CASA of Central LA welcomes their two newest Advocates for Sabine Parish Alexis LeJeune and Sarah Nash. They had the privilege of being sworn-in by Judge Verity Gentry on December 9th.
Christmas 2022 was going to be an epic one for the books. It was going to be the first time we forwent the traditional Christmas presents in exchange for a trip filled with precious memories to last a lifetime. My youngest daughter was not so thrilled. She always enjoyed a “Christmas Haul”. Tons of gifts wrapped in beautiful packaging under a perfectly lit tree.
Her Christmas Cup should always be overflowing with gifts.
This year I wanted to trade all of it for airline tickets to see my oldest daughter in Idaho. I didn’t want a repeat of last year‘s Christmas without having both daughters under one roof. In reality, I know that life is ever changing and not all holidays will look the same. Especially while your children are growing up and finding their own way in the world.
My Christmas Cup is a little selfish too, it should always be filled to the brim with my children, on Christmas Day in matching pajama and tons of laughs and memories.
We started planning in October by purchasing the airline tickets and a meticulously chosen route to ensure a holiday trip to remember. We originally planned to fly to Idaho then take a lovely drive to Banff, Canada. Passports, tickets, rental vehicle and rooms were all secured. Nothing to do except wait for Christmas Eve so we could fly out.
Unless you have been hiding under a large, quiet rock, then you are aware of the Polar Vortex that hit the entire country and wrecked travel plans for millions of people. This made my Christmas Cup a little less full. I was beginning to worry.
I had been watching my United Airline app like a hawk. I checked it daily until our trip and everything was reported as “On time No Delay”. I’m the midst of watching the app, I was also stalking the Montana roads update on their website. Before we left our house it was deemed that Canada wouldn’t happen due to blizzard like conditions and road closures. The rooms were cancelled.
My Christmas Cup was draining little by little.
As Christmas Eve approached we made our way to the airport only to sit there through nine grueling delays. As strange as it may sound there was some comfort found in the camaraderie of all the other travelers. While we were all exhausted, drained, sad, and hopeless; we still felt joy when someone finally got to board a plane or when someone’s name was called who had been on standby.
We ended up missing a whole day of travel and had to spend the night in a town that was still an hour away from our destination.
My Christmas Cup was virtually empty and almost bone dry.
Even being a Christ follower who is full of faith, love and constant joy, it is so easy to be blindsided by our cup being empty. Several times during our travels I had to literally stop and remind myself that I am saved, sanctified and Jesus would not want me acting in a way that would land me on the evening news.
All through the holiday season our cups are filled and emptied with all of the ups and downs that life throws our way. I have learned through my own comedy of errors that my cup drains quickly when I am not putting Jesus first. It drains dry when I am not saturating myself with his word and reminders of why we even celebrate Christmas at all.
“Since, then, you have been raised with Christ, set your hearts on things above, where Christ is, seated at the right hand of God. Set your minds things above, not on earthly things.” – Colossians 3:1-2
#38 Converse 10-10 33.52
North Sabine Parish Fire Department will be holding an open house in honor of their new fire station on Jan. 3, at 3:00pm. Tours will be given and refreshments are provided; located at 16525 Hwy 171, Zwolle, LA 71486.
Today, I’m venturing away from my fishing stories by wrapping up 2022 taking a hard look at where we are as a country. In so many ways 2022 was a great year, as we finally returned to a sense of normalcy. It seems like years ago that we were under mask mandates and trying to figure out the facts and fiction of Covid-19. It truly rocked our world like nothing ever has in my lifetime. We’re still trying to make sense of what this disease brings with it and the lasting effects it could have for generations.
But for now, I am going in a different direction as I reveal my observations on the state of our Union.
First, politics has come to the forefront now that Trump is no longer in office but has declared he’s running for office again in 2024, halfway through the Biden years. Never can I remember, in my 61 years of living in this great country, the political and moral division that exists today.
The 1960’s might be the closest era we’ve seen similar to now. Who’s responsible for this? EVERYONE!!! No one party can excuse themselves from this plain and simple fact that we are a nation divided. Republicans and Democrats and their leadership from within are all guilty of fueling the flames of this division. Yes, Trump had a hand as well with all of his idiotic Tweets and trying to communicate with Americans through social media — something no other president has ever done. While a lot of his policies were for the good of America, his mouth was nothing but pure venom and created a “take a side” mentality.
As a church-going member of the First United Methodist Church, I’ve seen a decline in the number of people attending church. Recently I counted 24 empty pews out of 40 during a church service. More than half of the church, and churches all across this country, are empty. People have walked away from the church but more devastating, they’ve walked away from God. Our schools and state officials have also taken God out of the equation with few willing to challenge the powers that be to bring back this one saving grace.
