Volume XII, Issue 18: November 9, 2012



Thursday,  November 15th from 5 to 8 pm

Arcata Community Center

Our Exchange Student from Thailand, Fa Sillapajarn, got a taste of American artistic culture when she recently attended “Arts Alive!” in Eureka. Her verdict? “I like it!” She will be exposed to American “Foodie” culture at this week’s Taste of the Holidays.

We received word that Arcata House, a local nonprofit that helps locals with transitional housing, has merged with the Humboldt All-Faith Partnership to form the Arcata House Partnership. The organization will continue to operate emergency, transitional, and permanent supportive housing for the homeless. Their First Annual Drive-By Drop Off event will be held this Saturday, November 17th, so take your gently-used home furnishings and the like to the Arcata United Methodist Church at 1761 11th Street between 1 and 4 pm. If you would like to donate but can’t make the event, or if you would like more information, please call 822-4528.

Don’t forget the following dates:

  • Saturday, November 24th – Fifth Friday Fellowship at the HSU Jacks Basketball Game
  • Thursday, December 6th – Foster Youth Holiday Dinner
  • Thursday, December 6th through Saturday, December 8th – The Jerry Paul Classic Arcata Invitational Basketball Tournament (AIBT)

“What is up?” That was the question posed by Recognition Meister Bob Johnson last Friday. He had some inside info on Jessica McKnight and Romi Hitchcock Tinseth. Both were in Texas at the beginning of the month to show their support for Airman Sky Tinseth on her graduation from Basic Training. Romi said that her daughter is now headed for Biloxi, Mississippi, where she will be one of only 17 airmen to attend tech school, and only two of those are women! Congratulations and best wishes, Sky!

Bob then asked about our plans for Thanksgiving:

  • Sir Charles Giannini will be traveling for the holiday. He plans to do some hunting with his son and his grandkids in the remote areas of Eastern Oregon.
  • Harry Johnson will be in Mt. Shasta, although he wasn’t sure whether skiing was in the forecast. Bob asked if he had been in Mexico recently, volunteering at the dental clinic. Harry said that he is planning to go down in a few weeks. 
  • St. Bernard’s Football Coach Jason White said that he doesn’t have any plans yet. “I’m hoping that we will be practicing.” That was a reference to his team’s progress in the North Coast Section Playoffs. His guys face the Ferndale Wildcats this Friday. Good luck, Crusaders!
  • Angelo Baciagaluppi said that he will probably dedicate part of the holiday to drywall. He is sure that the family will be in town, and since his wife doesn’t enjoy cooking as much as he does, he will be in the kitchen on the big day.
  • Patty Stocum and her husband, Visiting Rotarian Jon (from the Old Town Eureka Rotary) said that their annual tradition is to spend Thanksgiving at their property in Hyampom, in Trinity County. They have invited our former Exchange Student Marianna Sanchez to join them. Patty said that they built a barbeque outside this year, and that’s where the cooking action is expected to take place.
  • Maggie Kraft will be celebrating her sister’s birthday next week, and then she plans a return to Botswana for a few weeks. She will be back for New Year’s Day, but she said that while she is there, “I’m hoping to see a well.”

Our very own Barbara Browning was the featured speaker last Friday, and she gave us some great ideas for making the holiday season more relaxed and more meaningful. Here are her thoughts:

  1. Examine your existing traditions. Ask yourself what you enjoy most about the holidays, and what you like least. Sometimes, traditions persist because we assume that they are important to another member of our family or social group. An open discussion with your loved ones may lead you to discard unwanted customs. “Remember,” Barbara said, “Less can be more.”
  2. Enjoy meaningful traditions. With meaningless traditions out of the way, you can focus on the ones that do provide meaning to you.
  3. Engage your kids. Set realistic expectations for the holidays, including activities and gifts. Barbara said that one of the traditions that she and husband Ron Sharp keep is having Christmas breakfast with the grandchildren. 
  4. Make something. There is something very personal about a handmade gift. Barbara shared her recipe for cinnamon candied almonds (it’s reproduced at the bottom of the page). She also shared samples, which were delicious!
  5. Choose meaningful activities. This leaves “the best of yourself for the people and activities that mean the most to you”.

If you answer these questions, you can decide which traditions to keep and which to let go of:

  • Do I love this?
  • Do I honestly have time for it?
  • What is the worst thing that will happen if I say no?

As Barbara says … “Relax and enjoy the season!”

Cinnamon Candied Almonds
3 1/4 cups whole almonds
1 cup sugar
3 tablespoons cinnamon
1 egg white
1 1/2 teaspoons vanilla
1/4 teaspoon salt

Preheat oven to 300 degrees.

  • Line a baking sheet with foil and lightly spray with vegetable oil.
  • In a large bowl, combine sugar and cinnamon.
  • In another large bowl, beat egg white until slightly frothy. Stir in vanilla and salt.
  • Add almonds to egg mixture and toss to coat. Then pour almonds into cinnamon mixture and toss to coat.
  • Spread sugar coated almonds on lined baking sheet and bake 25 minutes. Stir after 10 minutes.
  • Let cool and remove from pan with slotted spoon.