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  • Writer's pictureCharlsie Pecoraro

Can you give ONE small gift this holiday season?

We are living in a time in humanity where the focus is on accumulation of things. I'd like to ask you to take a moment and name a "thing" that has truly brought you lasting happiness. I can almost guarantee that no material thing has created lasting satisfaction. The joy derives from the anticipation of what that thing_________________(fill in the blank) will do to better your existence. In reality, we come on to this planet with nothing and we will leave with nothing. It is up to us to enjoy the adventure we call life.

Perhaps the state of the economy has affected the grandiose nature of your typical holiday spend. You may be feeling sad or even some guilt in not being able to lavish expensive gifts on your loved ones. I challenge you to recall your favorite holidays as a child and into adulthood. My fondest memories are of people and experiences. The presents were secondary, however the anticipation of the season was intoxicating. Our home smelled delicious because of mother's baking and the freshly cut tree in the living room. I would have a gift or two under the tree to shake and try to guess the contents. Grandparents came over for a visit and my siblings were home from college. There was always something new happening at home to look forward to.

The one small gift I want from each and every one of you is to spread kindness this season. One simple gesture creates a ripple affect in the cosmos. I'm not asking you to feed a family of 14 for Christmas (if you want to that is great). What I am suggesting is for each of us to do the simple things. Hold the door open for someone and smile. Treat the harrowed clerk with sympathy and kindness. Pick up a piece of litter on your next walk outdoors. Let others merge into traffic with a smile and wave. Love one another in whatever shape or color or size we are. That is my one BIG, yet small, request from all of you dear readers. Thank you in advance! The world will be a better place because of you.

As you gather with friends and family keep in mind that Christmas is really a birthday celebration for a profound individual who taught us how to love through his words.

Love each other as I have loved you. Greater love has no one than this: to lay down one's life for one's friends.” - Jesus (Yeshua Ben Yoseph)

Cooking on YouTube

My mom's French Toast recipe has always been my #1 comfort food when I am feeling under the weather. I paired it with whipped cream and fresh raspberries, although it is wonderful without any toppings! Click here to watch the video.

Keeping with the French theme, I also launched a video on how to make excellent French Press Coffee. Dust off your French Press and let's brew a cup together. Click here to watch.

Decadent is an understatement for this brownie recipe I found in the cookbook, The Joy of Cooking. You can add your favorite nut of choice or bake them without as I did. This recipe will come out on Sunday, just in time for weekend cooking. Click here to watch.

(I had no clue that The Joy of Cooking was first published in 1936 and has sold over 20 million copies! It is available on Amazon, Walmart and many used book sites. Gift one to yourself this year)!


Things to Do over the Holidays!

  • Ice Skating in Daphne -Ice Skating with Santa on Friday, December 15, 2023 at the Daphne Civic Center. Enjoy a visit with Santa AND ice skating indoors.

  • Reney's Honey Butter Holiday Open House, Saturday, December 16th at 8AM.

  • Southwest Chamber's Christmas Parade, Sunday, December 17th at 2PM, 5055 Carol Plantation Road in Mobile.

  • Holiday Homes Tour on Saturday, December 16th downtown Oakleigh District. Click here for more information.


Have a wonderful week leading up to Christmas! ~ Charlsie


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