Joel Shuler

“It’s not how much we give but how much love we put into giving.” -Mother Teresa

According to the number-crunching folks at Gallup, every American 18 and up will spend an average of $780 on holiday gifts this year. That’s lots of gifts, lots of “stuff.”

There are many, many ways to show people that we care, that we love them and that we’re so grateful for their presence in our lives.

Readers of this magazine tend to be more thoughtful about many things (the places they shop, the foods they eat, the information that’s disseminated through the media, etc.) including holiday gifts. With that in mind, here are a few ideas for thoughtful, meaningful gifts:

  • Memberships. There are lots of ways to move your body and stimulate your mind in San Antonio, and many of these places offer some type of annual membership that allows members to enjoy the destination year-round.
    • Museums: Our community is blessed with amazing local museums. Some of the most notable include The Witte Museum (www.wittemuseum.org), the San Antonio Museum of Art (www.samuseum.org), the McNay Art Museum (www.mcnayart.org) and the San Antonio Children’s Museum (www.sakids.org).
    • The Zoo: You can’t just visit the zoo one time. With a zoo membership, you can visit throughout the year (www.sazoo.org).
    • Botanical Garden: The San Antonio Botanical Garden provides beauty, serenity and wonder year-round (www.sabot.org).
    • Fitness Center, Health Club, Studio Membership: A fitness center, yoga studio or YMCA membership is a great way to kick-start a healthier lifestyle by encouraging regular physical activity. Another great gift idea is a package of yoga, Pilates, Zumba, barre or other fitness/wellness classes.
  • Tribute and Recognition Gifts. Many places offer ways you can recognize or honor someone special. For example, the San Antonio Botanical Garden offers the opportunity to purchase a living garden bed in a person’s honor for a full year. The San Antonio Zoo allows you to “adopt” an animal for a year. These are great ways to support local organizations that you believe in while also giving a meaningful gift.
  • Time. The gift of your one-on-one personal time is magical. Try hand-making a card and giving the gift of one hour a week in 2015 to take a walk with a loved one, or one hour every other week to get together for coffee, or two hours each month in 2015 to have lunch at the destination of your loved one’s choice. There are few greater gifts.

May you find time to remember and contemplate the true meaning of the season, and may you give from your heart and experience many moments of joy with those you love.

Joel-signature Joel Shuler, Publisher

Posted in: Local, Newsbrief
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