Does your family celebrate a December light holiday (Christmas, Hanukkah, Winter Solstice, Kwanzaa or something else)? How do you usually celebrate? How do you see your celebration being different in 2020? Do you see any new traditions or ways of celebrating coming? Do you have some great ideas for socially distant celebrations?
I am looking for reader contributions for December. It does not have to be lengthy — around 500 words is fine. We cannot pay but will include a short bio and link to your website with the article.
Our word angel comes from the Greek ἄγγελος. It means messenger. I will always think of this with a smile remembering a fellow seminary student in Greek class who happened to be named Angel beaming and exchanging laughter with the professor about the appropriateness of his name.
I do believe in God’s holy angels who are sent to be messengers of God’s love, care and sometimes judgement. I have had personal encounters with angels.
But I do also believe that we are also called to be messengers of Gods light, love and care to each other. This is not reserved for pastors or those studying to become pastors. We all do this by the way we live and care for others.
Especially during this season be sure you reflect God’s love and light and spread it around. I love angel crafts and have included a few links below if you want to share God’s love and light by giving handmade angels. If you are interested in Greek I have a reference for that too.
Take time during the holiday to create a tangible reminder of the blessings in your life. A gratitude tree may be made using a tree branch you bring inside. Try to use a branch that that has fallen on it’s own. Write things you are grateful for on leaves cut from paper, create a hanger using yarn or string and hang from the branch. Or tie ribbons to a tree or branch.
You could also turn your Christmas tree into a gratitude tree. Or save a tree and tie your blessings to a live tree in your yard. You can add blessing as you think of them and see how they add up or create a special blessing ceremony with readings, songs, prayers, poems or other things you find meaningful.
Of course this is a good activity to use with children. But don’t we all need to stop and remember how blessed we truly are?
This is the season when people like to come together. We smile at people we meet on the street. We may even say hello or offer a holiday greeting. We host and/or attend parties, family dinners and other social events. Why can’t we do these things online? Well, I think we can, soooo…..
On this Sunday before American Thanksgiving I am hosting an online gathering to give bloggers a chance to meet each other and visit each others blogs. I think this will be fun, but for it to work people need to participate. How?
Reply to this blog post answering one of the following questions: What is one thing you are grateful for? or What holiday do you observe during November or December and how do you celebrate?
Please also give a link to your blog so we can visit. Only family friendly blogs please.
Re-blog this post on your blog and invite others to join us.
Please visit at least two of the other bloggers who post links here and say hello. “Like” something on their blog or leave a comment to let them know you were there. Follow their blog if you like. If you want to visit everyone, go for it!
Did I forget anything?
So what I am grateful for? My wonderful blog followers and new friends and followers who are yet to come.
The holidays are approaching and many people with food restrictions are dreading the holiday dinner. When people talk about this they often use the word “surviving” but with careful thought and planning it is possible to actually enjoy the holiday meal.
These are my suggestions for ways to actually enjoy the holiday meal, even with food restrictions:
Take you best positive attitude.
Focus on being with family and friends rather than the food.
Eat a light meal or snack before you go just in case you end up with only salad.
Take responsibility for your own food needs rather than depending on others to feed you.
Consider hosting the family meal yourself.
If going to another’s home talk to the hostess in advance.
Take a dish (or two) of something you can eat to share.
Have food to eat that is comparable to the family meal. No sitting in the corner nibbling on a Lara bar while every else chows down on turkey.
If the full meal is too much to handle show up after the meal with the family album, family stories or your most wickedly delightful gluten free dessert to share.
This is one of those times it really isn’t about the food. Time passes so fast. People change, they move away and yes, they even die. Don’t squander precious opportunities to enjoy being with friends and family. Go to the family dinner prepared, give Grandma a big hug and most of all have a good time. Yes, it is still possible.
Today is celebrated as Martin Luther King Jr. Day. Dr. King’s actual birthday was January 15.
Bob and I recently say the movie The Butler. I don’t usually cry at movies but tears were streaming down my face the entire time. Since then I have been thinking about the young people today who did not live before or during the Civil Rights Movement. It is important that we teach them, that we show them how far we have come and stress how important it is to keep moving forward and never go back. According to the King Center website “the King Library and Archives in Atlanta is the largest repository of primary source materials on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. and the American Civil Rights Movement in the world.” To learn about this important time in our history http://www.thekingcenter.org/ is a good place to start.
“Christmas – that magic blanket that wraps itself about us, that something so intangible that it is like a fragrance. It may weave a spell of nostalgia. Christmas may be a day of feasting, or of prayer, but always it will be a day of remembrance – a day in which we think of everything we have ever loved.” ~Augusta E. Rundel