Monday, December 2, 2013

It's Official, "Merry Christmas!"

Salvation Army Community Dinner
Yes, the holiday season is upon us and all the usual suspects are out in full force. The radio is playing Christmas songs, the DIYers have started posting pictures of their clever handmade gifts, and Dave has decorated the outside of our house while I spent the weekend baking cookies.

We had a lovely Thanksgiving at home, just the 3 of us. Mason and I went and worked at the Salvation Army Community Thanksgiving dinner and that was something else! There is nothing like the feelings you feel when you volunteer, seriously, the best feeling ever. Mason made the green bean casserole and did all the slicing and dicing for stuffing on Wednesday including making his own seasoned bread crumbs! Dave made a turkey, put all the stuffing together, made his 24 hour fruit salad, and cranberry relish, while I made the mashed potatoes and gravy. It was the most low key Thanksgiving holiday we've ever had, in large part because we all chipped it. I think it might have even tasted better knowing we all worked together to make it such a lovely day. After dinner and cleaning up, again, a group effort, Mason and Dave headed outside to start decorating while I took all my Thanksgiving d├ęcor down and put up the Christmas goodies.

Dave did some black Friday shopping as we always count on the Home Depot deal for live cedar garlands, 15 ft for $5, and .99 poinsettias. I also like Walgreens for laundry soap, buy 1 get 2 free. I typically only buy laundry soap once a year! Other than just a few more things, I think we are done shopping. Now it's time to decorate cookies, wrap presents, address Christmas cards and enjoy the holiday season.

Our Thanksgiving Table
On another note, Mason and his classmates (parents included!) have raised nearly $2,500 for the school kitchen project with Mason's efforts combined with marmalade sales and the numbers are not in for the money we earned working the gates at the Mandarin Festival - I have high hopes it will take us near or over $10,000! Mason has begun Phase II of the project and is writing to manufacturers of commercial kitchen equipment. We are struggling a little because he doesn't like that I am insisting he hand write the letters, he wants to type them. I know at only 10 years old, he doesn't understand the reaction the person opening the letter is likely to have when they see an original, hand written letter from him versus just another type written letter. I also want him to understand how his energy and enthusiasm for the project passes through from him, to the pen, to the paper, and even if just in a little way, the person who reads his communication. I'll keep you posted, I'm feeling very confident we are going to have a new kitchen at Alta Vista Community Charter School next year!

With that, have a lovely week and instead of thinking about what you want for Christmas, think about what you can give - it feels better and in the end, it is really the best gift to you!

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