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The Year Without A Santa Claus

Heat Miser?  Snow miser?  Mother Nature?  Mrs. Claus?  Jingle and Jangle the elves along with Vixen the little reindeer who they pretend is a dog?

Does any of that ring a bell for you?  A little twinkle of nostalgia?  A little song in your heart?  It sure does to mine!

So on a Tuesday morning, let’s keep the holiday spirit bright with a little nostalgia!  And just for the record, a white Christmas would be perfect for me!

Shine On!

xo

A Charlie Brown Christmas

ABC's "Charlie Brown"

Does this photo bring back memories of watching A Charlie Brown Christmas?  It does for me!  I love those old shows and I always watch them during the Christmas season.  That tree always makes me smile when I see it because it’s such a good reminder to keep Christmas simple and not fraught with commercialism.

8And there were in the same country shepherds abiding in the field, keeping watch over their flock by night.
9And, lo, the angel of the Lord came upon them, and the glory of the Lord shone round about them: and they were sore afraid.
10And the angel said unto them, Fear not; for, behold, I bring you tidings of great joy, which shall be to all people.
11For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Savior, which is Christ the Lord.
12And this shall be a sign unto you: Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.
13And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying,
14Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace and goodwill towards men.”

Linus then walks over to Charlie Brown and says, “That’s what Christmas is all about, Charlie Brown.”

When I was looking for a photo for the post today, I found it here along with some fun facts about the movie!    Don’t forget to sing along at the end,

Enjoy!

Shine On!

xo

 

Thanksgiving Blessings

thanksgivingblessings

“Not what we say about our blessings,
but how we use them,
is the true measure
of our thanksgiving.”
~ W.T. Purkiser

On this Thanksgiving morning, let me reach out to wish you all a day filled with love, with blessings, with gratitude and with being surrounded by loved ones.  Be more patient today.  Be kinder today.  Be loving today.  Be grateful for all the goodness in your life – from the biggest to the smallest of blessings!

Happy Blessed Thanksgiving to all!

Shine On!

xo

 

A Giggle Before Thanksgiving

agigglebeforethanksgiving

If you’re anything like me, you’re stressed out now with the start of the holiday season.  Thanksgiving is a tough holiday to prepare for and even though this year, I’m not cooking the bird, I have a few dishes to prepare for the meal at my sister’s house.  It should be fun this year as our Mom is going to be with us too which just makes me smile.  I want to take lots of photos and videos of her with all of us.  As our parents get older, it’s important to do that you know.  Every single moment and memory is precious and sometimes it’s only after, in hindsight, that we regret we didn’t do more.  So, I’m working hard to live with no regrets!

Anyway, I was thinking about decorating for Christmas because I always began after the Thanksgiving dinner was put away.  I started slowly at first, but often, I was well on my way by Sunday.  I can’t help myself!  I LOVE CHRISTMAS!

I came across the clever video below and laughed my way through it.  What a great stress reliever and giggle maker!  If you like animals, please click below and get into the Christmas mood.  You know, it’s almost time to Deck The Halls!

Shine On!

xo

 

Sludge Through Monday Morning?

sludge

I like Mondays as it’s the start of the new week and there’s much optimism in a new week’s adventures.  I know typically people feel like they are sludging through Monday mornings, but not me.  Maybe it’s just my personality, but to me, it’s a new beginning, like the start of school in September!

But this week can be particularly stressful since Thanksgiving is on Thursday.  All of the last minute preparations for the big feast can wear on those who are hosting the event for family.  Let’s face it, that all-encompassing dinner is a lot to prepare, even for the most seasoned cooks.  Sometimes the stress of being with family is hard too.  Lucky for me, I’m not hostessing this year, so I’m a bit more relaxed.  For those of you who are, well, I’m sending you lots of strength, patience and a delicious meal and well-behaved guests!

This week kicks off the holiday season with Thanksgiving, then Black Friday shopping and the Christmas season coming up.  I find it to be invigorating myself, but maybe I’m an anomaly.   How are you feeling?

I hope you have a lovely week and that today brings a skip in your step and not the dragging of feet.  Keep shining your heartlights and I’ll send you mine!

Shine On!

xo

 

Sandwich Generation

sandwichgeneration

Have you ever heard of the sandwich generation?  It’s when you are a parent who takes care of your own children and your own parents at the same time.  Sandwiched in between the generations and responsible for them all at the same time.  At least, that’s my attempt at its definition.

I should know…I’ve been doing it for awhile now.

