THANKSGIVING DAY – What better time to count your blessings than on Thanksgiving Day! Perhaps you recall hearing the song that says, “Over the river and through the woods to Grandmother’s house we go.” This Thanksgiving Day poem, originally published in 1844, captures the nostalgia that the author felt as she celebrated the memories of visiting her Grandparent’s house on Thanksgiving Day. In fact, this little poem may even have contributed to your own Thanksgiving Day nostalgia. There’s just something special about traditions. They don’t have to be huge events, or expensive. They can be as simple as watching your favorite football game or reciting a blessing while holding hands around the table. To that end, I’ve created a Thanksgiving Day Blessing gift that you can send as a card or bring (framed) as a unique hostess gift! This lighthearted, but heartwarming poem reminds us not to focus on the things we want, but rather to thank God for giving us what we need. In the end, it’s not how fancy or how large your gathering is on Thanksgiving Day, but rather with whom you spend it.
SERVING OTHERS – Finally, let’s not forget those who have so much less than ourselves, and who may be one meal away from losing hope. Perhaps you’ve never thought about doing this, but why not forgo the turkey and stuffing around your own table and go help out at a nearby soup kitchen or homeless shelter this Thanksgiving. The thing is, you can always celebrate your own Thanksgiving Day turkey dinner the next (or any other) day of the year. And here's a little secret I discovered... sometimes when you let go of the things you think are important, you make room in your heart to receive more blessings than you could ever hope for!
RETIREMENT – Welcome to the next phase of your life! Retirement is not the end, it’s just the beginning. Changing directions, mid-life, doesn’t have to be a burden when you count your blessings. Some people naturally see blessings at every turn, while others – not so much. Sometimes, all it takes is a little extra effort to look beyond what is comfortable, even if that means letting go of the status quo to help you see the glass half-full. When you do, you’ll be able to look forward to any situation as a positive experience. If you need a little reminder, or are looking for something that expresses this sentiment for a retiring co-worker or loved-one, the Purple Wishing Gate has the perfect retirement blessing for sale. It encourages the retiree to look to the future and know that God is proud of their journey and will bless them in the years to come as they live out the dreams they’ve earned.
TRAVEL AFTER RETIREMENT – I recently moved to a 55 plus community, where I was astonished to learn how many people treat travel like a second vocation. While sharing how hot it was during my recent trip to “the beach,” a friend of mine recounted her recent trek across THE SAHARA – ON A CAMEL! YIKES... While I initially felt that my life was somewhat pathetic compared to hers, I remembered that I had family to share “the beach” with… but she had none. The point is that it’s all relative. It took me some time, but I finally saw the glass half-full.
FINANCES AFTER RETIREMENT – You may be losing the paycheck you’ve come to rely on, but you may also be surprised to learn how God provides in the most creative ways, so you may as well trust that He has a plan for your life. I saw it for myself... about a year ago, my friend found out that she qualified for disability, due to a significant heart condition. She began receiving Social Security/disability checks and qualified for Medicare, despite not being of age to otherwise receive that benefit. What first felt like a real personal defeat for her, soon felt like a blessing, when she compared the fact that she had been spending over $3,000 a month for health insurance, and now it was reduced to mere hundreds! This is just another example of how God uses His mighty power in practical ways to move those mountains in your life. Like one of my sister blessing gifts says, "So today I'll stand as a Woman of Strength, atop my lookout tower. I'm ready to conquer whatever comes, as I use YOUR mighty power!"
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