This holiday season is proving to be a tough one. Last week, my husband's company laid off 75 percent of the people who work there. Many of his friends--most of whom have mortgages and families--are now out of work only two weeks before Christmas. We are cutting short a planned visit to family in Pennsylvania because he is worried about job security.
Christmas shopping has been a challenge since I managed to save only half of what I had in previous years in my bank's Christmas Club account. We have very few neighbors this year and a lot of empty houses around us.
With all of the uncertainty, I have been feeling a little down this holiday season. But today, I have decided I will look for the positives. So, here is a list of all of the things I am grateful for this Christmas:
1. Watching the Christmas light twinkle while the snow falls around them
2. Baking cookies for family and friends
3. Online shopping
4. A lit Christmas tree in a dark room.
5. Getting tears in my eyes as I watch my kids perform in their holiday recitals.
6. My small house that I can comfortably afford.
7. Remembering my Great Aunt Helen as I make nutrolls
8. Having a job when so many have lost theirs
9. Mistletoe, and the right person under it
10. Watching holiday movies after everyone else has gone to bed
11. Thinking of my grandmother as I set out her silver
12. Cats who know instinctively when you need them on your lap
13. A church aglow in candles and Christmas lights
14. Radio stations that play only holiday music
15. My family gathered around our advent wreath
16. Getting Christmas cards and letters from faraway friends
17. Cold, clear nights when you can see tons of stars
18. Reading aloud the gospel passage of the birth of Jesus on Christmas Eve
19. Stockings for each family member hung in front of the fireplace
20. A prayer answered
The economy seems like a giant Grinch sneaking down off the mountain and robbing all of us hapless Whos of our holiday happiness. Don't let it. Take time this holiday season to remember all the things in your life for which you are grateful.
And I dare you to say "hapless Whos of our holiday happiness" three times, fast.
Merry Christmas, everyone!