Saturday, December 31, 2011

For Auld Lang Syne

Tis another year gone by, it went in the blink of eye.  As is our New Year's Tradition, we went to the movies to see Sherlock Holmes and then dinner at the Oasis.  Parke loves their chicken parm.  Anyway - ever wonder about the song Auld Lang Syne. Well I did - and here is what I found.

The poet, Robert Burns sent a copy of the original song to the Scots Musical Museum with the remark, “The following song, an old song, of the olden times, and which has never been in print, nor even in manuscript until I took it down from an old man". Some of the lyrics were indeed "collected" rather than composed by the poet; the ballad "Old Long Syne" printed in 1711 by James Watson shows considerable similarity in the first verse and the chorus to Burns' later poem, and is almost certainly derived from the same "old song". It is a fair to guess that the rest of the poem Burns himself wrote.

There is some doubt as to whether the melody used today is the same one Burns originally intended, but it is widely used in Scotland and in the rest of the world.

Singing the song on  New Year's Eve very quickly became a Scots custom that soon spread to other parts of the British Isles. As Scots (not to mention English, Welsh and Irish people) emigrated around the world, they took the song with them.

Canadian band leader Guy Lombardo (gosh I remember watching him every New Years Eve with my Grandmother, that was BDC, Before Dick Clark) is often credited with popularising the use of the song at New Year’s celebrations in America, through his annual broadcasts on radio and television, beginning in 1929. The song became his trademark. In addition to his live broadcasts, Lombardo recorded the song more than once.

Here is the best part - here in the song phonetically written as the Scots would of pronounced it -

Shid ald akwentans bee firgot,
an nivir brocht ti mynd?
Shid ald akwentans bee firgot,
an ald lang syn*?
Fir ald lang syn, ma jo (or ma dear), fir ald lang syn, wil tak a cup o kyndnes yet, fir ald lang syn.
An sheerly yil bee yur pynt-staup!
an sheerly al bee myn!
An will tak a cup o kyndnes yet,
fir ald lang syn.
We twa hay rin aboot the braes,
an pood the gowans fyn;      (what?)
Bit weev wandert monae a weery fet,
sin ald lang syn.
We twa hay pedilt in the burn,
fray mornin sun til dyn;
But seas between us bred hay roard
sin ald lang syn.
An thers a han, my trustee feer!
an gees a han o thyn!
And we’ll tak a richt gude-willie-waucht,
fir ald lang syn.
An wit that it a nodder day in Catasauqua fir auld lang syn -   Happy New Year to you!!!!

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Christmas is over

Well, another Christmas is over.  It started like every Christmas, my mom more excited about Christmas than me.  I am sure she was up at 5:00 AM and she was secretly wishing I would get up so she could open her presents.  If she was sending me wake up vibes it worked because I had my clock set for 7pm instead of  AM but I woke up anyway.  So we opened presents and had some laughs.  She likes her sock monkey hat, I made her wear it to church. 

Then after Church it was home again and waiting for the grandchildren.  That's always a whirl.  I was worried I didn't get them enough, but they seemed to be enjoying everything I got them, and now I even think Bey Blades are cool.

After they were gone it was quiet, too quiet perhaps.  My mom retreated to her room and Parke was asleep snoring way to loud for me to enjoy TV so I retreated to my bedroom for perhaps my favorite and most unusual Christmas Movie, Bell, Book and Candle with Jimmy Stewart and Kim Novak. 

The film opens during the Christmas holiday season. Greenwich Village Witch Gillian Holroyd (Kim Novak)  a free spirit with a penchant for going barefoot, has been unlucky in love and restless in life. Beside Stewart and Novak, it also stars Jack Lemmon, Hermoine Gingold, Elsa Lanchaster and Ernie Kovaks.

After that movie I watched Elf.  I found out that RCN has Holiday movies on Video On Demand, and I  see that Scrooged is on there, and I haven't seen that one yet this year, so that might be next.

I feel a little bit melancholy, the holiday is over, I am tired and perhaps a little burned out.  It always seems like so much work for one day. 

I was reminded today that I might think Christmas is difficult with a family - it can even more difficult without.  The thing is - if we believe in Christmas, then we are all of the same family.

Oh, there is one thing, I also believe in Santa, I swear with my hand to God that once I saw sleigh prints and reindeer hoof prints outside my window when I was a kid.  This morning I work up with a strange mark on my face.  I believe this Grandma might of got run over by a reindeer last night and that just might have been an incriminating hoof print.  Just saying.

Well Merry Christmas to you.  I am gonna settle down with a bottle of Pinot Grigio and toast the Baby Jesus.  Happy Birthday Big Guy.

And with's another (Christmas) Day in Catasauqua.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas Eve Day

This morning we were having breakfast at Oasis when a couple came in and sat down across from us.  The lady looked over and smiled a big grin at me and I just smiled back, then I remembered, I was in my usual holiday festive dress, green shirt, with red scarf, giant green lightbulb earrings and since I didn't do my hair yet, a Christmas headband. 

If you know me, or even have read this blog lately you know I am quite festive.  I just finished a batch of chocolate chip cookies, I have overdosed on Hallmark and ABC Family movies, wrapped all the presents and am ready for the Holiday to begin.  But there is one thing you might not know.  I don't really like Christmas.

I love what it stands for, the Baby Jesus, God's everlasting gift to us.  I enjoy church, and it is because of this that I make it through the holidays.  You see, as a child the holidays were glossy on the outside but inside not so much.  I couldn't understand as a little child what was going on.  Christmas was quite the party at my Grandparent's house where I grew up.  It was full of people Christmas Night and later on Christmas Day.  Every year I did the same thing Christmas morning, creeping down the stairs  really, really slow and then I would see it.  All the toys.  Mine were never wrapped, they were out displayed like a store.  I would look at everything, usually by myself.  No one every got up to much much later. 

As I watch Christmas Vacation with Chevy Chase last night, I realized that's more of what Christmas was like at my house.  Every Christmas eve I would hear fighting and shouting when I was little and in bed.  One year there was a lot of cursing, I wanted to come down to see what was going on, but my Grandmother made me go back to bed.  She said my grandfather had just cut himself.  Yeah, on my stove and kitchen set for Christmas.  You know it was made of metal back then, not the nice plastic of today.  When I got older and stayed up later, I found the fighting and shouting was real fighting and shouting.  It seemed to me, that if you combine Christmas, family and lot of beer, that's what you get. 

Gee, I was cute, notice the metal kitchen set to my right
There were some memorable moments.   The year I got a plastic guitar that my Grandfather thought he could play and ended up cutting himself up horribly and bleeding everywhere.  The year my Grandmother pulled a butcher knife on my Aunt's boyfriend.  Actually that's a fond memory, still makes me laugh, he said to her - go ahead I'll piss on your grave when you dead, ah the joy of Christmas Spirit. There was the year I woke up to find a relative asleep next to my presents, found out later she was thrown out of her house Christmas Eve, lots of fighting there to.    When I got older I learned to leave Christmas eve. 

One special Christmas Eve, I got engaged.  Bless Big Bob, he did make it special, it was a scavenger hunt all over his house ending with an engagement ring during the annual Werner Christmas Party.  What a special and happy night it was,  that is until I got home.  My grandmother (already two sheets to the wind)  accused me of having a planned engagement party at the Werner's and then promptly took a ring I had been wearing that she gave me for graduation, saying I didn't need it now.  I always say that I got nothing for my 13th & 16th birthdays, Confirmation and Graduation, because she took it all back whenever she was mad at me.  I got the last laugh though, I got most of it back after she died.

