And just like that, the holidays are here!
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Natty Guy and I just returned earlier this week from a few weeks in Egypt. I’m considering a future post or two on the trip but, for now, suffice it to say that it was a great experience. The people are unbelievably friendly! The sights are incredible. 5,000 years of history? Come on. And the sea life/coral of the Red Sea is amazing with water so clear it’s like swimming in a bottle of Dasani.
GO! They need tourism. Much like neighboring Jordan, Egypt is not flush with oil money. An incredibly large portion of the population work in tourism and they have been suffering since the Arab Spring. It’s safe. It’s a bargain right now. And relatively uncrowded. It’s a great way to spread some kindness to our friends across the globe all while YOU get to enjoy some spectacular sights, experiences and sunshine!
Who is heading out today for some Black Friday deals? Not me. I’m looking forward to nesting and maybe catching Bohemian Rhapsody at the theater. Maybe I’ll try to catch some deals on Cyber Monday instead.
The holidays feel a bit hollow this year. It’s our first Thanksgiving and Christmas without our wonderful Pucci-poo! An adjustment for sure. Hope he’s with us in spirit and knows that we’re enjoying great memories. How terrified he was of the Christmas tree going up. The way he would sniff his stocking throughout the day, always hoping to find a treat nestled inside. How he’d turn on the cute for Christmas card photo op time. Knowing exactly which presents under the tree were “his”. How exhausted he’d be after our 3 days of celebrations with various families. Such good memories of the joy he brought to our lives!
Holiday Acts of Kindness: Giving to Those in Need
I feel a bit foolish for posting this now because the reality is, charitable organizations need support ALL YEAR ROUND, not just at the holidays when it’s more popular to volunteer. But, for a number of years, my mom has been heavily involved with the Christmas distribution for the Salvation Army of Summit County Ohio so I thought I’d give the group a little shout-out.
They are always looking for people to adopt a child and purchase their gifts, for people to help package the gifts, general fund donations, etc. It’s gotten to be a family affair for us now. I pack every year as does my mother-in-law, sister-in-law, nephew and several friends. Always a fun time and rewarding to realize you are helping bring Christmas to kids that would other wise have none.
The Salvation Army is by no means the only game in town, although they are often cited for how well they manage donations and how low they keep administrative fees. If you want to add a little volunteering to your holiday activities, pick something that interests you – a food bank, an animal shelter, a charity for disabled children. The options are nearly limitless and whatever you choose to help is sure to be appreciated!
Holiday Acts of Kindness: Shop Small, Shop Local
I’ve had the great opportunity to work with some amazing new retail brands this year. With Small Business Saturday coming up tomorrow, it’s a great time to give them another shout-out! Once you’re done scoring your big-box deals today, be sure to show these smaller vendors some love.
- Annie’s Signature Sweets – sweet treats and baking classes
- Cleveland Candle Company – custom blended candles and bath products & creative classes
- Emily Roggenburk – apparel and photography
- Melissa Bilsky; J. Hilburn Men’s Clothier – men’s custom apparel
- Modern Map Art – custom map related products to mark a special date
Shameless Self Promotion
If you plan on shopping online over the next few days, please click on one of these links to shop! If you make a purchase, I receive a small commission at no extra cost to you and it helps support my little blog. Thanks so much for your consideration and support! 😘
Saks Fifth Avenue: https://fave.co/2DDpLS7
Dick’s Sporting Goods: https://fave.co/2k1sD2k
LL Bean: https://fave.co/2QbdzPs
Best Buy: https://fave.co/2Anxr87
Banana Republic: https://fave.co/2Ai2vGi
Ann Taylor: https://fave.co/2DDz4BF
White House Black Market: https://fave.co/2Anxr87
Lilly Pulitzer: https://fave.co/2QbdzPs
Until next time…keep cultivating a simple, stylish and satisfying life!