Concentrating on saying thanks

This is the week of Thanksgiving. Can you imagine it? The year is almost gone, with two big holidays sandwiched in before Jan. 1 rolls around again.

Last week, I was concentrating on the first part of the turkey holiday – the word “thanks.” Do we do it enough or show how much a person is important to us? I am a big offender of not saying thanks when I should – something I have to work on for the new year.

I bought a Thanksgiving card to send to a dear friend who sends “just because cards” to me all the time. And since she is a fun loving person I know that she will laugh at this greeting.

The front shows a distressed turkey doing a dramatic “gobble gobble.” It reads “If wishes were turkeys, you’d sure get a shock, cause instead of just one, here’s a whole noisy flock.”

There are eight talking turkeys running about on the inside. One says, “Did you see the gravy bowl last year?” Another answers, “No, what was the score?” The third one proclaims, “Turkeys 17-Chickens zilch.” Another wants to know if feathers make her look fat. The answer from her mate is “No, they totally go with your chin wobble thing.”

An angry turkey screams “I hate Thanksgiving…it is so fowl.” “Wish for steak, wish for steak” is the frantic urging of another. The last, dressed in a pirate hat and holding a sword, exclaims “Halloween’s my favorite holiday!”


The 4-H organization is one I have always been thankful for. They do many community projects to say thanks for those who believe in them.

For instance, the Warren Ridge Wranglers collected gently used Barbie dolls this summer to donate to the Buckhorn Buckshots 4-H Club in Harrison County.

Those members will bring new life to the dolls that have been around for many years. They donated them to the Children’s Pediatric Center at Cleveland Clinic. The group also donated first aid supplies to 4-H Camp Piedmont.

The Ridge Hoppers 4-H Club stitched up 72 nursery rhyme print or colorful design pillow cases to be donated to children’s hospitals in Pittsburgh. Jordan Vance was one of the most active members in putting out pillowcases.

The Barshoe Wranglers 4-H Club built a horse mounting station before the Jefferson County Fair and enlisted the help of Buckeye Mechanical Contracting Inc. to help with putting up a hitching post between barns 1 and 2 at the fair. Robert Hickle, a past 4-H member and junior fair king, is with the contracting company. The club also set up an old-time farm equipment display at the horse barn at fair time. A junior and senior groom and clean team won first place and went on to state competition.

The Purple Circle 4-H Club started spring by taking part in an East Springfield Memorial Day parade, cleaning up a local cemetery, planting flowers on the Jefferson County Fairgrounds to win a second-place award, painting the cow barns, decorating six trash barrels with purple hand prints and colorful paint splashes, hearing a safety talk by the sheriff, caroling at a local nursing home, purchasing gifts for Urban Mission for Christmas and collecting canned goods for a food pantry.

Liberty Gals and Guys 4-H constructs Valentines for Veterans, makes get well baskets for shut- ins in the New Alexandria area and conducts clean- ups in the village. Members learn how to care for an injured pet and always decorate a prize-winning float for the Jefferson County Fair grand parade. They are celebrating their 75th year in existence.


Has anyone else ever grabbed the wrong coat at a meeting or party when there are three or four black leather jackets that all resemble one another?

This happened to me at the Smithfield United Methodist Women’s group event. There were three of the same looking coats on the table, and I picked up one I thought was mine, shoved my arms in the sleeves and left for my car.

I was talking to Liz Matthews on my way out and suddenly we heard a shout to Liz. It was Betty Ruttencutter with a coat that did not belong to her. It looked much the same but had a set of car keys she did not recognize in the pocket.

I kept walking to my car as she had addressed Liz. When I got there, I realized the car keys I fished out of the pocket were not for my car, nor was it my coat. I was the guilty culprit who took the wrong one. That is my blunder for this week.

Last week I was rushing up the steps to the newsroom as I couldn’t seem to get all the cookbook stuff together as planned. I looked up when I heard someone coming down the staircase. At that moment, I lost my footing and practically fell in front of Eddie Wesolowski from Creative Services.

At his question of “Are you hurt?” I replied, “No, just embarrassed.”

So now I can be thankful that I didn’t get hurt badly.

Have a great Thanksgiving.

(McCoy, a resident of Smithfield, is a staff columnist and food editor for the Herald-Star and The Weirton Daily Times. She can be contacted at