FAMILY & HOME Holiday Gifts for the Soul By Sharee Silerio I t’s been said that the best things in life are free, and in my three decades of life, I know this to be true. Sunny days, blue skies, blooming flowers, baby coos and laughter, a sweet kiss on the cheek, a kind word – these are some of the gifts life has given me that do not cost a penny. This holiday, focus on gifting your family and friends what no one else can give: you. Here are a few gifts you can give that are precious, memorable, affirming and priceless. natural skills and supplies to create items that are one-of-a-kind. There is immeasurable value in uniqueness. Your Time . Make memories with the people you cherish by spending quality time with them. Take a walk with your grandmother or grandfather. Go to the museum with your niece or nephew. Invite your friends to your house for a chat around the firepit. Create moments to connect with others. Your Wisdom. Encouragement is perfect for the high school senior going to college, a friend starting a new job, or parents adjusting to an empty nest. In a short video, share what you love about them, your personal life lessons, inspiration, advice, or whatever you know will motivate them. Boost their inner being so they can unleash their greatness. Your Heart . If your loved one enjoys reading, create a mini poetry book or storybook including your favorite memories with them. Write a letter or poem about how much they mean to you. With the assistance of your local drugstore’s photo department, design and print a custom card with a kind message. Get deep. This year and beyond, look for ways to give others what has been given to you. Your Talent. Use your hands to express your affection. If you like to paint, draw, or make ceramics or crafts, tap into your 38 GAZELLE STL Your Compassion. If you notice that your family member or friend is stressed out, needs help or could use some free time, do what you can to assist. Whether it’s cleaning their kitchen, cooking a Crockpot meal or doing their laundry, create more room for them to breathe by checking something off of their to-do list. Silerio is a St. Louis-based freelance writer, a blogger, and a film and TV writer and producer. Her work has appeared in The Root, Curly Nikki and The St. Louis American. Read her writings on faith and self-love at