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Thoughts For Thursday: Warm Weather and Perspective

December 22, 2011 · 89 comments

in Life, Thoughts For Thursday

I was recently in Florida, and it was the first time I have ever spent part of the Christmas season in a warm climate.

I have to say, it was strange.

The first time I saw a Christmas tree in Florida and heard Christmas music, it just seemed `off` to me. Now, I recognize that a huge part of the world has never experienced a white Christmas, so a sunny, 80 degree day in December is just status quo. However, for this northerner who is used to a gray sky and sub freezing temperatures, it was a wonderful treat. I just had trouble associating the climate with the holiday, but I think I could definitely get used to it.

I wonder though, if I did move south, would I appreciate the nice weather, or would it just be a part of ordinary life? I ask this question about many things: Do the trials and tribulations we face in life force us to appreciate the good things?

It reminds me of a Twilight Zone episode I saw once.

In the episode titled “A Nice Place to Visit”, a small time criminal is shot during a robbery, and is escorted to the afterlife by “Mr. Pip”. In the afterlife, the criminal is granted his every wish, and he must live with the results of his wishes for all eternity. Sounds pretty good, right?

At the end of the episode, the petty criminal says something to the effect of: “Wow, if this is heaven, I wonder what the other place is like?”. YMr. Pip then says “this is the other place…”

Although the scene described above is a work of fiction, it makes you realize that variety very well may be the spice of life. Perhaps wondering what the future holds and having some amount of influence on your destiny is part of what makes life so great, even more so than being given everything you could possibly want?

Of course, I am not saying that catastrophic events are a great thing. However, sometimes it can be hard to see how great your circumstances really are if there are never any bad times to compare the good with. Just like in the example I discussed above, if I was always surrounded with sunny, warm days, would perfect weather just become expected and not appreciated?

What do you think? Do you embrace the great things in your life more so after a time of difficulty? Have you found there are things in your life that you once felt so grateful for, and now you take them almost for granted?

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{ 87 comments… read them below or add one }

Niki December 22, 2011 at 7:28 am

I love that episode.

I grew up in Florida and I can say I appreciate the warm weather now. Since I live in the a colder climate. I definitely took it for granted at the time though.

I think I am at a point in my life where I am appreciating the little things more. We had a job loss scare a few months ago, it worked out but that is one thing I am so thankful for everyday. My husband is set to be leaving for a few months because of his job (military) in January, so I’d like think that I am appreciating him more than ever right now.

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:25 am

Oh my gosh, that must be hard with your husband being deployed. You are making all of us appreciate our situations more now!

The Twilight Zone is such a great show. I loved Rod Serling.

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krantcents December 22, 2011 at 12:52 pm

Living in California for the last 40 years tends to skew my feelings. I like swimming on Christmas Day or bicycling in winter. I am a little embarrassed to say temperatures lower than 60 degrees are cold.
I hope I never take family and personal relationships for granted. I don’t think I will since they are so important to me.

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:21 am

KC, I am sure you do get used to swimming on Christmas after you have been doing it for so many years. That week in Florida was in such stark contrast to what I was used to that it really threw me off and confused me! I just couldn’t accept that Christmas was right around the corner.

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Miss T @ Prairie Eco-Thrifter December 23, 2011 at 12:12 pm

We have had a crazy warm winter this year. Very unheard of for where I live – Canada. We might not even have snow for Christmas. This is taboo.
Hope you have a great holiday weekend with your family.

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:19 am

Thanks Miss T. Did you get your white Christmas? We did not!

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Moneycone December 24, 2011 at 10:35 am

Having lived on both sides, I still prefer sunny regions! (Or maybe I’ve lived in the east coast for too long now! )

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:16 am

I love the east cost Moneycone! However, getting a break from either coast for a vacation can be a great thing. I think I want to fly off to Yosemite now…

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101 Centavos December 24, 2011 at 7:18 pm

Having lived in hot desert climates for many years, I *much* prefer a cold winter. A couple years ago we even managed to have a White Christmas.

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:13 am

We did not have a white Christmas this year! I really missed seeing the Christmas lights covered by a blanket of snow.

I don’t think I could handle living year-round in a hot climate, but I did like visiting!

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First Gen American December 26, 2011 at 7:16 am

I often wonder about my children. They have so much more than I did growing up and sometimes I’m afraid they won’t have the perspective like I did. I guess it’s one of the reasons I would like to remain frugal even if I can “afford” nicer things. Still, we eat out regularly and have good vacations and they just got a ton of toys from santa and relatives.

Back when I only had 2 weeks vacation, I would often go away over xmas and new years because it was an extra 3 vacation days we could use. I like xmas in strange places. Every time we hear feliz navidad, we think of our trip to south africa as it seemed to be the only christmas song they had been playing over there, over and over and over again.

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Kris December 28, 2011 at 11:12 am

Feliz Navidad is a tough song for me to take, it just burns a hole in my brain. The message is good, just can’t stand the song. It is great you have a good memory to associate with it.

I worry about my kids too as they never had to struggle (at least so far). I will say though that my 3 teens all appreciate money, and two thirds of my kids are quite frugal. My youngest is quite impulsive, and I think that is an inborn trait for him. We have worked on his spending impulse though, and have had some success.

Even though you have some money, the example you set is so important. You are doing all the right things.

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