Tutwiler News

TUTWILER NEWS


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News from Tutwiler
by Janie Bruister

    Picture this...it's the second day of the month, normally a very busy day for the grocery stores but, when you walk into Krogers, you can't see anybody in particular and you think it's because of the dim lighting but the registers are quiet and so is everything else. This was the scene Sept. 2nd when I ran to Clarksdale with only one stop to make and that was the grocery store. Becky Brett from Vance had the same problem so we waited it out together. I had flowers for Sunday church services plus a few groceries to get and she needed all the things she came for, so we all but felt our way along some isles to find our purchases and then waited to be checked. The registers finally came to life on their reserve generators, for the electricity was still off when we left.
    Actually, I'm glad we had to wait because one of her purchases caught my eye and we had time to talk about it. She had a colorful bag filled with pig's ears for her dog who, she said, simply loved them, so I bought a bag for our new dog and they're becoming her favorite treat, too. They are actually what they say they are...real pig ears! Our dog was eating the whole rawhide bone that I thought they were just supposed to gnaw on, so this is much better.
    Also, Becky's husband Kenny was due to have knee surgery this week which was required as a result of a motorcycle accident recently. We're hoping everything goes well for him. I've wondered if there was a stampede for groceries when the lights finally did come back on, with it being the 2nd day of the month and a Saturday, too. That situation was a "first" for me, except for the time of the ice storm in '94. This was a very hot, sunny day and I never found out what caused it all.
    Those from here who attended Jerry Orman's sister Jo Nelle Cooper's funeral in Helena on the 6th were Virgie Grissom, Savannah Kellum, Hayward and Mable Callicutt and Nelson and Jimmie Browning. Carroll and I were unable to attend due to Carroll not feeling up to it. He is still ailing but, hopefully, on the mend. Shortly after this sad time, Sammy and Jerry visited their children in Oxford where little three year old Triston was returning from school, which he was excited about attending two mornings a week. They asked him, "Triston, what did you learn today?" and he said, "Sit down! Sit down! Sit down!" We can always count on children to brighten the day.
    Aide Whittaker of Tallahassee arrived Thursday for a weekend visit with her mother Adelaide Steele. Adelaide is recovering from a fall she sustained at home and was taken by ambulance to the Medical Center but, fortunately, was able to return home with only minor injuries.
    Mrs. Naida Pearson has returned home after spending a few weeks in Rehab in Indianola. Wilma Dyess is home from the hospital where she was taken by ambulance after falling at home. After a couple of days and some tests, she was able to return home where she now has in-home care.
    Sympathy goes to the Leonard Pattersons and the Billy Pattersons in the death of their mother, Mrs. Betty Patterson, formerly of Rome before moving to Flowers Manor.
    James and Marilyn Bruister of Tylertown visited his mother Daysidel Bruister-Berryhill recently during the severe heat and dryness, before the recent rains. The roadside in front of our house was suddenly ablaze one day, probably from somebody's cigarette but who knows. Since Carroll was ailing, I was trying to put it out before it got to the cotton field when Jimbo Dunavent, our next door neighbor, came to the rescue. Carroll called the fire department which never answered. So much for that! Fighting fire on an already hot day certainly makes you appreciate those firefighters where fire rages for days and days.
    Anne Starr, accompanied by Eula Mae Luckett of Dublin, conducted a two day workshop onRibbon Embroidery in Jackson on the 6th and 7th. Anne is an accomplished needlecrafter and can do so many beautiful things.
    On September 24th First Baptist Church (my church) will have a Cornerstone Opening Celebration where the cornerstone, sealed in 1951, will be opened and the contents examined before being resealed for a specified time. Dr. "Rocky" Henriques will bring the morning Message. Special music will be provided by Gina Pearson and Sarah McClure. The noon meal will be served in Everett Fellowship Hall before the opening of the Cornerstone. The invitation is out to all members, former members, friends, relatives and interested parties who would like to attend. That's Sunday, September 24th, for a day of fellowshipping and coming together.
    That's it, again, from Tutwiler where Friends of the Tutwiler Community Education Center met Thursday night, making plans for the building of a gym next door to the Education Center. The Education Center is located in the beautifully renovated building that once housed businesses like the Western Auto, Stovall Cleaners (where Melanie as a tot called the owner "Mr. Snowball") and Billy Kent's Automotive Repair Shop. Now the gym will be alongside the center where the Fire Dept. and Johnie Lane's TV Repair Shop used to be. Bill Wenzel is the architect and Wright Steel has received the contract to build. "Digging will begin soon" and we're excited about it, so everybody is asked to lend your support in whatever way you can help.

