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Girl Talk
The pressures of the Christmas wish list
By By Jill Meier
Challenger editor

December 12. 2013 9:24AM
The turkey, taters, stuffing and all its subsidiaries had been devoured and our tummies were more than full. The womenfolk had just wrapped up the dishes, while the men of the family found comfort in a variety of recliners and rocking chairs in the living room. It was a typical scene at the Meier family Thanksgiving.

Also typical is my annual ritual of quizzing the kids – my great-nieces and –nephews – on what’s on their Christmas wish lists. Unfortunately, one family had escaped before a second began the task of gathering up their coats and shoes in preparation for departure.

I’d heard through the “Facebook” vine that Carter, the oldest of the brood, had three items on his list this year: Minnesota Vikings football tickets, Vikings football trading cards and a baby brother. You see, Carter’s a big brother to two sisters, thus the call for a baby brother. I’m confident I can make good on one of his three wishes, and while I’d love to treat him to a Vikings game, Great-Aunt Jill’s pocketbook doesn’t stretch that far, and as for the baby brother, well, that’s a gift to be decided on by his mom and dad.

Makena’s ideas came swiftly: some sort of marker airbrush gadget, Legos and all colors of nail polish.

As for little Karly, her Christmas wish list consisted of “things for her baby,” Dora (the Explorer) stuff and big floor puzzles.

Once the first trio of kids fulfilled my Christmas gifts idea list, my attention turned to “Lil’ Jonnie.”

Much to my surprise, while I was quizzing Carter, Makena and Karly, the blue-eyed, blonde-haired Jonathon took refuge in a corner of the room. With his back turned to us and tears in his eyes, it was clear the pressure of having his Christmas wish list in place was simply too much.

“I … don’t … know … what … I … want,” he mustered through his tears.

It took a bit of explaining to a 5-year-old that, despite the fact he “couldn’t think of a thing” he wanted, there would surely be a present with his name on it from me at our family Christmas.

With all the pressures the Christmas season brings – decorating, shopping, baking, parties and more – who would’ve ever thought getting a simple Christmas wish list from a 5-year-old would be so complicated?
Community organization needs
With the change of seasons comes a change of new needs at the Brandon Area Food Pantry. Among the seasonable requests are hot chocolate mix, bottled juices, baking supplies (flour, sugar, baking powder and soda, chocolate chips, etc.), snack crackers, pizza sauce, Manwich, oatmeal (in canister).

While always appreciated, the Pantry has a large supply of canned goods in stock. Monetary donations are always appreciated.

Before donating, please check the expiration date, as expired food items cannot be distributed.

The BAFP is located at 406 Main Ave., and is open from 4 to 6 p.m. Tuesdays and Thursdays. To donate to the food pantry or for more information, call 582-7001.

The Brandon Lions Club also wants your aluminum cans. Proceeds from the sale of aluminum funds requests to the Club for vision and hearing impairment needs.

The Lions Club collection shed is located in the Sunshine Foods parking lot.

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