Relocate to Wisconsin : There's an Empty Chair at the Christmas Dinner Table....

There's an Empty Chair at the Christmas Dinner Table....

        Many people reading this post may know someone who is spending this Christmas with one less person  at Christmas  dinner.  This year was the year that they lost a parent, sibling, spouse....someone who always made that holiday special....added their humor, said grace before the meal, always carved Empty chairthe meat, made the toast to the season....and that voice is now silent.  The first was is the worst one....tears replace toasts...the usual dinner chatter seems more quiet.....there is a void in the usual family celebration.  When there is  less of a family....or none at is difficult to celebrate.

     We know that the people who read this post have big hearts and are gentle, kind, giving people.  Open your heart....fill that empty chair with someone who has lost family and may be alone during the holiday season. Know that this is one of the greatest gifts you can give,....a sharing of yourself.  You may encounter some resistance at first....understand that person doesn't want to feel  as though they are the intruder on an  otherwise "family only" gathering. Assure them they are not....encourage them...welcome them warmly.  Your kind gesture will warm their heart .....and yours in the very real spirit of this season of giving.

      This has been a holiday spirit post brought to you by Sally K. & David L.  Hanson, Broker Associates with Keller Williams Realty honored to be giving professional real estate services in southeastern Wisconsin.

Sally K. & David L. Hanson, ABR, CDPE, CSS, e-Pro,ILHM, REDS

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Comment balloon 33 commentsSally K. & David L. Hanson • December 22 2017 02:58AM


That would be a wonderful way to include someone who would otherwise be alone! 

Posted by Kat Palmiotti, The House Kat (Grand Lux Realty, 914-419-0270, 6 months ago

Morning Sally.

We've actually done this in the past.  Like you said most are reluctant to attend. Those who have seemed to have a great time.

Posted by James Dray, Exceptional Agents, Outstanding Results (Fathom Realty AR LLC) 6 months ago

What an encouraging thought Sally and David. It can be a lonely time for some...

Posted by Lawrence "Larry" & Sheila Agranoff. Cell: 631-805-4400, Long Island Condo & Home Sale Specialists (The Top Team @ Charles Rutenberg Realty 255 Executive Dr, Plainview NY 11803) 6 months ago

Sally K. & David L. Hanson an especially nice post for many who do feel like intruding on other families... I think making that offer and meaning it is the most important thing you can do around the holidays.

Posted by Ginny Gorman, Homes for Sale in North Kingstown RI and beyond (RI Real Estate Services ~ 401-529-7849~ RI Waterfront Real Estate) 6 months ago

Good morning Sally and David. Luckily this year no empty chairs. Like most, we have had that situation in the past. And we filled the chair! Enjoy your day!

Posted by Wayne Martin, Real Estate Broker (Wayne M Martin) 6 months ago

Having been through that empty chair experience, myself, Sally and David... I know how difficult it is. And then, in my mind and emotions, there are some empty chairs that are never filled even if they are physically filled.

Posted by Nina Hollander, Your Charlotte/Ballantyne/Waxhaw/Fort Mill Realtor (RE/MAX Executive | Charlotte, NC) 6 months ago

No empty chairs here either this year, but what a great idea.

Posted by Steve Clay (Keller Williams Cape Cod and the Islands) 6 months ago

Even if the person didn't join us for Christmas, I think we all know of someone that was around last year and not this year and we will certainly remember them a little more around this time of the year.

Posted by Brian England, MBA, GRI, REALTOR® Real Estate in East Valley AZ (Arizona Focus Realty) 6 months ago

Good morning Sally and David.  This is a wonderful idea that we should all follow.

Posted by Gabe Sanders, Stuart Florida Real Estate (Real Estate of Florida specializing in Martin County Residential Homes, Condos and Land Sales) 6 months ago

Oh how I love your big heart, Sally!

We almost always have someone join us at Christmas who doesn't have family and no place to go for dinner. Our family treats them like family, no matter who it is. We don't fill their voids but, we certainly can make them smile and feel loved during this incredibly tough time.

Posted by Debe Maxwell, CRS, Charlotte Homes for Sale - Charlotte Neighborhoods ( | The Maxwell House Group | RE/MAX Executive | (704) 491-3310) 6 months ago

This always reminds me of the first Christmas withour dad. Mom wanted the same Christmas around the tree but we could help staring at the empty chair. It is a good thing to change the routine.

Posted by Joe Pryor, REALTOR® - Oklahoma Investment Properties (The Virtual Real Estate Team) 6 months ago

Good morning Sally and David. This is a thoughtful and lovely post. Merry Christmas.

Posted by Sheila Anderson, The Real Estate Whisperer Who Listens 732-715-1133 (Referral Group Incorporated) 6 months ago

This is a wonderful suggestion to share.

Enjoy the holidays.

Posted by Roy Kelley, Roy and Dolores Kelley Photographs (Realty Group Referrals) 6 months ago

Sally and David- absolutely love this post!!!   I learned from my Grandmother...there was always room for more and she did invite everyone.  It's the right thing to do. 

Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 6 months ago

Sally: Such a wonderfully thoughtful way to celebrate Christmas. You are right, so many are in need of love and support during this time of year.

Posted by Anita Clark, Realtor - Homes for Sale in Warner Robins GA (ColdwellBanker SSK Realtors ~ 478.960.8055) 6 months ago

Sally and David my wife and I were at a wake last night for the brother of one of my wife's co-workers.  She lost her mother at the beginning of this year, and now her brother at the end of the year.  This Christmas will be a very tough one.

