So the New Year flies in and drags Old Man Winter with her, seeding the sidewalks with sleet, ice pellets and snow.
Oh, but the second week finds sunshine sparkling the snow left behind on the sidewalks, and the children come out to be squinting shyly in the sun, wondering where the rest of the snow bunnies went.
It’s a ragged world; changes occur with a gasp of breath and howl of frigid air. Where are we going this time? we ask. And the answer depends on where we stand: bravely in every gust or cowering inside, refusing to be tossed around.
Then the next Fury hurls sleet into the wind, splitting the clouds with ice and a wail. And with each gust the New Year sails ahead guiding and directing the tempest. How long can this continue? Where will the sails in the skies steer us?
Quiet settles with the snowflakes gently floating, and Howling drowns with a whimper, a cough and a sigh. Sunlight peeps down at a shifting sweep of white, as below, the tempest drifts quietly away. Silence assumes the end of another storm, and all sigh their relief.
January will chase into February soon, raising a song of hope. Something new may overtake our experience, raising a flag of triumph for a new day.
Soon December will exit, leaving us with memories of old connections renewed and new attachments invited. What wonders await? Certainly the current weather trends inspire all to dress warmly, speak softly, and listen to the winds of time rushing at us with a new year.
If one reads too much into the headlines of each day, those winds wail of oncoming troubles. But between the lines there are and will be items of kindness and companionship, devotion to duty, blessings for all.
This is the season when our better selves are renewed with a breath of welcome to all, and a hope for caring for others. Christmas is about giving and it is passing, but taking that feeling into a new year will inspire all to try again, one more time, one more day.
For the last few months, this page has been a forum for ideas coming from the Library staff. We challenge you to offer some ideas about the reason for the season. You may put them in our Facebook page below and they will fill in this space as well. It may be funny or serious. You may offer a new slant on old news or old traditions slanted a new way. Keep it short enough others may also participate, but long enough to make us think anew.
If you watch the news or read a newspaper frequently, you can see some reasons that a month that honors giving thanks might be a difficult season. The media report every ghastly event they see, hear or witness. In a giving season (such as Thanksgiving), one can be overwhelmed with the horrific or the unthinkable. And lately there has been so much.
But don’t give up on the idea that our country also hosts many amazing and wonderful events that shine a light on what is truly a gift. It doesn’t have to be a star-studded fund raiser; it can be a one-person effort to add beauty or meaning to others’ lives. It is out of thankfulness for one’s own well-being that many people here in our country offer help for the troubles in others’ lives.
Often the bad news blares into the darkness, warning us of the evils that track others down. Too often we become second-hand witnesses of the wrongs done and it’s harmful to us all.
During this month we honor our veterans who gave selflessly to keep us free and we give thanks to our creator that we have life, love and liberty. To forget this makes us susceptible to the despair that can ruin our country and our lives.
Here, in Lied Battle Creek Public Library, our working staff really enjoys decorating for holidays. I mean, we sometimes get so carried away that all you can really notice is the decor. Should you come in unaware,you might be startled at the blatant garishness of our efforts.
Take the month of October, if you can. We are leaping into one of our best collections of Fall and Halloween decor. (Don’t tell anyone, but there’s a ‘dead witch’ under our easy chair–well at least her legs are.) Once in awhile, during October, someone will ease into that chair without noticing the legs sticking out underneath (purple stockings and orange shoes is a tip-off). But sometimes they do notice and they pull out the headless torso and toss it aside. One does want to be careful not to annoy the deceased.
Black cats, orange strings of lights with black spiders dripping from them, and ghastly decorated leafless trees adorned with pumpkins and creepy smiling pumpkins are not our only talents. There are evil-looking black owls perched in the Young Adult room on a ledge infested with black and silver feathered nests and the demanding warning – BEWARE!
Ghosts and creepy pumpkins’ faces peer in from the windows. A giant black spider with a purple back and evil red eyes glaring down from the ceiling encourages you to COME IN!
Of course we have the run-of-the-mill Autumn leaves to settle your nerves a bit before you leave. We don’t want anyone to think there’s something unusual about our library. You will drop in, won’t you? We really miss you when you don’t. Ha ha ha ha!
