I wonder how many Christmas wish lists I have scribbled out over the years? Have I ever skipped a year? As a kid, I remember paging through an immensely thick Sears catalog looking at the mini-bikes and go-carts I was always putting on my wish list. I never did get them. I didn’t get the BB gun or jack knife on my list either but don’t feel sorry for me. Santa has always been plenty good to me!

Christmas was never as much fun as when my children were young, and they made their Christmas lists. We would go to see Santa at Tower City and their lists, written in crayon on the back of wrapping paper, would be left with the big guy in red only to be found, once again, with their stockings on Christmas morning. Christmas magic!!!

We all still write our lists and Santa still leaves notes behind to be found on Christmas morning but, until there are grandkids in the picture, the Christmas magic is a bit more subdued than it once was. To be honest, I have a tough time filling my list. I feel privileged in that I lack for very little. That certainly doesn’t mean there isn’t a lot that I wish for - it’s just that the things I wish for can’t be delivered under a tree.

As a gardener, I wish for a mild winter, an early spring and a long summer of sunny days with light evening showers to water my gardens.

As a father, I wish for the continued health of my family and friends while praying for the healing of those who are sick and recuperation of those who are injured. 

As a driver, I wish that everyone would use their turn signals and that the left lane on the freeway was only used only for passing. (I had a better chance of getting a mini-bike!)

As a business person, I wish for a continual growth of confidence in our economy and in the leadership of our country.

As a human being, I wish that people could find a way to treat one another with the respect and dignity they deserve, not because they are our friends or neighbors, not because they look like us or think like us, not because they pray to the same God or have had the same life experiences, but because, like us, they are humans and that is what they deserve. Unfortunately, I doubt this wish will ever come to pass. Perhaps it is not in our nature? It frustrates me that I don’t feel I can make a significant difference on a global scale by myself. What is one left to do? I am left to focus on what I can do.

I am going to do what I can to make the world a better place to live, work and play and do all I can to inspire others to do the same. I will join with the like-minded members of our community and together we will make a difference both locally and globally. We will spread dignity, encourage respect and inspire...one person at a time. 

My final wish would be that you join me in my pursuit and that together we achieve what none of us alone could possibly realize. 

Wishing you a Merry Christmas, Happy Holidays and all the best for you and yours in the New Year!

Now go outside and play in the dirt!