Green Living, Holidays

Tis the Season For Giving – Got 15 Minutes?


The holiday season reminds us of how much we have. Even if we don’t live in a mansion or own a Mercedes, most of us are rich in material goods compared to many other people. My elderly house, which looks kind of like a summer camp on steroids because people kept adding on to its three rooms until there were nine, none of them with a square line to its name, isn’t fancy, but it keeps out the weather. It’s warm, in season, has a fridge full of food, hot and cold running water and acres of private land around it, although we share it with hunters, hikers and fisher folk. I know how lucky I am to have a healthy daughter, a son who is launched on his own path but still stays in touch and a husband who has a job and a sense of humor. Maybe that’s why, even though I don’t celebrate a traditional Christmas, I do a lot of the things that people who DO celebrate Christmas do at this time of year.

One of the things I find myself doing more during this season is giving and thinking about giving. It’s easy to forget how many people you can help by just giving away a little bit of time. Sometimes, we get so caught up in our busy lives that we feel as if there’s just not another hour in the day to do something to make a difference in someone else’s life and that’s just not true. What if we all set aside just fifteen minutes a day to do something for someone else? What could we do?

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Well, one thing anyone can do is knit for charity. Small woolen socks that a little boy or girl will wear in a cold orphanage where a pair of warm socks might be the only warmth they feel some days. A pretty hat, a shawl for an elder on a reservation or even a very small shroud for the grieving parents of a baby who was lost at birth or very young. Small gestures, but if you think back to times when you were really cold or really sad, I’m sure you’ll remember some little comfort – maybe a hot cup of tea or a blanket tucked in around you – that warmed you and let you know that someone cared.

If you knit or crochet or sew, there are many, organizations that could use your talents. Some of them will even provide the materials and instructions. Some of them are local – maybe a hospital or nursing home or shelter near you. Some of them are international. Here are links to some of them, but you can find more on the Net by searching on “charity” and your hobby of choice – knitting, crochet, sewing, and probably other crafts or hobbies that I haven’t thought of.

If you know of other charity craft organizations, send them along or put them in a comment and I’ll add them to my list of links. And, speaking of things you can do in 15 minutes, I need to go make a loaf of bread and some yogurt for tomorrow. Next time I have an extra fifteen minutes, I’ll post the recipes for how to do that, and you don’t even need a bread-maker or a yogurt maker.

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AuthorsJenny Pullen from

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