‘Tis The Season To Make New Memories

Thanksgiving is here and Christmas is right around the corner. And with the holidays, your family and friends tend to come around. And let’s be honest, you’re either really excited about it or you’re dreading it because ol’ Uncle Scott is so loud you can hardly take a decent 20 minute nap. But let’s put all that behind you, and let’s look at the holidays in a more positive perspective; let’s create memories before the end of the year comes and try a few of the following ideas that may become your family’s new tradition. It’ll cost you little to no money and you can use these ideas around any family gathering, really. And of course, wait until the football game is over before you even think about starting!

Make gratitude jars: Also known as a Blessings or Thankful jar. This could be one of the most tangible gifts you could really give this holiday season. All you need is a type of jar for each family member, like a mason or ceramic jar, pens and strips of blank paper. Label a jar for each family member and have each person write a thing or two that states something you’re grateful for about that family member. All sayings can be anonymous unless you’d like to put your name. This is a good way for each person to know what they possess that makes others grateful for them, and it can be opened and read whenever encouragement is needed. This jar can be kept for years and added onto the next year.

Photo credit: http://www.windsorhistoricalsociety.org/preserving_family_photos_08.html

Photo credit: http://www.windsorhistoricalsociety.org/ preserving_family_photos_08.html

Bring old photos: Maybe your family is the type to have hundreds, if not thousands, of photos from way back when you were a little toot, making messes with your cousins and getting your parent’s undies in a bunch with all your mischief. Reach out to those who will be attending this Thanksgiving or Christmas gathering and encourage them to bring any and all old photos of the family that they have. Imagine the laughs and cries you and your family will get by reminiscing through them. There will be moments someone may have forgotten, or things they never even remembered. But it’s guaranteed you’ll share a few laughs, cry a few tears, and make a new memory. Recommend they bring their own bin so that photos can be maintained and taken home just as easily as they’re brought.

Buy a few disposable cameras: Yes, stores still sell disposable cameras, believe it or not! Buy one or buy three, but leave them around your apartment home with a note that says “Use me, take a picture now & pass me along!” When you get them developed you’ll get to see moments you may not have been able to experience and funny faces you wish you saw more often!

Have your dessert outside: Weather permitting, change it up! After everyone has gone back for seconds from all the delicious home-made food, grab all the dessert and go outside.  Pick the nearest park or use the courtyard at your Camden apartment home. Throw a football around and take bites of that pecan pie in between.

Take a mandatory group photo: Gather everyone – inside or out – and attempt to take a group photo. Make silly faces or make serious ones, but either way, make sure you snag it! Grab a neighbor or a friend, and have them take the group photo for you. You can add it to the wall or create a new album. But whatever you decide to do with it, most importantly, cherish it.

Play a classic board or card game: With all of today’s technology, our kids have really not been exposed to a lot of those classic games most of us grew up with. Wipe off the dust on your Uno cards, take out the dominos, and set up a game of Sorry! Interact with your company, I’m sure you’ll enjoy it!

Finally, gather all the kids and have them wash the dishes! Explain to them how lucky they are to have dishes to wash and…just kidding, or am I?

Whatever you decide to do this holiday season, don’t hold back. Cherish the moments with your family and friends now, create new memories, adopt new family traditions, and invite them back to your Camden home again next year. You won’t regret it.

Some Days I’m a Non-Contributing Zero… But Not Today…

bad day, sad, unhappy, smiley

I was having a "Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day."- photo courtesy of wallpapervortex.com

I’ve noticed that even in Colorado sometimes people have “Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days”. I hear this is true in Australia, too…

I was having one of those the other day…

I had to travel to Las Vegas to work on budgets.  This is not a favorite activity and Las Vegas is not my favorite place to be. It’s not a bad place but my family isn’t there. They are in Denver and I miss them when I travel.

The worst part is that I have to fly there…

I hate to fly.

Packing…trying to fit my toiletries into a ziplock bag…trying to figure out which shoes I might need…stuffing all the reports I may need in a suitcase…driving over an hour to the airport…TSA…waiting…waiting…waiting…

And then more waiting…

You know how it is.

I was in the airport waiting, before I had to do some more waiting and I checked Facebook on my phone. A friend of mine had posted this video….

Of course I had to wait for it to download…

That’s right. I had spent all day complaining about the miracle of human flight and the amount of time it takes my phone to go to space…

I was the non-contributing zero.

That really gave me some needed perspective. I’ve thought about this video a lot since that trip. I’ve realized that I fall into this pattern pretty easily if I’m not careful.

Since then I’ve decided to be more grateful for what I have. I’m happier when I’m grateful.

You would think it would be easy to be grateful when we are blessed with so much but I find it takes effort. Sometimes the pace of our lives is so fast that it takes a lot of effort. 

The end of the year is so packed with things to do that sometimes I miss the holiday between Halloween and Christmas. You know the one with the turkey and the football. What’s it called again?…

This year I don’t want to miss it. So during the month of November, Camden Denver West will post at least one thing every day we are thankful for on our Facebook page. I’d challenge you to do the same thing, or something similar. If you do, let us know how it goes. I’d also love for you to “like” us on Facebook and see what our team comes up with.

If you do, I’ll bet you will be happier and you might just avoid a few “Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Days”