For those who missed it, the above title is a sigh. The Thanksgiving meal has become a recent memory and the turkey an ugly carcass and the next Holiday meal with all the trimmings will be fixed by my son-in-law and daughter while I spoil those terrific grandsons of our’s.
I have the Holiday gifts purchased wrapped and mailed, and I am down to charitable giving. We purchased the car that we will be revisiting America in while we travel both Canada and the U.S.A. My husband is a tall man so it is always a challenge to find something that is tall enough to give him the head and leg room he needs, that is comfortable for me, and that I no longer have to use a running board to step on to pull myself into the vehicle.
Lucky me that the market is flooded with Japanese and Korean vehicles that are made for the 5 foot 8 or under people and the taller Americans appear to get the smaller American sedans appear to become, due to all the added technology. We have never purchased a vehicle not made in the U.S.A., and probably never will. The only vehicle that fit our qualifications was the Mercedes-Benz SUV.
The American-made pick ups,suv’s, and custom vans fit my husband’s size and we have had our share of them, but they require me to step on a footstool or to swing my leg up on the running board and then to pull myself up and I am hurting before I even leave home, since my health problem is as compounded in the arms as it is the legs. We feel somewhat justified buying the Mercedes since it is made in Alabama, and you do what needs to be done.
Some people on the internet and Facebook, that seem to think it their job, have done their number on degrading the Chevy Volt, that was one vehicle that caught on fire when it was put through rigorous test results that would not happen with normal driving, and the Mercedes-Benz SUV because 8,700 vehicles had their floor mats recalled because of the potential of it sticking under the gas pedal.
I have no idea what drives people to downgrade others who have their best interests at heart, much less vehicles, but the Chevy Volt even got a dressing down by the Fox news panel even though it is the model other Countries are copying in order to catch up with its technology. It is almost impossible to get lost,killed, or bored in today’s fully loaded vehicles if we follow the speed limits, do not get caught in a pile up due to bad drivers and weather, or do not meet drunk drivers, regardless of where they are made.
I need to send out very few Christmas cards yet and the decorations and the lights were up and went on Thanksgiving night. We needed to stay at the Kids’ house as it was their turn for the other side of the Family for Thanksgiving, and we bought the SUV across the river from where they live but a distance from our own home. My husband got sick from shell-fish and we were grateful that they extended us the offer. Their cats were as well and they got a nice airing out of it.
It was a delight to see their tree up and lights strung as well. I learned years ago that the weeks before Thanksgiving run as good of sales as the stores do after Thanksgiving,because often they need to attract buyers worse before Thanksgiving than they do after. Any time I can get 40% off across the board and not fight the crowds or stand in line, it is worth shopping early. I understand that many wait for their bonus but since I pay my credit card off during the year I do not feel bad paying a little interests until the bonus is paid.
The Christmas Season or Holiday Season has always been my favorite time of year. If I stay away from the grumpy or harassed Christmas shoppers who are shopping on Black Friday or the last-minute, I never have to see the dark side of the Holidays. The generosity of the majority of Americans shown during the Holiday Season is always amazing and almost magical to me. It is not an easy task to remember all those who we share our thoughts,prayers,cash, and gifts with during the Season. When we add the meals and goodies anyone who can, do, and we see the best of mankind all around us, how can we not be inspired by the graciousness of the American people? Why anyone would resent or hate the Season is beyond me, but many do.
The complainers totally over look the generous spirit of the Christmas Season and instead complain that Christmas has become too commercial. Those who are members of a Religion, such as The 7th Day of Adventist, even refer to the mention of Santa as being sinful and deny all mention of his name in their home,totally disregarding the fact that Santa comes from the name of Saint Nickolas who was admired for his spirit of giving. Children in these Religions are never able to celebrate beyond attending Church and being reminded of the Christ child. I do not criticize those who truly believe as they do or their right to do so.
My own personal experience with the complainers has not been so much that they themselves resented giving as it was that they felt cheated on the Holidays when they were children,felt to give to children meant they would be spoiled and lose the meaning of Christmas, felt they should be receiving and not giving to their children,were too drunk on alcohol or drugged out to care, or felt giving to children left their bank accounts lower.
I understand the difficulty of the Season if we have lost a loved one since the memories of past Holidays can sadden all of us, if they are all alone, do not have a job, or cannot afford to buy the gift the children want from Santa, but often times these are not the people who chronically complain about the Holidays. Many of them learn to seek out others who share their pain or learn the healing power of bringing joy to others brings to them. Others are also the grateful ones, since they end up on the receiving line of American generosity just as our family members do, when they too will accept the love given at Christmas time. I grew up under the roof with one of the chronic complainers at Christmas time and I was determined to reverse the cycle by compensating for my loss by being generous instead.
We, who love the Season, are all driven by some time or memory of our own or by our spiritual beliefs of Christ’s birth to do a little extra for those we sometimes spend too much time forgetting during the rest of the year. I know people who will leave their Christmas lights up year around as a reminder to themselves to treat others the same during the year, as they do during the Holiday Season. Some people keep their decorations up until their loved ones return home from military duty. Others work in soup Kitchens while others deliver packages to those who have not fared as well during the year. The joy on the children’s faces are thanks enough to those of us who share our good fortune with others during the Holiday Season. Neighbors often bring baked goodies to the shut ins or sing Christmas carols each year,while others send or bring good will and cheer to those they have not seen or heard from, for years.
Even though I have been through many other Christmases, I am still touched by the magic that changes each of us, just for a while at least, when we remember why we celebrate the Holidays. Since no one knows for certain the real date of Christmas,some how, I do not feel like Christ minds too much when or how we celebrate the spirit of giving in His memory, since He instructed all of us to love each other and to love our neighbors as ourselves. Sadly, to often we need the Holidays to remember that which we should know all year; Just as much as we need to be reminded to be grateful for what we have, for our lives, and our loved ones. If it takes commercial means to remind some that it isn’t the things that we buy but instead the spirit of giving out of love that we pass on to others in the form of a gift to cheer them, that matters,or it takes the same reminder to donate to worthy causes, is that really so bad?
As much as I love the Season I can’t help but breathe a sigh of relief knowing that most of my work of the Season has been completed and now I can stay inside for a while and enjoy the snow from our recent storm, light a fire if I feel like it, and listen to my favorite Christmas music. AHHhhhh!