12 Gifts That Keep On Giving

12 Gifts That Keep On Giving

These are the most perfect, meaningful, possibly last minute gifts you can give.
Cat D
Cat D
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It's the holiday season! Finally. This is also the season of giving. For some, this is easy. Get all your shopping done on black Friday (or cyber Monday) and you're set to go. For others getting the perfect gift is extremely hard to figure out. So, if you're still looking to give a gift, give a little more with the gifts below.

1. Hippopotamus for Christmas - I'll take two.

Through the World Wildlife Fund you can actually donate to fund worldwide conservation efforts. You can choose what species you want to "adopt" so you can give your s/o a freaking lion if you wanted to... or you could be trendy and go with a llama. Yes. That is an option.

https://gifts.worldwildlife.org/gift-center/gifts/...

2. Jumping on the FTK Bandwagon.

I know everyone is always sharing their funds pages... but now you have an even better reason to donate. It's a twofer (two for one) deal. Not to mention the Childrens Miracle Network makes the day so much brighter for so many children and families every day! Let's make the holidays even brighter.

https://dancemarathon.childrensmiraclenetworkhospi...

3. I'll Be Home for Christmas.

What a catchy WW2 song, but it's so valid even for today's soldiers! Help some soldiers who have already made their journey home and are in transition back to their American lifestyles. The Wounded Warrior Project has a dollar for dollar donation match for the season. How could you say no to that?

https://support.woundedwarriorproject.org/default....

4. Truly and A+ Gift.

You can actually adopt a classroom! Adopt a Classroom aims to help offset costs of classroom materials so kids can have a better education.I'll be the first to raise my hand for this one!

https://www.adoptaclassroom.org/home-search/?utm_e...

5. Pass the Plate Around Please.

Through Feeding America, you can help out those families who may be in need this holiday season. This is an amazing way to help share the love and the food!

http://www.feedingamerica.org/hunger-blog/seven-wa...

6. Support.

Mental health is a wonderful gift that can often be overlooked. CAMH is a great resource to help support those who are progressing towards a brighter tomorrow. Be thoughtful.

http://give.camh.ca/site/PageServer?pagename=gifts...

7. Santa is Getting Old.

According to the Salvation Army, 1 in 7 elderly are affected by dementia. They have created a means to which we can provide resources for all those getting old with Santa. Make sure you're on the nice list.

http://www.salvationarmyusa.org/usn/love-the-elder...

8. Great Idea Einstein.

The US International Rescue Committee reaches out a helping hand for those who are in crisis. Fun fact about this charity is that it was madeby request of Einstein. That's when you know it's a good idea.

https://help.rescue.org/donate?ms=gs_charity_gen_i...

9. All About the Kids.

The holidays are great for everyone, but there's something extra magical about them for children. There are so many amazing groups out there set on making this season a happy time for all kids. This link actually lists quite a few, the more the merrier!

https://www.thespruce.com/charities-that-help-chil...

10. Rudolph the ~read~ Nose Reindeer.

I purposely wrote read instead of red. We do have editors you know. What you might not know though is that 1 in 4 children grow up without learning to read. How can you help? Read the link (select literacy)

https://www.pibetaphifoundation.org/givenow

11. Santa Paws.

If you can't give me a puppy for Christmas, making sure one is healthy, warm, and fed will do too! Donations to the Humane Society provide love, compassion, and care for all those little animals out there who may not have a home!

https://secure.humanesociety.org/site/Donation2?df...

12. Park it Here.

The National Parks Service works to provide the best experience for park goers while sustaining these incredible sites. Get away from the city sidewalks, busy sidewalks, and dress yourself in some outdoorsy holiday cheer.

https://www.nps.gov/getinvolved/donate.htm


Cover Image Credit: Willow Oaks

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To The Person Who Feels Suicidal But Doesn't Want To Die

Suicidal thoughts are not black and white.
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Everyone assumes that if you have suicidal thoughts that means you want to die.

Suicidal thoughts are thought of in such black-and-white terms. Either you have suicidal thoughts and you want to die, or you don't have suicidal thoughts and you want to live. What most people don't understand is there are some stuck in the gray area of those two statements, I for one am one of them.

I've had suicidal thoughts since I was a kid.

