Christmas Cards No More

Have you ever thought about sending a Christmas card to your family and friends or do you just send a Christmas text? I know a few just laughed when they read that but I am being very serious. When I was a teenager, being the youngest grandchild and a granddaughter at that, I took up much time with my grandmother. After Thanksgiving lunch every year that I can remember after becoming a teenager, I would help her fix her Christmas cards. She had them ready to mail out on December 1st or around there. She had her address book that we went through looking at who she needed to send a card to and she looked through the address labels of those that sent to her the year before, yes she kept them ALL! She enjoyed sending as much as she enjoyed receiving Christmas cards. She put a special message in each card. I think back on those times and it brings such great joy to me knowing that time with her was so precious to us both. I sure miss fixing those cards for her. She kept EVERY one of her cards from year to year to glance back over. Have you mailed your cards today?

Thanksgiving Thursday & Black Friday Shopping… 1 2 3 GO!

I can remember when I was a little girl, Black Friday, was a BIG thing. It still is today but much different. On Thanksgiving Day, after lunch all the ladies would have their Albany Herald out looking through all the sale papers and making a plan for the next day. At that time there was NEVER a store opened on Thanksgiving Day. One by one, stores started opening on Thanksgiving Day. It takes away from the fun of the very early Friday morning shopping but some like to do it. It’s hard for me to go on Thanksgiving because after a good Thanksgiving meal, I need a nap! For those that want to do a little more shopping on Thanksgiving, these are the places that are planning to be open for those Thanksgiving Shoppers: Walmart, Kmart, Khols, Target, Toys-R-Us, Macys, JC Penney, Best Buy, Big Lots, Bass Pro Shops, Dollar General, Belk, Rite Aid, Game Stop, Old Navy, Family Dollar, Goody’s, Walgreen’s, Michael’s and Stein Mart. All store times for opening and closing do vary so please check out each store before going. We hope everyone will enjoy the shopping and fellowship with friends and family!

From The Martin News….

The Martin News wants to wish each and everyone of you a very Happy Thanksgiving. We each have so much to be thankful for. Here at The Martin News we are very thankful for each one of our supporters. Whether you purchase advertisement, read and view our weekly news publication, like and share on our Facebook page, say kind words and your prayers, we are very appreciative. We could not be what we are today without you and for that we will be forever grateful. Thank you all and Happy Thanksgiving from The Martin News.

Macy’s Day Parade is Worth the Watch

The Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade is an annual parade presented by the U.S.-based department store chain Macy’s. The tradition started in 1924 tying it for the second-oldest Thanksgiving parade in the United States with America’s Thanksgiving Parade in Detroit (with both parades being four years younger than the 6abc Dunkin’ Donuts Thanksgiving Day Parade in Philadelphia). The three-hour Macy’s event is held in New York City starting at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time on Thanksgiving Day, and has been televised nationally on NBC since 1952. In the 1920s, many of Macy’s department store employees were first-generation immigrants. Proud of their new American heritage, they wanted to celebrate the American holiday of Thanksgiving with the type of festival their parents had loved in Europe. In 1924, the annual Thanksgiving parade started by Louis Bamberger in Newark, New Jersey at the Bamberger’s store was transferred to New York City by Macy’s. In New York, the employees marched to Macy’s flagship store on 34th Street dressed in vibrant costumes. There were floats, professional bands and live animals borrowed from the Central Park Zoo. At the end of that first parade, as has been the case with every parade since, Santa Claus was welcomed into Herald Square. At this first parade, however, the Jolly Old Elf was enthroned on the Macy’s balcony at the 34th Street store entrance, where he was then “crowned” “King of the Kiddies.” With an audience of over 250,000 people, the parade was such a success that Macy’s declared it would become an annual event. Anthony “Tony” Frederick Sarg loved to work with marionettes from an early age. After moving to London to start his own marionette business, Sarg moved to New York City to perform with his puppets on the street. Macy’s heard about Sarg’s talents and asked him to design a window display of a parade for the store. Sarg’s large animal-shaped balloons, produced by the Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio, replaced the live animals in 1927 when the Felix the Cat balloon made its debut. Felix was filled with air, but by the next year, helium was used to fill the expanding cast of balloons. At the finale of the 1928 parade, the balloons were released into the sky, where they unexpectedly burst. The following year, they were redesigned with safety valves to allow them to float for a few days. Address labels were sewn into them, so that whoever found and mailed back the discarded balloon received a gift from Macy’s. Through the 1930s, the Parade continued to grow, with crowds of over one million people lining the parade route in 1933. The first Mickey Mouse balloon entered the parade in 1934. The annual festivities were broadcast on local radio stations in New York City from 1932 to 1941, and resumed in 1945, running through 1951. The parade was suspended from 1942 to 1944 as a result of World War II, owing to the need for rubber and helium in the war effort. The parade resumed in 1945 using the route that it followed until 2008. The parade became known nationwide after being prominently featured in the 1947 film, Miracle on 34th Street, which included footage of the 1946 festivities. The event was first broadcast on network television in 1948. By this point the event, and Macy’s sponsorship of it, were sufficiently well-known to give rise to the colloquialism “Macy’s Day Parade”. Since 1984, the balloons have been made by Raven Aerostar (a division of Sioux Falls, South Dakota-based Raven Industries). I absolutely love watching the parade. It has always been something I did even when I was a little girl and mama was cooking Thanksgiving lunch, I would be watching the parade. It is something about that parade that introduces Christmas to the season. I can’t tell you my favorite part because I love the singing and dancing, I love the bands, I love hearing all the people talking, I love the floats, I love Santa. There is so much to enjoy about The Macy’s Day Parade. Such beautiful colors and beautiful floats. My family will be tuned in, will yours?

