Your Guide to Holiday Peacekeeping
If you have different ethnicities or religious groups within your family, try to include everyone. Talk beforehand about the rituals or traditions everyone would most like to see and share at the party.
Happy, fun, merry—hopefully the words that come to mind when you think of holiday family festivities. But for some, anxiety, dread and grief seem to pop up. When loved ones gather, it isn’t always a picture perfect holiday. Whether you’re gearing up for a few disagreements, or planning an escape route before you set foot in the door, being prepared is the best way to manage relationships and keep the peace. Ease stress, share the load and learn to enjoy your family during the holidays with a little spirit and a lot of patience.
Refocus your festivity frustrations
But whatever your mood, make sure to celebrate your togetherness to the fullest and take advantage of the hassle-free holiday alternatives – this may end up saving you a tense trip to the department store.
The shopping, the cooking, the expectations and family time can all be overwhelming during the holidays. Sometimes to the point when the merriest time of year ends up feeling not so merry. And with the thick of it right around the corner, it might be to your advantage to consider a stripped down, utterly simplified holiday – making it about spending time with your loved ones, not necessarily what’s in your wallet.
Are you ready for winter?
Top up your fuel tank more often. The air volume in your tank contains moisture that can freeze your fuel lines in cold temperatures.
November, 2013 - There’s no sense in denying it, winter is almost here. By now, you’ve probably shoved your summer attire to the back of the closet, taken out your winter boots and coats, and broken out your cozy winter sweaters. In other words, you’ve gotten yourself ready to face the cold, but have you done the same for your vehicle?
Give your charity a boost. And old electronics the boot.
We know about Black Friday and Cyber Monday. Now there’s Giving Tuesday, kicking off a season of warmth and joy that can lead right into the New Year and the hope of new beginnings.
This year alone, over $120,000 in collection fees were paid out to church groups, shelters, or schools who used the monies to raise support to important local causes—while helping to divert out-of-use electronics from landfill.
This year, Recycle Your Electronics, operated by Ontario Electronic Stewardship (OES), is proud to be a Giving Tuesday partner, and encouraging residents and businesses alike to give back by hosting e-waste collection events for fundraising.
Make calendars more than a stocking stuffer this year
"This is a great way to share your commitment to conservation. Plus, the calendar may provide an inspiration for your next Canadian nature adventure!"
- Crystal Folkins, Nature Conservancy of Canada
Many of us are guilty of the impulsive calendar purchase at the pop-up mall stand over the holidays. And once the purchase is made, it’s often difficult to decide which lucky friend or family member will get to unwrap it this year. While this popular holiday gift has evolved into a rather stale tradition, here are a few ways to integrate thoughtfulness and creativity into this somewhat Plain Jane agenda.
Taking the worry out of winter driving
It’s time to turn the table on the season, and get prepared. As Canadians, we need to be proactive in our own safety, and take the guesswork out of winter driving.
Winter is just around the corner, bringing with it icy roads, snowstorms and slippery conditions. Not only do our Canadian winters have harsh reputations, they also cause Canadian drivers to think twice before hitting the road. In fact, according to the 2012 TD Insurance Winter Driving Poll, one quarter of all Canadians are hesitant to drive during the winter months.
Make this winter season a meaningful one
Your interest in winter wildlife doesn’t have to end there. The Nature Conservancy of Canada is giving Canadians an opportunity to turn their admiration for animals like the snowy owl into a meaningful gift this holiday season.
As the leaves begin to fall and raindrops become snowflakes, it’s harder – or at least a bit less desirable – to seek outdoor activities and make the most of the winter. This frosty season, get in touch with your inner explorer and try winter birding. Throw on some extra layers (wind and water-proof), find a field guide at your local library or bookstore and head on out.
Five ways to face the frost this winter
Warm up your long johns and dust off your snow shovel because winter is moving in. Just because the weather is making some changes, don’t avoid it, embrace it. There are lots of ways to spend your time throughout this chilly season, so here’s five to help you get started – for every kind of winter personality.
This winter, try volunteering with a local organization that offers outdoor opportunities. The Nature Conservancy of Canada is hosting winter conservation volunteer events across the country.
For the snow-pros
Life Changing Gifts – no Wrapping Required
It’s that time of year again when many of us start thinking about giving. Oxfam - an international aid agency that works to end global poverty through women’s rights - is asking Canadians to consider give a life-changing gift this holiday season.
For Parawo and the women of Ilchoroi, receiving goats and sheep has meant a better life for themselves, and a better future for their children. So, why not give a really meaningful gift this year?
How does it work? You visit www.oxfamunwrapped.ca, choose a gift to buy - for example a goat or a set of schoolbooks – you get a card to send to your family, friends, co-workers or clients, and your donation item goes to those who need it most.
Extraordinary friendship between a child amputee and Second World War Veteran
Jenna and Bert
Not only is Jenna grateful for Bert’s friendship, but Jenna’s parents are as well because as an amputee, she faces unique challenges.
While most 15-year-olds consider TV personalities and pop stars to be their role models, Jenna Nixon says 88-year-old Bert Steinhoff, a Second World War veteran, is hers. The two have a special friendship that spans more than 11 years. Although it may appear Bert and Jenna should have little in common, they are both leg amputees and members of The War Amps, allowing them to share a unique bond.