Saturday, December 13, 2008

The holidays can trigger feelings of
melancholy, stress and depression.
Try not to get caught up in the hype,
materialism, commercialism or illusions
that holidays bring. Keep it simple
and remember the reason for the season.

Watch out for the battle of the bulge
eating too much),
the battle of the budget (spending too much),
the battle of the booze (drinking),
and the battle of the blues (depression)!

Holiday Tips
Make creative gifts like: candles,
baked goods, greeting cards, record
a loved one’s favorite musical
selections on an audio tape or CD,
create a collage of photographs, a
poem on fancy paper, a special greeting
or memory recorded on a video tape,
give gift certificates for a massage,
pedicure, pampering services or books.

Don’t allow excuses (i.e., family grudges,
my house needs painting, I need new
furniture, I don’t have enough chairs)
to keep you from enjoying family and
friends. Don’t procrastinate.
Enjoy family and friends now. Being
around laughter and good food is
healing. If your money is a low, don’t
be embarrassed to ask everyone to
bring a dish (sweet potato pie,
peach cobbler, greens, macaroni and
cheese or the beverages). Even if
everyone has to bring a chair because
you have only one couch, so what!
Ask them to bring a chair and a
card table.

Parents, don’t allow your children
to make you feel guilty and pressure
you into spending and shopping until
you drop. Stay within your budget
and don’t allow your children’s
begging, harassment or tantrums stress
you out. You may feel inadequate
because you’re unemployed, single,
going through a divorce or because
you see everyone around you buying
the latest and greatest gifts. You’ll
find yourself in financial bondage
if you allow your child to buy you
a first class ticket for a guilt trip.

Take some time with your family and
friends and share your blessings,
achievements and testimonies from
this past year. Share your goals and
plans for the new year. Each one write
down at least three goals you have
for the new year. Place them in separate
sealed envelopes and pray together
over them asking for God’s guidance,
grace and blessings. Next year all of
you plan to meet again at the end of
the year to review and celebrate
your achievements.

The holidays have become less
consecrated and more commercial.
Let us put the words “holy” back into
“holidays” and “Christ” back into
“Christmas.” As we heal on a national
and personal level from the sorrow
and changes in our lives, I know you
join me in strengthening your faith,
courage and relationships with the Lord,
family, friends and community.
Let us give the best gifts all year
like acts of kindness, service,
compassion, charity and encouragement.

' by Jewel Diamond Taylor '

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