Friday, November 21, 2014

Sweet Salvage ~ Over The Rooftops Part II

Yes, we're continuing to take you 'Over The Rooftops' and Transport you to a place of Christmas Fantasy come to Life here at SWEET SALVAGE in Phoenix, Arizona.

What are some of the Sights, Sounds, Smells and Reasons that make Christmas particularly Special and Memorable to you my Friends?

For those of Faith is goes far beyond the trappings of Christmas of coarse... but I have to admit that along with it being a Poignant Holy Celebration that brings my Heart and Spirit especially close to the Reason for the Season, Christ our Lord who is the Center of it all, everything else about how we Celebrate the Holidays has become Special and Endearing to me as well.

As a Child the Sense of Wonderment, Soaring Imaginations and Fantasies that I so wanted to be Real and Tangible always were during Christmastime.  My Family made it a point to instill not only our Faith, but also make Holidays and Holy Days ultra Special and I carried on that Tradition with the Rituals we eagerly anticipated each year.

We also incorporated and adopted some of our own Annual Traditions and Rituals along the way and they became an Important part of how and why we Celebrated as we do.   I also became Interested and quite Fascinated actually by how others Celebrated the Season.

Whether one went Simple or Extravagant... Spiritual, Solemn, Joyful, or Playful... I Enjoyed it ALL!  Each way of Celebration that was Heartfelt made you Truly Feel the Emotion evoked with the Style of Celebration.

The trappings of Christmas pretty much run the gamut and so the variety is practically endless nowadays... much moreso than I remember as a Child.  But in a Good Way actually for those of us who really get into Creating an Atmosphere for our Celebrations and just Love to Decorate and Style for the Occassion!!!

To Create something Magical, Enchanting, Memorable and Inviting during a time when you will be Receiving more Guests and Family than most other times of the year into the Home is a Gift in and of itself I feel.

Don't you just Love to visit Friends and Family during the Holidays if you are able?   Don't you just Love to visit almost any House of Worship, Retail or Commercial location that actively participates in the Celebration as well and makes it feel particularly Special and Significant rather than just like any other day or Season?
 To Experience the Sights, the Sounds, the Smells and the Reasons behind what everyone has put into charging the Atmosphere of their Space with something Special that they are willing to Share has often been all the Gift that I need during the Holidays actually.   But don't tell Santa that... he can bring whatever he knows I Adore and put it under the Christmas Tree at Home as well!  *Winks*

But I wasn't the only one putting in my Requests with Santa!   My Friend Judy and I double teamed him at the Event with our extensive Wish Lists!    Us die hard Treasure Seekers are insatiable you see!  *Smiles*

Along with all the hype and Commercialization there are usually much deeper reasons for most people and I Enjoy hearing their fond Remembrances of Christmases Past and what it Truly MEANS to them.   They don't have to necessarily Share my own Faith or way of Celebrating and it can Mean something differently for them entirely of coarse... but the Sentiments associated with the Season are usually quite Poignant and Profound, so in that we share Commonality.

Though the Holidays can certainly bring it's share of range of Emotion for a variety of reasons, many being profoundly Personal... I do find that generally speaking it is a time of year that Transports people to their Happy Place and a Feeling of Goodwill towards others.  Benevolence and being Charitable are particularly amplified during the Holidays and that warms my Heart tremendously.

Because certainly this World is filled with those that can benefit from the extension of Benevolence and Giving... there is still a multitude in Need and I Believe the Spirit of the Season opens our Eyes, our Hearts and our extended Hand all the more to try to meet the less fortunate at their point of Need.

If we are Enjoying Abundance and much Joy, it multiplies the Experience when we Share and Give a portion to those who are in lack and facing Sorrows and Trials.   My Parents always stressed the Importance of the 'Gift' of Giving... because it has the reciprocity of not only being a Gift to the Recipient, but also a Gift to the Benefactor.

The Joy in Giving to me has always exceeded the Joy of Receiving... and I've never, ever been able to Outgive God... and you won't be able to either, I Promise, He Ensures it in fact!!!  Givers Gain in so many Miraculous ways that defy explanation really.  

In fact... I Challenge you to Test yourself and His Promise by being more Giving in every way of your Time, your Talents and your Treasures.  You will see, the Laws of Reciprocity in Motion will leave you in Awe!   And Giving is Addictive... once you begin and step out in complete Faith and the Right Spirit, dispelling any Fears that have been holding you back from releasing the Generosity you have inside, you'll never feel better! 

