December 2016 Newsletter Volume 2 Issue 5

Chairlady's Note

大家好嗎! Hello Everyone!

For many of us, gratitude is a part of the holiday season. First, harvest festivals kick off a season of thanksgiving. My family favorite was always American Thanksgiving.

In December, Hanukkah comes for the Jewish with a celebration from repression of their religion and a rededication to the temple. In the Muslim religion, people honor Milad un Nabi, recognizing Muhammed's birthday through gift-giving and giving food to the poor. And of course Christmas, a time for Christians to give thanks for the birth of Jesus.

Before Christianity came to the Roman empire, December 25th was recognized as the Winter Solstice and birthday of Saturn. It was also considered a time of gift exchange, and nobles would serve dinner to their servants. Of course there are many other festivals in different cultures that occur around this time of years.Did you know that the date on which Christmas is celebrated was adopted during the rein of the first Christian Roman Emperor, Constantine.

What is interesting is that most of these festivals recognize the importance of appreciation and gratitude. You may know that psychologists suggest that a key element of happiness is found in the ability to feel gratitude. BUT I don't think we needed them to tell us. In almost all of our cultural traditions, a great emphasis is placed on creating the time and space for gift exchange and helping others. Millennia before someone tested happiness and gratitude under "lab conditions," there was already a system in place to evoke and honor thankfulness and generosity of spirit.

How cool that the very premise of our IWAT founders was to create a place to find this element of happiness! Our motto Friendship makes a difference! and our dedication to helping others embody this idea of gratitude. I am grateful to have found this base, this home away from home that has allowed me to meet women of amazing talent and kindness. It has also provided me with the opportunity here to experience generosity and appreciation through reaching out to newcomers and raising money for charity.

At the Christmas party, on Saturday, we will share the fellowship of friends, enjoy the work of our talented volunteers (who have put together an awesome program!), and appreciate the joy of watching children receive gifts from Santa. I cannot wait to experience this special time with you all.

With much love,

Rebecca MacNeal


1. Hiking Club Coordinator

2. Christmas Party Helpers

3. December 14th Luncheon Helpers

4. COFFEE MORNING and BOOK CLUB Hostesses Needed!!!

Please email to get involved!



December December 3 6pm-9pm Christmas Celebration

December 7 10am-12pm/7pm-9pm Book Club (The Boys on the Boat) December 14 11am-2pm Christmas Luncheon and Business Meeting


January 11 Chinese New Year Luncheon

January 18 10am-12pm Coffee Morning (Debbie)


February 8 11:30 Monthly Luncheon-Potluck! (Hostess Sue R.)

February 15 1pm-3pm Book Club (Brain on Fire)

February 22 10am-12pm Coffee Morning (Linda)

Check out our Calendar Here too!