Holiday Shopping: Will You Spend Less?

This could very well be the year when the Grinch steals Christmas, at least in terms of the gift-giving intentions of some adults. According to a new poll from the personal finance website GoBankingRates.com, 40 percent of some 1,500 survey respondents say they won’t be buying any holiday gifts this year. Blame the economy and the shaky finances of many Americans. The holidays only add to their stress and here’s why: 63 percent of those polled admit they haven’t set …

Grieving Through the Holidays

  Christmas is upon us and I am both relieved and apprehensive. The holidays this year are especially difficult for my family because they are the culmination of our first year of grief. My niece, Shaelee, lost her life to suicide on Jan. 4 at the age of 19.  She suffered from bipolar disorder for much of her life. It has been a rough year – to say we miss her terribly is such an understatement.We also have the challenge of ongoing grief and loss as my …

28 Ways to Heal From Tragedy

Many of us are experiencing grief and sorrow after the shock of the deaths in Newtown, Conn., on Friday. The tragic shootings have brought many issues to the forefront: gun control, school safety, mental illness and the daily tragedy of thousands of children around the world who die every day from violence, child abuse, neglect and hunger. How can we lift ourselves up from the fear, sadness and negativity? What can we, as individuals, do to make a difference? At …

How to Survive Busy Airports During the Christmas Season

Tis the season for chaos, conniption fits, and cancellations in our nation’s airports. To help you arrive at your destination with your sanity intact, here are a few holiday travel tips to follow: Arrive at the airport earlier than normal.  Seriously. A great deal of the stress found at our nation’s airports during very busy times is caused by late travelers.  The airports are certain to be busy, and arriving an hour earlier than normal is certain to alleviate the potential of …

Use ‘Slice’ to Keep Track of Online Shopping

I love discount online shopping.  In fact, some days I worry I’m addicted to it. I’m a member of the popular deep discount  “members only” clothing and home goods websites Gilt Groupe, Rue La La, Haute Look and One Kings Lane.  I say “members only” with a smile, because anyone who signs up becomes a member. Every day, and twice a day during the holiday shopping season, these sites send me emails highlighting items that are discounted 50 percent or more. …

I’ll Be at the Hospital for Christmas

The brilliant red Poinsettia is on the table, Christmas card beside it. Visitors come and go bringing hugs and Christmas cheer. There is turkey, stuffing and pumpkin pie in the dining room. In the background, I hear the sound of vintage 1949 Bing Crosby filling the air with “I’ll Be Home for Christmas,” and with all my heart I wish we were. But we’re not – we’re at the hospital for Christmas. The table decorated with Poinsettia and Christmas cards …