Lake Life

& Such

Boy Scout Troop #398 meets at the Cedar Creek Bible Church from 7-8:30 p.m. each Tuesday. For more information, call (903) 498-5725 or (903) 498-3830.
Cedar Creek Art Society meets from 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. the last Thursday of each month at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. A $3 donation per artist is asked.
Cedar Creek Domino Club meets each week on Wednesday at the Mabank Volunteer Fire Department. For more info, call (903) 498-4351.
Cedar Creek NAR-ANON meets at 8 p.m. on Tuesday at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points.
Cedar Creek Narcotics Anonymous meets at 8 p.m., Sunday, Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday, Friday, and Saturday at 715 S. Hwy. 274, Ste. D in Seven Points.
Cedar Creek 49ers Club meets every Thursday and fourth Saturday for fellowship and dancing. Doors open at 6 p.m. The club is located off Arnold Hill Road in Seven Points. Call for more information, (903) 432-3552.
Cedar Creek Lake Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Wednesday at The Jalapeno Tree in Gun Barrel City, except the second week of the month, when the club meets Thursday in conjunction with the area chamber of commerce luncheon.
Cedar Creek Optimist Club meets every Tuesday at noon at the Dairy Queen in Seven Points. For more information please call Danny Hampel at (903) 778-4508.
Cedar Creek Republican Club meets every fourth Thursday. For more information call (903) 887-4867.
Cedar Creek Rotary Club meets at noon each Friday at Vetoni’s Italian Restaurant. For more information, call Dee Ann Owens at (903) 340-2415.
Cub Scout Pack #333 meets at the First United Methodist Church of Mabank the second and fourth Monday at 7 p.m. For information, call Mary Harris at (903) 451-5280 or Tonya Capley at (903) 498-4725.
Girl Scout Troop #112 meets at the First United Methodist Church in Mabank the second and fourth Monday at 7 p.m. For more info, call GeriLeigh Stotts at (469) 323-7943 or Malisa Bilberry at (903) 340-7451, or email
Disabled American Veterans Chapter 101 meets the second Monday of each month at the Senior Citizens Center on Hwy. 31 in Athens.
Girl Scout Troop 2667 meets every Tuesday at 6:30 p.m. at the Aley United Methodist Church. For more information, please call Suzann Smith at (903) 887-3889.
Gun Barrel Quilter’s Guild meets from 10 a.m. on the second Wednesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. For more information, please call (903) 451-4221.
Kaufman County Republican Women’s Club meets the third Saturday of each month at the Farm Bureau Insurance Company, located at 2477 N. Hwy. 34 in Kaufman. For more info, call (972) 287-1239 or (903) 880-6770.
Kemp Kiwanis Club meets at noon each Tuesday at the Nutrition Center in Kemp. For more information, please call Dr. Jim Collinsworth at (903) 887-7486.
Lake Area Council of the Blind meets at 6 p.m. on the second Saturday of the month at West Athens Baptist Church.
Lake Area Democrats Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the third Tuesday of the month at Dairy Queen in Seven Points. Everyone is welcome. Email  for more information.
Mabank/Cedar Creek Area Lions Club meets at 6:30 p.m. on the fourth Tuesday of each month at the Tri-County Library in Mabank. Call (903) 887-5252 for info.
Mabank Garden Club meets at 2:45 p.m. at the Tri-County Library on the third Tuesday of every month (different times in May and December).
Oak Harbor/Tanglewood Crime Watch meets at 7 p.m. on the second Tuesday of the month at the R.T. Beamguard Community Center in Oak Harbor.
Roddy Masonic Lodge meets at 6:30 p.m. the second Monday each month. Call (903) 887-6201 for info.
RootSeekers meet at 7 p.m. on the third Monday of the month in the Tri-County Library in downtown Mabank. The public is welcome to attend.
Southeast Kaufman County Senior Citizens Center Board of Directors meets at 1 p.m. on the fourth Thursday of each month at the center, located at 300 N. Dallas Street in Kemp. For more info, call (903) 498-2140.
SUICIDE SURVIVORS GROUP for those grieving the loss of someone by suicide, meets every Monday at 6:30 p.m. at First United Methodist Church in Mabank.
TAMARACK LADIES CLUB meets at 11 a.m. the first Wednesday of each month at the TLC Hall.
TOPS (Take Off Pounds Sensibly) meet at 6 p.m. each Monday at the First Baptist Church of Mabank. Contact Gaye Ward at (903) 887-5913 for more info.
TVCC Singles meet at 7 p.m. each Monday in the Nutrition Center at TVCC, located off Park Street near the Athens Country Club. This is a support group for singles of all ages and is supported by TVCC. For more info, call Hilda Anding at (903) 489-2259.


A little love goes a long way
Labor of Love builds a ramp to ease another’s way
By Pearl Cantrell
Monitor Staff Writer

TRINIDAD–Judy Standard is 78 years young. Her arthritis pains her on cold, damp mornings (such as those last week), but somehow she keeps her sunny disposition.
“When I get down I pray to the Lord, ‘give me back my joy,’” Standard said.
She came to live in Texas about 12 years ago from California, where she was employed as a factory worker in a plant that manufactured medical parts.
“It was hard work, but good work,” she said. “I’d still be working if I could.”