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News from Tutwiler
by Janie Bruister

    The First Baptist Church in Tutwiler was built in 1951 and, sealed in the cornerstone, was a box containing memorabilia to be opened in the then far off year 2000.On Sunday, September 24th, almost 130 peope came from just about everywhere to celebrate this event. Bro. Rocky Henriques, a former pastor, brought a wonderful message on the one constant we can put our trust in and that is, no matter how much we change or the world changes, Christ is the same yesterday, today and forever. Many changes have come about during the twenty years since Rocky was pastor here, to him, to us and to the community and he told a funny story to illustrate what a difference twenty years makes. "At the age of 92, Oliver Wendell Holmes was walking in the park with a friend when they met a very pretty young lady that he looked at, even to the point of turning to watch her some more, and his comment was...Oh, to be 70 again!"
    Former music director Sara McClure of Shaw, Gina Pearson and the choir, with Rose Hays at the piano, delivered powerful messages in song. The choir was filled to capacity including two former music directors, Bill Moore of Clarksdale and Danny Kellum of Antioch, Tn. and former choir members, Barbara Wright Wood from Athens, Alabama and Marjorie Cox of Clarksdale. Former pastor Dr. Clarence Young gave the closing prayer and blessed the food as well. The ladies of the church and the church's hostess committee had every kind of dish imaginable to feed this large group of friends and family.
    Sara McClure, Bro. Rocky, Jean Thomas and Bill Moore entertained with several hymns during the meal.
    After the meal, the cornerstone was opened but the box containing all the memorabilia was soldered together quite well and it took some doing to open it. It's of interest to note that Johnie Lane soldered this shut and 50 years later was the one who fetched the tool and opened it. Among its contents was a list of the Building Committee which consisted of J.B. Ray who was pastor at that time; all the deacons who were G.A. Buckner, Tom Jennings, Robert Smith, Robert Miller, Lewis Kellum, Wayburn Daniels, Wm. D. Knight and three other people: Rolin Weatherall, Mrs. Wm. D. Knight and Mrs. Buren Box. There was a picture of the first wedding held in the church of Martha Jean Blaine to Herman Walker. Her brother Harold Blaine was a member of the wedding party and was present Sunday for the celebration. He now lives at Winona. There was a picture of the first funeral held in the new church and that was of little Mary Ellen Childress who was affectionately called "Red" because of her hair. She died of lockjaw resulting from getting a splinter in her foot. She has relatives Dickie and Eva Childress still living in Tutwiler. The first new member to the new church was Mrs. Less Barton, a Methodist and the mother of Polly Jennings. The cost of the original portion of the church building was $36,000.00 and was paid for in less than five years. The total number of young men reared in this church since its orginization in 1908 who became ministers is 8, plus a young lady who was given permission by the church to attend a summer session at New Orleans Seminary.
    Those attending from out of town were Rachel Everett of Memphis and her neice Ann Chatham Carter of Indiana, both decendants of the J.J. Everetts who donated the land for the church to be built on and in whose honor Everett Hall is named; Agnes and Marion Sullivan of Batesville, Bill Bruister, Bill Moore, Geneva Moore Magee, Colleen Moore Vaughn, Harmon and Marjorie Cox, Hal, Tammy and Halle Moore, and Dr. Glenn Gates, all of Clarksdale; Diane Orman Smith of Cleveland; Bruce, Nancy, Grace, Gregory and Tristan Orman of Oxford; Shirley Brougher of Charleston; Bro. Truman Scarborough of Grenada; Roy and Caroline Shook of Paynes; Millie Smith of Sumner; Bradley and Nena Jennings of Wesson; Joe Kellum and daughter, Laura, of Memphis; Vera Jo Bryant of Ruleville; Dr. and Mrs. Clarence Young of Brandon; Austin and Ruth Lovell and grandson, Don, Jr., of Rienzi, Ms.; Bro. Rocky, Maryann and Jennifer Henriques of Jackson and my sister and her husband, Yvonne and John Williams of Cedar Hill, Tn.
    There's not space to name all our locals and regulars but do need to mention Agnes Martindale being there because she's back home from getting therapy and extended visits with her children, convalescing after breaking her pelvis. She echoed my sentiment that "there's no place like home".
    Joe Pryor of Webb continues to improve after surgery and hospital stay in Oxford. He and Martha are celebrating the arrival of their first great grandchild and their visit to see him in Huntsville, Alabama.
    Ada Frances Guest of Sumner is home from several days in the Clarksdale Medical Center and, even though I've not talked to any of the family myself, I talked to a friend who had who says that Bouldin Marley is doing well after his surgery in Clarksdale and we're happy for him. W.D. "Red" Walters of Sumner had surgery in the Greenwood Hospital and Joey Russell spent a couple of days hospitalized from an accident he incurred at work. Wilma Dyess has returned to the Ruleville Convalescent Center after being released from the hospital and returning home for a few days. Congratulations to Tutwiler's Dr. Anne Brooks who is the incoming Chief of Staff of NWMR Medical Center in Clarksdale for the coming year.
    That's about it, again, from Tutwiler where in my last article I mentioned calling the Fire Dept. and not getting an answer. It turns out we were calling the wrong number. Fire Chief Richard Gipson says all you have to do is dial 911 now. All the firemen wear pagers so they can quickly respond to calls. I commend these men who stand ready and give of their time and energy to such a worthy and necessary part of our everyday lives.

