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12/25/09 - NNHS Newsletter -

“The time draws near the birth of Christ: The moon is hid; the night is still;
The Christmas bells from hill to hill Answer each other in the mist

- Alfred, Lord Tennyson
(06 Aug 1809 - 06 Oct 1892)

Dear Friends and Schoolmates, 

   Guess what?!? We actually had a White Christmas here near St. Louis this morning! It's true, really! Okay, it was only a light dusting of snow, but it was sufficient to cover the ground and turn everything white and beautiful! I hope that your Christmas was also white and beautiful!

   Today we're revisiting the Newsletter theme from exactly five years ago today, which was suggested for use on Christmas Day at that time by our Wizard of Wonderment,        Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA.

   Thanks again, David!  

BONUS #1 - - I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day - Bing Crosby

BONUS #2 - - I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day - The Carpenters

BONUS #3 - - I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day - instrumental



On July 9, 1861,[67] a hot day, (his wife) Fanny was putting locks of her children's hair into an envelope and attempting to seal it with hot sealing wax while Longfellow took a nap.[68] Her dress suddenly caught fire, though it is unclear exactly how;[69] it may have been burning wax or a lighted candle which fell on her dress.[70] Longfellow, awoken from his nap, rushed to help her and threw a rug over her, though it was too small. He stifled the flames with his body as best he could, but she was already badly burned.[69] Over a half a century later, Longfellow's youngest daughter Annie explained the story differently, claiming that there was no candle or wax but that the fire started from a self-lighting match that had fallen on the floor.[61] In both versions of the story, however, Fanny was taken to her room to recover and a doctor was called. She was in and out of consciousness throughout the night and was administered ether. The next morning, July 10, 1861, she died shortly after 10 o'clock after requesting a cup of coffee.[71] Longfellow, in trying to save her, had burned himself badly enough that he was unable to attend her funeral.[72] His facial injuries caused him to stop shaving, thereafter wearing the beard which has become his trademark.[71]


Longfellow wrote "Christmas Bells" on Christmas Day 1863 in the midst of the American Civil War and the news of his son Charles Appleton Longfellow having suffered wounds as a soldier in the Battle of New Hope Church, VA during the Mine Run Campaign. Longfellow had suffered the great loss of his wife Fanny two years prior to an accident with fire. His despair in the following years was recorded in his journal.

The first Christmas after Fanny's death, Longfellow wrote, "How inexpressibly sad are all holidays." A year after the incident, he wrote, "I can make no record of these days. Better leave them wrapped in silence. Perhaps someday God will give me peace."

Almost a year later, Longfellow received word that his oldest son Charles, a lieutenant in the Army of the Potomac, had been severely wounded with a bullet passing under his shoulder blades and taking off one of the spinal processes. The Christmas of 1863 was silent in Longfellow's journal.

Finally, on Christmas Day of 1864, he wrote the words of the poem, "Christmas Bells." The reelection of Abraham Lincoln or the possible end of the terrible war may have been the occasion for the poem. Lt. Charles Longfellow did not die that Christmas, but lived. So, contrary to popular belief, the occasion of writing that much loved Christmas carol was not due to Charles' death. Longfellow's Christmas bells loudly proclaimed, "God is not dead."


      From My Husband, Paul Harty (Bardolph HS, IL - '61) of IL - 12/24/09 - "Need some serious prayer":


Would you please put Jane Boggess' dad on the NNHS prayer roll for me?  Thanks. 

Your Doodler

Hello Paul,

I am asking if you would pray for my dad. He has been fighting spinal cancer for the last few years. Two days ago, Mom admitted Dad into the hospital for diverticulosis. He is in ICU, with an infection and is out of it most of the time. The doctors said surgery was the last resource as Dad might not make it through the surgery, because of bleeding, low platelets, low white blood cells and such because of the cancer. So pray that Dad can get over the infection (peritonitis) and they can work on the intestine with-out surgery.

I sincerely thank you for your prayers,


   YOWZERONI! Certainly, Paul! Tell Jane we're on the job!

     From Me ('65) of IL - 12/13/09 (altered for date and repeated):

   I feel strongly impressed today to ask your fervent prayers on behalf of five people whose issues have not been mentioned here before. What I'm actually requesting is Five Christmas Miracles, as the various problems all need to find a resolution by New Year's Eve. I know that's only six days away now, but I also know among us there are some Mighty Prayer Warriors, and I would deeply appreciate your efforts, as I'm sure would they! Thank you all so very much - and Merry Christmas!


   Happy Christmas Birthday today to   Patsy Bloxom Meider ('57) of NC AND Doug Dickinson ('69) of VA!