I have friends who are beginning the journey of helping their elderly parents and it’s hard.  Hard for the parents to let go and to allow their children to help them and hard for all to realize that life is imminently shorter than we plan for when we are young.  The changes that occur as our parents get older are sometimes unimaginable and hard for them and for us to fathom and navigate.  I mean, what parent ever wants to give up control to their children?  We are the parents after all. (said in the parental authoritative voice!)

But it happens.  If we’re lucky to still have our parents and our children be able to have a relationship (and if we still have a good relationship with our parents as well), please remember to feel blessed.  Because sometimes as the years go on, family difficulties interfere and our relationships deteriorate.

But in a perfect world, we may be blessed to take care of our parents as they took care of us.  This goes for anyone really in the older generations, the aunts and uncles, the older cousins, etc.

So can I give you a little advice especially now that Thanksgiving and the holiday season are arriving?

  1. Do your best to include them.  Make the effort to go get them to bring them to the family get togethers if they are close enough.
  2. Make them feel important.
  3. Watch to see how they are doing physically, mentally and emotionally.
  4. You are now the caretaker so be aware of subtle changes and if you see some, gently approach the subject.
  5. Get Mom’s favorite recipes now while she remembers them.
  6. Take pictures!  I can’t stress this enough!  Get photos of the family together.
  7. Video tape them telling stories or singing or whatever memory you want to keep.  Someday you may wish you could hear their voices again or remember how they sang their favorite song or danced the watusi!
  8. Be patient.  Getting older is not for sissies and they are doing the best they can.
  9. Role model kindness because your children they will remember how you treated your family.
  10. Be affectionate with them if that’s your family style.  There’s nothing better than taking that extra moment to hug a parent or family member.  They will appreciate it as will you.
  11. Tell them how much you care and love them.  During Thanksgiving you can give thanks to them for all that they did for you.
  12. Include them in favorite memories that showcase their love.
  13. Be aware that as we get older, it gets harder to remember, to move and to hear other people.
  14. Take the precious time to talk with them and to ask and to listen attentively to whatever they have to say.
  15. Try not to put them in the corner and out of the way if they don’t want that because keeping them actively involved helps them immensely.
  16. Be kinder as you won’t ever regret it later.
  17. Take it all in stride and be patient with yourself as well.
  18. Smile and know in your heart you are doing a great job.
  19. Count your blessings that they are still here to spend time with you.
  20. Enjoy each and every moment for life goes by in a flash!

I wish you all a wonderful holiday season!  I am thankful for my Mom and for those in the older generations of our family.  Having loved ones pass away in the last few years has been hard and I pray that you will keep in mind that every moment spent together is precious.

Shine On!

xo

 

Join Me and Salute The Veterans

veterans

The military has always been a small part of my life.  My Dad was a Navy man.  He and my Mom met at an Army/Navy game.  All three of my Mom’s brothers served as U.S. Marines and one in the Army.  Multiple cousins and extended family have served in the military as well.  I have friends who are veterans and others who are in active duty.  Now the next generation has arrived and I pray for the friends of my sons who have chosen to be a part of the military branches.  I now have ties to Air Force Rangers, Navy Seals, Army, Navy, Air Force, Marines and Coast Guard.

I remember wearing a POW (Prisoner of War) bracelet as a young girl.  I asked my Dad for one as he wore one and had explained to me why he wore his.  I wanted to show my support for the man who was missing and his family.  I still have it somewhere and now that I’m older, I need to find out if he was ever found.

Today I salute all those who are a part of our military and their families.  From my heart, I thank you for your service and I don’t take lightly what you have sacrificed for all of us.  The unimaginable atrocities that you have witnessed and experienced sadden me.  I can’t begin to imagine the unfathomable knowledge that you may keep inside and yet you are still here.  I admire your unbreakable spirit and commitment.  I know that what you have gone through may have changed you in ways we civilians cannot even begin to understand.  I have witnessed how the human spirit can be broken irrevocably and my heart goes out to you.

Years ago, I attended many military functions due to invites via work.  I met so many amazing men and women who were in the military and I was always honored when they shared their stories with me.  I never forgot to thank them for their service to our country.  Their calling to be a part of the military was evident and even though I have never felt that calling, I admire their willingness to be a part of it, to proudly stand for what they believe in and to sacrifice themselves for our country’s freedom.

In my heart, mind and soul, I wish we had no need for militia and that peace would reign throughout our planet Earth.  But that doesn’t seem possible in my lifetime, nor in the lifetime of my children unless we all commit to unconditional love prevailing.  Oh what a miracle that would be, don’t you think?

Today, please take a moment to say a prayer for all of the Veterans, those in active duty and those who have lost lives and spirits.  We appreciate you and your families.  We honor your commitments and we hold you tenderly in our hearts.  May God Bless Us All.

Shine On!

xo