Happy Holidays

Well here it is, another Christmas is soon upon us. This year it will definitely be harder to celebrate due to my father-in-law’s death in July.  We would spend it with him and now it will just be the four of us here.  It will be sad as there will be one less setting at the table. But then again, with everything that has been happening lately, there are many households around the nation that will be feeling the same sorrow.  But that is not what I want to write about. There is enough heartache to go around lately.  I want to bring some holiday cheer, or at least try.

This is the festive time of year to enjoy time with loved ones.  It should not be about finding the ‘perfect’ gift because, let’s face it, there is no such thing.  Instead of making yourself anxious by fighting the crowds in the stores, the obnoxious snarls of traffic on the road, and the constant exhausting running around trying to do everything, just take some time to s-l-o-w down.  Please.  For the good of your family and for the good (and sanity) of yourself.

We don’t exchange gifts in my house any longer, and as a family we are good with that.  It might sound clichéd but I am happier just to spend time with my family, loving them and seeing their smiles and hearing their laughter.  I revel in it.  Life is so precious and, sadly many times, painfully short. Love those family members who are around you.  Stop focusing on what you are getting and instead do some giving:  of your time.

Some family members you only see around the holidays.  For some families it’s a time of warmth and blessing, and for others a living hell.  I can’t even begin to understand how some families can’t seem to get along, but I know that it happens. That’s so sad.  To struggle with forgiveness at this time of year must be incredibly hard to bear.  I pray that these families can find the strength to reconcile, to finally have peace in their lives and in their homes.

So come on, blast those old favorite Christmas carols, and belt them out as loud as you can.  My favorite has always been Nat King Cole.  He had a spectacular voice.  So calming, I think.  Have some eggnog, sans the rum if driving, please.  Be safe out there, dear friends.  Go to Christmas Eve service if you so choose.  Gather with other who worship the way that you do.  Always more awe-inspiring to share those precious times with like-minded people.  Exchange gifts.  Be thankful for each one,  even if it’s not the ‘perfect’ gift that you were expecting.  Have a wonderful hearty meal and save room for dessert.

Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays, whichever you prefer.  God bless you and protect you during this season.  May your hearts be light.  May your wishes and dreams all come true.  May love surround you and wrap you snugly.  May peace reign.  And,  if you are needing to or needing it, may forgiveness be given or found this precious season.

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