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Sharing our love during the holiday season

Palm Gardens The Bingo Bros collecting canned foord for Loaves and Fishes webBy Ruth Filz
Palm Gardens RV Park

“It’s not how much we give, but how much love we put into giving” Mother Teresa.

These words seem the way residents of Palm Gardens RV Park in Harlingen live their lives, but even more so during the holidays. Residents find fun ways to give to others. When our Bingo Bros were looking for ways to make our Tuesday night Bingo games more fun, they also hit on an idea to help others. If you brought a non-perishable item to one of our recent Bingo games, you received an extra card and Loaves and Fishes received items to add to their food pantry. Loaves and Fishes has been around since 1991 when they recognized the need for assisting families in Harlingen and Upper Cameron County and started the local food pantry. They are part of the Feeding America Nationwide Network which distributes 4.3 billion meals each year.

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Casa Del Valle celebrates the gift of giving

2023 christmas 3 webSubmitted by Judy Haken, Activity Director

Everyone at Casa Del Valley knows Christmas is in the air when the Giving Tree goes up in the front office. Decorated with tags inscribed with names, gender and gift information, residents can choose a tag (or two) from the tree. They then purchase a gift and return the wrapped gift to be placed under the Giving Tree for distribution just before Christmas.

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New Year’s Eve celebrations in the Valley

Just about every park has something special for New Year’s Eve. Many have special entertainment lined up with a dinner. So many of these parks sell out of tickets weeks before New Year’s Eve. So if you didn’t get a ticket in time and are still looking for things to do, there are a few cities having some celebrations you can join in on.

As always, South Padre Island puts on good fireworks show. New Year’s Eve is just a little different, with a bigger show to celebrate the ringing of a new year. Fireworks start at 9:15 p.m. There are celebrations throughout the island at several locations too.

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Park residents enjoy Christmas caroling

411476352 10161456210097146 7979046441620630582 n webResidents enjoyed Christmas Caroling at Victoria Palms RV and Mobile Home Park recently. The musicians had a decked out extended golf cart, while carolers rode on their bikes or golf carts around the park, stopping at residents’ home to bring them Christmas cheer through music.411464549 10161456209897146 5735002127417099509 n web

Soar into 2024 with a First Day Hike

20170415 Palmetto State Park 16 webAUSTIN— As the year ends, so does Texas State Parks’ Centennial Celebration, but the fun doesn’t stop when the clock strikes midnight. Kick off your resolution to explore the outdoors in 2024 with a First Day Hike at a state park, which will host ranger-guided and self-guided walks, bike rides, paddling trips and polar plunges in honor of the national initiative aimed at getting people outdoors.

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Setting your poinsettias up for success

20211202 BCMS Poinsettia Sale RR 0044 webFrom Texas A&M AgriLife Horticulturists

Poinsettias and their classic red and white holiday color will soon be abundant in homes, grocery stores and nurseries. If you want your poinsettia plants to last throughout the holiday season, here are some pointers to help keep your plants happy.

These gorgeous holiday plants, native to Mexico, are the No. 2 dollar-valued potted plant in the U.S. behind orchids. McKinley said poinsettias were introduced domestically by Joel Poinsett in the 1800s and have since been bred to maximize the colors and varieties of the plant.

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Reverse Advent Calendar exceeds expectations

Reverse Advent DSC 1039 webBy Herb Moering

The idea of a “Reverse Advent Calendar” food project became a spectacular success and more than Rick Anderson expected, when he presented it to residents of Mission Bell RV Resort last month.

Anderson, who with his wife, Karen, have been wintering at Mission Bell since 2005-06, said a park resident, Daleen Markel, mentioned the Reverse Advent Calendar, which Anderson decided to offer to park residents. The idea is to purchase a food item each day of the Advent season starting December 1.

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December 20, 2023 - Rina's Ramblings

I can’t believe Christmas is less than a week away. The year has sure gone by fast. The season has gone by quickly as well. We really only have three months left before you start leaving us once again. We’ll soon be celebrating a new year as well.

This past week we made sure to get our tamales for Christmas and we already have our ham for Christmas Eve. We still have just a little bit more shopping to do including some gag gifts for a White Elephant gift exchange with some close friends. I am really looking forward to a fun evening there.

Our family has held serious, and not so serious, White Elephant gift exchanges for Christmas several times. We would take turns drawing names or doing the White Elephant game on one side of the family. We did it once on my husband’s side of the family too. It always turns out to be tons of fun.

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Christmas traditions we love

Firefly traditional christmas tree with decorations 39913 webWe are quite traditional in our family. And I bet that you too have traditions. In my family, my children just won’t let me take the easy way out. It is no trouble to pull out the artificial tree still decorated with strings of lights and glittery ornaments. Well, not in my family – my children won’t let me do it the easy way.

The tree has to be real, and the house has to smell like Christmas.

Christmas Eve begins with the traditional homemade chili and delicious tamales. The tamales have become my responsibility. This year, I decided to try a different company – but which one? I had no idea where to begin, so I turned to the experts – my Mexican friends who know much more about tamales than I. After I narrowed down the recommendations to the top two, it was time to sample and make the final decision.

Now the only way to make that decision was to sample the goods. For several days, we were eating tamales for breakfast, lunch, and dinner as we enjoyed the different flavors of cream cheese and jalapenos, chicken and cheese, pork, and spicy pork. Oh yum – Were they good!

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Darris and Judy Hable honored

Darris Hable 353 n webDarris and Judy Hable were honored on Tuesday, December 12 at the Welcome Winter Texan Celebration in Progreso, Mexico. The couple was presented with the Key to the City, the first time it has been done in several years. The couple was also named Ambassadors to the Winter Texans. In March, the couple was named King and Queen during the city’s Tourist Day where they have a big celebration to thank the Winter Texan visitors that visit.