Posted by George Souto, Your Connecticut Mortgage Expert (George Souto NMLS #65149 FHA, CHFA, VA Mortgages) 6 months ago

Sally you are so right it is never easy but the first one is hard indeed, and trying to coax  them to come is hard too, we know a few, Diane's coworker to name one of the top of the list...Endre

Posted by Endre Barath, Jr., Realtor - Los Angeles Home Sales 310.486.1002 (Berkshire Hathaway HomeServices) 6 months ago


Posted by Kathy Streib, Home Stager - Palm Beach County,FL -561-914-6224 (Room Service Home Staging) 6 months ago

Good morning on this beautiful Chritmas Eve day. Lovely post and it did touch my heart

Posted by Marco Giancola, Realtor (305)608-1922, Miami Beach Florida (Beachfront Realty) 6 months ago

Good morning Sally and David - such heart felt sentiments.  Yes there are many with an empty seat.  Giving a gift of triendship to a lonely person is a wonderful way to brighten everyones Christmas.

Posted by Grant Schneider, Your Coach Helping You Create Successful Outcomes (Performance Development Strategies) 6 months ago

Good morning Sally K. & David L. Hanson ,

I'm not sure how I missed this post this week other than I've been so busy and haven't played in the rain like always. So glad Kathy Streib featured this post in her "Ah Ha" moments for the week. This year we have added another teenager to the table that is a friend of one of my grandsons. His folks just moved to CA and its his senior year..tough time to move. He is staying at my grandsons house until he graduates and won't be going home for Christmas. We are excited to have him and know he will have a good time.

Posted by Dorie Dillard, Serving Buyers & Sellers in NW Austin Real Estate (Coldwell Banker United Realtors® ~ 512.346.1799) 6 months ago

S & D, that is a great idea. I can think of a dozen people who lost a close member this year. This would be a wonderful way to help them deal with the process of healing and moving forward. 

Posted by Mike Cooper, Your Winchester, VA Real Estate Sales Pro (Cornerstone Business Group Inc) 6 months ago

I see that Kathy highlighted your post this week....I am glad I didnt miss it!  Very thoughtful post

Posted by Kristin Johnston - REALTOR®, Giving Back With Each Home Sold! (RE/MAX Realty Center ) 6 months ago

What a beautiful message! Losing loved ones this time of year is especially difficult. 

Posted by Sharon Tara, New Hampshire Home Stager (Sharon Tara Transformations) 6 months ago

Actually, I filled that chair!  My girlfriend invited a bunch of us to her home.  If she hadn't she'd need to fill that empty chair.  So the void was filled and everyone had a wonderful time.  Very thoughtful post!  

Posted by Jan Green, HomeSmart Elite Group, REALTOR®, EcoBroker, GREEN (Value Added Service, 602-620-2699) 6 months ago

Sally K. & David L. Hanson It's always hard to remember those we've lost.  Your post is so kind.  At this stage with all the loss, friends become family.  I hope you enjoyed your Christmas.

Posted by Elyse Berman, PA, Boca Raton FL - (561) 716-7824 - CRS, ABR, GRI (Best Connections Realty, Inc.) 6 months ago

Very thoughtful way to remember loved ones.  As I get older the number of chairs grow!

Posted by Gary L. Waters, Broker Owner, Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC, ... a small office, delivering big service! (Waters Realty of Brevard, LLC) 6 months ago

Beautiful, thoughtful post! I am glad Kathy featured it!

Posted by Steffy Hristova, Tempe AZ Realtor - Your Home Close to Your Work! (HomeSmart Elite Group Tempe AZ Tel: 480-966-9353) 6 months ago

Sally and David

You are both so thoughtful and caring. I found myself thinking all through Christmas about all the people here in California who lost their homes, and everything else, in the fires.


Posted by Jeff Dowler, CRS, The Southern California Relocation Dude - Carlsbad (Solutions Real Estate ) 6 months ago

 Sally K. & David L. Hanson    what a great message to share. 

My wife and I have long embraced this idea.

This year we had 5 people share our table. They had no one to be with but had a great day as we joined together.

Thank you so much for spreading the message.

Posted by John Wiley, Lee County, FL Real Estate GRI, SRES,GREEN,PSA (Right Move Real Estate Group- EXP Realty) 6 months ago


My husband and I have a dear neighbor, a man who is very proud and doesn't want to burden anyone. I love him and invited him over Christmas Day (I knew he'd be alone). He called us that day and said, "I don't feel well", so how can you push someone when they use that excuse? I put a "care package" together, and marched on over and gave it all to him. He didn't want to come over because he had nothing to give us. I get it. But, he also told me "You were the first". When I asked him what he meant, he said, "No one has called or stopped by, you were the first and you two are the best neighbors I've ever had". Does it get any better than that? He gave me much more than I gave him. A heart full of joy!! 

Posted by Gayle Rich-Boxman Fishhawk Lake Real Estate, "Your Local Expert!" 503-755-2905 (John L Scott Market Center) 6 months ago

Sometimes the best gift one can give is the gift of companionship. Great message and post. Thank you for sharing!

Posted by Corey Martin, Real Estate and Management Solutions (Martin Presence Group) 6 months ago

What a beautiful sentiment, Sally K. & David L. Hanson.  Your message serves both as a good reminder and inspiration. 

You're one very nice human being, Sally ...


Posted by Gene Mundt, IL/WI Mortgage Originator - FHA/VA/Conv/Jumbo/Portfolio/Refi, 708.921.6331 - 40+ yrs experience (NMLS #216987, IL Lic. 031.0006220, WI Licensed. APMC NMLS #175656) 6 months ago