Tuesday, December 1, 2015

Hitting the RACK

Wow, where has this year gone?

Time to flip the calendar page to the last one of the year. For many – and especially for children – the traditional advent calendar becomes a focal point of the day. Let the countdown begin!

Putting my personal spiritual beliefs aside, I'm getting on the countdown bandwagon this year for the simple reason that I'm far too focused on myself, my pain, and my lack of mobility. It's all about me-me-me here in the Middle of Nowhere, and that's not what the Christmas spirit is all about.

A friend posted a Random Acts of Christmas Kindness Advent Calendar yesterday on Facebook. I saved the link, had a look, and while I may not be able to do something kind every day, I'm going to give it the old geriatric try.

There are three calendar options. One is for the entire month, in case you want to go crazy with kindness. One is blank, so you can fill in each day's kindness as you accomplish it. The third has 24 suggestions, one for each day leading up to Christmas.

The blog is kid-centric, but the ideas are adaptable if you don't have children at home. If you do, though, I think it would be a great way to help youngsters learn that doing for others warms two hearts.

I also printed out a coloring advent calendar. I e-mailed it to each of my young grandchildren, and then decided I'd do one, too. I haven't jumped on the adult coloring bandwagon, but I definitely see the value in it. It's in the same category as knitting garter stitch (which is what my current project is) – repetitive, soothing, mindless, and creative.

Perfect for getting out of one's own head.

Today's Random Act of Christmas Kindness is "Give a compliment to a friend."

My friend and sister from another mother, Gingerzingi, along with her husband, hosted his mother last week. If you're a regular reader of her blog, you'll know Mother-in-Law Week can be fraught with anxiety and resentment. Her account of their activities and interactions this year were very different. Gingerzingi has been doing a lot of personal "work," and it really showed, in a less stressful, more pleasant visit. So … whatever you're doing, G, it's working! And your example – of empathy, understanding, and kindness – is one I'm following. Thank you.

1 comment:

gingerzingi said...

Thanks for the shout-out, chick!

You know I've been doing a number of things to improve my experience of life - setting an intention for the day, listening to various inspirational podcasts, trying to say "yes" more often. It's a combination of a lot of things. But if I had to name one thing, it would be this quote I saw on FB (so embarrassing that I'm getting life advice from social media!!!) - the one about "it takes the same amount of work to make ourselves miserable as to make ourselves happy." That was really eye-opening to me, not least because it hadn't occurred to me that one might have to TRY to be happy. I thought happiness was the absence of bad things, and if you got rid of everything bad in your life you'd be happy. Doesn't work that way. There will always be bad things, and you have to put your efforts into making good things. Positive actions, not just avoidance of the negative.

I haven't done it recently, but I've enjoyed coloring books as an adult. Although I just modified and defiled regular kids' coloring books. You're right, it's the same category as knitting garter stitch. I guess it's flow.