This is about the point in November when Christmas starts to sneak in. Issa's favorite radio station has switched to all Christmas all the time. Lights are starting to appear around us; the Christmas house is fully decorated. And yesterday we did our first gifts of Christmas.
Since Issa was in first grade, our first gifts are always for the Angel Tree at school. Tuesday, the kids were so excited to choose their ornaments. Evan chose a bow and arrow toy for a boy his age. Issa chose skinny jeans for a girl her age. I chose two of the socks and underwear ornaments for Brad and I--both for kids our kids' ages; they just seemed like good Mom and Dad choices. We chose the gifts yesterday, and Issa and I wrapped them up last night while Frosty played on the television.
We use the Angel Tree to have a conversation about gratitude. About how blessed we are, and how since we have a little extra we choose ornaments. We talk about those who need are the bravest as they ask for help. And we talk about how for those who have just enough it's a time to remember how blessed they are and to see a little extra good in the world. And that's the real first gift.