The family dynamic has all but disappeared from the American landscape. It used to be our foundation for what was right with this country. Divorce attorneys are in high demand and single parent dwellings are on the rise. People no longer see the importance of the family structure and the stability it brings to the next generation.
One common quote I hear so often amongst couples is, “I’m not happy.” I’m sorry, but I don’t recall seeing anywhere in my Christian upbringing where the good Lord above promises happiness. But he has given us the tools and the playbook (the Bible) to follow and work things out and to do what’s always in the best interest of the family and the children.
Kids need a mom and a dad under the same roof. This is critical for their total development as a boy or a girl. We have kids today who are so confused with who and what they are. Really?!!!
This is a total lack of parenting and not being exposed to the Word of God. Do you remember the slogan a few years ago for educating our children? “No child left behind.” Well, we have left the children behind, and they will turn in whatever direction they can to get the answers they’re looking for. The problem is they’re turning to the wrong people and looking in the wrong places.
People have become so consumed with their own selfish needs that they have forgotten what’s really important. Couples’ ability to communicate effectively and fight hard to save their marriages seemingly no longer exists. It’s easier to give up and just get a divorce.
Meanwhile, our churches are empty, we have turned our backs on God, and we wonder why we are in the shape we’re in. If this one concept of getting back in the church does not return to the American landscape, we are doomed to fall not only from God’s grace, but as a nation as well. We must start to rebuild our church base and bring back the family dynamics that are missing today.
We must elect officials who have the same moral compass as the church. Know what and who the people are you’re voting for and what they represent. If we as Christians don’t rise up and redirect our nation, we will be at a point of no return. I’m not so sure we’re not already there.
For those of you who have made a point to acknowledge my articles this year, I say, “Thank you!” It always makes my day to know that what I’m writing has touched someone in a good way. I’m always very appreciative of the kind words you’ve sent in person, by text or by email.
I hope each of you have a healthy and prosperous 2023! See you on the other side! Until then, good luck, good fishing and don’t forget your sunscreen.
BOM was a gold sponsor of the Sabine Freestate Festival. Pictured left to right: Clancy Stewart and BOM’s Tiffany Miller.
The South Toledo Bend Water District boil advisory has been rescinded. Water no longer needs to be boiled.
February 7, 1935 – December 27, 2022
Service: Saturday, December 31 at 10 am at Warren Meadows Funeral Home Chapel
BATON ROUGE- The final fireworks sales season of the year kicked off this week, so the State Fire Marshal’s Office (SFM) wants to encourage all Louisiana residents to not only be safe when using fireworks, but knowledgeable when buying them.
More than 500 retail fireworks permits have been issued for this end-of-the-year season, as it is state law for wholesale and retail fireworks business operators to be appropriately licensed by the SFM, in the parishes and municipalities where they are legally allowed. The sales season extends through 11:59 p.m. on January 1.
The SFM encourages, first and foremost, that families choose to enjoy public fireworks displays over creating their own. However, if purchasing fireworks is your preference, we advise families to be mindful of whether the stand they are purchasing from has been permitted by this office. You can request to see permitting information from any retail fireworks business you patron. The SFM encourages reporting any suspicious or illegal sales of fireworks to 1-800-256-5452 or by visiting our website, lasfm.org.
In addition, we want everyone to enjoy fireworks in the safest way possible. Some of the top ways to do that are:
- Detonating devices at least 200 feet away from structures, vehicles and rubbish
- Never allowing children to light fireworks
- Never operating fireworks while impaired
- Lighting devices one at a time and monitoring embers released with a bucket of water or hose nearby
- Discarding detonated items by wetting them down to prevent reignition and not disposing of them in a trash container immediately
COLLEGE STATION, Texas – A hot start Tuesday night inside Reed Arena put the Northwestern State men’s basketball team within reach of its second win against a Power Five opponent this season.
The Demons, however, were unable to sustain that momentum in the second half and fell to Texas A&M, 64-52, in their final non-conference game of the regular season.
Playing for the first time in seven days, NSU (8-5) broke quickly and built as much as a 15-point lead in the first half against the Aggies (7-5).
Starting with Ja’Monta Black’s 3-pointer 14 seconds into the game, the Demons did not trail in the first half thanks in large part to a hot shooting performance from beyond the arc.
NSU hit seven of its 15 first-half 3-pointers, nearly reaching its average of almost nine made 3s in a game. Both Isaac Haney and Black connected on three 3s in the opening half.
Black’s final 3 of the first half gave NSU its largest lead of the game, a 27-12 advantage with 9:04 to play in the half.
That’s when the Aggies began to find their legs, finishing the half by holding NSU to 2-for-8 shooting to end the half with both baskets coming from Haney 3-pointers. Buoyed by that defensive prowess, Texas A&M sliced the lead to five at the break, Northwestern State’s smallest advantage since a 14-10 lead with 14:38 to play.
