The Valley seems to be getting the Christmas Spirit, even though at this a.m. (Tuesday) it seems more like a time for celebrating the 4th of July. Driving through the City though, stores are very festive and many homes are elaborately decorated. Talked to CofC Manager Bonnie Cox yesterday and she reports that even though there are many beautifully decorations in the Valley she has had very few businesses or homes enter the annual Christmas Lighting Contest.
If you’ve decorated, call Bonnie at 473-1122 and enter. prizes are first, $100; second, $75; and third, $50 in each category. If you don’t want the prize, consider donating the money to a favorite charity—you’ll have the excitement of winning and helping someone less fortunate at the same time. Judging is by out-of-town judges, so it will be as fair as possible.
We know Christmas is drawing near when we settle down to get the Christmas greeting section together. I’ve been calling merchants to okay their ads for the past week or so. This is always an enjoyable chore—I get to visit, via phone, with most of the business owners, managers, etc. in the Valley. While tending to business, I also get to exchange a personal seasonal greeting and sometimes even catch up on a little family news. I always enjoy hearing about their children, spouses and other family members, but in turn they have to hear about Celeste and Jim. The Valley is a family and most of us do consider everyone important.
Back to ads in the Christmas section—I’ve tried to reach each one of you, but if I’ve missed you and you want an ad just call before Friday and we’ll get you in.
Also included in this section will be pictures from Christmas events and letters to Santa, so children you’d better get those written and to the Herald Office (we’ll send them on to Santa) or mailed.
Had not seen Mom in a couple of weeks, so early Saturday morning it was off to Panola County to see what was going on. The road kill of the day on the Pope/Water Valley Road was squirrels. At least a half-dozen or so of these little critter had not made it to the other side of the road and I had to brake for several. In addition to these were the usual rabbits, armadillo, ‘possums, turtles, etc. Didn’t see any deer though—dead or alive—which is unusual. From the hunters in our family it’s not because they’re killing them all. They’ve reported only one or two scores and as yet I’ve not seen any venison on the table. We’re still eating my (or rather Piggly Wiggly’s) beef, pork and chicken.
Talk at the dinner table was the price of LP Gas. Both Mom (who was booked) and Carolyn and Bo who were not, reported what I think are unreasonable prices. My tank is completely empty and it may stay that way. I still have a woodburning stove and an open fireplace, and they just may be put back into use. I have twelve acres of wood and the boys know how to use a chainsaw—I may have to learn. Fuel for the van is not much better, even though we are still a few cents under most of the surrounding area. Wonder how long it would take to get to Pope and Courtland in a buggy or on my bicycle? Those hills are pretty steep.
Arrived home Saturday night and flipped on the weather news. I’d watched the van temp all the way and it was from 74 to 78—a record high. In comparison the weatherman says that last year on that date we had a record low—14 degrees. For some reason I don’t remember this. Guess it didn’t stay down long enough for it to register for me.
At Woodland Hills Sunday night we enjoyed a program by former Vallian Kathryn Ann Surrette Warren and her son, Glenn, of Senatobia. They had been on missions trips to Muldova, which is the featured country for Southern Baptist’s Lottie Moon Christmas Mission Offering this year.
Ann and Glenn stayed in homes of citizens of the country, while conducting Bible Studies, helping with construction projects, and other mission endeavors. They reported that these people live on very little, growing most of their food, but are so happy. We have so much and so many of us are not content. Following the program we were treated to a fellowship, featuring food from this country. It was delicious. I especially liked the soup, fresh cucumbers, green onions and tomatoes, and a couple kinds of cornbread. There were also several fruit desserts, which I didn’t leave room for, but they looked delicious. Our thanks to Ann and Glenn for their visit.
One member of the MS Ag Museum Print Shop Team got to spend some time there last week—unfortunately Jimmie and I couldn’t not go. We may all get to go down sometimes in January—just to have fun and clean and print a bit. Going was T. J. Ray from Oxford and he reported a busy visit—I’m sure it was since he was the only regular member of the team there. He did have a couple of young folks, who have expressed interest in this project, come by and help out. With his note telling of last week’s Museum excursion, came several tidbits that are either cute or encouraging. So many expressed enjoying Jim’s contribution last week, that I’ll share one form T. J.’s packet.
Angels Explained By Children
•Theologians, heretofore, have overlooked a valuable resource to help explain the purpose of angels: children. Here are some of their insights:
•I only know the names of two angels, Hark and Harold. —Gregory, 5.
•Everybody’s got it all wrong. Angels don’t wear halos anymore. I forget why, but scientists are working on it. —Olive, 9.
•It’s not easy to become an angel! First, you die. Then you go to heaven, and then there’s still the flight training to go through. And then you got to agree to wear those angel clothes. —Matthew, 9.
•Angels work for God and watch over kids when God has to go do something else. —Mitchell, 7.
•My guardian angel helps me with math, but he’s not much good for science. —Henry, 8.
•Angels don’t eat, but they drink milk from Holy Cows! —Jack, 6.
•Angels talk all the way while they’re flying you up to heaven. The main subject is where you went wrong before you got dead. —Daniel, 9.
•When an angel gets mad, he takes a deep breath and counts to ten. And when he lets out his breath, somewhere there’s a tornado. —Reagan, 10.
•Angels have a lot to do and they keep very busy. If you lose a tooth, an angel comes in through your window and leaves money under your pillow. Then when it gets cold, angels go north for the winter. —Sara, 6.
•Angels live in cloud houses made by God and His Son, who’s a very good carpenter. —Jared, 8.
•All angels are girls because they gotta wear dresses and boys didn’t go for it. —Antonio, 9.
•My angel is my grandma who died last year. She got a big head start on helping me while she was still down here on earth. —Katelynn, 9.
•Some of the angels are in charge of helping heal sick animals and pets. And if they don’t make the animals get better, they help the child get over it. —Vicki, 8.
•What I don’t get about angels is why, when someone is in love, they shoot arrows at them. —Sarah, 7.
Talked to Jim several times last week and he and Celeste, as always, are very busy during this holiday season. Celeste is playing with the Roswell Symphony for a couple of weekend and Jim was principal tubist with the El Paso Symphony last weekend. He usually comes in to play when they need a second tuba, but due to the sudden death of the principal player, he was pressed into service. I know this was a very emotional event, since they were friends, colleagues and very close to the same age. The Christmas Concert always features a prominent guest artist and Jim says this year’s guest, a contemporary gospel musician, Michael Smith (I think), was excellent. Says he’s another Bill Gaither.
Celeste and Jim will be here for Christmas—just a couple of weeks away.
In closing I’ll report a miracle.
Had gotten a sweeper-vac to care for the new hardwood floors. This thing came in pieces with instructions for assembly. Finally found the English version and actually read, understood, and got it assembled. It required hanging for a 24-hour battery charging. Was not a hook or nail in any of my walls close enough to an outlet. So, I found a long nail and my trusty hammer. Pounded that nail into some of Ed’s expertly finished paneling. Used only one nail—didn’t even bend it— and did not put a single dent into the paneling. Now that’s a miracle. Most of you know that I need a pound of nails to get one in and the surface I’m nailing into is always completely battered. I usually use a screw, but couldn’t find my drill. Guess God hid it, so I’d see that He’d given me a new talent. Don’t think you contractors or handymen have to worry though—I’m sure He didn’t provide that much talent.