Someone recently asked me, "What is the best gift you've ever received?" MY FAMILY, of course! If I had to choose something besides my family?
My first instinct was to say a Global chef's knife that Dave, my husband, gifted to me early on in our relationship when I thought I wanted to be a professional chef and was working as a prep cook in a fine dining restaurant. That dream didn't last for too long :) I really value that gift though because having a good chef's knife in the kitchen seriously makes all the difference in your cooking skills.
But then I remembered two really sweet gifts that my parents gave me. These might just take the cake.
When I was in high school, my dad gave me and my three siblings a book called, The Simple Truths by Kent Nerburn. The book reflects on important aspects of life like marriage, love, money, parenthood, and work, to name a few. Along with the book, my dad typed out his own personal reflections on what each chapter meant to him. It was a particularly meaningful gift because it was the first Christmas after my parents had separated and we were all still coping with the reality that our family was no longer "together" anymore. This book (and my dad's notes) helped soften the blow a bit. I still look at them often if I need a little extra help navigating certain challenges in my life.
And last Christmas, my mom gave me and my three siblings a beautiful homemade cookbook of all of our family recipes. Along with the recipes, my mom--who is an amazing and talented artist--painted a different painting for each chapter of the cookbook. How sweet is that?! My siblings and I are now well equipped to keep family traditions--like my great-grandmother Clara's homemade raviolis and my grandfather Bill's egg nog recipe--alive at Christmas time. Family, holidays, traditions, yummy food...what's better than that?
P.S. What is the best gift that you have ever received? I would love to hear...email me at firstname.lastname@example.org and let me know!