Taco tongue and others gifts

Some traits are a matter of cultivation, breeding, careful study and diligent hard work. Other traits are passed from one generation to the next through the genes. Still other traits we seem to pick up along the way, collected as souvenirs of a trip we remember only in moments.

Taco Tongue

Taco Tongue

As I understand it, one of the best traits I’ve managed to pass along to both of my young daughters is the ability to form the tongue into a taco shape. Tongue rolling has been the stimulus of several research studies that have concluded that tongue-rolling is somewhere between a genetic trait and a learned skill. I proudly parent two tongue-rollers. This skill will doubtlessly come in handy if they should ever be short a really short straw.

Other Gifts

My grandmother is not technically my grandmother, she’s stepmother to my dad. It’s not likely that she and I will share many characteristics, as we share no DNA. We have shared one very special gift, however. When I was young (9 or 10), she took a trip to North Carolina and ended up having a piece of furniture she found there shipped home.

My good gift

 It is a beautiful piece, carved tendrils of wood, wrapping themselves up and around a mirror on the cabinet into which folds a 3/4 bed frame. The bed is probably early 20th century, from the marks inside. I was enchanted by it. I imagined that it was a secret hiding place, a time machine, a gateway to worlds beyond. She let me sleep on it. In the morning, we shut it up and that’s how it stayed.

A couple of years ago, she called me. She wanted me to have the bed. It had warped shut, but she’d had it repaired and since I was the only one of her children or grandchildren to have slept on the bed, she wanted it to be mine. I don’t share her looks, her genetic predispositions, her blood, but I have shared this gift with her, our special bond.

Passing them down

If you, then, though you are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father in heaven give good gifts to those who ask him! – Matthew 7:11


I’m more interested in the non-genetic traits I pass on to my children. The gifts I give don’t have to be material, but they should be thoughtful and intentional. I want to give them a good foundation. My grandmother didn’t give me a bed, she gifted me with a magical escape route, a portal to the past, an element of imagination.

What good gifts have you received from your family? What good gifts do you plan to pass down to your children?


26 responses to “Taco tongue and others gifts

  1. We used to own an antique business and that piece is stunning.

  2. I’m also a taco tongue person. I can totally freak some people out with that. 😀

    My family has always been full of whistlers. Yup, that’s right. I know 5 different ways of whistling. It’s a gift for sure. I’m sure, I’ll be whistling my way to heaven.

    I hope that my children see that me, as being as imperfect as can be, I still have the possibility to love, even when it is hard to do so. I want my children to love, be known for loving their neighbors as themselves. Oh, and to whistle loving on their neighbors.

    • oh, I’ll have to write a post about my truly weird “stupid human trick,” that freaks people out, but I’ll leave everyone in suspense for now.

      I can’t whistle, not even a little. It’s pathetic, my whistling skills.

      Loving your neighbors – the commandment that’s also a gift.

  3. i hope to pass on the Taco tongue.

    But more than that, I pray I pass on the same thing I learned from my dad: a love of people, a sense of service.

    but passing stuff on to my children will have to wait until I find someone who will have my children.

    • start collecting now. I’m also passing down an impressive (or, it will be) movie library. I think passing on a love of people is one of the most important things we can pass on.

  4. I just pictured the gateway to Narnia as I read this.

    My family never really had much material wealth but I have received some invaluable gifts from my parents. Humor and optimism from my dad. Intelligence and discernment from my mom. A love of fart jokes from my sisters.

  5. I’m a taco tongue person too! I don’t have any kids to pass anything on to :o(.

  6. I feel that my dad’s servant heart was definitely passed down. I hope that my children always look to serve other people.

    Okay, this is going to sound completely weird/gross… but, truthfully, I’m wondering now if this will be passed down to my kids (now that you wrote this). What I can do is hold food in my throat/esophagus area for quite a bit of time. It looks like I swallowed it, but then… voila!…. up it comes and it’s like a sick-magic-trick. Kinda nasty (ha!), but excellent at parties.

  7. A gift from my father (and my Father) that I want to pass down is the ability to be calm in the midst of chaos. I need it and I imagine that they will, too.

  8. I want my kids to have a gratitude for everything in their lives and a vibrant relationship with God. That would be amazing. Thanks Kristin.

  9. I also have the taco tongue skills. I hope I can pass them down pretty brilliantly.

    One thing I’m proud to have been passed down to me from my dad is his soft heart. He has always been a great model to me for what compassion looks like, and I pray I can pass this on to my girls. Thanks for sharing.

    • we’ve been talking a lot lately about caring for others and what our responsibilities are to those around us (not just those we know). I think I got that from my other grandmother. She was Charmin on the inside.

  10. A precious memory I cherish.

  11. Ok, Sister. You teach mine taco tongue and I’ll hopefully impart some cooking skills on yours, taught to me by Bebop… minus the tenderized steak. It seemed to skip a generation :/

  12. Pingback: Messiah Mom

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