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No feeding of calves at Phillips Farms this year, but the violin is playing

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Posted: Thursday, October 18, 2012 12:00 am

The first weekend of the Phillips Farms Pumpkin Patch was a rousing success, according to Don P, with lots of children and lots of parents. The pirate caves, made out of hay bales were an instant delight, as were several chickens which sat on the fence and people-watched.

The ram had his admirers also, but because of a complaint about flies, Animal Control decided that the baby calf, which Don was bottle-feeding, had to go back to the dairy. Too bad; children have been watching calves being bottle-fed at the Patch for 40 years. However, the Lodi Community Band will be playing on Sunday, Oct. 21, around noon or so.

Something else has been added to the cafe: a new employee named Sarah who plays the violin. Don has asked her to wander around the tables from time to time, serenading the customers. Her rendition of "Turkey in the Straw" at the Patch was a delight, especially as there was a live turkey enjoying the music, too!


Made a mistake in the last column about the desk given to the Friends of the Library bookstore. Stacey is Bud Sullivan's daughter; Stephanie, his granddaughter. I had the wrong name with the wrong relative! But I think it's safe to assume that the desk came from the generosity of both, as did the many books from Bud's personal library. And their generosity has gone further: there is a great bookcase now in the Library Foundation office.

I should remember the saying, "Accuracy is truth sharpened to a fine point"! This axiom is never so important as reporting or relaying news.


It is nice to be approved by one's children. This from Second Daughter after my first October column: "I loved the final quote — I think kindness is what we sorely lack in this divided and divisive and doctrinaire world. It's deeper than charity, less self-centered than morality, and gentler than ethics; a pillow for the weary and a respite for the driven. Above all things, I think it is worth the effort to aspire to."

And in something of the same vein, here is part of an email sent to me by a good friend:

During WWII, Major Wellesley Tudor Pole, an English author, businessman, spiritualist and World War I veteran, campaigned to institute a minute of daily prayer or meditation. With the support of Sir Winston Churchill and King George VI, he instituted the Silent Minute each night when Big Ben struck 9 p.m., asking the British people to drop what they were doing for one minute and collectively pray for the safety of England, its soldiers and its people, and for peace. The Big Ben Silent Minute became an inspiration for the British people, and was adopted by other Allied countries, including the United States.

There is now a group of people organizing this same thing here in the United States. This country and its citizens need prayer now more than ever. If you would like to participate, each evening at 6 p.m. Pacific time stop whatever you are doing and spend one minute praying for the safety of the United States, our troops, our citizens; for peace in the world; for the upcoming election; that the Constitution will remain the basis for the laws governing our land; and that faith and love will grow in our country. (I have generalized some terms.)

Someone said that if people really understood the full extent of the power we have available through prayer, we might be speechless. Our prayers are the most powerful asset we have.

Amen to that — and amen to anything that will shut up so much of the mindless babbling that seems to be going on incessantly! And so much of it hateful, at that.


For those who like a convivial meal, here are two new opportunities. The American Legion is adding a pancake breakfast for the community from 8 to 11 a.m. every first Sunday of the month, in addition to the omelet breakfast on the third Sunday morning. The price is the same for both: $6.

And St. John's Episcopal Church is continuing its Soul Kitchen community dinner from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on the fourth Friday of each month. It's open to anyone who wants to come, and there is no charge. Of course, donations will be appreciated.


And one to end with: What did the alien say to the gardener? Take me to your weeder. (Groan!)

Gwin Paden of Lodi is a writer and retired teacher. She can be reached at

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