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Natural Awakenings Rhode Island

Grateful Holiday Traditions

Nov 11, 2019 04:22PM ● By Maureen Cary

I love our holiday traditions, centered mostly around family and food. Both Thanksgiving and Christmas dinners are not only feasts of fabulous food but also of love. While we have what to some would be considered a small family, we’d top out at 12 adults plus three kids at the most.  Somewhat easy to count how many with 4 Bill’s – father, brother, husband and son in law -  plus their spouses and 4 of my in laws!  Everyone pitches in; contributing their specialty dishes or a bottle of wine and the kitchen is usually spotless before we leave.  There is typically much conversation, laughter and sometimes-even singing! While we don’t have any official rituals, dad typically says a few words of blessing and thanks before we eat that often brings a tear to my eye.  Every day I wake up grateful for being surrounded by such wonderful people and Thanksgiving with everyone just enriches that feeling even more.

          Ronica O’Hara offers parental tips for instilling thankfulness—one of the most teachable, grow-able strengths—in our children. “Kids With Gratitude: Making Thankfulness Second Nature” is based on emerging research that shows gratitude to be one of the easiest, most effective ways to kick-start happiness and well-being—at any age.

          This month’s feature, “Chasing ZZZZZs: How to Put Insomnia to Rest” examines the many contributors and adverse health effects of compromised sleep, along with natural pathways to a good night’s rest. One of those considerations—optimizing thyroid function—is covered in-depth in our Healing Ways article, “The Happy Thyroid: Seven Ways to Keep It Humming.” In addition to having my thyroid levels checked, there are a few recommendations that I’m going to implement. Sleep is often a challenge for me, seems like many of the women that I speak with have the same issue. 

          Julie Peterson explores the new world of fitness in “Click and Sweat: Virtual Workouts Change the Game.” Training via an app or online is all the rage now for seasoned gym rats and newbie exercisers that value the convenience and privacy of this growing phenomenon. What a new twist on an old way to exercise.  When my daughter was young, I wasn’t able to get to a gym to work out so I would pop in a Jane Fonda video every morning and work out in my living room.  I found it made all the difference to have the encouragement, if done right you feel like you are right in a class with them. 

          I am most grateful this month for the launch of our wonderful new website!  If you haven’t seen it in a while, please check it out –  All of the articles, news briefs and calendar listings are easily visible on the home screen for easy access.  We will be adding a new searchable business directory in the next few months along with display advertising and community sponsorship opportunities. I know many of us love our print magazine, more and more people seem to be loving things online so we are blazing forward!

Here’s to hoping we all find something to be grateful for during this holiday season!

                                                                        Peace,                                                           Maureen