Time to start thinking about 07 | SierraSun.com

Time to start thinking about 07

This year I have decided the secret to a merry Christmas is doing all of my shopping before Thanksgiving.No more crowded stores. No more waiting in line at the post office. No more cursing like a sailor because I cant find my way out of the Meadowood Mall parking lot. I also had this theory in Christmas seasons 2002 through 2005, but Christmas 2007 is going to be different. I swear it.However, as we all know, Christmas isnt all about shopping, gifts, stress and foul language. Its a time of reflection. Its a time to plan how youre going to make a difference for the entire next year of your life.This basically comes down to two choices: Are you gonna spend time or money?

Time isnt always the easiest to give, but its worth considering. Make a plan now about the organizations you want to support with your blood, sweat and tears in 2007. Is it walking dogs for the Humane Society of Truckee-Tahoe, or is it tutoring students at the Boys & Girls Club of North Lake Tahoe?Be realistic. How much of your time can you spare each week? You can start small and increase your dedication as you feel comfortable. Many employers in the Truckee-North Shore area are supportive of employees taking an hour off here and there to help a worthy cause. Ask your boss.

For some (not all), the time-or-money decision is easy. After all, how long does it take to write a check? How difficult is it to forego dinner out a couple nights and save those funds for a worthy cause?Then we get to the difficult decision: Where to send the dough?Some of us are lucky enough to have our favorite local organizations. For those who are on the fence, theres the Truckee Tahoe Community Foundations Gifts for Good campaign.The community foundation takes into consideration the concerns most of us have when deciding where our money goes: Is there community support of and need for the project? Whats the impact of the project? How much of a difference will it make? Does the project duplicate services already offered in the area? Whats the health of the organization?For the past couple years, the campaign has been a fundraising powerhouse, raising more than $100,000 each year for organizations that make our community stronger.And we arent just talking about a flash-in-the-pan Christmas gift here. Local organizations will use your money throughout the year and beyond.Now get thinking. And dont worry, you have plenty of time to make up your mind. Christmas is 144 or so hours away.

GIFTS FOR GOODThere are four ways to give: Fill out the form in the Sierra Sun and send it to: Truckee Tahoe Community Foundation, PO Box 366, Truckee, CA 96160 Pick up a Gifts for Good envelope at local businesses. Call the community foundation at 587-1776. Donate online at http://www.ttcf.net.Rene Shadforth is assistant editor of the Sierra Sun.

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