How About a Gift from You to You, Yourself This Christmas?
By Daryl Hoole

One of my Christmas joys is to give myself a gift each year. How about doing the same for yourself?  Let me tell you how it’s worked for me, and you may come up with something for yourself.

Some years my gift to myself has been the satisfaction of a task completed. On other occasions it’s been the reward of a goal reached. Several times it’s been the feeling of pleasure when an item on my “bucket list” has been accomplished. Often it’s the feeling of gratitude for a problem solved or a challenge successfully met.  Some years the gift has been for the family; every year, however, the family has benefitted indirectly from my gift because whenever a mother is at peace and of good cheer, the family is blessed.    

Before I disclose my gift for myself for this Christmas, may I refer you to some gift ideas from previous years that I’ve shared through my monthly “At Home” column on Meridian. (They’re also available on my personal website under “free articles.”)  

In December of 2006, the article for my column was captioned, “A Christmas Gift to Mothers Beyond Measure.”  I wrote that at the top of most LDS mothers’ Christmas wish list is the hope and prayer that their children will be faithful and grow up willing to love and serve the Lord and keep his commandments. Many mothers, including me, often insist they want no other gift for Christmas than for their children to make correct choices.  (Click here to read about the Lord’s promise for making this happen.)

My gift to myself (and to other mothers) in December of 2007 was about not just peace on earth, goodwill toward men, but specifically about “peace on my spot on earth-the spot where my house stands-and goodwill toward my husband and children.”  (Click here to read “Peace [On My Spot] on Earth”)

This was followed by “The Empty Box,” my gift to myself another year.  I’m still amazed by the fact that an empty box can provide so much delight in one’s life.  (Click here to read.)

An all-time favorite (and one that deserves repeating every few years) was published in 2008 and captioned, “Make This a Record Year.”  This one does wonders for organizing papers and photos and thereby providing peace of mind.  (Click here to read.)

Closely related to the “Record Year” and another greatly-appreciated gift to our family, as well as to me, was described in “A Treasure Chest-or Keepsake Box-for Your Children” (Click here to read.)

By the way, you’ll notice as you check these articles out that even though these ideas can be high in value, they have nothing to do with dollars and cents.    

Now, about my most recent gift of choice. The concept was suggested by a friend and I immediately recognized it as a gift to give myself.  I’m encouraging my children and grandchildren to give it to themselves. Furthermore, I’m passing the idea on to you, my readers, that you, too, may experience it. 

All you need for this gift is a copy of your Patriarchal Blessing, a pen or pencil, and a large piece of paper folded in fourths and labeled as follows:

My Patriarchal Blessing

  1. Comfort and Validation                               2. Admonitions

(Things to be grateful for)                                    (Things to do)


  1. Warnings                                                    4. Promises and Blessings

 (Things to be aware of)                                      (Things to strive for)


Then prayerfully and carefully read your patriarchal blessing and, line by line, list each thought on paper according to the four categories suggested above. It’s very likely that what appears on the paper will be something impressive and insightful, powerful and beautiful-something that will enhance the meaning and value of your patriarchal blessing as it guides you and blesses your life. Merry Christmas!

Do You Need H.E.L.P.?
Home Executive Lessons and Principles
by Daryl Hoole

Daryl is answering questions from readers who contact her at Her response will be sent directly to the reader. Some responses may also be incorporated into her At Home column that appears the second Monday of each month on Meridian. This information will also be available on personal website at

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