BY: JOSIAH DEAN It’s just after Thanksgiving, with Solstice, Christmas, and Hanukah holidays just ahead, so the feeling of gratitude and fullness is still running strong within me. This year more than most it seems we have so much to be grateful for. With all that is going on around us in the world, our cup is full and we are blessed. And I know that regardless of the circumstances of your life, you are too. But it seems like Christmas was inserting it’s presence before Thanksgiving was even over! Now that it’s December it is full-swing commercialized holiday madness already. And with that comes a season of rushing around to holiday events, while crazily shopping–spending too much money trying to get that perfect something for someone, and meeting everyone’s holiday needs. No wonder we lose track of our own holiday dreams. It’s so easy to get sucked into the swirl of it all. This season is all about giving and as we get swept up, there’s no time to receive. So the energy is going all one way: out. If that cycle isn’t replenished we are bound to feel depleted, drained, and even resentful. There’s another option. Take charge of your holiday season. Put your plans on “pause” and ask yourself: What are the traditions you participate in that you just groan and growl over? If you’re doing things that you secretly hate, it’s not worth your precious resources of time, energy and money. Consider delegating or bowing out this year. What really brings joy, hope and light? (That’s what this season is meant to be about, right?) Make a commitment to do those things and jettison the rest. Give yourself time to receive this holiday season. Create and enjoy memories that serve you. Why am I telling you all this? At the Balch, we are all about creating a space where you can relax and rejuvenate. Because we know you’re busy, life is complicated and you need a way to reconnect and restore yourself. We even have gift certificates to stay here, you know? In the near future we’ll be sharing more around this theme, with ways to inspire you to do just that. It seems the holidays are a good time to kick it off. Our newest holiday tradition, the Thanksgiving feast, and Super Saturday Supper series were a smashing feat (truly!). We worked hard but created memorable evenings that guests raved about. It was heartwarming to see new friendships forged over lively conversation as we sat around big tables sharing delicious food. Travelers from near and far remarked at what a respite from their weary lives this getaway treat was for them. Of course, we’d love to have your New Holiday Tradition include us at the Balch. We’ve got some sweet, low-key, high-delight events planned for Christmas and New Year’s Eve (see below). And if you want help creating easy, elegant, graceful holiday memories, we still have 1 or 2 dates to host your holiday party. Think of it: we decorate, cook, and clean up; you and your guests have the run of the Balch for the evening or weekend. Hit reply and email us or call 541.467.2277 for more info. Our monthly Saturday Supper Series was a HUGE success (thanks Kathy and Stu Watson and crew!) Our next Balch Bounty is on December 12, same day as Dufur Hometown Christmas. We’re super excited. Read on for details below. Here’s to creating Holidays of your dream and design, Claire and Josiah PS… Buy One, Get One. In the spirit of bounty and gratitude we created a super juicy spa special for December. Purchase any $75 gift certificate for Bliss at the Balch Spa/Wellness treatment and 30 minutes of a free mini service (guest’s choice) is included. That means your loved one can have 1 service and then try something they’ve been curious about with a 30 minute mini treatment. Or get one for you. After all, you ARE on your own list, right? 😉 You can reserve that here.