It’s beginning to feel a lot like Christmas
By Margaret Melloy Guziak -
There is a long-standing tradition at Sacred Heart Church at Aspen and Maple streets in Fruita to set up a “Giving Tree” every year in a corner of the tiny vestibule where you enter the church. The Christmas tree is decorated with little paper angels made of construction paper. They are called the “Oaks Christmas Angels.” Everyone is invited to pick an angel from the tree.
On the reverse side, you will read a “Christmas wish” from a resident of the Oaks Assisted Living Center, for something they want for Christmas. It can vary from new slippers, a sweater, to money for beauty shop visits, to stamps or stationary. You can read them ahead of time before selecting one. Most people randomly select a paper angel and fulfill their wish. It is a way to honor our elderly neighbors. All gifts have to be wrapped, with angel attached and taken back by Dec. 16 to the church or the Parish Hall/office across the street because they will be distributed at the Oaks Resident Christmas Party.
If your church or women’s group needs a charity project this season, it may be something you would want to consider doing for another local nursing or group home. Of course, you will want to check with their staff official to see if it’s something they would like to have there, or if it is currently being done by another group.
Christmas doings in Fruita
There are many, many charity projects you can be part of but, don’t forget about Santa Claus and singing “Jingle Bells”! It is a wonderful childhood fantasy that you want your children to believe in for as long as they can. Our youngest son talks about listening and hearing Santa’s sleigh bells up on the roof one year, while pretending to be asleep when he was very little. We don’t doubt that he heard them, but we think it was probably his older brother ringing them in the closet to fuel his imagination. Didn’t your kids always leave a glass of milk and a couple of cookies for Santa to eat when he got to your house because he would be so very hungry? Fun memories.
Do the schools still stage Dickens’ “Christmas Carol” play with stingy, old Ebenezer Scrooge and the Ghosts of Christmas Past, Present and Future, the lovable Cratchit family and crippled Tiny Tim ending with the line, “God bless us everyone”? I hope so.
Does anyone remember Bing Crosby, Rosemary Clooney, Danny Kaye and Vera-Ellen singing Irving Berlin’s music in the 1954 movie “White Christmas”? I read where the play “White Christmas” is playing in Denver this Christmas season. Too bad someone didn’t also schedule it here for the Western Slope. Sometimes there are those who think that sophisticated shows are what the people want. However, they forget that every Christmas is about old-time family memories, music and plain and simple holidays, no matter when or where you grew up.
The song “White Christmas” was written in 1941 by Irving Berlin and was the most requested, popular song during WWII for GIs serving overseas and their families.
“I’m dreaming of a white Christmas, Just like the ones I used to know.”
They say if Bing Crosby had never recorded another song, he would have been rich because of his recording of this Christmas favorite. And as long as our sons and daughters are serving overseas, this song will never be dated and will continue to be played on radio and television.
The Internet says there are more than 500 recordings of the song in many different languages, starting with Bing Crosby on his NBC Kraft Music Hall show on Christmas Day 1941. From Sinatra to Perry Como, from Eddie Fisher to Elvis, from Jackie Evancho to Taylor Swift, recordings have been made and will continue to be made of this most popular of all Christmas songs.
Country music coming to the Avalon before Christmas
The Christmas Jubilee show with the Bar-D Wranglers from Durango is coming to the Avalon Theater on Dec. 15. Tickets may be sold out by the time this column goes to press, but if not, they are being sold at Western Implement/Ranch Rite on North Ave. in Grand Junction and Murdoch’s in Clifton. Call and ask if they have any tickets left.
They are all general admission tickets with doors opening at 6 p.m. for the 7 p.m. show. Their ads say, it will be “an evening of Christmas songs and comedy, guitar pickin’ and fiddlin’ that families of all ages are sure to enjoy.” Their four-man act is similar to “Riders in the Sky” who have performed many times to appreciative audiences at the Avalon Theatre. We’ve bought our tickets for the Bar-D Wranglers and will be there!
Does anyone remember the phrase, “Meet me at the Eagle,” especially at Christmas-time? If so, you must be from Philadephia or around that area of the East. There is even a current book with that title for nostalgia buffs who remember being in Wanamaker’s Department store and what it looked like, especially at holiday time. We will talk about that in next week’s column.
Ever hear of “First Night” celebrations? I didn’t either until I received a newspaper published by a friend in Wildwood, N.J., about their celebration there. Is there anybody else reading this who has also spent some time at the beach in Wildwood on the South Jersey Shore? Let me know.
So many worthwhile local charities are out there and so many fine people holding them from our FMHS students to those collecting food and clothing for the needy.
The spirit of Christmas is alive and well in Fruita, Colorado.