Thursday, October 27, 2011

Now. Begins. The. Season. Of. Giving.

It's been a while since I've posted. I've even been writing posts and saving them, but not publishing them! I have no reason for this other than I've been in a very pensive mode lately. I've been spending the last couple of weeks being very inward and just analyzing some life events and thoughts on forward progress. I'm still going to continue to take some time for this kind of thing, but I will try and make a conscious effort to post more. Sometimes I simply go through phases...just like everyone else! :)

I wanted to talk a little today about GIVING! I have been thinking about adding some volunteer work onto my plate for the winter season as I will not be so busy with my business. However, I'm contemplating what type of time commitment and activity I would like to pursue. The thought of giving also came to a head tonight because at my work, Neighbors, Inc., I have been made a co-coordinator of our Christmas programs. We had a Christmas meeting tonight for all of the church representatives in our community to ask them to help us spread the word. See? I even made Christmas goodies for them! 

It feels so wrong to make Christmas goodies in October!!! But they were still delicious! :)

Our Christmas programs include Adopt-A-Family, Adopt-A-Senior and Love Your Neighbor. Businesses, church groups, organizations, families and individuals call Neighbors to adopt a family or senior to purchase Christmas gifts for the needy families and seniors. At Neighbors we see all sorts of families come through the door who are down and out and simply struggling to make ends meet. Our programs focus on purchasing presents for the children only (and if adopters would like to give presents to the adults as well, they may). Lately we have seen such an increase in need due to people being laid off, hours cut, people being out of work so long they are losing their unemployment benefits and illnesses. It can be overwhelming to be faced with this every day. For many families and individuals, Neighbors is the one place that they can depend on in their time of need. Our Adopt-A-Senior program is especially wonderful because many seniors do not have a family or anyone to purchase them a gift during the holiday season and it's great to know that because of Neighbors, they will not be forgotten. All the leftover families who are not adopted are put into the Love Your Neighbor program where they receive clothing, food vouchers for a holiday meal and gifts for their children from the other individual donations we receive at Neighbors. We try our best to match the wishes of the children in Love Your Neighbor. It's unfortunate, but our number of adoptees far outweighs our number of adopters, so we still make sure that no family leaves empty handed. Our volunteers spend hundreds, if not thousands of hours helping with these programs. We are so grateful to them for their help and I know the families are too!

The meeting tonight really got me thinking ahead to how I can help a family in need. I know that I cannot adopt a family myself but I am going to contact my family to see if rather than purchasing gifts for one another, we adopt a family! It's such a GREAT way to celebrate Christmas! After all, I don't need any more STUFF! :)

We were also blessed at our meeting with the generous and wonderful talent from the South Metro Chorale! They had amazing voices and I would love to go and see one of their concerts! I have attached a video of four of the members from the Chorale (there are about 40 members in total) who volunteered their time tonight to get us in the Christmas spirit at our meeting! After all, it's not even Halloween! It's hard to starting thinking of Christmas when snow hasn't even fallen yet! Regardless, they did a wonderful job and definitely got me in the Christmas spirit of giving! If you want to know more about this group and their concerts that they put on throughout the South Metro in Minnesota, check them out HERE or like them on Facebook HERE. They have upcoming Christmas concerts! Here is a small taste of what great quality of singing you will hear! These are just four of the members!

(From left to right: Jenny, Amy, Ryan and Dave)

How are you going to GIVE this Christmas season?

If you haven't already made plans for your Christmas giving and would like to adopt a family or senior at Neighbors, Inc., we would love to have more adopters to help us meet our demand. We have seen such a huge increase in demand for our food shelf alone, that one can only expect the demand for Christmas help will also increase! If you live in the Twin Cities area and would like to contact us about our Adopt-A-Family and Adopt-A-Senior programs, feel free to contact us at (651) 306-2152. Or you can email ME at for any more questions! 

We would love to have more adopters! 

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