Speaking of that, a few years ago we discovered that my Grandmother was sick on Thanksgiving.  I told my cousin Sandy at the time, watch she will die on Christmas just to spite me.  Well, you guessed it she died on Christmas Eve and don't tell me she didn't plan it that way.  Just kidding I know she didn't well maybe I don't.

I know my bff,  Cathy,  is saying right now, Bev get over it, and I do after Christmas, and there are good memories to of this day.  I am blessed with wonderful Grandchildren - two of which were born 3 days after my grandmother died, making a sad time bright.  And even though I always feel a terrible foreboding this day I shove it back, and deck the hall with boughs of holly.   I wear the santa hat and read the Night Before Christmas.

But I know, most of all, that I am loved, and their is a light that shines bright in the darkness of the night this night even more than most, and that is the Baby Jesus, whose birthday we celebrate.  And I will tear up during Silent Night this year as I do every year and Christmas Spirit will fill my heart and make all the hurt just a memory again. 

So Merry Christmas, and if you have bad memories of this day, shove them back and make some good ones, Lord knows I try, and so should you and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, December 22, 2011

It's about Christmas

As I was sucked into Hallmark Movie Channel land last night, it got me thinking about Christmas Movies and televisions specials.  I love Christmas movies and I have been watching my share.  I have a TV on the third floor, so whenever I go up there to wrap presents I turn on Hallmark, Lifetime or ABCFamily.  I got all my wrapping finally done to "Annie Claus is Coming to Town" (loved it).  I also loved "Christmas Magic".

But let's not forget those kids shows, Prep and Landing is my new favorite. 

Now, let's take a moment to remember some holiday fun from the past.

1964 - Santa Claus Conquers the Martians -  1989 - Prancer (which ABC Family still shows) -  1961-Babes in Toyland (With Annette Funicello)  -  1977  Fat Albert's Christmas Special -  1978 - Twas the Night Before Christmas (from Rankin/Bass - its where the clock doesn't work) -  1977 - Bing Crosby's 42nd Annual Christmas Special (the one with David Bowie)  - 1977 - A Flintstone's Christmas - 1954 - White Christmas (MY FAVORITE and the best was seeing up at the Roxy in Northampton a couple of years ago on the big screen) 1979 - John Denver and the Muppets:  A Christmas Together  - 1962 - Mr. Magoo's Christmas Carol (gosh I loved that one) - 1970 - Santa Claus is Coming to Town (Fred Astaire tells the story - we have the Burgermeister and the Winter Warlock in this one)  1988 Scrooged (with Bill Murray - I love this one to - I haven't caught it this year yet) - 1969 - Frosty the Snowman -  1962 Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer (both Frosty and Rudolph still shown today)  1966 - How the Grinch stole Christmas - and the best 1965 - A Charlie Brown Christmas. 

It's hard to believe that Frosty, Charlie, Rudy, and the Grinch are all over 40 years old. 

And let's not forget those Mc Donald's commericals that featured Ronald that always made us cry. <heavy sigh>

Well, I guess that's enough memories for now, but like Frosty "I'll be back again someday".....and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011

My Grandmother's Cookie Recipe

Every year my Grandmother baked tons of cookies and stored them is really large cans and gave them as gifts during the holidays. I still carry on that tradition.  When she passed away a few years ago I was given her cook book where she wrote her recipes in. 

First let me tell you that the book is actually an account book which was to be used as a cash or day book journal.  So I find humor in that fact that she wrote in the front cover.  These are all very good receipts (instead of the word recipe)  She then wrote "This is grand-daughter Beverly receipt book after me."  HOWEVER, when she was mad at me once, she erased my name out of the book, then put someone else in, then erased them and put me back in.  Ah....fond family memories.

Anyway some of these receipts, oops recipes are really old, and sometimes use ingredients that I am not sure about.  A great example is the following recipe for - as she wrote it - A piece Christmas Cookies.  Actually Apees cookies are a cookie from the Philadelphia area and are of German, or Pennsylvania Dutch origins. 

So here it is:

1 cup of butter and 1 cup of Lard
2 lbs of Sugar
1 Large Can of Everyday Milk
2 teaspoons of soda
4 eggs
Pinch of salt, add flour to roll (which turns out to be a 5 pound bag roughly)   This must be rolled out and cut with cookie cutter.  Makes  1/2 to 1 can of cookies.

Let me tell you about the cans she used, they were huge potato chip cans (I still have one in the basement)  It makes a ton of cookies.  What I like about them, besides the taste is that they are easy to roll.  They make a thick cut out - they puff a little while baking.

Well all my cookies are packed up and ready to give away, but there are also some saved for Christmas Morning.  Plus I have one more batch to bake, chocolate chip that I will make Christmas Eve morning, for some reason we go through them fast.  Well, that's.....another day in Catasauqua.

Monday, December 19, 2011

Cookies, Cookies and more Cookies

I love to make cookies at Christmas.  It's practically a winter hobby.  Everyone has their favorites.  Parke loves my Chocolate Chips.  A few of my friends from Church and I love the famous "Better than Sex Cookies" which are white chocolate macadamia nut.  Missy, my daughter-in-law's sister likes chocolate with peanut butter chips. 

I just got done making up my own recipe for a new cookie.  This was something my Grandmother did a lot, but it's a first for me.  I haven't named the cookie yet, but it is a chocolate cookie with chocolate chips and then I dipped them in chocolate!  I haven't tasted them yet, they are cooling, so I don't even know if they are worthy of naming yet.  But if they are I  will have to remember to write the recipe down.

So here's what I made tons of Chocolate Chip cookies, Peanut Butter Cookies, Shortbreads, 2 different kinds of roll outs -  WAIT -SIDE NOTE - I just ate the chocolate chocolate cookie (before dipping it into the extra chocolate), OMG - its good - Parke says it doesn't even need the extra chocolate - but I said I wanted to make this one an event - not just a cookie.  Later I will try the cookie with the extra chocolate.

Any way where was I - oh yes, Peppermint Crunch cookies, Sugar Cookies. the Better than Sex Cookies, Chocolate with Peanut Butter Chips, Snickerdoodles,  and Forgotten Cookies. 

Well - time for me to finish up, and then to start packing up cookies for gifts.  If you are on my list, you'll be getting some, and if not......that's another day in Catasauqua

Thursday, December 15, 2011

A Lovely Tradition

Once upon a time, 3 lovely ladies, all teachers of Sunday School started a tradition that lasts until today.  Those three ladies entered their chariots and travelled over the river and through traffic until they reached the establishment of one called Perkins, and partaked of meal early in the morn.  At that time they discussed the Christmas Holiday and the play that the little children of the hamlet of Salem would put on for the fine towns folk. 

Now, more than 20 years later, 2 of the ladies, still lovely they are and haven't aged a bit, travel again to the same fine establishment along with anyone from the choir of Salem in the early morn this Saturday.

I love traditions and the holidays are packed with them.

We have, at my house, an unusual meal Christmas Eve and that is cheesesteaks that I make before going to Christmas Eve service.  It came from a sad event a few years ago.  My grandmother passed away Christmas Eve and the next day we really did not feel like preparing a Christmas Dinner, so I made cheesesteaks, because everytime I would ask Parke over the past years what he wanted for Christmas Dinner he would say "cheesesteaks". 

