Since my sister graduated from high school I have bought her clothes for almost every single gift. It's practically a given that whatever brightly wrapped package sitting next to her birthday cake is from me and it's clothes. And the shirt-box shaped gift under the Christmas tree from me to her contains some sort of sweater or gloves.
And whenever we get together we almost always end up at a shopping center with her trying cute stuff on and me stuffing it in the face of the sales girl to get rung up.
And do you want to know why?
When my little sister (who is now a mother of 2) puts on something pretty her whole presence changes. She lifts up her shoulders until they kiss the bottom of her ears, she pins her arms down to either side and lifts her balled up fists at the wrists to the cutest, happiest angle you've ever seen. She whirls around and smiles from ear to ear. There is nothing so gratifying or easily achieved in life.
So, she gets clothes a lot...at least from me. And so do her kids because part of me thinks that maybe I can encourage this infectious clothes-induced joy in them as well.
Last night I went to the mall to buy a brand spankin new outfit for a friend's high school graduation. And as I sat on that heavenly sofa in the dressing room at Anthropologie and watched this girl who'd never tried on any clothes even close to the quality at that store I was overwhelmed with happiness for her. She was so adorable and excited and clearly felt so pretty. I felt so lucky to be the person in her life who could give her that moment.
And I started to love her like I love my sister.