My niece just turned 5 years old last week.  She is so cute.  As friends and family arrived at her house for her birthday, she informed them that it was her birthday (somehow we didn't know, I guess).  She also asked if her voice sounded "older", which we all agreed it did. 

I saw her opening her gifts, being very happy as she looked through her toys, clothes, jewelry - all the things a little one gets when we celebrate the life and birthday of a child. 

As we get older, we don't always celebrate birthdays in such grand style.  Usually we do dinner and gifts but not as many balloons, friends, games - all the stuff we usually do when growing up.  Our lives are too busy and usually we feel like "Oh well, I'm getting older.  It's just another day."

I started to think about the gifts that we give for special occasions.  Those also change as we get older.  Presents sometimes can be practical or useful, not as playful as they used to be.

Then I wondered - are there gifts that we can give to each other every day - even if it's not our birthday? 

There are lots of gifts we can give people that do not cost a thing.  Here are some ideas:

A gift of love to let them know they are special.

A gift of time to let them know how much we care.

A gift of our shoulder to cry on when they need support.

A gift of happiness and giggles to provide a laugh when it gets too serious.

A gift of compassion to help them figure out a situation.

A gift of a smile, because it can be catchy.

A gift of knowledge to help them find their way.

A gift of understanding when they are struggling to express their feelings.

A gift of a hug (or many) to provide warmth and comfort.

A gift of yourself - you are a gift to others too!

Do you have other ideas you can offer?  Think about a few that you could give to friends or family in your life.  These gifts really are priceless.

So remember, when it is a special time, it's always wonderful to give a gift.  However, you have gifts you can give freely (and that are free) every day.  Often them to all who come into your path!

~Copyright 2010, Spiritualitygirl (Mary D'Alba)~