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How to Honor the Memory of a Loved One This Holiday Season

December 1, 2020

Remembering and honoring your loved one during the holiday season can help bring peace and comfort, whether it has been a recent loss or it has been many years since your loved one has passed.

Photo credit : sapocka /

Photo credit : sapocka /

No matter when the loss occurred, you may feel the absence of a loved one deeply during the holiday season because of the holiday memories, traditions, and rituals that involved that person. Here are some ideas you can use to remember and honor someone you miss during the holidays:

Make a Toast

It’s important to acknowledge your loved one as he or she will be on everyone’s minds as well. It’s helpful to speak openly about the person you’ve lost because it allows others the opportunity to share their thoughts and feelings, too. Sharing memories or making a toast in their name honors their memory and opens up the possibility for others to talk about their feelings of loss as well.

Light a Memorial Candle

Light a candle in memory of your loved one. You can say a blessing or prayer either before or after lighting the candle while invoking the name of your loved one. You and other participants can share memories or special moments they shared with your loved one during the holidays or any time of the year.

Create a Special Display

Create a consecrated space in your home with photos, candles and other mementos. You can read a poem or passage in their honor, light a candle, or say a prayer. Take framed photos and photo albums and display them in a spot where your holiday visitors are sure to see them. People enjoy flipping through photo albums and seeing images of loved ones over the years. Put out a bowl with slips of paper by the person’s photo for loved ones to write down why they are grateful to have had that person in their lives. Soon, your visitors will be reminiscing and telling stories about your loved one.

Repurpose Belongings

You can repurpose your loved one’s belongings by making gifts from your loved one’s clothing such as quilts, pillows or stuffed animals. A stuffed bear made from grandpa’s shirt gives a grandchild a way of holding onto the love. If you are holding onto some things that belonged to your loved one, use the holidays as a time to give away some items that could use a new home. Wrap up the items and write a note to the recipient about the significance of the item to your loved one and why you think they will appreciate having such a treasure. The sentimental value of the gift will be deeply appreciated.

Give Gifts in Memory of Your Loved One

There are many ways to make gift giving a way to honor and remember the special person that you are missing at this time of year. For someone who has everything, you can make a donation to a cause that was important to your loved one. By donating to charity as a way of giving a gift, you’re not only honoring your loved one, but making the world a better place, too.

If you’re out shopping and see a gift that you know your loved one would have enjoyed, buy it and donate it to charity or give it to someone else who would like it, too.

Give Yourself TLC

Everyone grieves in his or her own way, so choose the way that works best for you. While remembering and honoring your loved one, make sure to take care of yourself as best as you can. You can support yourself during the holidays by getting enough sleep; eating right; drinking moderately; exercising; helping others; and keeping your rooms well-lit to counteract the lack of sunshine during this time of year.


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