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When I was a child, my mother told me Santa comes after Thanksgiving. While she wasn’t lying to my face, I took “after Thanksgiving” quite literally. I woke up early the day after Thanksgiving while everyone was still sleeping off gorging themselves. The last thing you want to wake up to is a child crying. Especially a child the day after Thanksgiving who is crying because Santa didn’t come yet.

I’ve learned over time to not take things quite so literally, and to also take time to enjoy Thanksgiving weekend before the real holiday madness sets in.

In recent years, once the drowsiness from eating too much turkey wears off, I take part in one of my second favorite holiday tradition of Thanksgiving weekend. My mother decorates our home for Christmas. We always listen to Christmas music as she gets her extensive Santa collection out of the attic. Then we decorate my room.

At the end of the day on Black Friday, my home is a winter wonderland. The Santa figurines are on the mantle of the fireplace, my room is decorated, and the Christmas lights are on the tree outside. In that moment, it hits me — the most wonderful time of the year is here.

In a season that is so positively brimming with the big, busy, exciting things, it’s important to also take time and enjoy the little things. Here’s hoping that you and your family, this weekend and throughout the whole holiday season, could take some quality time to enjoy the little things.

Here’s what else is happening around town this week:

Christmas tree lighting

West Pittston’s annual Christmas tree lighting will be held Sunday, Dec. 2. A parade to the Christmas tree will begin at 5 p.m. on Erie Street and end at the Christmas tree, Wyoming and Delaware avenues, where cookies and hot chocolate will be provided. Wyoming Area’s marching band and cheerleaders will lead Christmas carols and, of course, Santa and Mrs. Claus will be in attendance.

Trinity Episcopal news

This month’s items being accepted as donations at Trinity Episcopal Church’s food pantry include Gerrity’s gift cards, cereal, other breakfast items including oatmeal, breakfast bars, pancake mix and syrup; crackers, canned meats, such as tuna and chicken; jelly, instant potatoes, or any other non-perishable food items.

Trinity’s pocket prayer shawls are back! These small, square, hand knit “shawls” are just the right size to tuck in a pocket or purse. Intended as a comforting reminder that we are always surrounded by God’s love, these pocket shawls are made available to Trinity parishioners free of charge. They are knitted with prayer, and prayers are said daily for those who receive them. Please take one for yourself and/or for family or friends who might be comforted by this small, tactile reminder of God’s love and care and the prayers of friends at Trinity. Feel free to take an extra so next time you learn someone is in need of prayer, you can share a shawl along with your promise to pray for them!

Corpus Christi news

Corpus Christi’s new ministry schedule, which will run from December 2018 through February 2019, can be picked up the weekend of Nov. 24-25. Contact information for the coordinators is as follows: altar servers, Donna Mason, mmason8587@aol.com or 570-587-3355; EMs, Teresa Crossin, tacross5@comcast.net or 570-357-3985; lectors, Rosalie Cullagh, rosan814@comcast.net or 570-430-7319.

This parish fundraiser, “Cabin Fever,” will offer two chances to win $500 on Feb. 14 and the chance to win $100 the following Sundays, Jan. 20 and 27 and Feb. 3 and 10. Donation is $25 for five tickets or $5 for one ticket. For additional tickets, call or stop by the rectory. This raffle is in place of the lottery fundraiser.

If you or someone you know will be needing help for Christmas, please email Joyce at jcecconi50@gmail.com or call the rectory 570-654-2753. The parish needs a contact name and phone number, as a member of Social Concerns will call you for Christmas gift ideas for your children and give you the pickup dates and times.

Religious education classes are continuing from 9 to 10:15 a.m. Sunday mornings. Students who attend Catholic schools are not required to attend religious education and confirmation prep classes in the parish. If your child is in second grade at a Catholic school and is a member of the parish, he/she is eligible to receive the sacrament of first reconciliation and first Eucharist in the parish. If your child is an eighth grade student in a Catholic school, he/she is eligible to receive confirmation in the parish. You must call the rectory to register your son or daughter to receive the sacraments.

Members and friends of the St. Clare Sewing Ministry are knitting and crocheting a variety of hats, scarfs, gloves and mittens. They will be given as Christmas gifts to the families who are on the parish’s Giving Tree. The group has a lot of yarn, so if you would like to help, just call Pat Jacobs at 570-954-7552 and she will make arrangements for you to pick up some yarn. The group will gladly accept any donations of the needed winter items; just leave them in the vestibules of the churches.

Library news

West Pittston Library will show the movie “A Wrinkle in Time” from 5:30 to 7:45 p.m. Thursday, Nov. 29. Come out and enjoy the last in the fall movie night series at the West Pittston Library.

  

Parks and recreation news

West Pittston Parks, Recreation and Beautification Board holds monthly meetings at 7 p.m. the first Wednesday of each month in the borough building. New members are welcome.

Recycling

Recycling containers located at the Public Works Building on Delaware Avenue are open to the public from 8 a.m. to noon Saturdays.

Curbside collection of recyclables is the first and third Thursday of each month. The Public Works Department asks that residents place their recyclables in front of their homes Wednesday evening prior to collection Thursday morning.

See you around town.

John Bubul writes about West Pittston every week. To include an item in his column, email jbubul@pittstonprogress.com or call 570-301-2187 by Monday.