20 Gifts For 2010

Happy New YearCelebrating the holidays in a tough economy is enough to unleash the inner Scrooge in all of us.  It’s disheartening for many of us to not be able to give to our loved ones in the abundance we’re accustomed to.

Happily though, even the darkest cloud has a silver lining.  This year’s harsh economic climate, though by all accounts improving steadily as we hurl headlong into 2010, affords each of us the priceless opportunity to reconnect with the true meaning of the holidays and the spirit of giving.

Just before Christmas, we came across an emotional gift guide authored by Jack Levine—founder of the 4Generations Institute in Tallahassee and one of Florida’s best-known child advocates who was named Floridian of the Year in 1990.  It lists 20 intangible gifts to give to those who deserve special recognition for simply being who they are, doing what they do, and for the important role they play in our lives and communities.

No money, fancy paper or colorful ribbons are required to give the very gifts that ultimately touch their recipients’ hearts the most.  All you need are equal measures of understanding, compassion, love and commitment.  Better still, these are gifts—such as volunteering regularly at your favorite charity— that can be replenished all year long, thus extending the spirit of the holidays into every day of the New Year.

So with a brand new decade just a few days away, here is Levine’s 20-item emotional gift guide to help get it started in the best possible way:

  • To yourself….respect, confidence and faith.
  • To a friend….a heartfelt and caring spirit.

  • To a family member….dedication, communication and understanding.
  • To our natural world….protection and preservation.
  • To a good cause….generosity and ardent advocacy.
  • To a traveler….an open door of hospitality.
  • To our military and first responders….honor and appreciation.
  • To a customer or client….excellent service.
  • To the ill and hurting….concern and healing comfort.
  • To the hungry and homeless….compassion and emergency services.
  • To the abused, neglected and abandoned….hope and security.
  • To someone with a special challenge….recognition and acceptance.
  • To the addicted and troubled….a positive path to recovery.
  • To an infant and toddler….attachment, attention and safety.
  • To a child and teen….patience, guidance and a good example.
  • To a parent in need….a helping hand.
  • To an elder….reverence, gratitude and dignified care.
  • To everyone you see, friends and strangers alike….smiles and positive energy.
  • To people of every age….unconditional love.
  • To all the peoples of the world….justice and peace.

From each of us at Michael Saunders & Company we wish each of you a safe, happy, healthy and prosperous New Year.

Editors note:  Beginning next Sunday, January 3rd, our Sunday advertising section will appear within the pages of the Herald-Tribune’s Sunday real estate section.

As always, the ad will contain our weekly feature article, new listings, Sunday’s open houses, our Best Opportunities section; and property listings within all price ranges and geographic sectors of the market.

Written by Tom Heatherman – Michael Saunders & Company

* Follow Tom on Twitter: twitter.com/SarasotaRE

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