Winter is trying to flex its muscle but autumn is not willing to give it up yet. This is when people get sick. Our bodies can’t quite keep up with the daily change. My eyes are on the weekend forecast more than anything else. I didn’t have quite enough covering to combat that strong southwest wind last Friday. We had a bumper crowd at the 5th Quarter meal and I’m thinking it was because of the chill in the air. Our main entrée was enchiladas, prepared by Marcia at the Stagecoach. As usual, our ladies of the community filled the table with all manner of delicious treats. I limited myself to one dessert. It was a delicious chocolate cake with coconut. Russ enjoyed Delores Smith’s chocolate pecan cake. I didn’t even bother to try for the banana pudding; the kids clean it out in a hurry. Obviously, there was a great mood of jubilation as once again our Coyotes head down the playoff trail. Another six weeks have gone by and the holiday season is upon us. This time of the year, more than any other time is extremely important to families. For those who can all get together; the time is good. For those who have soldiers or members who have gone on to be with the Lord; this is a particularly poignant and stressful period. I know my son Scott’s family is fortunate to have their dad for Christmas before he heads back into danger. Please support these families in any way you can. See if you can’t find a special hug for someone who has lost a loved one.Next week’s game was to be held in Comanche, but now on the toss of a coin, we are headed to Hico. Now I hate to be ugly, but that place has the worst parking in the world. For senior citizens it is extremely difficult. More often than not you end up parking in the ditch by the side of the road. It just doesn’t give you a good feeling about leaving your car and getting back in one piece. Since no one cares about the parking and walking issues for old people, I guess we’ll just go where they tell us to go. You can get a gorgeous piece of pie at the Koffee Kup.Sheriff Brown reminded me it was politicking time again. I received his post card in the mail. I haven’t seen an opponent in the mix yet. He didn’t say whether he was running unopposed. I guess all that will come out in good time. I was very sad when Mr. Fowler reported that only 5% of the voters voted on the constitutional changes last week. I’m trying to teach my students the importance of civic duty, especially when it comes to the responsibility of voting. That means 95 people have to do what a minority of five people passed. Those are not good odds in my book. I like our new deputy and his sidekick. The kids had a great time at our last meet and greet event. Like everything else, some people will say the Sheriff has done a good job, and others will argue that he hasn’t. The vote is yours; exercise your vote.I know I’ve said this before, but it bears repeating. I write this column because I was asked to do so. Since I don’t know everyone or their past, my page is usually a blank slate. Every Sunday I sit before the computer and think back over the news of the week. Sometimes a comment strikes me as particularly good or sometimes bad. I seldom use names, unless someone expressly requests their name to be mentioned. If at any time one of the local ladies or gents would like to write this column, it will not hurt my feelings. If I sound like I’m whining, perhaps I am. It’s a shame that with all the positive comments I get about this column and the views I express; it only takes one ugly anonymous letter to put my back up. I guess since I put my name on this column every week, I expect other adults to put their name on communications that they think are important enough to mail. Perhaps the writer of that ugly little tirade was having a bad week, and something I wrote just struck them wrong. Sometimes you have to take a deep breath and move on; my students seem to be able to do it very easily. Actually, I have wonderful students who are working their little hearts out studying for UIL and keeping up with their daily lessons. If we had more students we would probably take first place in competition, but we always end up second or third because of our lack of contestants. Richland is not just about athletes, it’s about outstanding student athletes. As Mr. Fowler would say, we are academically strong as well as athletically talented. I just want all you folks out there to know, Buckholtz was out coached from the second play of the game. We have good athletes, but we have a super bunch of coaches and teachers. Our teams win.Something else special happened Friday night at the game. My 5th Graders and one fourth grader sang the Star Spangled Banner without missing a beat. As a tribute to our veterans, they also recited the Declaration of Independence. There is nothing more inspiring than listening to the voices of the future standing strong in patriotic tradition. The referees asked to have their picture taken with the students. I’m very proud of my ever so smart students. Way to go Kenneth, Levi, Berkeley, Jacey, Kamree, Santiago, Ashlin, Nathan, Cameron, Jared and Eli. You’re the greatest!We have several families grieving this week. Dale Harlow went to be with the Lord as did Ed Smith’s Dad. I’m not sure of the Smith family arrangements, but Mr. Harlow will be in Early. We have many on the prayer list that need our prayers and continued support. George Hill is headed for another surgery in Temple. June McPherson has had a setback on her leukemia. Harold and Grace Hardeman require prayer and our own Ms. Nell is carrying a heavy load with Dale Butler being so sick. Paul Gibson believes he is healed and so we will stand in belief with him. There are many more on our prayer list, as well as on the prayer lists of our other two churches. Please lift up a prayer for all the sick in our community. Baby Cheyenne has not put in an appearance. It seems he/she prefers the comfort of the womb. We hope by the time this issue comes out that a new life will be giving delight to young parents and happy grandparents.Please pray for our country, our legislators, our President and our precious troops and their families. Thank you veterans past, present and future for the sacrifices you and your families have made for our freedoms. Please God, continue to bless America.