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It's 2023! Wow, will it be any better than 2022? Much of what made last year so bad is still around and not promising to disappear any time soon. We know so much more about what is happening around us and the world now than we did 50 years ago, which may be a good thing in many ways but not others.

There are things we can do as individuals to help make our lives and the lives of those around us better, but much of what we know is about things we cannot change, worrisome as they are. I guess those people who don't have computers may be happier because they know less about the world situation, but I don't think burying your head in the sand or acting like everything is wonderful is the way to go.

Since Christmas, things have quieted down, and not much has happened in the past week. I am sure it will pick up as organizations get into full swing again. It's nice to have a bit of a break, especially from all those lunches outs. But I love them, what better way to have a chat with friends and family?

I only have a couple of birthdays this week. First, my granddaughter, Charlene Jones, had one on January 3rd. When she was born, she was the New Year's baby of the year, and that was when maternity was still in Uxbridge. She is 19, finishing her university credits and has been accepted to Trent University.

Next is Nate Stewart. Nate turned 18 and is the son of Jay and Nic. He may also be heading to university this fall. He loves skiing with the family and has been a full member of the Legion Pipes and Drums for several years now.

Erin Smith also celebrated a bit bigger birthday. Erin lives in Sunderland with her husband, Les and their three kids. I am sure they had a big event planned for her birthday, another one of those "0" ones. A great big birthday wish to the incomparable Carol Gibson, who, at 88, looks 30 years younger at least and still plays for Bella Nove for practices and concerts. What a fabulous musician she is! Her late husband, Don, once told me she practices every day, which certainly shows. She was a concert pianist at one time and still is, even if it is just for us.

It was sad to learn that the Sandford Store was once more closing at the end of last year. I have lost count of how many owners there have been in the last number of years. I guess most people find it more convenient to go to Uxbridge or Newmarket or Mount Albert, where they can do their shopping and other business, and only go to the store for incidentals they run out of. That will not sustain a business. There has been an active store in Sandford since 1852.

It was with shock and some sadness that I saw the obituary for Herb Legard. Herb was a retired Staff Sergent of Durham Regional Police service and was 93 years old. Sure brought back memories. Herb and his wife Ina came to Uxbridge, probably in the mid-60s, and Herb was one of our police officers for a number of years. That was in the days when we had our own police force, and the officer and his family lived and worked and were part of the community. Herb and Ina were involved in a number of community activities, including the Red Cross.

Those were the day when the police officers walked the streets, and you could stop and chat and get to know them, and they got to know those they were serving. I don't know when the last time I saw a police officer around here not even in town. Herb and Ina were married 70 years and had two daughters, five grandchildren and 11 great-grandchildren. Herb's death was the way all police officers and others should be, not shot down on the streets in an ambush. Thanks for his many years of service to our neighbourhood.

Our sympathy also to the family and friends of Pauline Kydd, wife of the late Gordon Kydd. This family was also a long-time member of Uxbridge and involved in many community activities.

The weather has been pretty dark and dreary for the last couple of weeks. We got rid of the snow with the warmth and the rain but barely any sun, and what a treat Friday night to see the moon and stars again. You might be interested in the dates and names for the moon this year. January 6th-Wolf Moon, February 5th-Snow Moon; March 7th–Worm Moon; April 6th-Pink Moon; May 5th-Flower Moon; June 3rd- Strawberry Moon; July 3rd- Buck Moon; August 1st-Sturgeon Moon; August 30th-Blue Moon; September 29th-Harvest Moon; October 29th-Hunter Moon; November 27th-Beaver Moon; December 26th-Cold Moon. Let's hope that we get lots of clear nights to be able to see these lovely sights. Watch out for that Blue Moon!

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