Well, it is finally the last month of what can only be described as a very trying year! For as long as I can remember, I have been able to say, “I can do ANYTHING for a time”. Now that there is light at the end of the tunnel, I can breathe again!! I hope you are all feeling the same way! I’ll be the first in line for that COVID-19 vaccination! Perhaps, in years to come, the health professionals will have it arranged for us to get it at the same time as our fall flu shot! Kill two birds with one stone.

We do have to continue to find ways to make it through Christmas and the next few months though. December will likely be the most difficult month yet, so let’s stick together. I don’t know about the rest of you but I find that I have made some truly wonderful SCONA friends over the last few months, even while not seeing each other!! Keep those phone calls coming! I love them and they are good for all of our souls!! I wouldn’t mind some more letters too, if the spirit so moves you!

I didn’t receive very many responses to writing our next story so it is taking me a bit longer to pull it together. I’ll mail it out in December as soon as it’s done. However, I have an idea for using those envelopes we sent, in a way that might bring a little Christmas cheer. Choose a person in your life; An adult child, grandchild, old friend, the kid down the street, or even me and write a lovely letter to them about what Christmas was like for you as a youth. Tell them how your dad and maybe the children in your family went to chop down the Christmas tree in the field at the end of town, or how you went to church and sang carols in candle light on Christmas Eve, or how you sat in the living room with the whole family and listened to carols on the radio, how your presents were often made by mom or dad, how your stocking came stuffed mostly with nuts in their shells and you had to be quick to be the first to find the hammer, or the first time you were able to give presents to others. If you think about it, I’ll bet most people you know have no idea what Christmas past was like for you. How delighted someone will be to find your letter in their mailbox!! Let me know if you decide to partake!

The current state of the virus in Edmonton means we will not be able to get together for some time. For the past ten or twelve years I have had a crowd of you over to SCONA for Christmas dinner on Christmas Day; last year it was Christmas Eve. This year it’s a no-go. I don’t think I have ever felt so lost! It truly has always been “the best time of the year”. We might all have to stay in our own homes as well! If that is the case, be absolutely certain to call at least one friend! I’ll be home alone too, so please consider me a friend and put me on your Christmas list too!

Here’s a little happening I would like to share with you and hope you laugh as hard as I did! My children, grandchildren and I have celebrated Christmas a few days after Christmas for the past ten or twelve years because I have always been cooking a turkey at SCONA. This year I suggested my children have their own Christmas celebration in their separate homes on Christmas Day and we will have Christmas as a family at my place in July! They think that is a

marvelous idea! The last person I talked to about the change was my youngest grandson, Owen, who just turned six one day ago, and whom many of you have met. I explained to him that he would have Christmas at his house with his mom, dad, and siblings on Christmas Day. Then, because the world is sick right now, we will have Christmas at my house in July! I will put up the tree, make sure there are lots of presents for everyone under it, cook turkey dinner, and we’d have lots of fun outside! He looked at the floor and listened very intently. Then he lifted his head, looked at me, and said “Well, that’s stupid”. I thought I’d die laughing! In tears I said, “Why?! It’s a marvelous idea!” He looked at me like my stupidity deserved sympathy and said, “There’s no snow in July, Gramma” and walked out of the room. LOLOLOL!!

Bake some cookies for a friend, read a good book, listen to whatever rousing music you love, watch a movie that makes you laugh, talk to lots of friends, especially your SCONA friends, and stay safe.