woman holding a gift box

One of the best gift-givers I know is my dear friend Alicia Ybarbo Zimmerman.

I first met this wicked smart, bubbly and funny gal when I was working at NBC in New York.

Alicia was one of those iconic Pages ushering celebrities from the Green Room.

I was one of those frantic Production Assistants (wishing I was a producer) at Today.

Alicia later ended up being one of those iconic Today Show producers winning Emmys, writing best-selling books, raising amazing kids with her doting husband Mark.

Alicia also later became my bridesmaid.

Throughout the two-decade I’ve known her, I’ve kept and thoroughly used every single gift she’s given me.

In fact, I’m wearing one of the gifts she gave me right now — a soft indigo blue tank style pajama set with white lace trim and a dainty white ribbon in front. A bridal shower gift she gave me over 18 years ago. The edge lace is almost gone but it’s one of my favorite pieces I lounge around in.

Gifting when done well is about having a meaningful connection with others. Connection brings meaning and purpose to our lives.

Receiving a gift that has meaning to us, makes us feel that we’re important, that we’re loved and that we belong.

It can be as simple as a flowy, colorful beach towel with the words ALOHA on it, or personalized note cards with funny pictures of my kids she got from the internet, or a mobile charger personalized with my initials and the places I frequent often (NY and Hawaii)

These little gifts say — even though we’re thousands of miles away.

I thought of you. You mean something to me. I love you back.

Who’s the best gift-giver you know?

What’s the best gift you’ve received?