Monthly Archives: December 2015

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 11 1/2

Now’s the time to celebrate!

Day 11 1/2 – Gather your friends and family around you, eat drink and be merry!  Relax and enjoy this time together. It may be hectic, children running, dogs barking, cats hiding from these ridiculous humans…

Just soak it all in and laugh.

And now we say good-bye to you all and wish you the best this holiday, we are off to enjoy our families.

 

 

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 10 1/2

Music is one of the best ways to lift your spirits. You knew we were eventually going to go here didn’t you?

Day 10 1/2 – Caroling – We hesitate to suggest this as a way to lift your mood on the off-chance you might ask one of us to sing. Be forewarned, this would be a terrible mistake.

In MB’s childhood home, Holiday Sing-along with Mitch was big. We often watched the Mitch Miller Show and sang along to the bouncing red ball. The thing is we didn’t sing well. We had a lot of fun though.

Mitch Miller

Must Be Santa was a big hit with us, even today we all sing along when we hear it.

Mitch Miller – Must Be Santa 

For our children, it was the Muppets Christmas with John Denver or Disney Sing Along

John Denver Muppets Disney Sing Along

John Denver & The Muppets – Christmas is Coming

Caroling with family is a great deal of fun. Be forgiving of those who can’t necessarily carry a tune but wish to take part, encourage those that can sing to lead and let your music ring out.

As our children matured, their tastes in carols changed a bit. And they cringed a lot when their parents sang-along.

B2m-christmas-interp

BoyzIIMen Silent Night

Sinatra

Frank Sinatra Jingle Bells

If you really can’t bring yourself to sing in a group, then go to one of the free caroling events in your area. Karaoke anyone? Whether you Sing, Hum or Lip Sync, try caroling to keep the merry in Christmas this year.

singing-christmas-reindeer-wallpapers-680958

Be sure to click on the links and sing along!

 

 

 

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 9 1/2

We often wish that our parents and grandparents had kept a written account of their childhood for future generations.

Day 9 1/2 – Write – Our 12 Days of Christmas are written to help you find serenity during this hectic holiday season. Keeping a diary is a wonderful way to not only reflect back on your day and express gratitude but to preserve your history for future generations.

Our advice would be to keep a separate piece of paper nearby if you feel the need to vent, then destroy it just as soon as you’re done. No need to save that for prosperity’s sake.

The journal should include names, whether they are a friend or a relative, dates and the experiences you shared.

Goats and Christmas Train

We’d love to know how our childhood Christmases were different from our grandmothers.

I know that my parents grew up during the Great Depression so they usually received a hand-carved toy, rarely was it painted. On really good years they also received an orange. I don’t know if anyone came to visit, what they had for Christmas dinner, if Santa Claus was a fixture in their childhood.

Mom as Santa

Writing about everything you are grateful for helps improve your attitude.

Purchase a beautifully bound journal, have everyone in the family write a memory in it, add a few pictures, pass it down through the generations. Or start a private family blog where everyone can add their memories. Family members can read it anytime they like.

Documenting your family history is a truly a gift that keeps on giving.

 

 

 

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 8 1/2

It’s a time of holiday cheer and partying with those you hold near and dear, noise is all around us. As we head down the home stretch, take a little time to enjoy the silence.

Day 8 1/2 – Silence – Silence is a gift we rarely get to enjoy at any time of the year. During the holidays, finding time for a little silence seems crucial.

Silence gives us an opportunity to unwind, to de-stress. Turning off the TV, stereo and phone, blocking out outside noise is a blessing we should all give to ourselves.

When my children were younger we would gather in the living room with only the lights of the Christmas tree on, find a comfortable place to sit or lay down, relax and contemplate.

Being silent doesn’t actually have to be meditation, it can be prayer, reflection, or simply breathing.  Practicing yoga in silence is lovely.

Sitting in silence, holding the hand of a loved one is not only soothing but healing. It creates a strong bond between you. It transmits the energy of love.

One of our favorite ways to sit in silence is around a campfire, the crackle of the fire keeps us aware, the dancing flames keep our eyes focused but relaxed. The smell of the campfire can conjure up old memories, the warmth calms us.

There is a full moon on Christmas Day, if it’s not too chilly, try sitting outside in silence, bathed in its light.

Try silence if you can, for us it brings a more individualized meaning to peace on earth.

 

 

 

 

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 7 1/2

Today is the last Saturday before Christmas to shop. It’s going to be crazy out there. We’ll keep it short and simple today so you can get on with it. 😉

Day 7 1/2 – Random Acts of Kindness – whether it’s holding the door open for someone or allowing the over-burdened person in line behind you to go first, acts of kindness will brighten your day just as much as it will theirs.

No Act

Giving a stranger one of your smiles may be all it takes to improve their day, adding a compliment would be icing on the cake.

Researching this blog we came across this site – RAKing.  We haven’t printed the cards as they suggest yet but we are practicing what they preach.

raked-biz-card1

The world is an uncertain place. Kindness makes it feel safer. Anita Rodrick said “The end result of kindness is that it draws people to you.” and “If I can’t do something for the public good, then what the hell am I doing?” Both of these quotes say it all.

The-end-result-of-kindness-is-that-it-draws-people-to-you No Act

Isn’t this what Santa is all about? Giving, otherwise defined as kindness?

This holiday season spread kindness as far as you can. Please share with us your acts of kindness. We welcome new ways to practice RAKing.

the-highest-wisdom-is-kindness

The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 6 1/2

As is usually the case during the holiday season, I got so busy yesterday with my day jobs, shuttling back and forth to the airport and celebrating my birthday that Day 6’s blog got lost in the shuffle. So welcome to Day 6 and 1/2!

Day 6 1/2 – Game Night – This has long been a tradition in my family although we don’t limit it to Christmas. We starting having game night when I was just a child. My mother bought a game called Tripoley, popped up a big batch of popcorn, and taught us to play.

Tripoley

Game night has evolved through the years, we have had marathon nights of Risk where the last 2 players were still competing the next morning while everyone else had fallen asleep. We have tried quite a few new games and added a few to the regular mix.  Two of our current favorites are Telestrations and Camel Up Supercup.  Telestrations had us laughing so hard we had tears in our eyes.

Telestrations Camel Up

Game night is a great way to de-tress, stop focusing on the things that need to be done during the holidays and reconnect with loved ones. Enjoy those fresh-baked Christmas cookies from The Twelve Days of Christmas – Day 3  while engaging in some friendly competition. Be ready to laugh, tease and create some great memories.

We are always open to new ideas, what board games do you recommend?

Let the games begin!