Even with the sluggish finish, the Demons shot 46.7 percent (7 for 15) from 3-point range in the opening half.
The Aggies were the faster-starting team in the second half, starting on a 9-0 run across the first 3:04 of the second stanza.
Again, it was a Demon 3-pointer that quelled the run as DeMarcus Sharp knocked down a step-back 3 to pull NSU within one.
With both defenses tightening, the Demons were able to pull even again on a Black 3 with 13:14 to play, squaring the game at 42.
The 3 remained nearly the Demons’ sole source of offense in the second half. NSU missed all seven of its two-point field goal attempts in the half and hit six of 25 3-point tries.
NSU finished with a season-best 13 made 3s on a school single-game record 40 3-point attempts.
The only second-half point for Northwestern State that did not come from a 3-pointer was a Jalen Hampton free throw with 3:11 to play.
The Aggies got 13 second-half points from Tyrece Radford as part of a 121-point, 10-rebound double-double. Radford and Henry Coleman III (24 points) keyed a 36-6 advantage for the Aggies in points in the paint.
Haney (16), Sharp (15) and Black (15) led Northwestern State in scoring while Sharp grabbed a team-leading seven rebounds and handed out six assists.
The Demons return to action Saturday when they host Texas A&M-Corpus Christ in the Southland Conference opener for both teams. Tipoff is set for 2:30 p.m. in Prather Coliseum.
In good ol’ 2022, we celebrated the 30th anniversary of Love Languages, a lady named Amy earned $1 million-plus and made the Jeopardy! TV game show cry “Uncle!”, LSU’s football team won more games than even the Tigers’ most loyal and optimistic fan thought possible, and Port-O-Lets again made their presence known during Mardi Gras as one of the best inventions since indoor plumbing — which turned out to be heavy plastic outdoor plumbing.
These were just some of the more light-hearted and trivial happenings of a somewhat gray 2022, a year that had this One Big Thing going for it: it wasn’t 2021 or, Lord help us all, 2020, when our leaders didn’t.
I was born at night, but not last night.
Actually, I was born at 8:15 in the morning, just in time to clock in, and have been carrying my little tool box and lunch pail since. Like you, the past two years have beaten all I’ve ever seen and have tried, overly hard, to beat us down.
But here we are, still flying the flag, like the old man in Hemingway’s The Old Man and the Sea, a little thinner and gaunt, showing some deep wrinkles and splotches, some deep-creased scars, but our eyes are bright and cheerful and undefeated.
We can hardly afford to buy the toot off a whistle if they were selling for a nickel apiece, but we soldier on. The world keeps spinning and we’re happy to be along for the ride into what we trust will be a more upbeat 2023.
2022 was the year that brought us Wordle. Remember last year this time when everybody was Wordleing? The fad has worn off a bit, but last spring, Wordle was almost as popular as Taylor Swift.
2022 was also the year when Top Gun: Maverick became required viewing. Is it the best sequel since The Godfather Part II?
Fair Grounds Field was demolished in 2022 — until it wasn’t. Red tape and bat poop sort of sums up the year; the higher-ups don’t want to admit a mistake and get things back on greased grooves.
Closer to home, we became grandparents in July 2022, a definite highlight. She’s a healthy five months old. Because we are good grandparents, we took her to see Top Gun: Maverick five times and sold all we have except our toothbrushes to get her a Taylor Swift concert ticket. She’ll have to go alone because one is all we could afford but the kid has got to learn to stand on her own at some point.
We did not get her a ticket to Monday’s Cheez-It Citrus Bowl in Orlando when 9-4 LSU takes on 8-5 Purdue/Purdon’t because although we love Chees-Its, one of the highest quality dairy foods you can eat, who knew LSU could threaten a 10-win season? This is a team that started a receiver at quarterback and had 38 players on scholarship in last year’s bowl game, something called the TaxAct Texas Bowl when Kansas State beat what was left of the Tigers, 42-20.
Hat tippage to new coach Brian Kelly and Tiger fans everywhere for their expectation-exceeding results this fall.
Since this is the first time ever the two programs have met and since the only alum of Purdue people in these parts might know is New Orleans Saints forever-hero Drew Brees, you might find it of interest that the nice lady who invented Stovetop Stuffing, Ruth Siems, went to Purdue, as did Orville Redenbacher, the popcorn magnate. Doubtful that either of those things will come into play during Monday’s game — unless the Boilermakers have Stovetop Stuffing and popcorn for pregame. Then we really like LSU to cover the two-touchdown spread. Kick is at noon Monday, Jan. 2.
2023 kicks off the day before.
