Christmas is a special time of the year.
Once a year, young and old have the opportunity to develop a child-like heart, and to give and receive.
Decorations go up; trees are adorned; gifts are purchased and, on Christmas Day, families, small and large, gather.
Since Dec. 24, 2007, Christmas, for me, has remained a quiet time of reflection and gratitude.
Six years ago, this Christmas Eve, I was admitted to the VA hospital in Wilkes-Barre, not knowing if I would live or die, but knowing the next few weeks would be difficult ones.
Christmas is a time for miracles and magic, and for 85 special Dream Come True of the Lehigh Valley children, the non-profit foundation created a magical world this past Saturday in Kempton.
The youngsters were treated to a train ride aboard the North Pole Express, also known as the Wanamaker, Kempton and Southern Railroad to visit Santa and Mrs. Claus at the North Pole, aka the Kempton Community Center.
Dream Come True children ride to the North Pole on the WK&S.
The average size of a U.S. crop farm has changed little during the past three decades.
However, this seeming stability masks important structural changes in our farm sector: There are growing numbers of very small and very large farms, and declining numbers of mid-sized farms.
In 2011, 1.68 million U.S. farms had an average size of 234 acres, according to our USDA.
However, 80 percent of farms were smaller than this average with just 45 acres.
On the other hand, most cropland was on much larger farms those with 1,000 acres or more. How can this be?
I was standing on the corner
of 23rd and Psalm
Feeling kinda nervous
Trying to stay calm.
I was looking for direction
And wondering what I'd find
I was hoping that I'd meet someone
Compassionate and kind.
But looks can be deceiving
And things not always what they seem
I wasn't sure of what happened next
Or what it all might mean.
I thought I saw a shepherd
Though I couldn't see his sheep
He walked right up to me and said he thought
That it was time we should meet.
Three topics to be avoided during any holiday gathering include religion, politics and money. Politics is a definite topic to stay away from – sure to inflate blood pressure in many individuals.
Money is another – salaries, spending, inflation, etc. However, talking about and walking the walk of personal faith seems to be an equally touchy subject.
On Facebook, friends ask for prayers when loved ones are undergoing surgery, have experienced a death in the family or are in need of a miracle.
November has always been a time of the year I've enjoyed.
Autumn is officially here and the leaves have fallen off the trees. I can't say I enjoy raking them, but they're nice to look at.
The temperature has changed and it's colder outside, but I love wearing layers.
There's nothing quite as comforting as being bundled in my pea coat and having a scarf tied around my neck.
And then there's Thanksgiving.
Der Baydawg is widder doe,
Un es glabbert yo so in der Kich;
Blendy arwet fer mich,
Welsh-hawna un lots funn socha,
Muss ich now ready
macha in der Kich;
Es is g'shpboss fer mich,
Kucha un feel boi,
Shtana shunt in ra roi In der Kich;
Oh, es shwitzed mich.
De kinner kumma ol hame,
Wil wetta se acta wider
es same in der Kich;
Ei, es lechered mich.
Eb mer essa, duhna mer bayda,
Shpater shwappa mer
resayda in der Kich;
Blendy harlichkate fer mich.
Der baydawg kumt un gayed,
Many families this Thanksgiving will wonder why they should give thanks.
Some may have lost their homes, to fire, foreclosure or to sheriff's sale.
Others may have lost their jobs or their health insurance.
Many may be suffering from the loss of a loved one or having been told they have a serious illness.
Thanksgiving, however, is an ideal time to discuss treasured memories.
Stores are opening this year on Thanksgiving.