This I Believe

Keely - Concord, Massachusetts
Entered on March 23, 2007
Age Group: Under 18
Themes: family

I was raised to believe that friendship is a family value. Friends and family are very important to me. As long as I can remember friends were always a big part of me– whether it was my friends from school, friends from soccer, or friends from church. I think one of the reasons that I value friendship so much is because of my family. Some of my family members I also consider my friends. Like with family members, I think people often forget to tell their friends how much they love them. I believe that it is important to show your friends how much they mean to you.

One of my favorite times of the year to be with friends and family is during the holiday season. This is my favorite time of year. There’s so much to look forward to during the holidays, and thinking about what to give to others is part of it. I look forward to one of my family’s traditions most of all. Every Christmas Eve morning, for the past four years, my mom and I have delivered cookies to our family friends. The tradition has many steps involved. Preparing and delivering cookies to about twelve houses is not an easy task, but it certainly is rewarding.

The first step is actually making the cookies. The cookies are the same every year. They are sugar cookies cut in a star shape dipped in milk chocolate, with sprinkles on top. I never get sick of eating those cookies. The people we give them to never get sick of them either; we almost feel like we would disappoint them if we brought something else.

My mom wraps the cookies in vibrant colors of tissue paper with bright ribbon. After all the cookie plates are in the trunk of the car, we’re ready to go. My job every year is picking out which plate of cookies goes best with each family. This may seem like a small job, but I think it means a lot. I feel lucky that I know these people so well that I would be able to choose which color tissue paper best suits the family.

One of the most rewarding parts of the tradition is giving the cookies to our friends and seeing their thankful faces. Some people remember that we’re coming, but others don’t. We have one family where the kids always rip open the package right away and start eating. One family is always in pajamas, even when it’s past noon. No matter what, they’re always happy to receive the cookies. Sometimes they have things to give us in return. This year we got the usual hugs and thank yous. We got homemade treats by a four year old. Ironically, this year half of one family was driving to our house to deliver a Swedish holiday bread, while the other half was home receiving cookies from us. But most of all, my mom and I get to see all these people we love. That’s the reason we do the cookies tradition. I feel that a lot of other people might do what my family does, maybe not making and giving cookies to a lot of their friends. I mean just more giving in general. I think that our tradition may influence others to do the same. Giving to others and knowing you made them happy– that is one of the best parts of this tradition and one of the best things one can do in life. This, I believe.