Thursday, December 20, 2012

Christmas Is Not about Presents; It Is about Gifts

Last night the Telford family went out on a wonderful sleigh ride at the Homestead outside of Heber City, Utah. This morning, I woke to a beautiful e-mail from Kim which captures the spirit of our outting.

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While many people give gifts to one another, and so do us Telfords, I think about three things during the holidays. I hope you too will consider my short list throughout the season and the year.

Number One, Jesus

It may sound tacky but Jesus and the gift God gave to mankind is the real reason for Christmas. It is the single most inspiring story of love and sacrifice in my religion.

You have probably heard the story no matter your faith or beliefs. Take a moment to consider how many people and God made this special birth happen, protected this child, and ultimately saw him suffer for ALL the sins of the world.

Number Two, Family

This one reason is why I decided to write on this sporadically published blog. They, and I mean all of them from Kim, AnnaLeesa, and Harriosn, my many brothers and sole sister, my step family and my in-laws, my nieces and my nephews, my parents, my aunts, my uncles, my grandparents, and those who are missed is the reason I look forward to the season.

When I am asked what I want for Christmas, I always think family. I want to see them, I want to call them, and I want them to know how much I love them.

Number Three, Giving Gifts

I don't really care for receiving gifts. I accepted a long time ago that it is rude not to accept a gift especially since I like to give gifts. 'Tis better to give than to receive.

Yes, I do like giving gifts to every single family member, but Kim's family picks names. So the compromise is, we give gifts to all the kids and parents and the grandparents and only to the siblings we pick for the year. It still works out to be a big list, but not big enough for me.

We give to charities which is our sign of love for those who need a little or a lot. The Utah Food Bank, Sub for Santa, Angel Tree, and Toys for Tots are all on our list around this time of year. And the best thing about having a son and a daughter is we always try to pick a girl and a boy around the same age every year from the Angel Tree. It seems easier to shop now that Harrison and AnnaLeesa help us pick the clothing, toys, and foods out just like they would if they bought it for themselves.

So this year and every year, remember Christmas is all about the gifts of Our Saviour, Our Family, and those things we can do for others.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Travel is always great with the right people

When I think of all the planes I have flown on, the most memorable trips are with family with notable exceptions to and across the Ice.

A journey in life is only as significant as the people who accompany us. It sounds like a relatively simple quote but it is even more significant to me as I travel regularly for business without my family.

One trip I recall was to visit my grandparents, Anne and Ralph, in San Diego. This was one of those times that my brother Ian and I flew unaccompanied.

He didn't know it but being his traveling companion was always fun. I felt a sense of responsibility for him, as a big brother should. I knew he would do anything to look out for me too. And, the best part was we were together on the journey with a handful of activities and flight attendants who kept an eye on us at first, saw we were good kids, left us alone, and made sure we got off the plane safely.

If nothing else, writing this makes me wonder when Ian and will ride together again.