gingerbread men

We all wish for the holiday season to be a time we can relax and celebrate with our family and friends.  For many of us it often, unfortunately, becomes a period of stress and concern.  So we turned to our seniors for some words of wisdom on how to make it a little more enjoyable.  They had the following to offer.

First, take moments out of your days to realize just how fortunate you are to be here in Mill Valley where you are pretty safe and secure.  There is a lot of turmoil in the world today.  For those of us able to be living here, our problems and concerns usually seem minor as compared with people most anywhere else.

Next, try to make the holidays a little easier in regards to gift giving.  Most of us have a lot, and want for little.  So consider getting experiences for those special people in your life.  Businesses in our area are still hurting, so a meal at a new or favorite restaurant, tickets to a show or joining them for a night out, a whale watching tour or a favorite hike, sharing time with them might be the best thing you can offer.

Do not forget your local charities.  Providing a donation in someone else’s name is a great way to honor a loved one and help organization you both care about.  In fact, studies show that people often feel better about themselves when they give to a cause they support, especially if it is one they know something about and/or can see the benefits of directly.  There are innumerable great non-profits doing really good work, many here in Marin, and most now have a very easy way to give.

They suggested giving yourself a break too.  When you are having people over for a meal, visit or stay, everything doesn’t have to be perfect.  In fact, they remind us that some of the most memorable moments occur when something goes wrong – and that almost always happens anyway.

Also, they note that the amount of sunlight is getting less and less with each passing day.  So try to go outside for at least 15 minutes each day to take advantage its many proven benefits.   Second, make the night a little brighter by putting up some holiday lights.  There are very few restrictions on lighting and it’s hard to go overboard, so have some fun with it.

Here is hoping some aspects of the offered wisdom hit home and that you have a truly wonderful holiday season.  Take care until next year!

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