Each Christmas, instead of purchasing individual gifts, I take my family out to a fancy dinner on the Plaza in Kansas City. The tradition began nine years ago, during my freshman year of college, and has become one of my family's favorite evenings during the Christmas season. We are a family of six, and, while we have been blessed financially with more than enough to make for a good life, we rarely go out for fancy dinners; the tab has a tendency to quickly escalate with six mouths to feed. Beyond that, as we have grown older, family dinners with all six of us around the table are less frequent. Thus, dinners like these Christmas dinners are a rare gem each year. Yet, beyond the infrequency that makes these dinners special, I've found that, unlike most Christmas gifts, we actually remember them a year later. More than a steak or some potatoes, I'm able to give my family (and myself) a memory that endures throughout the years. Books are read and shelved; clothes go out of style; electronics break; gift cards are spent and discarded; but I can recall with pride the times we ate at Starker's, The Classic Cup, and Fogo de Chau. In a season where the fool's gold of materialism shines more brightly every year, it is not the things bought but the memories made with loved ones that truly satisfy.
May you be blessed with lasting memories this Christmas. And may you cherish the true reason for celebration, the gift that was given to us 2000 years ago.