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12 Days of Christmas Giveaways (2017) – Day 5

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.

*Give Away has Ended*


One of you WHO COMMENTS ON ALL TWELVE POSTS AND ALSO SHARES ABOUT THE SERIES ON SOCIAL MEDIA will win a grand prize from me, pictured here.

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.

REMEMBER…in order to win the grand prize, you must leave a comment on all 12 posts. You can start with Day One HERE.

OK, let’s get started with our fifth day’s guest, Alex Kuykendall!


Giving the Gift of Time

It was the end of the Christmas Tea. A room filled with beautiful women in fancy clothes sitting in front of china place settings on their decorated tables. I’d just talked to the group about unmet expectations and grief during the holidays when one of them approached me and said, “I’m changing my Christmas wish list. This year all I want is for each of my boys to take me out to lunch in January. Alone.” I could tell she was holding back the tears. “I miss my boys.” I could feel my tears of empathy well because I know what it is to want someone’s attention.

In a world where we are increasingly isolated and ever busy we can forget to slow down enough to notice the ones closest to us. A great way to ensure some time together after the hustle, bustle of the Christmas season is to give a set aside activity as a gift. This tells the recipient time with them matters. It can be a great budget friendly gift too because though time is costly, we do not have to spend money to offer it.

Whether the people on our list are our preschool aged children, our parents, neighbors, or friends, we can offer them intentional, quality time as our Christmas offering. Giving time as a gift, minimizes stuff accumulation, and increases memories. Gift ideas include:

  • Tickets to a sporting or cultural event
  • A restaurant gift certificate to be used together
  • A vacation sometime in 2018
  • A coupon for a back rub on demand
  • A class to take together
  • A standing weekly date to walk through the neighborhood
  • A membership to a local museum or zoo
  • Movie tickets or Netflix membership for the homebound recipient with the promise of Friday night movie nights

No matter your budget, or the person on your Christmas list, you can choose just the right gift of time to give. As Karen says in her book, Listen, Love, Repeat, “Most anything we want to find is easily available with the click of a mouse or a touch of the screen. But I have noticed through the years that of all the presents my kids might receive, the ones that matter the most are those that cost time.” (Pg. 64) When we give the gift of time we are telling the recipient they are worth this prized resource. Our presence is priceless and they are worth that price.

Day Five Giveaway

For the 12 Days of Christmas series, I am giving away A copy of my book, Loving My Actual Christmas: An Experiment in Relishing The Season and a Loving My Actual Life racer tank (size XS).

10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.10th Annual #12DaysofChristmas Giveaways (2017) at karenehman.com.

You can read more about Alexandra Kuykendall’s experiment to put an end to the holiday madness in her new book Loving My Actual Christmas: An Experiment in Relishing the Season. A trusted voice in mothering circles, Alex speaks to women around the world about issues of parenting, faith and identity. She is the Cohost of The Open Door Sisterhood Podcast and has also authored Loving My Actual Life and The Artist’s Daughter. Alex lives in the shadows of downtown Denver with her husband Derek and their 4 daughters who range in age from 15 to 6. You can connect with her at AlexandraKuykendall.com.


12 Days of Christmas Giveaways Rules

  1. You can comment on all 12 days (once per person) up until midnight Pacific time, Sunday, December 17. All posts are linked on Day One here.
  2. U.S. Addresses only please.
  3. One daily winner will be chosen from each day’s comments and all winners (including Grand Prize) will be announced on Wednesday, December 20.
  4. Share the giveaway with your friends and followers using the share buttons below.
  5. If you’re not already subscribed, click here and receive an email notification each day of our series.

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  1. love experience gifts! My mom is gifting each of my older boys a restaurant gift card and my grandma is giving them money so they can then have a special shopping/out to eat day with just mom or dad one on one without their siblings!

  2. Thank you, Alexandra! How right you are! Quality time spent with another person tells them we truly care and it feeds our souls too. I want to read your book and I already read Listen Love Repeat and I need to make it a point to spend more time on & with others.

  3. My daughter and I spent time together volunteering at a local Homeless shelter serving dinner!! It was a humbling experience for both of us

  4. I love when we get memberships to museums, etc! It’s fun for the entire year and it doesn’t take up any room in my house!

  5. Time is such a special & priceless gift to give because all we ever hear is of others being to busy. I once heard that busy meant Being Under Satan’s Yolk. Makes you wonder! I try my best to not use the word “busy” and to make time for others as much as possible.

  6. After being absent from church for 5 weeks because of an injury, I was eager to touch base with many people I hadn’t seen. God found me a seat next to a dear friend who is a recent widow. After the service, we began to talk and as it turned out, by the time our conversation finished, all the other people I’d thought it so important to see were gone. It was a wonderful reminder to slow down and stop to give people my time of day, seeing it as God’s appointment over my own plans. This book sounds wonderful, indeed. :)

  7. Thank you for reminding us about the gift of time. It’s been 5 years that I moved from Puerto Rico to Florida. When I visit my family is during summer vacation. I really miss our family reunion in my grandma”s house during Christmas time. Where we spent time talking and taking lots of pictures. Your book would be a lovely gift. Thanks for sharing.

  8. Absolutely! We see our children grow up so fast… we need the gift of giving time to cherish moments to last a lifetime.

  9. I agree–the best gifts are time. I’m excited about my husband and I giving the gift of time to our kids this christmas in the form of prepaid date nights and gift cards to go out with either mom or dad and no siblings. ?

  10. What a great reminder to slow down and live in the moment and enjoy the time with other or alone and the nature around you. To thank God for the little things that we have already.

  11. Great suggestions about the gifts of time and experiences. We give one of our kids’ families a membership in a local science center. The other family is far away and we give them gift certificates for places they can enjoy as a family.

  12. Spending time with my two boys is extremely high on my list since my sweet little one had been diagnosed with epilepsy. I was always rushing through life until that very night, and God showed me that all I needed in life was right in front of me.

  13. Thank you for this valuable reminder! I am going to make a point of giving the gift of time to those I love most this year.

  14. Time spent together is so precious and so much more important than material things. Those memories will last longer too!

  15. My best friend and I said to one another last week “Let’s gift each other with an escape room for Christmas.” We will remember the time spent together long after…..

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