This morning as I was eating my artificial breakfast -- orange juice from concentrate, turkey bacon, Egg Beaters, low carb toast with no-cholesterol butter substitute and decaf coffee -- I thought of my grandmother.
She lived on a farm, ate fresh eggs, salt pork, homemade bread slathered with butter she churned herself, and drank real coffee -- lots of it -- with real cream every day. She lived to be 85 years old. Oh, for the good old days!
December -- the month of short days and long, cold nights. And, have we ever had cold nights lately. The other morning, in the middle of our recent cold snap, both our thermometers, one on the north and the other on the west side of our house, showed 8.6 degrees.
The thermometers are accurate. We live in a micro-climate in north Payson where it usually is cooler -- or colder, as the case may be -- than the official temperature.
This was the coldest temperature we've had since moving here more than six years ago. I guess I shouldn't complain, though, when we lived in Wisconsin, the coldest temperature we had was minus 42 degrees!
December is Hi Neighbor, Stress-Free Family Holiday and Read-a-New-Book Month. Pearl Harbor Day was Dec. 7. If you were alive then, you undoubtedly remember where you were and what you were doing at the moment the terrible news came over the radio.
Civil Aviation Day, and Hanukkah began at sundown on this day also. The 12th is Poinsettia Day, the 13th, Ice Cream and Violins Day (a rather unlikely combination, don't you think?). The 21st is the winter solstice.
Those of you who have lived here for a while will remember Lee and Joe Pretsch, longtime Paysonites who moved to Kona, Hawaii a couple years ago.
Lee was named Woman of the Year in the late 1990s for her work on behalf of the disabled and veterans.
Both Lee and Joe were verynvolved in patriotic activities and Joe could be found hanging flags from lightpoles on numerous occasions. It will be no surprise to hear that they are carrying on theradition in their new home.
To quote from a recent letter: "... we couldn't let Veterans Day go by without a celebration. Prior to our arrival, the only program here was a ceremony at the Veterans' Cemetery, but after I told them that Veterans Day is a time to say ‘thank you for serving', they gave us the go-ahead to plan something. We ended up serving a free luncheon to more than 300 people (all donated food from our local restaurants) and a nice patriotic program ..."
Congratulations, Lee and Joe, keep up the good work. (Lee added that she reads the Payson Roundup on the computer to keep in touch with what is happening here).
Payson Senior Center
December's Birthday Bash will be held at noon Wednesday, Dec. 15 in the center's dining room, 514 W. Main St. The lunch menu is meatloaf, mashed potatoes, mixed vegetable, dinner roll, birthday cake and beverage. Be sure to put your name in the Birthday Barrel in the lobby to be eligible for a gift drawing.
A holiday party is planned foroon, Wednesday, Dec. 22 in the dining room. Entertainment will be provided by Trouble in Paradise.he center will be closed Dec. 23 and 24 for Christmas; Dec. 30 and 31 for New Year's.
The Senior Thrift Store, 512 W. Main St,, still has a good selection of Christmas decorations as well as gift items, at very reasonable prices. The store is open from 9:30 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday, until 3 p.m. Saturday. It will remain open Dec. 23, but will be closed the Dec. 24 and 25. For New Year's, the store will be open Dec. 30 and 31, but closed New Year's Day.
Payson Regional Senior Circle
No time for holiday baking? Not to worry -- the Senior Circle will hold a bake sale at Payson Regional Medical Center from 9 a.m. to 3 p.m. Friday, Dec. 17. You'll be able to stock up on homemadehristmasookies, cakes and other entertainment necessities. The Senior Circle, 215 N. Beeline Highway, will be closedrom Dec. 18 until Jan. 3 "to give our hard working volunteers someell deserved time off" according to Director Cory Houghton.
Mary Spencer was named Volunteer of the Year for 2004 at the annual volunteer banquet held Nov. 19.
The Senior Circle is partnering with Cathedralealth Services to offer preventativeealth screenings to low income seniors at no cost.
The service is available to persons over 60 years of age with a monthly income of less than $1,250 for singles, or $2,500 for joint income.
Screenings will be done for heart, stroke, abdominal aortic aneurysm, pulmonary function, ankle brachial test, diabetes, cholesterol, blood pressure and pulse rate. The tests will be held at the Senior Circle on Dec. 22 and 23 and Jan. 3 and 4. Call (800) 770-0240 to schedule an appointment.
The Senior Circle will offer chaplaincy classes to area pastors or lay pastors beginning Dec. 10. For more information, call Cory Houghton at (928) 472-1275.
The Pine/Strawberry Senior Center will be closed for Christmas and New Year's holidays from Dec. 23 until Jan. 3. The Pine Thrift Store willlose Dec. 25 and will reopen Dec. 29. There will be a sale on all winter clothes Jan. through 8.
Here's your Christmas smile:If you have a fear of Santa, what is your condition called?Claustrophobia.