Another holiday season has come and gone. It’s always a little sad for me to take down all the sparkly lights, smiling Santas, words of “Joy” and “Merry,” and blessed nativity sets and return to “normal life.” Although Christmastime gets very, very busy, it seems there’s just an extra smile and hug to go around, a bit of excitement and anticipation in the air, and an extra-giving spirit all around, especially here in Rappahannock County.
It’s that giving spirit that I want to address, if I may. This is our fourth year having a Senior Angel Tree project here in Rappahannock. We were able to bless 122 seniors this year with beautifully wrapped, lovingly shopped-for gifts to let them each know how very special they are to our community. To Union First Market Bank, especially Mike Leake, Kelly Settle and all of the wonderful ladies that did so much to ensure the success of this project, we send a truly heartfelt thank you! (And we hope the glitter eventually comes up out of the carpet!)
To Amo Merritt, your lovely angel creations and many hours of organizational help were a blessing beyond words! And to the unbelievably generous Rappahannock community, thank you for adopting these precious “senior angels,” giving so much of your time and money to shop, wrap and care for each of these dear people. Gift bags/boxes went all over the county the week before Christmas, blessing folks through the Food Pantry, at Jackson House Assisted Living, at the Rappahannock Senior Center, through Social Services and several that were call-ins. The bank organized all of the gifts for us, allowing them to be stored in a back room until we were ready to deliver them.
So many people were so deeply touched. Here are a few of the things they had to say:
“Thank you for making Christmas at the Jackson House such a happy, festive day for all of the residents, including my 99-year-old mother, Helen Lee. The joyous singing and all the beautiful gifts for everyone were very much appreciated – their smiles lit up the room and expressed the joy of Christmas.”
“To all the beautiful and kind people . . . so giving and caring. Thank you so much for the beautiful gifts from the tree, and for caring about others.”
“That heartfelt expression of love has exposed a population bent on uplifting their fellow citizens . . . by opening their hearts and wallets.”
“Thank you. Your gifts of love are so greatly appreciated. May God bless each and every one of you.”
On behalf of all the Rappahannock seniors, thanks to everyone for all of your love!