September and October find us looking ahead for what is to come; yet we can’t help glancing back at what is behind. Annual events spark memories of the past: Labor Day, Patriot Day, Constitution Day–all influenced the way we live in this country. A nation of workers and patriots and law abiding citizens (for the most part) built a way of life other nations envy. And even though events seem to turn against us, we must acknowledge the hard work and dedication of our people, our representatives in government, the strong defense of our military, and our faith as a nation. Whoever we are and whatever our faith, Americans acknowledge how precious it is to live in this land.
So when Autumn rears her pretty head, we need to remind ourselves of what we have and what wonders may come living here and working here together. The ‘falling leaves ‘ drift by my window now. Each golden and crimson leaf fluttering in the breeze is a treasure, although a brief one, that reminds us of our natural and national treasures and hopes for the future.
To everyone who donated to the needs of our citizens whose homes laid in the path of a hurricane or a fire, thank you. To all of our policemen, firemen, emergency aid workers, doctors, and rescuers, thank you. Not all of us can rush to the rescue, perhaps, but we can all be grateful to those who do.
Yes, everyone has wondered that in recent years. Well, maybe not everyone, but some of the avid fair goers might have. Take the example of a young student who joined 4-H and she/he has accomplished many goals toward State Fair participation. Could it be that if one had to miss a day of school to show his/her accomplishments during the summer and he/she had to take homework to the Fair the assignments might not get done???
Now, a dedicated 4-H’er’ would never be lax enough to forget homework, but it could be quite a challenge to remember homework when your prize chicken gets a ribbon– or a cool report about the wheat grown on the farm gets you first place and a chance to go to the Fair for the first time.
But think of all the things that can be learned in August at the State Fair! Surely one cannot miss such an opportunity! Work hard young 4-H participants and don’t let your assignments get lost along the way. We are rooting for you.
July is a great month for remembering, and it is also a great month for honoring. What can we remember? The wonderful celebrations of our cities and towns that honor our veterans and citizens who have performed difficult tasks, sacrificing lives, wealth, and honor for others.
July is a great month for remembering how much we need each other in order to preserve and enhance the wonderful country we have.
July hails us as a guardian encourages his children to enjoy and participate in all that is good in our lives.
The 4th of July sings to us of courage and sacrifice, giving and receiving, honor and hope.
Gusty summer days and wild sparkling nights remind us to be grateful for what we know every day and night is ours and it is beautiful.
Independence Day–a reminder of what the people who came before us sought so desperately and their heirs cling to still today.
Battle Creek Fun Days brightens our city on June 2-4th. On Friday, June 2nd, the Carnival sets up on Main Street and runs through Sunday, June 4th. Its hours are: Friday 5-11 pm, Saturday 12-10 pm, & Sunday 12 pm-10 pm. Register for the Home Run Derby @ 6:30 pm at the park. It is sponsored by the BC Ball Association.
Saturday everyone may enjoy the carnival and these other activities: Market in the BC Park; Cub Scouts Pinewood Derby, Lions Club Kid Games, Pool Party, Cup Cake Walk, BBQ, Parade 8 pm, & Meat auction after parade (Main Street).
Sunday wraps it all up with the Carnival from 12 pm-10 pm. Many thanks to the BC Betterment Club, Lions Club, BC Ball Association, Boy Scouts, St. John Lutheran and St. Pat’s Education Center, 106 Kix Radio Station, and many other helpful Battle Creek citizens.
What other month delivers so much entertainment as May? Memories and celebrations abound: Cinco de Mayo on the 5th, full moon on the 6th, graduations (Battle Creek on the 13th), Mother’s Day on the 14th, and Memorial Day on the 29th! That is a lot of action for a beautiful start to summer.
With summer comes baseball games, picnics, and summer reading. Summer reading sign up begins here on Friday, May 26 and continues until the activities start in June. Our theme is all about ‘building’: building communities, building new reading fun, and enjoying a new way to learn. Our speaker, Curtis Mork, will entertain us with his Lego skills in June. Watch for more updates about June and July.