THE SILVER LINING To Your Life & Health
T he H olidays R epresent R ebirth
Find Peace in Starting Over
The holiday season has different meanings for everyone, and for me, it represents rebirth. Every day, you have the opportunity to rejuvenate your life and find joy around every corner. When you have a bad day, you can hit the reset button and start all over again, which allows you to progress beyond past challenges. We often hear that we should celebrate Christmas all year long, and the concept of rebirth is no different. We can do it every day, and I find a rebirth mindset crucial yesterday as old news. Starting the day off with baggage creates a mood that affects the rest of the day, so I wipe the slate clean and try to look for opportunities instead. Christmas is a perfect time to let go of life’s burdens. With the holidays centered on grace for others, take a moment to forgive yourself, too. Forgive yourself for mistakes, and allow yourself to be reborn. Besides rebirth, Christmas also gives me the opportunity to give to my children and my clients. My wife and I love to make Christmas a fantastic experience for our children. Every year, we have a plan and a budget, and every year we go over. It’s a challenge, but when we see the looks to living a life of happiness. When I wake up, I think of
on our children’s faces, it’s all worth it. I also love seeing my wife put her heart into creating the ultimate Christmas for our children. “ CHRISTMAS IS A PERFECT TIME TO LET GO OF LIFE’S BURDENS. WITH THE HOLIDAYS CENTERED ON GRACE FOR OTHERS, TAKE A MOMENT TO FORGIVE YOURSELF, TOO. The older I get and the more clients I work with, the more I realize how important it is to give rather than receive. Some of my clients struggle financially, and if that’s the case, I take them grocery shopping. I do it because, without my clients, I wouldn’t
–Duane Hamilton 1 770-744-1855 I hope everyone finds what Christmas means to them this holiday season. Take the time to slow down and spend time with those closest to you in the new year. The meaningfulness doesn’t need to be profound. You just need to recognize what brings you the serenity you’re looking for and then open your heart to it. have food of my own. They allow me to provide for my family, put my daughter through gymnastics, and fill my tank with gas.
overnight stay or one-day experience. You can also let your loved one indulge in a solo vacation if that’s what they would enjoy. Join the Thrill-Seekers Zip lining, bungee jumping, or skydiving are options for adults of all ages, including the elderly. More and more of those in their golden years are finding excitement later in life by trying new things outside their comfort zones. It’s not for everyone, but with an open mind and a sense of adventure, an adrenaline rush might be the perfect Christmas gift for someone you love. Make a Memory Whether it’s a custom cribbage board, a hand-thrown your donations aren’t lining the pockets of criminals. Never Give by Phone or Email. Charities regularly reach out to past and potential donors through traditional mail, email, phone calls, or text messages. This means fraudsters will mimic their approach with less noble intentions. Because it’s impossible to determine who is on the other end of a call or email, you should never hand over your credit card information to strangers. If you really are speaking to a representative from a legitimate charity, they will direct you to a secure avenue where you can give without worry. Feeling Pressured? Walk Away. A lot of charities set goals they want to reach before the new year, but even groups that are hoping to raise a certain amount of money know better than to pressure donors into giving. Donations should always come from the heart, and it’s a bad
sign if someone insists there’s a deadline for giving. As the Better Business Bureau says, “Responsible organizations will welcome your gift tomorrow as much as they do today.” Only Give to Reputable Charities. Do some research before donating to charities. Look up any prospective charity on Charity Navigator at CharityNavigator.org. This service flags “high concern” organizations suspected of fraud and ranks how reliable established charities are. Even legitimate organizations can be misleading about how they spend their donations. A good rule of thumb is to avoid organizations that spend more than 25 percent of donations on salaries or administrative costs. There are many amazing charities and organizations that do good work. Stay vigilant to make sure you are bringing joy to the world and not falling for a criminal looking to make a quick buck.
During the season of giving, charities receive a much-needed rush of donations as people open their hearts to others. Unfortunately, criminals are all too willing to abuse this goodwill. According to a report from the Justice Department, Americans over the age of 60 lose over $3 billion a year to scams and fraudsters. As charity scams reach their peak, here’s what you need to do to ensure
Experiences Are Greater Than Gifts Give Memories This Holiday Season
Everyone gives gifts this time of year, but are materialistic presents the best way to show your loved ones how much you care? Here are three experiences that make the perfect gifts and might be better than any object you could put under the tree. Schedule a Staycation A staycation provides the perfect solution if you’re looking for prime relaxation on a budget. Pick a destination anywhere within 140 miles of your front door, find a simple activity that you and your loved one would find relaxing, and schedule it. You don’t need to travel far or plan for months. You could schedule a nearby spa retreat or a wine tour, and then choose to make it an
salad bowl, or a handmade art piece, creating something special with a loved one is the best way to give a tangible gift while having a fun experience. Many crafting places will allow you and your loved one to design a personalized creation, which may flourish into a new hobby for you both. If you’re struggling to come up with the right gift, consider giving an experience instead. In the future, it won’t be the next iPhone or fancy handbag you remember; it’ll be the memories you make with others.
