Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized

Shopping ideas for a minimalist

I practice material minimalism. “Less is more and even less is even more” appeals to me (I try not to practice this minimalistic approach when it applies to patience, kindness, generosity…).

Christmas and birthdays can invite a challenge because people ask, “If you don’t like extra material possessions, what am I supposed to get you?” Consumables and outings!

Below, I’ve listed my favorite gifts. At the end, I encourage readers to offer their creative non-material present ideas!

anniversary birthday blur bokeh
Photo by Tim Mossholder on Pexels.com

My favorite things

Citrus or bakery scented candles (no lavender, rose, or perfume smells)
Dark chocolate (especially when blended with fruit or nuts)
Target and Wal-Mart gift cards (the only places I shop to replace shoes and essential clothing)
Blue, Purple, or Green Bic Roller Pens (no gel or felt tip jobbies)
Postage stamps (I really like this year’s FROG ones)!
Note cards and thank you cards (blank inside)
Retreat center stays
Grocery store gift cards (love to cook and bake! I have recipes to last for eternity)
Workshops/Classes/Seminars/Conferences
Music concert tickets
Cabin vacations
Theatre tickets
Figure skating shows
Fellow dream chaser to experience 1 of my 100+ lifetime dreams with me (so far, I’ve gotten to achieve 64 out of 107 from my Dream List)
Donation to humane society, dog rescues
Dunkin Donut coffee
Turtlenecks in every color (the kind that go all the way up the neck)
Double sized bed flannel sheet sets (I can never be too warm)

Readers! Your turn! What are your creative ideas to give someone who defines themselves as a “non-materially interested minimalist”? 

Leaping into the holiday lily pad of life from the FROG Blog,

Christina

 

Frog Blog, Grace, Hope, Lighthearted Humor, Love, New Starts, Prayers, Troubled Waters, Uncategorized

Voice Texts

When communication methods shifted to an electronic wave, I found myself saddened by a loss of personalized connection. This sadness surprised me because as an introvert I require abundant quietness. I thrive with large margins of isolation, but I’m not  accustomed to loneliness.

I socialize through snail mail cards, one-on-one walks, or phone calls. People who used to exchange phone calls started answering voice mails with texts. Sometimes within a minute of my voice mail, I’d receive a text, “Thanks for your voice mail. It was nice to hear your voice.” Based on their quick response, I figured the person was available to talk so I immediately called them back, only to be greeted by their recorded voice mail message.

marketing office working business
Photo by Negative Space on Pexels.com

Our son travels for his job and often there is a three-hour time zone difference between us. He and my husband exchange texts. I send cards and emails, but because of these time zone variances, we’ve missed “live” communication.

Last time we talked on the phone, our one-hour visit was flooded with updates and we hung up with still more to say. Neither of us are fans of lengthy phone calls so sometimes it’s weeks between verbal conversations. Our son understands why I’m unable to text and we joke that as soon as he handwrites a letter to me, I’ll text him back to let him know I received it.

Instead of continuing our communication gap, we began “voice texting.” We agreed to call each other Monday through Friday and leave a one-to-two-minute voice message. These messages may include a question to ponder, a funny story, an inspirational quote, quick family news, or a song that reminds us of something.

He knows I take lunch between 11:30-12:30 Eastern Time so when he sees my number come up during that time, he knows I’m leaving a “verbal text.” After work, I turn off my phone and when he gets home late in the evening, he leaves a return “voice text.” These daily two-minute investments have yielded stronger return than our bi-monthly marathon phone calls did.

I’m grateful for this unscreened connection that has built our mother-son relationship. H

Happy Thanksgiving week from the lily pad of life,

Christina