    Happy Birthday this week to:

27 -   Anita Morgan Becker ('66) of VA;

29 - Roy Tate ('57);

30 -  William Gwynn ('57) AND   Ron Miller ('59) of NC AND (if Plaxo is to be believed)   Carole Althaus Tanenhaus ('65) of MD AND Sarah Stewart Vance ('69) of VA;

31 - Pat Floyd Pride ('62) of VA AND     Susie Overton Jones ('63) of VA AND (again, if Plaxo is to be believed)   David Rosenwasser ('64) of MO;

01 - Gloria Hand Burns ('57)!

   Many Happy Returns to You All!


December 25, 1941 - Admiral Chester W Nimitz arrived at Pearl Harbor to assume command of the U.S. Pacific Fleet.

December 25, 1941 - The Battle of Hong Kong ended, beginning the Japanese Occupation of Hong Kong.



Friday, December 25, 1964 - Footballer Gary McAllister was born in Newarthill, Motherwell, Scotland.

Friday, December 25, 1964 - Music video director and editor Tim Royes (d. 13 Aug 2007 in New York City) was born.

Friday, December 25, 1964 - Musician (Saint Etienne), filmmaker, and journalist Bob Stanley was born in Horsham, Sussex.

      From My Niece, Shari, of VA - 12/23/09 - "The 2nd Verse":

The 2nd Verse

We were singing Christmas songs in a staff meeting at our family business. We have a devotional service before the business portion starts. The current song was "Joy to the World."

Everyone chimed in heartily as we sang the first verse.

Then the second verse began.

Bright energetic voices changed into muffled and muted hums and babbling. My mother was standing beside me. Only her voice punched through the disharmonious ramblings of the crowd. She knew every word and sang it strong and clear. It is also amazing how one person who truly knows punches through the confusion.

I didn't know the second verse along with the rest of the crowd, but mother has always been different. It was a MountainWings Moment.

Most of us know the first verse. Few of us know beyond the surface and the general knowledge of the crowd. It is true with Joy to the World. It is true with true joy.

That which separates you from the crowd is always deeper than the surface.

Joy to the world, the Lord is come!
Let earth receive her King;
Let every heart prepare Him room,
And heaven and nature sing,
And heaven and nature sing,
And heaven, and heaven, and nature sing.

Joy to the world, the Savior reigns!
Let men their songs employ;
While fields and floods, rocks, hills and plains
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat the sounding joy,
Repeat, repeat, the sounding joy.

No more let sins and sorrows grow,
Nor thorns infest the ground;
He comes to make His blessings flow
Far as the curse is found,
Far as the curse is found,
Far as, far as, the curse is found.

He rules the world with truth and grace,
And makes the nations prove
The glories of His righteousness,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders of His love,
And wonders, wonders, of His love.

Joy to the World by Pastor Isaac Watts (1719)

That which separates you from the crowd is always deeper than the surface.

~A MountainWings Original~

   Thank you, Shari! I so enjoyed this story!

   Speaking of which.....

     From Me ('65) of IL - 12/25/09 - "Once a Weirdo, Always.....":

   You all know how weird I am, but lest you think I became that way later in life, I shall tell you now that I think I actually arrived here on earth that way.

   When I was three years old I taught myself to read. When I was five years old, I was given (in the weeks just before Christmas) a large wonderful paperback collection of sheet music to all the best loved Christmas carols. With the help of that booklet, I taught myself to read music, and memorized all the words to all the verses of those carols - including Joy to the World and today's selection, I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day. I remember them all still to this day, and that knowledge has enriched my soul immeasurably (and has been very convenient as my vision has faded over the years).

    From the Head Flagtwirler of 1965, Janice McCain Rose of VA - 12/24/09 - "snow for Christmas":

Merry Christmas Carol.....

For all of those who want to see snow for Christmas, I've attached three photos taken last weekend @ my new home celebrating our Family Christmas.....I think it snowed 20+ inches....and then of course, drifts were much deeper.  The snow is still here....and will be for some time.

     WOWZERS! How pretty! Thanks, Janice!

   The other day       My Cousin, Jean (Atkinson Mallory - Rappahannock HS / John Marshall HS - '65 - of VA) called me from Louisa to report the snowfall they had there.  

midnight sledding
with my kids
view of front of house my deck full
of snow

   She said there was in excess of two feet on the ground with the promise of 20" more!

      From My Husband, Paul Harty (Bardolph HS, IL - '61) of IL - 12/24/09 - "BRILLIANT Christmas Video":


You MUST NOT pass this one by:

   BRILLIANT, Dools?!? Well, yes, I suppose it is - but it's also weirdly creepy - like that old cartoon show with the moving human lips super-imposed on the drawings! Thanks, Paul!

From Norris Perry (Warwick HS - '59) of VA - 12/24/09 - "Thousands Gather to Protest Global Warming... !":

Merry Christmas & Happy New Year!!

     WILD GIGGLES! Thank you, Norris!

Merry Christmas to you, too!


  From Ed Nichols ('62) of Northern VA - 12/24/09 - "Merry Christmas":

Hi Carol.  

