I have Christmas all over my house, even in the bathroom. No room left undecorated.
The woodland forest in the bathroom with it’s pine cone hedgehogs cuties.
While Christmas giving has gone way overboard in some cases and in my belief the true meaning for Christmas revolves around Christ’s love for us, there is the fun side and history surrounding the fat guy in the red suit. So today’s fun story is about good ole Santa.
According to history, in 280 AD they was a young man born to a well off family. They lived in Patara, Asia Minor now known as Turkey. His name was Nicholas. While he was still a young man, his parents died and left him quite rich. But Nicholas was a gentle soul and was aware of those less fortunate than he. So he would secretly give gifts to those in need. Now in research I was uncertain if he was a monk or later became a monk but regardless he was christened as St. Nicholas and was favored by children and sailors. Not sure how all that happened but he was prayed to for safe journeys on the seas with many legends and stories of his help and appearances.
During the 16th century in Northern Europe the stories, legends and traditions became unpopular but they still wanted a deliverer by which presents came at Christmas. So the UK came up with Father Christmas or Old man Christmas and France had Pere Noel. Other countries like Austria and Germany had Christkind which was a baby with golden hair and wings that represented the baby Jesus. Early settlers in the US used the Christkind idea but revised the name to Kris Kringle. Later Dutch settlers in the US combined the old stories of St. Nick with Kris Kringle and he became Sinter Klaas which later became what we now use as Santa Claus.
In the 19th century the poem The Night Before Christmas was written making him an elf with 8 tiny reindeer. Coca Cola has always had wonderful pictures of full size Santa on their cans.
This is a very special time of year where good laughter, great love and cheer is spread to all. So in the Ho Ho Ho laughter of Santa I wish you the very happiest Christmas. And in the love of Christ of this wondrous season I wish you peace and good will. I have an ornament on my tree that shows even Santa shows a love and gentleness to baby Jesus.
May you share the gentleness and love of both of these Christmas joys and share them with others through the gift of kindness, the best gift of all.
I can see it…light at the end of the tunnel. I am optimistic I can make it. It has been a 5 month uphill battle of necessity but it is almost done. One last week of the knee cart, then one more week of walking in boot then on to real shoes. Yahoo!!
Left foot about 90% healed, Right foot soon to free of heavy boot. QC’s prompt on optimism is exactly where I am. I can see the end and optimistic that with therapy I will be back to normal…as normal as I can be at this point of my life. I am looking forward to spring where walks through the parks and forest can be done again.
I loved QC’s opening quote by Roy Bennett – “Attitude is a choice. Happiness is a choice. Optimism is a choice. Kindness is a choice. Giving is a choice. Respect is a choice. Whatever choice you make makes you. Choose wisely.” ― Roy T. Bennett.
Life is a choice and life is what you make it. QC also stated the difference between optimism and pessimism and fully hit the nail on the head – Optimism is contagious while pessimism is infectious.
Think of how optimism can drive a car through rough times but pessimism will just deflate the tires.
The holidays is a hard emotional time for many. Recent tragedies can amplify those painful times. Reach out to those and give reason for optimism, give them hope to continue. Spread encouragement and kindness where you can as it breeds hope and optimism.
We have now crossed over to December so it is a perfect time to add more pictures of my over zealous indoor Christmas. I do hope it is not a total bore to you. Since I knew my surgery would prohibit me from decorating in December, I got to get ready by the second week of November. So I have been enjoying my 3 trees already along with my village and other Christmas cheer. I will display some that you may have seen and some new.
The first pic is my tree on the dining room table with my 40+ piece village beneath the tree. The second pic is the tree in my bedroom bump out window. Santa and Chris Moose had different opinions on how to hang lights on the tree. The last one is the tree in the living room. So you see I have lots of enjoyment surrounding me. Next week I may be walking(sort of) and I will get that small trees up in the kitchen and bathrooms – no room left unattended. But with all this decoration, is there a favorite? I dunno – maybe each tree has one, but not really. I do know some are favorites as they bring special memories to mind. For instance, my bedroom tree is the fun tree which holds my silly ornaments and ornaments my children made when they were young. Of those my favorite is the clothes pen angel my oldest made when he was 3. (He turned 40 this year) And of course this tree has all the S’more ornaments, over 30 of those. You can see the angel S’more behind Jimmy’s angel.
The other 2 trees are harder to find a favorite as they are all wonderful. Each year I try to find 1 or 2 special ornaments that are different or extra special. So I will give you a few samples from each of the other trees. The tree on the dining room table is all white, glass or silver.
The tree that is in the living room is the so-called formal tree but my idea of formal probably differs from other ideas of formality as I am a pretty laid back type person. Since I was an art major in college, some of that bleeds through on this tree.
As the month goes onward, I will also share my nativity scenes. Yes, there are more than one, not including all the nativity type ornaments hanging on the tree that represent the true reason for the season.
In the gentle mindset of the holiday season remember the value of being kind. Even Charlie Brown understands the gift of kindness.
If you have a favorite ornament or like sharing the Christmas decor from your house, do share. I so enjoy looking to see how others decorate. Have a marvelous week.
What a wonderful month this has been as I have shared on a few of the many many things I am thankful for during the month. It is important that we tie in thankfulness and gratitude for our many blessings like waking up today, being able to read this post, having friends we share with over the internet that are across the world. It is all so fascinating how very close we can be with a simple reach out. This month brought the (hopefully) final surgery on my feet. I have great hopes for being able to go walking in the spring and share the many beautiful things I see. But for now, we are healing and enjoying some down time with my fur baby who currently can not get close enough on the sofa while I try to type this message.