And I Suspect, perhaps, that is why the 'Santa Story' became such a popular and integral part of Christmas?  Because Santa was the epitome of Generosity and Providing for others, even if they didn't necessarily 'Believe' in him, he showed up anyway bestowing Blessings and meeting Needs and Desires of the Heart.  
 Sure there are the Myths, the Fables, the sprinkling of Magic, Lore and Fantasy thrown in for good measure to the 'Santa Story', but I've never seen it as opposed to my Faith... just complimentary of it since the basic tenets aren't in opposition to what I Believe anyway about Charity and Goodwill towards all people being extended Sincerely.  I STILL Love seeing the Little Ones who Believe in him spot him for the first time when the Season arrives and see their Sweet faces Light Up and become giddy with Excitement!

I also absolutely Loved that we got to Travel extensively when I was growing up and got to see how other parts of the World Celebrated Christmas.   The Customs, the Traditions and the Rituals of various Cultures in their Style of Celebrating was a Wonderful Life Experience.

And I would be amiss if I didn't also Confess that it makes me Sad to see those who are not Believers or had no Meaningful Celebration and every day is just like every other day for them.   I Respect the Personal Choice of coarse, but the Emotion felt is still there for me, I want to Invite them to be Participants in something so Special, so Sacred so that they can Experience it too.  

To join in with our Family and Dear Friends and not just be on the sidelines of a Celebration looking in, but a part of it with us, in Fellowship and Unity of Purpose.  Perhaps they don't Feel left out or it doesn't bother them to Experience so many others in Celebration around them and not be a part of it, I don't know, but maybe that's what Evokes the Sadness for me most?   Because though it's a Celebration meant to be Inclusive there are those that will exclude themselves from it for whatever their Personal Reasons, Tenets and Choices.

If in fact they have their own Special Celebrations of Faith then it doesn't bother me since they do have a Meaningful Holiday or Holy Day of their own... but what about those who have nothing to Celebrate and lack Faith at all?   That is just very Sad and Tragic to me, so my Heart breaks for them.   

 And of coarse I've also been asked how I Feel about those who DO Celebrate and yet don't seem to have any Idea or Conviction about Why they're Celebrating?  They are participating and perhaps its not even a Holy Day for them, just another Holiday... but if it is Meaningful for them in some kind of way, I personally don't Feel one way or the other about that... Be Joyful, I'm Glad you are a Participant in your own way and Style.

Yes, the Holidays can be a particularly Thought Provocative Time and Introspective.  Along with all of the hustle and bustle there can be the Pressures and Demands we put upon ourselves, or that we allow others to put upon us, that we needn't have really.

  If you find that the Holidays are particularly Stressful for you perhaps it's Time to step back and find the answers to why that is and rectify it with Change that can relieve you of Stress, Dread, Pressures and Demands or whatever Negative Energy is being conjured up by how you're going about things during the Holiday Season or exposing yourself to un-necessarily.

When I think of the Naughty and Nice Lists it is tempting to assess which side we've mostly been on throughout the year isn't it?   Have we swayed between the two?   Have we been more on one side than the other?  And which side has that been and do we have a Peace about it?   Am I going to tell you what my Personal Assessment was?   Well, I could, but then I'd have to kill you, right?  *Winks*

I find that with the Children... well, they suddenly become Aware of which side of The List they've mostly been on and try to have an Absolution of sorts to get Right with that if they've been more on the Naughty side and suddenly there is that Conviction about how that might play out under that Christmas Tree?  *Winks*

The G-Kid Force REALLY Try to Be Nice-er around the Holidays... but Man that's a LOT of Pressure for them apparently and they will ultimately Short Circuit on how Demanding being Nicer really is for them!!!!!!!   *LOL*

I mean if you've spent most of the year in your Egocentric Little Universe thinking it's all about you all of the time and being Mean Spirited to some Loved Ones on a regular basis to Delight yourself or whatever other vague reason you do that... what is one to do?!??!??  *Ha ha ha*  

 That Transformation simply cannot be done in a nanosecond just because Christmas is on the Horizon and those Incognito Santas and his Help not yet Suited up and milling around in Public might notice or be told and you'll be ratted out!?  *Gasp!*  I mean, any Guy who is Old, Overweight and with a long Whitish Beard and Glasses is Suspect!!!  It takes Time to Morph into the Golden Child and be a Vision of a Sugarplum Fairie bestowing Fairie Dust and Smiles to everyone in sight!

