Enough with stuff?  Give the gift your loved-ones really want. 

Enough with stuff?  Give the gift your loved-ones really want. 

I don’t imagine most people get Christmas gift ideas from country music songs, but that’s exactly what happened.  Last December, as I worked through a stack of legal files, Christmas tunes playing on my iPhone, I pondered what to get for my husband, Jason.  Electronics?  No, he has plenty of gadgets.  Clothes?  Boring.  Hmmm.  Kenny Chesney’s now singing “All I want for Christmas is a real good tan.”  You and me both, Kenny. “Take me to the islands, put my feet in the sand . . .” That’s it! Fast forward to early November, 2014.  I’m still riding a trick-or-treating sugar high, but in retail America it’s already Christmas.  Tinsel and lights deck the aisles, reindeer fly and bells tinkle on television ads.  Thanksgiving?  Don’t waste time giving thanks for what you already have. It’s not enough.  Leave your family lingering over their pumpkin pie.  Go now!  Buy more! Don’t get me wrong.  I love Christmas.  But has our genuine desire to give gifts that show our loved-ones how much we care warped into a frenzied quest for the latest version of plastic-ensconced silicone chips? This holiday season, consider a gift that says “I want to spend time with you.”  Ask them to introduce you to something they love and show you why it inspires them.   Instead of filling up your cart with stuff, give the gift of a shared experience.  Why not book a January weekend at a cozy mountain resort for you and your spouse?  Does your brother love basketball, but you don’t know a full court press from a field goal?  Buy tickets to a college...
Does the World Need your Travel Blog?

Does the World Need your Travel Blog?

I’m a brand new blogger. About a month ago I dove head first into the rocking, splashing, crowded pool party of travel blogging. As I doggie paddle to get my nose above water I can’t help but ask myself, is there room for one more? I see the glamorous ladies writing about luxury cruises and the world’s best spas, the world trekkers posting from rural Chinese villages and hiking trails in Peru, and the guys in the euro trunks reporting in from the shores of Croatia. Can a 40-year-old attorney and mom join the party? Swim with me to the deep end for a moment and consider wondrous, amazing humanity. No two the same, each of us with individual gifts, experiences, and a unique perspective on the world.  Hiking granola crunchers, open ocean swimmers, reclusive poets, exhausted ER nurses, patient teachers, persistent entrepreneurs. We group and label, because it’s almost too much to grasp that of the billions alive today, and all those who came before, no two are interchangeable. And what’s the purpose of our individuality? I fundamentally believe we each have a responsibility to take what makes us special and share it with the others, to exercise our voice, contribute our “me-ness” to the whole. To dedicate what makes us unique to the service of others. What’s the point of each of us being one-of-a-kind creations if we don’t share and collaborate with others to make life better for us all? When we take action in line with our purpose we’re allowed the privilege of helping people and receive joy in return. But what makes me “me”? I certainly don’t claim to have it all...