Your traditions may be a simple as hanging the stockings or attending Christmas services.  It could be reading the Night Before Christmas or from the Gospel of Luke.  Maybe you walk through the streets of Catasauqua singing Christmas Carols.

Even if you are alone I believe in traditions.  Don't let this Christmas slip by without dabbing into a little tradition from your past.  One time, a few years ago I was alone on Christmas morning, but there was a package under the tree from Santa Cathy Claus that she snuck into my house that was marked "do not open until Christmas".  I still have the tag and hang it at the top of my steps.  Yes, I am a sucker for Tradition.

So people of Catasauqua, hang the stockings, kiss under the mistletoe, spin the driedel, sing Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer, trim the tree, hang the lights and celebrate, because its another day in Catasauqua.

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Pizza please in Catasauqua

I am writing this article late in the evening, because I didn't want everyone to call Pizza Hut and make them even crazier than they were.

About a week ago my mother had seen the Pizza Hut commercial about the "Big Dinner" for $19.99 which included 2 Pizzas, breadsticks and wings.   She wanted them last Sunday, but I said let's wait until this Sunday because I had the concert at St. Paul's Lutheran Church and I knew I would not have any time to cook.  It was a good idea in theory.  Well, my mom was so excited she gave me the money Monday already for the pizza.

So tonight, after the concert, I called Pizza Hut, in North Catasauqua at about 6pm -  I should of known after being on hold for a long enough time that I could  changed my clothes and go to the bathroom that there was a problem at The Hut.  But I order my pizza and it would of been 1 hour a 40 minutes for delivery so I offered to pick it up and she said that would be a half hour.  So promptly at 6:30 we arrived at Pizza Hut.  I knew something was wrong right away, the place was full and there were no employees to be seen.  People were discussing how long they were waiting.  The phones were ringing and no one was answering them.  The one guy said he had called 3 times before he got through.  I asked if anyone was working, the other guy said yes they are but they won't come out here because they are scared.  He then saw a square pizza go in the trash and he says - I bet that was mine.  It seems that all of us waiting ordered the same thing - the Big Dinner and they could not keep up with the orders, I don't know why though, and perhaps I never will.

More people came in and even one of my former Sunday School students was there with her daughter and nephew, who were having fun running around.  I think they became a source of entertainment for us since we had nothing else to do.  For some reason spirits stayed high, even more so after someone finally had come out and told the men a head of me that their pizzas would be free, should they ever see them.

There were some orders done, but they were regular pizzas, one for a Dan and another for Brian, neither who were there, but about 5 minutes later a man walked in.  Since no one came out to wait on him, I decided to.  I said . "Are you Dan.?"  He said, "yes".  So I yelled into the kitchen - Dan's here - Pizza pick up and after about 5 minutes someone walked out and handed him a pizza and said no charge.  About ten minutes later Brian's wife walked in, so we yelled to the back again and a girl came out, handed the pizza to the lady and left.  Never saying a word.  We told her it was probably free, and finally a man came out and told her no charge.  Eventually the one set of guys got their Big Dinner and then some other guy did, (he was starting to get a little testy).   We had all offered to go home with Dan and Brian's wife, but they wouldn't take us. 

Around 7pm my order came out and they just handed it to me, I felt kinda bad because there was still one guy that was there before me.  But I left quickly because there was some talk about tripping me and grabbing the pizza.  I said thank you to the girl but there was no response and my pizza to was free, and I believe probably everyone there would be getting free pizza tonight in Catasauqua.   My mom was tickled, she pizza and her money back.

I still don't know what the problem was, only one girl came out for a little bit. looking weary and she said if she could, she would pull the commercial off for the Big Dinner.   Must be something about a square pizza that takes longer, or perhaps it was the magic of the full moon tonight. Either way I can't complain about free pizza.  I hope Pizza Hut works about their pizza problem though, or there will be a lot of free pizza in Catty.

And that's another day in Catasauqua.

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Hark the Herald Choirs Catasauqua

A few years ago my church Salem UCC,  combined with St. Paul's Lutheran Church to do St. Paul's Annual Candlelight Concert.  At the time we were experiencing some "dark times" at Salem and with out the help of St. Paul's and Pastor Gary Walbert, I think  a lot of us would of been without Christmas Spirit. 

Sometimes I think, oh, I don't want to take the time and participate, but then I do and I am glad I did;  and the night of the concert......all I can say is that sometimes, it takes my breath away.  If you have never gone, go this year.  It is tomorrow afternoon, December 11, at 3:30 pm.  Elizabeth Knecht is performing, she is an excellent dancer and soloist.  The voice of an angel.  Mike Fister on the organ at ear splitting volume.  Maybe it's because I sit to close to the speakers.  Besides the combined Choirs (St. Paul's and Salem), there is The James Ruhf Bagpipe Band.  When they come in, omg, it is awesome.  We are suppose to sing "La's" while they play Highland Cathedral, but I am always crying, sorry.

I also see in the bulletin that besides Pastor Gary, our own Pastor Elect Michael Smith will be there.  For those who don't know Pastor Mike will be our new permanent Pastor starting in January. 

There is refreshments afterwards and if that is not enough to make you come, well, I'll be playing the Bongo - yup I am!!!  For real!  I am all excited.  Maybe one day I'll get a drum solo!

Now, if you are still in the mood for music, then next Saturday, December 17th,  you are invited to Luminary Night in North Catasauqua.  The North Catasauqua Community Chorus "We Sing!" will perform a concert in the North Catasauqua Park beginning at 6:30 PM.  North Catasauqua (and parts of Catty) will be all a glow with luminaries throughout the town and around the Park. 

Music is always special, but Christmas songs, well they warm your heart and your soul.  We sing fun songs about reindeers and Santa Claus, but it is those songs about a special baby,  born in a manger that gives that true glowing feeling.

I love Christmas and I love Christmas music and in Catasauqua and North Catasauqua music will fill the air and dispell the darkness of night, because you are never alone when you can find the Light and Love of Christmas. And that's......another day in Catasauqua.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

It's Beginning to Look alot like Christmas

I have been trying to get a moment to write for days, but it seems there is always something to do at this time of the year.  For only the 2nd time in 33 years did I have off on Black Friday.  First I was low man on the totem pole and later, we were busy or someone else took the day off.  It is not that I want to shop, but I want to start decorating.

I tried to be "cute" and post of facebook as I brought down my totes last week that hold my Christmas stuff, but somewhere around 8 I started to fizzle.  Truth be told I have 15 totes that hold my Christmas decorations, Christmas Plates, my Christmas socks and yes, even Christmas Pajamas.  It took Friday, Saturday and Sunday to finish decorating.  Nothing is untouched by Christmas around here.  From the Advent Candle ring to the Village on top of my piano Christmas is in every corner.

Christmas has been popping up all over Catasauqua to!  From decorations and lights to North Catasauqua's Tree Lighting last week (my favorite part is the hot chocolate, boy could I use a cup of that now)  and Catasauqua's Tree Lighting tonight.  We had breakfast with Santa yesterday at Salem UCC and there are still a lot of events to come all over town.

Well, it's time for me to clean up from baking, so back to work, maybe I'll save you a cookie and with's another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, November 24, 2011


What am I truly thankful for this Thanksgiving?  Well, I still have a job, and for only the 2nd time in 34 years I have off Black Friday.  No, I am not going out shopping either after midnight or tomorrow in the wee AM hours.  I prefer shopping online.   Although I am tempted to run to Walmart after 10pm for the Waffle Iron for $2.97.

