The energy of the mind is the essence of life. – Aristotle

Chestnuts Roasting on a Bonfire


Fire! Fire!

Fire! Fire! (Photo credit: vonguard)

Since it’s close to the holiday of giving, I feel that this blog will help you feel much worse about how your Christmas went.  Yes, you read correctly… WORSE.

I was very blessed this Christmas and received much more than I could ever want.  I’m sure some of you can say the same.  I try to be very thankful for anything I receive, no matter how great, small, or awful.  Many members of my generation would probably be disappointed in half of the things I received.

During Christmas, when the parentals ask for Christmas lists, my answer for several years is always, “I don’t need anything.”  And the truth is I don’t.  If I did, I would ask for it.  Growing up, I always wanted the newest and greatest; and to a certain extent, I was spoiled.  As I went on, Christmas after Christmas, it seemed as if what I got was never enough.  Aw, the culture of greed.

As some of you know, my junior year of college I moved to a small apartment on my own.  I didn’t have much, and had just finished purchasing some items for my kitchen so that I could cook ramen noodles and hamburger helper (you know, the college staples).  I quickly learned what all I did have.  About a month after moving in, I was headed home from work and on the phone with my mom.  Before I got off the phone, I told her there was a  fire somewhere down the street close to where I lived and I was going to find it.  Yes, I too like to live dangerously.

I couldn’t get to the street my apartment was on.  The apartment complex I lived in was on fire.  I made a couple more phone calls, and then my phone died.  The things I owned?  My car, the clothes on my back, a dead cell phone, and the items in my purse.  In fact, had the fire happened any later, most likely I would’ve been taking a nap.  Let’s add that I made it out with my life.

This one event would change my life forever.  You don’t know what it is like to really have nothing, until you have nothing.  One of the most prized possessions I happened to have with me that day was my high school class ring.  It is the only item I have from that time period.  Everything I owned went up in flames.

Weeks later they let us go back.  Nothing was left of my apartment.  Others residents were luckier than me.

So every Christmas, the fact that some really do have nothing is understandable to me.  I try to donate items I no longer use on a fairly regular basis.  You can ask my husband, I almost always have a pile of clothes around going to donation.  It bothers me to think that many open Christmas presents and are upset.  Be thankful for those socks and underwear.  Those things can mean the world to those who truly have nothing.



Author: Jess

Texan by birth, Okie by current address. Journalist who caught the travel bug. I have a healthy dachshund obsession and spend endless hours reading about world history on Wikipedia.

4 thoughts on “Chestnuts Roasting on a Bonfire

  1. Thank you for sharing your story. It was very eye opening and true, we truly never appreciate things until they are gone. Thank God you were okay!

  2. I remember that day. I lived in the apartments right across the street. I was very thankful my apartment was okay, but felt awful those who couldn’t say the same. I remember people taking pictures and that really pissed me off. I kept thinking don’t they understand that someone’s home and possibly everything they own is burning in flames. Could people taking pictures not see people standing around crying. People don’t think about others as much these days and sadly that is mostly people our age or younger.

  3. Reblogged this on It's Time To Turn This Mush Into Muscle!!!! and commented:
    This is a very good read from my old college friend!!!!

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