It’s homecoming time at work for me.

We have a new kitchen manager and it is someone I use to work for. Karen Leach is back in the food business after she and her husband Pat, sold PK’s in Benedict. I was thrilled to see her one day when I was washing the student tables at the Middle School. When she asked for my boss, I put two and two together and realized she might be working for us. Turns out — she is! She is my new boss at the Middle School and I am so glad to have her there. My big boss has been spending the majority of her time at our school although she supervises all the school kitchens. Once Karen is all trained, Betty, my supervisor, will be able to spend time at the other two schools. Now, we are at full staff and we can make future plans. I am so impressed with how quickly she is catching on with her new routine and learning our menus plus the computer program. She will be great!

I went to a family wedding in Omaha this weekend and it was nice. My cousin Corey’s son married a very lovely woman. It was so good to see my cousins. We got all caught up on what’s going on with their families. My aunt and uncle were there too. It’s sad that my Uncle Joe and his wife Maxine, plus my mom, are the last of their family. My aunt and uncle are so nice. They split their time between Omaha and Palm Springs, so we caught them when they were here. Their kids, my cousins, are close to my age and while their son Jeff lives in Omaha, his sisters live in Chicago and Houston. They usually get into town a few times a year and they will both be here for Thanksgiving so I hope I can catch up with them when they are in town.

Speaking of Thanksgiving, my sister is once again hosting this year. She has the room for all of us and her husband, my brother-in-law Mike, takes care of the turkey. He does a great job with it. My two brothers should be in town too and it is so much fun when we all get together. It is very sad that my dad is not there and his birthday is coming up soon. We have a new generation starting with my nephew and his wife having a beautiful son, and my niece is expecting twins in April. It’s a very exciting time for us all. I just wish my dad could meet his new great-grandchildren, but I am sure he is here.

This weekend, I agreed to pick up my mom and take her to the wedding. While she was OK, she complained because the warehouse site was way downtown and she complained about everything on the way. Once we found the place, she turned out to be fine. I did hand her off to my sister to take home since I had to get back for some catering. I found out the next day that my brother and his family from Denver did a surprise visit back to Omaha for a birthday visit for my sister-in-law’s dad’s birthday. Had I known they were coming in, I would have made plans to spend the night. They will be back for Thanksgiving though.

Saturday, Nov. 30, is the Friends of the Library’s annual Soup Sale! Last year, thanks to the sale and a generous donation by one of our members, we made over $1,800 for the library! This year we will feature a few new things at the sale. The Smokie Lassies will have a bake sale and Kerri Naber will once again have her amazing book foldings and clippings. The library staff have been storing cookbooks for us for a while and we plan to sell them during the sale. So if you have any cookbooks you are done with and want to donate them to the sale, drop them off at the library and we will save them for the sale.

So the Soup Sale is simple. Members of the Friends of the Library make homemade delicious soup, freeze them, and bring them to our sale in one-quart containers. We sell them and all of the proceeds go to allow the library to do non-budgeted programs. It’s our most popular fundraiser we do each year and the soups go pretty fast. We do allow members of the Friends of the Library to pre-order up to three quarts of soup. We sack it up and they can stop in any time to get their quarts. Each year we are sold out within two hours, so if you want soups make sure you get in early. We will have the sale in the library from 10 a.m. until we sell out.

Don’t forget the other sales going on that day too. The Chamber’s Shop Small Saturday will be going on at the same time, so it’s a great opportunity to support all the locally-owned business who provide so much to local projects. You don’t get that kind of support from the big box stores! Saturday, Nov. 30 will be big. I hope you get a chance to support our local businesses that day (and every day) and hope you’ll be there for our big sale!

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