I am so lucky to have four amazing guys in my life; my father, my fella, my step-brother and, of course, my son. They have each given me love, encouragement, respect and support, so when it comes time to give them gifts, the least that I can do is make thoughtful choices to show them that I really do appreciate everything that they do for me. It’s next to impossible, though, to find things like that at the local mall or big-box store. That is why I have decided this year to make a pledge to give only handmade or repurposed gifts. Luckily for me, there are literally thousands of talented artisans offering up handmade goods; locally at craft sales and globally via the internet, which is where I turned to find something perfect for everyone on my list.
When I was young, I loved “helping” my parents get themselves ready to go out to holiday parties. I would watch my mom choose her outfit and apply her make up in the bedroom, but the real fun for me was sitting at the end of the bathroom counter watching my dad shave.
There was something so fascinating about the whole ritual of it – the impossibly thick lather of the shaving soap, the sink filled with steaming-hot water to rinse the razor and, finally the funny grimace that my dad would make when slapping on a handful of astringent after-shave. It’s something that will stick in my memory forever.