Thursday, December 21, 2006

comfort and joy

Boy, this feels good. Again we're having a Christmas season that feels magical and joyous, focused on making memories with family/friends and creating gifts from the heart. There's no feeling of running ourselves ragged or the mall rage that I see described in the headlines. There will be no credit card hangover come January. There's also no gimme-monster disrupting our peace, which makes me happy but is a little frustrating for gift-giving relatives who try to pry a wish list out of my kids, with little to no success because they have a hard time thinking of things that they want.

Most rewarding of all is that we've been able to maintain a focus on giving. There are modest handmade gifts in progress all over this house, with some already wrapped and under the tree or stashed in secret spots. And the thanks keep rolling in from the charities we support, including the VFW's collections (cookies and other items) for the troops, the Alzheimer's Association, the American Cancer Society, the Heifer Project, the American Red Cross' apheresis division, and our newest and largest single donation to date, Doctors Without Borders. This last one was spurred on by reading Mountains Beyond Mountains and then a message from the Yarn Harlot. Doctors Without Borders seemed to be the perfect link between something disturbing that's happening in the world and something we can do about it. I always thought Ben & Jerry's 1% for Peace policy was a very good thing and was thrilled to realize that in the past month or so we too have donated about 1% of our annual income to projects that are important to us (and that's just in the past 4-6 weeks, so we must have gone significantly higher than that for the year). Best of all, it's painless. No, it's not just painless; it's invigorating, empowering, motivating.

As a sign at Rose Island Lighthouse said, "The goal is to leave things better than you found them. Imagine if everybody in the world..." Posted by Picasa


Blogger JoVE said...

Your kids could really freak out the relatives by asking them to donate to their favourite charity on their behalf?

But if they must by "things", you could suggest gift certificates for craft supplies :-)

Keep on enjoying that relaxing holiday spirit.

10:03 AM  
Blogger April said...

Congratualtions on achieving the "true spirit". I know that our extended family members do not understand always when we say, "No material gifts are needed." Once again I thank you for your posts of "hope". You make me believe again that all can be well. There is good out there beyond the front door. Happy holidays to you and yours and best wishes for the new year!

2:46 AM  

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