Christmas gift suggestions:

To give yourself:  unconditional love & acceptance; a push towards your greater potential and a commitment to always give more than you receive

To give your parents:  love, honor, compassion and forgiveness

To give your partner:  love, compassion, patience, and trustDr Holly Christmas presents

To give your children:  love, compassion, direction

To give your friends: a listening ear, a shoulder to cry out, a pat on the back and kick in the butt when necessary

Henry van Dyke:    Are you willing to forget what you have done for other people, and to remember what other people have done for you; to ignore what the world owes you, and to think what you owe the world; to put your rights in the background, and your duties in the middle distance, and your chances to do a little more than your duty in the foreground; to see that your fellow-people are just as real as you are, and try to look behind their faces to their hearts, hungry for joy; to own that probably  the only good reason for your existence is not what you are going to get out of life, but what you are going to give to life; to close your book of complaints against the management of the universe, and look around you for a place where you can sow a few seeds of happiness–are you willing to do these things even for a day?  Then you can keep Christmas.

Mary Ellen Chase:  “Christmas, children, is not a date. It is a state of mind. ”

My thoughts:   What does Christmas mean to you?  Is it a time of year where there is a lot of socializing?  Do you connect Christmas with a time for baking and eating all kinds of treats?  Is Christmas associated with a time when all the children act in their school and church plays?   Perhaps a time of year, when you watch all your special movies.   For some it is a time of the year to celebrate the birth of Jesus – despite the fact that most agree he was not born on December 25th.  But the day perhaps isn’t as important as what the day represents.  Or perhaps, a time when you go dancing with friends or perhaps sit in front of the fire with a good book?  Maybe for you, it is a time when you go on a holiday and “get away from it all”.  Or perhaps it is a time when you volunteer and help the needy.  Or perhaps you associate it with a time when you bring out all the boxes of decorations for the home and for the tree?  What does Christmas mean to you?

For many, Christmas is a time of debt.  Or a time of stress and anxiety.  For some it is a time of year associated with hurt, pain and disappointment.  Or perhaps even anger.  For some, Christmas is a time when a loved person did not show up or some other disappointment that weighed heavily on the heart.

What does Christmas mean for you?  What if we were to think of Christmas as an attitude rather than a season?  What if Christmas referred to the way we live our lives as opposed to a day where we exchanged gifts?  We could then look at Christmas as someone who gave more than what they took.  Or a person who lived their life looking for what they can give as opposed to what they can get.  What if living Christmas meant living your life as though it were a gift from the gods, or from the universe, or from your higher self.

Charles Dickens was noted for saying “I will honor Christmas in my heart, and try to keep it all year.”  If we actually kept Christmas all year, what would that mean to you?  What would your attitude be day in and day out?  How would you treat those around you?  Not just your friends but even your enemies?  What would your first thoughts be every morning when you first wake up?  Would you celebrate the day and all those around you?

As you move through the day working in your job or profession or career – how would you approach your duties and responsibilities, your colleagues, your boss or employees?

If you lived your life in the spirit of Christmas, what gifts would you give?  Time, effort, affection, a listening ear, hospitality, a shoulder to lean on, kind words of compassion?  I put out to everyone, to take time this year to think of what it would be like for YOU to live the Christmas spirit all year.  How can you make this year the most special year you have ever lived because you chose to live the Christmas Spirit not just during a few days in December, but rather you lived with the Christmas spirit all year round.  What if you made your New Year’s resolution to live Christmas for the whole year?

I wish for you that this winter, you don’t catch the flu but rather you catch the Christmas Spirit…and that you can’t take oil of oregano or a tincture or a formula to get rid of it, but rather that it permeates your whole being and you get the opportunity to live the rest of your life with the love and compassion and joy of the Christmas Spirit