Christmas Ideas and a beautiful newborn!

Well, here it is, 3 am, and again I’m here… about to babble on for your entertainment.  Tonight I’ve been editing photos from Miles’ newborn session and working on my Christmas shopping.  Now, I LOVE giving gifts, and Christmas is a time where it’s really easy for me to go overboard and spend way too much.  This year, I sat down and made a budget… I’m not allowed to go over it.  Guys, your friends and family DON’T want you to go into debt so you can give them lots of presents.  I know that the pressure of the holiday season makes us all feel like if we don’t go overboard, we risk being cheap, but honestly, if your loved ones are thinking this, I would consider finding someone else to love.

Whew.  Heavy topic, but one I struggle with.  Christmas is my favorite holiday, which is saying something since I hate cold weather!  I love that during this one part of the year, it’s ok to adorn your house/car/lawn with tacky lights and blow-up figurines.  I love baking.  I love the colors red and green, and gold and silver.  I love drinking hot chocolate and working under the gentle glow of my Christmas tree.  Most of all, I love the subtle change in people that reminds them to think of others.  Man, sometimes I need the reminder.  I worked at Starbucks for a little over a year, and let me tell you, most of the time it was miserable.  I loved making coffee, I loved my co-workers, heck, I even liked the company… but the customers were so bad sometimes I would leave work in tears.  I’m talking full-out yelling and annoyance and anger, all over a mocha frappachino that I would of happily remade to their liking.  Something about Christmas though…. people wait in line for well over 20 minutes and still have a smile on their faces when the counter comes.  Grace seems to be the default for most people during this time, and I love that.  Christmas = Joy is my head, and just the thought of it lifts my spirits.

Anyway, back to the Christmas shopping.  I sat here, starring at my computer, racking my brain for the 50th time on what I could possibly get most of my family and friends that seem to have it all already.  I just wanted to throw something out there for y’all… feel free to send it right on back.  Here is a list a few organizations that I’ve found that have awesome products and also awesome visions for change.

1. World Vision [www.worldvision.org] – This is place that holds a special place in my heart.  They have a sponsorship program, and I’ve been blessed to sponsor and receive letters back from an amazing boy named Bikash.  If sponsorship is not for you, they have all kinds of other things you can give…. from supplies for families in the US to a goat for a family overseas.  My personal favorite is the option to send soccer balls to kids who love the game, but can’t afford a ball to play.  I know what profound impact this sport can have on a child…. seeing as I once was a kid who could of turned to bad things, but instead turned to futbol.  Every donation has the option of including a card for the recipient stating the impact the gift had.

2. Toms Shoes [www.tomsshoes.com] – Everyone and their dog has heard of this company by now, I’m sure.  They match every pair of shoes purchased with a pair for someone who would otherwise go bare foot.  It’s something that I take for granted the most, right up there with my glasses…. I’ve never had to function without shoes before.  But try to imagine your life without them.  Ouch, not to mention infection and everything else that comes with it.  These guys are on the radar now, and they are making a difference!  They also have a cool necklace and shirts to buy.

3.  The Love Alliance [http://www.thelovealliance.net] – These guys work for social justice.  You’ve probably seen shirts or stickers proclaiming “Remember the Poor”, or “Remember the Hungry”.  That’s these guys.  They basically hand you the information you need to make a difference, among other things.  Their store is at http://thelovealliance.storenvy.com/ and they have shirts, bags, buttons, stickers, etc. that carry a great message and are also really cute.

4.  Invisible Children [http://www.invisiblechildren.com/home.php] – This is cause that works against war and the use of children as soldiers.  They are also working to rebuild war-torn Uganda.  They have a program for the people to use native reeds on make them into bracelets, which they pay fair wages for and sell in the store.  Each one has a story attached.  They also have bags, coffee, shirts, and beanies for sale.

These are just the causes I know of… There are literally hundreds of organizations that are working for change.  Do you know of any I should look into? I’d love to hear about them.  All of this is not to say that you shouldn’t buy your significant other Call of Duty Modern Warfare 2 for Christmas {hint, hint…. ;)}.  I’m just saying to think about it.  🙂  And now, may I present Miles, the adorable newborn.  One of my very best friends was blessed with him less than a month ago, and man, he’s gorgeous.

Good night! 🙂

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One thought on “Christmas Ideas and a beautiful newborn!

  1. I always love reading your blogs. The pictures of Miles are so amazing, you truly were blessed with an awesome gift to catch people at their best. We’re lucky to have you! I also love the new logo, super cool!

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