Happy Thanksgiving. I hope you have a lot to be thankful for. We do. We got to spend Thanksgiving with our children and grandchildren a week early,

Adrian, Cain, Van and Snider arrived last Tuesday. Kimball fixed a late breakfast for everyone. If we had more class we could call it brunch, probably. The Gilfoils and us grandparents had finished before Davis, Erica, Reese and Ben arrived, but that didn’t interrupt my nap one bit.

Our four grandchildren took to each other like… well, cousins. They just seem to know it’s family.

Thursday evening, we all went to a restaurant, except Erica who had to work. It was perfect: the girls didn’t have to cook or clean up the mess.  The kids enjoyed the meal and kiddie games they made up: Snider a year old on Sept. 9, Reese 20 months. Van three years on Oct. and Ben 11.

I’ve always enjoyed Thanksgiving but they just seem to improve as they change.  Back in the day, I’d take my birddog to Grandpa and Grandma Long’s or we’d all go to Grandma Boultinghouse’s. Different bunch of cousins, aunts and uncles, but no lack of entertainment.

Years later, we’d congregate at Mom and Dad’s. Now the family comes to our house.

Adrian, Cain and the boys got to his hometown, Lake Providence, by Friday evening and on to their home in St. Francisville by Saturday evening.

Talk about a no pressure Thanksgiving week.

– The lights on top of the Sunderwirth bandstand? One of the best ideas I ever had.  Kimball and I saw them on the Ashdown, AR, courthouse and I was wowed. Kimball called that courthouse and they sent some postcards. I gave the cards to Chamber officials about three years ago. This year they got it done but there’s no mention of me in the press release. I’d rather have seen white lights running vertical converging at the peak.

– Another idea: paint the four-inch stripe between the yellow no passing lines on the north-south section of Main Street the length of town blue in honor of Matt Chism, the Cedar County deputy who died in the line of duty. I’d expect we could get plenty of volunteers and donated paint.

– Monday evening Kimball and I went to the family night for Moody Graves who passed away last week at 93.  We knew almost everyone there since Moody worked with us for several years. She was always a favorite of ours. She just took charge and ran the office.  When we were going to install computers in 1989, Moody said, “If you try to make me learn to run a computer, I’ll quit.”  We took her at her word and she kept running the office.

– Her daughter, Cheryl, worked for us until she took a job at a Joplin newspaper.  They wouldn’t let her do the job for them she did for us because she was a girl. We talked about it at the family night but Kimball and I don’t remember if Cheryl came back and did the job for us after she married Jerry. She surely could have.

– I ran into a buzz saw when I called the Cedar County courthouse Monday afternoon, The two officials I spoke with were livid (as one of them described it) that a reporter (not me or anyone who works here) had gotten a probable cause statement that identified the minor and published it in lurid detail.what the man did. I cringed when I saw it. The perpetrator (not the reporter) will have to face Judge Pyle on Dec. 2. I’ve always enjoyed the judge’s sense of humor. I might have to go to Stockton that day to see him stern. KL