Living as we do in a climate with very definite seasons, we experience over and over the beauty of a new season as well as the whole range of activities that go with it. Of course, some things remain the same. What ever the season, chickens continue to lay eggs, the cows need to be milked, and we still need to cook and do laundry.
One type of work that increases in winter is shoe repair. Our cobbler, Fr. Louis Labrecque, is in dire need of black nylon sewing thread, size 40 metric, 300 meters. He would welcome some shoe goop as well.
The dark days of winter mean an increased need for portable light. We need flashlights and flashlight bulbs and batteries in all sizes—D, C, AA, AAA, and especially 9-volt. It would also be very helpful to have a headlamp for hands-free work in the dark.
Our farmers are asking for large men’s winter boots with felt liners (sizes 10-14) and heavy-duty rain suits.
The gift shop staff are grateful for the gift catalogues you sent. These are a big help in pricing the donated items. And if you’re wondering what kinds of things you might have around the house that are especially good sellers these days, here are a few ideas: old smoking pipes (we can clean and refurbish them), music boxes, and old children’s dolls.
Winter is cold and flu season, and our nurses are asking for cold medicines, vitamin C, iron, and multivitamins.
The kitchen people, too, play their part in providing what we need during these months of increased sickness. They want to increase their supply of thermoses for bringing hot soup and drinks to the sick. They are also asking for the glass inserts that go in the thermoses, especially the tall size with the regular mouth, but they can use all sizes.
A heart-felt thank you to all who sent Scotch tape. Our office needs are simple this month: printer paper (either blank or good-on-one-side), computer paper, 2010 calendars (both wall and pocket) and agendas.
Can you help us with these household needs? Men’s and women’s handkerchiefs, spray starch, dust pans, and rubber gloves (medium and large).
You probably don’t expect a request for garden supplies in January, but our gardeners need to be ready when spring comes. They are asking for bone meal, blood meal, and whiffle balls or any apple-size plastic balls. Whiffle balls, painted red and covered with a sticky substance, are their weapon against the insect larvae that attack our fledgling apple trees.
When you are ready to dispose of your 2009 religious Christmas cards, both new and used, would you please keep us in mind? We get lots of secular cards, but religious ones are scarce. (We make cards for our individual use out of used ones.)
Our sacristan is asking for beeswax acolyte processional candles. These are 1 1/8 inches in diameter and 15-16 inches tall. Perhaps your parish has switched to a different type and could spare a few of these old-fashioned ones.
Last of all, here are some odds and ends of requests that have come to our attention: old room thermostats, a 12-kg. digital scale for weighing parcels, and some JT-21 staples for our staple guns.
Morning by morning, as we plunge into each day’s hidden life, let us remember that our lives have meaning because Eternity has entered history as a newborn Child. May the peace he came to bring uphold and console you.
In Our Lady of Combermere,
Susanne Stubbs and Mark Schlingerman (January 2010)
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