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December 12, 2021by helo-10

Can December begin the snow season?

December could be the month when we see some measurable snowfall. In the past, we have seen some fairly decent amount of snowfall in December and also a few white Christmases. It is always great to be prepared for snow, no matter when it arrives. Keep the snow shovel ready. Keep a bottle of WD-40 oil spray handy to spray the snow shovel with and prevent snow from sticking to the shovel. Spray the shovel a few times as you shovel the snow. Your arms will thank you and we are sure your heart will.

Lighting a Moravian star in season of Advent

The season of Advent is here and time to prepare for Jesus first coming and his birth in Bethlehem. It is the season to light up the Moravian star and let it shine all night to light the way for the Christ child and welcome him into our homes and hearts. You can purchase Moravian stars at Gullians book stores and at Moravian book stores. They come boxed and are easy to assemble.

Pearl Harbor: “A day of infamy,” 1941

Tuesday, Dec. 7 will be Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day. On a Sunday morning, 80 years ago at around 8 a.m., the Empire of Japan staged a surprise and unprovoked attack on the U.S. navel base at Pearl Harbor. It was a horrific attack that triggered the United States into World War Two. President Franklin Delano Roosevelt addressed the nation that evening and referred the event as “A day of infamy.” That same night, he urged Congress to declare war between the U.S. and the Empire of Japan. Two fateful days should never be forgotten in America and they are Pearl Harbor Remembrance Day and Patriots Day, Sept. 11. “Remember Pearl Harbor?” “We shall never forget.”

Looking for natural Christmas decor

As December begins, there is an abundance of the most unusual places such as roadsides, woodlands, and probably as close as your own backyard or lawn to find natural Christmas decorations. Honey suckles stay green all winter and blend well with Advent wreathes along with sprigs of red heart cedar. We can almost be sure the early Moravian’s would have used these greens in their Advent wreaths as well as short leaf pine sprigs. Nandena and dogwood berries also make colorful decor. Pine cones and pine boughs make great mantel decor, and wreaths for candle displays. Pine cones also provide Christmas accents. Popcorn kernels can be strung with a needle and thread and used on mantels, window sills, table center pieces and coffee tables. When popping corn, use plain kernels that are purchased in one pound bags, not microwavable popcorn. It works better, is whiter, and has zero seasoning. Holly is still around even though you may have to search harder to find it. Natural decor and ornaments you gather produce an atmosphere of Christmas past, but also bring us the aromas of past Christmases. The smells at grandma’s house were always smells of cedar pine mixed with country ham and chicken dressing.

The fresh cut aroma of Douglas Fir

Nothing brings the smell of Christmas to the home like the scent of fresh cut Douglas Fir and candles burning on the mantel. You may not have a seven foot Douglas Fir to create this atmosphere, but the Christmas tree lots have plenty of trimmings from Douglas Firs. They will be glad to give you some of these cuttings, but please be sure to pay them well because the folks work long, hard, cold, freezing hours in ice, wet, snow, sleet, biting wind and weather. Tell them that you appreciate their labors during this season. Many work for free as fundraisers for churches and other charities and organizations.

The season of recycling

Christmas parties, gatherings, dinners, gift wrappings, reunions, banquets, boxes, as well as bottles, cans, and cartons. All these items are what many families place in their trash containers that makes its way to the landfills. All these items could be broken down, cleaned and placed in recycling bins. More than half the trash we generate could be recycled and kept from landfills with only a little concern and effort. Recycling is easy and you can recycle all cardboard boxes (broken down), glass containers, plastic soft drink bottles, soft drink cans, plastic milk cartons, metal cans, newspapers and plastic bags. To prevent a mess, clean all cans, remove all labels, remove lids from metal cans, place inside the cans and bend shut. Think twice before throwing something in the trash can that can be recycled.

