Painting by Amy Crews

Painting by Amy Crews

Last weekend I headed to town for some quick shopping. I do a lot of people watching and like to spot folks, (especially employees) doing great things. They rarely receive praise – but sometimes, to know that someone noticed, well, it’s Christmas.

Stop #1: The deli counter at a local grocery. Employees were having a grand time, making jokes, handing out samples. It became contagious to the point that nearby stations began to jingle in. Fun! And then one on the employees made the point of saying in front of God and everybody, “You know we can’t work overtime. But I’m gonna take care of that. I’m calling out on Monday for a day off.”  Really? You want to get back at your employer because you can’t work overtime to get more money so you call in for a day off with no pay. Yes, she was a millennial.

Stop #2: A small box store, tons customers and a great Christmas sale. I ran in to purchase ONE ITEM.  Grabbing a cart was too much of a commitment. All too quickly I was caught up in the bargains. Children were everywhere begging parents for toys. HO! HO! HO!

I was in the Christmas section perusing snow globes when two sisters @ ages 4 and 6 approached. They were transfixed by the musical globes, and picked up every one on display. I was a nervous wreck, holding my breath, preparing for a crash. Thankfully, their mother arrived to whisk them

The little girls had affirmed my thoughts on the snow globe so, in addition to a large box I came for, I grabbed a globe. Awkward! Navigating those tiny aisles was like a reality TV show so I put the snow globe inside the box and headed to grab a cart.

The two items were not compatible. The globe slid around inside the box which caused it to tip. BAM! It broke into a million pieces, water and sparkles seeping under floor displays into nearby aisles.  And I was worried about the sisters breaking the snow globes. Good grief.

Immediately an employee was on hand urging me to continue shopping. “This happens all the time,” she said. I was mortified. She could not have been nicer as she shooed me away calling for backup assistance. Glory! Now, I was one of THOSE customers. The employees were over-the-top kind. I spent an additional HOUR in that store all too happy to purchase items I had not planned to leave with.

Stop #3: A large box store (to be fair, I am generally a small business shopper), with Christmas sales offering even BIGGER bargains. Again, I was there for ONE ITEM – the same item I had looked for previously – so again, no shopping cart. Another pair of little sweet sisters appeared, trying on Santa hats and headbands. Let’s just say that before I got out of this store, CUSTOMERS were asking if they could grab a cart for me.  The lessons from the previous store were banging against my stubborn streak. An astute employee approached and directed me to a check out station. I had a flashback to the time I was 9-months pregnant shopping for groceries. The word was out. Get this woman out of the store!

bcfgolf3_10606150_ver1-0_640_480On my way home I passed a local homeowner’s association holding its annual Brighter Christmas Fund Golf Tournament. Things were in full swing (ho!). Golf carts and golfers were decorated to a tee (ho ho!) and scoring (ho! ho! ho!) big time for local families in need. Being a BCF Board member, it touched my heart as it does every year I drive by the gaiety.bcf

The people I encountered that morning served as reminders of the true gifts of Christmas: people serving others with love, joy, peace, forbearance, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, gentleness and self-control.

Christmas is the spirit of giving without a thought of getting. It is happiness because we see joy in people. It is forgetting self and finding time for others. It is discarding the meaningless and stressing the true values.

The spirit of Christmas is the spirit of love and of generosity and of goodness. It illuminates the picture window of the soul, and we look out upon the world’s busy life and become more interested in people than in things.” – Thomas S. Monson




Spread light and laughter. Be a joy and a blessing always! It’s the greatest gift.


Related post: LIGHT(en) UP! and A Gift That Endures


~From the desk of Becky Morlok~

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