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Showing posts from December, 2014

December 2014: The Gift of Presence vs. Presents

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The marketeers bombard us with their best efforts at this time of the year. You are led to believe your Holiday won't be complete without a 70 inch television, a diamond, or a child's sized motorized car. If you don't deliver you have failed as a parent, partner, or lover.

This holiday season encourages us to teach our family about being present for each other. Start by instructing everyone to turnoff their cell phones, ear pieces, ipads, and computers. Collect their electronics in a beautifuldecorated basket and place them under the tree. Announce to your loved ones, the plan for the next few hours is to be present for each other. We are going to talk to one another. Proceed with your planned festivities minus the electronics. The tolerance of this activity helps you gauge whether your family and friends are ready to further learn about the gift of presence.

A present is a material object subject to loss. A gift of presence is a moment in time when someone feels you are…

December 2014: Cookies, Community, and Celebration

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On the first Saturday in December, an eclectic group of women meet to exchange holiday cookies. Now the uniqueness of this event is we don't really socialize as a group during the year. The organizer and hostess of this Annual Cookie Exchange is Helen. She has opened her home and maintained this tradition for more than thirty years.

Our annual invitations originally came by mail. We confirmed attendance by our land-line phones. Technology changed. We then received an email and RSVP back electronically. An Evite now arrives mid-November to remind us of our yearly gathering.  A map is attached to the invite to download on our phone.  The phone's GPS can talk to us to her home.We have expanded our communication horizons, but the baking habits haven't changed.  The essence of cookie creation is traditional and substantial. The ingredients measured and true.

You are probably wonder why do we come every year? Why do we bake twelve dozen cookies and include a recipe? Why do we …