November 28, 2006

November 28, 2006

CHAMPION—November 28, 2006


        The good news from Champion this week is that family and friends have been enjoying each other’s company.  Harley and Barbara Krider were down from Illinois to visit and look after their cattle.

        Donald and Rita Krider also made a rare visit and everyone of that bunch has enjoyed the opportunity to spend some time together.  Foster Emit Wiseman was the youngest to attend Thanksgiving dinner at the home of Vivian Floyd up in Rogersville. There was quite a crowd and much good food and fellowship.

        Zoey Louise and Alexandra Jean of Austin, TX, hosted their grandparents for a pleasant visit.  There were long walks, trips to the park, many stories read and much good food enjoyed.  Grannie came home with a cold but thinks it was well worth the trouble.  People will be dogging her until she at last wearies of showing off the pictures.  The Hamiltons over on 76 Highway were fairly overrun by grandsons and others over the holiday, but they don’t seem to be able to muster up any complaints.  That sweet Grandmother over on 14 Highway whose birthday was on Thanksgiving Day is reported to have had an excellent celebration.  Acknowledgement by loved ones is the best gift….  Love and Gratitude.

        The active solicitation of old stores from the past around here has gleaned this gem.  It has been said that Morton Upshaw could hit a sucker with a gig from thirty feet easy.  Often enough he’d come up with more than one sucker on the same gig.  Russell Upshaw is reported to have given Gary Procter his first chew of tobacco when Gary was about six years old.  He was sick all day.  Please send your stories or items to Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood, MO 65717, drop them off at the Champion Store, or send them by email to Champion News.  Please.

        Concerning the photos of the albino white tailed deer, this response was received.  “Hi, I sent it to my Brother to see, I have to say it’s the sweetest thing I ever saw. And it does look like a baby goat, I can see why they mistook it for one.  I’m going to send this to all my email buds so they can have a look.  I live north of Dora store on W highway off of 14 and my other Brother saw my cat playing with five doe’s when he was hunting this afternoon, it’s so cool to see how animals interact with each other, it’s kinda unheard of to see a ones house cat playing with a bunch of deer.  He said my cat Timmy would run up to the deer and they would chase him around for a while then he would change to another deer and do the same thing. LOL, I do love my animals.  Thanks so much.  Donna.”  Again, it was learned that those photos were not taken from around here.  It is unclear where or when they were taken.  It was a case of misinformation, a mistake.  Here is another response however:  “To Whom It May Concern,  My mother and I are originally from Ava and get the Douglas County Herald.  We saw your article today about the deer that you rescued, and it said that we could see a picture of it…..however, the only connection given was your e-mail address.  Can you send us some pictures of the baby deer?  It sounds so cute and we would LOVE to see it!!!!    Sincerely,  Sherry and Faye Sims.”  (We did not rescue the deer, but did send the pictures to Sherry and Faye.)  Anyone who is interested in seeing these photos should send his email address to the Champion News email box.  It is odd and interesting that some of the nicest feedback has come as a result of this momentous blunder.

        Children of all ages are excited about the possibility of snow toward the end of the week.  The warm days have some people spoiled.  Some people don’t have all their wood in.  Some people have not yet mulched their tender plants.  There are some turnip patches that could use some attention.  There are garden hoses laying around in some peoples yards and other examples of neglect and general sloth.  When the snow and ice cover everything, it will all look clean and neat.  There will be plenty of time to worry about those other things when the thaw comes.   The snow is beautiful, but it can be treacherous.  Safe and prudent behavior does not rule out having fun and enjoying the spectacle.  Champion is, after all, a spectacular place!


November 13, 2006

November 13, 2006

CHAMPION—November 13, 2006


        More good news from Champion relates to our good neighbors over in Vanzant.  The fundraiser for the up-keep of the Vanzant Community Building was held Saturday night the 11th of November.  Booger County Bluegrass entertained a lively crowd of local yokels and deer hunters.  They all enjoyed the chili as well as ham & beans cooked up by Sharon Sikes, and they forked over some nice donations to express their appreciation.  Danny Dry was the auctioneer for the homemade pies and a few other items.  Mrs. Esther Wrinkles’ coconut cream pie brought $60.00!

        There will be a benefit for Benny Pool, Booger County Bluegrass base player, at Squires this coming Saturday starting about noon at the community building at the firehouse.  There will be an auction and a lot of good music.  Honey Creek, will play as well as Backyard Bluegrass, the Kellies, and Wayne Anderson’s group The Blades of Bluegrass.  These kinds of activities generate “bushels of good” in the community, not just for the individual or the specific cause, but for everybody who participates.  It’s a good feeling to help good people who can use it. Everyone has been on the receiving end of good works at some time or another.

