Monday, December 13, 2010

Weather Outside is Frightful

High winds after a Sunday of falling snow caused schools in our area to be called off today. Our pastor said yesterday that he wondered about calling off morning services, but he was glad he didn’t since most people made it. The director of our children and youth program yesterday afternoon wrote on Facebook that the crowd was bigger than usual, so the decisions not to cancel were correct. It is always difficult to know.

Gerald took me in the pickup into Marion to see the Cedars yesterday afternoon, and it was slick getting in and out of their house just as it had been at church. (But our pastor was out helping us safely inside at church, and Gerald did the same for me at the Cedars.)

It was exciting to open the Southern Illinoisan yesterday and see a front-page story and photograph of Hua-Ling Hu holding her new book The Undaunted Women of Nanking. When this busy season is over, I am going to settle down and concentrate on these diaries of this Illinois missionary and her Chinese assistant as they worked together with grit and pure moral courage and saved the lives of many women and children in Nanking. This new book with their translated diaries is available through the University Press at Southern Illinois University, Barnes and Noble, and, of course,

I stayed inside today and enjoyed looking out the windows at the beauty there while I felt snug and cozy. Despite the cold, actually the roads were better today than yesterday. (Our driveway had drifted last night but snow was blown the rest of the way off by this morning,)

Granddaughter Erin said she had no problems on our roads when she came over to pick up her dog Sadie. Gerald has been dog sitting while she went to the coaches’ convention at San Diego. Since Sadie would ride with him or walk with him to the mailbox, Gerald grew fond of her. Although Sadie is a house dog at Erin’s, she was seemingly quite content to sleep in Gerald’s shop, and she absolutely loved playing in the snow and running around the farm.

I had the downstairs tree in the family room decorated last week, and Saturday night Gerald put together the new pre-lit tree for the upstairs living room that we bought that day at Paducah. I had replaced the downstairs tree with a pre-lit one last year and was determined to do the same upstairs this year. The stores were already out of some of the advertised trees. (Erin got the old tree with its strings of lights for her house.)

Today while I listened to the music of Susan Boyle, I put the ornaments and the roses on the new tree. I set up the manager scene the Taylors gave us one year, and put batteries in the clock that plays carols that the neighbors gave us in 2003. I have wreaths on three doors and a couple more to go. Maybe tomorrow I’ll get the rest of the decorations out of the big boxes sitting in the guest room and place them. Most are gifts from previous years and so they carry memories.

Gerald put the first batch of cards in the mail for me today when he went to a doctor’s appointment. But that annual correspondence project has just barely been started. The dining room table is awash with envelopes, stamps, et cetera, and it will probably stay that way for awhile. It does every year. And sometimes I finish up the job after Christmas. When cards have come back because of wrong addresses, I have sent them out with another catch-up note in July.

I had hoped to start baking and freezing the Christmas pies this week. We’ll see. I’ll be going to town tomorrow. Sam has a mid-day orthodontist appointment, and I need to buy some Christmas cards and more stamps. So pie making may not start until Wednesday—if even then. I learned a long time ago that what I want to do but don’t get done will not really matter on Christmas Day.

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