Thursday, December 29, 2011


Christmas Mayhem Thursday!

I'll be honest: After this week, I really don't have the heart to host some weighty political debate this week. Instead, I think we should tell stories about our Christmases. This isn't my idea; rather, I am accepting the challenge New Christine made so gracefully in a comment a few weeks ago, when she said this:

This fall, while immersed in two large commercial projects, I received an unexpected call from a family of five requesting design help with their kitchen and dining room make-over. With no time and little desire, I struggled to reply and contemplated turning down my first referral – a project so small, the compensation barely worth the effort. My better Angels won out...

My acceptance was greeted with a “Thank you,” and a comment, “After viewing your web site, why would you even consider taking on a project like ours?”

A whisper hard while driving to meet them, suggested my efforts should be offered with a request to pay it forward. For the referral that came from his bother, their family agreed to take his brother’s to a special outing or performance, with the remainder of my design hours to be given back charitably to their parish or community.

Weeks later, during an Advent enjoyed and preparations mostly complete, I chose a first Christmas without a fir freshly cut. The savings gifted to a family member, down sized and seeking employment for more than six months - Something extra at Christmas, for her and her family. A “Charlie Brown” tree for me. Content was I, though my loved ones and friends were surprised - and a story was shared.

From my new clients a surprise did I soon receive. “Speaking of Christmas, we have 2 adults and three kids who LOVE to decorate for Christmas. If you would let us, we would love to bring a tree by your house and decorate it.”

A balsam fir proudly stands watch over my little sparse tree, a gift unexpected from loved ones for me…

What Gift can we Bring when we

So sometimes something you do for someone gets paid back many years later.

About 10 years ago we included one of my parents neighbors in our Christmas dinner as she was recently widowed and we felt it was a nice thing to do.

All these years later my mother was in the same situation. Preparing to spend her first Christmas alone. Neither my brother or I were able to travel to Florida for the holiday and she insisted on not wishing to spend Christmas in MI (too darn cold). We were hopeful that a neighbor would include her in holdiay drinks or a meal and so it was to be. The woman we kindly invited to join us so many years ago asked my Mom to join her for Christmas dinner this year. Sometimes it takes a while for the right time to repay a kind gesture.

Happy New Year everyone.
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