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January Submissions

Holidays are fun. There’s Christmas, Hanukkah, New Year’s Day, Lunar New Year, Easter and the like. We also celebrate special days just for fun – like Valentine’s Day … Halloween … Super Bowl Sunday … the World Cup … and so on.

Whatever the occasion, we all have our own way of celebrating. With that in mind, the December & January Giving Program question for kids is:

What are your favorite holidays (or special occasions) and how do you celebrate them?

Bonus points for telling us about (and especially sharing photos of) special celebrations you’ve enjoyed in the past.

Kok Sam Teo

Kok Sam Teo (6-8)

This is my first graduation. It's just a small step for me, but a giant leap for my future. I had my favorite burger at McDonald's after the event. I'm so happy because I received many gifts from my teachers and friends.

Mohammed Ahmed

Mohammed Ahmed (12-14)

All holidays are fun, but we have our preferences. My name is Mohammed Ahmed and I am 13 years old. My favorite Holiday is Eid Al-Fitr, a festival celebrated by Muslims that marks the end of Ramadan. Ramadan is an Islamic month in which Muslims fast (refraining from food, drink, and any kind of wrongdoing) from pre-dawn to sunset and have special night prayers. Fasting in Ramadan teaches Muslims about self-control, tells us what real hunger is, and serves as a reminder to always give to and be kind to the financially challenged and to constantly be grateful to Allah ("God" in Arabic) for what we have. On the day of Eid Al-Fitr, we have Eid Prayers, in which we go to the Eidgah and pray in the congregation. An Eidgah is a large, outdoor field in which Muslims pray Eid Prayers. It is only used for Eid and not regular prayers. My local mosque rents 2 soccer fields for the Eid prayers. The men and kids pray in one section, while the ladies pray in a separate area. After the prayer, the Imam (the leader of the worship; in other words, a Priest for Muslims) delivers a sermon. This sermon is in Arabic and English. It is first given in Arabic because Arabic is the official language of Islam. After, it is translated into English so that the majority of listeners understand the lecture. These sermons usually remind the people to remember and worship God, be good to their neighbors, relatives, friends, family, and anybody we meet. Another major topic Imams mention is to spread peace and happiness wherever we go. To wrap up the sermon, the Imam wishes us a happy Eid. We also give to a mandatory charity before the prayer. This charity is called "Fitr" and is given to the poor and needy. We have social gatherings with our friends, where we talk and eat together. My most favorite part of the festival is the gifts. Family members give to one another as a sign of love. We also make unique food dishes that are designated only for the occasion! In past Eids, I have prayed Eid Salah at the Eidgah, listened to the Imam's sermon, headed over to my friends' houses, wolfed down the scrumptious dishes my Mom makes, and received gifts! Over the years, I have gotten an RC Plane, a Drone, and a Microsoft Surface 3 from my parents. I have also gotten a lot of other things that I can't recall! When I grow up, I plan to gift my parents on Eid as well in exchange for love.

Eve Hansen

Eve Hansen (15-17)

My favorite holiday is Christmas because I like shopping for presents for my family and friends. It’s always fun to try to find gifts that will put a smile on the recipient’s face. Aside from buying presents for my brothers and sisters, my family does a big gift exchange with our extended family every year, so I get to shop for a different person almost every time. Another special gift giving tradition I love is when me and my best friends give each other presents at our church’s Christmas Eve service. We often give each other special little ornaments, or necklaces we’ve made. It’s always special to give presents to the people close to me, and that’s why Christmas is my favorite holiday.

Pax Hansen

Pax Hansen (9-11)

My favorite holiday is Halloween. I don’t know completely why, but something about it feels fun. When I go out at night to go get candy that is fun to do. But that’s not the thing that makes me love it. The truth is, it’s not the candy even though it’s delicious, I prefer to have fun with my family. And the things that make it fun for me are costume preparation and planning, and the anxiety and spookiness of this night.

Vera Hansen

Vera Hansen (6-8)

My favorite holiday is Christmas. Not because we get presents, but because we get to celebrate Jesus's birth. This Christmas it snowed until it actually looked like it had been snowing for a few days. So, we got a white Christmas! Later in the day we got to go to my cousin’s house and all our cousins were there, and I got to play with all my cousins. We did a cousin gift exchange and a grown-up gift exchange. This Christmas we did an advent calendar and I got to put the star on the top of the tree. We had a fake tree up with all sorts of ornaments up in the family room and in the living room we had a live tree (my sister found a spider on it) and it was covered in matching red ornaments with this red glowing star on the top. And we had gold sparkly tulle wrapped around it. We also went to a drive-thru Nativity that our church does every year.

Valor Hansen

Valor Hansen (3-5)

My favorite holiday is Easter. I like it is because sometimes in an egg you get treats and some lizards, and a lot of fun stuff. I knew you couldn't eat them all, if there was a lot. And I also love my mom. I also like Christmas because you get presents from your mom. On Easter you get some treats from bunnies, well, maybe one or three or seven or eight. We go to church in nice outfits. That's all of the things I love.

Charis Chew

Charis Chew (6-8)

My favourite holiday is CHRISTMAS! I like Christmas because I get to wrap gifts, bake Christmas cookies and decorate the Christmas tree. I get many gifts every year =D. Christmas is special because we celebrate to remember the birthday of Jesus. Mommy said that is the reason we give gifts because God first gifted His only Son to us; Jesus Christ. That is why this celebration is called 'Christ'mas. Last year was the first time ever we couldn't go to church on Christmas day. We stayed at home to celebrate with family because Covid-19 is still around. Before Covid-19, we celebrated Christmas in church, had Christmas lunch with church friends where we exchanged gifts. Back at home, I usually couldn't wait to open Christmas gifts. Mommy often said I am so blessed because many people love me and blessed me with gifts. I wish Christmas is every day of the year =D

Annie Lee

Annie Lee (15-17)

My favourite holiday is none other than the vacation to Korea in Dec 2017. For the first time, I get to travel with my family and my godmother; Jenmics. This is her keeping her promise that we must go for a trip together to make beautiful memories and indeed we made loads of them in Seoul, Korea which was an 8D6N tour. We chose winter season to experience the cold weather as we are from a tropical country. It was my first-time skiing and we kept falling since we didn't know how to balance ourselves. But, we had so much fun experiencing snow. It was really beautiful. We enjoyed Korean food which can't be compared to the ones we have in Malaysia. The sceneries were so beautiful. Our 'crazy' godmother and goddaughter even had ice cream in the cold weather. It was so funny because we were not in sufficient thick clothing so brr...we were really cold to the bones, but yet so enjoyable. I guess that is what people do when they are on holidays. They do crazy things that usually we don't get to do on normal days at home. I really hope Covid-19 pandemic will be over soon so that we can have our next holiday together again.

Claire Frost

Claire Frost (3-5)

4th of July is my favorite because I love fireworks and poppers. I like to put small flags in my neighbor's yard and surprise them too!

WE ARE ONE (HUNDRED)

We’re working collectively to assist people in need both in the U.S. and around the world through the Giving Program. And we’re inviting you to help make it happen.

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