        A correction to last weeks news:  that wizened old Grandfather Weltanschauung had his birthday on the 8th of the month instead of the 6th and so it turns out that he is two whole days younger than we thought!  While youth is certainly a treasure, who knows what he might have accomplished if he had just been born two days earlier.  One of his many good friends, one of those Teeter Creek Lieberts, became a grandfather again himself on that very same day.  Willow had a beautiful son out in Arizona.  Grandmother Jan was there and all is well.

        A clever fellow up on Clever Creek said that he had heard that chiggers will lower cholesterol.  There has been a lot of gunfire around Champion but no big deer stories have been reported.  Louise and Wilburn host several hunters every year.  They left Wednesday morning with only one deer among them.  Something amazing was reported by a dear acquaintance over on the other side of Ava.  It is a real Albino Whitetail deer, just hours old.  It ran out in front of a car and was almost hit and was initially taken for a lost baby goat.  There was no mother nearby.  It took it’s bottle of food and followed them around the house doing fine.  The folks that found it did some investigating and learned that this ‘freak of nature’ is only one in more than a million ever born.  They called the Zoo and Fossil Rim who were both interested in taking it.  They have decided to send it to a Rehab farm.  Maybe it will make it in captivity somewhere and be appreciated.  It is such a rare occurrence and the finders really would like to keep him.  They know that it is not a good idea for the animal and also know that it is illegal to do so.  He is snow white, with pink eyes, ears, nose and hooves, a tiny guy.  Pictures are available online at Champion News.

        Good Gravy!  That squirrel hunt scheduled for last Thursday was a great success.  Seven big reds were taken between the two hunters and quite a few others were seen.  No use taking more than you can eat.  It has been said that squirrel makes the very best gravy.  (Some like to make it with white corn meal.)  The ladies were also quite successful in their junking expedition. The new bookstore in Mansfield called “A New Chapter“ proved to be a goldmine for Esther Howard who is a regular bibliophile.  She also wears nice hats and beautiful smiles.  It’s a joy to be near her.

        The prospect of snow looms.  Some hope for a hard winter.  It brings to mind the old adage….”cold hands, warm heart.”  Someone recently filled in the next part of that saying  with “dirty feet and no sweetheart.”  This was told to her by her mother, Gladys Joyce.  Any other versions of the saying would be gladly received at Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367 Norwood, MO 65717, at the Champion Store, or at Champion News. Recent email to the Champion email box is to the effect: “Just want to let you know how much we enjoy your weekly column in the Douglas County Herald.  As newcomers to the area, it’s real interesting to read about the current adventures and history of people in our neighborhood.  Thanks for your efforts.  Bill & Karen Griswold, Route 2 Box 363, Norwood.” The response to their message is as follows:  “As this area has historically lost so many of its native young people to other parts due to economic necessity, the newcomers have played a large part in keeping the community viable.  There has always been a steady stream of people in and out of the area.  What is apparent is that this is a hard country, but it is probably not much harder than any other part of the country when you are new to it and just getting acquainted.  We all came from someplace at one time or another, so ‘Welcome Home!’  We are glad to have you.  Thanks for joining the Skyline VFD and for choosing this part of the world to settle.  We’ll see you around.”

        Some of those Griswolds were present at the regular meeting of the Skyline Area Volunteer Fire Department Ladies’ Auxiliary.  The meeting was held at the Champion Store on Tuesday night.  In attendance were Susie and Karen Griswold, Esther Wrinkles, Corrine Rodgers, Fae Krider, Louise Hutchison, Sharon Sikes, Betty Henson, Wilda Moses, Mary Smoody, Ruth Hamilton and Betty Dye.  That is about as many women as have ever been in the store at one time.  It was a productive meeting with detailed discussions of the gun fund-raiser and the upcoming chili supper.  The gun is soon to be purchased and tickets will be made available immediately thereafter.  It is reported that a hand-made red, white and blue Texas Star quilt will be donated to the Auxiliary as an additional fund raiser.  Items are already being collected for the silent auction.  Various members and spouses are securing the musical entertainment and excitement is running high for what will prove to be another outstanding event.  The opportunity to visit together and to get acquainted was not lost.  Ms. Henson provided excellent refreshments and a cozy fire on a cool evening. The group will meet again in  January for more planning…the secret to the Skyline VFD’s great successes.  All our little communities overlap to make this a wonderful place to live.  The country is beautiful and so are the people.