So lets finish up that challenge list but always remember daily the many blessing we are given from family, friends, life and God.
Nov 26 – I am so very thankful for my daughter who has been taking care of me why I recover. With all the snow we got over the weekend, she shoveled the driveway(with snow plow) but still…and she cleared off the sidewalks in the front.
Nov 27 – I am thankful for the ability and understanding of the importance of helping others.
Nov 28 – I am thankful that I can laugh and joke about myself as I age. Laughter is a strong medicine.
Nov 29 – I am thankful for the people in my life that made me realize the most important decision I would ever make in my life – Accepting Jesus as my Savior. I could not have survived some of the things I have been through in my life with out His help.
Nov 30 – I am thankful for someone suggesting this challenge to remind us all of the many things we need to be aware of that are gifts to be thankful for.
As I close off the challenge of my thankful November I remind everyone to be kind. I ran across this quote which I though was very appropriate from Mark Twain. He said –
“Kindness is the language which the deaf can hear and the blind can see.”
So I close in reminder saying of it’s the tiny things we do in life that can bring the greatest thankfulness and the brightest joy.
I did not get this posted yesterday so I am a day late for week 4. The month of November is where we focus on things we are thankful for so I am posting this weekly during the month to share all that I am thankful for. Some overlap a bit but thankfulness has a way of doing that because life overlaps in many ways as it should. If you didn’t see the others and would like to, they are listed here; week 1, week 2, week 3.
Nov 19 – I am thankful the Lord has given me yet another day. Hopefully I use each day as the gift it is.
Nov 20 – I am thankful that although the pain in my foot is minor as I recover from surgery, at least I still have a foot that is healing nicely. Now both are done.
Nov 21 – I am so thankful for God’s light that shines on all of us and for the many artist that use their talents to remind us and lift us when we need that lift.
Nov 22 – I am thankful for what this day remind us of and for the love of family and friends that surrounds at this time. Also for the many memories of this day, the “Wow” moments and the “Oh, Really” moments.
Nov 23 – I am so very thankful that I do not have the shopping bug so that I do not have to get out in the madness of Black Friday.
Nov 24 – I am thankful for the fun I have with college football and super excited that my team won and is headed to the conference championship, Go Dawgs!
Nov 25 – I am thankful for all the blessing I have received and the ability to enjoy sitting on the couch watching the birds eat as much as they can before the snow gets too thick on the feeders. Then of course it did.
Nov 26 – I am so thankful that I have a daughter that is taking care of me as I heal and that she took care of all the snow removal since I am still on the knee walker from surgery. Don’t think it would do well in 13″ of snow.
And remember as always, especially when times, weather and situations get trying, be kind. It can be the greatest gift you could give.
The wonders of medicine in today’s world is amazing. We now have out-patient surgery that get us home to heal which is such a better place if possible. But during that healing, certain precautions need to be made to make sure we don’t do harm to our self or undo the procedure we have gone through. There enters the dreaded pain meds. Not only do they make us groggy, they keep us somewhat immobile with extra sleeping, that gets old.
I also understand the importance of these meds due to my stubborn nature – “Oh, I am ok, I can do that…not”? Uh huh. Stubborn. That’s me. My daughter told me I invented the word.
So we are in healing mode between the bed, the couch and the bathroom and of course the kitchen. I don’t think I have ever been too hurt to eat – probably why I have a high BMI. But its all good, one foot is ready and doing well and the other is starting the healing process.
You would think I would be feeling the same since it was basically the same surgery but no its been different. But healing all the same. Go back to Dr. tomorrow for x-rays to make sure bones are knitting correctly but as well as I did last time, we should all be good.
As I close in a note of a more serious nature, I again remind everyone of the beauty of kindness. Kindness is a reflection of God’s love that even in its smallest gesture brings a profound result of goodness and joy.
Last week I posted a challenge that was actually started on facebook to remind us the wonderful things we can be thankful for. In the US, November is a dual thankful month for us as we celebrate Veteran Day at the first of the month and Thanksgiving at the end of the month. So I am doing a daily thankful challenge but posting it only once per week each Sunday. If you want to check last weeks post out, it is located here. And if you would like to join in on the fun, I would love your thoughts.
Since pictures are so powerful in connecting our brain with our heart, I thought I would add pictures with my daily challenge.
Nov 5 – I am thankful that now with the weather turning wet and cold, I have a warm and dry house to live in.
Nov 6 – I am thankful that all the the medical testing I have been getting are showing good results.
Nov 7 – While the medical test were good, my BMI was high. BMI for those who may not know what it is, it means I am overweight. That means I have plenty of food on my table and for that I am truly thankful as there are some who do not.
Nov 8 – I am thankful for the laughter I have in my life as laughter can remove a lot of hurt in this world.
Nov 9 – I am thankful for the basic good health I have. Being in my mid-60s, I am on no daily medication other than a multi-vitamin. God has been good to me.
Nov 10 – I am thankful for all the military men and women who have served and sacrificed themselves for my freedom.
Nov 11 – I am thankful for friends and neighbors who do little things that mean so very much when you need the help.
And as we share in the thankfulness of this month always remember to be kind. Kindness is a gift from God that should be spread thick like jam on toast.