Be kind to wait staff, cashiers

As the mad rush of the season sets in — are you done with your Christmas shopping? — bear in mind that those behind the counter at your local shops also feel the stress that comes with the holidays. In addition to whatever they are going through in their own lives, they often get to deal with us, their customers.

As we go about our routine, there are many things we can do to bring joy to others. Drop some change into the Salvation Army bucket on our way in or out of stores. Pick up presents for those in need through Toys for Tots, Christmas Cheer, or Adopt-A-Family.

As you leave your shopping, smile at the cashier. Show patience in long lines. Be grateful our economy as a whole is getting stronger, and remember that each person spending money is helping pay for jobs, not just putting more “things” in their homes.

When you grab a bite to eat between errands, leave a little bigger tip than you normally would. Remember everyone has struggles, and the holiday season — while for some are filled with joy and happiness, even if it’s stressful — can be filled with sorrow and loneliness or heartache.

Don’t contribute to that sorrow. Fill hearts with joy this season.

If your heart is lonely this year, reach out. While it isn’t always apparent on social media sites, we know that when the chips are down, this community comes together. Someone can help, whether you need gifts under your tree, food on your table, or just need someone to listen to you, someone can help.

Let’s embrace this holiday season with joy, warmth and love. If you haven’t whispered your Christmas wishes to Santa yet, you still can Friday at the courthouse square during Summerfest, which starts at 5 p.m.

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