Monitor Photo/Pearl Cantrell
It takes this five-man crew about three hours to build a new wheelchair ramp in Trinidad. However, it also took 10 hours of planning, shopping and delivering materials to the site.

Judy has lived in Trinidad the past 10 years. She has a son who lives in Payne Springs, but for whatever reason doesn’t come out to visit her or take her phone calls.
She asks this reporter to carry out a tray of mugs, napkins, creamer filled with milk and slices of a chocolate cake she’s made especially for the five men, ranging in age from 62 to 71, as they trudge in the mud to build her something she’ll find useful.
“I knew I’d be crippled up with arthritis sooner or later,” she said.
“So how did you get five strapping senior men to build you a ramp?” I ask.
“Well, Lou (Menendez, one of the crew) is my very good friend. He and his wife (Carole) visit me every so often.”
The Menendezes met her two years ago, when they attended the now-disbanded Pathway Community Church.
Now attending the First Baptist Church in Gun Barrel City, Lou Menendez helped build the stage for the church’s annual Singing Christmas Tree performance back in December.

Monitor Photo/Pearl Cantrell
Handrails go up on the new ramp.

One of the other builders asked him if he would like to get involved with Labor of Love and help build wheelchair ramps.
Lou thought he wasn’t really qualified, since his career had been in computer programming, but agreed to help man a crew.
“I asked them if we could build a ramp for my good friend Judy,” Lou said.
So that’s how a ramp is going in on the porch of Judy’s house in Spillway Acres.
Not only that but they also built a mini ramp to ease the one-inch step down between her door and porch
Judy relates how Carole helped her get the paperwork filled out, and continues to help her with other forms to make sure she gets assistance the government and other charities may offer.
“There’s a lot of help for older folks, but the paperwork seems daunting,” Lou said. He recalled helping his own father with insurance filings and medical payments.
The Menendezes also volunteer as drivers for the Meals on Wheels program.
This is Lou’s second wheelchair ramp project with Labor of Love, the first going in a Log Cabin residence.
“I’m sorry for yakking away with one of your workers for so long,” I apologize.
“We all do what we do best,” Gary Miller quickly responds.

Monitor Photo/Pearl Cantrell
Homeowner Judy Standard tells Terry Zieger how much she's looking forward to using her new ramp. "It's going to be so much easier for me now," she said.

Miller has been volunteering with Labor of Love for a year and a half, and this is his eighth wheelchair ramp project since January.
Obviously, he doesn’t do a lot of “yakking.”
Terry Zieger, the youngest of the crew, takes a moment during a coffee break to tell me why he volunteers.
“You know how they put the dates on the tombstones – born this date, died on that date? Well, in between is a dash that you fill in with what you did during your life. I’m filling in my dash,” Zieger said.
It’s a theme his Aley Methodist Church minister has been focusing on for the last month, he said.
“Yeah, there’s a couple of Methodists mixed in with the Baptists,” Miller jokes.
Labor of Love is a faith-based, nonprofit volunteer organization in Henderson County. There are 73 volunteers, 13 of those project managers (i.e., people who actually know how to repair and build stuff).
Labor of Love started in Athens in 1986 with the members of the First Christian Church.
Some of its members were heavily involved with Habitat for Humanity, and wanted to focus efforts on houses needing repairs, so their occupants could remain living there safely.
The following year, members from the Athens First Presbyterian Church, First United Methodist Church and First Baptist Church got involved.
In the past five years, volunteers from across the Cedar Creek Lake area have joined, mushrooming the number of projects the group could complete in a year.
In 2002, Labor of Love completed 25 projects, spending $20,000. Last year, 231 repair projects were done for $161,000. The group expects to do that much and more this year.
The types of repairs the organization is willing to take on include:
• installing grab bars in bathrooms,
• repairing roofs,
• building ramps,
• repairing floors,
• replacing windows and doors, and
• installing stairs and handrails.
Those qualified to receive aid must own their own home in the county, be economically challenged or have other special circumstances, such as having a disability, being elderly, or a single mother.
Candidates must submit an application through the Help Center in Athens.
Financial support comes from the Henderson County United Way, and through several foundations, including the Cain Foundation, Murchison Foundation, the Meadows, Owens and Herd foundations, various churches, businesses and individuals.
Labor of Love has only one paid employee, a part-time office manager, who pre-qualifies applicants, sends forms, receives calls and helps the on-site screening team.
Houses always need to be repainted. A special project is set up through Labor of Love just for that, using youth labor from the Boy Scouts, church groups and 4-H clubs.
Labor of Love works because of the donations of time and resources from individuals and organizations who want to make a difference.
If you want to help those in need, contact Labor of Love at (903) 675-5683. To refer someone to Labor of Love for a needed home repair project, have them call the Help Center at (903) 675-4357.
About three hours after they started, the five-man crew is done building their project for Lou’s friend Judy.
She’s pleasantly surprised when each gentleman says his good bye with a gentle, heartfelt hug.
“I just wasn’t expecting that,” Judy said. “I didn’t realize how much I needed those hugs.”

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