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News from Tutwiler
by Janie Bruister

    Preparations are underway for the new gymnasium to be built next to the Tutwiler Educational Center. The Educational Center is the sponsor of this worthy endeavor which will provide a place for young people to spend their leisure hours and for others to walk or exercise, and simply to provide a place for all ages to enjoy various activities. A Fish Fry was held in the Railroad Park on Saturday to benefit this project and was well attended in spite of the cold and windy weather. We were participating in the Pink Palace Crafts Fair in Memphis at the same time where it was even colder and the windchill factor was extreme...at least for October. We've exhibited for many years through all kinds of weather and this time endured weather to rival the postman's motto. Otherwise it was a great three days with people coming in great numbers. We love this Fair...it's like one giant picnic with food vendors located on the outer perimeter, offering delectables such as roasted corn on the cob, jerk chicken and pork plates, chicken on a stick, fried catfish, those Germantown bar-b-ques and the most delicious apple dumplings you've ever tasted. That's just a portion of the selections to be enjoyed at picnic tables or sitting on the ground. The crafters have to meet certain standards of workmanship to be eligible to participate, so the two hundred or so exhibiting and demonstrating craftsmen have lots to offer to even the most discriminating shopper.
    We never go anywhere without having a car story to tell when we get back and this time was no different. Just let me say, be mindful about leaving your car trunk or doors open for long periods of time so your battery won't lose its oomph! You get home a lot earlier if you don't.
    The Kimmerer house on Church Street is being readied for moving to another location. We lived across the street from the "Kimmerer girls" for twenty or so years and loved them. They were Viola Monroe and Marion Tune, both nurses for many years and very good ones, too. After their older sister Agnes Mae became bedridden, they brought her back home and cared for her til her death. Viola was easy going, but it took a certain amount of finesse with Marion which most people never attained. If she liked you things went well and for all those years we had a good relationship.
    Once, when our daughter Melanie was small (just starting school), she overheard Marion telling about "getting a foreign body" out of a patient's ear and, "Well, wow," she thought as she pictured Marion pulling an actual person from someone's ear, "Could she really do that?!" Seeing that house go brings back memories and a certain amount of sadness, but time brings change.
    John and Sandra Moyer have their house for sale. While we hate to see them move, we hope the change will be good for them as well as for whoever buys their home.
    Sam and Jerry Orman attended her hometown's high school reunion in Hollandale on Saturday. It was a fun time seeing classmates and acquaintances she had not seen in years. About 200 attended. Their children Bruce, Nancy, Gregory and Tristan came from Oxford for dinner on Sunday.
    The 1940 Webb Swanlake High School class tried to have a 60th year reunion. There are only 6 members still living and only 2 were present. Johnie Lane lives here and James Prtchard came from Etoil, Portugal. The other four are J.J. Savage, Virgie Shine, Sam Luckett and Sara Beth King Meeks, all of whom were unable to attend. They talked to one of their teaches, Faith Ferguson, by phone, who lives in Virginia but was unable to attend also. Reunions don't necessarily have to be big to be good.
    Congratulations to two of Tutwiler's pretty girls, Elizabeth Jennings and Corley Luckett for being selected as Maids in Lee Academy's Homecoming Court. They are classmates of Cecile, an exchange student from Mexico. She is the third student Tommie and Cindy Pugh have hosted. Her second home here is with Lisa and Rodney Burton and children, Megan and Dane, with whom she rides to school every day.
    Congratulations also to Keith Turnipseed of Sumner for being named to the 2000-01 Cotton Leadership Class by the National Cotton Council's Cotton Leadership Development Committee.
    With Fall's arrival, Texas beckons Anne Starr back to her home there for the winter months. Dr. Ngoc Tran of Memphis visited Savannah Kellum over the weekend. Anne Barnes and Barbara Jennings have returned from Texas where they visited Anne's brother and his wife, Harlan and Mary Meyer for several days. Charles and Jean Thomas have returned from visiting their daughter Sandy in Knoxville and going on to the Smokies to enjoy the fall foliage.
    Funeral services were held on Wednesday for George Dong of Webb. George and his family owned and operated a grocery store in Tutwiler until they retired a few years ago. Sympathy goes to his children Janet, Franklin and Ronald and their families.
    Another former Tutwiler resident, Don Lomenick of Central, Utah lost his wife to cancer on October 2nd. She was the former Marie Hunter of Greenwood and was brought back there for burial.
    A former Sumner resident, Frances Mitchener Scott, sister of Frank Mitchener, died on October 8th and was brought home for burial at Woodlawn Cemetery. Our heartfelt sympathy goes to all of their families.
    That's about it, again, from Tutwiler where (borrowing a phrase from Garrison Keillor) "the men are all brave, the women are good-looking and the kids above average."

