Healthy Gift Giving Ideas for 2012!

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I love this time of year, I really really do, and thanks to my mom’s genius plan that she put into place years and years ago, I appreciate the holidays even more.  When I was about 12 years old, my mom put her foot down and decided to take a more realistic and sane approach to this often crazy and stressful time of year.  As children, we never had buckets of money laying around.  My dad worked as a school teacher and my mom choose to stay home with us and on a school teachers salary, my mom made up for our one parent income by making most of our clothes by hand, maintaining a year round garden, making all of our food from scratch, and planning our family entertainment around board games or playing music together.  With that being said, Christmas time for us meant being frugal, yet still joyful.

My mom’s “genius plan” that she came up with all those years ago was quite simple.  The kids would get a few gifts, and my parents would donate a little bit of money to a favorite charity.  On Christmas day, when the aunts, uncles and cousins would arrive, we would have a White Elephant Gift Exchange, and some of my favorite holiday memories consist of our entire family laughing hysterically at the funny, thoughtful, or silly gifts that each family member would wrap.  Did any of us feel deprived? No way. The relief of NOT purchasing extravagant or unnecessary gifts for every person in our family was wonderful; and instead we all felt good about buying one simple or funny gift to share and many of us have followed in my mom’s footsteps of giving to a favorite charity.  Of course, and at the holidays especially, I miss my mom terribly; however, I’m so grateful for all that I have learned from her and every year I hold my children a little tighter, grateful to be here with them and hopeful for many more Christmas day’s together with the ones I love.

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My Holiday Ramblings and Our Christmas Menu

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Wow, I can’t believe it’s almost here.  Christmas again.  I really do love the holidays but  I always find myself feeling nostalgic and a bit emotional as we head towards the 25th of December.  I miss the simplicity of how it used to be when I was little; when my mom was still with us and the innocence of not knowing that someday we would have to face Christmas without her. I miss when my grandma’s house in Huntington Beach, CA would be our warm winter escape from our old and drafty farmhouse in cold Northern California.  I miss the wonderful feeling of when the two week break from school would seem to last forever. [Read more…]

Handmade Healthy Christmas Gift Ideas

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Christmas Gift

 

*Another post to enjoy from Katie of Wellness Mama!

It is hard to believe that Christmas is fast-approaching already. If you have other paleo-enthusiasts on your list, or just want your gift to have a positive impact on the person you give it to, handmade gifts can be the best way to go.

After all, what can you get for a paleo enthusiast who doesn’t eat processed foods, works out with minimal equipment, and sometimes even goes barefoot or wears minimal shoes? [Read more…]