The Best Gifts in Life are Simple

I made a quick trip to visit my parents and get some vitamin D sunshine this week. I love where I live in Washington State, but to get some warmth and sunshine in the rainy season is worth the travel.

It’a amazing how comfortable you feel when you step back into your family. The family that raised me, the loving Mom and Dad that nurtured, provided, loved and encouraged and shaped who I am. It was my beginning and the family God gave me, a gift.

It is good to go back to the beginning sometimes and treasure the simple joys in life. I arrived and my mother had over on her dining room table, a birthday cake all ready for me, chocolate cake with rich dark chocolate frosting. It was a family project, my sister made the frosting while my Mom was at bible study. My birthday isn’t until tomorrow and yet she had it waiting for me a few days early, so we could enjoy it through the visit. That’s just like my Mom, it’s her gift. She loves to be hospitable and she does an amazing job through loving people with her culinary delights. Simple gift but oh so yummy! I felt loved.

The next day we went to Coronado beach and walked around. We laughed, we shared memories of pictures and Mother’s Day Brunches at the famous Hotel Del Coronado. Again, simple gift, but oh so memorable. We stopped on the way home and shared a tradition, In-N-Out Burger, messy, gooey, but oh so yummy. As we licked our fingers and wiped up the mess, we smiled, told stories and we laughed. Another simple moment and yet a gift to share friendship with two people who have given so much to me. I smiled inside and in that moment was perfect happiness, to be loved and feel like you belong, accepted wholly and without hesistation, is truly a gift. It reminded me of the phrase in Les Miserable in the lyrics, “To love another person is to see the face of God.” To be loved unconditionally is to experience heaven on earth and a touch of how much God loves me, and oh so much more than I can fathom.

We came home, took a nap and then had cake for dinner! I love that about my parents, they aren’t too rigid to color outside the lines and have cake for dinner. Why not?

Today I woke up and found at the end of my bed a note that said Dad wanted to take me out for breakfast. When I saw the note I smiled and quickly got ready. This was tradition, a date with my Dad and time to listen to his stories and musings over a generation and world I can only imagine. One more memory on this trip but now I am feeling so overwhelmed (in a good way), again more gifts.

So now guess what? My Dad is in the kitchen and it’s time for more cake and more memories. I better get mine before it’s all gone! Simple joys, simple gifts and for me the best birthday!

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