Being a person of a certain age I grew up being greatly influenced by Jim Henson’s creations. And as such, I feel it my patriotic duty to share them with the world. So, hope you all have an absolutely wonderful 4th of July surrounded by family, friends, and all the things you hold dear. (And hopefully your day will be sprinkled with at least a little bit of laughter!)
I don’t know about you but my life hasn’t turned out quite the way I expected. I thought I’d have 6 or 7 kids by now and I imagined all the things we’d do to celebrate the holidays. Instead I’m stepmom to a teenage boy who doesn’t have the patience for most of the things I wish we could do, and when we don’t have him for the weekend it’s just the hubs and I. It’s hard to do a lot of the typical holiday things with just adults. So, I’ve spent a lot of the time in our short marriage trying to figure out family traditions for the 2-3 of us. And I definitely haven’t figured things out yet.
Mostly we experiment and everyone gives a wishy-washy review of whatever it is we’ve done that I’d hoped would be a winner, something we’d love and do again and again. But not so much. I find myself getting lazy about it all or worse, having a bad attitude about it all. It’s really been a struggle. So, I’m sending a plea out to the universe (particularly to you parents of teenagers or those of you without kids.) What are your family traditions? What do you do each year to create memories and cement bonds? I’d love to hear your ideas, and feel free to venture beyond Christmas traditions. I can’t wait to be inspired and start some amazing traditions with my little family!
There is always a need for more light in the world and I love when there are easy ways to help encourage us to do what we can every day. Yes, there are great big causes that need our help but sometimes those can seem a little overwhelming to get involved with, require too much time or commitment on our part, or the problems themselves just seem so big that one person can’t really make a difference (though I don’t believe that, it is very easy to feel that way!) But when you’ve got opportunities to help a neighbor or do something simple a little closer to home, often where you can see the difference you’ve made, sometimes that makes it a little easier.
The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (aka The Mormons) has created just such an initiative. Their advent calendar (Light the World) provides 25 days of ideas to spread the light of Christ, the spirit of Christmas, and make the world a little bit better along the way. Check it out! #LightTheWorld
And I’d love to hear about your own ways to serve or celebrate throughout the season. Any advent or countdown traditions? Give them a shout out in the comments below!
The grateful man sees so much in the world to be thankful for, and with him the good outweighs the evil. Love overpowers jealousy, and light drives darkness out of his life.
-Joseph F Smith
I love that we begin the holiday season with counting our blessings and giving thanks. I think it helps to put things into perspective and (ideally) sets us on a path toward charity and giving as we head towards Christmas.
I had the opportunity to spend time with the hubs’ family this year. We ventured north to Logan, a rural college town (go Aggies!) where the pace is slower and the air a bit fresher. Our holiday was perfectly chill with lots of food, great discussions and book recommendations, good movies and several walks around the neighborhood enjoying the splendors of nature. I’m so grateful for all of those things, pretty much all the favorites of my life. I hope your holiday was blessed and your plates full!
When I was living on the East Coast I had a friend who introduced me to the best holiday ever. Pie Day! Anyone who knows me knows that I love pie. I requested pies instead of cakes for my birthday for years and even served it at my wedding. It’s kind of my favorite.
Her version of pie day was a family affair. Tired of being too full to enjoy the pie after Thanksgiving dinner they decided to give it its rightful place as the center of attention a few days before, when there was still plenty of room in their bellies. So, the Sunday before Thanksgiving was dedicated to pies. The neighbors were invited and everyone shared their favorite flavors and when she moved to DC she shared the tradition with all of us. Since then, there have been several of us who have moved on but carried the tradition with us and this year the hubs and I celebrated our first Pie Day together.
We ended up with a dozen or so variations ranging from the traditional pumpkin and chocolate to cranberry pear, peanut butter, and snickerdoodle apple cream cheese (yes, that’s all one pie!) I think that’s the best part, getting introduced to so many fun new favorites. What’s your favorite kind of pie? Feel free to share a link to the recipe in the comments below!