The Postscript - Dec 26, 2019 - Caleb, the Christmas Tree

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I went with my parents to get a Christmas tree. 

All the trees were wearing hangtags shaped like bells and all the bells had hand-lettered names on them. At first, I assumed these trees were spoken for and the names indicated the person who had reserved the tree. Then I realized that, no, the names were for the trees. 

This was a fancy place and apparently, when you spend as much as this store was charging for a tree, the tree came complete with a name. Actually, for what they were charging, I’m surprised the trees didn’t come with at least a two-year degree from a Vo-Tech college. Still, they were lovely trees, I must admit. We immediately spotted a Balsam Fir named “Howard,” and the wind was so chill I was fully prepared ready to pile Howard on top of the car and call it a day. 

But tradition insisted we make something resembling a hunt and so we reviewed the rest of the trees lined up in the windy parking lot until we came to one that seemed to have near perfect shape: not too bushy, an attractive leader at the top, no straggly branches at the bottom, and just the right height. There was only one problem: the tree was named “Caleb.”

“Mom, Caleb is not a good name for a Christmas tree.”

“No, it really isn’t,” my mother agreed. We both studied Caleb silently. There was no denying that Caleb was an attractive tree. 

“Maybe we could rename him,” my mother suggested, as we strapped Caleb to the roof for the short drive home.

My dad got out the metal tree stand which is old and a little rusty and will never be replaced because you can’t buy one like it anymore. He pounded the tree down onto the stake in the middle of the pan and tightened the screws. He raised the tree into a standing position and its branches slowly relaxed, showing off its full splendor, then he wrapped it in a few strings of lights. 

“Do you think that’s enough lights?” my mother asked my husband, Peter, (who is the least likely to have an opinion on the subject) and Peter declared that there were plenty of lights. 

Then my mom pulled out the ornaments and wondered aloud where many of them came from and how long we have had them. We don’t remember. 

Except we know the little fellow in the canoe used to be holding an oar until my dad carved a tiny paddle for him (because what was he doing with an oar in a canoe?) And my mom remembers the ornaments she brought back the year they visited the Holy Land. But what about the sled that had my dad’s name on it and the year: “1982”? It is a mystery—as is the angel made of pinecones and the tiny skiers holding tiny skies and the surprising number of mice in Christmas attire. 

“You could have dressed up a whole string of them you caught under the sink this week!” I suggested to my mom (a thought she did not seem to care for). 

There were a few glass balls hung to fill in the empty spaces and the whole process was finished in what seemed like no time at all. 

“I think Caleb looks very nice!” my mother declared. 

And, while I still thought it was a wildly inappropriate name for a Christmas tree, Caleb had somehow managed—as is often the case this time of year—to embody the Christmas spirit exactly. 

Till next time,

Carrie

POSTSCRIPT

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The Postscript - Sep 24, 2020 - Mouse Wars

My husband Peter is now at war with the mice. The mice (possibly with the assistance of a rat or two) have eaten the electrical wiring in our car causing extensive damage. The coating on the wires is apparently tasty. I don’t know any automobile engineers personally but,... [More]

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The Postscript - Sep 17, 2020 - Being Blue

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The Postscript - Sep 10, 2020 - Gladiolas

Yesterday, I bought gladiolas. They are nearly three feet tall and bright fuchsia. It is safe to say they are the most exciting thing to appear at my desk in ages.  When I walked in the front door my husband, Peter, said, “Oh my gosh.”  Translated, that... [More]

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The Postscript - Sep 3, 2020 - The Bear

The two women told me about the bear when I was on my hike.  They were on trail bikes and saw the bear in the direction I was headed. “It was scary!” one of the women said.  We were all a little nervous. There had been a bear attack just a few weeks earlier... [More]

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The Postscript - Aug 27, 2020 - Reading to Lori

I’ve been reading to Lori. Lori is my husband, Peter’s, older sister. She has cancer and has been battling it for a while now. She uses oxygen to help out and catching this virus would be terrible for her, so Peter and I are extra careful, in large part because I’d... [More]

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The Postscript - Aug 20, 2020 - More Dog Stories

