Sweet Sweet Spirit of Christmas!

I love this time of year with the jingle bells and corny holiday movies. Christmas will soon be here and I feel that sweet, sweet pureness of spirit.

Christmas Tree Lights

Christmas Tree Lights © 2013 Pat Ruppel

It’s quiet these days in the old homestead with just hubby and I.

Our daughters are now grown and married with families of their own. We are looking forward to seeing them over the holidays but it’s different these days ― not the same as when they were small children bouncing through the house.  Continue reading

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It’s the Little Things that Matter

Giving – Microsoft Clipart

The other day, my husband did something for me without saying a word and I didn’t notice it until it was almost time for bed.  A small gesture, nevertheless everyday love, expressed this little way struck me and sparked the writing of this post.

I’ve been bringing in plants every day acclimating them to inside temperatures for winter because the temperatures at mountain elevations cool down real fast after the sun goes down.

Almost time to turn in, he looked at the thermometer and commented on the temperature 48° and I jumped up thinking, “I forgot to bring in my plants”.

I then noticed they were already inside.  I had appointments and errands to run earlier and, as it got late in the day, my husband brought them in.  It’s what he does – a lot more than I.

It’s the little things that say: “I care”, “I’m here”, and “I love you!”  Whatever type of relationship you have, the little things count – they matter.  Whether you’re a couple, living at home or single with your dog, you notice the little things and respond.  They are important.

You have a pet, your favorite companion, there to greet you when you come home every night like you’re the greatest person alive!  No time is measured, expectations or explanations – just love, love, love – right now.

We live for the connections with one another, friends, family and the world.  We can’t wait for the next text, tweet and reach for a written letter first in the mail.  How we show our thoughts and communicate in the little things all gives us purpose.  When we express consideration through a phone call, send a “Thinking About You” note or pick up a treat at the store you know he loves gives life meaning.

Do you remember the last time someone did a little something for you that touched your heart or how good it felt to send some fresh, garden vegetables over to the neighbor?  Maybe, it’s been a long time since you’ve seen those little things.

Then, it’s time to pick up the phone and call a brother or sister you haven’t talked to in a while or whatever little thing seems right to you.  It doesn’t take much but it’s so worth it and feels so good!

Pat – from the ol’ kitchen table ~~ Put a smile on my face and leave a comment or question!

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Goodwill – Still Alive!

Microsoft Word Clipart

A story on the local news touched my heart recently that renewed my faith in the basic goodwill of people.  You may challenge me on this and say, “Pat – Goodwill? Where is it when all I see is hate and greed blasted all over the media, internet and newspapers every day!  How can you trust anyone?”

You’re right. Scam artists are ‘crawling out of the woodwork’ creating new ways to get your identity and smugglers hustling their drugs across the border in bizarre ways – but, then, a story comes along.

It’s a story about a military family with more-than-your-everyday struggles sending out a call for help for Jake their beloved service dog with severe hip dysplasia.  This soldier is not only struggling with his own health issues and his wife’s but now his one true friend and buddy is in pain and in need.

Karl Hofle has just about reached his limit with what he can endure but then you see the response from all over the country and Canada – it’s overwhelming.  They needed $10,000 to cover operation expenses or, according to their vet, their companion would have to be put to sleep.  By the end of the day $37,000+ was in the account. It’s the rallying around this family and outpouring of generosity and willingness to help that is beautiful and touching.

I know there is a lot of corruption in the world today and we have to be smart in how we shop, transact our business right down to checking out who we connect with on Facebook and Twitter.  I just registered for an online networking course and for my protection my transaction was held until cleared by all parties because the funds were being sent out of the country.

I’m thankful for the protections we have in place in this country but even more for the freedoms we share and enjoy for which a heavy price was paid.  The United States is unique in that we’ve always opened our borders to everyone no matter race, religion, or belief – political or otherwise – and the right to express our differences.  Our basic culture has been to share and reach out to one another.

It’s our nature to help even though that’s challenged today in other parts of the world where our very presence is met with death, anger and hate.  Our faith in each other is even being tested within our borders in homes and businesses across every town and city by mistrust as a result of the rampage of fraud and corruption.  But the basic goodwill is still there with the desire to help and will, I believe, always show up when the call goes out.

A long time ago I remember a story a co-worker, new to the United States, had told me when her car broke down going home from work.  In telling the story, it wasn’t so much the difficulty in getting the car back on the road as it was in how quickly someone pulled over to help.  She said in her native country that was unheard of – no one ever stops to help someone broken down on the road.

I never asked why or got into the details because I was so taken back from her reaction to a responder to her distress.  We use more caution these days, but I think there will always be those willing to help a person stranded on the side of the road in a broken car.  It’s just the way it is.

In another less dramatic way, I was reminded again in a webinar I participated in how others are willing to offer their knowledge and expertise.  With the status of world events in dire straits (if you listen to the news) it’s refreshing to experience the outpouring of giving in something as minor as a webinar. It felt genuine – not just another ploy of empty promises where someone is bating you with an opportunity to get you to buy something.

Perhaps, if we look more for the goodwill of people instead of what’s bad more will show up and we’ll realize somewhere along the way it was there all the time.

Pat – from the ol’ kitchen table ~~ Put a smile on my face and leave a comment or question!