Tis the season of family, food and thankfulness! How we love to gather around the table to carve pumpkins, go trick or treating and soon have a Thanksgiving feast! The holiday season is coming fast and as tiring as it can be it is the time of year we often realize how much we truely have. Being thankful isn’t always easy….in fact, it can be quite hard sometimes!!! How can we feel thankful when we feel stuck at our jobs, our paychecks don’t stretch far enough, our lives aren’t what we hoped?! I think if we are all being honest with ourselves we can admit that at one time or another we have all struggled with feelings of this nature, myself included! For those of you who have been following my blogs I am sure you’ve noticed I haven’t been blogging as much, well that’s because it has been a crazy month and life doesn’t always allow for time to write! I have been learning a lot this last month. I’ve been reminded yet again what truely matters in life. As I’ve mentioned before that it seems my role may be shifting to caregiver over the coming months….well that’s what matters….the time you have with those around you! What impact do you have with those who you have contact with? Whether you like it or not you WILL have an impact on the people around you….will it be for good or not? Growing up there was a girl I went to elementary school with. We were friends though not best friends. We liked eachother very much and my family knew hers. We both had our own groups of friends but we always said hi to eachother and were friends. When we went to high school we both went our own directions, she was popular, gorgeous and had that personality everyone flocked too. I was shy, quiet and had dealt with a lot of bullying over the years and tried to keep to myself. I always admired her ability to have such a natural charisma…she was just a good person with a genuine good heart and even when her friends were unkind to me she was never unkind at all. We have long since graduated from high school and over the years I’ve often thought of her and wondered what she did with her life….just a last week I read about her in the paper, boy was she successful! She graduated college, studied abroad in Brazil, worked across country in the film industry and had just recently moved back home and was a seamstress for a local theatre! Wow! She really accomplished a lot considering she was only 32! What you need to know is I was reading her obituary….she just died in July of this year. She had a brain aneurysm and died suddenly. Here I am sitting her annoyed with all of life’s inconveniences and she has passed away leaving a greiving family behind. Sounds like I need to readjust my priorities and my view on life. We are all so concerned with seeing our weight go up on the scale, having the perfect healthy diets, looking our best and doing all we can to stop aging, we are focused on preparing the perfect holiday meals, buying presents, getting our kids Christmas clothes for the holiday picture, we are focused on what we don’t yet have or what we deam we should have by now…..but she never got to get married….she never got to be a mom….she never got to grow old and wrinkly…it made me realize that I shouldn’t care that I’ve just put on another couple pounds….that my 5 year old sometimes acts like a teenager…that I’m seeing smile lines and crows feet on my face. What matters is the time we do have here on Earth….and the impact we have on others….for her, she left an impact of honest kindness and love for others. Over the 32 years she lived I knew her for roughly 25 of those years…and I have never heard a bad thing about her. So this holiday season I want to challenge us all to let go of the things that don’t matter….I’m not saying don’t buy presents and don’t pinterest fun decorations for your home….what I’m saying is don’t allow those things to overshadow time spent with family and friends….invite others into your homes and celebrate the season together…even if you’ve overcooked the turkey and burned the dinner rolls, what matters is the heart. Someday we won’t be here anymore and the only thing that is left is the memories others have of us, let’s make them good memories! Make every day count, live, laugh, have joy in each day and always do something kind for someone else!