Tips for Safely Frying a Turkey

Frying a holiday turkey can be tricky. Here are some tips from UGA experts to help make sure your bird is thoroughly cooked and your holiday doesn’t include a trip to the emergency room or a call to the fire department. “People who fry turkeys say it produces a moister turkey. And it’s quicker,” said Elizabeth Andress, a UGA Cooperative Extension food safety specialist. “But in the eyes of safety experts, the typical propane-fueled turkey fryer is a major accident waiting to happen. There are definitely safety issues to consider.” Don’t use too much oil: Some of the most serious injuries are caused by faulty or misused equipment, like unstable fryer stands, uninsulated pot handles and or fry pots that have been overfilled with oil. Filling the pot too full of oil can cause the oil to spill over when the turkey is placed in the pot. Spillovers at cooking temperatures can cause severe burns, Andress warns. Food safety by the fryer: “You have to be sure all the harmful bacteria have been killed,” Andress said. “The only way to do this is to measure the temperature of the cooked turkey in several places with a food thermometer.” First, heat the oil to 365 to 375 degrees Fahrenheit. This usually takes 45 minutes to an hour. Next, add your turkey and allow the oil to return to 365 to 375 degrees. Whole turkeys require about 3 minutes per pound to cook. To be sure your bird is safely cooked, she said, the temperature must reach at least 165 degrees in the thickest part of the breast. Some cooks prefer the innermost part of the thigh to reach 180 degrees. Andress recommends following these safety steps: Use propane-fired turkey fryers outdoors, a safe distance from buildings and anything that can burn, never use turkey fryers on wooden decks or inside garages, place the fryer on a flat surface to reduce the risk of accidental tipping, never leave the fryer unattended, never allow children or pets near the fryer. Even after use, the oil inside the pot can remain dangerously hot for hours, don’t overfill the fryer, use well-insulated potholders or oven mitts when touching the pot or lid handles, make sure the turkey is completely thawed. Be careful with marinades. Oil and water don’t mix, and water causes oil to spill over, which could cause a fire or explosion hazard and keep an all-purpose fire extinguisher nearby. And never use water to extinguish a grease fire.
Source: Tifton Grapevine

The Commissioner of Securities Announces Amendment to the Invest Georgia Exemption (IGE)

The Securities and Charities Division of The Office of the Secretary of State (“Division”) has adopted an amendment to Rule 590-4-2-.08, the Invest Georgia Exemption, to reflect changes implemented by the Securities and Exchange Commission (“SEC”). The SEC changes are designed to modernize the intrastate offering exemption of Section 3(a)(11) of the Securities Act of 1933 by updating the Rule 147 safe harbor and introducing a new exemption, Rule 147A. The purpose of the Division’s amendment is to facilitate greater investment through the offer or sale of a security by an issuer by providing greater flexibility to those seeking to use IGE to facilitate investment and entrepreneurial activities within Georgia. Additionally, the amendment to IGE is intended to reduce the regulatory impact of the SEC’s amendment on existing and future issuers of securities.  This amendment is effective as of  July 11, 2017. The Invest Georgia Exemption (“IGE”) was created in 2011 by the Secretary of State Brian P. Kemp in his capacity as Commissioner of Securities. IGE allows for-profit businesses formed under Georgia law to raise up to $5 million from Georgia resident investors. Under IGE, Issuers of securities are limited to selling no more than $10,000 in securities to non-accredited Georgia investors. There is no limit for accredited Georgia investors. The Issuer must file a Form GA-1 with the Georgia Commissioner of Securities. For more information on the IGE, please contact the Georgia Securities Division at 404-654-6023 or IGE is a notice filing and does not constitute a license or registration. The issuance of a notice filing does not mean that the Georgia Commissioner of Securities has passed, in any way, upon the truth, completeness, or accuracy of the information filed, the merits of the securities offered, or has recommended or given approval to such security or transaction.