I am thankful for Parke, my mom and my son and daughter-in-law and my 3 beautiful grandchildren.  This is my family along with a Aunt and few cousins.

I am thankful for my church family, choir and sunday school. 

I am thankful to and for God, I know He is there even when I forget He is.

I am thankful for good health and good friends.

Thanksgiving is like no other holiday. The turkey is probably the best known symbol of Thanksgiving, however, the turkey does not deliver any presents or eggs and candy, instead we eat it.    Pumpkins that we carved into scary creatures of the night, well, we eat it them now.   The apples we bobbed for at the Halloween Party, yup we eat them to baked into a pie.   Da Pennsylvania Dutch filling, we eat that now once, along with sweet potatoes, green bean casseroles and crescent rolls.  Thanksgiving celebrates the harvest and yup, we eat it.  I seem to be capturing a theme here.  But it is a theme seeped in tradition, since the beginnings of Thanksgiving in 1612. 

Well, Thanksgiving is almost over, the leftovers are packed away in the fridge for another day, and yes, Annette, I have the filling corners packed up just for you.  The desserts are still on the table but they will remain their for breakfast tomorrow, and Parke is snoring in the other room.  Ah yes, everything is right with the world at this moment in time. 

Oh I forgot one thing, I am thankful for you dear readers of this blog and for another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, November 23, 2011

You know you are a Rough Rider when Thanksgiving is more than Turkey

On each Thanksgiving Day, the Catasauqua Rough Riders play a non-league game against their rival, the  Northampton Konkrete Kids. The game is not sanctioned and does not count as a win/loss for official standings with regard to playoff consideration within the PIAA. The rivalry which started in 1925 has been ongoing.  When I was really young I can remember Mr. Pfiefly, our gym teacher telling us that if Catty would win the game we would have off Monday after Thanksgiving.

It was such an exciting time and it still is for Catasauqua Students.  Back then we had the Bonfire, the Pep Rally, Homecoming and the big game.  Now they even do more!  I just read on facebook that one of my friend's home and been toilet papered, that's because I senior lives there.

That's my name, last one on the right.
I am so glad that the Catty vs. Northampton game is a Thanksgiving tradition.  I see students wearing some great shirts now, wow-wish we had them back in the day.  We got programs, which we use to autograph for each other.  By some miracle my Grandmother kept all my stuff in the attic and as you can see I have the books for 1969, 1970, 1971, 1972 and 1973.

I was reading some of those autographs, oh boy, did I laugh.  But ah....memories. 

Well, the turkey is hopefully thawed enough and the rice pudding and apple crisp is done.  Time for me to head to bed and prepare for.....another day in Catasauqua.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Catasauqua Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service

Tonight I ran into a friend of mine from school, and reader of my blog, Yvonne, which reminded me to blog tonight about something we both attended this evening and that was the Catasauqua Ecumenical Thanksgiving Service at The Presbyterian Church of Catasauqua.  I sang with the joint choirs tonight and we sounded good! Even if I must say so myself.  The music was fantastic and the singing of the Lehigh Valley Christian High School Chorus was refreshing. 

Rev. Walbert from St. Paul's gave an inspiring sermon and I was happy to see our interim minister from Salem UCC, Pastor Robert Lewis and our soon to be minister, Pastor Michael "the Voice" Smith both participating tonight.  However, I am not sure how to take Rev. Walbert warning Pastor Mike about me, especially since I don't go to St. Paul's.   Really all those rumors about me, not true. 

Anyway back to the service.  It was wonderful and it reminded me really of what Thanksgiving is all about - giving thanks!!!!

This was in the bulletin:  As the pioneers of the Plymouth colony gathered around the feasting table with Native Americans in 1621 to give thanks for all that they had been given by our Bountiful Provider, so we too gather to offer thanks for all those gifts which the Lord has seen fit to give us. Especially for our country, our state and our town.

Yes, I am thankful for much this Thanksgiving, even if times are a little tougher and as Rev. Walbert said in his sermon, it's easy to whine about these tough times, there is so much still to be thankful for.  So dear readers, I am thankful for you, a roof over my head,  and the waffles I had for dinner.  I am thankful for the Ministers of Catasauqua, the people who participated tonight and the people who came for the service.  I am thankful for the little things like a cup of joe in the morning and a Fiber One Chocolate Peanut Butter Brownie at night (yeah it doesn't take much to make me happy). 

And yes, I am thankful for my town....... and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Catasauqua's new book and my Monkey Ghost.

My mother bought me Martha Capwell Fox's new book "Catasauqua and North Catasauqua Revisited".  I am really enjoying it especially since it has pictures of some people that I know or knew when they were still with us. 

The first people from the past that I saw were Grace and Ernie Hilficker.   I can't go a Sunday without thinking about Ernie.  There is a certain benediction and there was one line that the tenors sang and to this day I can still hear Ernie at that line.  Even though they are both gone they are not forgotten.   There are also people that I still see regularly in the book, so I am wondering whether I should start getting their autographs.  That might be fun.

I must say, that I really am enjoying this book.

The other night one of my friends, Nancy Balliet, showed me something in the book that I entirely missed.  MY HOUSE.  Yeah, can you believe it!  There is a picture of my house in the book and it reads "The Mark House at 703-705 Howertown Road, still stands on the corner of Walnut Street and retains the original porches.  The girl on the left appears to be holding a monkey."  A MONKEY, that explains all the crazy things in this house, I betcha we had Monkey Ghost. 

When we first moved into the house there were a lot of unexplainable things, things that went bump in the night, a shadow seen out of the corner of your eye.  Lights going off and on.  A few years ago most of it stopped after we did a "house cleansing" given to me by my Reiki Teacher at the time.  But now we know who to blame.  Monkey Ghost.

and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Friday, November 11, 2011

When feet take flight

This morning I was doing my usual walk through Catasauqua.  If you know me, you know I am not in the best of shape, but I have been going out and trying to walk every day and even did a 5K walk last weekend.  So every day this week I got out for a walk.  Since today is my day off I decided to take a long walk up to Northampton and back, it's just a little over 2 mile walk.

My goal is to be able to run one day.  You see, old age, bad knees and a big butt has kept me grounded and I am even unable to run across the street.  I've tried. I even ask Parke "how do run?"  He tells me it's just like walking but both feet come of the ground.  It's been very frustrating.  Occasionally I try to run across an alley on my walks and it just doesn't happen.

Well, that's until today.  I was on my last couple of blocks on Howertown Road, and Lady Gaga came on my ipod shuffle singing "The Edge of Glory"  and the strongest wind came along blowing the direction I was walking and it practically pushed me.  I smiled and thought "God, you don't have to give me a push, I can make it home." The last couple of blocks I power walk and with the Edge playing in my ears and the wind at my back. it suddenly happened, I was running.  I was practically giddy.  I can only compare it to a plane that has been taxiing on the runway forever and suddenly, magically it takes flight and is airborne.

This sudden euphoria lifted my spirits and my feet.  I had done it.  For a moment I glimpsed youth, health and well being.  Eventually I thought chest would explode so I went back to my power walking.  No not really, but I managed to run about two blocks. 

What a beautiful morning in Catasauqua to take a walk, and even to take flight.

