5 min read



⭐️ A Special Quote To Start Your Week: 

"I know God's plan is not my plan but HE gives me the strength to get through each day."

David Contreras, on the passing of his wife, Grace Contreras, mom of five and SCOOP member.

Meet Grace, who supported SmartHER News in numerous ways – from following SHN on social media to joining our SCOOP community. She believed in Curiosity over Commentary and proudly wore our gear to show it. A mother of five, Grace participated in the PTA and served as an active member of her church.

This summer as Grace returned with her family from a road trip, an alleged drunk driver hit and killed Grace, and injured her two youngest daughters. We have corresponded with Grace’s husband, David, who gave us permission to share her story (you will hear Jenna speak about Grace's story during the final ten minutes of our special report below).

We wanted to share the photos of Grace and her family above, plus, for those who may want to contribute, provide a link to the family’s GoFundMe page. The news is personal. Grace reflects the heroism, bravery, goodness and faith that surrounds us everyday – stories in our own communities that matter, stories that need to be shared. We feel honored to share Grace's story as a tribute to her, her family, and a tribute to our community, which she helped us build.


Come join us for our Special Report: Watch by clicking the link above or HERE. You can also listen to our podcast using direct download (also available on podcast platforms everywhere).

We loved hearing from you! Thank you to Alex, Jessika, Robyn, Stephanie, Holly and so many others for submitting your questions. Keep 'em coming! We would love to answer more of your questions in the New Year! Email us: SCOOP@SmartHERNews.com


Monday: Supreme Court Justice Sandra Day O’Connor (the first woman to serve on the United States Supreme Court), who passed away earlier this month at the age of 93, will lie in repose at the Supreme Court prior to her funeral at Washington, D.C.’s National Cathedral on Tuesday. Meanwhile in Israel, U.S. Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin arrived in Tel Aviv amida multiday trip to the Middle East …" Austin – who ranks among top military leaders in the U.S. – has met with Israeli officials, discussing both the U.S.’s support for the country while also raising concerns about Israel's ongoing strategy and civilian casualties in Gaza.  

Tuesday: Planning to order or ship things in time for Christmas? Check out this link for USPS, FedEx, UPS, and Amazon deadlines occurring throughout the week.

Thursday: The Winter Solstice – AKA the first day of winter and shortest day of the year in terms of daylight.

Saturday: The beloved Christmas poem, “‘Twas the Night Before Christmas,” was published on this day exactly 200 years ago. While the mystery over who penned this famous poem swirled for years, the impact of the lyrical writing remains undeniable. Historian and author Pamela McColl spent ten years researching the poem's origins and global impact, documenting her findings in her book, "Twas the Night: The Art and History of the Classic Christmas Poem." In the interview below, Pam joins us to share incredible insight about the curious origins of the poem (including the party-filled streets of New York City) and why she believes this beloved Christmas story has such incredible lasting power. Available on podcast later this week but we wanted to give you a sneak peek!

Sunday: Christmas Eve! 🎄

Monday: Christmas Day! On this day in 1776, just months after the Founding Fathers signed the Declaration of Independence, Gen. George Washington made a risky decision to cross the Delaware River on Christmas night in order to surprise (and eventually defeat) British forces. The victory changed the early course of the American Revolution – and, arguably, America’s fate.  

"Washington Crossing the Delaware" by Emanuel Leutze, 1851. 📸: The Metropolitan Museum of Art


75 Pounds of Sugar, 35 Pounds of Flour, 10 Pounds of Butter, 10 Pounds of Cinnamon

Some of the ingredients in this year’s gingerbread house replica of the U.S. Capitol building. Constructed by the House of Representative’s food services provider, this latest gingerbread house marks an annual holiday tradition on Capitol Hill.  

📸: @housecreativeservices on Instagram

Something Special:

"It’s amazing, it’s absolutely amazing.” 

Lauren Bellantoni, viewing Christmas lights at a home in Union Vale, New York. The home sets itself apart holding a world record for the most lights on display on a residential property, with more than 720,000 shining bright this year. The family-run light show attracts around 60,000 people per year – while the town itself has a population of 4,600 people. Did You Know? Hiring a professional to put up holiday lights costs an average of $420.  

The Gay family’s home, located about an hour and a half north from New York City. The family programs the lights to 255 songs that play via a local radio station. Since 2011, the family says they have collected $656,000 for various charitiesas people come to view their holiday display. 📸: The New York Times

Wishing you and your family a beautiful holiday season. Thank you for making this year so special and for your incredible support of SmartHER News.

We’ll see you in the New Year with a special report!

With love and Grace in our hearts,
Jenna & the Team at SmartHER News

This post is for paying subscribers only