The Hancock-Henderson Quill, Inc.

The Wisdom Of Barnyard Bruke: "How many observe Christ's birthday! How few, his precepts! O! "tis easier to keep holidays than commandments."

Greetings to everyone in western Illinois. It's come'n on close to Christmas as it is only a little over one week away. It's been a long time since I've seen this much corn standing in the field a wait'n for harvest just around Christmas time. It sure has the markets spooked, with prices reacting accordingly.

Hopefully those that store grain on the farm are a watch'n those bins carefully. I've heard some awful stories already. Let's not let it happen to you as being one of those who lose grain to spoilage, and heavy dockage. Keep an eye on your years efforts, and hard work, and monitor those bins diligently.

Some corn was delivered to a local elevator last week testing over 40% moisture. Seems the frost got to it before it had matured. One farmer tells of putting beans in his bin at 15% and it now tests 19%. Think of the dockage for those two examples!

I read where the EPA has declared carbon dioxide (CO2) as a poisonous gas. And yet every can and/or bottle of soda pop derives it's fizz from the C02 injected into it. Are they now going to outlaw soda pop or maybe just put a tax on burping the C02 back up after drinking it?

It is also rumored the need to place a tax on having children. It seems each new child brought into this world breathes in oxygen and exhales carbon dioxide-contributing to, "Global Warming".

Global warming has recently been exposed as an effort fueled by, "Cooked Books". The data was not derived, assessed, and utilized in a scientific manner. In fact those that, "Cooked the Books" did it for selfish monetary gain.

I am totally dismayed that scientists would do such a thing and that men like Al Gore would make millions of dollars from the scam. Next thing you know we'll find out there's not really a Santa Claus and the Easter Bunny is only a fake!

On a better note-on December 21, (Forefathers Day) in 1620, the Mayflower landed at Plymouth Rock after a 63-day voyage, and the colonists began to disembark. "Down to the Plymouth Rock, that had been to their feet as a doorstep. Into a world unknown-the cornerstone of a nation"! (Henry Wadsworth Longfellow).

On December 23, 1823, Clemont Moore printed a poem in the Troy (N.Y.) Sentinel entitled, "A visit from St. Nicholas". How things have changed from Plymouth Rock, thru the first poem on St. Nicholas, until now.

Ben Franklin observed, "How many observe Christ's birthday! How few, his precepts! O! "tis easier to keep holidays than commandments".

In colonial New England, Christmas holiday observances were forcibly banned by Puritans and Presbyterians, who saw Christmas as nothing more than an excuse for Christmas to take part in a pagan holiday. In truth, the early church often overlaid Christian themes on pre-Christian seasonal celebrations, in this case the winter solstice.

In colonial days Christmas was celebrated more simply than it is today, with a few token gifts for children (usually of a practical nature), a lengthy church service, and a sumptuous family feast. Yet even in its simplicity there were those who saw how easily the Christmas holiday could obscure rather than highlight the birth of Christ. That sentiment strikes a chord with many today.

One young man who kept the spirit of Christmas in focus was Ryan Rigney of Manchester, Tennessee. One year, Ryan decided to use his Christmas money to buy socks for homeless men at the Nashville Union Mission. Ryan was later chosen as a runner-up in a national, "Make a Difference Day" contest designed to honor those who help the less fortunate. Ryan used his $250 award to buy more socks for the homeless.

It has been stated, "The simplest toy, one which even the youngest child can operate, is called a grandparent".

Interesting dates for me at this time of year are: December 24, 1818, in Austria, Franz Gruber sang "Silent Night in his German tongue. Later it was translated to many other languages including English. You've missed a real treat if'n you've never heard it sung in it's original tongue; December 25, 1914, British and German troops observed a spontaneous and unofficial truce on the western front. They were later severely chastised by their superiors; and on December 26, 1776, George Washington crossed the ice-clogged Delaware River to attack Hesian forces in Trenton, New Jersey, at dawn. The victory and result of that effort brought in these United States and the defeat of British tyranny.

I was recently invited to a company appreciation holiday party. Before the meal I was surprisingly asked to give a prayer. I guess maybe because it was felt that this was my custom. Later a middle aged lady came to me and proclaimed, "In 40 years of attending company Christmas parties this was her first time of ever hearing prayer given before the meal."

I've been fret'n on that comment ever since. I guess Woodrow Wilson said it best, "One cool judgment is worth a thousand hasty counsels. The thing to do is to supply light and not heat".

These are the special times of Christmas.

Keep n Smile'n

Catch ya later

Barnyard Bruke