And that's another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Irrational thinking, no, it's just jelly bread

It came to my attention tonight that perhaps, just perhaps, I don't think like other people.  Let's say my thinking is outside the box.  Wait, let's be real, my thinking has it's own little box somewhere.  This all came from a discussion of the Lord's Prayer at my book club.  Where I just happened to mention that when I was a kid that I thought the one line was "give us this day our jelly bread".  Now I wasn't a big fan of jelly bread back then, but what the heck, if God was going to give me jelly bread, who was I to say no.

Now really I am sure some of you out there might of thought the same thing and then again maybe not.  Did you know there is a name for all this. Sure enough, it's called a mondegreen. 

A mondegreen is the mishearing or misinterpretation of a phrase as a result of near homophony, (A homophone is a word that is pronounced the same as another word but differs in meaning. in a way that gives it a new meaning. Like to, two and too)  It most commonly is applied to a line in a poem or a lyric in a song.

Three best know mondegreens are:
  1. "Gladly, the cross-eyed bear (from the line in the hymn "Keep Thou My Way" by Fanny Crosby, "Kept by Thy tender care, gladly the cross I'll bear")
  2. There's a bathroom on the right (the line at the end of each verse of "Bad Moon Rising" by Creedence Clearwater Revival  "There's a bad moon on the rise")
  3. 'Scuse me while I kiss this guy (from a lyric in the song "Purple Haze" by Jimi Hendrix  "'Scuse me while I kiss the sky")
One that was not mentioned here was a favorite of my friend,  Joan.  Years back she called me hysterically laughing about something she had heard.   It was from the Beach Boys Song, "Help me Rhonda"  the line was -
Well since she put me down, I've been out doin' my head
But someone had heard:
Well since she put me down, I've got owls puking in my bed  

So you see, I don't think that jelly bread and daily bread are that far off.  And true, I might not think the same way as other people, but then again, wouldn't that be boring if I did. 

and that's just  .......... a brother stays in a cat with socks on.  Oops, I meant to say..... another day in Catasauqua.

Veterans Day - 11-11-11

Veterans Day is an annual holiday honoring military veterans. It is a federal holiday that is observed on November 11. It is also celebrated as Armistice Day or Remembrance Day in other parts of the world and falls on November 11, the anniversary of the signing of the Armistice (an armistice is a situation in a war where the warring parties agree to stop fighting.  It doesn't mean that it is the end of a war but just a cease of hostilities while they negotiate for peace) that ended World War I.  (Major fighting of WWI  ended at the 11th hour of the 11th date of the 11th month, 1918 - and this year lets throw in one more 11 for 2011).

U.S. President Woodrow Wilson first proclaimed an Armistice Day for November 11, 1919. In proclaiming the holiday, he said
"To us in America, the reflections of Armistice Day will be filled with solemn pride in the heroism of those who died in the country's service and with gratitude for the victory, both because of the thing from which it has freed us and because of the opportunity it has given America to show her sympathy with peace and justice in the councils of the nations."
It wasn't until 1953 when a shoe repair shop owner by the name of Stephen Roid, from Emporia, Kansas, had the idea to celebrate all Veterans on that day. 

With the help of U.S. Representative John Salper, also from Emporia, a bill for the holiday was pushed through Congress. President Eisenhower signed it into law on May 26, 1954.  Congress amended this act on June 1, 1954, replacing "Armistice" with "Veterans," and it has been known as Veterans Day ever since.

The Veterans Day National Ceremony is held each year on November 11th at Arlington National Cemetery . The ceremony commences precisely at 11:00 a.m. with a wreath laying at the Tomb of the Unknowns and continues inside the Memorial Amphitheater with a parade of colors by veterans' organizations and remarks from dignitaries. The ceremony is intended to honor and thank all who served in the United States Armed Forces.

I like to end with this poem:

                           Because of You, Unknown Soldier
By Courtney Tanabe
Because of you, I am here
Because of you, I am able to live freely
Yet I do not know you
And I have not done anything for you
But there you stand, ready to fight
And there you are prepared to die
For me
You've fought before
And you'll fight again
For someone you don't know
So thank you Unknown Soldier
Fighting for me
I'm here because of you
And I owe my future to you

So tomorrow, after you awake, remember to say a prayer for all those who fought to give us freedom and those who continue to lay down their lives for us in places far from home. 

Happy Veterans Day and this is another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Walking in a Fog in Catasauqua - This is just a Test

Literally and figuratively I was walking in a fog this morning.  There was both a fog on the ground and a fog in my head.  First I have to say as soon as I see a foggy morning I think of the Carol Burnett skit from many years ago where she does a fog horn saying Oh Pat.  Still makes me chuckle after all these years.

Walking in a fog is a lot easier than driving, but as I got to the golf course there were a lot of cars.  Do they play golf in the fog?

Golf Course - are they really playing today?
Kudos to North Catasauqua!  On my walk this morning I was watching them put new flags on the telephone poles - Veterans Day is this Friday! 

In news for today - Today will mark the FIRST-EVER Nationwide Test of the Emergency Broadcast System.  It will happen at 2:00 PM EST. 

The Emergency Broadcast System which has Cold War roots enables the president to address the American public within 10 minutes from any location at any time. 

The test will be brief -- 30 seconds from start to finish.

In the event of a real emergency, the test would originate from wherever the president is. For test purposes, it will originate from a FEMA operations center. The president will not be involved and will not speak.

And remember this is a test.  This is only a test.  And this is ....another day in Catasauqua.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

The leaves are falling like rain

This morning I took a walk.  I guess that changing of the clocks didn't work on my internal clock, I was up an hour early so I decided to take a walk instead of lying there trying to fall back to sleep.   First I took Digger, we do a quick trip around the block.  He has a kind of Doggie Dementia that hits in the winter, so I like to do the same walk each day.  When we got to my driveway it looked like it was raining....leaves.  My neighbor's locust tree just continually dropped leaves.  I never saw it do before.  Here is my theory.  Two weeks ago all the trees were green, they were just barely turning colors and then SHAZAM they all got hit with snow, breaking branches and wrecking havoc on the poor trees.  They thought - whoa - we got to loose these leaves quick before that happens again, therefore, the trees have turned bright colors practically overnight and they are dropping their leaves like falling rain.
my friend, Tammy mapping out the route

Well, that's my theory, and speaking of my neighbor's tree, when I came home later today I noticed that most of the leaves fell off the tree today.  Crazy.

And speaking of crazy, I did the 5K Walk yesterday for the Catasauqua Food Bank.  I made it with no problems.   While waiting,  everyone was worrying that they weren't dressed warm enough and here I was thinking I hope I didn't dress to warm, because when I start walking I warm up pretty darn fast.  Special THANKS to Parke, who joined me at around the one mile mark and finished the walk with me.  He was my Simon of Cyrene of sorts.  I was asked to carry one of the signs (which I really didn't want to do) and when he joined me - he carried it for me.  What a great guy.  My friend Tammy ran with her sister-in-law, wish I could run, maybe one day.  When you run you don't really have to have any conversation with people.  It's not that I am anti-social, it's just that I am trying to breathe and I can't seem to do both at the same time.

Kudos to the Bethany Church of Catasauqua for raising money for the Catasauqua Food Bank!  Times are tough, I know, and their are many people that need the help of the Catasauqua Food Bank, so please support them when you can.

Well, I guess that's it for now....and this has been.......another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

What ever happened to Thanksgiving?

Poor, poor Thanksgiving.  The holiday is almost all but forgotten in the stores.  The other day, November 1, I went to Party City, AC Moore and Target and the Fall season is being packed up and Christmas is moving out on to all the shelves faster than you can say Fa La La La.  All I wanted to get were some Bounty napkins that I saw on Target's shelves a couple of days ago.  They had fall leaves, but when I got to Target they were gone and replaced with Bounty Christmas napkins. 

