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REFLECTIONS OF CHRISTMAS JOY! Yesterday I found value in the everyday world by just sitting with my husband in our car, watching the little and big ones slide down Library Hill. Every time one of them would hit a bump and spin around on the icy glaze, I was there with them. Every time they got off their spinning sleds and marched up the hill, a wonderful memory popped into my head. I remembered sliding down hill at Maplewood Park in Rochester as a little one. My twin brother Bob and I, along with many friends would trudge down Merrill St. from our home to the park - it was at least a mile - with our heavy snowsuits on, wearing boots, and hand/crocheted mittens, hats and scarves to keep us warm. The outfits weighed as much as we did! Trailing behind us was our shared sled - all shiny and new from the Christmas just past. We would meet many other friends at the Park and gaily define a wonderful day of fun and hot chocolate at the park pavilion. Some days we would bring our skates and swirl about the frozen pond, laughing and enjoying the company of many good friends. I remember the taste of clean snow ice cream. A drop of vanilla in the bowl filled with white treasure was a luxurious treat for all of us. I remember the power of laughter, and the much needed joy it brought to all of us. It was the time of the end of the Depression in the early 1940's and the sorrow of a world at war. I heard the news around me....I saw the star in the window as my older brother David was away serving our Country. I cried over his picture on the piano, and wished with all of my heart that he would come home safely. I was six years old. Today I respond to those memories with a touch of nostalgia, and a prayer of hope for the children of today and tomorrow. I have seen many generations flow in my time. Currently we are counting twelve grandchildren, and fourteen greats. We even take claim to being great, great, great aunt and uncle to brand new Elle Madison, and have welcomed a new great grandson - Anthony James. I have determined to understand the changes, but sometimes it is difficult when I remember the joys of days gone by for I wish for the memories of joyful contentment, not of fear in all directions. I wish for all children the simplicity of a life well spent, and the joy of good and happy experiences in their now lives. Life will respond to all of the above, for it always has. It is this determination of the natural order of the world as a whole which now manifests for all to experience. It is the time of The Peacemakers' Walk and many things will be magnified which are in need of correction. Gaining control of my own need to worry about the future, I wish each and every one of you a most joyful holiday season, a wonderful, blessed Christmas and the fullness of a life worth leading for after all, isn't that what it's all about? Do make it the very best one you can. MERRY CHRISTMAS AND AN EXCITING NEW YEAR TO ALL OF YOU! In love and peace, Carol Elaine Deys PARA-DEYS ACRES


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