Altamont, Sept. 5, 2013

On Aug. 28, 1963 Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., delivered his “I Have a Dream” speech at the Lincoln Memorial in Washington, D.C. This year marked the 50th anniversary of that famous speech that has moved many people around the world. We heard, this week, that Dr. King’s speech was prepared for the occasion, however he was prompted by a friend to tell about his dream. At that point, he went off script and delivered extemporaneously one of the most stirring speeches ever delivered.

Dr. King did not just use words to try to achieve his dream; he worked with people to show that the dream was good for everyone and not just a line item on a bucket list.

We all have dreams. Some people work very hard to learn what they need to make their dream come true. When they know what it will require, they buckle down and begin the journey to success. Other people start with dreams, and when they find out what is necessary to make that dream come true, they change it from a dream to a wish.

This summer, we have been excited for the people who hit lottery jackpots. Some of the winners described how they would use the new found riches; for travel, college for their children or grandchildren's education, new furniture, new homes, new cars; and the exciting list just goes on. A few winners had no idea about how they would use the money and others said they would share it with those in need.

When it comes to large sums of money we must admit that it is part of our wish list and not a dream of ours. When the lottery gets to be a very large sum, you often hear folks talk about what they would do with the money.

We have talked about it and if we became one of the winners, our first thought would be to set up a foundation with the majority of the money. We thought the next step would be to hire a banking group and attorney to handle applications to the foundation for a gift or loan and to manage the money so it could grow.

The main reason that we consider this a wish and not a dream is because we understand that in order to win, you have to buy a ticket. We seldom buy lottery tickets, so that really reduces our chances of becoming a winner. Of course, that was said with a little tongue in cheek.

My husband and I are not people who do a lot of wishing for things. We were raised in families that had a good strong work ethic. They provided the essentials for us such as food, clothing and a roof over our head. In return, for these essentials we had chores to do around the house. If we wanted extras we had to do extra chores to earn the money. We could baby sit, mow lawns, shovel walks or anything else that was honest work. Basically, they taught us that you had to take care of essentials first and then work and save for the extras – the things that you dream about.

Jim, my husband, likes to quote Benjamin Franklin when it comes to spending money to fulfilling a wish or a dream. His favorite quote of Franklin’s is, “Whatever you earn, spend less”. I have to admit that would be a good rule for many people to follow.

When we got married most people saved their money until they could make a substantial down payment on a home. A budget was something that families worked with closely in order to achieve their goals, or dreams. Times have changed so much since then, and the dreams that we once expected is part of daily living for many people today.

It has become so easy to use plastic credit cards that we almost forget that we are really borrowing money that does have to be paid back at some time in the future. Hopefully, that will be when the next bill arrives in the mail but, more often than not, it will be at some unknown date in the future. If the date is later, then we have to add the interest to the money we borrowed which reduces the amount of money we can spend on new things.

The thought of saving for something that we wanted usually created a lot of excitement and anticipation for the day we had reached our goal and could go out and purchase what we had been dreaming about. Each week as we put some more money toward our dream we would talk about it, relish the day it would come to fruition and really rejoice and celebrate our achievement. The more expensive the dream the longer we had to wait and the sweeter the joy of accomplishment.

Our background of saving to buy also makes us cringe at the thought of having to pay interest on something that we already own and in some cases have already used or discarded. Certainly, today at the cost of automobiles, it makes sense to finance the vehicle for a few years. However, the bill for a night out at a restaurant or the weekly groceries that are charged and not paid for, when that bill comes in would drive us crazy. It just seems the interest spent for those expenses could be better used for new purchases.

We all have different goals in life. Some people set those goals or dreams and work to reach them while others let life dictate their wishes or direction. At some point, we need to look at where we are going, what we are doing, and what we need to do to reach our dreams.

Schools open

On Friday, Sept. 6, schools in the Guilderland Central School District will be open. Drivers are reminded to be aware of children crossing the streets.  Also, drivers must not pass a school bus with red flashing lights.

BBQ

Just a reminder of the Altamont Ladies Auxiliary will hold its annual Brooks B-B-Q tomorrow, Friday, Sept. 6, from 3:30 to 6:30 p.m.   The cost for dinner is $10 for adults, a child’s dinner is  $7, and half-chicken is $7 also.  This is a take out only.

VBS

Again, the Altamont Vacation Bible School was successful. It was reported that 75 children signed up and there were 60 volunteers on hand. The vacation Bible schoolwas held at St. John's Lutheran Church and projects and snacks at the Altamont Masonic Hall on Maple Avenue. 

Appreciation is extended to all who participated in this year's successful VBS.

Senior trip

The next trip planned for the Altamont Seniors will be to Gavin's Irish Country Inn on Wednesday, Sept. 18.  The bus will leave St. Lucy/St. Bernadette parish center at 9:30 a.m., those attending are asked to arrive at least 15 minutes before the departure time. 

Upon arrival at the Inn, participants will enjoy a jackpot bingo with coffee, tea and scones.  Lunch at noon will include Irish soda bread, beef barley soup, corned beef and cabbage or baked salmon or chicken marsala with apple pie a la mode for dessert. There will be a complimentary glass of wine or beer in the pub where all will enjoy live Irish music.

There will be a mystery stop in Round Top.

The bus will return to Altamont at approximately 5 p.m.

The trip cost for participating seniors, residents or taxpayers of the village of Altamont and water/sewer users is $45.  Non-residents cost is $55.  Checks should be made payable to the Village of Altamont. Deadline for money is Sept. 10.  

Reservations with check should be mailed to Altamont Seniors, P.O. Box 227, Altamont, NY 12009. 

For additional information contact Jean at 861-5516 or Kathy at 861-6258.

One call

The Guilderland Central School now has the ability to contact parents in the event of emergencies. This service will only be used in the event of school closures, delays or any serious emergencies. This new system will provide safety and security for all studenta and will allow the district to reach all parents in a timely manner.

Capacity study

The Guilderland Central School District held a capacity study meeting this past Tuesday. If you were unable to attend, the event was videotaped and will be aired on Channel 16 throughout the month of September.

Stockade show

The public is invited to attend the Stockade art show and organ series on Saturday, Sept. 7, from 10:30 a.m. to 5 p.m.  The Stockade is located in the historic district of Schenectady.

The featured artists will include Agnes Armstrong of Altamont and Thomas Walton Bambury of Schenectady along with three other artists.

56th anniversary

Happy-anniversary wishes are extended to Morag and Don Stauffer who will celebrate their 56th anniversary on Sept. 7.

Birthdays

Happy-birthday wishes are extended to:

— Molly Walton on Sept. 6;

— Mark Grimm, Carolyn Ramo, John Tymchyn, and Beth Woodward on Sept. 7;

— Anna Groff Bacote, Ethan John Connolly, and Cheryl Farley on Sept. 8;

— Joe Donato, Paul Forand, and Nicholas Murphy on Sept. 9;

— Jeff Battista, Jennifer Cardone, and Ronald Pfluke on Sept. 10;

— Kristi Adams Bachus, Tony Delligan, Alex Onorati, and Christopher James Young on Sept. 11; and

— Mary Hillman, Amy Houck, and Christopher Usher on Sept. 12.

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