“When the seasons shift, even the subtle beginning, the scent of a promised change, I feel something stir inside me. Hopefulness? Gratitude? Openness? Whatever it is, it’s welcome.”
   ~ Kristin Armstrong

There are so many wonderful quotes on gratitude and thankfulness that it is hard to choose from among them:

“In ordinary life, we hardly realize that we receive a great deal more than we give, and that it is only with gratitude that life becomes rich.”
  ~ Dietrich Bonhoeffer

“Gratitude is when memory is stored in the heart and not in the mind.”
   ~ Lionel Hampton

“Sometimes we should express our gratitude for the small and simple things like the scent of the rain, the taste of your favorite food, or the sound of a loved one’s voice.”
   ~ Joseph B. Wirthlin

Some of my grateful moments are these: Driving by the two teenaged girls jogging down the road with their ponytails swaying in unison. The colony of seagulls widely spaced out on the field, strutting around in different directions and looking as though they forgot why they had come. The daily courtesy of a driver letting you into traffic.

So, the season of thanksgiving is upon us, but why should it be just a day – or a season?

About courses
Origami for the Holidays will be ending tomorrow, but it is another great example of how a bunch of strangers can get together and just have a good time. You would think they were all well acquainted beforehand. It’s the students, the topic at hand—and a terrific instructor in the person of Gail Martin. After a winter break, perhaps she can be persuaded to give another course in the spring.

French Conversation Circle (for those who are reasonably fluent) will not be held on Nov. 20. The last day for this class is Nov. 27 at 2:15 p.m. This course is not being offered during the winter since Alysse will be away, but it will hopefully return in the spring. Her students say she is really a special instructor and give her glowing reviews. Stay tuned after the winter, and check out our spring schedule, which will be out about Mar. 27.

Want to test the water? You are invited to come by to sit in on any class (at no charge) to see if you might like to join it. This is a good chance to meet the instructor, the other participants, and ask questions. Newcomers are always welcomed—everyone is really friendly. 

For more background, you can always visit the town website and click on the Senior Center tab for descriptions of all the course listings, as well as the three-month daily calendar. The winter schedule will be posted on Nov. 28.

The new winter schedule, which covers the months of December, January and February, will be inserted the next issue of The Charlotte News on Nov. 28. There will be the popular travelogues (Galapagos, Cuba II, Iceland), local history, an ancestry workshop, iPhone help, music performance, a new fiber-arts group, comedy, advice on hearing loss from a UVM audiologist and clinical professor, ongoing courses (of course) — and more, more, more.  

Events
On Sunday, Nov.18, from 12:30 p.m. – 2:30 p.m., Shape-Note Singing will be held in the Great Room. 

This traditional style of singing began in colonial New England and was featured in the movie Cold Mountain. It is a cappella, four-part harmony and has been called “full-body, shout-it-out singing.” (Unsurprisingly, there are no auditions.) Open to newcomers and experienced singers. Songbooks provided. Stop by to listen or sing, and leave whenever you wish. No fee.

In addition, on Sunday, Nov. 18, at 3:00 p.m., Chief Don Stevens, of the Nulhegan Abenaki Tribe, will give a talk on the teachings of the Native American Circle of Life. If you can, stop by beforehand to view the Abenaki tribal artifacts that are on display in the Center’s Great Room. (Note the best times for viewing in the box below.)

On Nov. 28, the Senior Center’s Annual Tree Trimming will take place at 1:00 p.m. in the Great Room after the Wednesday luncheon. Stop by and lend a hand to help make the Center more festive.

Art News
Continuing throughout the month is the November Art Exhibit of Native American artifacts and photography. Chief Don Stevens, of the Nulhegan Abenaki Tribe, is displaying artifacts both from the tribe and his own collection that include ceremonial dance staffs, bone needles, breast plates, gourds, contemporary saw paintings, jewelry, fur bags and more. Award-winning photographs by Don’s wife, Diane, enhance the exhibit. This spectacular display is not to be missed — it is truly museum quality. Kudos to everyone involved with hanging, and especially to Judy Tuttle, the Center’s volunteer art exhibit coordinator. Be sure to note the art viewing times in the box below.

Viewing Art Shows: Since the Center’s Great Room is utilized for many classes and events, the best times to see art shows in November are Tuesdays after 2:30 p.m., Wednesdays after 3:00 p.m., Thursdays and Fridays after 12:30 p.m. Call the Center during the week to check on Sunday availability. Note: With new classes, these times will change for the winter.

Openings and closings
The Senior Center will close on Nov. 21 after the Wednesday luncheon and will reopen on Monday, Nov. 26, at 9:00 a.m. We wish everyone a Happy Thanksgiving and safe travel.

Now that the time has changed, the dark is descending, and wintery weather is fast approaching, remember that the Senior Center follows the school closures of Champlain Valley School District (CVSD). You will find closings posted on local TV and radio stations, as well as on the CVSD website (under Delays & Closures).

Coming soon is our new website with information about the Senior Center—as well as answers to frequently asked questions, some history, a useful section on food and nutrition, volunteer opportunities and more. The official unveiling date and web address will be announced on Front Porch Forum  very soon. Many thanks to Susanna Kahn for her patience and technical help and to Susan Hyde for information gathering and coordinating the whole effort. It will continue to grow and evolve in the future.

Our new website is live. Check it out for with information about the Senior Center – as well as answers to frequently asked questions, some history, a useful section on food and nutrition, volunteer opportunities, and more. Many thanks to Susanna Kahn for technical help and patient advice, and to Susan Hyde for information gathering and coordinating the whole effort. It will continue to grow and evolve in the future. 

“Gratitude, warm, sincere, intense, when it takes possession of the bosom, fills the soul to overflowing and scarce leaves room for any other sentiment or thought.” 
   ~ John Quincy Adams

Charlotte Senior Center
(802) 425-6345