2 W ays to K eep in T ouch W ith L oved O nes No One Should Navigate the Holidays Alone
No one should have to navigate the holidays alone, but unfortunately, one segment of our population often does. As families grow and life progresses, you tend to focus on what’s right in front of you — soccer practice, work schedules, travel plans, or a slew of other events. It’s no fault of your own, but in the process, you might lose sight of your elderly family members’ needs. Over time, as younger family members move away and begin their own lives, the elder generation is left on their own. When the holidays come around and everyone reconvenes, it can be tough for those estranged by distance or other circumstances to see their loved ones. That’s why we want to provide you with two ways you can keep in touch and foster meaningful relationships year-round. 1. Weekly Phone Calls You may dread the Sunday evening phone
call to your grandmother when life is busy, but it doesn’t have to be that way. A simple chat with a loved one can be brief, but with the right mindset, you might enjoy it, too. Absorbing knowledge from those who are younger or older than you will help you become well-rounded. Ask the senior members of your family for advice about something you’re going through. You might find their stories and advice to be useful. 2. Write a Letter It doesn’t have to be handwritten, but creating a monthly letter will go a long way in fostering family connections. You can use a platform like this newsletter for updates on the statuses of children, spouses, and siblings so that everyone stays involved in the family dynamic. Ultimately your involvement with older members of the family comes
down to perspective. If you put yourself in the shoes of others, you can see just how vital a simple connection can be. This holiday season, give the gift of companionship. It only takes a few minutes.
30-M inute C auliflower S oup
• 1 small head cauliflower (about 2 pounds), cored and sliced • 1 leek, chopped • 1 medium onion, chopped • 2 cloves garlic, finely chopped • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth or vegetable broth • 1/2 cup heavy cream • 1 tablespoon unsalted butter
• 1 tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil • Salt and pepper, to taste
Inspired by Good Housekeeping
1. In a large pot over medium heat, melt butter into warm oil. Add onion and leek, season with salt and pepper, and cook until tender, about 10–12 minutes. 2. Stir in garlic and cook for 1 minute. Add cauliflower, broth, and cream. Simmer until cauliflower is tender, about 15 minutes. 3. Using a blender, purée in batches until smooth. 4. Top servings with a drizzle of olive oil and a pinch of pepper.
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Renew Yourself This Holiday Season
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Scammed for the Holidays
Give Memories, Not Objects
Reach Out to Your Loved Ones This Holiday Season
30-Minute Cauliflower Soup
Everything You’ll Need for an Ugly Sweater Christmas U gly S weater P arties It’s speculated that the first ugly sweater party took place in Vancouver, Canada, back in 2001. Since then, the trend has become one of the most popular holiday party themes. Come Thanksgiving, you’ll start to see racks in all types of clothing stores lined with hideous sweaters. If you’re ready to jump on the ugly-sweater- party bandwagon this Christmas season, here are a few things to keep in mind. A Fun Trend You Can Easily Follow!
Your Very Own Ugly Sweater Ugly sweaters come in all shapes, sizes, and prices. You can head to H&M or a local thrift store to pick one up. However, if you have a sweater that’s been cozied up for years in the back of your closet or a drawer, now’s your chance to give it new life. Arm yourself with a hot glue gun, thread, and needle, and patch Santa, Rudolph, or Frosty on it. And let it be known that an ugly sweater isn’t complete without sparkles, beads, and sequins galore. What Exactly Is an Ugly Sweater Party? It’s rather simple — slip on your favorite Christmas sweater, gather all your friends and family
members, make sure there are plenty of refreshments and games, and you’re guaranteed to have a top-tier party. A few ugly-sweater-themed games that should be on the agenda include an ugly gift exchange, which is similar to the white elephant exchange, except with the gaudiest gifts you can find; an ugly photo booth, complete with terrible, tacky props; and, of course, an ugly sweater contest. This is the only time of year when slipping into a lurid red sweater with a stuffed Santa sewn on the front is considered trendy. So adorn yourself in the frumpiest, tackiest sweater you can find, and have some fun this December!
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