1928 - Alderson High School - 1968



Time to give Back
Patty Mann Underwood

I remember when I was growing up back in West Virginia about the only care I had was if I had something decent to wear to school and the other students would accept me. Or if I could keep a straight line while marching in the band at half time at the football game. Or if we could get about 50 cents together to buy enough gas to have a good time driving around. Or when we would meet at the Snack Shack and listen to the jukebox, now that was really cool.

Married, wife and mother of five children, and the lean years that followed. Did our children have decent clothing to wear to school and were they accepted by the other students. Or were they good enough to make the football team or debate team or the million and one things that they could not survive without. Having all five children grow up, get jobs and have families of their own, now that was really, really cool.

Then it was Al and I working and planning on retirement and planning that log house so we could live happily ever after. The retirement came, the large log house was built and it didn't seem enough. Always needing something more. Never quiet content. So the log house went and a much smaller home was bought and we found out that we had more time and life was looking much better. But there was still that something missing. We sat
down, talked about it and found out that what was missing was the need to give. Our family was self-sufficient and it wasn't really much fun to buy them something when they most often had anything they wanted or needed.

So off to the local high school we went and ask the counselors if they knew any students that really needed something for Christmas. Oh my, we surly did find some. We were given the names of six young ladies and what they would really like most for Christmas. Out of the six, there were four with babies. They wished for a baby bed, shoes for children and the girls, a bike so that one girl could ride it to her job and she wouldn't have to walk, warm winter coats, and one just wanted a Christmas tree. Her family  would not be able to afford one until sometime after the holidays. The list seemed very long but we knew we could make most of their wishes come true.

After discussing this with our children and all agreed that we could forgo any presents to them and only our youngest grandchildren would be given presents, it was off to the stores and we bought every wish and then a box of candy to make it seem extra special. We took our truck loaded with gifts to the high school and all the presents were put in a room and we went on our way feeling so warm inside.

After Christmas we received a thank you from the counselor at the high school and inside the envelope was enclosed a thank you card and a picture of a young girl and a baby boy. She stated that what we had done was so good that when she grew up she hoped she would be able to help someone as we had helped her.

We never knew any of the girls that we gave to and the only thing we ask is that they will be able to help someone else when they get the chance.

So now that we have started "Giving Back" that something that was missing in our lives seems to have disappeared . And we are anxiously awaiting the holiday season and wondering whose name will appear on the list this year.

Every year we join with our friends for "Make a Difference Day" in October but we have found out everyday can make a difference. Will you make a difference in someone's life today?



My First Christmas In Heaven

I see the countless Christmas trees around the world below

With tiny lights like Heaven's stars reflecting on the snow.

The sight is so spectacular please wipe away that tear,

For I am spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.

I hear the many Christmas songs that people hold so dear,

But the sound of music cannot compare with the Christmas choir up here.

I have no words to tell you of the joy their voices bring

For it is beyond description, to hear the angels sing.

I know how much you miss me. I see the pain inside your heart

But I am no so far away-we really are not apart.

So be happy for me dear ones. You know I hold you dear,

And be glad I'm spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.

I send you each a special gift from my heavenly home above,

I send you each a memory of my undying love.

After all Love is a gift - more precious than pure gold,

It was always most important in the stories Jesus told.

Please love one another as The Father said to do,

For I can not count the blessings or the love He has for you.

So have a merry Christmas - and wipe away that tear.

Remember, I'm spending Christmas with Jesus Christ this year.