On and Off The Mountain/Stephanie Grubert

We are at the end of our ropes. Winter is hanging on with a vengeance and the Polar Vortex is once again dipping far south in North America to cause problems for the US. The weather forecasts warned us that snow would return and daytime temperatures would remain below freezing. Let’s hope that we are really on the march to spring. On the calendar it is only 23 days away. Spring bulbs will soon push forth looking for the longer days and warmer temperatures. Four weeks on the calendar.

My granddaughter Maggie Dicus was born on the first day of spring in 2008 on March 21. This year the first day of spring is March 20 at 12:57 p. m. EDT. Yes, we will be observing Eastern Daylight Time beginning Sunday March 9. I love the early morning dawn. I always say I wake up with the chickens, even if there are none nearby. We are definitely moving toward the light.

The snow piles started to melt with the warmer temperatures and the heavy rain we had at the end of last week. Looking out into a gray day made darker by incessant rant is discouraging. So to will this end.

The spring teams are raring to go and some of the organizations that work year round on their projects are entering the final stretch.

The 2014 Relay for Life will be held on May 17, and May 18 at Crestwood High School. It will be the 12th Annual Relay event in Mountaintop. The goal of the Relay is to eliminate cancer as a major health problem and to turn it into a treatable disease.

Every family is touched by cancer. When I was growing up in the 50’s and 60’s we heard cancer and we thought that was the end. The past fifty years have seen great strides in treatment for all cancers including new drugs, surgical and medical protocols, and technology that aids in diagnostics. Cancer treatment in 2014 was science fiction way back when. And research and education goes on every day.

The Relay is about awareness too. Early screening for some cancers can save lives. Breast, colon, prostate are just a few of the success stories. We don’t know when or if we will have to face a cancer diagnosis, but having a watchful eye is always smart.

The Think Pink Relay team sponsors events all year round. I can’t list them all here, but I know the Ice House Pub sponsors a golf tournament in the fall with proceeds going to Think Pink. There are lots of things going on every week in our busy little town.

We are creeping up into the first day of Lent next week on March 5. The dates this year for Lent and Easter are the latest they can be. March is traditionally a transition month with the weather and Lent will serve as the same. Pray and wait and all will be good.

I look forward to spring as a time of renewal with my exercise plans and my new garden. It is still February but the seeds are on display at local outlets an when the time is right they will be sown. Farmers plan for year round diligence and so do I. The task is accomplished over weeks and months.

Downton Abbey, one of my favorite TV shows, has concluded its fourth season. It is all make believe, but the actors playing the characters really do bring home the story based on history. Even the wealthy have their financial challenges in early 20th Century England and we haven’t even gotten to the Great Depression.TVand movies have given us escapist joy for the last hundred years. Now we can stream it to our iPads, iPhones and Apple TV for convenience. I am all in on technology.