New Year’s Eve Goal Review December 31, 2010
Putting in A Picture December 9, 2010
So I have put in a picture of myself on this wordpress site. I think. I guess I will know when I publish the post and look at it after it is published.
I’d like to figure out how to feed a blog from another blog spot into this one. I’ll work on that next. I know eventually I will have to switch to WordPress as my main site, but for now, I am tiptoeing into the water.
I am not techno-smart. This will be an interesting transition for me.
Upended Traditions and Why I love A CHRISTMAS STORY December 8, 2010
One of my favorite Christmas movies is A CHRISTMAS STORY. I’m not sure how many of my followers have seen the movie, but it if you haven’t seen it, I might spoil it with this blog. It is set in the fifties and is about this boy, Ralphie, who desperately wants a BB Gun for Christmas. Everyone tells him he’ll shoot his eye out, even Santa. But he persists in his petitions to receive the BB Gun. Meanwhile, the movie is chock full of adventures, boy adventures, with bullies and snow and double dog dares. The parents are baffled, befuddled, but loving. The Dad (as played by Darren McGavin) is fabulous–especially when he receives his prize from a company: a lamp in the shape of a lady’s leg. Very fun. The entire movie just makes you root for Ralphie and it is heartwarming. I think the reason it works is that this is not a picture perfect family with all its ducks in a row. Martha Stewart traditions don’t prevail. In the end, even the best traditions get upended by the dogs. Their Christmas dinner is destroyed and stolen. What do they do? They go out for Chinese and they have a good time.
And this is how traditions become different for every family. For we all want to have the comfort of the same and the tried and true traditions as we approach the holiday season. But the truth is, traditions get upended all the time because of health problems, family problems, money problems, and the list goes on. Last year we traveled to Texas just before Christmas because my father-in-law was ill, and we wanted to see him one more time. I remember another year when my daughter was in pre-school and her teacher said her mom was so sick that year that they didn’t shop at all for Christmas. They clipped money to the tree, made a big pot of chili and hung out in their PJs. Then they went out the day after Christmas and spent their money at all the sales. A new tradition was born out of a serious necessity. This year I know a friend, my neighbor, who has ill parents on both sides of the family. They’ve got three young children. They won’t be home for Christmas because they’re traveling 14 hours to two different sets of parents to support them during this holiday season. Together we brainstormed how to create a solution and a “new” tradition for this year. One that would be fun for the kids and would take the pressure off the parents as they cope with their ailing ones.
See, that is why A Christmas Story works. Because it shows that it is in how we respond to the winds of change that we recreate new bonds and forge new traditions. So this year, as we head into the holiday season, my wish for all of my readers is that they kick back, lift off as many of the “shoulds” from their shoulders, and create new traditions in the face of any setback.
Happy Holidays and for Your Reading Pleasure click the links below to learn about other folks and how they cope with the holidays!
Goodness Me It Is Goodie Making Time! December 6, 2010
December is here! It’s time to make some goodies. And I’ve got some retro blogs with some of my favorite receipes for the holidays in them. First up? Oreo Truffles thanks to my Heart of Dixie friends at The Writing Playground.
Next? My fabulous friend Lori’s mini eggnog loaf cakes. Here is the recipe:
I’d love some more fun and easy recipes. What do you make every year that gives your family happy hearts?
Pay It Forward-Give Of Yourself Every Day December 3, 2010
December has a Pay It Forward Day (at least that one pal on my Facebook says–so I’ll roll with that info). I think it is a fabulous concept to carry in our hearts. However, I’d like to challenge all my friends and followers to have a Pay It Forward spirit throughout the year, every day, as we chug along and pursue our goals.
If we are able to pursue our goals, whatever they may be, then we are blessed. If we are educated, able to read, live in a country where freedom is a concept, not just a word, then we are blessed. If we have leisure time, can take time to read a book, cook a nice meal, break bread with friends and family then we are blessed.
If we can walk, talk, breath, sing, dance then we are blessed.
Yes, there are dark days. Yes, we all have tragedies that will occur in our lives. Yes, we will falter. But if we remember that we are truly blessed, we can carry that blessing into the world. This isn’t a religious thing. This is a “gee, gosh darn it you are bloody lucky and fortunate to live in a world where even having the time to read this blog is a big deal.”
Seriously. It is.
So as you pursue your dreams, shoot for the moon, grab for the stars I hope you also remember to share yourself and Pay It Forward every day. Every day ask yourself what you are doing to make at least one person’s life a bit better. I’m talking about strangers, people you meet in random ways, people you might never see again.
Many people want to accomplish BIG things and they go about changing the world. In BIG ways. That’s great. That’s wonderful. But if we can’t practice kindness in small ways, we will never be tasked with big requests from the universe. Therefore I believe it is in the little acts of kindness that we truly evoke big changes in the world. A nice word, a friendly smile, a thank you, a compliment can go a long way to brighten a person’s life. You never know how much of a difference one small act of kindness can cause. It is a ripple effect. The more ripples you gently stir into the waters of humanity, then the greater the waves of goodness will become in our world.
And we don’t have to shout out our good deeds or advertise them. We can be daily living examples of trying to live a life with purpose and kindness and compassion regardless of our religious beliefs, our backgrounds, or our cultures. So I encourage you to be aware of the people around you and to consciously and purposefully choose to act with kindness and compassion in your everyday encounters.
Countdown to Christmas December 1, 2010
We’re counting the days till Christmas morning. We’ll be busy running around buying presents, planning events, watching Darling Teenager perform in her voice recital, baking and making our annual Christmas goodies (yes, stay tuned for the recipes!), putting together an Angel Tree package for an adopted senior (last year I had an elderly man who wanted a stuffed animal–loved that!), sending Christmas cards, making calendars and photo albums for our friends & family………
Christmas is the MOST BUSIEST TIME OF THE YEAR.
And I love it. I love the candles glowing, the light of the tree illuminating our family room, the good food, the friends and the celebrations. I love learning about the other cultures and their traditions during this time.
What is your favorite holiday memory? What special cultural things do you do that make your holiday special?