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    Not so long ago the peak vacation season was mid-summer...like July. Now, it's more into October. There are vast numbers of middle age to older people traveling nowadays and many want to go where Mother Nature's paint brush has splashed coats of many colors on every bush and tree. We witnessed her handiwork all through Tennessee's Smokey Mountains on a little trip we just took. Actually, the beautiful reds, oranges and yellows began as we detoured through Mississippi's Oxford where vibrant colors were everywhere, then on to Red Bay, Alabama where our son, Cally, enjoys all that beautiful color every day.
    The Smokies became a sea of breathtaking colors as the mountains overlapped and stretched as far as the eye could see. From the curves around Swannee to the fog at Hiwassee River, we saw many towns with names like our own such as Cleveland, Charleston and Greeneville (with the E). Among all those beautiful trees and hills is the exit for Dunlap, TN. where Becky and Ed Wellman live, but Becky was in Tutwiler visiting her parnts, James and Annette Brand, at the time we passed by. We thought about friends Bill and Inger Flautt who moved from here to Chattanoga a few years ago as we neared there as well as Sandy Martin, daughter of Charles and Jean Thomas of Tutwiler, who lives there as well. We couldn't help but think about how long it would take to get somewhere if you were unable to bypass the cities now.
    Daysidel Bruister-Berryhill was traveling in the same area at the same time. Her friend Bea Haynes of Lambert went, too, as well as Daysidel's daughter Delanne Billingsly and her friend Aileen Wagner of Como. We all went to some of the same places but never at the same time. We're not early risers like they are, so we came along later.
    Actually, the day we left, the "Merrymakers", representing the different churces in the North Central Baptist Association, were to meet at Corinth Church, out from Charleston. We loaded up the church van with our caseroles, etc., arriving at a closed and deserted building because the meeting had been cancelled, only we had failed to get the word. At that point in time, it was a challenge to make merry but we did. We soaked up all the color the hills had to offer which was medicinal in effect, came back to our church at Tutwiler and partook of our culinary contributions and made merry! It was a great send off for us, having fun with good friends and good food.
    The Tuesday before, the TNT Group met for lunch and were entetained by Johnie Lane who shared human interest stories people send him from time to time. I missed it because I was giving the program at the John Pulliam chapter of Colonial Dames in Clarksdale. The meeting was conducted by Mrs. R.P. Turner, Jr., former Vice President and Chaplain, filling the unexpired term of Mrs. W.D. Patterson who died September 9th.
    On Wednesday the 25th, Linda Wall of Cleveland gave a delightful account of Lillian Jackson Braun's "The Cat Who..." books and, in particular, The Cat Who Could Read Backwards, at the Friends of the Library lunch time Sandwich With Books meeting. Linda is the daughter of Adelaide Steele. Other special guests were Bess White and Dessie Caulfield of Water Valley and Ruston Sossaman.
    NARFE met Friday at Effie Fords home out from Charleston with members from both sides of the county present. NARFE is the National Association of Retired Federal Employees...Sammy and Jerry Orman and Carroll and I were there from this side of the county.
    Congratulations to Ellen Whitten, daughter of Thax and Libby Whitten, for being selected to attend the National Young Leaders Conference in Washington. Ellen is one of 350 outstanding high school students who have demonstrated leadership potential and scholastic merit.
    My friend Tom Ellenberg (now of Charleston) called to chat and tell me about Jack Flautt breaking his leg and being hospitalized in the Greenwood-Leflore Hospital. We certainly wish him the best. Tom and I went to grade school together at the old Webb-Swan Lake School which has now been torn down. I recently got a letter from Wesley Walker of Smithfield, Virginia who reads my column in the Sun Sentinel. He has cousins in Sumner, Marguerite Smith Webb ad Harriett Casburn Cato. He is a 1942 graduate of Webb-Swan Lake School.
    It's good to report that Ben Pryor is home from the hospital again. He was in the hospital in Jackson twice during the past two weeks with heart problems but is home now and doing better.
    H.O. Pullen remains hospitalized in Clarksdale after having surgery last week. Wife Ann and daughter Maria are at his bedside. They are all in our prayers.
    That's it again from Tutwiler where it's still dry and dusty...wonder if a rain dance would help!?