It seems I have acquired a reputation. I have been handing out dog treats for three months. Every day, I take the same trail, and every day, I meet many of the same customers. Dogs have an amazing memory when it comes to getting a treat—particularly from a stranger. ... [More]

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The Postscript - Aug 13, 2020 - Summer Storm

I was headed out for my daily hike. There was thunder in the distance.  “It’s getting lighter,” my husband, Peter, said. “I don’t think we’re going to get any rain.” The air smelled like a storm to me, but what do I know? If my dog,... [More]

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The Postscript - Aug 6, 2020 - The Blue Tarp

I noticed my wrists were sticking to my desk. This was a gradual awareness. I spend almost all day at my desk and I don’t know precisely when it started, but I finally looked down because my wrists were undeniably sticky. I had used the wrist rest in front of my keyboard... [More]

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COURT

Small Claims Court Proceedings

Case number 2020-SC-2 D Walker Concrete, LLC vs Jory Parks. On June 15th, 2020 (plaintiff) D Walker Concrete LLC filed claim against (defendant) Jory Parks, DBA Heartcross Ranch Designs LLC in the amount of $1150.25 for concrete delivered, plus $15 for sheriff service and $67.50... [More]

District Court Sentencings

Rolando Gonzales appeared in Wallace County District Court on January 12, 2020 for sentencing in case number 2019-CR-10 with court appointed attorney Christopher Rohr of Colby, Kans. On February 13, 2019, Gonzales had been found guilty of count 1 Possession of a Controlled Substance,... [More]

Traffic Court March - June

Skyler Jacob Adams Urban, Goodland Kans, transporting an open container, purchase/possession/comume by minor. Deferred adjudication, 12 months. Court Costs $108. William M Dysart, Jr., Weatherford, Okla, driving 82 mph in a 65 mph zone, Fined $87, court cost $108.  Shane... [More]

Wallace County District Court Proceedings

Rene Trevino appeared in Wallace County District Court on October 2, 2019 for sentencing in case number 2019 CR 12.  Trevino had been charged with 1 Count Domestic Battery, a Class B, Person Misdemeanor on September 7, 2019.  He appeared in court with court-appointed... [More]

Traffic Court for January and February

Catherine Elizabeth Capra, Pleasant Hill, Mo, driving 78 mph in a 65 mph zone, deferred, court costs $108. Justin Blake Meyer, St. Francis, Kans, liquor purchased by minor, nolo contendre, fined $200, court costs $239. Transporting an open container, guilty plea, fined $200.... [More]

Traffic Court September-December

Forman, David Scott, Miami Fla, driving 78 mph in a 50 mph zone. Fines $177 Court Cost $108. Hagan, Audrey Ann, Columbia Mo, driving 78 mph in a 65 mph zone. Deferred. Court Cost $108. Pfeffer, Samuel Tyler, Sharon Springs, Reckless Driving.  Bench Trial – Not... [More]

Traffic Court up to September 2019

Turner, Philip Russell II, driving 85 mph in a 65 mph zone, deferred adjudication, court costs $108. Patton, Amanda, driving 93 mph in a 65 mph zone, deferred adjudication, court costs $108. Ramey, Tyler Ray, failure to stop or obey railroad crossing signal, fines $195, court... [More]

Wallace County District Court Sentencings

On May 15th, Vance Diamond Halsey appeared in the Wallace County District Court with court appointed attorney, Christopher Rohr, Colby for sentencing in the matter of case 2019-CR-03.  Halsey was charged with Fleeing or Attempting to Elude a Police Officer on March 12, 2019, ... [More]

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NEWS

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New Equipment Reduces Operational Noise At CHS

CHS United Plains Ag recently installed new equipment in its Sharon Springs grain elevator to reduce noise levels for the Sharon Springs community.  The new fan silencers will enable the facility to run its cooling and drying equipment more efficiently while reducing noise... [More]

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Golf Season Winds Down

The last golf tournament of the season was held on Saturday. A small number of local golfers faced the wind, dirt and smoke for an 18 hole par 3 course. The unique layout was fun and challenging. Winning the tournament was Duane Elder. Second place went to Debbie David. The first... [More]

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WPAA to Feature Paul & Lezlee

