Archive | December, 2009

Community Happenings

Beaujolais & More Wine and Food Tasting – November 19th
Denton Civic Center, from 5:30 – 7:30 p.m. Tickets are $25.00.

Food provided by: The Abbey Inn, Babe’s Chicken Dinner House, Sanger, Burgundy, Cafe China, Cafe Du Luxe, Chipotle Mexican Grill, The Cupboard Café, Denton Country Club, El Guapo’s, Extreme Cuisine Catering, Fremaux’s Metropolitan Catering, Fuzzy’s Taco Shop, iuseppe’s Italian Restaurant, Hannah’s Off The Square, Hot Box Pizza, Kolache Haven, Miguelito’s, Palio’s Pizza Café, RG Burgers & Grill, Ravelin Baking Company, Rooster’s Roadhouse, Siam Off The Square, Sweet Basil, Sweetwater Grill & Tavern, Thai Ocha, Verde Catering@ UNT, Wildhorse Grill at Robson Ranch, and The Wildwood Inn.

Wine provided by Metzler’s Food & Beverage.

Beaujolais Nouveau is a young red wine made in the Beaujolais region of France, where the beverage accounts for half of the region’s production. While most red wines improve with age, Beaujolais Nouveau is all about freshness. Most producers race to deliver the first of the vintage to celebrations throughout France and the world and ship at midnight on the third Thursday of November. The fresh wine finds its way to its Denton distributer, Roy Metzler, and the annual Beaujolais & More that benefits The Campus Theatre. For more information, contact the box office, 940-382-1915.

Let There Be Lights!

If you are looking for some very merry and bright in the holiday season, check out some of these nearby homes and communities who host mega lighting and decoration treats for families to enjoy!

Christmas at the Goods (Tyler) – christmasatthegoods.com
Christmas on Wild Oak (Frisco) – christmasonwildoak.com
Gordon Lights (Plano) – gordonlights.com
Kindla Christmas – kindlachristmas.com
Lights on Harbor (The Colony) – LightsOnHarbor.com
McKinney Christmas – mckinneychristmas.com
Mesquite Christmas – mesquitechristmas.com
Pharr Christmas (Farmers Branch) – pharrschristmas.com
Trykoski Christmas (Frisco) – trykoskichristmas.com
Whetstone Lights (Corinth) – whetstonelights.com

Reindeer Romp Fun Run and Family Walk – December 4th

4.2 mile run and a 2.5 mile walk at Southlakes Park. Check in between 6:30 pm-7:30 pm, race starts at 7:30 pm.  Bounce house and craft area for the children during the race. Each runner will receive a goodie bag, t-shirt and snack/drinks at the end of the race. For more information, call 940-349-8731.

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Just Say Ahh…

by Taryn McColpin

Ahhh, November…For almost two months now, Ann has noticed the Christmas wares in the aisles of local stores, and there are two months to go until the date itself. Her heart sinks each day when she does the necessary shopping for her family, portioning out her food stamps and the tips she received at her waitressing job, and every passing night brings more sleepless hours of worry and despair.  The aspect of the looming holidays holds no joy for Ann, only dread.

Ann is a single mother of two young children, 7-year-old Toby and 4-year-old Tina.  Suddenly alone since the desertion of her husband early last year, she’s been struggling from paycheck to paycheck for many months now.  Ann has no family able to help her, and she has run the stand-in-line-and-wait gamut to receive the minimum amount of State Aid.  Her job, even when her tips are good, barely pays the bills, and there is no extra money for anything but necessities.

Daycare for the kids seems to cost almost as much as Ann makes, and she has to fight the anger she feels when the Aid Department counselor suggests she take a second job…doesn’t he see that she would have to pay double daycare if she did? The relative affluence of the other children leaves her own little ones yearning for what they can’t have. Toby would like to play T-Ball, but Ann has to bear the disappointment in his eyes when she explains that she can’t afford the equipment. Tina asks for dolls like the ones the other little girls have, and is too young to understand why Ann can’t buy them for her.

Ann’s story is just a glimpse of what faces the population that we don’t see: the working poor, the struggling, the desperate.  These are not the homeless illuminated by the media, these are not the welfare-milkers. These are fellow humans who are in a place where, but for the grace of the fates, each of us could find ourselves. Fortunes and circumstances ebb and flow, and we who are at the top of our personal tide of luck would do well to remember that Ann’s story could be ours in the blink of an eye. Economic downturns have left a good percentage of Americans one paycheck away from disaster.

Look into your heart and find the compassion to help Ann, her children, and the thousands of local residents like them.  The Denton County Toy Store, which benefits the needy children of Denton County at Christmastime, is a place to start.  Toy drop-off boxes are in every Denton County office, as well as the Toy Store’s home site, Asbury Methodist Church.

The annual Denton ABATE Memorial Toy Run will be held on November 19th. It begins at noon at the Stonehill Center at I-35 and North Loop 288, drops off toys at Asbury Church, and continues to the American Legion in Lake Dallas with a food drive benefiting the Lake Cities Community Food Bank. All proceeds from the party after the Run benefit the Toy Store, as do contributions from ABATE members yearlong.  Everyone is welcome, bikes or cars. Join us in helping Ann, and the many others like her, provide a decent Christmas for the children.

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A Kiss Under the Mistletoe

by Reese Grey

Meet me under the mistletoe…being kissed under the mistletoe has been a Christmas tradition for more than a thousand years. But mistletoe is not only associated with a gentle kiss, it has a lore all its own.

To the ancient Scandinavians, mistletoe symbolized peace. Enemies meeting under the mistletoe would declared a truce until the following day and disgruntled spouses kissed and made up under the greenery.

