It's Celeste's Turn column: A tale of two calendars

The following is an opinion column written by an Echo Press editorial staff member. It does not necessarily reflect the views of the Echo Press.

This is the front of one of the calendars I received as a Christmas gift from my husband.
Celeste Edenloff / Alexandria Echo Press
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Being a person who writes for a living, one would think that punctuation would be a big deal and something I would pay special attention to.

Apparently not.

Every year for the last few years as a Christmas present, my husband, Al, has bought me an inspirational desk calendar related to running. Because I have received a few of them, some of the messages have been repetitive.

So this year, I thought I would be helpful and give him some suggestions for different inspirational calendars.

I started to research some online and found quite a few that I really liked.


There was one with 365 happy notes. There was another about seizing the day. Another one was filled with optimistic quotes.

I am truly a quote girl and probably love them more than the average person. Maybe it’s because I write for a living, but I love words and how, when strung together just right, they can convey so much or hold so much meaning.

I follow several quote producing accounts on Instagram, like Good Vibes with Words. Some of the quotes are so simple, but yet there is so much power behind the words. Sometimes the quotes make me smile and make my heart happy, like one I read earlier this week – “Maybe, a soulmate is a best friend who makes you love yourself more.”

Other times, the quotes hit harder than expected and make me think about my life – the good, the bad, the ugly and everything in between. I read one on Monday that said, “So many people from your past know a version of you that no longer exists anymore. Growth is beautiful.”

Anyway, back to the calendar.

After finding a few I really liked, I sent the links to Al so he could choose which one he thought was best.

On Christmas Day, when it was just the two of us at home, we exchanged our presents.

Alexandria School Board member Maureen Eigen told Laura Knudsen, another school board member, that her approach was not helpful.

He set two of them in front of me and with this smirky kind of smile, he told me which one I should open first.


I opened it and it was one of the calendars I had picked out. I was super excited. I smiled at him, thanked him and told him I loved it. However, he still kind of had this smirky smile/weird look on his face.

He told me to look at the calendar. I did. It said, “Never Give Up.” He told me to read it again.

I did and that is when I started laughing really, really hard. The calendar did in fact say, “Never Give Up,” but I finally noticed the punctuation. I finally realized where the periods were placed.

The calendar actually said, “Never. Give Up.” Yes. Never. Period. Give Up. Period.

At the bottom of the calendar, which apparently I didn’t pay any attention to either, it said “daily unspirational quotes.”

We both got a big laugh out of this.

Best part is, my husband didn’t realize it was uninspiring until after he bought it.

Guess what the second gift was that he had me open? You got it, a real, true inspirational calendar called, “Today is going to be a great day!” It is filled with 365 days of words to inspire.


This is the front of the other calendar I received as a Christmas present from my husband.
Celeste Edenloff / Alexandria Echo Press

As I write this, I look over and read my uninspiring calendar for the day and start chuckling to myself.

It reads, “Inspirational quotes only exist to distract you from the reality that nothing matters.”

As much as I disagree with it, it was good for a laugh.

And it is much different than my other calendar, “You cannot value dreams according to their coming true. The real value is stirring within us the will to aspire.”

Regardless, I do have to admit I am not mad about having two different calendars. I actually really like both of them!

“It’s Our Turn” is a weekly column that rotates among members of the Echo Press editorial staff.

Photo of Celeste Edenloff
Celeste Edenloff

Celeste Edenloff is the special projects editor and a reporter for the Alexandria Echo Press. She has lived in the Alexandria Lakes Area since 1997. She first worked for the Echo Press as a reporter from 1999 to 2011, and returned in 2016 to once again report on the community she calls home.
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