Oh, look at the camellias in bloom

Published 12:28 pm Saturday, December 5, 2015

Peeping through my Venetian blind, I looked upon camellias a-bloom – pink perfection, pink debutant, Christmas, Betty Sheffield,

“It’s December, for sure,” I said to myself. “The camellias are in bloom!”

Then I hummed that old song.

“Christmas is coming! Geese are getting fat.

Please put a penny in the old man’s hat.

If you haven’t got a penny,

A half penny will do.

If you haven’t got a half penny,

Then God bless you!”

The Mildred Hart Sunday School class of First Baptist Church began the Christmas season December l with a party at Chen’s.

Barbara Linder presided.

The class teacher, Linda Finlin, worded the blessing.

The lady members and their guests enjoyed the abundant buffet offered by Chen’s.

There followed a program by the Copeland twins, Madison and Robert.

Robert read from the Bible about the births of John and Jesus and emphasized that nothing is impossible with God.

Then the brothers led in a round of Christmas carols, followed by their reading of “A Visit from St. Nicholas” by Clement C. Moore.

Mrs. Linder asked for Christmas memories from the group, and many a merry tale was told!

Class member, Bea Miller, unable to be present, sent a basket she had made of pine straw, a gift by her for the whole class to present to their Sunday-School teacher, Linda Finlin.

Pots of red poinsettias, which had decorated the tables, were given to the Copeland twins as a thank you for their program.

Attending were R. K. and Rose Marie (vice-president) Price, Barbara Linder, Irene Butler, David and Linda Finlin, Charley Cope, Margaret Eiland (assistant secretary/treasurer), Vivian Hickey (president), David and Linda Finlin, Nancy Cochron (Vivian’s daughter), Lucy (Price) Martin, Kevin Price (Lucy’s son), Frank and Tina Moore, the Copeland twins, and their mother, Betty Copeland.

When one is away from “the Dimple of Dixie” for a time and then returns, he is struck by the beauty of Old Andalusia, especially when she is dressed for Christmas in her best wreaths and bows, her snowflakes and Christmas windows, her swags and candles, her reds and greens.

Seen out and about this week were Nathan Shakespeare, Greg Mayberry, Jan White, Pennye Anderson, Bill Law (whose daughter, Allison Griffin, has written an article, “Get Your Phones Ready for Better Christmas Photos,” in Alabama Living), Jess and Sharon Jarvis, Dwight Crigger and his son Carl, Betty Harrelson Windham, Ricky Harrelson, Tim Stewart, Mike Stokes, Jimmy Williamson, Phil Danford, Larry Shaw, and Cindy Shaw.

Jo Driggers of Lexington, South Carolina, on her way to Andalusia, stopped off in Montgomery, Alabama, to visit her cousins, Cecil Wingard, 96, and his sons, Joe, Bill, Paul, and Dave.

Jo was on her way to join “Miss Betty” Mitchell’s bus tour to Nashville, which departed from “the Dimple of Dixie.”

Colonel Covington was overheard to say, “We can’t make fun of the French anymore.”

Governor Jeb Bush in a television advertisement said that under his administration in Florida that “children started to learn” again.

I’m sure that children were learning long before Governor Bush was born.

Mrs. Gotrocks of Greenville and I were out driving, looking for camellias, when several cars zoomed past us; and we were doing 40!

“Where’s the fire?” I asked.

The Wesley Thomasson family celebrated Thanksgiving Day with their annual dinner at the home of Kyle and Carole Thomasson on Blake Pruitt Road.

The fellowship was staged in Kyle’s shop with an attached picnic pavilion.

Those present included Roy and Audrey (Thomasson) Wilson and their son, Chris, and family from Omaha, Nebraska, and from Hartsville, Tennessee; Curtis and Margie Thomasson and their daughter, Christy, and family; and Curtis and Margie’s son, Clay, and family from Oxford, Mississippi; and Kyle and Carole Thomasson and their daughter, Holly, and her guest from Montgomery.

Special guests were Carole’s brother and family from Hartland, Wisconsin.

The traditional meal was plentiful and enjoyed by all. The adults visited, shared memories, and took walks while the children played games and rode battery-operated cars.

The Covington Historical Society met the evening of November 19 in the Dixon Memorial of the Andalusia Public Library.

John Vick was overheard to say, “To borrow from Will Rogers, I never met a dessert I didn’t like!”

Dr. Morgan Moore, president, called the 412th meeting to order.

Bill Law offered the blessing.

A buffet was enjoyed. Each member had brought a dish for a feast.

Following the meal, all stood to pledge loyalty to the American flag.

Nancy Robbins, secretary, presented her minutes.

George Harmon Proctor, treasurer, distributed his financial statement.

Sue Wilson, vice-president, gave a report on the museum.

Yearbooks were distributed. They had been assembled by Norma King, Barbara Powell, and Sue Wilson.

This year’s officers volunteered to serve again in 2016.

The society does not plan to meet in December.

Sue Wilson chaired a program called “Show and Tell,” with a special emphasis on Thanksgiving.

Thagard Colvin shared an old telephone system for the Conecuh National Forest.

Nancy Robbins recounted a Thanksgiving memory.

Harmon Proctor recalled attending two Thanksgiving dinners because of two sets of grandparents. He showed a “photo” of one set of his ancestors on their 50th wedding anniversary and china from their 50th wedding anniversary.

John Vick shared a stock certificate and an 1853 Wells-Fargo letter.

Margie Thomasson shared a Thanksgiving memory.

Taylor Lawson, granddaughter of Linda Castleberry of Red Level, told of the sentimental value of a stuffed monkey.

Robert Copeland shared stories of his neighbors on Stanley Avenue, Cecil and Lucy Miller. He said Miss Lucy was a “firecracker.”

Robert also showed a Kentucky Colonel certificate, naming his dad one.

Thanksgiving memories were recounted by Joe Wingard, Bill Law, Irene Butler, Curtis Thomasson, John Vick, and Linda Castleberry.

Anyone wishing to join fellow graduates of Samford University for an annual meeting should call Joe Wingard.

The Pilot Club’s annual Pancake and Sausage Day is today till noon at the Kiwanis Building.

Once again, I ask the citizens of Andalusia to join the Covington Historical Society and pay its annual dues of $25 to help preserve the history of our county, whether you attend meetings or not. Mail to CHS, P.O. Box 1582, Andalusia, Alabama 36420.

The mysterian is the member of the AHS Class of 1926, still living.

Born the last two weeks (I did not write a column last Saturday) were John Harvard, for whom America’s first college is named; William Blake, an English poet; Louisa May Alcott, American author of Little Women; John Bunyan, English author of Pilgrim’s Progress; Mark Twain, American author of The Adventures of Tom Sawyer, The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn, The Prince and the Pauper, Life on the Mississippi, and A Connecticut Yankee in King Arthur’s Court; Winston Churchill, an English prime minister who led England to survive Hitler’s invasion; Thomas Carlyle, Scottish historian; and Walt Disney, creator of Mickey Mouse, Disneyland, Disney World, and a thousand wholesome memories.

Now, gentle reader, allow me to join Buffalo Bob Smith in encouraging each of us to be in his place of worship this weekend, Lord willing.

Fare thee well.