Brownstown-Sefton News

Critters Wanting & Needing Sunshine
We have had several inquiries about the critters’ welfare during the wet and chilly weather. The late, lovely RoseyLee Duck (who Bill always referred to as Miss America) did not mind our wet and muddy yard, but Lady, the mini-horse and Mother Madricka and Baby Bucky (donkeys) are pretty much staying in their dry, straw-strewn barn.
They come out for carrot treats and a drink of water; otherwise, they are trying to keep their little hooves dry. Bill closes their doors and windows at night during this cold weather and he is keeping plenty of clean dry, straw in for their bedding, thanks to Josh’s faithful delivery of the straw, along with the hay.
Katie, Bill’s black lab/blue heeler mix, also has straw bedding in her igloo dog house, but her place in our “people house” is being prepared for the arctic freeze predicted.  
Josie, the little 15-year-old “puppy,” has her own new, cozy bed by the Christmas tree, which I bought not knowing if she would even get in it.
Surprisingly, as soon as we put it down on the floor, Josie climbed right in it, as if she knew it was hers. She  now spends most of her waking hours in it, unless she is sitting  by me or by Bill at the table.
However, she keeps at least one ear up to hear what is going on. It is placed where she can see into the kitchen and see both hallways and both doors.
Callie, the kitty, has favorite places in each room. In the living room, she likes to rest on the chair at my computer and under the rocking chair, at Bill’s feet or on my lap. She just got in Josie’s new bed once and  stayed for a while , then casually got out and walked away. We felt she just did that to show she could.
In her room, she likes the recliner chair, where she can see out the window, or a favorite spot under the desk.
Betsy Longhorn and her longhorn family are outside critters. When we rented them a pasture with a large shed, they didn’t go in it, no matter the weather. They stayed out in the rain and snow. Neighbor Scott’s longhorns do the same.
The longhorns do like to lie on the hay that is down, and ours go to the corner of the pasture, where there is a windbreak from the trees, but they would seldom be seen in the shed for shelter, even in the roughest weather.
And, in the chicken coop, Blackie and Rhonda (hens) probably do not like the cold weather, but they get a treat of Rural King’s dried grub worms from time to time. They really like them. No eggs for some time – it’s too cold.
We, the human inhabitants, and the critters, are all looking forward to spring, which is really just around the corner. We are into January, February is a short month and we often have warm, spring-like days in March.
Food Pantry Items for January
One can of chicken or one can of chicken and dumplings and one box stuffing mix. Anything will be appreciated.
Coming Events
• Sefton HCE Unit meeting is Jan. 8 at 1 p.m. at the Golden Years Club building. Hostesses will be Sharon Wilhelm and Lora Foutch. Elizabeth Kasten will present the lessons, “Those Ol’ Bags” and “Bullying.” The roll call question is “What is your favorite soup?,” and the Food For Thought is “Good manners – The noise you don’t make when you’re eating soup.”
• Golden Years potluck meeting is the first meeting of 2015 – Jan. 13 at noon.
News is Sparse at This Time
Regular meetings and activities should resume soon as things get back to normal. Please remember to get your news and announcements to us by Monday afternoon in time for that week’s paper.
Son visits Homestead
Bill and Panzi Blackwell met son Jim Depew of Springfield for breakfast Sunday morning in Vandalia. Afterward, they visited at home, where Jim met the newest Homestead critters Madricka and baby Bucky (donkeys).
By Request – Introducing the Puleo’s Feline Friends
I have been asked on occasion, why I don’t write more about Callie, the kitty.
Recently, while in a store, I was asked by another customer to share some information about Wanda and Ken Puleo’s cats. Wanda responded and shared the following information as a way of introduction to the kitties. Hope our readers who are partial to kitties will enjoy this.
Meet “Sam,” a large yellow cat who has two sisters, “Goldfinger” and “Thunderball,” who are tabbies, and “Harry.”
