with a "timely" gift the recipient will appreciate. Unlike store-bought presents, gifts that involve your time are not duplicable. Giving "timely" gifts also shows your practicality and sensitivity to the person's needs.

For those who have more extra time than extra cash, giving "timely" gifts is a great way to show you care without overspending. Here are some points to ponder as you come up with a "timely" gift ideas for people you know:

  • Is there a time-consuming task I could offer to do that would give him/her a welcomed break? How much fun is doing laundry, cleaning the house, or cutting the grass? Who wouldn't love a break from these mundane but necessary tasks?
  • Is there a service he or she usually pays for that I could offer to perform as a gift? Help him or her save money by offering to give her a permanent, clean the carpets, or change his oil as your gift.
  • Is there something he or she needs to do but cannot do alone? Offer to help out with a task that seems too big for one person. Examples might be cleaning out the garage, landscaping or hanging wallpaper.
  • Is there a way to combine my time and my talent to create a meaningful gift? Here's just one example. Are you a great cook? Cook up a special meal and then bring it to the recipients' house. Set the table, light the candles and then vamoose so they can enjoy a candlelit dinner for two.
  • Will the special occasion bring with it some special needs that I could meet? Take for example the birth of a baby. Why not offer to keep the couple's other children during the delivery? Or how about cooking and freezing a week's worth of meals so the family can eat well while the new mom is recovering?<
  • Would this person enjoy a block of uninterrupted, personalized attention? If the recipient doesn't drive, take her out for lunch and an afternoon of window-shopping. For a child, offer to take him out for a picnic and an afternoon in the park.

Nancy Twigg is a Christian speaker and the author of Celebrate Simply: Your Guide to Simpler, More Meaningful Holidays and Special Occasions

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