Is it too much to remember Thanksgiving.  I mean the Christmas shopping season is suppose to start Black Friday, not Halloween Friday.  Poor Thanksgiving. 

I still see Halloween decorations around Catty, no Christmas yet. There is so much more to celebrate before Christmas - we still have the big Catty/Northampton Football game.  The bonfire, the pep rally (they still do that don't they?) and hey - let's not forget the Turkey. 

Well that's enough of my ranting for now and this is ...  another day in Catasauqua.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

The Catasauqua Halloween Parade for the inside & Trick or Treat

For the last two years I have been in the Catasauqua Halloween Parade with We Sing, on their float.  Many years ago, when I was just a teenager, I was in the Halloween Parade on a Float for the Youth Group from the Y.  We were hillbillies.  We build a shack with a porch and we had the back of the float decorated like a hill top with flowers and artificial grass.  We had a lot of fun in the Catasauqua Parade and so we did it again in the Allentown Halloween Parade, however, on the way home we hit a low hanging branch which caused the shack to come down on top of us.  There were no serious injuries, thankfully, but one of the girls had an injury to her leg and I bruised a finger.  So each time I climb on a float, I worry.  But the last two years have been a lot of fun, and riding in the parade is so different from watching it every year. 

First, the ride from the North Catty Playground to the line up area for the parade is a hoot.  The hills in Catty make for an thrilling ride, just hold on.  Secondly, children of Catasauqua, stop yelling CANDY CANDY CANDY, you are not going to get any from me yelling that.  The ones who get the candy are the ones who wave and smile and say THANK YOU.

And speaking of candy, how about Trick or Treat this year, sidelined by a SNOW STORM, hello, what's that all about.  But Trick or Treat went off Sunday night and I zombiefied myself (I don't like zombies really but I could wear warmer clothing).  One thing I discovered - boy, I have a lot of hair when you tease it all out. 

Trick or treaters were very polite this year, lots of thank yous!  That's always nice to hear.  I know trick or treaters are also getting older and I don't mind that, but hey don't be smoking and trick or treating at the same time and stop texting while you hold your bag out for candy. 

Well, those are all my Halloween thoughts, I hope your Halloween went well, and that's just ...another day in Catasauqua.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

HO HO HO it's Halloween

Well, it is almost Halloween and we are seeing SNOW.  What the heck!  I wrote on Facebook yesterday that it was going to snow because I was going to walk in my first 5K and I figured it was an abomination against nature and it was going to revolt.  Well, it revolted so much that the 5K was cancelled, so I used the time to run to the Farmer's Market in Allentown.  The sleet was pelting the car on the way to the market and the snow started to come down on the way home.  Now for my readers not from this area, let me explain that snow, especially accumulating snow is very  unusual at this time of the year. 

It is starting to look like a winter wonderland out there - I was just out taking a few pictures and wow it is laying on the grass fast.  I know this snow won't stay around long, the weather is bound to be warmer soon, but it does look pretty, for now.   But tonight is Trick or Treat, hopefully it will be postponed until tomorrow night, I had read on my water/sewer bill that the rain date for Trick or Treat was Sunday night, I wonder if they consider this snow date??...... and that's .... another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Mums the word in Catasauqua

This morning on my walk I remembered my camera and collected festive fall pictures in Catasauqua.  Then I began to wonder about the Chrysanthemum.  The beautiful colorful flower that tells us Fall is here.

Well, did you know there is the Legend of the Chrysanthemum?  Well there is. In fact there are a few Legends.

According to an ancient Chinese legend, about 3,000 years ago, an emperor was told that the Dragon-fly Island in the Sunrise Sea (Japan) had a magic herb that would restore his youth. But since only youth could collect it, he sent a dozen young men and a dozen girls to the island.

They arrived at the islands after surviving perilous storms and attacks by sea serpents, and finding neither magic herb nor inhabitants on the island, they decided to stay. The prized possession they brought for trading, and now nurtured as a tie with their homeland, was the golden chrysanthemum.

However, Japanese Legend has it that in the beginning, there were so many gods in heaven that some, including the god Izanagi and the goddess Izanami, were sent to the earth on a cloud-bridge.

Once on earth, the goddess created the gods of the winds, mountains, sea, and others, finally dying upon creating the god of fire. Izanagi missed Izanami and so followed her to the place of Black Night where she had gone, only to see vile sights and be pursued by the Old Hag of Black Night.

Narrowly escaping back to the earth, the god Izanagi went straight to the river for a purification bath. As he shed his clothes and they touched the ground, they turned into twelve gods. His jewels became flowers--one bracelet an iris, another a lotus, and his necklace a golden chrysanthemum.

The word "chrysanthemum" comes from the Greek words meaning "golden flower," but a German legend refers to another of the many colors of chrysanthemums. One cold, snowy Christmas Eve in Germany's Black Forest, a peasant family was sitting down to a meager supper when they heard a wailing. At first they thought it was the wind. But upon hearing the sound repeatedly, they opened the door and found a beggar. They ushered in the poor man who was blue with cold, wrapped him in blankets, and shared their food.
Instantly, the blankets were shed, revealing a man in shining white clothing with a halo around his head. Proclaiming himself the Christ Child he fled. The next morning, outside the door where he had stood, were two white chrysanthemums.

Today, many Germans bring white chrysanthemums into their homes on Christmas Eve, believing that by doing so they are sheltering the Christ Child.

So there you have it, who knew a simple flower could have so many stories about it.  I am sure there are more, but I gotta get ready work. And with that it's.....another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Do you remember singing for your candy?

Can you imagine,  if when trick or treaters came to your house on trick or treat night,   and you asked them for a song first, what may happen or worse yet, what they might sing.  I remember, growing up in Catty, that we had to sing halloween songs at some of houses or we wouldn't get treats. 

I was shy when I was very young, and usually trick or treated by myself which meant I would have to sing solo, and I mean so low that you couldn't hear it.  I am glad when people stopped asking for songs, I believe it all was a plot perpetrated by Mrs. Bittner, the then music teacher.  Ah, remember the autoharp.  Wow, you can't think about music class without thinking about the autoharp.  I use to love playing that thing.

Anyway, back to Halloween Songs, my favorite and only one I can recall was one my son sang when he was little.

Stirring and stirring and stirring my brew,
ewwwww  ewewww  ewwww  ewwwww
stirring and stirring and stirring my brew
ewwwww  ewwwww   ewwww  ewwwww

tick tock....tick tock.....tick tock.....

Hope I didn't scare you........and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Will Walk for Food

I'm in training.  I power walked with Parke a few days ago.  I call it power walking because to keep up with Parke I have to take 3 steps to his one, damn his long legs.  Then yesterday I walked 1.6 miles and then today 2.1 miles.  I am in  training for a 5K in Catty next Saturday which benefits the Catasauqua Food Bank.  The Bethany Church in Catasauqua is organizing it. (They are located at the former Grace Methodist Church on Walnut Street).  We all know what this economy is like and more people need the food bank and there is not enough food to go around.  A few of us from Salem UCC are going to walk - that's where we came up with..."Salem UCC - We will walk for food".

Let me give you a word of advice for walking 2.1 miles, don't wear jeans, they chafe.  I guess I better train in sweat pants.  But one thing I can tell you, Catty is beautiful in the Fall.  The mums, the decorations and pumpkins on the porch make for a colorful walk.