Pecan Crop Looking Good

Tropical Storm Irma knocked down pecan trees, broke tree limbs and blew nuts off the trees and out of their shucks when it moved through Georgia in September, but a local pecan expert is still optimistic about this year’s crop, estimating yields up to 100 million pounds. Lenny Wells, pecan specialist with the University of Georgia Cooperative Extension in Tifton, says the pecan harvest is well underway and farmers are taking advantage of dry weather and good prices. As a result, the pecan market softened in recent weeks, but Wells doesn’t expect the price to stay low for long. “We often see this trend when the nuts really start rolling in every year. The last several years, the price bumped back up again after a couple of weeks as many growers started holding pecans. I wouldn’t be surprised to see this happen again,” Wells says. The crop’s development was ahead of schedule by about 10 days this year. All varieties are currently being harvested, and because of the early timing of nut maturity, Wells expects most of this year’s harvest to be completed by early December. Before pecans fully mature, they are enclosed in a green shuck, or husk. When Tropical Storm Irma moved through on Sept. 11, a lot of those immature pecans were knocked to the ground, rendering them useless.

Source: Tifton Grapevine

Golden Radish Award: Tift Schools Named Outstanding for Farm to School

The Tift County School System has been given the “Outstanding District” Golden Radish Award, the highest level of recognition in the state for farm-to-school programs. Tift County’s School Nutrition Department’s mission is to expose, educate and elevate the quality of meals served to 7,600 students in the district’s 12 schools.  Its initiative is recognized as one of the state’s most innovative programs focused on agricultural and nutrition education, supporting local farmers and getting students excited to eat healthy and fresh local foods.  Tift County Schools was also recognized at the Platinum level for its accomplishments during the last school year, which include: (1) The School Nutrition Department purchased a cow from a student and had it processed by a local community partner. The meat provided meals for four days to more than 300 students at Omega Elementary, (2) The district supports a 15-acre farm where students learn how to plant, maintain and glean crops on a larger scale. Students also learn how to extend the life of their harvest at the county’s state of the art canning facility maintained by an FFA instructor ns (3) Local farmer Len Lastinger taught students how to harvest eggs from the schools’ laying hens. The corresponding omelet taste test was a big hit. Georgia’s agriculture, education and public health departments, along with University of Georgia Cooperative Extension and Georgia Organics representatives joined at the Georgia Railroad Freight Depot in Atlanta to celebrate more than 40 percent of Georgia school districts with farm to school programs. Pictured is Ga. Agriculture Commissioner Gary Black, from left, Georgia Organics Director Alice Rolls, Tift Superintendent Patrick Atwater, Tift School Nutrition Director Vanessa Hayes, Ga. Health Commissioner J. Patrick O’Neal, UGA Extension Dean Laura Perry Johnson and state School Superintendent Richard Woods at the Atlanta ceremony.
Source: Tifton Grapevine

