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Merry Christmas and keep spreading that holiday spirit

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Many of us experience a lighter, more relaxed mood throughout December.

As soon as Thanksgiving dinner is over, many families and business owners decorate their places with festive greenery, Christmas trees and holiday icons such as candy canes and elves.

This month, we’re more easy-going at home and at work, and smile more while greeting strangers with genuine holiday wishes on the street or at stores.

And every Placer County neighborhood turns into a sparkling, happy village of blinking reindeers, Santas, inflatable winter scenes and gingerbread men. The displays in some neighborhoods are so elaborate that spectators in cars wait patiently in line for blocks to delight in the spectacular Christmas lights.

It’s invigorating to have this annual break from our usual fast-paced daily schedules. Too often, we neglect sharing time with family and friends because of hectic school demands, work emergencies and stressful home repairs. While intending to do a little extra work before spending time with loved ones, the work invariably ends up taking more hours than anticipated.  

Thankfully, the winter holidays remind us to make it a priority to spend much-needed time with our family and friends. With Christmas parties, holiday dinners and community events on the calendar, it’s easier to break away from our daily routines to reconnect with our loved ones.

As they count down to Christmas, most residents are on the same page, sending good wishes to everyone in the community.

Let’s maintain the cheerful holiday spirit by spreading goodwill to residents who might not have a good Christmas because of unfortunate circumstances that can unexpectedly strike at any time. For starters, think of the Camp Fire victims, a parent who lost their job or a family struggling to meet rapidly-rising medical expenses of a sick child. As they try to get their lives back in order, Christmas-related purchases are not high on their affordable list this year.

Giving is what the holiday season is all about and scores of community organizations still need donations of money, goods and volunteer hours to help others have a merry Christmas. Last week, we mentioned that KidsFirst has a drive for new hats, gloves and socks to help those in need stay warm. Collection boxes are at The Lincoln News Messenger office, 553 F St., Lincoln and at KidsFirst, 124 Main St., Roseville.  

Area food banks, including The Salt Mine in Lincoln and the Placer Food Bank in the south Placer area, can use more healthy donations, such as canned meals, vegetables, fruit, beans, pasta, rice and cereal.

Our civic and service groups work year-round to help those in need and the groups are especially busy this time of year being good Samaritans. Groups helping others range from the Gathering Inn, Salvation Army to Rotary, Kiwanis, Soroptimist and Lions, and everything in between. The groups would appreciate any donations that we can make.

We hope this holiday season is a wonderful, peaceful and giving season for you. Merry Christmas from all of us at Gold Country Media.