My first recollection of it was when I came home after school one day and got in trouble, and while I was just sitting in the dining room I kept thinking, “I wonder what it would be like to take a knife from the kitchen and just shove it into my stomach." I didn't want to die, or even hurt myself for that matter. But those thoughts haven't stopped since.

I've thought about going into the bathroom and taking every single pill I could find and just drifting to sleep and never waking back up, I've thought about hurting myself to take the pain away, just a few days ago on my way to work I thought about driving my car straight into a tree. But I didn't. Why? Because even though that urge was so strong, I didn't want to die. I still don't, I don't want my life to end.

I don't think I've ever told anyone about these feelings. I don't want others to worry because the first thing anyone thinks when you tell them you have thoughts about hurting or killing yourself is that you're absolutely going to do it and they begin to panic. Yes, I have suicidal thoughts, but I don't want to die.

It's a confusing feeling, it's a scary feeling.

When the depression takes over you feel like you aren't in control. It's like you're drowning.

Every bad memory, every single thing that hurt you, every bad thing you've ever done comes back and grabs you by the ankle and drags you back under the water just as you're about the reach the surface. It's suffocating and not being able to do anything about it.

The hardest part is you never know when these thoughts are going to come. Some days you're just so happy and can't believe how good your life is, and the very next day you could be alone in a dark room unable to see because of the tears welling up in your eyes and thinking you'd be better off dead. You feel alone, you feel like a burden to everyone around you, you feel like the world would be better off without you. I wish it was something I could just turn off but I can't, no matter how hard I try.

These feelings come in waves.

It feels like you're swimming and the sun is shining and you're having a great time until a wave comes and sucks you under into the darkness of the water. No matter how hard you try to reach the surface again a new wave comes and hits you back under again, and again, and again.

And then it just stops.

But you never know when the next wave is going to come. You never know when you're going to be sucked back under.

I always wondered if I was the only one like this.

It didn't make any sense to me, how did I think about suicide so often but not want to die? But I was thinking about it in black and white, I thought I wasn't allowed to have those feelings since I wasn't going to act on them. But then I read articles much like this one and I realized I'm not the only one. Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, and my feelings are valid.

To everyone who feels this way, you aren't alone.

I thought I was for the longest time, I thought I was the only one who felt this way and I didn't understand how I could feel this way. But please, I implore you to talk to someone, anyone, about the way you're feeling, whether it be a family member, significant other, a friend, a therapist.

My biggest mistake all these years was never telling anyone how I feel in fear that they would either brush me off because “who could be suicidal but not want to die?" or panic and try to commit me to a hospital or something. Writing this article has been the greatest feeling of relief I've felt in a long time, talking about it helps. I know it's scary to tell people how you're feeling, but you're not alone and you don't have to go through this alone.

Suicidal thoughts aren't black and white, your feelings are valid, and there are people here for you. You are not alone.

If you or someone you know is experiencing suicidal thoughts, call the National Suicide Prevention Hotline — 1-800-273-8255


Cover Image Credit: BengaliClicker

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5 Tips To Help You Feel Better If You're Sick

A few helpful tips if there's a bug going around.

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Not to brag, but I don't get sick very often, maybe once a year. When I do find myself a little under the weather, there's a few things I like to do for a faster recovery. I have no idea if any of these are 100% accurate, but I'd like to think they do. None of these will immediately make you feel better, but they'll help quicken the process.

Drink lots of water.

This one is a no-brainer, but it can be hard to do sometimes. I know when I'm sick, I definitely don't think about it. Water can help flush toxins out of your body, makes you hydrated, and can help you feel more awake and energized! If you're not a huge water drinker like I am, Tea also helps.

Stay home.

If you're sick, it's honestly better if you just take a day off and focus on feeling better. If you're worried about going to school or work, it's better that you don't spread anything. Let me just say, I'm fairly certain the last time I caught something was because someone behind me in a class was coughing through the entire lecture.

Rest.

This one goes with the last point, but sleeping will help your immune system fight off any infections. It's good to take some time off and get any extra sleep you can.

Clean everything.

I like to wash all of my clothes and bed sheet, because they're what I wear and touch the most, especially my pillow cases. This will help get rid of some germs and stop them from spreading. It's also good to disinfect anything you touch often, like doorknobs and table surfaces.

Take medicine.

This one also sounds like a no brainer, but seriously if you expect to feel better soon you should be taking some sort of medicine. At the very least, it'll help with your symptoms, so you're not couching or sneezing every couple minutes.

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