Reaching out at Christmas

By Ruth L. Snyder


This is a busy season for all of us. Christmas in North America usually includes:

  • Sending cards
  • Buying gifts
  • Baking cookies (see one of my favorite recipes below!)
  • Time with family and friends
  • Singing carols
  • Turkey and all the trimmings
  • Going to church


In the midst of our busyness, it’s easy to forget that this season is difficult for some people:

  • Those who are serving overseas
  • Those who are grieving
  • Those who are sick
  • Those who are alone
  • Those who are living in poverty


Over the years, my husband and I have consciously chosen projects to participate in with our children to remind them that Christmas should be about giving, not receiving. Some of the projects we’ve done with our family are:

  • Baking cookies and delivering them to the elderly
  • Writing letters to missionaries serving overseas
  • Caroling around our neighborhood
  • Serving a meal to people who live on the street (
  • Inviting people to join us for Christmas dinner
  • Sending gifts to children who have none through Samaritan’s Purse (
  • Visiting people in the hospital or nursing home
  • Supplying a small business loan through the Dalit Freedom Network (


We have discovered the more we share ourselves, the more joy we experience. We have also watched our children develop gratitude and gain a heart for serving others. What more could we wish for our children?


How do you reach out at Christmas? I’d love to hear if you have new ideas for us to try. Merry Christmas!


Download the Cover for your book here: cover

And here is the pdf of the recipe: dec 22

Fruit Cookies with Cherries

(A recipe passed down from my husband’s great-grandmother, Rebecca Snyder)


½ cup butter                                                  1 cup brown sugar

2 egg yolks                                                     2 tsp. vanilla

2 tsp. almond flavoring                                2 cups flour

1 cup chopped nuts                                      1 cup chopped dates

1 cup crushed pineapple                              1 tsp. soda

Maraschino cherries


Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Cream together butter and brown sugar. In a separate bowl, beat egg yolks, vanilla, and almond flavoring. Add to butter mixture. Add flour, nuts, dates, pineapple and soda. Mix well. Drop by spoonful onto a baking sheet and  place a maraschino cherry on top. Bake for 20 minutes.


These cookies store well and freeze well. (My husband says they’re best after they have been frozen and thawed.)


Ruth is a wife to Kendall and mother to Grace, Luke, Levi, Jayson, & Dorothy. She enjoys writing and teaching Music for Young Children, as well as reading, crafts, gardening, traveling, and photography. Ruth is a member of The Word Guild and the Christian PEN and currently serves as President of InScribe Christian Writers’ Fellowship. Connect with Ruth at

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