Every week we have fun sharing the items, places, or even people we’re crushing on, but this week’s roundup is the one that means the most to everyone here in Pleasantville. It’s fine to crush on a tube of lipstick because we know we also want the same freedom and choice to crush on whatever the hell they want for other people. We don’t take the privilege of living where we do lightly, and that’s why it was easy for the writers to come up with experiences and donations they would all love to give this holiday.
Candace Derickx – What do you give the person who has everything? Nothing. Not a single thing. You take their gift and give it to someone else. This year, in particular, with so many refugees in need, I’m acutely aware of the fact that I have everything. I have shelter, food, water, security, friendship and love. My Christmas morning will be spent by a beautiful tree surrounded by those I love. The only way to make that feeling better is to share with others (Do you hear that, Donald Trump?). This year, I’ll be making an extra donation to World Vision, a charity we’ve supported for 11 years now BUT there are so many other good ones—PLAN Canada, UNICEF and Save The Children to name a few. So, I guess I’m saying, crush a little less, leave your coveting behind for a bit and make it all about the giving this Christmas.
Maija Craig – My kids love experiences so this year we’re putting a family road trip under the tree for sometime in the spring or summer. The kids will receive a map with the route already drawn on it and where we’ll be staying along the way. We give them gift certificates for attractions, museums, and other experiences they might like to do en route too. They LOVE this; it gets them excited about our upcoming adventures and it’s less stuff around the house and under the tree.
And something near and dear to my family is preserving our natural heritage, so we foster a forest. That really is a thing! You can foster a forest through the Algoma Highlands Conservancy and even choose the acre or acres you want to foster.
Kelly Williams – It’s all about the goats for my family, and not just because they’re cute. Every year we give the gift of a goat through Plan Canada. A goat has an impact on the health and income of a family in need. The milk provides nourishment and future babies can be sold for profit. It’s a gift that keeps on giving.
My second favourite thing to do at Christmas is to give someone I love an experience that means something to them. One year I gave my sister-in-law cake decorating classes. So much more memorable than an ugly sweater.
Katja Wulfers – Last year I took a press trip to the Dominican Republic for a clean water campaign; it changed the way I think about water. Like Candace, we are very lucky to have everything we have, when so many people need the basics. You can’t get more basic than clean water. It’s the foundation for health and good hygiene, which can alleviate many other diseases besides the ones caused by ingesting contaminated water. This year the four of us are supporting Clean Water Projects through Save The Children Canada. My kids are past the toy stages and they love experiences; I figure the experience of helping other families is as good as it gets.