The holidays have a way of reminding you of not only where you’re from, but also all the different people who bring joy into your life. Whether it’s because you’re headed home for the holidays or you’re spending time right where you’re at, the holidays tend to invite us to gather, connect and reunite. And I think it’s that feeling of community that brings me the most cheer this time of year.
The biggest community I miss at Christmas is of course my New Zealand community; we’re usually all together in NZ right now. But, for the second year in a row, we’ve had to miss out on that reunion. Having to skip that trip home has made me appreciate even more the amazing community my family and I have created and have surrounded ourselves with here in Buffalo.
Developing various networks of people in your life can be incredibly enriching, not to mention engaging and awe-inspiring. There’s nothing like seeing people come together because of shared attitudes, interests and goals—be it at the holidays supporting local businesses or throughout the year for events, work initiatives or day-to-day activities. When we first came to Buffalo, it was charitable events like the Ride for Roswell and the Turkey Trot that I instantly was drawn to, and have been a part of ever since. There’s nothing like showing up on the day of events like these where you are one of the thousands of people who chose to show up and put their time and energy toward the same goal. It’s wild to look around and see people of all different ages and backgrounds coming together in one spot. And it’s in moments like that where you truly feel a part of something bigger than yourself.
It’s also about the little communities that make up the greater community I’m a part of that drive and inspire me daily. Most recently, I was introduced to a group of individuals working professionally toward similar goals through the 43North business plan competition—talk about a treat to connect and learn from people pursuing the same dreams! I feel the same way about my food community on Facebook and Instagram. We experience growth together by sharing our ideas and opening our minds to different things. And let’s not forget my squash community, ha. I play twice a week, sometimes with 17-year-olds and sometimes with older people like me—I certainly know who I have a better chance of success with! What I love most, though, is that once you’re on the court it doesn’t matter who you are, or how old you are, you’re both there to win!
One of my most cherished communities is my work community. And for anyone who holds a 9-to-5, you know how much your work community means to you. I spend the most time with these people and we’re not all the same, but we share the same passion. I love that at Top Seedz we’ve created a fun, hard-working team that all want to make the best crackers we can.
To me, your community is what you make it. It’s looking after each other, learning from each other, having fun together and enriching each other’s lives. Wishing you all a happy and healthy holiday, and a new year that’s filled with continued love and support from all those who you call your “community.”