H appy November! The holiday season is just around the corner. Thanksgiving signals the beginning of the end of the year and is cause for celebration — unless you’re a turkey, that is.
Most of us have this holiday all figured out by now. The turkey, stuffing, football games and Macy’s Thanksgiving Day Parade are all part of my own Thanksgiving Day routine. I have a small family, consisting only of my mom, dad, brother and myself. The four of us gather at my mom and dad’s house and spend the day eating, watching football and enjoying each other’s company. We talk and laugh about past family shenanigans and holiday memories and catch up on each other’s lives.
In the spirit of Thanksgiving and giving back, our cover story this month focuses on Janna Pfautz, Jane Luschen and Bettye Jo Thrash, three advocates with the Court Appointed Special Advocates (CASA) of Garland County, a nonprofit organization that trains community volunteers to serve as advocates for our community’s most severely abused, abandoned and neglected children. CASA serves children who have been removed from their homes and placed in foster care.
Also featured in this issue is community advocate Janice Davis. For the past 10 years Janice has organized and raised funds for a large Thanksgiving dinner held annually at the Historic Visitors Chapel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Hot Springs for those in need of a hot meal. This year she plans to cook 35 turkeys and 25 hams, along with dressing, greens, mashed potatoes, desserts and other Thanksgiving dishes.
This month’s HER Home story features Kringle’s in the Park, a newly opened retail store on Bathhouse Row that aims to provide a year-round Christmas experience for its guests, the only one of its kind in Hot Springs. In addition to selling Christmas-related items, owners Greg and Shawn Mabry said they plan to sell seasonal items for holidays such as St. Patrick’s Day and Easter, making it a one-stop shop for all of your holiday decorating needs.
We also spoke to Dr. John Downes, medical director of psychiatric services at Levi Hospital. As the holiday season approaches, stress levels rise, and while mental health issues are not necessarily more common during the holidays, people tend to notice them more, he said. Dr. Downes offers advice on handling depression, anxiousness and holiday stress in this month’s HER Health feature.
Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours.