It’s that time of year, y’all. Decorations are going up, cookies are in the oven, and gifts are waiting to be wrapped. But it’s also a time for hope, compassion and charity, something that’s kept me pretty busy this month.
Last year, my team and I started a new holiday tradition. Local students in one of the schools we help design Christmas cards. We pick our favorite and send them out to all our friends, and instead of sending them with Christmas gifts, make a donation to help feed those children. It’s probably one of the best ideas this team has ever had.
This time of year, the American Red Cross is always in need of blood donations. That’s why we are happy to keep partnering with them for blood drives. Our blood drive last week collected over 200 units of blood, and since one unit of blood can help save 3 lives, that’s almost 600 lives!
Helping women and children is at my core, and I was honored to be the honoree at this year’s CHAIRity Fundraiser for the Safe Shelter of Savannah last Saturday. It’s so important that women have resources to help them and their children in times of crises, and the Safe Shelter does an excellent job helping them.
And y’all, I still can’t wrap my mind around the devastation from Hurricane Sandy I saw this week, and how touched I was by all the volunteers at our food donations on Staten Island and in Long Island City. You just don’t get to see everything on TV, and let me tell you, these volunteers are all angels. I was so happy to be able to help out, even if it was just a small part. It’s through working with charitable organizations like the Helping Hungry Homes initiative and advocates like my friends at Smithfield and the UFCW that we can make a difference.
So take a minute from all your running around this month. It will be ok if the decorations aren’t all up right on December 1st, or that the cookies are a little extra crunchy, or you just couldn’t get that one gift your loved one so desperately wanted. Remember that there are so many others who won’t have those luxuries this year. Hug your families tight, count your blessings and say a prayer for all those in need. That’s what the real Christmas spirit is all about.
Visit City Harvest online to learn how to help provide relief from Hurricane Sandy.
Paula, I used to watch your show on Food Network a lot when I still had the TV and cable many year ago. You weren't even that big a star back then. I always love watching you cook on Youtube after I ditched my TV and cable and read your recipes on Food Network Magazines. I hope one day you can return to Food Network and the Food Network Magazine. I stop buying the magazine since you were gone.
Orindary Jane in Love at Last on December 04, 2013 at 2:32 am
Great blog Cindy!!!! I always enjoy reading your post. This Thanksgiving centerpiece is absolutely beautiful and so easy to make.
Ann in A Perfectly Easy Thanksgiving Centerpiece on December 03, 2013 at 8:10 pm
Paula, made your Zucchini Custard Casserole for Thanksgiving and it was Fantastic!!! Thank you so much! Love you & your family. Happy holidays!
Pat Walker in Love at Last on December 02, 2013 at 8:45 pm