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Days are colder, nights are darker and fall is finally upon us! While the temperatures do warm up during the day, I did find that I dug out my gloves this week, especially for early morning sojourns out of my warm and comfortable home. For those of you using woodstoves for heat, please be careful! While the wood does provide a semi-affordable way to heat, the ashes and sparks it produces can be dangerous. Speaking of affordable, what about those gas prices? The word I am hearing is prices may go over $4 per gallon. All one can say to that is OUCH! Home heating oil will also be costly this winter. It was good to have a visit with Mike Lagree this past week in the emergency room at CVPH Medical Center. My roommate had to make a trip there and, as usual, we were more than pleased with the staff and the service. Once again folks, how lucky we are to have such a class hospital in our region. Stan Ransom is back as head of the City of Plattsburgh library. Ransom, since his retirement as director of CEF Library System, has been very active in the community and was named Irishman of the Year in 1998. He is also known as the "Connecticut Peddler." The newspaper this week stated a little extra weight isnt necessarily a bad thing. Now to me, folks, that is good news! Congratulations to the Chazy Boys and Girls Soccer teams as they both head to the Final Four this coming weekend. Their program is one of class and longevity and we wish them the best as they represent Section VII at the state level. The 15th annual charity auction will be held in the old MAI/Seton gymnasium this Saturday, Nov. 17, at 11 a.m. This event is sponsored by Eye Care for the Adirondacks and will benefit the Interfaith Food Shelf. Holiday decorations, crafts, gift certificates and donations of services from local businesses will be available. Also on Nov. 17, there will be a holiday craft fair at Veterans of Foreign Wars Post 309 in Peru from 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. Vendor tables are available for $15 and $20. Call 643-2309 for information. Santa Claus arrives at Champlain Centre in Plattsburgh this Saturday as well. At 11 a.m., he will walk through the mall and visit with guests at the food court. He is officially in residence from that day until Christmas Eve. Can the season be here already? Festival of Trees will be held at Champlain Centre from Sunday, Nov. 18, through the Nov. 24. This event is presented by the Advocacy and Resource Center. Individuals, businesses and civic groups will decorate trees with chosen themes and they will be showcased through the 24th. All are available by Chinese auction with the winning tickets drawn the last day. There is a $5 donation per ticket or six are available for $20. Call Brenda Garner at 563-0930, ext. 178, for further information. One more time, the Nutcracker will be presented at the Hartman Theater on the PSU campus Friday, Nov. 23, and Saturday, Nov. 24 at 2 p.m. and 7:30 p.m. and on Sunday, Nov. 25, at 2 p.m. Reserved seats are $20 for adults and $15 for seniors and children. Reservations, which are highly recommended, may be made by calling 563-1604. Stars on Ice will present one show Nov. 24 at 8 p.m. at the Olympic Rink in Lake Placid. Call 523-3330 for reservations and information. As I write this we are 10 days from departure to our daughters for Thanksgiving and then on to our Florida home. This time of year brings mixed emotions for me; I love my home here with my gorgeous view of my lake; I love the crisp fall air and living in a small town. However, I also do not love the snow anymore, so look forward to the warmer weather that Florida brings. So far, my roommate and I are coping with the packing detail quite well, but who knows how long that will last? Ill let you know next week, when it is really crunch time! Have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday, and always remember each day is Gods gift to you. Make it blossom and grow into a thing of beauty.

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