Fruitcakes: most misunderstood desserts

Fruitcakes often get a bad reputation and give many people a bad fruitcake experience simply because that what they tasted was not a real fruitcake, but a concoction of citron peelings and a few dried raisins and prunes, very few nuts and a crumbly dry mixture with no moisture and stickiness to hold it together — probably cost $6! This is no fruitcake because it simply has no substance, this is a bad experience fruitcake because its ingredients are not really fruits. You get what you pay for and a great fruitcake with plenty of nuts and fruits costs much more than $6. What does a real fruitcake consist of? First of all, it has quality ingredients such as pineapple chunks, red and green half maraschino cherries, plump moist golden raisins, chunks of walnuts and pecans, and only enough flour, sugar, brown sugar, molasses, rum, brandy, vanilla, orange, and lemon flavoring to hold the cake together. A real fruitcake will be sticky with flavor, but will also have the quality of moisture from the ingredients. Judge a real fruitcake by the merits of the fruits, nuts, and unique ingredients that hold the cake together. Nothing is like the real deal and a real fruitcake is a work of art, and a joy at Christmas time, a real Christmas memory of a lifetime. Accept no imitations of substitutes, invest in a genuine, real, fruitcake. Create a Christmas memory of good taste, not a horrible fruitcake experience!

Christmas cherry pudding

Cherries are a great product for making a Christmasy desert and this is a simple recipe to kick off the month of Christmas. For this recipe, you will need one 16-ounce can of Oregon (this is the brand name) and there are red cherries (with juice), two sticks light margarine, half stick light margarine, two large beaten eggs, two and a half cups plain flour, four teaspoons of baking powder, one fourth teaspoon salt, one cup milk, one teaspoon corn starch, half cup of water, one cup sugar, and one half cup sugar. Preheat oven to 375 degrees. Drain the can of red cherries and reserve the juice. Set both aside. In a large bowl, cream the two sticks of light margarine with one cup of sugar, add the two beaten eggs, and set aside. In another bowl, mix together two and a half cups flour, one fourth teaspoon salt, and four teaspoons of baking powder. Add one cup of milk to the flour mixture. Stir and mix the margarine, sugar, egg mixture into the flour mixture. Spoon the batter into a 13X9X2 inch baking pan or dish sprayed with baking spray. Cover with foil and bake for one hour until firm. To make the cherry sauce, combine the cherry juice, half cup sugar, half cup water, half stick light margarine and one tablespoon corn starch. Heat mixture over medium heat until margarine melts and sauce thickens. If sauce needs to be thicker, add more cornstarch with cold water and thicken to consistency you desire. Pour over the cooled cake and spread the cherries over top of the cake. Serve with Cool Whip, Dream Whip, or dairy whipping cream.

Christmas tree lots greening up

Since the week before Thanksgiving, the Christmas trees have been sprouting on vacant lots of loads of trees are arriving each day. They come in all shapes, sizes, and heights. You can choose from Scotch Pine, White Pine, Frazier Fir, Douglas Fir, and Spruce. Here is what to look for in searching for the perfect tree: (1) The tree must smell and look fresh. (2) Test the tree by bending a few limbs; they should spring back. (3) Bounce the tree to see if needles stay on the tree, if any needles fall out, don’t buy that tree. (4) Buy the tree a day before you intend to decorate it. (5) Make sure the tree is full with no bare spots. (6) Prepare the tree before bringing it into the home by getting a worker at the lot to cut two inches off the bottom if they haven’t already done so. Place trunk in a tub of water for 24 hours before preparing it for the home. (7) Place tree in the support stand that allows you to water the tree. (8) A watered tree will last for 30 days in the home. (9) Never leave tree lights on inside the home when you leave.

Hoe hoe hoedown

The father gathered all his children together and said, “Kids, when George Washington knocked down the cherry tree, he told his father honestly that he did it. Now answer me honestly, who knocked down the outhouse?” Finally, the youngest son admitted to knocking it over. After this, he was well disciplined by his father. “It’s not fair,” said the youngest son, “George Washington did not get punished when he told the truth.” “Son,” replied the father, “George Washington’s father was not in the cherry tree when George knocked the tree down.”

“A cheerful giver.” On the way out of the church service 6 year old Jan told the pastor, “When I grow up I’m going to give you some money.” The preacher said, “Well thank you, but why do you want to give me your money?” Jan said, “Because my father said you are one of the poorest preachers we have ever had.”

The almanac for December

The new moon of December occurred on the evening of Saturday, Dec. 4. Pearl Harbor Day is Tuesday, Dec. The moon reaches its first quarter Friday, Dec. 10. There will be a full moon on the night of Saturday, Dec. 18. The moon will be named “Full Cold Mood.” Winter begins on Tuesday, Dec. 21. Christmas Eve is on Friday, Dec. 24. Christmas Day is Saturday, Dec. 25. The moon reaches its last quarter on Sunday, Dec. 26. New Years Eve is on Friday, Dec. 31.

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