What’s Cooking?

Tonight’s WPCA-FM broadcast of my stories repeated a tale from November, I’ll Cook For You. It’s one of my favorite stories and when read aloud to a group produced an audible “Whew!” as I finished. The cook in question is a young woman who, in the Korean era 1950’s, worked as a personal chef for an old time motion picture couple but also bought and delivered groceries for an elderly woman who remembered and cherished her memories of the romantic film duo. Is all as it seems? Therein lies the tale, inside of which are the lives of some of our rich and famous. The story is one of my longest stories; someone reading it during a lunch break would have to move things along. You’ll find I’ll Cook For You in The First Gathering of The Break Time Stories and in the ebook Yet More Break Time Stories.

Probable coming readings include the Osceola Senior Citizens Club on Wednesday, February 7th and a date to be arranged at the Amery Area Public Library. This blog site will give you the details, so check in a few days from now.

Christmas has come and gone, as has New Years. To finish off 2023, last week’s Gospel told of Joseph, Mary and baby Jesus coming to the Temple for both Mary’s purification ceremony and the baby’s circumcision. A prophet, Anna, and a devout regular in the Temple, Simeon, both attest to the Messiaship of Jesus. I couldn’t resist following the Gospel with Michael Card’s song about Simeon. I try not to inflict my guitar and voice in song on helpless congregations, but this fit so well that I couldn’t resist. My old Mexican guitar (made by an old Mexican) and I got through the song quite well–or at least everyone was polite. Last Sunday, the last day of 2023, saw me at Wolf Creek and Turtle Lake’s Parkview United Methodist Churches. Next week I’m guest preaching in Taylors Falls at the historic United Methodist Church on the hill.

Wolf Creek’s Christmas Eve candlelight service was cozy and family-friendly nice. It was probably the last Christmas service I’ll ever do. The “Wolf Creek Pack”, as they dub themselves, found a cap as a present for me. The cap says, “Pastor Warning: anything you do or say may be used in a sermon.” I’ll wear it when Marina, a retired mental health counselor, wears the sweatshirt I got her: “Keep talking; I’m diagnosing you.”

We have snow at last. It hit the night before New Years Eve and was pretty icy before a small amount of snow landed atop the ice. It was slow going driving to church Sunday morning.  I’d managed to cut and split a good deal of the large elm we had taken down, so now only huge cuts remain. They are large enough so I’ll have to figure out some sort of ramp to get them onto the splitter. If that doesn’t work, then I anticipate burying many wedges in those large elm logs. Elm has fibers that are laced together and all of them must be severed in order to split or separate the pieces.

Where are my kids tonight? One is in Georgia (the EurAsian Georgia, not our State) where he’s played a festival; another is in Upper Michigan for skiing; another is on Roatan, Honduras enjoying the beach; and the other two are within an hour of me and keeping the snow shovels close at hand.