Mountain Views News, Combined Edition Saturday, December 7, 2019

MVNews this week:  Page 4


Mountain Views-News Saturday, December 7, 2019 

KATIE Tse....This and That


 by Deanne Davis


 How has your week 
been? I don’t know 
about you, but nothing 
particularly fascinating 
happened to me. Don’t 
think I’m complaining, 
though. I’ll take familiar 
and predictable any day. 
However, familiar and 
predictable don’t make 
for interesting writing. If 
you read my column often, you know that when 
inspiration fails me, I can always rely on my mom’s 
friend, Florence.

 Not only is Florence a fabulous story teller, but 
she, herself, attracts funny situations. Like moths 
to a light, so humorous people and weird situations 
gravitate toward Florence. She doesn’t have to try to 
make things happen. If you hang around her long 
enough, you, too, will get involved in something 
worth retelling.

 Today’s story includes one of the many animals Florence and her family rescued near 
their home in rustic Montebello. (Yes, Montebello was rustic once.) Although they didn’t 
live near the ocean, a wayward seagull landed on their property. (It was probably pulled 
in by Florence’s inherent magnetism.) They nursed it back to health, but it was never 
seaworthy again. So, it became a family pet. We’ll call him Dean (think James Dean in 
“Rebel Without a Cause”).

 Among his many personality quirks, Dean had the habit of standing at the back end of 
their long driveway, waiting for an oncoming car. As soon as one appeared on the horizon, 
Dean took to the air and dive bombed right in front of the car’s path. He had gotten very 
good at timing this, and knew just when to pull away at the last moment. Nine times out 
of 10, the driver would loudly slam on his breaks. 

 Perhaps it was the sound of the screeching breaks or the smell of burnt rubber that Dean 
enjoyed. Whatever it was, Dean got a kick out of the whole routine. I’d like to think that 
it was the drivers’ good, animal-loving nature that kept Dean from becoming road kill, 
but more likely it was an automatic reaction to a large foreign body hurtling toward their 

 I’m sure Florence’s family tried to break Dean of this nasty habit, but who’s ever heard 
of a trained seagull? Probably equally difficult to explain were the explanation of the long, 
heavy tire marks in front of their driveway. 

“Have yourself a merry little Christmas, let your heart be light.

From now on, our troubles will be out of sight.” Ralph Blane & Hugh Martin

Remember that? Judy Garland singing to 
Margaret O’Brien in the 1944 movie, “Meet 
Me In St. Louis.” You probably do as this 
is a perennial favorite Christmas movie, 
along with “Miracle on 34th Street,” “It’s a 
Wonderful Life,” and about 17 different 
versions of Dickens’ “A Christmas Carol.” 
My least favorite version: Bill Murray 
in “Scrooged.” I am admitting publicly 
that I like “Home Alone” from 1990 with 
Macauley Culkin as the little kid who 
gets left behind when his family goes on 
vacation, takes on New York and various 
villains and wins! “The Polar Express” with 
Tom Hanks was wonderful. Of course, 
anything Tom Hanks does is pretty much 
great. And you can’t forget “Elf” with Will 
Ferrell (2003) which is now a musical! But 
my all time favorite is “A Christmas Story” 
from 1983 where the kid gets his tongue 
stuck on the flagpole as he was double-
dog dared to do it. You remember! And 
Ralphie wants a Red Ryder Air Rifle and 
everybody keeps saying, “You’ll shoot 
your eye out, kid!” 

I’ve been decorating. All my lighted houses 
are up on top of the bookcases but the first 
things I put up were my lighted deer and 
the star showers. The star showers add 
magic to just about any sort of outdoor lighting. I’ve got two of them outside that light up the 
whole front of the house and shine nicely on my reindeer. Right now my TV Christmas Music 
channel is playing Elvis singing, “Blue Christmas,” and minutes ago, “Grandma Got Run Over By 
A Reindeer!” Another shameful confession, I love that song!


We hope yours is being ‘a merry little Christmas’ this year, and that your heart is indeed light. As 
we were out walking Sierra Madre a few years ago, my Christmas decorations admiring walking 
buddy, John - who is now celebrating Christmas in heaven - and I, found a piece of paper on the 
sidewalk and this is what it said:

A Child’s Prayer of Thanks

Dear God,

I’m thankful for all You give,

For food,

For love,

A place to live,

I thank You for my family too,

And I want You to know

That I love You.


I have kept this out in the kitchen ever since and think it expresses pretty much everything for 
which we can be thankful. Sierra Madre is such a beautiful place, with our own personal mountains 
available for good long ‘look’ moments. We have friendly people who smile and say Hello! when 
you pass them in front of Beantown or Starbucks. We have beautiful homes on every street, so 
many trees, and a splendid Christmas tree, crèche, menorah and dreidel in Kersting Court. 

“Our hearts grow tender with childhood memories and love of family, and we are better 
throughout the year for having, in spirit, become a child again at Christmastime.” 

Laura Ingalls Wilder

One of my favorite Christmas songs...written by me and my writing partner, David Wheatley, is 
“Think Joy!” from Star of Wonder – A Christmas Musical. The first and last verses are below here. 

“Christmas! It’s finally here! My favorite...favorite time of year!

Think mistletoe and holly...children’s faces jolly!

Carols on the radio...happy smiles each place you go,

Presents piled beneath the tree...some for you and some for me!

Best of all...the Christmas story,

Jesus left behind His glory!

A bright new star up in the sky,

Shepherds see, and wonder why.

Angels sing of peace on earth,

It’s time, at last, Messiah’s birth!

A stable filled with heaven’s light,

The world will change this Christmas night.

Christmas! It’s almost here!

My favorite....favorite time of year.




“May the simple joys of Christmas warm your heart, fill your home and last a lifetime.”

My book page: Deanne Davis


Christmas is just a few short weeks away and my book:

“Sunrises and Sunflowers Speak Hope” 

Would be a really nice gift for everyone you know.

You can find it on

“Star of Wonder” a delightful Christmas Kindle story is there, too.

If you’d like a little preview, take a look at: 

St. Rita School is accepting Applications for the 2020-2021 School Year!
*21st Century Skills -Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration*Moral Development and Academic Excellence. 
*Leadership and Public Speaking 
*STEM (Robotics)
*Technology (1:1 iPads)
*Championship Sports*Performing & Fine Arts*After School Care-Enrichment Classes*Accelerated InstructionInnovative opportunities for all learners!
Students forge lifelong friendships through their academics, sports and multiple 
enrichment opportunities. 
Schedule a tour to learn more!
(626) 355-6114322 N. Baldwin Ave.
Sierra Madre, Ca.

Christmas and New Year's Holiday parking exemptions are as follows:

Beginning at 2:00AM on Saturday, 12-14-2019, there will be a city wide exemption for parking 
viola-tions relating to Permit Parking and Overnight Parking. This exemption will extend until 
5:00AM on Thursday, 01-02-2020 in observance of the holidays. Please note, there will be officers 
staffing the SMPD, 24/7 to handle enforceable parking issues and safety violations during these 

Mountain Views News 80 W Sierra Madre Blvd. No. 327 Sierra Madre, Ca. 91024 Office: 626.355.2737 Fax: 626.609.3285 Email: Website: