Charity give back

December Letter from the Editor

Tuesday, December 09, 2014 HALFSTACK MAGAZINE

Happy holidays readers!

December has crept up on me. The next issue is set to go live in about a week and a half and I am excited to share this next issue. It is filled with great stories, wonderful brands that give back and some incredibly inspirational people. This month we are dedicating editorial direction towards giving. Whether it be organizations that are making change in their community or brands that give back, we are highlighting all things positive and that are all about giving back.

We also have some great gift guides coming up if you need some inspiration for gifts. I always think it is important, though, to stress that it's the thought that counts when gift giving. You can make something rather than buy or even find other ways to make an impact. I'm finding myself really trying to explain the true meaning behind the holiday season to my family this year - especially my younger daughters. I feel like during this time, we get so caught up in consumer type thinking that we can at times forget what truly matters. I heard so many people protesting Black Friday this year and it really made me think. What am I truly trying to share during the holiday season? What does it really mean to me?

To me, this season is all about family and about giving to those who need kindness the most. Growing up, my family didn't have much and in years past Christmas would bring to me a bout of anxiety. This year, I don't have that anxiety. It's not that I have enough money to splurge and spend all the money I want on my children, but my heart has come to a realization that I can share love with my kids and show the true meaning of Christmas. The idea of being selfless, the idea of helping others. We may not have all the money in the world to give, but we do have time to volunteer and can give other things that are gently used that others may need. This time of year isn't just about buying presents, it's about giving ourselves, our true hearts to others in ways we could have never imagined. Touching the spirit of someone else. There is this beautiful quote from Dr. Suess that just pulls at my heart each year and it goes a little something like this, “Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before! What if Christmas, he thought, doesn't come from a store. What if Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!”

This past year I have been giving my time to local organizations - one in particular: 360 Youth Services. We have a great story to share in this upcoming issue about their transitional housing program. Youth homelessness is a much more widespread problem than many people realize. It's organizations such as 360 that are taking a stand for those of us who are at our most vulnerable moments. They are empowering these young people take back control in their life. This holiday season, think about other ways you can help. If you are inspired by an organization, think about donating funds or time, rather than just buying another gift. Or find a brand that is making a difference and make your purchase based on that.

I wish you all a happy holidays this month dear readers, whatever your beliefs may be. I hope you find some joy in the beauty that surrounds you and find inspiration in the world you live in. Stay tuned, December 17th will be the release date of our winter issue and I hope you enjoy it as much as we enjoyed putting it together.

Take care!
Jen Lezan 

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