Both Kiddos are having a Difficult Time... they always do... the Holidays can just be too much Stimulation... too much Pressure to Behave... too much... EVERYTHING!   They are so very WANTING and narrowing that List of Desires to something not so Fantastical can be rough!  Because they know they're just some of many... we got a whole lotta G-Kids now to Indulge and they've got that Special Dilemma of being Raised by G-Parents... and nobody Working... so it is different than any Kiddos in a more Traditional or Ideal Setting.

Emotions can run fairly High about that aspect of it too for them.  Invitations to spend the Holidays NOT with us aren't as plentiful as when they were littler and not so much Work.  I was gonna say Cuter, but hey, could they get any Cuter than they've always been... I think not!  *Winks*   So they Wonder if they'll get to spend some of the Holidays with extended Family and Special Friends or not this year?  We just have to wait and see how it plays out and Roll with it however it does.

I'm sure many blended and Non-Traditional Families Experience a similar situation... it can become Complicated, especially during the Holidays.   I've always been very flexible and adaptable about it... we'll Make Do on the Fly if we have to and still make it as Special as we can. 

One year the G-Force even had to spend Christmas Eve and Christmas Day unceremoniously dumped off at a BFF's House because The Man had a Medical Emergency and so Gramma had to spend both days at the VA Hospital... Life happens... but it can be rougher when you're just a Kid Dealing with that in your Reality.  We don't talk about THAT Christmas very much.

And this Christmas Season my Brother let me know the other day that Mom had yet another Congestive Heart Failure and the Docs have given her an Expiration Date of just a couple of weeks now.  Not that she hasn't gone past her alleged Expiration Dates many times over the Decades of being Chronically battling significant Health Crisis, Grim Odds and prognosis, but being tough as old boots... but the possibility exists that it could be another Sombre Holiday?

Dad passed from Time into Eternity just after his Birthday and a Thanksgiving, he was actually born on a Thanksgiving Day and at the Hospice he told me he wasn't going anywhere until AFTER he Celebrated his Birthday and one last Thanksgiving... and he didn't, True to his Word.  


But it does make for every Thanksgiving to be a rather Sombre one for me all the same, even after all these years.   I don't know that I want a repeat performance of Attempting to Celebrate a significant Holiday right about the Time a Loved One is transitioning or transitions to the Afterlife... it's brutal!

Yes, everyone has to Die sometime... but nobody really wants the Departure Date to be on a significant Holiday because then forevermore it's tainted with that deeply Emotional Memory.  It can even make it feel somewhat Wrong to be in Celebration Mode when Grief is also present and you've got to move thru those Stages during what should be a Joyful and Happy Time.

I'm rather Thankful tho' that in my Mom's Culture a Wake is the Religious Rite performed and accompanied by Festivity to Honor the Decendent's Memory and Life.  So she has always told me that when it's her Time she wants us to Celebrate her Life exhuberantly just as much as we will Mourn our Loss of her.  

 I will try... but it's difficult to face the Mortality even of an Aging Parent.   I know she's had a good run and is ready for whenever she will be Called Home now... she has a Peace about it and so we must as well.   She's been particularly ready to be Reunited with all the Loved Ones who went before her... at her Season of Life there are more of them there than here now... one of the Sorrows of Outliving everyone of your Era.

So here at our Home we've got a lot of Conflicting Emotions going on right at the Holidays again... and you never quite get used to that really and it can be quite Draining and Exhausting Physically and Emotionally.   So I have REALLY needed my Happy Places to Escape to even more than usual.

The Man is going to have a Brother pick him up for Thanksgiving and take him to his Home State to Celebrate with Extended Family.  I think it will be a Good Thing for him to see them all again and to have Quality Guy Time with the Brothers and Nephews that I can't provide here at Home.  It will also give this Caregiver a brief Respite to be down to only Caring for two rather than three. 

 But he's got some Anxieties about Traveling out of his present Comfort Zone and without me or leaving Home to be Cared for even by Extended Family, since they're not all used to how he now 'Is' after the Traumatic Brain Injury.  But the Kiddos and I cannot go so I don't want him to miss the opportunity, it's Priceless IMO!   I only Wish I had the same opportunity to take off solo and spend Quality time with Mom and my ailing little Brother during this Holiday especially, since there might not be another chance.  But you never know... Miracles still happen... and at Christmas Time especially, we always Believe and Hope they will!

Blessings from the Arizona Desert... Dawn... The Bohemian

1 comment:

  1. Hi, your pictures are heavenly bliss, they sooth my soul, such a creative talent, pure wonderfulness, thank-you x


A life touched by God always ends in touching others. - Erwin McManus

I will love the light for it shows me the way, yet I will endure the darkness for it shows me the stars. - Og Mandino (1923-1996)

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