Hollison Journey

“The road of life twists and turns and no two directions are ever the same. Yet our lessons come from the journey, not the destination.” – Don Williams Jr


on August 18, 2008

One of the things we do at Toastmasters is table topics. Three topics or questions are given to three different people for improv speeches of 1-2 minutes. Even if I am not called on to answer, I can’t help but answer them in my head.

At our last meeting one of the topics/questions was to talk about the best gift you have received or given. I don’t know what the best gift I’ve given is. I would suspect that gifts that I barely remember mean more to the people I give it to than I think. Or maybe they don’t.

I have received a lot of great gifts. Some, I’m sure, I have not even understood how great they are. One gift stands out though. Well, three actually. Not only are the gifts meaningful and thoughtful, but their presentation was flawless. As much as I like material gifts, elaborate setups make them all the more special.

When I was confirmed into the Catholic Church, I received several gifts from friends. All very special, all very nice. After vigil, we had a party at Joe’s that lasted into the wee hours of the morning. As I left the apartment at 5am, Joe told me that he had a gift for me but he would give it to me later.

A few weeks later, Joe and I were going to go out to dinner. I met him at the Student Center. I was waiting for him to finish up what he was working on and he told me that he had my gift. I had to wait in the office we were in and he would go get it. He came back with a gift bag. Inside was a card and a small cross. The card was all about my first reconciliation.

After I thanked him, he said “oh wait, what is in the hallway?” and brought in another bag. This one had a card about first communion, a white communion rosary and a cross with a young girl praying. As Joe explained, it’s a cross given usually to kids when they have first communion, but I didn’t receive it when I was a young girl.

The final bag included a red holy spirit rosary and a card for confirmation. The card was blank inside, but a letter was included.

Three sacraments, three presents. Not only do these gifts evoke memories of the moment, but the care and thought put into them made them all the more special.

What gifts, given and/or received, stand out in your mind as memorable?


One response to “Gifts

  1. Amanda says:

    I’m not writing this just because you gave them to me; promise. 🙂

    It’s been very touching to me when you’ve come across random books and bought them for me, knowing how they will interest me and aide my book writing. You’re the only person who has ever done that, and it’s meant a lot to me. So, in a public forum, thank you for being so thoughtful and so completely what I think of whenever I think of you. You’re one of the most giving people I know. Love you, friend!

    My other favorite gift is also books (big shocker). Jimmy bought me leather bound editions of “The Hobbit” and “The Lord of the Rings” for Christmas a few years back. It was completely unexpected, and I was, naturally, thrilled to bits.

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