Sharing joy at Christmas

By: Maria Collins

Christmas joy is not far away. Christmas is a time to spend with family, extended family and friends and gives us an opportunity to appreciate each other. Christmas does not need to be a huge expense, even though this is not what retailers would have you believe.

Homemade vouchers to clean the car, cook a nice dinner, or babysit for a family member or  friend, makes the person receiving them feel as though you have thought about them and makes them feel special. Garden centres have trees on special at this time of year and they make a wonderful gift as they are forever.

For children, you can make up baskets or boxes of wonderful surprise gifts. These gifts can be purchased from a $2 shop, such as balloons, make-up, colouring pencils and other little gifts. If your child is into creating artistic pieces, you can fill this gift box up with special shells or coloured glass as well.

There are also free activities available for the Christmas holidays. For example, packing a picnic and going to one of the amazing beaches that surround our coastline or going to one of our local parks. Libraries have fun activities during the holidays as well. You can find out information from the library closest to you or on the Auckland Council website.

Also on the Council website, you can find a selection of free movies and music in the parks – all aimed at families. There are many wharves in our communities; children love fishing and exploring the rocks.

Let Christmas be a joyous occasion and think outside the square. You will be pleasantly surprised about what you come up with for gifts and the reactions they provoke from family, children and friends because of your originality and sense of fun.

The team at Homebuilders Family Services would like to say a huge thank you to the community who donate money, gifts and food during the year and at Christmas. We would like to acknowledge and thank the continuing support from Natures Nest for the weekly donation of fresh play dough for the play therapy room and the HIPPY programme in Wellsford; Warkworth Quilters, who make the most amazing quilts to donate; the fantastic knitters who donate blankets, baby clothes and wonderful pieces of artistic knitting; Composite Joinery and the Community Trading Post for their generous donations; Bevan Woodward, FashioNZ, Warkworth Tai Chi, Leigh Eats and Ray White for yet again collecting gifts. These donations and gifts go to people in our community who otherwise would struggle to have anything, so thank you very much. Homebuilders Family Services will be closing on the December 24 at noon. We will reopen on January 14, 2019. We wish you all a safe and Merry Christmas.

Maria Collins, Homebuilders, Help Desk Advocate


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