Some reasons to be thankful at Christmas time


With the Christmas season upon us, several REALTORS® took the time to share their thoughts on what they’re most thankful for, and what they’ll be doing to make a difference at Christmas and in the New Year.
RE/MAX Performance Realty’s Jeff Stern said he plans to lend a helping hand at the Craig Street Cats Feral Cat Shelter over the holidays.
“I’m thankful that I have the opportunity to fill in for the hardworking volunteers and staff who are going to be taking some much-needed time off,” he said. “My wife Cheryl and I are going to roll up our sleeves and help with chores at the animal rescue shelter to give the good folks there some well-deserved downtime.”
He added that he’s thankful his success in the real estate field has provided him with the financial wherewithal to give back to the industry that has served him so well.
“I feel blessed financially that I was able to become a builder for the Manitoba Real Estate Association Shelter Foundation, and participate again in the WinnipegREALTORS® Gimme Shelter fund raiser that supports our foundation, helping less fortunate folks in Manitoba who are battling addictions, abuse and homelessness. I’m also thankful that I’m working in a great real estate career where I’ve  been able to help so many people over the past 20 years.”
Shona Scappaticci, who owns Realty Executives First Choice with husband John Scappaticci, said one of the things she’s most thankful for is the country she lives in.
“You know, I am truly grateful that I live in the greatest country in the world,” she said. “I’ve never known war, unlike so many people in other countries around the world. And I’m so thankful for living in Manitoba, which is one of the most prosperous provinces in Canada right now. Mostly, we are grateful for the wonderful staff and gracious realtors we have supporting us in our brokerage.”
Scappaticci added that she feels fortunate to live in a city that cares so much for those who are in need.
“Winnipeg has a heart that beats for those who are less fortunate. I am so very grateful to be a Winnipegger, and look forward to the opportunity to serve as an office as partners with Siloam Mission, and builders with Habitat for Humanity.”
Like Scappaticci, Century 21 Bachman & Associates’ Cole Castelane is thrilled to be living in such a great city.
“To tell you the truth, I’m most thankful for the fabulous city we live in. In my mind, Winnipeg truly is one of the world’s best-kept secrets. Not only is the city clean, fresh and prosperous, it’s also affordable, unlike most of the country’s other major cities.”
Unlike some who complain about the weather, Castelane sees Winnipeg’s four seasons as a plus.
“Where else do you get a change of seasons like Winnipeg? The summers are gorgeous, fall is spectacular with all the colours, and while the winters can be cold, they’re a fun time with so much to do. And our springs are so clean and fresh, they make you forget about winter pretty darn quickly. Last but not least, Winnipeg is a centrally-located city with a wealth of history and culture — a great place to call home.”
When he thinks about what he’s most thankful for, Royal LePage Dynamic Realty’s Chris Pennycook’s reply is succinct.
“I’m truly thankful for good health — I recently underwent major surgery and am starting to feel fully healthy again,” he said. “My energy is returning, and even though I’m in my twenty-ninth year as a realtor, I can’t imagine doing anything else. I feel re-energized, and love getting up every morning and going to work with the goal of helping people find the home that’s just right for them.”
Steve Gallagher of RE/MAX Performance Realty said he’s grateful for life’s little blessings.
“I’m super grateful for the health of my kids. We have three healthy, thriving children and it absolutely breaks my heart when I think of the struggles that some parents go through with time spent in the hospital, and no opportunity to celebrate the holidays.”
He added that Christmas is a time when people should take stock of just how fortunate they are to live in Canada.
“We have to take a step back and really appreciate what we have — things like access to good doctors, a roof over our heads and the ability to just go to the store and buy groceries are things that other people in other parts of the world don’t have. Being a REALTOR®, I have the freedom and ability to use my time to help others that have less, and I plan to do that working with the Rotary Club and the Children’s Hospital Foundation in 2013 and beyond.”