Contact Teddy at firstname.lastname@example.org
Many is bringing the Mardi Gras parade back on Saturday, Jan. 28, 2023 at 5 pm, rolling down San Antonio Avenue with a fun nighttime parade. Pet entries welcomed. Costumes, beads, and more, don’t miss out on a night of fun for the whole family.
By Brad Dison
The coming of a new year brings hope for us all. It is a chance to wipe the slate clean and start anew. Many of us will set goals which we could never achieve, but we must believe that we can achieve anything. We much believe in ourselves. No matter what happens this coming year, don’t stop believing in yourself.
In the early 1970s, Jonathan moved from his hometown of Chicago to Los Angeles, California. The only being Jonathan knew in “the City of Angels” was his beloved dog that he brought with him from Chicago. Jonathan, a talented musician, hoped to “make it big” in the music industry. At eight years old, Jonathan began taking accordion lessons. As a teenager, he made extra money playing accordion and piano in clubs and at parties. Following high school, Jonathan attended the Chicago Conservatory of Music. His parents, teachers, and friends all thought he had the talent required to “make it,” and encouraged him to give it a shot.
Jonathan was hopeful when he arrived in Los Angeles, but he quickly began to struggle just to survive. There were opportunities for up-and-coming musicians to play, but the market was saturated with fine musicians who often played for little or no pay. More often than not, Jonathan’s income from playing music was too little to allow him to pay his bills and to eat, too. He became one of Los Angeles’s many starving artists. When he became desperate, which happened often, Jonathan ashamedly called his father and asked for a small loan. His father always sent Jonathan what money he could and reassured him that one day things would be better.
Then, an event happened which brought Jonathan to the point of giving up on his dream, his beloved dog was hit by a car and severely injured. He had no money to pay the vet. Once again, he called his father for another loan. His father could hear the discouragement in his voice more than any other time that Jonathan had called. “Dad,” Jonathan asked in a dispirited voice, “should I just give up on this thing and come home?” His father reassured him as he always had. “No. Don’t come home,” his father said. Always full of encouragement, his father gave him another piece of advice which Jonathan thought important enough to jot down in his notebook.
With his father’s reassurance, Jonathan kept searching for the right opportunity. He thought that opportunity had finally arrived in 1976 when he recorded a solo album which he named after his hometown, “Windy City Breakdown.” The album failed to chart, and Jonathan’s struggle continued. In 1978, Jonathan joined a British rock group called The Babys. Jonathan recorded two albums with The Babys, but the band failed to achieve the level of success they had hoped for and, in 1980, the group disbanded. In that same year, Jonathan joined another band and began working on an album with them. The band needed two more songs to complete the album, and the band’s lead singer asked Jonathan if he had any song ideas. Jonathan flipped through his notebook and read again the advice his father had given him several years earlier. Those three simple words of encouragement became the inspiration of and title of one of Jonathan’s band’s biggest hits. It has been described as the “perfect rock song” which featured Jonathan playing “one of the best opening keyboard riffs in rock.” The song was the best-selling digital track from the 20th century. The band was Journey. The name of the song and the advice his father gave Jonathan Cain was,… “Don’t Stop Believin’.”
Those three words were good advice from Jonathan’s father then and have remained good advice to listeners for over forty years. If we “Don’t Stop Believin’” in ourselves, we can accomplish anything in the coming new year.
Happy New Year!
Source: Elkins, Kimberly, “Don’t Stop Believin’,” Guideposts, p.75.
To our valued customers,
Kelvin and I are writing this letter to make you aware that effective January 1, 2023, Clarks Trucking of Many, LLC will be merging and working under the name EarthMovers Construction, LLC. EarthMovers Construction will be expanding our business and allow for us to continue to take care of each of our valued customers as we have always done.
Kelvin will continue to manage and oversee the business as he has done for the past 30 years. You can be assured that the morals, values, and work ethic that he has always used to conduct his business throughout the years will continue. We are also happy to let you know that each of the current employees that have been part of Clarks Trucking will continue to be a part of EarthMovers Construction, LLC.
We do appreciate all the past business that we have had and look forward to any future opportunities to continue to work with you. These same great people will continue to work hard for you, just under a different company name. If you have any questions or concerns, please don’t hesitate to contact us. We will be happy to discuss the new company EarthMovers Construction, LLC, and all we are looking forward to with it.
Clarks Trucking, LLC
Kelvin Clark, Owner
EarthMovers Construction, LLC
PO Box 1308
Many, La 71449
Blake Byles, Owner
December 6, 1924 – December 21, 2022
Visitation: Will be in the church before the service, beginning at 8:30 am.
Service: Wednesday, December 28, 2022 at 10 am at Trinity Episcopal Church, Natchitoches.
October 30, 1970 – December 25, 2022
There will be chances of snow, freezing drizzles, wind chill values as low as -4 degrees, and wind gusts up to 35mph.