With my 50th birthday approaching on 18 November, I’ve had some notes from folks asking what I might like as a gift. This is always a difficult thing for me, so I put some thought into it.
I mean, heck, come to the art show – there, that’s a gift to me.
Be my friends. Love me, love each other, be kind, all those things.
So rather than making a specific list, I thought I’d put some places I love to shop and I’d enjoy having a gift certificate to them. As many of you know, being a disabled poet and funeral celebrant doesn’t leave one wealthy beyond all measure of avarice, so gift certificates are like gold to me. I’m famously careful about using them, but once I get into it, I find it a pretty simply job.
A friend gave me a wonderful gift certificate to Chapters/Indigo last Christmas, and of course their stores are like a toy-filled Christmas dreams for a geeky adult like me. When I needed a new book for my funeral notes and services, it was great to be able to show up, pick the one I love, and buy it without worrying, “Will there be enough in the ol’ account (or overdraft)?” And inside my new book I put, “Bought with a gift certificate from Pat Johnson, 2017.” The book before that says, “A gift from Shirley and John Naismith.”
I’ve always liked to notate such things when possible. Mom had a great memory for, “This was Uncle Jimmy’s plate that he bought Grandma before he left for WWI.” He never came home, so the plate is much treasured. So I’ve learned to put a story to many things.
Now, as I find my brain failing me sometimes, I keep a list of things and stories when and where I can. It helps me.
I tried to put as few big businessesses on the list, because I believe in small businesses and artisans and those kinds of things. On the list is the privately owned Bulk Warehouse on Plains Rd in Burlington, but I also included the Bulk Barn, which I love. You know, one tries to do one’s best but in the end, when you need Big Feet and fancy liquorice allsorts, you need ’em, or I do.
Thank you for the love you all share with me every day, my dear ones. x