Wanda said, “Thunderball is the one who was in the barn when the tornado tore the roof off almost two years ago. We didn’t see hide nor hair of Thunderball for exactly two weeks to the day of the tornado. We didn’t know if she had been killed, blown away or was hiding.”
“Harry came walking up our driveway in September 2013,” Wanda said, “about 2 months old, a solid yellow kitten, about two months old, looking for a home. He wanted to be buddies with Sam (I guess because they were the same color). Sam wasn’t overly interested in him, but would tolerate him.”
“Then, about two months after that,” she said, “here came another kitten, yellow and mostly white, walking up the driveway, looking for a home. “
 “I might mention that Ken was sitting on the back deck when these two came around, and he assured them that they would be well taken care of,  if they stayed here.
“We then had the task of naming the newest kitten,” Wanda said. “Ken had named the first one Harry, after my dad, but we already had a cat named Sam, after his dad. We put on our thinking caps and decided “Luigi” would be appropriate.” They had thought of the old radio show, “Life with Luigi” and had both listened to it “when we were youngsters,” she said.
“Harry is another in- or- out cat, but prefers to be in at night, so he can escort me to bed,” Wanda said. “We stay up pretty late, usually, and when he gets sleepy, he comes over and sits on my lap, wanting attention, or watches me carefully, to see when I start upstairs.
“No matter how quiet I am, I won’t even make it halfway upstairs and he flies past me and sits at the door, waiting for it to open so he can jump on the bed. By the time Ken makes it upstairs, I am in bed with Harry nestled close beside me.
“Once Ken is ready for bed, he says, ‘Harry Berry.’ Harry tries to get closer, he nibbles on my ear and has his paws on both sides of my neck, massaging my carotid arteries,” Wanda said. “But its too late – Ken reaches out, picks him up and gently takes him to the door and tells him good night.”
“Goldfinger is an in and out cat. When she is in, if I sit down in the recliner, it is a race between her and Harry to see who can get closer to my neck, starting in my lap and creeping upward,” Wanda said. “Goldfinger has an interest in the computer, and either insists on hanging over my shoulder or else on the desk in front of the computer screen. She hides behind the recliner to avoid being put outside.”
Next week – We will learn of the three bobtail cats that Wanda had when she and Ken married, and also of Missy and Gigi, two long-haired calico cats.
Brownstown United Methodist Church
Bradley Schwarm and Hubert Williams served as ushers, and Bette Stolte, pianist, played the prelude as the congregation of the United Methodist Church gathered for Sunday morning worship services .
Pastor Don Thomas greeted all, recognized the birthdays and anniversaries, shared the prayer list and led in prayer. Thomas delivered the morning message, followed by Communion, given by Thomas, assisted by Schwarm.
Pam Orr led the children’s worship and Flo Allen led the adult class.
• The youth will go bowling on Saturday at 5 p.m. at Vandalia Bowl, and to the Vandalia Pizza Hut afterward.
• Jan. 22 at 2 p.m.-United Methodist Women  will meet and observe call to prayer and self-denial.
Brownstown First Christian Church
The congregation of First Christian Church was greeted by Terry and Susan Smith, and led in songs of praise by Kevin Bonifacious and Lynn Boggs, accompanied by Susan Smith on the piano.
Brent Keyes led the Communion meditation. Karen Underwood contributed special music, followed by the morning message, delivered by Bonifacious.
Many were absent due to colds and the flu.
• Extreme Zone meets on Tuesdays from 3:30-5:00 p.m. Extreme Zone is an afternoon program for kindergarten through grade six. The children are picked up at school for recreation, snacks, singing and a Bible lesson. There has been 30-40 children attending this year.
• Regular evening services will resume on Sunday, Jan. The new study is entitled, “One Another – Building Blocks for Good Relationships.”
• Leadership Approved – Matthew Smith-deacon; Charlie Watson and Duane Willms-elders.

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