We’re still catching up on recounting our Christmas holiday festivities, even as we get ready to plunge into the New Year. Last week we also held our annual staff Christmas party at Perry Wellness Center. Stuart and Pam Perry convened the event at which 24 other staff members were present. It was a time to celebrate not only the season, but the positive actions of center staff.
“It is important to gift our staff and workers,” Stuart explained. “We are often too busy to stop and thank these caring individuals. At Christmas, we must realize the ‘Reason for the Season’ and also take time to share gifts, food, and good wishes.
The format for the event was a White Elephant gift exchange. For those of you who don’t know how this process works, allow us to explain: Each staff member brought a gift that would “fit in a sock.” The gift cost was limited to $10. (Many sock gifts exceeded this price limit and were a bit of a challenge in the gift selection network!) Guests each drew a random number between 1 – 30, beginning with Jeff Williams, who drew #1. As the numbers increased, the last person who had selected a number could either choose a gift from the laden table or ‘take’ a gift that had been previously selected and opened. (Gives new meaning to the term “re-gifting,” doesn’t it?!)
As the selection numbers mounted, so did the anticipation of staff. Jeff had made an early gift selection that became a popular selection for several subsequent participants. “I guess everyone liked my gifts and wanted to exchange and have me select another gift,” Jeff remarked. “It was fun, as I opened several gifts.”
After the novel gift exchange was completed, three tables full of holiday treats were shared with the group. Stuart noted with a smile, “I did not go hungry, and I saw some normally polite staff members fill their plates several times!”
As the evening wound down, Pam Perry rose to share the words of a Christmas cards she had received from her parents earlier in the week. We shared the poem, “Just a Little Donkey,” in a post last week, but it bears repeating:
“Just a little donkey, but on my back I bore
The one and only Savior the world was waiting for.
Just a little donkey, but I was strong and proud –
I gladly carried Mary through the chaos of the crowd.
I brought her to a stable where she made a tiny bed …
A place for Baby Jesus to lay His little head.
I pray the world remembers that special Christmas night
When just a little donkey carried Heaven’s Precious Light.”
Just as the poem had been shared with peers to remind them that no good effort is unimportant, its words also served as a reminder to staff members of the importance of their own work in making lives stronger in their community.
We look forward to another wonderful year at Perry Wellness Center and appreciate the support of all our readers during 2015. Have a safe and Happy New Year!!