Season of Giving

Monday, December 5, 2011

There is so much going on during this season. I feel like my to-do list gets longer and longer each day. I was running around with my mom this weekend, taking care of some holiday things and finding so many things that I "need." Today, I am fortunate that I work for a non-profit that brought me back to real life. I was reminded today of the many, many kids right here in my neighborhood that won't have a Christmas, that don't get to make a Christmas list, that don't live with a beautiful lighted tree in their home, that don't get to hug a parent or a sibling and wish them a Merry Christmas. I'm thankful my job helps keep me grounded and constantly reminds me the real meaning of this joyous season. It is so easy to forget about the many people in need when you are receiving emails every minute with new, grand Christmas gift ideas, when you are surrounded by beautiful stores with lights and fun red and green items calling your name in the windows. It's tough...I know. I know many of you already do so much for others, but today I challenge you to pick your favorite charity in your community and give back by offering your time and/or money during the Holiday Season. It's amazing how it makes you feel. It's the best high and best addiction anyone can get. 
There are MANY opportunities to give back. Last Friday, B and I ran Lights of Love. It's a festive, holiday 5K that benefits Ronald McDonald House Charities of Austin and Central Texas. It was so much fun! It was chilly, people were in great moods...running with their dogs and children, Santa was there, lights were everywhere and they even had Jingle Beer on the run! 
I work for an organization that helps kids in the system find permanent, loving homes. So many of these kids won't have Christmas this year. B and I bought presents for a 4 year old girl. She didn't ask for much and it was so much fun to shop for her. Many organizations have kids/families you can buy Christmas gifts for, so they can share in the joy of the season that we all know and love. 

I saw a fun way to give back today in my community. HAAM (Health Alliance for Austin Musicians) is a local organization, here in Austin, that provides access to affordable health care for Austin's low income, unisured musicians, focusing on prevention and wellness. Some Austin musicians got together and made a Holiday HAAM Jam CD. Fun, right?! You can buy the CD or download it for just $10 and have all the holiday tunes you need for the season!
Enjoy the holiday season and soak in all the joy the many twinkling lights bring us during this time of year. Just try to take time to remember the many people in need and the many ways to give back. Many giving opportunities cost nothing, but time:)! Spread your joy to those who might not have any this Christmas.

Christmas cheer to all during this lovely giving season!

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