“What can you do with a general, when he stops being a general?  Oh, what can you do with a general who retires?”  ~ from the movie White Christmas.


The end of another year is approaching, and Christmas is almost upon us.


One of my most cherished family Christmas traditions is watching the 1954 movie White Christmas starring Bing Crosby, Danny Kaye, Rosemary Clooney, and Betty Haynes.


The movie is a heartwarming story filled with iconic songs like “I’m dreaming of a White Christmas.”


The whole theme of the movie revolves around best friends Bob Wallace and Phil Davis, who meet as fellow soldiers during World War II and become famous show business entertainers.


As fate would have it, they are booked to perform at a ski lodge, where they happen upon their former General. However, the General is not adjusting well to civilian life.


His rank and impressive service record are not helping him as his hotel business begins to falter.


Without ruining the movie, I can share that Wallace and Davis set off to help the General revive his business and, in the process, show him that his impact as a leader during the war is not forgotten.


The message I take away from the movie every time I watch is that the best gifts are often not things; they are the bonds we form through shared experiences.


Chances are, in five years, it won’t be the fancy game or the sharp shirt you remember getting for Christmas; it will be the shared experiences and that sense that you have people in your life who care about you that will stick in the memory.


The Okanagan Military Tattoo reminds me of White Christmas because both shows honour service men and women through song and dance.


Just like how the General was honoured on White Christmas, service men and women in the audience are recognized and reminded that their service has not been forgotten.


So, before shopping for odds and ends to fill stockings, consider getting a gift that will create treasured memories for a friend or family member who has served.


Take them to the Okanagan Military Tattoo and enjoy watching them be acknowledged and appreciated for their service.


Okanagan Military Tattoo is happening July 29th & 30th at Kal Tire Place in Vernon, BC.  We look forward to seeing you there!