Tag Archives: Christmas traditions

5 Friday Faves – Maxwell House, Christmas Traditions, For King & Country, Parenting Well, and New Year’s Resolutions

Quiet week…but the faves keep coming. Here are five:

1) Maxwell House –  Maxwell House is known for its coffee…“good to the last drop”.  It’s been around a long time (over 100 years). I have friends who have never wavered from their loyalty to Maxwell House, despite all the trend-setting coffees of late. This Labor Day, Maxwell House popped up on my Twitter feed with a #LaboronLaborDay contest. All we had to do was follow the company on Twitter, take a picture of ourselves working on Labor Day, and post it with a comment. The grand prize winner (1000 total) would receive the equivalent of a paid day off in gratitude from Maxwell House. I was one of the 1000. A pre-paid Visa card of $150 came in the mail yesterday. If you follow this company on Twitter or Instagram you will see a core value of care for hard workers and for those neighbors in dire straits. I was surprised to receive the card but even more surprised at a company that clearly majors on honoring others…an uncommon courtesy in these times.

2) Christmas Traditions – Part of the joy of Christmas is those traditions we look forward to, year after year. They change as family grows and when life and work take us far from each other. Still, Christmas traditions are deep in our hearts. Rather than grieve when we don’t get to continue them, we tweak them and flex when need be. The joy still comes if we don’t hold too tightly to the what once was. What are some of your Christmas traditions? For us, family get-togethers, meet-ups with friends, Christmas Eve candlelight service, carol singing, frosted cookies and favorite finger foods, Christmas light drive-arounds, movies and TV specials (A Charlie Brown Christmas)…and what else? Quiet times…reading and reflecting on the astonishing account of God coming so close to us through the birth of Jesus.

Photo Credit: Biography

3) For King & Country – I LOVE this band. Musically mesmerizing. Their concerts are personal and electrifying. Their Christmas Tour 2018 is done and they will start an intense touring schedule in 2019 (including a world tour). If you’ve never seen them play, make it happen. Here’s an hour of For King & Country from their Christmas Tour:

4) Parenting Well – In this information age, there is just so much advice on how to parent. So much. I’ve given my share as well… because we love those little people AND their parents. We learn from each other. We can also learn from  the very public lives of British royalty even – Prince William and Kate Middleton. Here’s a bit of wisdom that comes from their parenting values. It should encourage and reinforce what you parents of littles are already doing…without an audience.

5) New Year’s Resolutions –What do we have? 3 more days in 2018 of reckless eating, not enough sleep, routines all turned topsy-turvy. Then…resolved. Right? Actually New Year’s resolutions are an excellent device to help us get off to a strong start into the next year, or month or week. Some of my family and friends treat resolutions with disdain…they never work; they never last. Blog - New Year's Resolutions - davidlose.net - Calvin & HobbsPhoto Credit: DavidLose.net

For me, some do. One, in particular, from this year has sustained me through the whole of 2018. I had resolved that God’s voice would be the first I would tune to each morning. Through prayer; through meditation on His Word. Through listening. Cell phone and computer left off…for that bit of early morning. It’s been a very good thing. How about you? Any resolutions you have simmering in your thoughts? Give them a try…you never know when one will stick.[My resolutions for 2018 – revisiting them for 2019.]

Understanding True Habit Change and Rocking Your New Year’s Resolutions – Deb Mills Writer

New Year’s Day – Resolved – Deb Mills Writer

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So thankful for this life and the people in it…Happy New Year, Dear Ones.

Bonus:

VCU Holiday Gala – A Christmas Family Tradition

Blog - VCU Holiday Gala - Christmas - vcu.eduPhoto Credit: vcu.edu

Christmas is near and with it come all the traditions that draw us closer . Since Nathan Mills first began performing with the VCU Guitar Ensemble, we became regulars in attendance to their concerts. The VCU Holiday Gala is our favorite. It is a fun and whimsical display of many of the musical groups at VCU.

Professor John Patykula directs the classical guitar ensemble and it’s always a delight. The Holiday Gala begins with the guitarists.Blog - VCU Holiday Gala - John Patykula (2)Professor John Patykula, VCU Guitar EnsembleBlog - VCU Holiday Gala - Guitar Ensemble

Various instrumental ensembles and choral groups take the stage in this fast-paced evening.  With all the favorite musical pieces, twinkling lights, and colorfully clad student musicians, it is a feast for the eyes and ears – a sweet start to the Christmas season. We always sit as near to the front as possible, and every year, we are joined by others who do the same (some for every single year of the Gala).2014 December - VCU Music Holiday Gala 015 (2)Blog - VCU Holiday gala - orchestra musiciansBlog - VCU Holiday Gala - Santa Headband (2)

I would love to share video of the VCU Symphony Orchestra’s rendition of Leroy Anderson’s Sleigh Ride, under the direction of Dr. Terry Austin – best performance ever. Since that’s not possible, you just have to come. For the moment enjoy the versions by the United States Marine Corps Orchestra and André Rieu ‘s Johann Strauss Orchestra. Until Friday night…

The Gala evening closes as we exit the concert hall to a lovely cake and punch reception. Here we have the opportunity to greet the professors and students and other guests who are here every year. It’s part of the magic, this afterglow of community.Blog - VCU Holiday Gala = Piano

As if all that wasn’t enough to make a perfect December evening, we drive slowly home via Monument Avenue to look at the stunning Christmas light displays. Happy, happy times.Blog - VCU Holiday gala - Monument Ave. - Phil RigganPhoto Credit: Phil Riggan

What are your family’s Christmas traditions? Would love you to share yours (via comments).

Holiday Gala

Friday, December 4, 2015, 7 p.m.
Sonia Vlahcevic Concert Hall
W.E. Singleton Center for the Performing Arts

The annual holiday gala is celebrating its 29th year! Come out and celebrate the holidays with this concert featuring holiday music. All proceeds benefit The Doorways (formerly the Hospital Hospitality House).

Tickets are $10, and are available on ShowClix.