November 6, 2006

November 6, 2006

CHAMPION—November 6, 2006


        Good news from Champion celebrates the birthday Sunday the 5th of Sharon Upshaw!  She’s just a kid!  She is married to such a much older man. He has been sparking her for years with homemade ice cream, music, and who knows what all?

        There was a shower held at Skyline for Deborah Barker on Saturday.  The baby will arrive in January.  Those attending were:  Nancy Barker (Grandma to be), Carrie Stewart, Inez Barker (Great Grandmother to be), Sharon Upshaw (Grandmother to be), Lucille Gayman (Great Grandmother to be), Loretta Upshaw, Elva Upshaw, Vivian Floyd, Lucille Ketchum (Great Great Aunt to be), Sue Upshaw, Fae Krider, Kay Johnston, Phoebe Ward & Madelynne, Liz Johnston, Staci Krider, Esther Wrinkles, Theresa Wrinkles, and Yvonne Unger.  It was a pleasant gathering with many beautiful gifts including some distinctive handmade items.  Deborah is the special education teacher at Skyline School and is special herself to a lot of people.

        Mrs. Eva Powell has had the pleasure of having had all of her children home over this last week end.  Some of them have come from considerable distance to enjoy her fine company.  They are all grateful for the wonderful recent rains though mud is an issue for them.

        If the crow were to fly a straight flight southeast from Champion just two or three miles it might light on the porch of an octagonal brown house at the bottom of a hill.  It’s the home of a wizened old Grandfather whose birthday has just passed on the 6th of this month.  Grandsons Shamus, Zachary and Ethan probably have no understanding of just how old he really is.  They are fortunate for he is a mindful individual with an expansive weltanschauung who will always give them his full attention.  To them he will be timeless and ageless…forever young.  Nice going Gramps!

        Chester Chambers was buried at Denlow on Saturday the 4th.  He was Dean Brixey’s brother-in-law, his sister Jane’s husband.  Chester loved to sing and was once with a quartet that sang on the Willow Springs radio station.

        Sunday the 12th  is the anniversary  of the demise of Jack “Foxfire” Ryan, a real gentleman.  He was fun loving and generous of spirit.  He loved the old ways and the old days.  He loved kids and great ideas.  He was inventive and industrious.  Quick to laugh and slow to judge, he knew how to be a friend.

        A question has been raised as to the truth of the buzzard story that appeared here recently.  The owner of those calves that broke the fence escaping the awful fowl tumult first learned of the affair in the Herald and made a frantic phone call.  “Were those my cows?”  An absentee landlord and cattleman might sometimes be at a disadvantage in terms of keeping up with his stock.  It is his good fortune to have a vigilant brother looking out after his interests.  The facts of the buzzard story were detailed exactly as they were told and so any question of veracity should be addressed to the farm tenant and the brother both of whom were principals in the incident.  It has been reported that this absent land owner is recovering from a long illness. Hopefully concern over his distant properties will not slow his recuperation.  A sister-in-law suggested that distress over his recent birthday may have exacerbated his ill temper as he is now so much older than both she and his own wife.  A trip home will be timely whenever it happens.

        A squirrel hunt is on for this week.  Raymond and Esther Howard spent Sunday with the Kriders and plans have been made to get out on a certain ridge early one morning this week to harvest some of those big reds.  The ladies will engage in an activity that they call ‘junking.’ Raymond and Esther live in Marshfield.  She is originally from Hannibal, MO.  She says that people are more friendly down here than they are up there.  Raymond grew up around Dora.  They moved to the Marshfield area in the 1950’s.  Champion is always more jolly place when they are visiting.

        Foster E. Wiseman, son of Tanna Jo and Roger,  is the proud owner of  a ukulele which he calls “Granddad’s mandolin.” He is working on a song about a rabbit and a log and has the “I know, I know” part of the chorus down pat.  Champions have plenty to brag about.  Feel free to do so at the Champion store, at Champion Items, Rt. 2, Box 367, Norwood 65717, or on-line at Champion News.

        The Ladies’ Auxiliary of the Skyline Area Volunteer Fire Department will have its regular meeting at the Champion store on Tuesday evening, November 14th.  On the agenda are plans for the upcoming chili supper and gun fundraiser.  Last year the gun fundraiser project turned into a free for all shoot out.  Everyone was lucky to have come out of it unscathed.  Skyline/Champion is lucky to have such productive women in its midst..  Some of them are election officials.  Hopefully many Champion residents will exercise their voting franchise.