Christmas spirit, what have you done?
Dec. 13, 2011 6:30 am
Updated: Dec. 20, 2011 3:26 am
I highly suggest to anyone, who may find a little extra time this season, to spend some time volunteering in you your community. I spent part of yesterday at the seniors lodge in town. I heard some great stories, shared much laughter and even a few tears.
We played checkers, cards and a version of bean bag toss. We sang songs, decorated the dining area and enjoyed a mid afternoon snack with all the wonderful people. I helped wrap some presents and sign a few cards with a few special gals.
Their stories of the depression, growing up without much other than love in the family, were very inspiring. The simple things in life made their day. In all the hustle and bustle I see around me with people trying to get ready for Christmas, I heard of stories
where they hustled just to stay warm. The idea of gift giving was taking a few baked goods or small bag of grain to the neighbours and spending time.
The days of singing with the family or attending a barn dance seem like a lifetime ago. The memories of the good old days and the harsh times are very real. Even in hard times when the family did not have a dime nor a hope for anything in the future, they
still found Christmas spirit and celebrated as best they could.
Many of the women were surprised to find that I make some of my own gifts and I shared our family traditions with them as well. (I even collected a few old family recipes-what can I say, I love to bake). I felt a closeness with many of our pioneers, their ways
and their beliefs.
I have been to the senior center on occasion over the years. I did not grow up in this area, these are parents and grandparents of many of my neighbours. Though their faces and names are different, they are the same neighbouring parents and grandparents who
encircled me as a child. I could see twinkles in their eyes as they recalled a memory of the past. They worked very hard but as all things in life, we seem to remember the good times.
As I was leaving, I was thanked over and over for spending the day with all. I could not thank them enough in return for allowing me to spend my day with them. I left with a great feeling and a tear. Maybe this was my ghost of Christmas present showing me
what life can be. With all the turmoil in the world, the economic roller coaster and so many people forgetting the true meaning of Christmas. This may have been my reminder of good things.
I hope you all take the time this Christmas to share a smile, a story or make a moment with someone around you.
Merry Christmas to all my AR friends.