Wishing you and your Family a warm and blessed Christmas.....

Your friend, Ed Nichols

   Thanks so much, Eddie! Merry Christmas to you and yours, too!


  From Jane Chambers of VA - 07/01/09 - "CNC BOOK BROCHURE & AD":

   Contact Dr. Chambers at

   Thanks, Jane!


From ArcaMax Jokes - 12/24/09:

Married Couple

A young couple got married and left on their honeymoon. When they got back, the bride immediately called her mother.

"Well," said her mother, "so - how was the honeymoon?"

"Oh, mama," she replied, "the honeymoon was wonderful! So romantic..."

Suddenly she burst out crying. "But, mama, as soon as we returned Sam started using the most horrible language - things I'd never heard before! I mean, all these awful 4-letter words! You've got to come get me and take me home... PLEASE MAMA!"

"Sarah, Sarah," her mother said, "calm down! Tell me, what could be so awful? WHAT 4-letter words?"

"Please don't make me tell you, mama," wept the daughter, "I'm so embarrassed - they're just too awful! COME GET ME, PLEASE !!!"

"Darling, baby, you must tell me what has you so upset... Tell your mother these horrible 4-letter words!"

Still sobbing, the bride said, "Oh, mama...words like: Dust, Wash, Iron, Cook..."


Never Sick

Grandma Jones from the valley had never experienced a sick day in her life, so she didn't take it kindly when a bad case of the mulligrubs sent her to the hospital for observation.

By the time a pair of husky interns got Grandma tucked into bed, she had managed to complain about everything: the temperature, the lights, the skimpy gown, the food and the mattress, especially, the mattress.

Suddenly, Grandma spotted a small plastic item with a button, attached to a cord. "What's that?" she demanded.

"If you need anything in the middle of the night, Grandma," said one of the interns, "just press that button."

"What does it do, ring a bell?" she asked.

"No, it turns on a light in the hall for the nurse on duty," the intern replied.

"A light in the hall?" responded Grandma. "Look, I'm the sick one around here. If the night nurse needs a light on in the hall, she can get up and switch it on herself."


1. Friday and Saturday, August 6 and 7, 2010 - The NNHS Class of 1970 will hold its 40-Year Reunion. Saturday night will be at the Kiln Creek Golf & Country Club. For details, contact Carol Comer Cutler at or visit the reunion website at - CLASS OF 1970

2. Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, August 6, 7, and  8, 2010 - The NNHS Class of 1960 will hold its 50-Year Reunion at the Marriott Newport News at City Center. For details, contact Karen Weinstein Witte at - CLASS OF 1960

PRAYER ROLL: - updated 12/25/09

BLOG: - updated 08/04/09

   Y'all take good care of each other!  TYPHOONS FOREVER!  We'll Always Have Buckroe!

                          Love to all, Carol





Carol Buckley Harty

    To donate, click on the Donate Button on the left,  or just mail it directly to my home (address available upon request). Thanks!

I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day

Words by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow (27 Feb 1807 – 24 Mar 1882), 1863

Music by John Baptiste Calkin (16 Mar 1827 - 15 Apr 1905), 1870's

I heard the bells on Christmas day
Their old familiar carols play,
And wild and sweet the words repeat
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And thought how, as the day had come,
The belfries of all Christendom
Had rolled along the unbroken song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

Till ringing, singing on its way
The world revolved from night to day,
A voice, a chime, a chant sublime
Of peace on earth, good will to men.

And in despair I bowed my head
“There is no peace on earth,” I said,
“For hate is strong and mocks the song
Of peace on earth, good will to men.”

Then pealed the bells more loud and deep:
“God is not dead, nor doth He sleep;
The wrong shall fail, the right prevail
With peace on earth, good will to men.”

"I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" midi courtesy of,
at the suggestion of Dave Spriggs ('64) of VA - 12/18/04
Thanks, David - It's perfect!

"I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" lyrics courtesy of and - 12/18/04

"I Heard the Bells on Christmas Day" sheet music available at - 12/25/03

"Merry Christmas" clip art courtesy of - 12/18/04

Snowy Bells clip art courtesy of - 12/18/04

Navy Seal clip art courtesy of - 05/29/06

Ornament Divider Line clip art courtesy of - 12/18/04

Animated Tiny Birthday Cake clip art courtesy of Sarah Puckett Kressaty ('65) of VA - 08/31/05
Thanks, Sarah Sugah!

Pine Forest High School (NC) Trojans Logo clip art courtesy of - 05/19/07

Army Seal clip art courtesy of Al Farber ('64) of GA - 05/24/06 (still missing...)
Thanks, Al!
Replaced by Norm Covert ('61) of MD - 02/09/09
Thanks, Norm!

John Marshall High School's Justice Scale clip art courtesy of Cheryl White Wilson (JMHS - '64) of VA - 10/13/05 (replaced 02/23/09)
Thanks, Cheryl!

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