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Finally, Spring is here, at least by the calendar, if not the weather. We had spring-like weather back in January, but along with that came at least 14 straight days when the sun didn't shine. Even February had less sun than normal. The old saying, "The first day of spring is not necessarily the first spring day!" certainly rings true, but we are ever hopeful; after all, Easter is only two weeks away.

Here is a term you may not have heard before, brumation. Certainly, I don't recall seeing it, with all the reading on nature I do. Brumation refers to dormancy undergone by ectothermic "cold-blooded" animals (frogs, turtles and some snakes), while hibernation refers to dormancy undergone by endothermic (bears, groundhogs etc.) "warm-blooded" animals. Animals like reptiles and amphibians brumate, while mammals (and some birds) hibernate.

Some birthdays to celebrate this week include Eleanor Bagshaw, nee Beare. Her parents were Gord and Doreen, her brothers are Ron and David. Eleanor had some health issues a while ago but seems to be in better health now. John Bakelaar also had a birthday. Although they live in Kitchener now, they keep in touch with their Uxbridge friends, and both he and Wilma are still quite active.

Birthday greetings to Leslie Barr Joosten Forbes, a great musical talent now using it for a different community, directing choirs, playing in concerts and with bands along with her husband, Campbell. Mel Tindall, a lifelong Zephyr/Sandford area resident and farmer/drover, also celebrated with his granddaughters.

Happy birthday to Lynn Gibson. The Gibsons live on Feasby Road along with their two daughters and one son, all pursuing exciting careers. Birthday wishes also went out to Jim Phoenix, who runs a farm nearby. Our condolences to his wife, Cathy and the family on the passing of her mother, Helen Wilson. It was estimated that at her Celebration of Life, some 300 people attended. Big Irish birthday wishes also to Pat Molloy, whose birthday appropriately falls on March 17th.

The Gates family moved from Sandford many years ago now, but they, too, keep in touch, and Rita was one of those who enjoyed another birthday celebration. They live by a large river and have been fortunate to have a number of trumpeter swans stop by, to feed and rest both spring and fall. Donna Webster is a lifelong member of the Uxbridge community and married Hank, also a lifelong resident, with both contributing greatly to the community, over the years.

Some people have been holidaying. Les and Erin Smith have been in the USA, from Colorado to Illinois, where they just had to tour the John Deere factory and the World's largest truck stop, in Iowa. They had a great time, as were the Arkell family in Ottawa, until on the trip home, they had a serious accident, and all three ended up in hospital. Fortunately, none were seriously injured, the most serious being mother Andrea with a broken collarbone. From looking at the car, one would say they were blessed to come out of it less seriously injured.

The Lucy Maud Montgomery Facebook page reminded us writer/director Sarah Polley, a winner at the Oscars last week, had played the part of Sara Stanley in Sullivan Entertainment's "Road to Avonlea," which was shot just south of Uxbridge on the 6th concession. Maybe she even visited Uxbridge town; who knows now? Just recently, I read there were some hard feelings about that movie because an agreement had been made that the set would become the property of the township, but instead, it was taken down and away.

Carolyn Hicken reminds us the Uxbridge Music Scholarship Trust is now up for grabs. If you are under 25 and intend to take or are taking a music course post-secondary, you are eligible to apply. To find out more, go to the website at: to find out more details.

The "Foster at the Foster" concert is happening on April 15th, at 2 p.m. and 7 p.m., and on the 16th, at 2 p.m. Watch for poster and Facebook ads on how to get your tickets. This features four greatly talented young Uxbridge ladies and the talented Jane Loewen, a very well-known musician. Remember, Friday Night at the Foster begins on May 5th with the Ferrisport Jazz group.

The Star reported on the charging of Charles Mustard in the murder of Barbara Brodkin. While I had read about this investigation before, there were some interesting details. Charles Mustard was the son of Dr. William Mustard, a pioneer in heart surgery on babies and other life-altering procedures. What does that have to do with us? Dr. Mustard's ancestors came from Sandford, There are still some distinguished farmers of the family close by, and two Mustard brothers actually were the very first owners of my farm on Sandford Road.

Zephyr United Church's guest minister Rev. Wayne Reed led a very interesting worship service with the help of Ruth Baker and Alayna and their beautiful music. Following the service, there was a special birthday party to commemorate the 94th birthday of Zelda Stentiford and the 95th birthday of Wes Botham. It was great to see a few visitors in attendance to pay tribute to these wonderful people.

Next week Laura Kay will again be with us, followed in April, but Carol O'Neil and Rev. Bill Frits will be alternating Sundays. Of course, we start the month with Palm Sunday and Easter Sunday. Join us at 10 a.m. at Sandford United Church.

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