Let’s greet each day with a true sense of wonder

Ellen Emery

In recent columns, I have mentioned how much I love to receive Christmas cards and greetings from family and friends.

The notes we received this year and family photos were marvelous.

Each was so meaningful and touching, connecting the writer with the recipient through handwritten messages and a sharing of lives that have been disconnected during the pandemic.

“So nice to be remembered, especially this year,” was the handwritten response on a card received.

The gentleman who had sent the card had received my note sent a few days earlier.

I remembered those heartfelt words this week as I saw a change in the mail received at our Bombay home.

For months now, we have received stacks of catalogs, magazines and literally stacks of wonderful cards and notes.

This week, the only mail received on Monday was a catalog I had never ordered from before and that I had no interest in even looking through and a letter addressed to “Occupant”!

As I thought about the change in mail received, I wondered why we only connected with our family members and friends though cards sent and letters written during the Christmas season.

Wouldn’t a dear friend want to receive wishes of joy and good will on a cold, wind chilled filled January day?

The words of my dear friend, who lives hours away, came to mind.

“So nice to be remembered,” I was told.

Wouldn’t it be nice to be remembered in January or perhaps even in February or March, too or even perhaps in the middle of the summer?

I hope you haven’t put your address book away (although I was told no one has an address book anymore — only contacts in a phone!).

Take your address listing and send a card, perhaps a post card from Massena.

I found delightful post cards of Springs Park — what fun to share Massena with our friends with a simple note of wonderful wishes on a January morning.

I hope you will take time this week to connect with others — via the postal service.

Surprise someone with a warm “Hello” written on a card with good wishes for the new year — or good wishes on a Wednesday morning.

Let’s start a new trend of “connection” cards — connections that will last throughout the year.

BIRTHDAY WISHES

Our neighbor Keith Edwards will celebrate his birthday Monday.

It seems to me this is a milestone year — time for a celebration!

Keith and his lovely wife, Pat, are terrific neighbors. How grateful we are that they are just next door!

Coffee with Keith and Pat is always a joy.

My warmest wishes, Keith, for a wonderful day and marvelous birthday this year.

AND ON TUESDAY

If I remember correctly, Pat McKeown will celebrate her birthday Tuesday.

When I first met her, she was the editor of the then-Massena Observer.

Visits to the office on Main Street were marvelous.

The office was a gathering place on a Tuesday or Thursday morning for a discussion of the events of the day.

How grateful I am that Editor Pat McKeon had a plan for extended coverage, which involved this columnist, who at that time became a correspondent.

What an absolute joy it has been to share the news of the area in which I live.

Have a terrific day on Tuesday, Pat. Happy Birthday!

HOUSePLANT APPRECIATION

Guests on the morning television news programs featured plant experts as National Houseplant Appreciation Day was celebrated.

I smiled as The Gardener walked through our living room with his watering can and plants as each one in our home was cared for.

There are a few plants in our home that could be described as houseplants.

But I don’t believe any of them would fit into the category of providing atmosphere as the television gardeners suggested.

National Houseplant Appreciation Day, we were told, provides us with the perfect opportunity to brighten up our home with a lovely plant.

Houseplants, the experts told viewers, would bring a splash of green into our homes.

The television gardeners suggested indoor houseplants would provide beauty in our homes all year.

The plants in our home generally are in preparation for the summer garden.

Seeds were ordered this weekend with sweet potato plants already reaching skyward.

There is a difference, too, in our home now.

Since our feline friend, Tigger, arrived, we soon learned he loves to eat plants or play in the dirt.

Every “houseplant” in our living room is now in a hanging basket.

The plants for garden planting are hidden from Tigger’s view in our guest bedroom.

The Gardener honored National Houseplant Appreciation Day by caring for each plant in our home.

There are several that would be considered houseplants — a Christmas cactus, poinsettias given by dear friends and a spider plant

The Gardener rescued from my care (or lack thereof).

The spider plant now fills a bedroom window — it is decorative and does add beauty to our home.

Most of the plants that will be planted and nurtured in the next few months, though, won’t be decorative as suggested by the television gardeners.

There will be no fancy glass containers with the soil covered in tiny stones or shells.

Each one will grow under the care of our in-house Gardener and be planted outside in a few months in the garden near the bee hives.

As the crops are harvested, we will enjoy the benefits of National Houseplant Appreciation Day — but not by arranging them artistically as an “impressive indoor garden,” but we will enjoy the produce harvested from the plants cared for throughout the winter months.

How delicious the fresh tomatoes will be — beans, strawberries, blueberries and carrots, too.

I am glad there is a day celebrating houseplants.

But I am far more grateful the houseplants in our home are cared for by The Gardener and will give us great joy during the warmer months.

THOUGHT FOR THE WEEK

“What good is the warmth of summer without the cold of winter to give it sweetness?”

— John Steinbeck

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