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Publisher’s Page: Those Thanksgiving road trips

| Publisher's Page | January 9, 2014

Published: November 27, 2013

Thanksgiving is all about families getting together to share our love and memories, as well as acknowledging God as our source of provision. And many of us are accustomed to making long car trips to Grammas this time of year.

There is no reason a trip like this shouldn’t be pleasant considering how luxurious, safe and reliable most cars are today. Each person will listen to theater quality music while luxuriating in heated and cooled seats. A little bored? Just flip down the video screen and enjoy your favorite music while “in flight”. Upon arrival we’ll just pull up in the drive, relaxed and “looking like a million dollars”.

As a child I can remember a few of those trips, too. I suppose we enjoyed it back then, but it was more like an adventure than a simple car trip. We had relatives in South Georgia, no more than two hundred miles away, but because of our old car and the narrow, bumpy roads, that trip would take about five hours.

For the times, our car had a few safety features, too – brakes (when they worked), a horn, and tires which would last at least half the trip without a blow out. And yes, we had a nav system. It was a ball-shaped object on top of the dash – a compass, which would tell us, most of the time, whether we were traveling North or South. Additional detailed results could be obtained by using a paper map of the state – that is until it blew out of the open window and was run over by the 4 cars waiting to pass us!

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Publisher’s Page: My favorite Halloween memories

| Publisher's Page | January 9, 2014

Published: November 6, 2013

I sure hope you had your costume ready last week, cause it was that “scary” time of the year again. Children were strategically planning their route. Moms and Dads were shopping for candy, and together, families were decorating the front door and carving a pumpkin to light the way. Schools and churches were having Halloween Carnivals to provide fun and games in a safe environment. And Downtown Newnan had its annual Munchkin Masquerade. But the main attraction is still going door to door, “Trick or Treating”, showing off your costume and collecting the “loot”. It can be enjoyable for the children as well as adults if you let it.

HalloweenAs I’m writing this article, I’m reminded of the fond memories I have of this holiday as a child. My parents would let us out of the car and pick us up at the end of the streets. We wore our homemade costumes and traveled by rollerskates from door to door. (Back then, most in-town neighborhoods had concrete sidewalks.) This all culminated in the eating of too much candy in a short period of time, resulting in a most uncomfortable state.

But my favorite Halloween memories are of the times I spent with my children and grandchildren. We always carved a pumpkin on the kitchen floor and installed a proper wax candle – no plastic or batteries for us! Sometimes my wife would help them make a costume, and some years they wanted a more professional looking “Get Up”. And each year it was my job to safely escort them around the neighborhood, repairing broken rubber bands and adjusting the ill-fitting costume. Their masks were sometimes on the side of their little faces causing them to trip over everything, but they were “playing the role”, and enjoying the process. As they got older, they decided it wasn’t “cool” to go with daddy any longer and left me at home. But then there were grandchildren enabling us to, once again, get involved, which made us very happy until they, too, got a little older.

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Publisher’s Page: Connecting Church Food with Denominations

| Publisher's Page | January 9, 2014

Published: October 23, 2013

The White Oak Presbyterian Church on Gordon Rd. recently had another one of their popular Barbecue and Stew sales. My wife and I, knowing how good it is, bought enough to put in the freezer for later enjoyment. It also gave us a chance to say hello to some people we don’t see often enough. The White Oak members seem to be salt of the earth folks in a community of friendly families.

And it’s true that most churches enjoy sharing good food at their functions – it’s a “Southern Thing”. But even in the South, this “church food” seems to be somewhat denominationally specific. Perhaps their “palates” are trained by some culinary doctrine handed down through the generations. For example, the Southern Baptists will serve fried chicken every chance they get along with iced tea half full of sugar, with banana pudding for dessert. (Makes me hungry while I am typing.) The in-town churches serve theirs in a fellowship hall and the country churches call it “Dinner on the Grounds”.

My good friends at the local Catholic Church have a big fundraiser at least once a year where they serve some fantastic seafood along with draft beer. The fish and seafood they prepare is delicious and is a favorite of many Newnan folks, including me. Now the Episcopalians will probably go by and pick up servings from White Oak, blend it, put it on fancy toast points, call it a paté, serve it on a silver tray, and pair it with an appropriate glass of wine.

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