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Helping Our Community 2020

downtown Medicine LodgeAs we come to the end of 2020, everything looks different! We are living life behind masks as we go about our day-to-day activities. Instead of meeting the gaze of those passing by, eyes seem to be cast downward as we hurry through what we need to do. Instead of relaxing into conversations with others, many avoid the luxury of that connection in fear of being the target of a sharp tongue, fueled by hate.

Doubt and uncertainly casts a shadow on the upcoming holidays. Should you or shouldn’t you travel, invite, or gather together like you do every other year? What is the best for those you love? We all individually have to ascertain the answers to these questions.

Things are different; maybe we need to roll with it the best way we can and make some unique memories. If you can’t be with the ones you love on Thanksgiving, write them a note and tell them just how thankful you are to have them in your life. Maybe take advantage of social media and modern technology and let it be a part of your holidays. Turn your imagination loose and let it gallop around the pasture that is fenced in by Covid-19 restrictions. Although the grass may be greener on the other side, it is definitely safer inside the pasture.

There is a group that has gathered together to recreate the Medicine Lodge Area Chamber of Commerce and they are amazing. All of them are extremely busy in their personal life with jobs and families. They still meet and plan activities and events to enrich the lives of those who live in this community. They have a couple of things on their calendar for this month. There will be a Community Work Day on Friday, November 20, 2020 at 2:00 PM. Everyone is meeting behind the old middle school building and working on setting up the light displays.

They are also sponsoring a Christmas Open House on Sunday, November 22, 2020 from 2:00 to 6:00 PM. Your support and participation in these community activities will nourish your sense of community spirit while helping and encouraging the sponsors and vendors. Lincoln Library will be doing a Story Time that day from 3:00 to 3:30 PM.

Activate your common sense and take the suggested precautions! If you are sick, stay at home! If you know of someone sick, make a porch drop of food and other necessities, books, magazines, or other luxuries. Call those who are sick and offer to run errands or assist them in other ways. Check on people who are alone a lot. Mental health is as important during this stressful time as physical health.

If we all do what we can to make our corner of the world better and take care of those around us, we can make it through this! Yes, things are different, but it doesn’t mean that we can’t squeeze a whole lot of positive out of the negative and make life better for others and ourselves! One thing I think we can all agree on is that we can be extremely thankful that there are only a few weeks left in 2020.

Word of the Week: The word of the week is “excogitate”! The word is a verb and is pronounced /eksˈkäjəˌtāt/. The word means to plan, to think out, to devise. Some problems are harder to solve and thus takes longer to excogitate a solution.

Failed Expectations

girl in pretty dress reading book on lawnIt is not being pessimistic to acknowledge that 2020 has been a rather difficult year for everybody; it is being realistic! There are times that life gets a little overwhelming and you have to try to fit in a few moments of escape time into the chaos!

Back in July when I was feeling a little stretched, I carefully planned a day to celebrate my birthday in a manner that would sooth my soul, revive my spirit, rest my body and bring peace to my mind. I chose a book, stocked up on comfort food, and made sure there was Dr. Pepper in the house. I decided to go with a middle school book. I didn’t want a wild roller coaster ride; I just wanted a heart-warming story to mesh with the goals of my day.

I curled up on the couch with my dog and cats that were all in the latter stages of aging out of life. I read the entire book that day and was so emotionally angry by the time I finished the book, I couldn’t sleep that night. The dog, the best character in the book, died. I finished the book and sat with my old animals and sobbed for a long length of time. I was angry. I wanted to email the author and let her know that if someone or something had to die, it should have been one of the characters who had caused the death of the dog, not the dog! After the emotional storm passed and logic slowly returned, I realized that it was her story and her right to write it as she wished. I also realized that I was upset because my expectations of a perfectly wonderful day were obliterated by the book I chose!

I see it all the time in here. Looking for a getaway, a patron checks out a book and that book does not live up to their expectations. This has the tendency to derail the reader from life’s railroad track, and they have to search for a side track to sit and wait out the emotional upheaval! Although, I know that sounds a little theatrical to nonreaders, readers who get inside the books they read know exactly what I’m talking about!

Failed expectations do not affect only readers; I’m guessing that very few people can say that life has lived up to all of their expectations. You can’t give up! You have to carefully read the review of the book, choose to read it with hope that it will nourish the areas in your life that are hungry, take responsibility for where it takes you, and go for the gamble knowing everything is not going to happen according to your expectations. The same can be said for life! Don’t ever stop reading books or living life; just adjust your anticipations and expectations, if 2020 hasn’t already done it for you!

Word of the Week: The word of the week is “querulous”! The word is an adjective and is pronounced /ˈkwer(y)ələs/. The word means complaining in a petulant or whining manner. No one can be happy all of the time, but you don’t have to be querulous.

Halloween Parade Plans 2020

boy in superman costumeSaturday is Halloween and Saturday is the Halloween parade that starts at 4:00 PM. We can do this safely and have a splendiferous time while doing so! So, the plans are that we gather on First Street on the sidewalk that runs from the door of the library west towards the City Office. Each family will walk together with six feet in between families. We will do the parade single file instead of the usual conglomeration. Not only will this be safer, this will make it so much easier to view all of the costumes and be such an advantage for the spectators.

This is an ideal way that we can do something for the children in our community. We will be outside in the fresh air with room to social distance. Most all children love to dress up and play make-believe and many times that include masks. If your health is compromised in any way, please do not participate. Watching the parade while sitting in your vehicle may be the perfect solution for you. Please dress appropriately for the irrationally acting weather we experience here in Kansas. If your Halloween mask is not as substantial as the masks worn to school, the Barber County Health Department suggests wearing a mask under a costume mask.

Between the cloudy skies that have been hanging over Medicine Lodge and the dark cloud that COVID-19 brings to the scene, everyone could use a few laughs and a good time. Come on out and walk with us!

We not only still accept candy, but we get extremely excited to see it walk through the door! The parade is on a Saturday, which means more children and their families will attend. Children are tired of all the COVID-19 restrictions and are looking for fun things to do, which means more children and their families will attend. The weather is supposed to be pretty accommodating, which means more children and their families will attend. With all this in mind, we are planning on 250 children. We are so grateful to those who have given; we have enough for 10 pieces of candy for each bag. I would love to be able to double that number. We are thankful to those at Arrowhead West who bag the collected treats for us.

There will be further activities after the parade at 5:00 PM at the Assembly of God Church at 701 North Iliff Street (Highway 281).

Word of the Week: The word of the week is “splendiferous”! The word is an adjective and is pronounced splen-dif-er-uhs. The word means splendid, magnificent, and wonderful. Driving down Highway 160 offers a splendiferous view of the Gyp Hills.