Celebrating the holidays differently. What gift can you give yourself?

Posted by MGMolly @Erinmfs, Dec 19, 2020

I’m not old, but then I am, I qualify for AARP! I thought I’d get myself a Christmas gift, I just received an setup an Apple Homepod. I live alone, and now I can talk to Siri for company! I just asked Siri to play the News, and heard from NPR, and now Siri picked out some Christmas music, that I wouldn’t normally hear! Siri played the Temptations! What fun gift are you giving or receiving this year?

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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@harriethodgson1

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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I've been thinking of going back to work, but then, I am on disability and the stress is hard on me. I'm on SSDI. I am glad that you found a job that fits into your lifestyle and schedule. I have been on the go receintly and I'm finding that perhaps I really shouldn't work, so I get lonely not working. I became active in my church instead, and have made some new friends. But we are all loners, I think I'll call one today and see what she's up to with the holidays approaching. Covid has gone around this area, everyone is hibernating from the Covid bug, I think that has increased my stress and lonliness.

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@Erinmfs

I've been thinking of going back to work, but then, I am on disability and the stress is hard on me. I'm on SSDI. I am glad that you found a job that fits into your lifestyle and schedule. I have been on the go receintly and I'm finding that perhaps I really shouldn't work, so I get lonely not working. I became active in my church instead, and have made some new friends. But we are all loners, I think I'll call one today and see what she's up to with the holidays approaching. Covid has gone around this area, everyone is hibernating from the Covid bug, I think that has increased my stress and lonliness.

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Covid increased my stress because I tested positive. Thankfully, I never developed any symptoms. Covid also changed how I honor my husband. No live memorial service at church. No hugs, No big gathering of family. Grief is lonely to begin with and Covid made it lonier.

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I've had my first covid test recently, up the nose, it didn't hurt too badly. My test was negative, or it must have been, nobody notified me that I was positive anyway. What a weird new world that we live in with this Pandemic going on. Take good care of yourself. That's what I'm doing. And talking to one of these HomePod, it won't test positive for covid anyway! I just used it as a speakerphone. I'm wondering if I can Zoom for the holidays now, we zoom for bible studies. Our bible study leader, our pastor, on break for the holidays. I'll miss his Zoom sessions, has kept me from getting too lonely.

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@harriethodgson1

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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opentohope, I like that! we have a Blue Christmas service at my church, for those of us not having a happy happy holiday due to grief or loss. I maybe should go , or participate in your website, thank you!

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@harriethodgson1

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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@harriethodgson1 My sincere condolences on the passing of your husband. I know you were a dedicated caregiver, and have offered hard-won insights with us here on Mayo Connect. Your experiences give you a unique gift of relating to others.

Congratulations on the type of job you hoped for!
Ginger

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@gingerw

@harriethodgson1 My sincere condolences on the passing of your husband. I know you were a dedicated caregiver, and have offered hard-won insights with us here on Mayo Connect. Your experiences give you a unique gift of relating to others.

Congratulations on the type of job you hoped for!
Ginger

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Thank you Ginger. My husband was an amazing, humble man and I was blessed to be married to him for 63 years.

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@harriethodgson1

Thank you Ginger. My husband was an amazing, humble man and I was blessed to be married to him for 63 years.

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@harriethodgson1
Hello Harriet,
Please accept my condolences on the death of your husband. I know from your writings here on Connect and in your blog that you were a caregiver par excellence! Having had 63 years of marriage to "an amazing, humble man" is a wonderful legacy that he leaves behind. I can't imagine how difficult it must be to not have been surrounded by family and friends in the traditional way because of COVID. I will pray that your work will be fulfilling and that you will have peace in your heart and mind this Christmas season.

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Thank you Teresa. I'm dreading Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but will get through them. Sure wish I had family in town, but I don't.

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@harriethodgson1

Thank you Teresa. I'm dreading Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but will get through them. Sure wish I had family in town, but I don't.

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@harriethodgson1 I hope that you will get lots of phone calls on those days so that you will feel closer to your family.

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@Erinmfs Well, Molly, this took some time for me to consider! I have been thinking of gifting our household a new kitten, but we didn't fare too well with a rescue we adopted Feb 2019. Our first cat, a Burmese mix, took an instant dislike to 3 Speed [she had three legs] and declared war. Not a very happy household, and we had to rehome her. So, I watch cute kitten videos now, glaring at our Tessie Belle and tell her "this could be us if you'd allow it!"