Speaking of Fall the Halloween Parade is tomorrow night, however they are calling for some heavy rain, in case that does happen, I believe the rain date is next Wednesday.  Personally, I hope it doesn't rain.  You'll be able to find me on the We Sing float, which will be in the 1st Division.  I love a parade! 

Well, that's all for now, I will have to take the camera on my next walk so I can take pictures of Autumn and  .....another day in Catasauqua!

Sunday, October 9, 2011

Back at Home - safe at last

Morning in Gettysburg
Back at home, safe at last is my favorite line from The Bernstein Bear's Spooky Old Tree.  Today was the day after the wedding and trip back home.  First after a very sparse breakfast, Parke and I get into the car to find out that the little man in the gps won't talk to us.  Terror strikes my heart.  If you know me well, you know these two things.  I have no sense of direction and I don't like to drive, but the little man in the gps telling me when to turn solved both problems, more or less. 

I didn't know what to do, I was on the verge of panic, but luckily we had a yahoo map with us - with the driving directions, however they where slightly different than the way we came.  But to my shock, I knew how to get to main street Gettysburg, from where I was.  Thankfully we were stuck in traffic on the way down and I would say - oh look, there is the moose lodge, or the American Legion and the - oh there is a seminary on Seminary Road. 

So except for the one wrong turn I took, it wasn't too bad getting home.  We stopped at Esther's for lunch and we were home by 3:00 pm.  We did go to North Catasauqua's Autumn Fest, which was really busy and hopping.  Can you believe this weather in October!  Great for the Wedding and the Fest!

Tonight I made a quick visit with my friend, Nancy to see another dear friend Miriam who is in the hospital.  Nancy called me from her bus trip, just before my trip to Gettysburg to tell me about Miriam, whew thank goodness for cell phones. You can get the word around fast - from where ever you are!

So tonight I go to take a shower and the water is out!!!! What the heck!  Well I understand there is a water main break at Covington and Walnut Streets, I just managed to take a shower a short while ago.  I hope the water stays on!!

Well, I guess it's time for this blogger to hit the sack, I didn't sleep to well last night in all that quiet.  That's why I never go camping.  Give me the sound of cars on Howertown Road to lull me to sleep, and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Saturday, October 8, 2011

A beautiful wedding

Here I still am in the hills of Gettysburg.  I just got back from the wedding, I will post the pictures when I get home.  I must say I had mixed emotions about the lodge when I got here.  The room was not ready when we got here, but it did not take long until it was.  The cabin is beautiful inside, but outside - well, that was another matter, there really wasn't much of a road, or parking for the cabin, but I found out tonight that the lodges only opened in July, so that explains alot.  This was only the fourth wedding that the lodge has had, and they did an excellent job at that.

I had a little girl sitting next to me and she stole my fancy carrot sculpture off my meal, but hey that was okay.  The meal was delicious.  We did find out our way back to the cabin tonight.  Thank God for the moon and the book light that Tammy gave me for my birthday!!!

Well, it's getting late, I am sitting by the electric make believe fireplace, and the night it almost over.  So I guess I will join Parke in watching a little E! before bed. Good night everyone.

and with that it's ....just another night in Gettysburg...oh wait...sorry.... and that's another day in Catasauqua.

Out of Catasauqua

Well, today is an Adventure Day.  I drove to Gettysburg for a wedding.  We are staying at the Lodges of Gettysburg.  The cabin is nice enough - 2 flat screen tvs, a kitchenette, electric fireplace, high ceilings and a private bedroom and huge bathroom, but it still is a tad strange.

I have some time before the wedding so I thought I take this time to write.  Parke is hoping on seeing ghosts tonight.  He just might.  Our keychains have flashlights on them so the walk from the wedding promises to be an exciting one.  We are up hill from the lodge and there really isn't much road to speak off.  The parking up at or cabin is in the center of the cabins and there isn't much space, so I hate to take the car down to the main lodge for the wedding, I don't want to loose my spot.

If you know me - you know I hate to drive, but, with Annette's GPS I made it straight to the lodge.  I think I am going to have to get myself one, one of these days.

Well, if you are in Catty, there is still a lot to do this weekend - Autumn Fest will be held at the North Catasauqua Playground Sunday.  I am hoping to make it by Sunday Afternoon, see you there. 

Oh - on the way here we stopped at a small diner in Dillsburg, Wolfe's Dinner, it was cheap, good and a blast from the past.  Well, I better get dressed for the wedding, I wonder if hiking boots will go with my dress.

Have a great day and that's ...another day in Catasauqua

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Things that go Bump in the Night

Tis the season to write about the ghostly hauntings of Catasauqua, except I don't know alot of them, well I know a few, but their personal ones, and I will share them eventually.  It's the more well known ones I would like to tell about.

Actually one supposed haunting is that of Dery Lounge located at Fifth and Pine Streets.  The 56 room Mansion was home to Desiderius George Dery, who was born in Baja, Hungary. He was well educated and graduated from Vienna's St. Mary's Academy with a bachelor of arts degree.  Along with his classical education went a degree from the Vienna Textile Academy. It was here that he first became interested in silk manufacturing.

Knowing that the rigid class system of his native land was not the best route to economic mobility, Dery decided to take his skills to America. So in 1887 he arrived in the bustling silk mill town of Paterson, N.J. He arrived in Catasauqua in 1897.  This is where his fortune started, but many years later, due to World War I, and the Great Depression, this is where it was lost.  Although he retained ownership of his mansion, Dery could no longer afford to live in his dream castle.  He and his daughter Helen moved across the street to a smaller frame house. (There is a rumored unground tunnel between the houses.)

Troubled by a bad heart, on March 3, 1942, D. George Dery left Catasauqua and was taken to his daughter's and son-in-law's Bethlehem home. On Sunday morning, March 5, he died at the age of 75.

Is it his ghosts that haunts the hallowed halls of Dery Mansion?  It was reported in the Catty Press that the ghost of a little girl has been seen and workers are scared to work their.  Hmmmm.  It was reported that the new owner has called in some paranormal investigators (who you gonna call!)

Well, I will be on the lookout for any ghost and goblins this month.  My favorite holiday is Halloween so I will share some facts and folklore in the coming weeks.

In the meantime, if you see me creeping in your backyard, you know it's just.........another day in Catasauqua.

Friday, September 30, 2011

What's going this weekend!!!!

Are you in Catty and need something to do this weekend?  Well you are in luck, Fest-O -Fall is taking place Saturday. 

I will be at the George Taylor House location with some ladies from my church, Salem UCC with some candy for the children.  Looks like it will be a fall weather day too with cooler temps!

So why not come out an join us.

Thursday, September 22, 2011

We Sing Community Chorus-Concert Sunday

I am a member of We Sing Community Chorus and I just wanted to let you know about our Concert this Sunday at 4:30 PM at Salem United Church of Christ located at 615 Third Street, Catasauqua, PA.   The Concert is entitled the Beat Goes On....Hits of the 20's, 30's, 40's 50's and 60's.  There are some really great songs and a lot of fun comes with this concert.

I really enjoy being a member of this chorus, we have a great director, John  and I have a lot of huckleberry friends on this chorus to.  You will know what I mean by that after you hear Moon River!

Admission is FREE and their are refreshments afterwards.  Hey it doesn't get any better than that does it!

