TOM SMITH, CO-DIRECTOR
816 4th Street
Three Rivers, MI  49093

269-858-8305​




FAMILY  ACTIVITIES
JULY/AUGUST 2021 GRANGE NEWS

This article is going to be a little different from how I usually do it. So bear with me.

​There are three parts to this, and then some feelings I’d like to express.

​Part 1. A couple years ago, I became a Golden Sheaf (50 year) member of the Grange. Yes, a proud moment for me, and then I remembered both of my parents, one grandmother and one great grandmother also belonged 50+ years. And ours is a five generation Grange family going back to the 1870’s. Ok, so I am bragging a little but there must be a reason why multi-generation families and long-time members hold their membership. The easiest answer is fellowship. As a Grange kid I thought it was pretty cool to have so many 
grandparents in that white building all at one time.

​Part 2. Just a few months ago at our Pomona we honored a long time (70 year) member for his service. We 
gave him a framed certificate, a boutonniere, a beautiful cake and had a special toast to Bob Latterner. I’m so glad we did this for him as he passed away in May. What if we had waited? For service like that you need to be recognized and saluted.

​Part 3. One of our members moved out of state a few years ago, but kept her Michigan Grange membership. She has belonged 60 years and going strong. To recognize her service was a challenge. She wouldn’t be 
coming back to Michigan, and us taking a group field trip to Oklahoma City wasn’t going to happen. But,
with a lot of creativity and coordination we pulled it off. The seal for 60 years was sent to OK, a beautiful pin, ordered from MI and shipped from CA to OK and with the help of a new Grange friend, a dozen red roses were ordered. Yvonne Merrit, Communication Director for the OK State Grange made the local arrangements.  With all this, and hundreds of miles apart we were able to honor Virginia Buel for 60 years of membership.  From all reports, she was thrilled, surprised and grateful to her Grange Brothers and Sisters for remembering her.

​Now comes my feelings. Many Granges in Michigan have been lax in membership recognition. It’s not 
that hard (or expensive) to see that our members are recognized in their Granges. In our State we even have pins for 10 years of membership.
I don’t know in your Grange who could arrange this. The Secretary should have the number of years, the Lecturer could make the presentation part of the program, and Family Activities could take care of refreshments. Another reason to have a piece of cake, a scoop of ice cream and a warm handshake for the honorees.

​One last thought, if we can’t say thank you to honor our long-time members, how well are we treating new 
members? Everyone likes to be appreciated and it isn’t hard or costly to say “Thank you for your dedication!” Now that I’m done with the soap box and down from the pulpit. Please think about this.

​We can do better!

​Don’t forget the Convention in Bay City is coming up quickly, let’s do that final push to get more entries in 
all of our contests.

​​Till next time, Happy Granging!
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER 2021 GRANGE NEWS

By the time you receive this issue of the Grange News, our annual session is just weeks away. We got a lot done last year in one day, but it will be good to get back to a more traditional format.
With that, it means all contests for Family Activities are on go, and we’d love to have tables filled with the talents of our Michigan Grangers. Check your program books for all the details.

​As we have done for many years, we’ve tried to have some sort of collection by our members (like mittens, 
food stuffs, etc.) and 2021 is no exception. We have contacted the Bay County Humane Society to see what needs they might have.
Here is the list of items they are always in need of:
  • Grain free wet cat food
  • Purina dry cat food
  • Grain free dog food
  • Germicidal bleach
  • Pet carriers
  • Puppy pads
  • Collars and leashes
  • Small paper plates
  • Cat litter
  • Paper towels
  • Cat and dog toys
The lady I talked to was really glad we thought of them for our annual project. She also said she would try to set up a “Photo Op” to highlight the Grange and also the work they do. This isn’t something just for delegates. ALL Grangers are welcome to help out, just send the articles with your delegates. I’m guessing it’s been a long time since there was any Grange presence or mention in Bay County. Let’s show them the caring and giving nature of our members as we strive to help others. Who knows? This might be the seed for Grange renewal in Bay County! (If you would like to send a monetary donation send checks made out to “Bay County Humane Society, to Michigan State Grange, 404 S. Oak Street, Durand, MI 48429. )
Back-To-School: Tips for Keeping Your Kid Healthy
This year, as your kids reconnect with the classroom, either in person or virtually you can help them ward off sniffles, tummy aches and the bigger stuff, like flu, so they can make the most of day one-to summer break.
When it comes to keeping your kids healthy is school, the key is preparation. That means teaching them a few tricks at home, packing their backpacks with the tolls they’ll need—and by giving them a literal shot in the arm.
1.  Vaccinate, Vaccinate, and Did we Mention Vaccinate?
If the pandemic put a pause on your family’s well-visits, here’s your reminder to schedule them—especially before your child heads back to the classroom
After age 4, your child should see their pediatrician each year for a well-visit. Along with checking your child’s over all health, your pediatrician will make sure they’re up to date on necessary vaccines. You can even opt for extras that are like a shield for kids entering classrooms where, let’s face it, surfaces can get germ-y.

