As I ran through the dark of morning, the mind wandered to the seasonal influences that are now beginning to make their presence known. Starbucks’ Coffee has their Christmas cups out. The streets of Vancouver are now illuminating certain lights on the main drags and St. Paul’s Hospital is once again being adorned with the Lights of Hope. Some of the construction cranes in Vancouver have already been decked out with Christmas lights as well.
Yes, it is that time of year when I begin to think about gift giving. I will have my daughter over and we can do a bake fest on an upcoming Sunday. I’ve got some really cool ideas for gifts, so now I am piecing the things together in my head with the monetary tally being added in the background. I always try to choose things that people can and will use. Next I will sit down and make my lists. Then the fun begins of roaming through this city of mine and exploring all her little hidden treasures. Trust me when I say Vancouver has many of them.
When my daughter was young the budget was always very tight at Christmas. I began the tradition then of scouring Vancouver’s various neighborhoods and finding the perfect gift at a cost that was enviably low. And I do find great stuff! Last year I actually had prints made of several of my favorite photos that I had taken and I framed them and gave them as gifts. It warms the soul to walk into a friend’s home and see my photo proudly displayed on their walls.
For me there is a sense of adventure when I begin to move through the various neighborhoods and begin to develop ideas as to what to do for Christmas for the coming season. I have found so many cool stores over the years that I now frequent throughout the year, but I always look to add to the list. That is part of the joy in all of this for me. Vancouver stands before me just waiting for me to unwrap some of her new secrets. We have played this game for years.
The season is fast approaching that makes many of us feel the warm fuzzies. I am always very much aware that many are alone at this time of year, and for these souls it can be a very lonely time of year. I do what I can in terms of helping out. There is a restaurant in New Westminster called the Heritage Grill and for the past several years, the owner Paul has provided a free turkey dinner to all who come down on Christmas day. This to me is so very admirable. I stopped in last year to bring some chocolates to the staff and wish everyone a very Merry Christmas and Paul tried to get me to have the dinner, however, I had already indulged plenty. I did nibble on very small piece of pumpkin pie that we negotiated on.
It is these wonderful discoveries of caring that makes me feel full to bursting. This year I have decided that rather than offer up chocolates I will do the baking thing and take those around to people who work at the coffee shops, restaurants, pubs, gyms and groups that I frequent throughout the year. I might well pepper the offerings with a few choice chocolates. It is Christmas after all.
It is fast approaching as well my one year anniversary of having my heart procedure and it was the day after this occurrence that I began this blog. It has been a very insightful year. Despite the challenges, I feel blessed in so many ways. It is Friday and I may, after Yoga this evening, begin my quest. Time to go play with my lovely lady, Vancouver.
Have a fabulous day everyone.