Every year, our family picks a tag off of the Angel Tree at Dad's work. It's not something we have to do or something we have to remember to do. We just do it. It's part of our Christmas.
This year, when I read the tag that Dad picked off the tree, it honestly touched me, and it's not much, really. He had chosen a 16 year old girl, and all she had on her "Needs" list was a new rabbit cage; On her "Wants" list, gift cards to Petsmart. To see that tag and see that she didn't put something directly for herself, I just can't describe how it made me feel inside. But I mean, I don't know. Her pet rabbit may be like a best friend for her, or even close to everything she has. I'll never know. But I really hope she enjoys the rabbit cage we are giving her this Christmas, and will be able to buy nice things for her pet with the gift card.
Today, I went shopping with my Aunt Vickie to help her pick out stuff for the two tags she was buying for-both teenage girls. We found lots of stocking stuffers today, and also chose purses. They had each asked for MP3 players, so Vickie was going to pick those up later.
She also told me how my cousin Aimee had gotten her Angel Tree tags from a different location, and when she dropped off the gifts she already bought, there were tons of tags left on the tree. To me, I find it kind of sad, in a way. I understand that some are struggling with the economy these days (my pockets included!), but for the Angel Tree recipients, I don't think it's about how much is bought for them, but just the thought. Even if they receive one gift off their list, I'm sure they would be so grateful. We've already decided that next year, my family is going to do more than one tags. I don't know if that means 2 or 3 or what, but we're going to give more to those kids, and less to each other. We don't need anything else, and they certainly could use some more love around Christmas.
I hope this encourages some people to try and participate this year, if it's not too late, or next year by picking up a tag and buying a few gifts for someone you may never even meet!