We did help out a family who recently lost everything. While getting out in public is a challenge this year, my husband and I had such fun lending a hand. It is very soul-satisfying to be able to do this. Bless their hearts, the two teenagers only wanted some clothes.

A fun thing to think about is how much more social we will be next year, as a nation. There was an "Unofficial Just Some People With Lights on Their Vehicles" parade in town Saturday night, and we will do that next year [gosh, a whole year to think up something crazy!]. I am not in to techy stuff, so your idea of getting a Siri was just right for you. Does she argue her points, and present a challenge? My stepson got me a new wind spinner for the front yard, while I made TV watching lap blankets customized for each of his family. That was fun to rootle through fabric stash and have each one different!

I invite @fiesty76 @imallears @jakedduck1 @sueinmn @rosemarya to clue us in what fun things they may be gifting or receiving?
Ginger

REPLY
@gingerw

@Erinmfs Well, Molly, this took some time for me to consider! I have been thinking of gifting our household a new kitten, but we didn't fare too well with a rescue we adopted Feb 2019. Our first cat, a Burmese mix, took an instant dislike to 3 Speed [she had three legs] and declared war. Not a very happy household, and we had to rehome her. So, I watch cute kitten videos now, glaring at our Tessie Belle and tell her "this could be us if you'd allow it!"

We did help out a family who recently lost everything. While getting out in public is a challenge this year, my husband and I had such fun lending a hand. It is very soul-satisfying to be able to do this. Bless their hearts, the two teenagers only wanted some clothes.

A fun thing to think about is how much more social we will be next year, as a nation. There was an "Unofficial Just Some People With Lights on Their Vehicles" parade in town Saturday night, and we will do that next year [gosh, a whole year to think up something crazy!]. I am not in to techy stuff, so your idea of getting a Siri was just right for you. Does she argue her points, and present a challenge? My stepson got me a new wind spinner for the front yard, while I made TV watching lap blankets customized for each of his family. That was fun to rootle through fabric stash and have each one different!

I invite @fiesty76 @imallears @jakedduck1 @sueinmn @rosemarya to clue us in what fun things they may be gifting or receiving?
Ginger

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Well, you all know I have to complicate everything.
I just finished a tshirt quilt for my husband. It's 60 x 84 so I made most of it standing at my cutting table with the machine on top. And my daughter requested a new apron, so I found special fabric and made her a reversible one.
We don't gift our little guys with a lot of toys but they are really into pretend cooking so I created a set of play dishes pots and pans supplemented with small real spatulas and the like. All is being delivered in two totes with pretend burners on top. Auntie added play food and I made them aprons.
The adult kids are getting requested special cookware.

Gifts will be exchanged in person Dec 24th during a short visit then we'll dine separately. At 10pm we will walk to an outdoor candlelight service at a neighborhood church as we cannot imagine Christmas Eve without, and our church is still only virtual.

Our celebration on the 25th will be a project thought up and tested by Auntie and the big boy. We will assemble Charcuterie Houses – like gingerbread houses made of meats, cheeses and raw veggies, hald in place by cream cheese. We will be masked while we do it then take them home and eat "together" on Zoom.

We usually entertain at least 2-3 dozen family members on Christmas day. We took that money and donated to a nearby family whose earners were all unemployed since April, to allow them to have a festive meal and maybe a few small gifts.

We have already begun making calls to friends and family members we won't be able to see. We do video whenever feasible.

We hope that by this time next year we will be together again. Blessings to all of you.
Sue

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@harriethodgson1

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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@harriethodgson1 Harriet, I’m so sorry to hear of the death of your husband. That’s great though that you will now be doing something that will be so enjoyable and fulfilling for you,
I hope you have a good Christmas with family and/or friends.
JK

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@harriethodgson1

I was a caregiver for 23 years and cared for three generations of family members. My husband died on Nov. 28th. I anticipated his death for years and planned consciously and unconsciously for it. My gift to me is a part-time job with the Open to Hope Foundation as Assistant Editor of http://www.opentohope.com
I accepted the job because I have the kind of mind that needs to be busy all the time. Working part-time fits my daily writing schedule and I am thrilled wit h the offer and the timing. Tis a gift I never expected.

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@harriethodgson1– My heartfelt condolences on the loss of your husband.

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@harriethodgson1

Thank you Teresa. I'm dreading Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, but will get through them. Sure wish I had family in town, but I don't.

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@harriethodgson1 It sounds like family is really important to you and they will be missed this holiday season. What kinds of traditions does your family have?

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