We started The Gift of Words tradition a number of years ago. On a birthday we gather together as a family, all 4 sisters, 3 husbands, 5 nephews, 1 niece, 1 obnoxious dog and 2 proud grandparents and we each take a turn giving the birthday boy/girl their gift of words. The words we give can be something we see in them, like about them, or a blessing over them.
Life is short…have cake first. I know, I know, it’s a silly way of describing the heart behind the tradition but Life is short. And we’ve experienced death in our family, unexpected death, that makes you want just one more day, one more conversation, one more time to tell that person you love them. So we eat our cake first! We’re not going to wait until the memorial services and tell people how we really feel about them, we do it today. Our family gives the gift of words each birthday to honor our loved one.
It’s one of our favorite traditions that even the little kiddos participate in, you can see they love being included in the ‘adult’ conversations around the table, and I can see how it’s only made our family closer, more transparent and kind with one another!
You can steal the idea…I’m sure the next person to celebrate a birthday in your family won’t mind!