Our Voice: We're thankful for elves, Samaritans and other helpers

December 26, 2013 

We have so many things to be thankful for this time of year. The holiday season brings out a sense of gratitude and generosity in all of us.

For the past month, our Thankful Thursday column has been filled with good deeds and do-gooders. It's gratifying for us to see people helping each other and to know that there are many more people giving of their time and money who we don't know about.

We look forward to seeing this kindness extended into the new year.

Holiday light contest

We're betting that you received fewer Christmas cards this year than you did just a few years ago. We also are betting there are fewer houses in your neighborhood that put up Christmas lights.

We're not sure if those two phenomena are a reflection that fewer people are feeling the Christmas spirit or if it just means that we are celebrating in ways that are less outward or more online.

It could just be a reflection of our busy and changing lifestyles.

Whatever the case, when you drive by a house that is fully decked out in lights, it is the exception rather than the rule, anymore.

And, as a reminder, everyone has one more day to vote in our online contest to select the best local holiday light display. Go to tricityherald.com/contests to see the entries and cast your vote. But do it today. The contest ends tomorrow.

And to those who invested the physical energy to put up Christmas lights and the electrical energy to keep them glowing, thank you. It's cheery to see holiday displays on our long, dark nights.

JROTC

We often mention in this column that we're grateful for those who serve in our military. And we are. So we'll say it again. Thank you.

Our military is essential to our country's safety and freedoms.

It also does something for those who serve. Being in a unit, of any kind, builds camaraderie and teaches discipline. Both are desirable traits.

We also are eager to see the new reserve officer training program that is coming to Kennewick High.

This program will give about 100 students the opportunity to participate in a training program that connects them to our community and country while giving them leadership training.

Whether or not these students pursue a career in the military and take advantage of the college benefit -- and we suspect many will -- just the experience they gain in high school will be valuable.

Snow helpers

Our recent snow fall and accompanying road hazards, remind us of the goodness of people when things go wrong.

The neighbor who shovels your walk, the driver who stops to help when you've slid off the road, the stranger who lends you the use of his battery and jumper cables all makes us thankful we live in an area that has a sense of community.

The winter months are more treacherous. And the Thankful Thursday letters warm our hearts when we read about the kindness Mid-Columbians show each other.

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