Category Archives: “The Christmas Heart”

December Wonders

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Making your spirits bright and your home fires warm,

makes me think of our Winter’s blustery cold and the

upcoming holidays. There are several directions your

faiths and belief systems may go- Kwanzaa, Chanukah,

Christmas or other ways. You may not be living in a cold

climate, you may be in the exact opposite of my location,

being greeted daily with warm sunshine, gentle breezes.

Wherever you are, I try to write a monthly newsletter to

keep up with various customs, cultures and faiths.

Please feel free to add in the comments section, a special

family tradition to make this interactive and meaningful.

 

Thomas Kinkade’s ‘healthy habits’ message for December is:

“Take care of your body, keeping your

body running the way it is supposed to

can be effective in lifting your spirits.”

(12/2001)

In a December issue of Prevention Magazine,

there was a list of “7 Foods to Keep You Healthy.”

I took the list and added a few personal favorite

ways to use these in the Season of Peace:

1. Eating almonds over the holidays will add some

much needed Vitamin E.

2. Serving different peas or beans, not only add

extra fiber to our diets, fill you up more, but also

give you a great source of Zinc.

3. The special addition to carrots, sweetens your

salads or grated can be added to various casseroles

(even mac and cheese), along with Vitamin A.

4. Mushrooms, cooked or raw give you Selenium.

They can be used in dips, stuffed caps or in gravies.

5. Drinking tea, either black or green, boosts your

antioxidants. Over a warming cup of tea, sprinkle a

dash of cinnamon or nutmeg to create some festive

flavorings.

6. Tomatoes give you Vitamin C, which can be so great

at fighting off colds. I like to have them in salads, but

also enjoy the way you can stuff them with crushed

croutons and Italian flavorings. Nutritionists advise

heating tomatoes releases more of its healing power.

7. Yogurt, which you can include in desserts, sauces and

dips gives you those probiotics that we all need, especially

as we get older.

 

DECEMBER

Birthstone:  Turquoise or blue peridot gemstone

Flower: Narcissus

I think of Poinsettias, when I think of December.

 

There are so many new and old books of Christmas,

along with other December holidays. This is a book

which can bridge any personal choices: “Rabbit’s Gift,”

by George Shannon and Laura Dronzek

(Harcourt Children’s Books) Snowfall, blue skies with

the beautiful effect of snowflakes and a message of hope.

 

December 6-

Full Cold Moon.

Full Night’s Moon.

 

December 7-

Pearl Harbor Day

and

Remembrance Day:

Wherever you live, take some moments to

honor your heroes. Those who serve and

protect us and our freedoms deserve our

meditation and gratitude.

 

“Believe in a Higher Being.

Believe in others and yourself.

Believe in miracles and wonders.”

(Author Unknown)

 

December 14- Quarter Moon.

 

15- Bill of Rights Day.

 

December 16th (sundown)- 24th:

Happy Hanukkah!

 

18-

This is the 50th anniversary of the Pink Panther

theatrical short featuring Pink Panther harassing

his foil/enemy. These characters are the creations

of Fritz Freleng. This won the 64th Academy Award

presentations in the department of “Animated Shorts.”

 

Definitely, this is a reminder that December is the time

to enjoy, laugh and be playful. Pink Panther was so silly

and fun.

 

22- New Moon.

 

December 25th- Christmas Day.

Many religions celebrate Christ’s Birth,

Rejoice and Follow the Stars wherever your faith

takes you.

“December is a time

of celebration and joy.

A time of promises kept

and Love reborn.”

~ Flavia, 2003.

 

26th- First Day of Kwanzaa.

This is a festive celebration of African American

community, culture and faith. This continues

until January first.

Boxing Day- Canada, U.K., Australia and NZ.

 

Many people shop for the following holiday

season (2015), finding bargains and gifts for

the coming year.

 

28- First Quarter Moon.

 

December 31st-

New Year’s Eve.

“Another fresh new year is here. . .

Another year to live.

To banish worry, doubt and fear,

To love, laugh and give.”

~ William Arthur Ward

(American Writer, 1921-1994)

 

May you and your family enjoy many experiences of

happiness. This final month of the year arrived far

too quickly! I hope you find ways to make December

stretch, savoring these special moments. Include some

meditation to help you to relax and not get too stressed.

For me, nostalgia arrives as I take out the ornaments

and decorations of Christmas past.

May this lovely time of year fill your senses with joy and

wonder in the simple things.

Most of all, wishing all of you to experience feelings of

Hope and Peace.

 

 

 

Listening to Carols

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We were at my son’s house with (I am not kidding!) 11 kids

under 12 running around, listening to Christmas Carols. We

adults each mentioned our favorites. They are revealing in their

variety and how they fit almost perfectly each person.

I would like to say the one that will inspire me to make a new

resolution: “The Little Drummer Boy” (I especially  like Nat

King Cole singing it.)

Why this song? Because we all have gifts or talents to give.

We all have things that are inside of us that sometimes we

do share, sometimes we hide and sometimes we still need to

discover them.

I think the point of the song is Christian but the way I like it

best to be read in this post is: Whoever or whatever you love,

believe in or seek for serenity let them know by your sharing

your special gifts.

I would like to make this a universal resolution. It might bring

peace, it may bring joy, it would bring Hope surely, it would!

I will meditate or contemplate every day in 2013 how I can be

more giving, more thoughtful, more outside of myself and it

will be amazing how this will take my worries and anxieties

away.

Lastly, I think we all believe that we are good inside, but we

don’t always believe what we can do will make a difference.

My mother was wonderful as a teacher, later a substitute and

a tutor. She was a good neighbor and she is still one of the

sweetest women I have met. But one thing she never envisioned

herself doing was taking her 2 dogs to a nursing home.

She walked into one the year my Dad passed away, 2001, and went

to the front desk, she asked to talk to a social worker. She said, “I

brought my 2 dogs, Cassie and Nicki, with their shots records and

my neighbor’s letter of recommendation. Can I go to visit someone

who misses their dogs? ”

This seems like a very simple idea, but in its most humble way it

was her final gift to her little town she lived in. She doesn’t have

Cassie and Nicki is her companion and her solace in her senior

living apartment. You can come up with a simple way of giving

or paying it forward. I will work on mine this coming year, much

better and more often than before.It would make me so happy if

you would want to share your idea, maybe it will become a way

to inspire others to try something out of their comfort zone…

This reminds me of  a wonderful movie that my mother and I watched

this Christmas holiday. The script was written by a fellow graduate of

my high school in Bay Village, Ohio. His name is Michael Heaton,

he writes a column for the Cleveland Plain Dealer, “Minister of

Culture.” It was first shown on December 2, 2012.

This heartwarming story, titled “The Christmas Heart,” was about

a life that is redeemed by giving. This is the ultimate gift to share.

It is a meaningful reminder of how we all need to be organ donors,

live the best life we can, and care for our neighbors. The writer, Michael

Heaton, had an interesting side note in an article telling about how the

movie was made. The airplane carrying the heart was going to have to

go through a big snow storm. This is an “inside story” and they took

the chance it would snow out where they filmed. No, they had to use

potato flakes! The characters in the Hallmark movie, include famous

actresses Teri Polo and Tess Harper. A teenager’s life is in danger if he

doesn’t receive a heart. Meanwhile a man whose life has gone astray and

made some mistakes, dies. His mother has to decide to give his heart to the

young man who needs it. It has a very exciting paced ending so if you get a

chance to, please watch this! The movie was produced with Michael’s

sister, Patricia Heaton’s help. A family movie with Bay Village roots.

May this coming year be the one you reach farther and touch more.

Happy 2013!!