Well, I am getting ready to leave for my small vay-cay with the ladies, but I will be back Saturday rested and ready to sing.  I am taking my beach chair - I am going to be optimistic! 

So, don't forget Sunday afternoon when in Catasauqua the music will fill the air and we can say that's......another day in Catasauqua.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

On Vacation

Well, I am leaving Catty for a couple of days and heading to sunny, oops, the rainy shore of Ocean City, NJ.  Oh well, I wanted to get aome reading done, I guess this will be the chance. 

On the other hand maybe I will catch the last episode of "All My Children" while we hide out in the room, and who knows, the weather could change and maybe we will have some nice weather. 

I'll let you know when I get back.

Here's wishing you......another day in Catasauqua.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

So this is what 6:20 AM is like

As you may know, I have been on a partial layoff since February (this blog started in March when I ran out of stuff to clean).  We just got called back for 3 weeks, we can now work 4 days a week, at least for a little bit.

What I forgot about was, what it is like at 6:20 AM as compared to 8:00 AM, which for the past so many months I was rolling out of bed at.

At 6:20 AM - it is dark.  My mother talks to me endlessly (mostly about Dancing with the Stars and it hasn't even started yet) The dog wants to go for a walk. 

At 7:20 AM when I leave for work there is - so many school buses, school children and lots of traffic and Where do all the garbage trucks come from?

I guess I was spoiled.  This is day two of getting up at 6:20 AM and I am still not use to it.  Thanks to Wawa Pumpkin spice coffee I am more able to cope.

Speaking of pumpkin, this past weekend I was in search of a pumpkin muffin.  We decided to stop at Dunkin Donuts to see if they had any.  The man behind the counter was of Asian decent and he was so delightfully funny.  He says to me "Punkin why all people want punkin, everybody come in and want punkin muffin?"  I said to him it's the season for pumpkin, I then asked for an ice coffee, he replies "You want punkin coffee?  We got punkin coffee, we got punkin everything, everyone want punkin!"  He was so nice, funny and just a joy to talk to he would of brightened any day with or without the pumpkin muffin.

This weekend there seems to be alot of events in Catty to check out, one is at SALEM UCC  - we are having a flea market from 9:00 AM to 1:00 PM, we will have food, lots of good stuff cheap, a bake sale and silent auction.  Check it out if you are in the neighborhood, because that's ......another day in Catasauqua.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

There was a Full House in Catasauqua Tonight

The full house was at St. Paul's Lutheran Church, located on Howertown Road in Catasauqua.  St. Paul's graciously invited the town to a Service of Remembrance in honor of 9/11. 

I decided not to sing in the joint choir, but to instead sit in the congregation with my bff, Cathy.  We were later joined by Pastor Robert "Bob" Lewis, our Interim Pastor at Salem UCC.  We found out later that we had each chosen a different color to wear tonight, I was wearing red, Pastor Bob wore white and Cathy, wore blue.  We were patriotic with out even trying.

The service was wonderful, first there was a candlelight procession.  Down the aisle first was her Honor the Mayor, Barbara Schlegel.  I got a little choked up when I saw Police, EMS, and the Fire Department individuals come down the aisle with candles held high.  And how can you not get a misty eyed when American Legion Post #215 comes in with the American Flag.

The songs were appropriate and one of my favorites was included, "Make me a Channel of your Peace" which I told Cathy, I want sung at my funeral someday. 

Make me a channel of your peace.  Where there is hatred let me bring your love. Where there is injury your pardon Lord.  And where there's doubt, true faith in you.

If we all could just be peacemakers, wouldn't it be such a wonderful world.

Oh, I must mention Elizabeth Knecht, who has a wonderful voice!  She sang two solos and also did a Liturgical dance while the Community Choir sang Let There be Peace on Earth.  AND HEY COMMUNITY CHOIR you did wonderful!!!  What a good turn out of choir members from the Catasauqua area churches!

It was to Fellowship Hall afterwards for some delicious cookies.  When I was done, Pastor Bob leaned over and said, "You know what this is don't you.......another day in Catasauqua!"

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Remember 9/11

On September 10, 2001, the evening news had a lead story about two pekingese dogs waiting for their master to come home from work.   Parke turned to me and said "I guess it is a slow news night."  We did know what would be happening the next day.

I can't believe that ten years has passed since that terrible day.  I remember it well.  I was at work, and my bff Cathy called. "Bev " she said "the World Trade Center has been hit by an airplane."   I was shocked, I couldn't comprehend what she was telling me, I turned to Oliver who I worked with at the time and told him, he was trying to look on CNN but there wasn't anything there yet.  The next thing she told me was that another Tower was hit by a plane.  She was watching Good Morning America  and they didn't really know what was happening, they were showing you live what was going on. 

My first words were is Missy okay.  That's Cathy's niece and my daughter-in-law's sister.  Cathy assured me that she didn't work anywhere near the World Trade Center.  But we found out different a little later, Missy indeed was there, had just gotten out of the subway after the first plane hit and saw the second plane.  She did make it to safety and after a long day of travel made it home to her apartment. 

At work, we could only hear it on the radio, we did get some images from CNN, but the internet was bogged down just like the phone lines.  I couldn't  reach my son or daughter-in-law, they lived outside of DC in Virginia.  I heard from them late in the day and found out that they were safe.

They day seemed endless at work, the radio was reporting about the World Trade Center, the Pentagon and the plane that went down in Pennsylvania.  I was so overcome with emotion I went out to another bff, Annette, with whom I have worked with for 33 years now.  I looked at her, she looked at me and we started to cry and hug each other.  We didn't know what to think, we didn't know what was going on, there was a lot of speculation and it was not until I got home and could watch it on TV that I fully understood what was happening. 

I called my Pastor at the time and asked if we could open the Church, I felt like I needed to be in the safety of my church's sanctuary even if it was for quiet prayer.  She wasn't certain people would come, I made a few phone calls and that night our church was full.  I guess I lot of people felt like I did.  I even remember the neighbor across the street calling over to me and saying are you having a service and I said, "Yes" and she came right over.  Catasauqua came together as a community while Americans came together all across the United States that night and many nights after to pray.   We came together as a Nation that day, we held hands with each other and we were proud to be Americas.  The American Flag flew from everywhere you looked.

It wasn't until one year later, when I took the day off and watched Good Morning America replay what had happened a year earlier did I understand what Cathy was watching and trying to explain to me.

I get emotional when I think about 9/11, I didn't loose anybody and for that I am grateful, but it still left a whole in my heart.  I love Catasauqua, but I also love New York and had been there dozens of times for the Letterman Show and the taping of the View.  I have seen Broadway Shows, been to the top of the Empire State Building and been in the World Trade Center.  I've seen the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island where my grandfather's family came to America.

I think in Catty as well as in many towns across America, we take our Freedom for granted.  We don't fight wars here on our soil.  We have the freedom to do as we please as long as it is within the law and that day a little piece of our freedom was taken from us.  We grew up a little, our innocence was taken away, civilians not soldiers died that day.  Fireman and Policeman were in the front lines, many of them loosing their lives in the process, protecting the people they are sworn to protect. Real heroes. Real American Heroes.

I found myself wishing that the biggest news on TV would be those two pekingese again
From the song Proud to be an American -

And I’m proud to be an American,
where at least I know I’m free.
And I wont forget the men who died,
who gave that right to me.
And I gladly stand up,
next to you and defend her still today.
‘ Cause there ain’t no doubt I love this land,
God bless the USA.

and with that it's......another day in Catasauqua