​Vaccines are the best way to protect your child against potentially serious diseases, like measles, polio and 
COVID-19. Make sure your child has all the immunizations they need. And if they’re 12 or older, we’re recommending getting the COVID-19 vaccine this year.

​2. Teach Good Hand washing Techniques
Frequent hand washing is one of our best defenses against getting sick—from pink eye to COVID-19 So, teach your kids good hand hygiene habits. And, if they’re young, wash with them a few times to be sure they’re doing it the right way. 

​Touching a surface and then touching their face, 
mouth, nose or eyes is the most common way kids encounter the germs that make them sick. So, encourage them to wash often and wash well.
3. Stock up on Hand Sanitizers
While washing hands with soap and warm water is the best way to combat the germs that can make us sick, it may not always be possible for your child to hit the sink. For those times, using a hand sanitizer with at least 60% alcohol is a great solution.

One way to increase the odds your kid actually ​uses their sanitizer? Take them shopping with you. With so much fun packaging—and kid friendly scents—available, you’re sure to find one they might actually like showing off and squirting on.

​​
Make sure the sanitizer doesn’t contain methanol, as per FDA guidelines.
4. Cough and Sneeze Like Dracula
Teach your child to cough and sneeze into their bent elbow instead of their hands. Teach them to cough into their chicken wing. The position looks a lot like Dracula pulling his cape across his face, which makes it fun and easy to remember, especially with Halloween in the fall. This practice will keep germs off their hands and makes it less likely that they’ll spread to another child or a surface that everyone touches.
5. Early Detection of Other Illnesses will be Key
Some conditions—like the ones below—are more common among kids than adults. Keeping these nuisances top-of-mind lets you watch for signs and intervene early.
  • Head lice: Lice can cause an itchy scalp, red bumps on the head and neck, irritability, difficulty sleeping
  • and white particles (lice eggs) in the hair.
  • Hand-foot-mouth disease: This condition can cause sores in the mouth and blisters on the hands and feet.
  • Fifty disease: Also called “slapped cheek syndrome,’ Fifth disease causes a rash on the cheeks and may be accompanied by a low-grade fever.
  • Pink eye: Pink eye causes the whites of the eyes to become pink or red, often with watery green or white discharge. The infected eye may be itchy or painful.
These illnesses can cause a lot of discomfort. Some can be treated at home with over-the-county treatments, while some require prescriptions.
6. Know When to Just Keep Them Home
You and your child followed the hints—but they still catch something. While it’s always a good idea to keep your child home from school if they aren’t feeling well, it’s especially important as COVID-9 (and its variants) are still spreading. If your child is sick keeping them home not only allows them to recover, but also keeps them from spreading germs to others.
As a general rule of thumb, keep them home if they:
Run a fever —Have a cough —vomit more than once —have frequent bouts of diarrhea (more than 3 loose stools in 24 hours) — complain of joint pain or muscle aches —complain of chills or shaking shivers — have an unexplained rash — are unable to eat and drink normally — are unable to concentrate on schoolwork due to not feeling well.
When in doubt, it’s probably best to err on the side of caution and keep your child home. And don’t be afraid to call a pediatrician for advice.
BARBARA JOHNSTON​, CO-DIRECTOR
2028 Robbins Road
​Tipton, MI 49287

​Tel: 517-431-2546

Email: tnbjohnston@pc.com​