By AFWA National President, Lori Kelley, CPA
This is my most favorite time of the year. I absolutely love the Thanksgiving and Christmas season. It is a season of gratefulness, goodwill and giving; of hope, serving others and anticipation. I enjoy all the trappings that come with Christmas – the music, the decorations, the food. There is such a warm sense of nostalgia for me, through the entire holiday season.
Christmas can also be a very stressful time of year, as well. Do not get caught up in all that! No one ever won an award for attending the most Christmas parties, sending out the most Christmas cards, making the most Christmas candies or buying the most presents. Simplify and slow down! Review your holiday to-do list and determine why you are doing, what you are doing! Does it bring value or genuine happiness to you or someone else? If it doesn’t, you need to re-evaluate that chore! Let’s look at how we celebrate this joyous season and make sure it is meaningful and not an energy sucker.
Through the years, my perspective on Christmas has changed. I certainly enjoy giving and receiving presents, but the spirit of Christmas is so much more. And the state of the world today drives that home to me, every day. One of my favorite Christmas songs is “My Grown-Up Christmas List”. It chokes me up every time I listen to it. It captures the beauty of Christmas and what it is really all about. Take a moment to reflect while reading these stanzas:
Do you remember me?
I sat upon your knee.
I wrote to you with childhood fantasies.
Well, I’m all grown up now,
And still need help somehow
I’m not a child, but my heart still can dream.
As children we believe,
The grandest sight to see,
Was something lovely wrapped beneath the tree.
But Heaven only knows,
That packages and bows,
Can never heal a heart-ached human soul.
So here’s my lifelong wish,
My grown up Christmas list.
Not for myself, but for a world in need.
No more lives torn apart,
That wars would never start,
And time would heal all hearts
And everyone would have a friend
And right would always win
And love would never end, no
This is my grown up Christmas list.
This year, go out and be a Christmas blessing to someone else – let it start with you! Celebrate in a meaningful way that brings joy to your heart and happiness to you and yours.
Merry Christmas and a Blessed New Year!
“My Grown Up Christmas List”, composed by David Foster(music) and Linda Thompson-Jenner (lyrics)