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Dogwood Ramblings

Our annual day of Thanksgiving is now behind us.  Believe me when I say that I was thankful just to get through the day.  It seems many in this area have had sinus/upper respiratory problems and now I can be counted among that number.  On the bright side of things the meal was easy to prepare – keeping everything virus free was another matter.  Didn’t dare cough or sneeze anywhere near the kitchen, used Lysol spray on every possible surface throughout the house and washed my hands until they were nearly raw.  The bright side!? – oh yes – Those coming here all brought side dishes, put all the food away after, did the dishes and allowed me to sit off to the side hoping the fever would break.

Randy’s son, Randy (Pooh) and family came for a visit later that afternoon.  It was difficult seeing the great- grandbabies and having to say hello and give love from a distance.  A lot of “air hugs” were given all day.

After our early dinner, Randy and Ivan and some others trimmed the hedges in front of the house, cleaned the gutters and then put up the Christmas lights.  Not as many lights as other years but enough to welcome family and friends, and to light the way for travelers.  After everyone went home our son, Ryan, called from California where they were having a family gathering and I got to phone visit with him and with his daughter Nakomi.  Ryan’s daughter, Shamika,  will make him a grandpa again shortly.  Randy called early Friday to make sure I made it through the night.

Ron also called Friday morning to check on this sick mother and to say that the Homeister Thanksgiving gathering at his home was a complete success.  Arlene prepared the basics and the many family members brought side dishes and helping hands.  Arlene’s sister Helen and her family drove down from Hannibal. Some wanted to say “hi!” to me and family but were discouraged from stopping by.   This bug doesn’t care who gets infected!

My sister turned 82 on Nov. 25th.  I phoned for her birthday and was pleasantly surprised.  She sounds so much better.  Dona and her family went to a restaurant for Thanksgiving.  She has been on two short shopping trips and has gained 14 pounds.  She is now awaiting new CAT scan and blood test results.

Did you succumb to the Black Thursday mania?  Have you been digesting every advertisement that tries to seduce you into buying those many things you don’t really need?  Do you really believe merchants have slashed their prices just for you with no profit margin?  Do your children absolutely have to have those special sneakers at over $100?  Do they absolutely have to have those costly telephones attached to their ears, the ones that allow them to text (our new national language??) every personal detail of your lives, just as they do on Face-book and Twitter for all the world to see?  It is so easy to use a credit card (and again and again) but then, the bills come due and your elation at new things, new toys, becomes depression.  I don’t have or need diamonds or jewels.  After all, how many of those can you wear at a time?  I’d much rather a visit, a hug, true displays of love.

Here are a few suggestions:   donate to a worthy cause; help at a food harvest; visit the elderly and perform a chore or two for them; pay down or pay off your credit card bills.  Make one or more of these suggestions a gift to your family.  Give a gift of yourself to the Christ Child.  After all, isn’t He the reason for the season?

Be well, have a good week – and here is a big “air hug” for you (          ).

PLEASANT RIDGE BAPTIST CHURCH from the desk of Jamey Herd: I hope everyone enjoyed the Dogwood History. Things are busy at Pleasant Ridge with plans for our annual Holiday dinner on December 1st at 2 PM.  Everyone is invited to join us in fellowship and a good meal. The church will be furnishing turkey and ham with everyone bringing in side dishes. Then on the evening of December 16th we will have our wacky gift exchange. Numbers are drawn and called to pick a gift from under the tree. This is always a lot of fun seeing who can keep the gift they pick. You can only have something taken from you three times then if you can get it back it is yours.  It is always fun seeing someone getting something meant for the opposite sex. Also plans are underway for a Christmas program put on by the children and some of the adults. Pat Williams has gotten the names of some of the nursing home residents from Ava and Seymour and they will be adopted by the church for Christmas gifts. Children’s Church is planning on going caroling at Ava and Seymour nursing homes.

This Monday is a cold, dark rainy day. We had to make a trip into Springfield for an appointment and to have our ATV serviced. Coming home just after entering Douglas County we almost had wild turkey for dinner. Three large turkeys flew across the road right in front of us and I thought they weren’t going to lift high enough to miss our truck.

The last few days’ people have been stopping to look and take pictures of the two Eagles that have been feeding on a calf we lost. We see them off and on through the year here. Seeing them in the air or sitting in a tree does not give you a true perspective of their large size.

On our way home we had to stop at the Ozark Wal-Mart to pick up a prescription. I ran into neighbors Linda Myers and Annie Goin. Linda and I only live about a mile apart but the only time I see her is in town. It is a shame we don’t take time to visit more often.

I hope everyone had a wonderful Thanksgiving. We traveled to Carl Junction to our daughter, Susan Doyle’s, home. Our youngest daughter and family from Towanda, Kansas also came for the day along with son Ron and family of Rogersville. We enjoyed a wonderful meal and being with the kids and grandkids.

Till next week stay warm and count your blessings. We have so much more than a lot of people around the country and world. God Bless.

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