I hope you are having a great day celebrating this special holiday. To me Christmas means tradition, family, friends, love and laughs. The times attempting to figure out the cryptic codes my in laws set up for our presents. The food, the conversation, the games we play once we open the presents (charades, penny poker, other board games).
Every time I get the chance to think about my childhood, I think back on the first time I got the chance to play a video game system (Atari 2600… everyone remember the primitive graphics?), the pleasure of having a tape walkman to bring my music anywhere I wanted to go and the laughter of watching National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation over my aunt and uncle’s house. The looks on certain family members faces when they open a gift they’ve been longing for all year long. I never cared about the amount of presents I got, or even how much was spent. I felt grateful to be given anything, as I never really felt the need to have the latest, biggest or best high ticket items.
I gain more appreciation when I see the looks on my daughters faces. The first Christmas my oldest lived with us, she had never seen the sheer amount of presents my wife and I provided for her. Yes we went a little overboard. But I don’t think she ever had quite a Christmas like that- and it’s a memory that sticks with her forever. Instead of asking for one or two items, we were able to provide her with a variety of clothes, games, and toys.
So don’t forget the spirit of giving, even more so on the other 364 days of the year. Give of yourself freely without any expectation of return. Give because you know it’s the right thing to do. Fill up the love meter for someone else who needs it. Volunteer where you can at your local food bank, a homeless shelter or another group that you feel deserves attention and your support. Together we can make a small impact that will build to a bigger impact on the world. Charity begins within your own mind, and then connects when you take action into your outside network.
One of my goals within 2010 is to spend at least one day per month volunteering to help others in some capacity. I’ll keep everyone posted on my progress and maybe we can pool our resources together to give wider support to the causes we believe are important.
In the meantime, enjoy the next 24 hours. Set aside any personal disagreements or beefs you may have and just enjoy yourself. Let everyone see your shining personality and good nature. Until next time, be good to yourself and others.