Rite of Passage: The Gifts

Blaise achieves his first year on the 13th of July. I walk around a store today wondering what to buy him. I think: a pocketknife. I think every father wants to buy his son a pocketknife. I don't think Blaise has the strength yet to open a pocketknife. So, the knife idea is out. I buy a toy Austin Mini, big enough so he won't choke on it - safety first, that's my motto.

As I walk around I have an epiphany: I'll buy Blaise a great gift each year and when he becomes a man at age 13, he'll receive the 12 gifts that I've been storing up for him. Stuff every man should have. I really want Blaise to experience a rite of passage when he turns 13 - hike the Appalachian Trail or memorization task (book of John?) for examples. Then I can present him with tools for life as a symbol of recognition as a man.

So... I need a list of 12 items. Here's what I have so far:

1. Leatherbound Pocket Bible
2. Swiss Army Knife, sheath, belt
3. Zippo Lighter
4. Compass
5. Sleeping Bag
6. Hard Cover set of The Lord of the Rings
7. Musical Instrument (his choice)
8. Toolbox full of tools
9. Watch
10. Easel with drawing/ painting implements
11. Camera
12. Leatherbound Journal with really nice pens
13. Detailed family tree chart
14. Shaving Kit
15. Wallet, Bank Account
16. Map of the World
17. Cribbage board and 2 decks of cards
18. Basic Chemistry, Biology, and Physics texts
19. Video Camera
20. Weights
21. Collection of 100 essential songs
22. Collection of 10 essential films
23. Recipe book, Pot, Spoon
24. Paddle for Canoeing
25. The Journal his parents kept about him for his first years

If you have some ideas for the essentials list, I'd love to hear them. I don't want to buy electronic stuff that will be out of date in 2018 and incompatible with computers of that age - iPods and cell phones are out. Just good old fashioned survival / edifying stuff.


Sirdar said...

I guess this really depends on what is essential but the list sounds more like what "you" think is essential....now. In 12 years that list can change depending on circumstance. Because we are different I wouldn't personally consider a lot of the list as essential. As our kids grew older I soon realised that some "things" are not necessarily essential, but more my wants for them. Blaise may have a different wants/needs as he gets older and they may not match yours. Just a heads-up because I've experienced it with my four and you may too.
But I like your list as it seems you are passing on your personality on to Blaise to go forth and experience what life gives you. It also touches on a number of different subjects from art, bible, survival, music, school, and most important...life.
And to answer your question...let me think about it.

littledeb_04@yahoo.ca said...

I loved Your list Zaak...and it is a really neat idea.... Sidar said almost exactly what I was going to say.
Blaise is going to be alot of the things that you hope for and will love alot of the same things that you do.You will be amazed by him and what paths he takes just like I am amazed by you. You took part of me and part of Papa and became who you are. So, the list is cool...but really he is going to take part of you and part of Amber and that is the most amazing gift that you will give your little first born. He is already a wonderful little guy!HAPPY BIRTHDAY BLAISE!

Aimee said...

A baseball glove? Not really a tool, but a game of catch is a good father/son bonding thing.
A calculator? Teaches him to manage those finances early on.

Glad you included a cookbook! Maybe it can be mine when I am finished. =)

Zaak said...

Baseball glove. I like it. My father gave me one. We played catch last summer. It was good. Really good.

Calculator: I'm hoping he'll be a pencil and paper dude. I've tutored too many mathematically challenged, calculator dependent kids...

I agree the list is "my" view of what is essential for growth, development, and maturity. But that is all I can offer, right? Me. I haven't included a fishing pole, snowmobile, and metal detector because those aren't me. I'm hoping that Blaise will share a lot of my interests, not all, but a lot - so we can share experiences together and so that I can pass on the heritage that has been passed on to me by my father and forefathers (and mothers too).

I should clarify my use of the word "essential." None of these items are essential to life (breathing, good job, dying...), but I think they would definitely help in development - other items would too, this is just my cross-section.

Sal-yo said...

Hey zaak, do the gifts corespond with the numbers of years of his birthdays? cause a Zippo lighter + a three year old is a wee bit risky I think. Otherwise I like the thought you're putting into this and I think all are great ideas. they are all usefull and I'm sure that they will all be appreciated by Blaise.
PS I have your ball glove with ZAAK written on the thumb!!

April said...

Wow Zaak, Blaise is lucky to have a Dad like you. I suppose you would have already given him his own bible by that age? I have a little one I got at Vacation Bible school when I was 4. It's special.