Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Bring Happiness To Somebody's Child This Christmas

I have surpassed many happy years of Christmas as a child so I know what Christmas means to children. I had celebrated Christmas with my school children for 40 years and learned wisdom from them as far as  celebrating Christ's birthday is concerned..  In retirement,  I still want to have children surround me in the celebration of Christmas. As long as I live, I'll never stop giving Christmas its renewed meaning each year by sharing the joy of celebrating the birth of Baby Jesus with children especially from the poor. I'm with this stubborn opinion that it's because of the children that Christmas celebration can be given more meaning if it brings laughter to every child, rich or poor, relative or stranger. In like manner, I hope to bring happiness to somebody's child, the poor child in the manger. 

A Family Tradition

Early in my childhood, Father and Mother had instilled in my consciousness that Christmas is an opportunity of sharing our blessings not only within the family but also beyond it. I'll never forget those Christmas Eve when Father would distribute food to every household nearby. Before our family could dine together, Tatay would be lost in the dark and when he returned, home I could see the glorious glow of joy in his face. If you think that the sharing stopped there, you're wrong! 

The following day, December 25, relatives from distant places came home with their young and shared with us whatever we had on our table. When they left, I could hear that they were also given little cash or took home some of our used clothing or anything that we no longer used but were still serviceable to them. The closet cleared, we, girls, would be thankful that the clutter was disposed off. It was not easy to clean house with those stocks lying useless in it.

Of the 9 siblings, I'm the only one left in our birthplace to continue our family tradition. I believe in my heart, that my late parents are now happy and at peace with the Lord knowing that their legacy is still alive and growing in meaning. Having retired from active government service doesn't deter me from perpetuating the legacy. My 2 daughters inherit this family tradition and are ecstatic about  our annual Christmas celebration with the kids in the neighborhood.

A Children's Christmas Garden Party

On top of the usual giving away of packages of rice and grocery items, used clothing, cash gifts to the deserving, and sharing of food, my daughters will again throw a Children's Christmas Party for the neighborhood kids. It will be held at the front lawn of our newly renovated ancestral house on December 25 in honor of our late parents. We have been doing this for four years now, but last year we missed it due to my hospitalization  when also a few days after, my eldest, was also hospitalized.

The party will be an extended thanksgiving gesture to make others happy this Christmas. The plan was hatched by my 2 daughters and I during our thanksgiving vacation. Upon returning home, I contacted a few reliable relatives to help me draft the activities. My 2 daughters are away from home and would be back in time for the Christmas. I can't do the work alone and many are happy to help. 

Involve the Parents

With help from my organized work force, steering committees are being formed and plans are already taking forms, too. Arrangements had been laid out and assignments are distributed as follows:

- Program Coordinator - in charge of the general program for the party, to oversee the children's song and dance practices,  drawing of lots for the exchanging of gifts(personal expense by participants)

- Venue Arranger -  in charge of accommodation (tables, chairs)

- Light and Sound Installer - in charge of the videoke challenge 

- Venue Decorator - to prepare the garden lawn with Christmas setting

- Snacks and Refreshments Coordinator - in charge of the food preparation

- Catering Arranger - in charge of the  a self-help feeding arrangement

- Giveaway Packaging Coordinator - in charge of packing the rice and grocery item giveaways and to identify the most deserving recipients

- Games Coordinator - to take charge of the games for the contests

- Prizes and Cash Gifts - from my daughters Pot and Kit

The party won't be a big one, but I'm sure the kids will be grateful for this added  experience about Christmas and its true meaning of sharing within this cluster of the BEC, the Basic Ecclessial Community, of which most of the parents are members. It will not  discriminate against other religious sect because every child is a welcome participant.

Christmas In The Neighborhood

I have resided in this poor neighborhood since birth where families don't celebrate Christmas as pompous as the way they do during New Year. They say, they'd rather celebrate the 2 occasions together for economic reasons. So, it's on New Year that they give their best  by preparing especial food on their tables. They believe that this way, the incoming year will bring them more blessings.

As Roman Catholics, my parents believed that Christmas is held to honor the birth of Jesus Christ. If they could spend a little more for their children's birthdays, how much more during the birthday of the Child Jesus? And so, in the neighborhood, we are identified differently on the matter of preparing food on Christmas Eve. What is sharing a little of what we have to those who don't have,  do to us? It's the joy of giving that makes us happy, because  we know that at the same time we bring happiness  to somebody's poor child, the Child in the Manger.

The Child In Us Comes Out in December, Too!

The grapevine over the planned Children's Christmas Party had reached the ears of my friends in church, particularly the members of our choir. And they aren't one to be left out. So I suggested that we can have our group Christmas Party, too, in our backyard where the nipa hut (bahay-kubo) can accommodate our number. We will have our exchange of gifts and video singing challenge there with gusto!

I realize that Christmas is always the same in the eyes of a child and an adult. As adults, we want to relive  those days when Christmas was free from worries. Like the little children that we once were, we crave to bring laughter to each one of us. This year and forevermore, I'll always remember that on every Christmas, it's easy to bring happiness to somebody's child, especially to the most Precious Child, the poor Child Jesus in the manger. Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to All !


  1. Hi sister, Nice blog post which may bring smile on the face Lord himself. Your blog post reflects the rich cultural background in which your parents brought you up. I enjoyed reading it and remembered my childhood with my parents and other family members. May the coming Christmas bring peace and prosperity to the whole world which is created by Lord Almighty.

  2. Lita,
    What a wonderful tradition to continue. I am blown away by your love and generosity in the joy of others, especially children. I wish I could see their eyes light up and the smiles across their little faces. Enjoy every moment, your heart is shining the love of Christ to all.

  3. I am blessed of your post because our family is sharing also our blessings to our less privileged neighbor. This started when my husband was still alive that when we transfered in this new place he witnessed how our neighbors lived nearby so that every Christmas season we gave foods stuff and sharing the Word of God. Now that he is gone we continued with this endeavor with my children. It is a good feelings that you can share your blessings tho in a simple ways.

  4. Hi,
    Merry Christmas to you! Celebrations are only really fun with the kids around. I hope you're having a wonderful Christmas today!

  5. pdkamath,
    We've been too busy preparing for the traditional family party with the neighborhood children (and adults, too). So sorry for this delayed reply, my friend.

    After the Children's Christmas Party, my 2 daughters and I were literally down but gloriously happy! Oh, you must have seen some of those cute little girls danced in little girl Santa's costume! We made them happy and the Baby in the Manger, surely smiled with them, too. Thank you for this wonderful comment. Happy Holidays, Sir!

  6. Angelia,
    I'll definitely select one photo of the party to show in my hubpages post which will be seen on my sidebar, soon, Sweetie! I'll update you when it's done.

    I know you enjoyed your first Christmas with Jason as his wife. You inspired me in your similar mission with the poor children during Christmas. I know you did it again for the love of the Child Jesus. Happy Holidays!

  7. Passionate Blogger,
    I thought it so, too- fun at Christmastime because of the kids. But as I observed their parents during the Children's Party, they had a riotous fun with their game they called the "Family Affair". I'll try to post the video of this in my upcoming hub. Yes, that was a successful fun-filled Christmas we had with them. Thank you and Happy Holidays to you and your family.



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