Thursday, November 26, 2009

Giving Thanks On Thanksgiving And Every Day

"Gratitude is not only the greatest of virtues, but the parent of all the others." Cicero

Food usually becomes the centerpiece for most of our celebrated holidays, and we forget about the true meaning of these occasions. Though there is no consensus about the actual history behind the Pilgrims and the first Thanksgiving, we do know it was a day to give thanks to God and the bounties of the harvest. They had gone through challenging times, losing half the Pilgrims during the first harsh winter, but eventually prospered. But even through the hard times, they gave thanks for God's blessings.

We too are going through difficult times, and as challenging as it might be to find something positive to be grateful for, we should be thankful for what we do have, even if it's not much. If you look close enough at your life, you can always find something to be grateful for.

But Thanksgiving shouldn't be the only day to give thanks for our blessings, we should find things to be grateful for every day. In fact, there have been studies proving that gratitude and giving thanks brings health and happiness to those who do so on an ongoing basis.


Journaling is one way to to take stock of our daily blessings. Before you go to bed, make a list of all the positive things that occurred, that you can give thanks for. Even if it's finding that one last parking spot in the mall parking lot. Or the fact that you didn't get angry at the slowpoke in the fast lane.

Thank someone if they have been helpful or kind and then return the favor.

In spite of the current political climate, we have much to be thankful for. We still have our freedom and the ability to fight to maintain it. We have people willing to join the military to protect those hard won freedoms. There are still good people in this world who are willing to help those who are less fortunate and to stand up for what's right, even at their own peril.

A very Happy Thanksgiving, and God bless you all!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Little Noah Biorkman, Michigan boy who had requested Christmas cards passed away November 23

Little Noah Biorkman, the 5 year-old boy who was battling cancer and had requested Christmas cards for an early Christmas celebration, passed away on Monday, November 23rd. He received more than 1 million cards from all over the world and the family is extremely grateful for "the outpouring of love and compassion .."

They have requested the following:

In lieu of cards and flowers, the family is asking that donations be made in Noah's name to either of the following:

Department of Pediatrics and Oncology
University of Michigan
1500 East Medical Center Drive D4202MPB
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48109-5718

Checks payable to: The University of Michigan -- Noah's Pediatric Oncology Fund

or to
Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan
230 Huron View Blvd.
Ann Arbor, Michigan 48103

Checks payable to: Make-A-Wish Foundation of Michigan -- Memo: Noah Biorkman

Rest in peace, little one.

Crossposted on Confessions of a Closet Republican

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Keys to happiness: Perspective is what makes a life worth living

As annoying as some of the forwards that inundate our email inboxes are, there are some gems that put everything into perspective and have to be shared. They come as little reminders.

This one is about how having the right perspective can make a huge difference in the way we view our lives. We can choose to see the glass half empty or the glass half full. We can choose to be happy or not. Happiness is not predicated on how much we have, but on how much we appreciate what we have.

I remember working on a project in Nicaragua as an on-camera spokesperson for an international charitable organization. We filmed at various locations including the local garbage dump in Managua. People lived on site and made their meager living collecting scrap metal etc. that fetched a few córdoba. And even though these people were living in abject poverty, in makeshift shacks in the middle of a filthy landfill, they were happy with what little they had.

Appreciate what you have, even if it's not much, because it could be more than you imagine.

One day , the father of a very wealthy family took his son on a trip to the country with the express purpose of showing him how poor people live.

They spent a couple of days and nights on the farm of what would be considered a very poor family.

On their return from their trip , the father asked his son , "How was the trip?"

"It was great, Dad.."

"Did you see how poor people live?" the father asked.

"Oh yeah , " said the son.

"So , tell me , what did you learn from the trip?" asked the father.

The son answered:

"I saw that we have one dog and they had four."

"We have a pool that reaches to the middle of our garden and they have a creek that has no end."

"We have imported lanterns in our garden and they have the stars at night.."

"Our patio reaches to the front yard and they have the whole horizon."

"We have a small piece of land to live on and they have fields that go beyond our sight."

"We have servants who serve us, but they serve others."

"We buy our food , but they grow theirs.."

"We have walls around our property to protect us , they have friends to protect them."

The boy's father was speechless..

Then his son added , "Thanks Dad for showing me how poor we are."

Author Unknown

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

URGENT: Christmas Card Request For Dying Boy

UPDATE: On November 23rd, little Noah Biorkman passed away. He received more than a million cards. Please do not sent any more. See my other post if you want to donate to charity in his name.

5 year-old Noah Biorkman is dying of Neuroblastoma cancer. He has been battling it for almost half his young life. He loves Christmas cards and since they don't think he has much longer to live, his mum is celebrating Christmas early, and has requested cards or letters for her little boy.

This has been checked on Snopes, and it is for real! It's something one needs to act upon now, before it's too late. Mrs. Biorkman is friends with the a.m. DJ on Michigan radio station WKSR and sent an email with the request.

Christmas Cards Requested
Posted on November 04, 2009

Christmas will come early for a five year old Michigan boy this year. Noah Biorkman is battling cancer and is not expected to live much longer.

Noah’s mother and WKSR morning personality Ed Carter went to school together years ago. They keep in touch by email. She mentioned the early Christmas for her son in an email to Ed today.

Mrs. Biorkman is asking for Christmas cards for her son. If you would like to take time to send a card or letter, send it to:

Noah Biorkman
1141 Fountain View Circle

South Lyon , Michigan, 48178.

Crossposted on