The Druids believed mistletoe possessed magical powers. Their priests cut the plant with golden sickles and gathered the trimmings on white cloth so the plant would never touch the earth and lose its enchantment. The French didn’t like it. They said mistletoe was cursed because it grew on the wood from which the cross of Christ was made and that it was doomed to be a rootless parasite forever.

In the Middle Ages, mistletoe was hung from ceilings in Europe to ward off evil, or it was dangled over doors to prevent the entrance of witches.  If mistletoe was suspended over a crib, the child was said to be safe from kidnapping. Viking lore describes the goddess of love, Frigga, who commanded that  each plant and animal promise not to kill her son Baldur. Unfortunately one day she forgot the mistletoe plant and Baldur was killed by a spear.  Those white berries on the mistletoe?  They are said to have been created from her tears.

When her son returned to life, Frigga proclaimed the mistletoe to be sacred. She kissed everyone who passed under it and decreed the plant should henceforth bring love. So go ahead. Kiss under the mistletoe, have fun doing it, and give a little nod to Frigga for starting a very enjoyable custom.

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Holiday Glamour

by Lindsey Kuntz

The Holidays are quickly coming upon us, and with sugar and spice just around the corner, now is the perfect time to give a quick update to that wardrobe of yours.

This time of festivities is full of sparkle and is all about the details.  With weekly gatherings of family and friends you’ll surely want to show off your fashion forward style; but don’t worry about spending hundreds of dollars on a complete new wardrobe, because this season’s looks can be updated with a dash of a few glitzy accessories.

Feel free this winter to up your glam appeal by taking your look retro.  Part your hair to the side and compliment it with loosely falling curls.  Add just a touch of red lipstick and you’ve instantly created that beloved retro look with a modern twist.  Afraid to be bold with a daring red pout?  Try a jeweled brooch in your hair.  Stick it at the base of a pony tail or use it to pull back a small section of hair from your face to give a festive feeling to your ensemble.

Pearls are back and these classics have never felt so decorative before.  Layer up to three strands of necklaces for a chunkier look or keep your look simple with a plain pearl ring and earrings.  Adding bold metallic colors to your outfit will make a sensual dramatic effect.  Choose a beaded and sequin dress or a pair of satrapy metallic heels.  Throw on some shine and luster with a satin blouse or just add a chunky jeweled belt to some dark jeans or a dress.  Whatever the occasion this Holiday

Season, pay attention to your accessories; they’ll make you look as good as the wrapped presents under the Christmas Tree!

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Gainesville Glistens This Holiday Season

Victorian Stroll, historic homes, quaint downtown shops and scrumptious eateries are just a few of the holiday treats just waiting to be experienced in Gainesville this holiday season.  The Gainesville Area Chamber of Commerce Annual Lighted Christmas Parade boasts over 50 magically-lit floats with a visit from a surprise guest at the end!  Jim Goldsworthy State Farm Insurance is sponsoring Butterfield Stage’s production of the beloved holiday classic Mr. Scrooge the Musical at the historic downtown State Theatre for the enjoyment of young and old alike.  While you’re here, take the kids to visit the Frank Buck Zoo and play at Leonard Park.  Wonder where to start?  Hop aboard our vintage trolley and let her show you the sites.  Take the short drive up 35 and come get a taste of what Gainesville has to offer this holiday season!

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Who’s YOUR Farmer?

by Sue Newhouse

This is the third in a series on local farms in and nearby Denton County

Traci grew up on a farm in Wisconsin that was established in 1827. It was there that she inherited her parent’s passion and love of farming. So it seemed perfectly reasonable that when Traci’s mother became ill a few years ago,  for Traci and her husband, Todd to find a couple of those doe-eyed, brown and white Jersey calves to pick up her spirits.  That was in 1999. Traci’s mother is no longer with them, but you can still feel her spirit on their family dairy in Krum, Texas.

Dairy farming is a very demanding, stressful occupation. It requires someone be on the property to milk every 12 hours, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. Todd works off the farm during the day leaving Traci to manage the operation. Someone has to be available morning and night for milking the 8 Jersey cows currently producing 20-25 gallons each day. Shannon, a part time relief milker has helped out to give the couple an occasional night off, but a recently recruited full time farm intern – Mandy, has been able to give them a much needed break. Just returning from 10 days in Wisconsin visiting family and friends, as well as attending the annual World Dairy Expo in Madison, it’s the 1st time they’ve been away from the farm in 3 years.

This is a raw milk dairy. The unpasteurized milk & cream are sold on the farm directly to its members. The pasteurization process slows down the microbial growth by destroying both the good and the bad natural occurring bacteria.  The proponents of raw milk claim that by not pasteurizing it retains more of its beneficial qualities.

There’s no question that these are happy cows .They’re pastured and fed extra hay when needed and because of the healthy life-style, there’s no need for any hormones or added antibiotics.

Cleanliness is an essential aspect of the milking process.  The cow’s udders are cleaned with antibacterial solutions and wipes ensuring the most sanitary transfer of milk from cow to milk jug.  The cows are milked one at a time using a single cow milking machine known as a bucket milker.  From the bucket milker it’s transferred to a holding container where it’s bottled into 1 gallon jugs for sale. If there’s an excess of daily milk, Traci will run it through a cream separator to offer members pints of wonderfully thick cream.  They always sell only fresh milk daily.

At the present time, membership is full. New members come to them because they know someone who’s already a member.  The next time you talk with your friends, you might ask them where they’re getting their milk!

For more local farm info try:
www.SlowFoodUSA.org
www.LocalHarvest.org
www.NaturallyGrown.org
www.EatGreenDFW.com

If you know of great farm in your community, email:  suenewhouse@yahoo.com

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