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News from Tutwiler
by Janie Bruister

    This is the morning after...
    It is early Wednesday morning now as I begin to draft this weeks article. Actually, I have another day before deadline but it's been assigned another task so, you see, it's the morning after the election. It was still uncertain last night who would be our next President and nothing seems to have changed this morning. From all accounts, it may take even longer to determine this fact. However it turns out we know that one family's life will change drastically and never be the same again, while the other one missed it by a hair. Who knows which one will be the most thankful in the final analysis.
    The rain we've wanted for so long has finally arrived...a steady flow of gentle wetness. Even though we needed it and wanted it, planned outdoor activities had to be adjusted somewhat. Jimbo and Barbara Dunavent, who live next door to us, had made preparations for an outdoor get-together of the Dunavent and Bruister families for last weekend. The Dunavents love music, singing, etc., and had a stage out back for the band but the rains came, along with about a hundred people, but it didn't dampen their spirits. They "jammed" indoors. Chester manned the grill turning out succulent ribs, prime rib roasts, pork loins and the like all day and into the night. Even though it didn't go as planned, everybody had a wonderful and memorable time.
    Singing is what Fifth Sunday Hymn Sing is about. The area Baptist Churches gathered the last Sunday night in October at Tutwiler Church for a festive time of singing and fellowshipping. Sumner, Webb, Rome, Friendship and Tutwiler were the curches participating, so I think of it as the Tutrovansum family. It's uplifting (I know it is for me) to hear many happy voices singing praises to the Lord.
    Chance Smith is sporting a well autographed cast after breaking his arm a couple of weeks ago during a ballgame. Even with the break and cast, he has continued to play. Chance is the son of Ronnie and Georgianna Smith.
    The Rev. Jimmy Kellum of Memphis came last weekend and helped his mother, Savannah Kellum, see to getting the yard in shape for Fall and Winter. Her nephew, Rev. Doug Kellum, came a few days later for a visit and enjoyed some of the late garden vegetables, like fried okra, from Agnes Martindale's garden.
    The Rev. J.B. Hays and family Rose, Joel and Anna have returned from attending the Pastors Conference and Mississippi Baptist Convention in Jackson. Adelaide Steele had doctors appointments last week in Memphis. Her sister Dessie Caulfield and friend Bess White of Water Valley visited her recently. Hayward and Mable Callicutt had his nephew and wife, Edwin and Anne Callicutt of Holly Springs, visit Sunday. After attending church with them, they enjoyed the Lion's Club's First Sunday Buffet which was festive and delicious. Our grandson Sebe visited his friend Rip Woodward for a few days this week. Rip lives in Clarksdale and attends Mississippi Southern at Hattiesburg.
    Susan Melton was shot in the neck on Friday during a holdup in the store where she worked in Glendora. She was airlifted to the trauma center in Memphis and released on Saturday. She miraculously escaped being killed or seriously injured. The three young robbers fled without the money after the shooting occured. She didn't realize the young teens were serious about robbing her until the shooting happened.
    Sunday will be the beginning of the North Central Baptist Mission Celebration. The Missionary for Tutwiler will be Chaplain Gearald Metzdorf, Chaplain of the Georgia State Prison. He will be staying in the home of Barbara Jennings, who will stay with her daughter during this coming week in order for him to be our guest. Activities are planned for the week with nineteen missionaries participating in Baptist Churches throughout the Association. Webb Baptist Church wil participate as well as Friendship on this side of the county.
    The NARFE Group will have its Thanksgiving meeting Friday at the Orman's home. Charleston side of the county folks are Mary Harpole, Mavis Newton, Earleen Grisham, Effie Ford, Thomas Hulland, Helen Peters and Janice Prigmore.
    That's about it, again, from Tutwiler where we salute our veterans this Veterans Day weekend and say thanks again for the sacrifices made that we all might continue to enjoy freedom and prosperity.

