Tag Archives: traditions

Black Friday Tags

Black Friday Shopping ~ Yay or Nay ??

Black Friday isn’t what it used to be. When my kids were young … you know, back in the day, I used to shop on Black Friday. That was when the coolest toys were on sale, and if you didn’t want disappointed kiddos on Christmas morning, you braved the crack of dawn time, the weather & the crowds. Back in the 90’s, before everyone was online, stores ordered a certain number of the item and when they were sold out, that was pretty much it … waiting to see if another shipment came in before Christmas was a big gamble. So, I went … Continue reading

Happy Labor Day Weekend

Labor Day Weekend ~ Summer’s Last Hurrah

Time sure does fly … it flies really fast. It is already the last week of August. Many schools have started classes, but for the students and the parents, it still feels like summer. Somehow, school just doesn’t seem real until after Labor Day Weekend.

Labor Day Weekend is like the unofficial end of summer. Even though summer doesn’t technically end until September 23rd, when the Autumnal Equinox ushers in Fall. For all intents and purposes, Labor Day is the last big “Hurrah” of summer. The carefree days of summer are being replaced with schedules and routines.

Many people celebrate this holiday with outdoor picnics and parades. The American flag is proudly flown and/or displayed.

The actual reason we celebrate Labor Day is because in 1894, a national holiday was created to honor American workers. It gave workers an official day off (in most industries). During the late 1800’s, most workers were made to work 12-hour shifts; 7 days a week in deplorable conditions just to make a meager living. Numerous demonstrations were held to try to improve working conditions and how employees were treated. Labor unions staged strikes – many riots broke out all over the country. It was a dark time in our country’s history.

In modern day America, generally speaking, most employees enjoy healthy working conditions, an 8-hour shift, a 5-day work week, a guaranteed minimum wage and some type of benefits. The American workplace is a far cry from perfect, but it has definitely come a long way.

At Tracy Helps You, we usually work on the “workingman’s holiday”. I’m taking care of an adorable German Sheppard while her owners are traveling over Labor Day Weekend 🙂

Jesus is the reason Ornaments

Christmas Busyness VS. the Reason for the Season

Christmas is upon us ! For the life of me, I don’t understand how time flies by so quickly. We all lead very busy lives. Sometimes I wonder why we over commit ourselves, after all, many times, we decide what goes on our schedule. I think in part, as a woman (and a perfectionist), I’m expected to do it all … a.k.a. SuperMom. The Holidays seem to add even more commitments to our already busy days.

I love lists, as you probably know, they help me stay organized. During the year, I have many various kinds of lists … personal, household and business to-do lists. Some lists are seasonal, gardening – camping – raking – and, of course, Christmas. My Holiday to-do list is always long.

I always want the Currier and Ives feeling for my home. You know, where the loving family is gathered around a beautifully decorated tree sitting in front of a warm, cozy fire in the hearth. The well-behaved children are eating warm from the oven cookies while listening to Dad read the Christmas story, patiently waiting to open the perfectly wrapped gifts under the tree. In my dreams …

It’s totally unrealistic, I know, but in my perfectionist mind, I disappoint myself by not getting it all done. Will the world end if I don’t bake 10 varieties of cookies or the gifts don’t have matching bows?? Of course not … I know I make my own busyness (I write the lists), but I truly want to be able to slow down and enjoy the Holidays. I need to learn how to simplify my preparations. I want to concentrate on what this holiday is all about … not all the commercialism and Santa Claus.

Jesus is the reason for the season. Christmas is about the gift of love, not things. It’s about spending time with family … and if you know of someone who doesn’t have family near, adopt them into your family 🙂 It’s about celebrating traditions and reminiscing with loved ones and friends. It’s about making new memories. It’s about being grateful for all you’ve been blessed with. It’s a time for blessing others. It’s about enjoying the simple things …                                

I want to wish you and yours a very MERRY CHRISTMAS and HAPPY NEW YEAR !!!


Thanksgiving Turkey

Tracy Helps You’s Thankful Thoughts for Today ~ 11-28-13

November 28 ~ Today I am thankful for traditions. It’s Thanksgiving Day … a day set aside for expressing gratitude for your many blessings. It’s also a day full of traditions with family and friends.

Like most American families, we indulge in a huge feast of turkey “with all the fixins”. Turkey, stuffing, and casseroles, oh my … and let’s not forget pumpkin pie with whipped cream 🙂

This big meal is the backdrop for families as they gather around a heavy-laden table and share their heartfelt gratitude. It is a day filled with love for family and friends.

Many families have certain traditions that they continue from year to year … grandpa always carves the turkey, watching football, the after dinner nap, or go to see a movie. Some families exchange names for Christmas gift grab bags or scour the ad papers for Black Friday specials 🙂

There are many different traditions, but what’s important is that traditions bind families together and are passed down from generation to generation. Traditions make memories … HAPPY THANKSGIVING !!!

♥ Today I am thankful for traditions 

photo by: Ruocaled
Visit to the first house I lived in

Tracy Helps You’s Thankful Thoughts for Today ~ 11-2-13

November 2 ~ Today I am thankful for old family memories. Yesterday, I was blessed to be able to spend the day with my aunt and one of my cousins wandering around several different Chicago neighborhoods. My aunt lives in California and comes back for occasional visits. Over the years, it has become our tradition to drive by some of the old houses / apartments that she lived in growing up. We would park out front of the building and she would tell us old family stories. Some of the stories I’ve heard before but are fun to hear over and over … but it seems that I learn something new with each of her visits.

Yesterday, we decided to park and walk around for close up looks. We’re lucky no one called the cops on us, cause we probably looked like stalkers and we may or may not have trespassed 🙂   At one house, the current resident saw us pointing at her house and taking pictures. She asked if she could help us (probably a polite way of saying what are you weirdoes doing??). We explained that we grew up there and she was so kind as to actually invite us in and show us around. I didn’t even recognize it, they had completely gutted and remodeled the place. It was gorgeous and so much nicer than when we lived there. Back in the day, we also owned the empty lot right next door and used it as an extension of our backyard. Now there is a house built on that lot. We also got to take pictures of my cousin re-enacting her job when we planted the tree out in front of the house as kids.

Like many families, we have some pretty wacky stories, but I think that’s what makes oral history so fun 🙂  I think it’s a good way to relive childhood memories and keep them alive. I find it particularly interesting to hear my aunt’s and cousin’s recollection of the same memory. How circumstances are perceived at different stages of life … my aunt being older and my cousin being younger than me.

I came home exhausted, but full of new memories of old memories … thanks to the adventures of the three T’s 🙂 

♥ Today I will focus on being thankful for having old family memories ♥