The Mornin' Mail is published every weekday except major holidays
Monday, December 16, 2002 Volume XI, Number 127

did ya know?

Did Ya Know?. . .Golden Reflections will have a Christmas Party from 5-7 p.m. on Friday, Dec. 20th in the McCune-Brooks hospital cafeteria. There will be music, entertainment and snacks.

Did Ya Know?. . .Auditions for Stone’s Throw Dinner Theatre’s next production, "Sylvia" by A. R. Gurney will be on Sunday, Dec. 22nd at 7:30 p.m. at the theatre, 796 South Stone Lane, Carthage. Call 417-358-9665 or 417-358-7268 for more information.

Did Ya Know?. . .The Wednesday morning storytime at the Carthage Public Library will have a familiar face on Wed., Dec. 18th. Chuck Surface will be there to participate and be a "book Santa."

today's laugh

Little Willie, with a rock,
Beaned the cuckoo in the clock.
Father said: "Why don’t it tick?"
Willie said: "The bird is sick."

A man in a movie theater notices what looks like a bear sitting next to him.
"Are you a bear?"
"What are you doing at the movies?"
"Well, I liked the book."

Nobody who can read is ever successful at cleaning out the attic.


A Chronological Record of Events as they have Transpired in the City and County since our last Issue.


Mrs. F. B. Hatch Entertained Another Gathering of Friends Yesterday Afternoon.

Mrs. F. B. Hatch entertained another gathering of lady friends yesterday afternoon at a thimble party. The feature of the afternoon was a guessing contest in which Mrs. Prather and Mrs. Knowles tied for the first and Mrs. Morgan and Mrs. Dryden tied for the second prize.

These ties were decided by drawing straws and in the first Mrs. Prather was the lucky one and in the second Mrs. Morgan won. Both prizes were pretty books. This, as well as the first entertainment was given in honor of Mrs. Hatch’s sister, Mrs. Peacher of Jasper.

The old cottage of Bud Fields just south of the hotel at Lakeside, has been torn out and Jack Mehan is building a big square house there for his own occupation.

  Today's Feature

Workshop to be held in Carthage.

"Money Action Plan" Teaches Basic Financial Skills

A training workshop focusing on the basic practices and skills important to sound family financial management is being offered this winter. The course in Carthage will be 12:30 p.m. - 4:30 p.m., Jan. 15 and 8:30 a.m. to 12:30 p.m., Jan. 16.

The cost is $50 per person, which covers course expenses and materials.

Concern over the financial well-being of Missouri families led to the development of this new curriculum called Money Action Plan.

"This purpose of the Money Action Plan curriculum is to assist social service agency personnel and other helping professionals who regularly work with low-income households or people with limited experience in dealing with financial matters," said Janet LaFon, consumer and family economics specialist, University of Missouri Outreach and Extension.

The "Money Action Plan" workshops cover seven important topics: an introduction to money management, developing a spending plan, record keeping, credit, communication within the family about money, insurance, and becoming an informed consumer.

"Each section includes basic background information as well as learning activities. There are sections on financial counseling, evaluation instruments and sample teaching guides for use with clients. The participants will leave prepared to use an extensive curriculum that can benefit themselves as well as the work they do," said LaFon.

For more information, or to register for the program, contact Kim Allen in Bolivar at (417) 326-4916 or Janet LaFon in Carthage at (417) 358-2158.

Just Jake Talkin'


I’m a little amazed ever year ta see the effort volunteered by the local police officers in puttin’ on the Children’s Benefit Christmas party. I used ta get overwhelmed tryin’ to cope with a children’s birthday party.

As I’m sure the Department would be quick ta point out, the efforts of citizens supportin’ the financial side of the gatherin’ is also quite a statement as to the community’s character.

From those I’ve talked to, bein’ involved in the effort is an important past of their Christmas celebration. All the plannin’ and hours of preparation is rewarded by the appreciation of the kids and their parents.

This is some fact, but mostly,

Just Jake Talkin’.



Carthage Printing

Weekly Column


By Samantha Mazzotta

Q: Last year, our Christmas tree wasn’t that great. We found out it was too big after purchasing it, and when we cut it to fit, the top looked just awful. Plus, we didn’t have enough lights to really cover the thing nicely! Is there a better way to buy a tree? — Dana S., Boise

A: Sometimes, our best-laid plans get shredded, especially when it comes to picking Christmas trees. I remember several Christmases (in a row, no less!) where my stepfather carefully measured the height of the living room from floor to ceiling, recorded the figure faithfully and piled the family into the car to go and buy a tree. Invariably, that slip of paper with the measurement on it got lost along the way, and, hampered by five excited kids pointing at the biggest and fullest trees on the lot, my stepfather would forget the measurement he had memorized. The result was the same: a beautiful tree that was too tall for the living room. In fact, one tree was too wide for the front door!

How did we resolve the too-tall-tree dilemma? With a chainsaw and hedge trimmers, of course. Measurements were retaken and marked on the tree by a string or ribbon tied around the trunk, and the top of the tree was cut off just above the ribbon. My older brothers went to work with the hedge-trimmers, clipping away just the edges of the pine fronds around the tree to give it a more even, conical shape. They also removed three or four larger fronds near the bottom of the tree (where some branches overlapped) and attached those with twist-ties to the topmost branches, hiding the flattened treetop. This worked fairly well, and the addition of a large star or angel drew viewers’ attention away from the less-than-perfect shape.

If you don’t have a pack of kids nattering away at your concentration (or even if you do), measure the height — floor to ceiling — of the area you want to put the tree in. Then, subtract one foot from that measurement to allow for placement of a treetop ornament. Measure the width of the door through which you’ll carry the tree, as well.

The amount of lights on a tree is also an issue. You’ll need one 3-foot string of Christmas lights for each vertical foot of tree, on average. But what if you waited too long and can’t buy additional lights? If you haven’t purchased a tree yet, lay out the light strings and measure the total length in feet. Divide that total by three, and you’ll have the maximum height that the tree should be to fit them all.


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