Growing up in Northern Wisconsin, the Januarys of my childhood were snow-filled and cold.
Frigid days and below zero nights shrunk the woodpile alarmingly, for we relied solely on firewoodor heat and cooking.
The best place in the house to be was next to the cookstove in the kitchen, from which usuallyrifted mouth-watering scents -- perhaps a venison roast smothered in onions, a pot of baked beans, or best of all, Mom's homemade bread.
We could devour a whole loaf still warm from the oven, slathered with butter from Grandma's churn, and if the previous summer had been a good one,opped withpple butter or blackberry jam.
Our vegetables consisted of home-canned carrots, tomatoes and green beans, and what seemed like an endless supply of rutabagas, which I despised. There were no supermarkets filled with aisles of exotic fruits and vegetables in those days! The A & P grocery store in the nearest town, six miles away, usually had fresh oranges for Christmas and what a treat that was.
Our entertainments were simple, too; making snowmen, skating if the ice was not covered with snow, on double runner skates strapped tour boot bottoms.
Bird watching from the kitchen window -- no fancyunflower or thistle seeds, our birdsad leftover crumbs, suet and whatever else didn't get eaten in the house.
There were books to read borrowed from our one-room schoolhouse, and we listened to the radio in the evenings. Except for the morning news report from Minneapolis, we were not allowed to play the radio in the daytime.
Life was harder then, but we were happy. Sometimes I feel sorry for children today who have so many material things, but don't appreciate life's simple pleasures.
"The Tale of Two Rivers: Pioneer Settlement in Arizona" by Stanley Brown, former Town ofayson Historian, is just off the presses.
The book presents the stories of families who settled in Rim Country, focusing on the two rivers that drain the central mountains, with the events and characters that occurred along their shores. For purchasing information, contact Publish
America, PO Box 151, Frederick, MD 21705 or www.PublishAmerica.com on the Internet.
PAYSON SENIOR CENTER AND THRIFT STORE
The Birthday Bash for members having January birthdays will be held at noon January 16n the Center Dining Room,14 W. Main Street. Those celebratingirthdays this month should put their names in theirthday Barrel in the center lobby to be eligible for a gift drawing. Menu for the day is stir-fried chicken and vegetables, rice, egg roll, birthday cake and beverage.
The Paysonire Department will present a program on Vials of Life at 11 a.m. Jan. 23 in the center dining room. They will discuss how to keep track of your various prescription medications and ecord them in case of emergency. This program is free and open to the public.
White Elephant Bingo will be played beginning at 10 a.m. Thursday, Jan. 24 at the Senior Center.
here is no charge and anyone can play, Senior Center membership is not required.
Two events are scheduled for Monday, Jan. 28. The Old Tyme Music Makers will meet to make music at 9 a.m. in the dining room -- join them either to play an instrument or just to listen.
At 10 a.m., crafters are invited to take part in Crafters' Corner. Easy crafts will be made.ecessaryaterials will be provided.
Aerobics and line dancing classes meet on Tuesdays and Thursdays at the Center. Call (928) 474-4876 for information.
The Senior Thrift Store has a collection of "The Agatha Christie Mystery Series" in fine condition, some neveread.
They are hardbound in black leatherette with a silhouette of Agatha Christie on the front cover. They will be sold as a collection only, below Internet price. Please call the store at (928) 474-3205 to make an appointment to view them.
PAYSON REGIONAL SENIOR CIRCLE
Theelp Is Herexpress Bus sponsored by America's Pharmaceutical Research Companies will ben the Senior Circle parking lot at 215 N. Beeline Highway beginning at 10 a.m. Jan. 23 to explain programs and options for seniors whoay qualify for one or more of 475 patient assistance programs, many of which offer free or nearly free prescription medicines for those in need.
Demonstrations and on-site applications will be available.
There will be assistants on board to make sure the application process is quick and easy. There is no charge for this service and no reservations are required.
The January, 2008 Senior Circle calendar erroneously lists dance classes from 1 to 2 p.m. on Thursdays; this activity is now scheduled from 1 to 2 p.m. on Fridays.
Ballroom,atin and basic dance form will be taught weekly. all instructor Dee Force at (928) 468-6045 for information or call (928) 472-9290 to register.
If you are looking for something new to do in 2008, consider volunteering a few hours of your time at the Senior Circle.
Call Kathy Coombes, Senior Circle Adviser, for information at (928) 472-9290.
Smile -- it adds to your face value.