First things first! I LOVE this song, can't get it out of my head lately:
Whoa! Is it really Thursday night? What an insane week. This is one of the craziest weeks at my job, which leads up to my favorite night (last night) of work, our Christmas party. (For those of you who are new followers--HOORAY!!-- I'm a caseworker and I work with foster care youth).
I struggle with a lot of backlash from friends, family members, etc as we do this entire party out of donations from the community. The thing is, most people see it as 'spoiling kids with things they wouldn't ordinarily be able to have if they returned home'. And yes, that's true--but there's more to that. I try not to get feisty as I explain to them that kids in care wake up in a home that isn't theirs but we try to make it comfortable. And they spend their days with a family that also isn't their own, but we try to make them comfortable. And each one of these damaged little souls comes in with a story, with a history, and rarely is any of it simple or pretty. And they, especially the older kiddos, take a lot of value in 'material things', which doesn't make them as materialistic as you may think. Think of it this way: for some of them, the only time their parents showed them 'love' is when they bought them things, if they provided for them at all. For some kids, material things hold a lot of value over real human relationships, because people regularly have hurt them or let them down. For me, it's a struggle to find a family who can make room for one more at their dinner table and understand concepts like this one.
Anyway, as I was saying before, it's my favorite day because it involves a big pasta dinner and bags full of gifts. It involves twinkling eyes of children and "jolly laughs from Santa". It is one of the few moments you see children really carefree, not worrying about meals or rules or safety. And this year, was my favorite of all. Can't say much more than that--except to hug your families and donate where you can to those who aren't as fortunate.
I'm looking for some books to read. Seriously, reading keeps me sane when I can't quite write about the things brewing in this dangerous brain of mine. Have any of you read the Girl With The Dragon Tattoo trilogy? I saw the movie (backward I know) and although it was a slow build I think it'd be a good read. Feedback would be awesome. Also, if you have some good book recommendations I'd love those also.