Boy with Tumor Asks for Ornaments to Bring Joy to his Family

Brantley is sick and he wants to celebrate Christmas again. Do you want to help? Bows, wreaths and garland glimmering with lights welcome visitors as they arrive at the Dobbs home in Hiram, Georgia. “Christmas literally blew up in our house the day after Halloween,” Brandon Dobbs laughs. For the Dobbs family, Christmas is a feeling, not a day on the calendar. “It just makes everybody happy,” Jamie Dobbs said. They are learning that joy is a choice and a mindset. It is medicine. You can hear giggling coming from the living room. Six-year-old Brantley has moved his bed downstairs these days. The stairs are too much work. His entire body is swollen from the treatments, medication and another round of steroids. Brantley points to a superhero Christmas tree on the wall above his bed. “There is Superman, Flash and Captain America,” he explains. “They all have cool superpowers.” He loves to show off the army of super heroes that surround him and tease his 5-year-old little sister Lucy. “You act Crazy,” Brantley said to her. Lucy’s favorite spot is at the foot of her brother’s bed. “I’m kidding,” He smiles. They are typical brother and sister, Dad says. “But they are best friends.” There is a picture of Brantley and Lucy together that hangs over the fireplace. It shows them soon after doctors found the bump in Brantley’s head as he calls it. He has an inoperable brain tumor, called DIPG. “Most kids live 5 to 9 months, sometimes they live a year,” Mom said. “Brantley is on month 20 now.” So every day of each month is an opportunity to share love and focus on happiness. That is why you’ll find Christmas in every nook and cranny of the house. A friend of the family shared Brantley’s story on Facebook asking people to send ornaments to brighten his days. And the flood gates of encouragement opened. “We started getting them in and it was amazing,” Jamie Dobbs said. “He has been smiling and laughing and we haven’t seen that a lot.” “He loves opening all the ornaments and it makes us happy to watch him with his gifts,” Brandon Dobbs said. Each gift is love packaged. Love universal. The boxes are arriving from all over the country and many parts of the world. Brandon said, “They’ve come from Canada, Ireland, England, Alaska, Hawaii, Maine…” Just that morning Jamie opened a box from Mexico and the United Arab Emirates. “We can’t keep up,” She laughs. “We get packages every day.” Lucy has learned what time love arrives each day. She stands out on the front porch and waits for the mail truck to pull into the driveway. She carries a stack of smiles up the stairs. It always comes right on time. Brantley smiles and laughs as he opens the gifts. As he does, dad is at a big map on the wall. They put a flag in place people have sent an ornament. There are more than a hundred markers already. “It means so much because he has touched so many lives and continues to show us that he is still touching lives,” Jamie said. There is one place not on any map that Brantley talks about, in his dreams, to God. “He talks to me,” Brantley said in a matter-of-fact way. “He is a big white cloud.” He’s talked to his mom about it. “He usually shares his conversations with God on the really hard days,” she said. “He said it’s just clouds and a little bit of light.” Brantley says God talks to him about the bump on his head. He says God reassures him that everything will be alright. “It is just complete calmness that comes over him,” Jamie said. “He’ll tell you that he knows he is going to heaven and he is ok with that because of the conversation.” She says as a mom, that is the hardest and the best thing a child could every say. Brantley is only 6, but the wisdom of his soul is much greater. His eyes are starting to get heavy. He’s tired from opening all those presents. Lanise Shortell sits on the edge of his bed. She keeps a close eye on him. Shortell is his Pediatric Hospice Nurse, with Visiting Nurse, and Hospice Atlanta. The Dobbs’s consider her family. “We could not go through this without her support,” Brandon said. She helps with medication, communication with doctors, and helps prepare everyone in the family, emotionally, for the difficult days ahead. “She is an angel,” Jamie adds. Shortell says it is the other way around. “Brantley has brought joy to our life. He’s allowed us to really see things from the point of view of a child. His faith is profound,” she said. Brantley’s dad notices he’s drifted off, “I think he is asleep now.” In his hand, an ornament of Big Ben in London. His mom snuggles him and kisses his cheek. She whispers in his ear, “do you know I love you.” Without opening his eyes, Brantley nods. She whispers again, “Do you love me bunches?” Brantley smiles and nods again. Brantley has taught them that joy is a mindset and medicine for the soul, in any season. His dad gently touches his knee. “He’s inspired us to live every day to the best. No regrets, just be happy.” What a beautiful story from 11alive. My family and I are going to get our package together. If you’d like to send an ornament or card to Brantley, send them to: Hospice Atlanta 1244 Park Vista Dr. Atlanta GA 30319 Attention: Brantley’s Christmas Cheer c/o Lanise.

Worth School News

School is out this week for the Thanksgiving holidays. We sure hope everyone is enjoying time off from school and enjoying time with family. The Martin News wishes you all a great holiday season. Here is some news form the schools before they left for the holidays.

WCPS has loaded several pictures, including those from the Veteran’s Day program and student of the week pictures, to the Worth County Primary School Facebook page. Be sure to check them out.

WCES has something to be extremely excited about! The statement from the Governor’s Office of Student Achievement web site further demonstrates the commitment of the faculty and staff at WCES and the hard work of our students and parents. Worth County Elementary School’s overall performance is higher than 72% of schools in the state and is higher than its district. Its student’s academic growth is higher than 79% of schools in the state. Way to go WCES.

WCMS Gifted/Accelerated students are selling tickets for their fundraiser. The tickets are for a chance to win a gift basket. There are several different themed baskets and tickets are $5 each. Drawing will be held on December 14th. Please see a Gifted/Accelerated student for a ticket or check on Facebook. Be sure to look on the Worth County Middle School Facebook page for the pictures they recently uploaded of the Beta Club Induction Ceremony and the WCMS “A” Honor Roll Students.

WCHS FCCLA students created dog chew toys out of old T-shirts. Completed chew toys will be donated to the Best Friends Humane Society during the upcoming school-wide donation drive.  What a great idea! Good job, FCCLA students! The Math League is going strong at WCHS. The top scorers for the October Georgia Math league test were: Jessica Lane (winner), Reese Hancock, Shermor Touze, Ashley Whitman, Larry Adams, Kasey Black, and Day Story. The top scorers for the November Georgia Math league test were: Justin Hamilton (winner), Reese Hancock, and Jordan Luster.

Source: WCSD Web Page, WCSD Facebook Page & The Martin News