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News from Tutwiler
by Janie Bruister

    The following story is an account of a 19 year old young man from Haiti who had been invited to the United States to study. At the end of his tenure here he was to speak at a send-off dinner in his honor. When he rose to speak, he said, "I would like to thank you for inviting me here. I've really enjoyed this time in the United States but, I am also very glad to be going home. You have so much in America that I'm beginning to lose my grip on my day to day dependency on Christ."
    This young man had never before slept between sheets, never eaten three meals in the same day, nor had he ever used indoor plumbing and certainly never visited a McDonalds.
    We do live in the land of plenty! I had never seen the parking lot at Krogers filled clear to the highway till the day before Thanksgiving, so I know many were stuffed over the holiday. Last year we participated in the food program for the needy and elderly, serving well over a thousand plates. With helping hands and our government and religious programs, most don't grow hungry. Not so around the world.
    Many family gatherings took place over the holiday. Adelaide Steele's home was full. Her daughters, Adelaide Whitaker and family, Heather and Geof Burda and 9 month old daughter Hannah from Tallahassee, Florida; Linda and Steve Silor from Atlanta, Ga.; Linda and Ronnie Wall and Mrs. Wall from Cleveland, Ms.; Sandee and Lenny Jones and his mother Mrs. Shirley Jones from Memphis, Tn. and Susan and Jay Derby from Arkadelphia, Ark. all were there. She also welcomed her cousin J.B. Haman and wife Peggy from Rabun Gap, N.C. whom she had not seen in 50 years. He is a retired professor of English at Georgia Tech. So this holiday was very special for her and her family.
    Harlan and Mary Meyer from Midlothian, Texas were guests of his sister, Anne Barnes, who hosted her children and grandchildren for Thanksgiving dinner. Afterwards Harlan, Mary, Anne and Barbara Jennings left for Biloxi and New Orleans. Barbara also hosted her big family for Turkey dinner, as did Jerry and Sammy Orman. And many other families gathered for that special time together.
    We recently had door knob trouble. The front door wouldn't stay closed and the back door wouldn't open, so Carroll had to replace knobs on both before our children came. Cally and Lauren came from Red Bay, Ala. and Shelley and Macey came from Starkville, Ms. The Brands, James and Annette, have returned from visiting their daughter Becky and husband Ed in Dunlap, Tn. Jared Jenkins' birthday was close to the holiday and he celebrated with a skating party at the Youth Center Gym on Saturday.
    James Martindale and son Charles came by for a brief visit to relatives last week. They had come to Memphis from West Munro, La. where Charles did a concert, playing religious music on a duck caller...a very unique experience. Charles is the Minister of Music at First Baptist in West Munro, La.
    The computer seems to be the link now in the 'tie that binds'...Johnie Lane made contact with Buster Simpkins recently via the internet. The Simpkins and Erhilics lived here back in the fifties, sixties and seventies and had a variety store for years and Buster served on the Town Board at one time.
    Traffic is not just hazardous during the holidays, because accidents happen all the time. Mrs. Lorean Weeks, Millie Smith and Erlene Harrington were involved in a mishap recently and thought they all came out ok, but unfortunately Mrs. Weeks continues to have problems. She's been hospitalized in Memphis. Bouldin Marley had surgery at Baptist East where he is improving. Our prayers are with them.
    Warren Lewis, formerly of Rome, died in the Nursing Home where he lived in Little Rock. He was brought back on the 15th to Rome for burial.
    Frank Guest, brother of Virgie Grissom, was buried in Vicksburg on Saturday the 18th. And Ruby Garner of Webb died at her home in Webb the day before Thanksgiving. Our sympathy goes to all these families.
    That's about it, again, from Tutwiler where the pecans are falling...not quite as softly as the leaves, but both get your attention.     

