Around Town January 2016
WOODLANDS ELITE CHEER DONATES MORE THAN 600 POUNDS OF FOOD TO INTERFAITH FOOD PANTRY
Cheerleaders from Woodlands Elite Cheer collected more than six hundred pounds of food for Interfaith’s Food Pantry. “I love giving to Interfaith and it is a very important organization to me. It makes me happy that people can have a happy holiday because of something I did,” said cheerleader, Natalie Slay.
THE WOODLANDS SHOW CHORUS PRESENTS RAFFLE PRIZE DURING HOLIDAY SHOW
The Woodlands Show Chorus recently presented its very successful holiday show “Take a Ride on The Woodlands Express.” A beautiful, queen-size quilt was made by two chorus members, Paula Collins and Judy Davidson, was raffled and won by Debbie Culp, who lives in the Houston area. “What a wonderful surprise,” Debbie said. “I never dreamed I would actually win. I was just supporting the chorus.” The chorus will use the funds for education, competition and community involvement. Currently, TWSC is in the planning stage to offer free vocal instruction to women in the area beginning the end of January.
This award-winning a cappella chorus and quartets are made up of over 70 female singers, from all ages and walks of life that love harmony and entertaining. They earned the honor of competing against other choruses from all over the world at Sweet Adelines International in Baltimore in 2014. They will compete in Las Vegas this year as the best SAI chorus in south Texas and all of Louisiana, Arkansas, Mississippi and Alabama, a distinction they won this past spring. Visit TheWoodlandsShowChorus.org for more information.
The pyramid is the cover photo of Kerry’s eBook.
WOODLANDS AUTHOR KERRY DUNCAN PUBLISHES TRAVEL MEMOIR, LETTERS FROM CAIRO
Kerry Duncan is a writer from The Woodlands who recently published a memoir on Kindle Books. The eBook is an alternately humorous and poignant tale of her two years living in Cairo, Egypt, as an expatriate during the second Gulf War from 2002 to 2004. It is a very personal story about her struggle to live in a third world, unstable country while battling with her own health. A portion of the book’s preface follows:
“The year 2002 started off like any other New Year in Scotland. Three days later I broke a mirror. I am not really superstitious but within 13 days my mum had died followed by our last 2 remaining cats. It felt ominous. Instead of dealing with my grief I asked my husband to request an international transfer from his job and he did so in May. In November I was living in Cairo, Egypt. In December I needed to see a psychiatrist.
“Letters from Cairo relates my hilarious, painful, joyful and exciting two years in Egypt. As the title suggests, it is interspersed with letters from Cairo. The letters reflect my amusement, puzzlement and pleasure of living in an alien culture. The other text relates both the darker and more ordinary aspects of living there, which at times was too painful to put in a letter. It was a particularly interesting time to live in an Islamic culture, post Sept. 11. The second Gulf war in 2003 was just the icing on the cake.”
Duncan goes on to say, “They say that travel broadens the mind, and I suspect this journey both broadened and narrowed mine. I wrote this book a year after we left Egypt and have finally edited to my satisfaction 10 years later. Time will mellow the adventure of this experience and my memories will blunt and round the tale. I want you to share it with me while it is fresh and real. Enjoy.”
The book is available on Kindle from Amazon for $4.49 or less. The title is Letters from Cairo – this is a memoir not a travelogue, by Kerry Duncan. A free app is available by clicking on the book, which allows you to download it on any device including an iPad or computer. Kerry also regularly blogs on her WordPress site, chattykerry.wordpress.com. There you can read her travelogues from Istanbul to Waco, anecdotes on day-to-day life in Texas and view some of her amazing photographs. Kerry writes occasional articles for The Woodlands Lifestyles and Homes.
“FAMILIES READING EVERY DAY”
Montgomery County United Way and Texas A&M AgriLife Extension value the role families play in their children’s education. They have teamed up to present “Families Reading Every Day” or F.R.E.D. for short. Their goal is to promote reading as a family activity as well as a way for parents, siblings and other family members to take on a more active role in their child’s education.
F.R.E.D. volunteer reading opportunities happen twice a year – once in the spring and again in the fall. This November, volunteers ranging from working professionals to corporate retirees to prominent members of the community gathered to visit three early childhood education centers to read aloud to the children. Armed with colorful books, certificates and give away prizes, the volunteers were greeted with happy smiles, hugs and laughter as they engaged children and demonstrated the joy of reading.
Amy Ressler with Texas A&M AgriLife Extension coordinates the volunteer effort along with Karen Howard, education director at Montgomery County United Way. Lone Star Trails Community of Girl Scouts and the local VFW collected books, and each child was able to go home with a book to start their at-home F.R.E.D. project. With the incentives United Way offered, families were motivated to participate in the project.
Overall, this project is reaching about 350 families in Montgomery County. For more information about the project and other MCUW initiatives, visit MCUW.org.