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An Old Christmas celebration

The day of Epiphany will be celebrated tomorrow, Jan. 6. This day is also known as Twelfth Day or Old Christmas. The word “epiphany” means “to reveal,” “to shine” or “to show,” or “to enlighten.” It is celebrated as the day the Wise Men from the East arrived in Bethlehem to a house (not a cattle cave or manger). They came to worship Jesus, the newborn King of the Jews. Their arrival heralds the fact that Jesus came for all nations, all races, all people, all colors. The mission of Christ was not limited to only a few, but to all people.

Old Christmas is still celebrated in Rodanthe. In January, on the closest Saturday to Epiphany, the citizens of Rodanthe carry on their celebration of “Old Christmas” which they have made a tradition for well more than a hundred years. It is certainly a local celebration, but out of town guests and mainlanders are always welcome.

The residents actually carry on a tradition that started in 1752 by English settlers. Every year, the celebration is held at the Rodanthe Town Center on Saturday afternoon. The celebration is kicked off with an oyster roast. Later in the evening, children and adults enjoy an appearance of “Old Buck,” a mystical wild bull that had been a terror to the townspeople until a hunter put him down. On Old Christmas, “Old Buck” appears in a bull’s costume and parades through the town, alive for the traditional celebration of Old Christmas (sounds like a fun place to go!).

Recycling Christmas boxes, bows, ribbons. You can enjoy saving money all through the year when you unfold gift boxes and store them to use for birthdays, showers, parties, and other occasions. Place bows, ribbons, in a large box to use next Christmas. When boxes are folded down, they require very little space.

Will we have a lot of snow in January? We are now into winter’s third week; could we be on the threshold of some serious snow? January can bring many varities of weather, including a warm day or two for good measure. We don’t have many ground freezes during the month. That may determine how much of the snow wee do get actually hangs around. One sure think is the garden plot can use several January snowflakes.

A change from red and green to pink, red, and white. Most stores and businesses are changing color schemes as they transition from Christmas to Valentine’s Day. The pink, white, and red brightens the cold days as the new year begins, and takes our mind off the after Christmas “blahs.”

Making our the seed order from 2020 seed catalogs. As the New Year begins, it’s time to look through the seed catalogs to check out new vegetable choices are for the 2020 garden season. Just because something is new is not a sign that it is better. When ordering from seed catalogs, always remember to order only those seeds you cannot find locally, and also remember you have to pay shipping and handling fees. Another important fact is that many packets have only 30 seeds or less in them.

Keeping birdbaths and feeders refilled. The birds are very much active in winter and even in snow and ice. Keep water in birdbaths and when temperatures drop below freezing, and ice forms in birdbaths, empty the ice when temperature gets above freezing and refill with fresh water. Replenish bird feeders each day.

Checking out they Christmas cactus. As we begin the new year, check the cactus wintering over in the living room and remove all spent flowers. Feed with a drink of Miracle Gro plant food (liquid). Water the cactus every ten days. If you received a cactus as a Christmas gift, go ahead and transplant it to a larger container filled with cactus medium.

Garden shops and hardwares preparing for 2020 garden season. It may be early in the new year, but seeds for the 2020 season are already being displayed at hardwares, garden shops, Lowes had Home Depot. You can purchase seeds now and they will be ready to plant in 2020 garden. We always buy seed early and place in a box with a lid on it. Always make sure the seeds your purchase are dated for 2020 growing season. Seed left over from last season should still be good if they are in an air-tight package. Test a few seeds in a pot of seed planting medium to be sure.

A winter bit of good news weather lore. A bit of winter weather lore that contains some good news. This lore says that when oak leaves bend with snow during January, good crops can be expected in summer. If snow bends the limbs of the mighty oaks, this must be heavy, wet snow.

The green of winter garden is beautiful thing. Anything that is green in winter highlights hidden beauty. Whether it is a short-leaf pine, a red-heart cedar an azalea bush or honeysuckle vine, and most of all something green in the winter garden plot. Siberian Kale, mustard greens, turnips and broccoli. When snow falls on a background of green in any shape of fashion, it highlights the snow and brightens the winter season.

Almanac for JJanuary. New Year’s Day occurred on Wednesday. The moon reached its first quarter on Thursday, Jan. 2. The full moon of January will occur on Friday, Jan. 10. It will be named Full Wolf Moon. The moon reaches its last quarter on Thursday, Jan. 17. Martin Luther King’s birthday is celebrated Jan. 20. The moon will be new on Friday, Jan. 24.

Hoe hoe hoedown

“For better or for worse?” The pastor encountered a woman whom he had married a few years before. He asked the woman, “Does your husband live up to the promises he made during your courtship days?”

“He sure does,” the woman snapped, “In those days he kept saying, ‘I’m not good enough for you, and he’s been proving it ever since!”

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Fun: The worst part of doing nothing is you never have a day off!

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Ray Baird

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