THE SEASON OF THANKSGIVING 2015 IS HERE – No holiday is as American as Thanksgiving which actually had its origins on American soil in 1492 when Christopher Columbus set foot in America and thanked God for sparing his life. Over 200 years later, Pilgrims celebrated Thanksgiving on American soil. Now, almost 400 years later, here we are celebrating Thanksgiving 2015 on American soil. No other holiday in America is so taken for granted as Thanksgiving. At this special time of year we need to recollect our thoughts and turn them to thanks to God to be living in such a blessed land with so much to be thankful for in the year of our Lord 2015.
ENJOYING THE ATMOSPHERE OF THANKSGIVING – In these days leading up to Thanksgiving the air in Piedmont, NC has a distinct crispness about it as the mornings are white with frost. The trees have emptied their leave except for the mighty oaks. The dogwoods and nandenas are displaying red berries as they hint of the coming of Christmas. The woodlands now showcase the short-leaf pine, cedars and vines of honeysuckle in contrast to the gray bark of the tree trunk and limbs. Jack Frost has already painted the lawn a new color of tan and gray. The wind from the west blows leaves from one yard to another. This very season is call to slow down, relax, and reflect on all the reasons we should be thankful.
PURCHASING A CHRISTMAS TREE FOR THANKSGIVING – The week before Thanksgiving is a perfect time to purchase a Christmas cactus in full bloom in the color you prefer at the home improvement warehouse, hardware, nursery or Wal-Mart, and even some supermarkets. You can choose from red, pink, white, or orange. The best way to do the cactus is buy one in a small container filled with cactus potting medium as soon as you bring it home.
NORTHAMPTONS COUNTY COLLARD PATCH – Grandma’s collard patch in Northampton County resembled a row of hedges when Thanksgiving rolled around. On Tuesday of that week she would clean the black wash pot that she made lard and cracklings in and then scald it out; preparation for a pot full of collards for the next morning. She would pile wood around the pot and have more wood nearby. Next morning she would fire up the pot and add a huge Virginia country ham to the pot. This would cook until noon. She knew when it was done because the aroma would be all over the area. After removing the ham, she would add collards, let them cook down, add more until the pot was full. One Thanksgiving Eve, she would have cracking corn bread and collards greens. She always made enough cornbread and collard greens. She always made enough cornbread for dressing on Thanksgiving.
A TABLE DISPLAY FOR THANKSGIVING – a Thanksgiving table display that is not only pretty but edible can be part of the dining room table by adding Pilgrim and Indian center pieces along with harvest colored votive candles and turkey centerpieces with scattered candy corn and crème pumpkins and some Hershey harvest mix kisses around the base of the display.
KEEP RECYCLING DURING THE HOLIDAYS – From now until New Year’s will be a busy time in generating trash. We can keep a lot of trash from the bins by recycling cans, glass jars, plastic cartons and bottles, cardboard, cartons of milk, newspaper, and plastic bags. You will be surprised at how much waste one household generates.
CHRISTMAS CACTUS PLANTS MAKE GOOD CHRISTMAS GIFTS – You can now purchase Christmas cactus in full bloom at Lowes Foods, Wal-Mart, Home Depot, Lowes Home Improvement, and Food Lion in some locations. They cost less than five dollars in medium containers. All you will need to do to make them a Christmas gift is wrap the pot with red foil and a festive bow. The cactus comes with blooms of red, pink, coral, or white. This is a gift that will give for many Christmases to come. Christmas cactus can be purchased at florist shops, but will cost more than five dollars!
Ray Baird has been providing gardening tips to the community for years and can be reached at 336-969-9350 or at B.Sylvia1946@windstream.net.