Paul and Lezlee cross many musical borders specializing in folk, Americana, soul, and blues. With "songs that speak", they spent from 2014-2018 heavily touring the United States in their trio En Power & Light. Since 2018, they have taken to the road as a duo and continue... [More]

Regional Maternal Health Network Kickoff Meeting

The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) recently awarded a $100,000 HRSA-20-026 Rural Health Network Development Planning Grant to establish a Regional Maternal Health Network in Northwest Kansas. As... [More]

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Midwest Energy Community Fund Accepting Applications

The Midwest Energy Inc Community Fund benefits charitable, educational and nonprofit organizations in the Midwest Energy service area. Five customer committees review charitable requests and submit recommendations to Midwest Energy management for approval. Each committee allocates... [More]

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Dane G. Hansen Foundation Announces New Initiative for Child Care Centers to Support Early Childhood Education

LOGAN –The Dane G. Hansen Foundation is pleased to announce a new, 5-year pilot initiative for licensed childcare centers in Northwest Kansas. NW Kansas Cares for Kids includes three new grant opportunities for childcare centers that meet the following criteria: •... [More]

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Timeline Of COVID Cases in Wallace County

August 20th - 1 active - 0 recovered - 80 negative Austust 26th - 2 active - 0 recovered - 86 negative August 28th - 2 active - 1 recovered - 88 negative August 31st - 4 active - 1 recovered - 89 negative September 1st - 4 active - 1 recovered - 91 negative... [More]

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Kansas Commissioner of Education Dr. Watson visited the Sharon Springs Kindergarten class last week.

Kansas Commissioner of Education Dr. Watson visited the Sharon Springs Kindergarten class last week. 

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BUGLE NOTES

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Bugle Notes - Sep 24, 2020

The Guardians of the Fort Wallace Museum recently wrapped up their Buffalo Hunt Raffle fundraiser, as the finale for their “Harvesting the Plains” event on Sat. Sept. 12, 2020. The lucky winner was Chaston Hoeme of Scott City, KS. Chaston celebrated his birthday this... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Harvesting the Plains Exposition

Another epic weekend is now a memory here at the Fort Wallace Museum! This year’s Exposition was “Harvesting the Plains,” a 2-day outdoor education experience teaching what it took to live on the Prairie in the 19th century. Buffalo hunting, food gathering and... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Sep 10, 2020

The public is invited to experience a journey to the past at the Harvesting the Plains Exposition on Friday, September 11, and Saturday, September 12, on the Fort Wallace Museum grounds in Wallace, Kansas. Harvesting the plains may be done a little differently today than it was... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Sep 3, 2020

Rodeo Weekend is here! Join us this Saturday, Sept. 5 at the Wallace Rodeo Grounds for a 7 pm MT performance. Special features are the Cole Hudson Memorial Saddle Bronc Riding, as well as miniature bull riding for young people. A repeat performance will be held on Sunday evening,... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Aug 27, 2020

Grab your boots and your hat, it’s almost time for the Fort Wallace Rodeo! The postponed Rodeo is planned for Labor Day Weekend, Sat. Sept. 5 at 7 PM MDT and Sun. Sept. 6 at 6 PM MDT. Please note the Sunday time (6 PM) is a change from the recent past, as we tried to avoid... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Aug 6, 2020

The Fort Wallace Museum was represented in the Wallace County Fair Parade by a contingent of buffalo hunters (JD Perry, Jake Bauer, Lynn Kirkham), honoring the 2020 historical theme of “Harvesting the Plains.” Museum Nex-Gen intern Adrienne Selzer led the way with... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Jul 16, 2020

The re-scheduled Annual Meeting of the Fort Wallace Memorial Association will be held Sunday, August 9, 2020 at 5 pm at the Fort Wallace Muuseum. This year’s meeting will be more low-key; there will be annual reports and the election of officers, but no educational program.... [More]

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Bugle Notes - Jul 9, 2020

Visitorship remains steady at the Fort Wallace Museum, with a strong number of area people, as well as travelers along Hwy 40. Work continues on the Weskan Sod Schoolhouse display by Patty Lou Lock, Lynn and Rita Kirkham, which will showcase information about our County’s... [More]

More Bugle Notes