It Looks Like Pine Will Have A White Christmas

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Jodee Smith/Roundup

This snowman was created recently when more than 5 inches of snow fell in the Pine Strawberry area.

Well it looks like we just may have a white Christmas after all!

As I write on Tuesday morning, the snow continues to fall and it looks as if we are about to boost our annual moisture stats drastically.

We are cozying up with the fireplace blazing away and mugs of hot cocoa. Fortunately, the hill next to our property suffices as a perfect sled zone, so we don’t have to venture far. My daughters just finished the first snowman of the season. And since I’ve been feeling “too busy” lately with all of the holiday happenings, it is a perfect excuse to drop everything, stay home, and enjoy puzzles, a large pot of soup, Christmas cookie baking, and family! Hope everyone is keeping safe and warm.

Strawberry’s Elite

Strawberry’s Elite just held its annual Christmas party to celebrate another year of helping the people of Strawberry and Pine. The group recently purchased warm clothing for 26 local children and are busy preparing gifts for the seniors at the Pine Strawberry Food Bank.

Strawberry’s Elite was started in 1992 by a group of people who knew that there were children in our communities who did not have warm, winter clothing, families without wood for their stoves and/or food in their pantries, and others who have suffered terribly when they experienced unexpected losses.

One of the group’s ongoing services is providing a bank for the Pine-Strawberry School cafeteria to help feed children who can’t afford lunch, or for those who have forgotten their lunches.

They have given more than $20,000 to various causes since 1993. Most of the costs are covered through periodic fund-raisers including an annual steak fry, and generous donations from folks in the community.

Strawberry’s Elite meets at 6:30 p.m. on the first Thursday of each month at the Senior Center Dining Room.

New members are always welcome and the only requirements necessary are that you are either a resident or own property in Pine or Strawberry and have an interest in helping the community.

If you would like to know more about the group, call Vice President Sheri Earp at (928) 476-3655.

Library to show movies

The Isabelle Hunt Memorial Library will show movies on two Fridays over Christmas vacation for children who are off school for the holidays. “Wall-E” will be featured at 11 a.m. Dec. 26, followed by “Space Chimps” at 11 a.m. on Jan. 2. Both shows are rated “G.”

The new youth coordinator at the library, Junetta Clifford, has lots of fun, future events planned for the kids in Pine and Strawberry.

Each Wednesday, children between the ages of 2 and 5 are invited to attend the Pre-School Story Time activities from 10:15 a.m. to 11:15 a.m. January’s theme is “winter” (appropriate!).

The children will read books about animals, snowmen, food, clothing and weather charts all relating to winter. They will also learn songs and rhymes, plus make arts and crafts like snowflake pictures.

Junetta also hosts an after-school activity program at the Pine-Strawberry Elementary School between 2:30 p.m. and 3:15 p.m. on Thursdays.

In addition to reading a variety of books with winter themes, the children will learn about some great American leaders. Other activities include an indoor Olympic game, making casts of animal tracks and studying animal behavior in the winter.

Art classes for children

Robyn Bossert will be teaching free art classes for home-schooled children from 12:30 p.m. until 2 p.m beginning Thursday, Jan. 15 at the library activity room.

The six classes will take place every other week. Enrollment is limited to 20 children and is on a first-come, first-served basis. To register, please call the library at (928) 476-3678.

The Pine Strawberry community will be hosting a blood drive from 10 a.m. to 6 p.m., Jan. 20 at the First Baptist Church in Pine. The Strawberry Patchers have given a bed-size quilt as a raffle prize open to all donors. Mark your calendars early!

I would like to extend my condolence to the family of Bruce Thompson who passed away on Dec. 11.

More than 120 people attended a Celebration of Life gathering on the following Sunday. The event had been planned for Bruce when it was discovered that he had cancer, in hopes that he would be able to meet with friends and family one last time, however it was not to be.

Bruce was president of the Senior Citizens Affairs Foundation (SCAF) for many years, often working 40 or more hours a week taking care of the organization’s needs. He was voted Volunteer of the Year in 2005 for his many hours of service.

Even at his passing, he showed his generous nature by donating his four-wheel drive pickup truck to SCAF’s Meals on Wheels program. The senior dining room has been re-named the Bruce Thompson Senior Dining Hall in honor of this remarkable man.

I sincerely hope that your holidays are filled with special memories from times past as well as the joy of present blessings.

Merry Christmas!

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