To Re-gift or Not Re-gift?

It’s Garrett from Shine Afternoons and I want to know if you received something this Christmas that you can’t use or don’t really want….would you re-gift it?  I struggle with it because I might forget who gave it to me, and I wouldn’t want to “re-gift” it back to the person.  My wife says……just re-gift it!  What about you?

Possum Trot Inspiration

Here’s an inspiring holiday story from an unlikely place–the tiny Texas town of Possum Trot.

Over the last 16 years, 25 families in that working-class community have adopted 76 children in need

According to NBC’s Today Show, W.C. Martin, the pastor of the local Bennett Chapel Baptist church, helped organize his congregation to help foster children in need.

Pastor Martin says “It’s not a whole lot that we have to offer children right here in Possum Trot. But love, peace and joy and happiness – we can offer them that.’’

Pastor Martin and his wife Donna have adopted four children themselves.

Donna told NBC News “The challenge with the kids is (them not) really, really trusting the love that you have to give them unconditionally.”  She points out that many of the children came from homes in which they were abused or neglected.

The foster families in Possum Trot care for these children despite their own difficult financial circumstances.

After giving so much over the years, the families received a surprise Christmas gift. courtesy of Walmart.  The company donated enough food to reopen the local food bank and provided each of the 25 adoptive families a cart of fresh groceries and a $500 gift certificate.  They also bought Christmas presents for each of kids

Pastor Martin was also given a $15,000 gift card to Walmart.  He says “This is like a prayer being answered,’’ “That we have prayed so hard for God, for someone, to do something. We didn’t know when, we didn’t know where, but we knew he was going to do something.’’

To learn more about this story, go to and enter “Possum Trot” in the search engine.

I’m Bill Maier for Shine.FM.


CLICK HERE for the audio version of this article.

What’s Your Unique Christmas Tradition?

What’s your unique family Christmas tradition?  ~ Garrett

Aunt Bethany’s Cat Food Jello

One of my favorite Christmas movies is “Christmas Vacation” and I made a comment to my wife earlier this week that maybe she should make “cat-food jello” for Christmas like Aunt Bethany does in the movie. Guess what I came home to yesterday…….?

The True Story of St. Nicholas

Did you know there really was a Saint Nicholas? Listen as Kurt shares the true story beyond the red suit and rosy cheeks.

True Story of Saint Nicholas

Operation: With Love From Home

Here’s a bit of Christmas cheer to share with you. Hundreds of volunteers lined up at a California church to fill 1,000 care packages for troops deployed overseas. Their goal was to make sure that soldiers in Afghanistan and other countries are not forgotten this holiday season.

According to a story in the Napa Valley Register, “Operation: With Love from Home” drew volunteers of all ages to CrossWalk Community Church. They worked in a chain to fill U.S. Postal Service boxes with cards, toiletries, beef jerky, socks, candy bars, soups and other goodies.

Among the volunteers was Vicki Langdale, a nurse whose son, Jarrod Little, of Lakeside, Texas, was killed in Iraq. Also helping out was Simri Casas, whose boyfriend is deployed overseas.

As she distributed packages of instant coffee, Casas said she had volunteered to give back and “to let (the troops) know that we love them and that we’re thankful for what they do.”

Operation: With Love from Home also sends care packages for Valentine’s Day and during the summer.

In the nearby community, volunteers with American Canyon Troop Support have been sending care packages every month for the past decade to soldiers deployed overseas. The group sends around packages every month, or about 700 parcels a year.

For Christmas, the volunteers packaged and shipped two boxes for each of 57 soldiers on the list. One box contained a 3-foot-tall artificial Christmas tree with ornaments, lights, and decorations including a Santa hat.

The other box was filled with hygiene items, holiday candy, blank holiday cards with pens, hot chocolate and hot apple cider packages, and cups of homemade fudge.

I’m Bill Maier, wishing you a Merry Christmas from Shine.FM!

CLICK HERE for the audio version of this article.

Elf on the Shelf

OK, I know I’m a little slow coming to the party, but this Elf on Shelf is kind of creepy. I had no idea that the purpose was to keep on eye out for my kids’ naughty behavior. A real-life Santa apprentice is a perfect way to keep misbehaving children in line! I’m leaving this guy out year round!

How Do You Keep “Christ” in Christmas?

It’s another “Walk-It-Out” Wednesday here on the New Shine.FM and I’d like to know how you keep Christ in “Christ”-mas? ~Garrett

Most Popular Christmas Songs for 2012

Christmas Carols-Retro kidsJust in case you were wondering ,the most popular Christmas songs
downloaded or sold so far this Christmas season are…..

1. O Come, All Ye Faithful
2. Joy To The World! The Lord Is Come
3. Hark! The Herald Angels Sing
4. Angels We Have Heard On High
5. Christ Has Come
6. Silent Night, Holy Night
7. O Holy Night!
8. O Come, O Come, Emmanuel
9. Go, Tell On The Mountain
10. The First Noel
11. Angels, From The Realms Of Glory
12. O Little Town Of Bethlehem
13. Away In A Manger
14. What Child Is This
15. Joy To The World (Unspeakable Joy)

What’s your favorite? ~Garrett

“A Hallelujah Christmas” by Cloverton

With the recent tragedy in Newtown, CT, Christmas has as different feel to it this year. Let’s remember, even in our darkest days, a Hope, a Light was born that night.