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I was having one of those nights where I was thinking about how nice it would be to have a personal chef. (Also known as every single night.) I had just gathered the ingredients to make biscuits when my 6-year-old strolled through the kitchen. I had a decision to make. I could go about my business and make the biscuits myself, or I could ask him to help me. Let’s be honest, it would have been easier and much less messy to just do it myself. But I also knew how much my son loved to help me bake.

“Hey bud, do you want to help me make these biscuits?”

A huge grin quickly spread on his face.

“Sure, Mom, thanks for offering!”

He was thrilled I had offered to let him help. Something so simple made my son so happy.

I hadn’t offered to buy him a brand-new bicycle. I hadn’t offered to let him eat candy for breakfast. I had just offered to let him help me.

Talk about a convicting moment.

In the hustle and bustle of the holiday season, it is so easy to get wrapped up in all. the. things. There are concerts to attend, and trees to be trimmed. There are holiday parties, houses that need decorating, and large family meals to plan. And of course, all the shopping that must be done as you try to fulfill the wishes that have been whispered into Santa’s ear or sent in a letter to the North Pole.

It can be a crazy time of year.

But let’s not forget, as we rush around malls or spend hours shopping online, one of the greatest gifts we can give our kids is the offering of ourselves. The offering of our time. The offering of a few more minutes of reading at bed-time. The offering of an extra hug. The offering of a listening ear. The offering of patience, empathy and a kinder response.

Sure, they will probably squeal with delight when they unwrap the latest gaming system, the newest Hatchimal or the designer jeans they have been eyeing at the mall. But they don’t really NEED any of those things.

What they do need is you. Your presence amongst all the presents is the best gift you could ever give them.

May each of us remember to hold this truth in our minds and our hearts this holiday season.

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Mary Ann Blair

Mary Ann Blair is a stay-at-home mom living in the Pacific Northwest with her two little gentlemen and hubs. She loves connecting with other parents who like to keep it real! Her work has been published on Her View From Home, Motherly, A Fine Parent, Perfection Pending, That’s Inappropriate, Pregnant Chicken, Sammiches and Psych Meds, Red Tricycle and in Chicken Soup For the Soul. She can be found at maryannblair.com or on Facebook at Mary Ann Blair, Writer.

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