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    Somewhere in my memory is a cartoon's definition of a certain stage in life...get up...survive...go to bed. Don't we all experience this at times, especially when we have more to do than we can possibly get done. The holiday season can become such a time if we're not careful. Here it is December and I'm finding myself resisting having to get that 10 foot tree out, string all those lights, etc., not to mention all the cooking, cleaning and everything that goes along with it. These are the things I've always enjoyed doing and yes, even looked forward to doing every year, but this "ole gray mare ain't what she used to be" and I've been leaning toward that surviving bit more and more.
    One thing that helps is listening to Christmas music, which you hear everywhere you go. We participated in the Chimneyville Craft Show in Jackson this past weekend. This is the Mississippi Craftsman's Guild's annual show held in the Trademart building. Only Guild members can participate, which both Carroll and Melanie are, with Carroll being a Fellow and a former Board Member. We had a great time as usual, with the best part always being the visiting with other members and seeing friends and acquaintances we've not seen for a while. A new member exhibiting this year was Bonnie Jones from Natchez who is a neice of the late Mary Flautt of Tutwiler and a cousin of Panny Mayfield. She made beautiful fiber dolls and old world Santas with heads and hands of polymer clay, which attracted her to Melanie's work in clay. We met a Mr. Lowe who is a cousin of Freida Kimzey; saw Tony Chandler of Clinton who grew up in Sumner and Dr. Nash Noble, a friend of Adelaide Steele's. Also, Julia Jopp Bryan and children, Taylor and Jennifer. Julia grew up in Webb and now lives in Crystal Springs where she is friends with our Hennington relatives. Mary Smith from Batesville sent her regards to Jim and Nelle Wolfe, remembering the fine job Jim did on refinishing some pieces of furniture and building a mantle for her home. She highly praised his workmanship and rightly so. He is a fine craftsman. Saw a young woman who exclaimed (upon seeing where we were from) that she had gone to school with a Clay Stillions from Tutwiler! That would be Sandy and, I assume, during college years and her name is now Jacqui Carter Katool. Shug Carter Dyson who attended Delta State with Carroll's sister Bettye, visited when she realized who we were. We missed seeing Julia and Ben Yandell who are always in attendance for either the Patron's Party or the show itself, so we're hoping they were just out of town and not ailing. The talented Tutwiler Quilters were there with their beautiful handwork.
    Our lifelong friend Charles Catledge who grew up in Tutwiler came as he usually does. Charles and family have a "Tutwiler Room" built in their home with lumber that actually came from a building here. So many, like him, have such close ties with Tutwiler they have it with them all the time.
    Mara Califf was scheduled to be there but didn't make it. I believe she's the only other member we have in the Guild from this area...and I consider Clarksdale our area.
    A lot of work goes into preparing and participating in this show and one of the things that helped me to enjoy it even more was the background music. Even though it was repeated many times throughout the weekend, the smooth sounds of a saxophone and lyrics describing Christmas in all its glory eased me into the holiday spirit and wanting to enjoy every facet of it.
    Congratulations to Tutrovansum area students listed in Who's Who Among High School Students for 1999-2000. Of course, some are in college now. They are David Athey, Audrey Burnside, James D. Johnson, Jr., Nadia McIntosh, Michael Bland, Julye Clark, Corley Luckett, Shenika Brown, Tanaka Busby, Laura Dong, Arthinia Saulsberry, Quartisha Kindle and Nichelle Webb.
    Also, congratulations to Caysi Baker, daughter of John and Jerri Baker and Natalie Ellington, daughter of David and Nellie Ellington for being chosen beauties at Strider Academy. (They both look very much like their mothers.)
    A big, happy congratulations goes to Meadie and Billy Joe Williams on the arrival of her first grandchild, a darling little girl born to Stephanie and Mack Ely. She is being welcomed by her Uncle Michael, great grandmother Margaret Rice and a host of other relatives and friends.
    The birth of a child is such a glorious thing anytime and will certainly be the focus during the coming season of that wonderful event 2000 years ago. Have you seen His star? It shines every night...if you haven't, take a look tonight.
    That's about it, again, from Tutwiler where the annual Christmas Parade will be Saturday, the 9th. There will be colorful floats and ole Santa just might be there, too!

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