Giving Thanks this Holiday Season
Posted November 22, 2021
8 min read
Thanksgiving and the holidays that follow can be a time where we not only stop and reflect on the good in our lives, but we tend to be more expressive of what we appreciate, too.
There are quite a few benefits of acknowledging what we’re thankful for. In fact, research has supported that gratitude is associated with greater happiness, and it helps people feel more positive emotions, relish good experiences, build strong relationships, and it can even help to improve our health (1).
Knowing there is much to be grateful for, we asked clients, partners, supporters of CRäKN, and some of our team members the question: as you reflect on this past year—and look forward to next year—what are you grateful for?
Here are the responses we received.
For Many Acts of Kindness
“During this past year I have witnessed so many acts of kindness and willingness to assist others. I am so proud of our profession and our collective response to difficult times. Honored and thankful to every single service rendered positively for our families! Thankful for all!” —Danny Jefferson, Pierce-Jefferson Funeral Service
For Health, Family & Friends
“Being in the death care industry has always made me appreciate each day. The pandemic highlighted that fact for many people. I have been fortunate (and cautious) to have not been sick. Being grateful for my health is truer than ever. I am also grateful for my family and a great group of true friends that love and support me. Working with caring, intelligent, and professional people makes my job very enjoyable. Happy Thanksgiving!” —Barbie Berger, Key Account Rep, CRäKN
For Humanity’s Strength
“Thanksgiving is one of my favorite times of year because it reminds us to be grateful. Although 2021 seemed better than 2020 in many ways…many still had a rough year. But, we trudged through, and I am grateful for humanity’s strength. I’m also grateful for:
- My health and hope to never take a day for granted.
- My family and the support and love they provide me.
- Our team and the technology they support that enhances our rituals to honor our dearly departed.
- Our customers and their dedication to helping families connect and heal.
I hope we all get a chance to stop and find some time to thank all the people who make our lives better. We know this has been another rough year, but we see your strength and wish you all the best this Thanksgiving.” —Rick Rampton, President, Viewlogies
“On a personal level, I am grateful for friends and family. without them, it would be a very lonely life.”
For Those Who Continue to Innovate
“On a business level, I am grateful for those who continue to put their trust in me and for the ability to work in a way that I enjoy. I am also grateful for those who continue to innovate to reach an increasingly complex and different market than what we served only 20 years ago.” —Alan Creedy, premier small business and funeral home consultant
For Supportive Staff & Family
“As I look back on the past year, I am thankful that we have persevered through the trials, the demands, and we were able to continue to serve, hard as it was at times. Several of my personal friends were victims of the year.
Those circumstances give all of us a new look at life. It took all of us to support each other. I am very thankful for the entire staff and especially my family.
As we look into the next 12 months, we look with gratitude for what we believe is coming. I have faith that it will be less stressful and demanding and that we can provide the services to families that they deserve and have missed.”—Bob Arrington, Arrington Funeral Directors
For Funeral Home Owners & Their Dedication
“I am grateful for our family, our clients, our friends and those we only know casually. They all help form our opinions and behaviors. This past year, while challenging for so many, showcased funeral service far beyond the norm. Funeral directors stepped out of their normal duties and many delivered optimal service during a time of restrictions.
Having worked with funeral home owners for 42 years, their dedication and professionalism over the last year reminds me of why I focused on funeral service. For the most part they are exemplary stewards and just good people. As with the holidays of 2020, we need to recognize the present challenges and move forward in celebration.” —David Nixon, Nixon Consulting
For Unwavering Staff
“I am most thankful for an absolutely amazing and talented staff who has pushed through the pressures of this year. Everyone in our entire organization has had to triumph over unanticipated hurdles and they have done so with a positive attitude and smiles on their faces!
Next year, we look forward to solidifying ‘next level’ training for our team members so that way they can be the most knowledgeable in the industry. I am very grateful to work alongside my work family, my actual family, and to work day in and day out with an absolutely wonderful group of funeral home customers!” —Danielle Thacker, VP, Sales & Marketing, Thacker Caskets
For Family & Caring Colleagues
“As this calendar year draws to a close and the holidays are upon us, it amazes me at how quickly time passes. The older I get and the longer I’m in the death care industry I understand that we are all very much alike. At the end of the day, it’s true in that our family is the very most important thing to us.
We have a great network of friends and colleagues in our business and after I give my family the thanks that they deserve for supporting me, I like to look around and acknowledge the strength of the business people around me. I am so thankful for my family and so thankful for my industry colleagues who care so much. It’s that care that sets us apart and holds our dedication together.” —Dave Kolbe, Messenger Sales Consultant
For the Many Community Connections
“As someone who practices mindful gratitude, I was surprised to find myself struggling with these few words. Struggling not because I lack things for which to be grateful, but because I have so many.
I’m grateful that Covid didn’t touch our family and community any harder than it did. I’m grateful for 31 years of marriage to my best friend, and the life we’ve built together. I’m grateful that my oldest son came home more or less safely from war, and that his little brother never had to go. I’m grateful for my beautiful daughter-in-law and my precious grandson. I’m grateful for all the dogs I’ve ever had, the two I have now, and the pups that are surely still in my future.
I’m grateful for this little community where we started our business five years ago and made our forever home. I’m grateful for the hard work and struggle it took to get here, because adversity builds character. I’m grateful for all the new friends we’ve found here, and for the families who trust us so much with their loved ones. And I’m grateful that I’ve learned to practice gratitude with intention, to recognize small things in life as precious tiny treasures that lay the foundation upon which to build a happy life.” —Mary Holt, Owner, Holt & Holt Funeral Home
For Time with Loved Ones
“This year has been an amazing year for me! I attended some unforgettable weddings (my own included), am running a successful business with amazing partners, collaborating and growing with CRäKN, milestone birthdays, watching my kids play sports, making much needed improvements to our home, and getting to travel to Jamaica, Hawaii, and California (despite Covid). When I look back, I’d say this was one of my favorite years of all time!
But what am I grateful for? Time. The time I’ve had to spend with my family during this past year has been unforgettable. Time with my husband and kids, this year I’ve had more time with my brother and his wife than I’ve had since they moved 2,000 miles away, and the time I’m spending with my mother and extended family. We can’t ever get time back, so I cherish it.” —Erin Heimbrock, Integration Partner
For Being Able to Celebrate Together
“During the pandemic, we all had a chance to slow down and really consider what was important, and I think a lot of us realized that being with the people we love face to face is an irreplaceable part of our mental health. I am so grateful that this year’s holiday season can be safely celebrated with friends and family.” —Danielle Burmeister, Director, Marketing Communications, Homesteaders Life Company
May Your Thanksgiving Be Filled With Joy & Appreciation
This holiday season, we want to be sure to mention how thankful we are for our community, including our partners, clients, team members, and other supporters. We look forward to growing with you in 2022.
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