It’s hard to believe that 2016 is almost over, and yet, here we are, last month’s pumpkins rotting on the porch, and plans for the holidays shaping up nicely (or at least getting added to the to-do list).
We have much to be thankful for around here – a loyal following, great businesses who are willing to make RFM available to their visitors, and our advertisers who help us keep the lights on month after month (please patronize the businesses you see in RFM!).
I always feel good when I drop thank-you cards in the mail, and when I see the gratitude loop it creates (getting a “thank you for your thank you” email), I have to laugh. I received two of those recently, with comments that a handwritten note seems to be a lost art, and appreciation for the time I took to write them. And in this busy season, which seems to be twelve months long these days, our time is the most precious thing we can share with others, whether it’s by writing a note or picking up the phone and giving someone a call (another lost art in this world of “texting it in”).
Another meaningful way to share your precious time is by making a meal for a friend, neighbor, church member, or whoever in your life needs a little extra help for whatever reason. I always say the best thing about having my babies and my back surgery was the plethora of meals that were prepared and delivered to us when we got back home (okay, second best thing in the case of the babies!). When I’m in the loop on a meal train (there are two great websites for this, by the way: mealtrain.com and takethemameal.com), I typically and selfishly think, “Geez, I don’t even have time to make my own family dinner!” And admittedly, I sometimes go the restaurant or grocery store gift card route instead, or maybe carryout from Costco if I’m really feeling ambitious. But when I recently took dinner to our hard-working event coordinator, Anne (who many of you have no doubt met at events around town), who is recovering from shoulder surgery, I can’t tell you how good it felt to take time from my own self-induced busyness to help someone else. As it turns out, and as most of you probably already know, it doesn’t take any more time to make a meal for four than it does for eight. And the bonus is that my own family enjoyed a well-thought-out meal, rather than the usual haphazard collection of questionable nutrition that is often placed before them. And as much as I enjoy receiving a thank-you note, I most certainly did tell sweet Anne not to write me one. She needs to concentrate on healing that shoulder so she can get back out and talk to more readers at family events all over Richmond.
All this to say: This holiday season, you might try giving the gift of your time. A note, a call, a meal, a leisurely visit with a friend, or some volunteer
time with any or our area’s fantastic nonprofit groups. The gift of your time is truly the best gift of all. Happy Thanksgiving from all of us at RFM!