Monday, December 27, 2010

The Joy of Giving

Last year we began a new tradition. Unpacking our attic, dusting off scarcely used presents and shipping them off to Goodwill just before we moved to Hawai'i challenged us to completely rethink the way we give gifts. Why do we give "a little something" just so that it can be opened now and dusted later? Why not instead give memories or a service that is desired but unaffordable? So, Jon took us out for ice cream, Laura took us out to a Christmas play, Lydia bought us a movie for movie night, you get the idea. This year, the Three Muskateers (Daniel, Lydia and Jonathan) pooled their money and took the whole family to see Tangled (I highly recommend it). For us, seeing a movie is an unaffordable luxury so this was a real treat. Dave and I still bought gifts for our children and we still filled their stockings, but with more intention towards simplicity. We also gave our kids a pretty cool memory, designing and blowing their own glass ornament. Island Glass Works is a local glass blowing business that combines chemistry, physics and art in one of a kind creations. Here are some of our memories.

First they gather the glass from the bottom of this oven.

Then they add color to the glass using glass shards.

Then they add air. We blew our ornaments through a straw.

They shaped it using tools that have not changed in 4,000 years.

All glass appears to be red when it is first out of the fire.

You begin to see the true colors as it cools.

Now that was a fun gift!
Merry Christmas from the Collins Clan!

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