Did you have a nice Thanksgiving? My nephew Casey did the cooking. That young man could be a chef! Between his cooking and Josie Christopher's ricotta cookies, I'm going to hate to get on the scales after the holidays!
In church last week we were talking about the things we were grateful for. I think my parents were God's gift to me. They directed my life so much. My father taught me that I was three-fourths spiritual and one-fourth physical. The body is nothing. The mind and soul are what really count. So I believed I was healthy even though I was home with a hole in my heart and didn't get it patched up until I was 52. That patch is still holding. I now have a new hole, but I'm going to forget about it. I find it hard to believe I'm this old.
As for my mother, she taught me so many things, but I want to pass on to you the gift of wisdom she passed on to me. When I was a young girl she taught me how to have a happy marriage. She said, "When you get married don't try to win all the time because every time you win, that means your husband loses. Do you want to make a loser out of your husband? If you do, he will learn to hate you, but if you let him win he will do more for you than you ever would have asked for."
She was so right. It's not hard to say, "You are right. Thanks for pointing that out."
I know I was a mistake. My sister Rose taught me, "The eighth kid is a mistake." But my parents were not mistakes. They were made for me - God's gift.
Come to think of it, though, maybe I wasn't a mistake. When they got old and sick and needed shots, I was the one who did the job. I gave Roddy shots, too, and catheterized Rose, and I wasn't even a nurse.
The greatest gift in my life has been my faith. It is such a blessing to have the peace that passes all understanding. Oh, I'm not going to give a sermon, I'm just going to say if you don't know the difference you don't know what you're missing.
I had a call yesterday from Joan Loewer who is in charge of "Miracle on Main Street" which will take place Dec. 1 in Fredonia. She would like about 20 greeters to greet the people eating in the Methodist Church. I told her I would volunteer and ask for helpers in this column. If we can count on you anytime between 10 a.m. and 4 p.m., call me at 679-4772 and I'll put you down for an hour or two.
I want to bring something else to your attention. Friday afternoon I had a terrible time getting out of White Street. Cars were lined up as far as the eye could see on the west side and up to Cleveland Avenue on the east side! Fortunately, drivers let me through.
After I finished my errands I called up a friend of mine and we discussed the situation. He thinks the lights running east and west should be longer than those running north and south because the traffic is heavier and I think that makes sense. If you agree or have another solution tell it to the police station or whoever is in transportation. I could have let you think I was so smart, by not telling you this was a friend's idea, since he wanted to remain anonymous, but that would be cheating. I thought it was smart thinking on his part.
Now to get on to our project of promoting tourism in our county. To be honest with you, I'm learning things and meeting new interesting people. I've been making calls and asking questions of bus companies and travel agencies, asking if they put tours together or if people put tours together themselves and depend on them for transportation. I found out that the second option is faster.
Maybe you can help me with an idea I'm toying around with. For couples with children who can't afford long vacations, how about putting three-day packages together? For example, Fredonia could supply free music in the park Wednesdays, Dunkirk could supply free music Thursday at the Pier, and the movie complex could provide family-oriented movies at family prices.
Now let's come up with some ideas for activities during those days for the children. Could we have arts and crafts in the park? Help me out here.
We won't be meeting until after Christmas, but in the meantime you can call me or come over. I love company. I want this to be a community effort. Let's be creative!
Margaret Valone is a Fredonia resident. Send comments on this column to firstname.lastname@example.org