The calendar is letting us get a newspaper to you before the actual day. With the busy times and so many things to do you may not get to read this until after the big Christmas Day. Let it be known that whenever you read this, I wish you all a very joyful, peaceful Christmas and hopefully all the gifts and family gatherings will or have worked out.

It has been over nine years since Chad Richardson called me and said to “send him a few words.” That was the total extent of his asking me to write for the Hastings Star Gazette. The year before, I had written him a letter and asked if he would think about and find a writer that would cover gardening, farm market and other related items. I did not hear back from him until May of the next year and he said he had been thinking about it but had not found a writer that wanted to do it. I pretty much said, “OK, I guess it was a good thought.” Next thing I hear is those words that started it all: “send me a few words.” Well, that was easy for him to say. You may remember that I shared with you the fact that I was told in high school that I had no talent for art, public speaking and most of all writing. Chad did not get that memo. He did not lay out any guidelines on subjects, length of the article, what it would be called and if it was just going to be a one-time shot at it.

I guess I could give it a try. The worst thing that could happen would be that he would reject it and the best thing would be that I would get one chance to be in the paper. The name for the article came easy as I wrote about the faith that us humans have putting seeds in the ground and it was OK with us to wait for them to come up and then wait again until they produced the crops we expected from them. I expected a lot of edits and who knows what but WOW it was printed just as I sent it in! The next day I put in a call to Chad and he was not available but someone at the paper said go ahead and write another article for the upcoming week as she did not hear Chad say anything about not having another article. The writing train took off and all through the summer and fall harvest the articles appeared each and every week. After the fall harvest, I called Chad again and he was in and I asked him if he wanted me to continue, wait until spring to start again, or end the fun time I had doing the articles as he may have other plans for other writers. He said people were excited about it and if I could think of enough things to write about in the “off season” I should continue. It appears that I could think of enough things and my stack of ideas measures about 2-feet high nine years later!

I appreciate all you loyal readers throughout the years. I look forward each week to sharing with you a bit of my life and knowledge and truly hope it does bring information, perhaps a little humor and makes your day brighter. Thank you for approaching me and telling me you are one of my loyal readers. That makes me really feel it is all worth it. Ideas are always welcome and feel free to email if you want to share something.

We are nearing that somewhat magic year of 2020, although at times I still think that 2000 only happened a few years ago. Wishing good and kind things for all in that magic year; you are special to me!