Just a Thought…
Somehow, not only for Christmas
But all the long year through,
The joy that you give to others
Is the joy that comes back to you.
[John Greenleaf Whittier]
Here we are, less than two weeks from Christmas, and I’m hoping – as are those who’ve sent gifts through the mail – that the massive backlog of parcels and packages in the main sorting stations in Toronto and Vancouver doesn’t mean holiday gift-giving is ruined for far-flung families such as our own.
Of course, it used to be that a lot of mail at this time of year consisted of colourful envelopes holding cards, family letters and even a cheque or gift card. I say “used to” as so many people have given up on sending Christmas cards, citing cost, a lack of time and so on.
I used to love sending cards. I’d be up to my elbows in glitter by the time my afternoon of writing, addressing, licking and stamping was done. This year, a few people to whom I’ve delivered presents in person got cards; otherwise, I’m afraid the busy period leading up to our departure from BC in late October just didn’t allow for it.
I don’t know how many people still send cards. Occasionally, I’ll get a lovely one via email from a journal reader or two, but the rest seem to come mostly from companies who’ve gotten our business over the last few years. I don’t usually hang on to cards but I do have the last one my mom sent us and this one from Lauren’s final Christmas with us. I just love it.
Today, I want to share with you something you may want to copy and paste to send to others on that list of people who are close to your heart. Our friend and former co-worker Jay Kennedy sends it out annually and I remember reading it on the air during one of our Christmas Eve at Erin’s shows that ran from 1991 to 2014 (with a few years off in the middle).
My gosh, that show meant so much to me that when I knew I was being replaced at CHFI in 2003, one of the first things that went through my mind was, What about the Christmas Eve show? I so loved being a part of some families’ traditions. I’ll never forget the year when the ratings showed that one of every two radios turned on that night in the GTA was tuned to CHFI. Goodness. What an honour – and such a joy!
So today I’ll leave you with Jay’s lovely poem which was sent to his mom years ago and which Jay has adjusted and tweaked over the years – like a family recipe handed down and improved upon with each use. I hope it resonates with you with as much sweetness as it does for me.I’ll be back with you here tomorrow with a story of the Christmas I ruined. For myself. Ta!
I have a list of folks I know, all written in a book
And every year when Christmas comes, I go and take a look.
And that’s when I realize, these names are all a part
Not of the book they’re written in, but simply of my heart.
For each name stands for someone, who has crossed my path some time
And in that meeting they’ve become a rhythm in my rhyme.
And while it sounds fantastic, for me to make this claim
I really feel that I’m composed of each remembered name.
And while you may not be aware of any special link
Just meeting you has changed my life, a lot more than you think.
For once I’ve met somebody and see their friendly face
the memories of that treasured time, the years will not erase.
So never think my Christmas cards are just a mere routine
Of names upon a Christmas list, forgotten in between.
For when I send a Christmas card that is addressed to you
It’s cuz you’re on a list of those I’m indebted to.
For I am but the total of the many I have met
And you are certainly one I prefer not to forget.
And whether I have known you, for many days or few
In some ways you’ve had a part in shaping things I do.
And every year when Christmas comes, I realize anew,
The best gift life can offer, is meeting folks like you.
And may the spirit of Christmas, as long as it endures
Leave its richest blessing in the hearts of you and yours!