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Finding happiness in each other

November has arrived and with it comes several annual events.

November always makes me think of helping others more during this upcoming holiday season. However, this election period has brought out the absolute worst I have ever seen of mankind. I cannot wait until all of this negativity subsides.

This Wednesday, Nov 11, we honor Veterans Day.

Let us never forget that these brave men and women served our country by putting their own lives on the line.

I have a small group of men that I’ve made friends with at our local mall.

Most all are veterans, and they gather there to walk and visit. I enjoy stopping and chatting with them when I see them; both of my brothers served in the U.S. Navy and are gone now, so listening to their stories is interesting to me.

It costs me nothing to stop and make someone else smile. My face mask even spells out S-M-I-L-E on it.

I have always tried to be a positive person; you know it takes less muscles to smile than to frown.

Winston Churchill said “Attitude is a little thing that makes a big difference.”

And Dennis S. Brown (author and motivational speaker) once stated: “The only difference between a good day and a bad day is your attitude.”

The Salvation Army will soon set up the Giving Tree at the Ohio Valley Mall and kick off the Red Kettle Campaign.

Watch for more details coming soon.

I have taken several names from this tree every year.

What a wonderful way to bless children less fortunate in our own Ohio Valley.

This can be a great learning experience for our own children/grandchildren. I plan to have my granddaughters take a nametag, shop, wrap and return the gift, thus allowing them to experience the joy of giving.

I encourage you as well, especially with the difficulties many more families are dealing with this year with the COVID-19 pandemic. If you cannot help another child this year, at least think about throwing some coins into the red kettle.

Explaining this campaign to your youngsters can also be a teaching moment.

Thanksgiving is held on the fourth Thursday of November. For the first time in its over 90-year history, the Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade will not march down 34th Street in New York; the parade is being “reinvented” this year with a televised and online version.

Due to the pandemic, the parade participants and workers have been cut by 25 percent. More details will follow soon.

Also affected by this virus this year will be travel — Thanksgiving is usually the busiest travel day of the year. Less people will be on the road, planes or trains, for fear of COVID-19.

But as Roderick Thorp stated, “We have to learn to be our own best friends because we fall too easily into the trap of being our own worst enemies.”

This holiday season, we need an attitude of gratitude.

May we find joy in everyday things and simple pleasures.

James Matthew Barrie, novelist/playwright who created Peter Pan, once said, “Those who bring sunshine to the lives of others cannot keep it from themselves.”

I came across a poem the other day that I’d like to share with you. It jumped off the page at me because I have a copy held by a magnet to my fridge.

My sister and I have sent this poem back and forth to each other in years past.

Please enjoy it (cut it out if you want) and I pray that God richly blesses you during this holiday season.

It is titled “Don’t Quit” and was written by Clinton Howell.

“Don’t Quit”

When things go wrong, as they sometimes will,

When the road you’re trudging seems all uphill,

When the funds are low, and the debts are high,

And you want to smile, but you have to sigh.

When care is pressing you down a bit,

Rest if you must, but don’t you quit.

Life is queer with its twists and turns,

As every one of us sometimes learns,

And many a failure turns about,

When he might have won had he stuck it out;

Don’t give up though the pace seems slow,

You may succeed with another blow.

Success is failure turned inside out,

the silver tint of the clouds of doubt.

And you never can tell how close you are,

It may be near when it seems so far;

So stick to the fight when you’re hardest hit,

It’s when things seem worst,

that you must not quit.

Remember the words of Cavett Robert — “If you don’t think every day is a good day, just try missing one.”

Happy Thanksgiving to all of you!

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