Christmas Music For The Grieving

Christmas music took on a new meaning for me after Joe’s passing in March 2008. It was something to be avoided. It no longer brought back memories of singing carols in church or when youth group went Christmas caroling. Even recent memories of Christmas services became a blurred memory.

Christmas is a time to chipper and sing joyously at the top of your lungs. I was anything but chipper that year. Especially when it comes to the  “song-which-must-not-be-named.”

So this year I Googled Christmas music for the grieving and came upon Denny Burke’s wonderful article about Steven Curtis Chapman.   After reading the article, I went to my Amazon music account and listened to some of Steven’s Christmas albums in order screen which ones would be least likely to induce a meltdown.

Here are the three I spent listening to. They are from least likely to most likely to produce a meltdown of Wicked Witch of the West proportions. (Of course, it is entirely possible that any Christmas music will reduce a grieving person to a puddle of tears.)

Christmas Hymns (2015). As the title indicates, there is nothing romantic on this album. Now if you spouses favorite Christmas hymn is on this album, then you might shed a few tears.

The Music of Christmas (1995). There is nothing romantic that will induce a meltdown of Wicked Witch of the West proportions. However, Going Home For Christmas is about a mother’s move to heaven. Precious Promise is a beautiful, tender song about Mary and Jesus’ birth and could cause some tears just depending on your mood.

Joy (2012) Recommended only if you have been a widow for at least 5 years. But be forewarned there is a romantic song entitled Christmas Kiss, that might send you over the edge. The song is definitely not for the newly grieving spouse.

These are my opinions. Every person and every grief is different. Please review the list of songs before deciding whether or not to purchase as you need to make sure the songs will not cause you to have a meltdown.

I will keep looking for Christmas music by other artists that are appropriate for grieving people.

In the meantime, please avoid the “song-which-must-not-be-named” – Have Your Self A Merry Little Christmas. 

 

(Disclosure: All links are non-affiliate.)

 

 

christmas signatureBio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

 

52 Bible Verses for a Joy Filled Year – Week 48

Hopefully, you had a wonderful Thanksgiving and are now preparing for Advent. I was blessed to spend the day with Mom and we had a terrific turkey dinner at Denny’s Restaurant. It’s just the two of us so why bother cooking?

I do not have much to say about this weeks verse. As always, may God show us how this verse applies to our lives this week.

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You will show me the way of life,
    granting me the joy of your presence and
the pleasures of living with you forever.

Psalm 16:11

(NLT)

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May you experience the joy of His presence this advent as you prepare to celebrate Jesus’ birth.

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“Manger Set”

 

 

 

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Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

Thankfulness – Adelaide Anne Proctor

Happy Thanksgiving my dear readers! May you find a reason to give thanks even if you are grieving or working through another nasty life event.

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Here is a poem I found from A Sacrifice of Praise, Second Edition, An Anthology of Christian Poetry in English from Caedmon to the Mid-Twentieth Century; Edited by James H. Trott.

May you have a joy-filled Thanksgiving with family and friends.

Thankfulness

My God, I thank thee who hast made

The earth so bright;

So full of splendour and of joy,

Beauty and light;

So many glorious things are here,

Noble and right!

 

I thank thee, too, that thou hast made

Joy to abound;

So many gentle thoughts and deeds

Circling us round,

That on earth darkest spot of earth

Some love is found.

 

I thank thee more that all our joy

Is touched with pain;

That shadows fall on brightest hours;

That thorns remain;

So that earth’s bliss may be our guide,

And not our chain.

 

For though who knowest, Lord, how soo

Our weak heart clings,

Hast given us joys, tender and true,

Yet all with wings,

So that we see, gleaming on high,

Diviner things!

 

I thank thee, Lord, that though hast kept

The best in store;

We have enough, yet not too much

To long for more:

A yearning for a deeper peace,

Not known before.

 

I thank thee, Lord, that here our souls,

Though amply blest

Can never find, although they seek,

A perfect rest –

Nor ever shall, until they lean

On Jesus’ breast.

 

Adelaide Anne Proctor

(1825 – 1864)

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

 

52 Bible Verses for a Joy Filled Year – Week 47

How to keep your mind stayed on God? Most people think that praying or reciting Bible verses and Bible Journaling is the way of keeping your mind on God. While they are good ways to keep your mind on God, if you open your eyes and drink in the beautiful scenery around you – that will also help you keep your mind on God.

We often go through our day with eyes closed to His beauty and therefore miss His presence and His peace.

So during this week keep your eyes open for God’s beauty all around you and experience His perfect peace and then remember to give thanks for His perfect peace.

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Here are some peaceful photos I took at Alderfer-Oenslager Wildlife Sanctuary/Wolf Creek Environmental Center in Sharon Center, OH.

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Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

Michele’s Red-dee for Christmas Mall Walk

This is the week I completed my goal for the end of the 7-week Faithful Finish Lines fitness program.

Today’s weather was rainy, with some snow mixed in so an outdoor walk was impossible.

I struggled with this round because of my goal, another mall walk was so unless appealing. Then just before I left an idea came to me – red. So I wore my red earrings, lipstick and watch and decided to take pictures of red at the mall. Some of the pictures did not turn out well.

My focus for the walk was not speed, or distance but the number of steps. A couple weeks ago I did 2500 steps, so I had an idea of what route I wanted to go. In measuring steps, that meant I could go shopping in order to break up the monotony of doing laps.

So I walked the upper and lower levels, the main concourse and through Macy’s, Dillard’s, Bare Minerals, Sephora, and Penney’s.

Total steps 3,550, 2,485 meters, time 38:59 and 137 calories burned.

Below are some scenes from my walk.

An expensive gag gift – the Browns are on their way to 0-16 season.     🤣😂🤣

Rest break

Me at the North Pole. Video of polar bears playing in Santa’s house.

So it did not turn out as Red as I wanted but weather permitting, I will try it next Wednesday.

Holiday Resource

The holiday season kicks off next week. To help you get through the chaos I’ve published a new page 2017 Holiday Resources. 

It is filled with lots of goodies to help you deal with this time of year. There are links to websites, articles (such as  How Does Running Improve Health and Mood ),  and books. I intended for it to be longer, but I pulled a muscle in my back so sitting at the computer is not fun.

There will be updates throughout the season, most likely Tuesday – Thursdays so check back as you never know what you will find.

Praying you experience a lot of joy today and during the holiday season.

Santa Bacon

(Santa Bacon was a gift from my Mom. She found it at Big Lots 2 years ago.)

52 Bible Verses for a Joy Filled Year – Week 46

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For he shall give his angels charge over thee, to keep thee in all thy ways. 

Psalm 91:11

Angels come in all shapes, sizes, and colors. Remember that this week and be on the lookout for angels God places in your life….and don’t forget to be an angel to someone else this week. For we are all fighting some kind of battle.

Below are some of the angels God brought to me.

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Air “Yoda”

 

 

 

 

Bio: Michele Kearns is the founder and HUG© (Hope Unites Globally) Award-Winner of JoyReturns. She shares her widowhood adventures hoping to encourage widows to move through grief and rebuild their lives. A graduate of Kent State University with a Bachelor’s degree in communications, she’s used those skills while working as a call center team leader, facilitating a grief support group and helping small businesses with various writing and administrative assignments. Michele is a bookworm, lover of golden retrievers and an amateur photographer.

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