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Eating those black-eyed peas
by Chris Alllen Baker, The Scott County Times
Dec 31, 2013 | 218 views | 0 0 comments | 67 67 recommendations | email to a friend | print
This New Year holiday has certainly been one to remember. The most amazing thing about it all is that it only seems like yesterday that I was looking forward to it. Then, bam! It's time to turn that far right digit to 2014.

I mentioned before how the past few holiday weeks played havoc with our printing schedule - basically throwing it all over the map. Just a moment ago, I had to remind myself, again, which edition I was working on. Just like the week before Christmas, we printed this edition on Saturday with deadlines backed up to Thursday and Friday.

I am just thankful that it will be 2019 before Christmas and New Year's Day lands on our (Scott County Times) publication day Wednesday.

So this year has flown by about as fast or faster than the past month. I had the opportunity to cover another state championship by the Scott Central Lady Rebels basketball team. I had the opportunity to write about a Mississippi State baseball player (with family ties to Scott County) in the College World Series. Those are just a couple of highlights that come to mind right away.

So much has changed in the way my family celebrates New Year's Day. It just isn't the same. Not that it is bad now, just different.

Looking back as I have in this space in the past, I remember fondly how my parents traditionally held a party on New Year's Day where many of our friends would spend the day at our house watching college football bowl games and had plenty of fun predicting the outcomes. Some predictions were better than others.

One key ingredient of the holiday for me was to make sure that I ate some black-eyed peas for good luck in the new year. That is something that was always a must in my home while growing up. It has worked, I suppose, although I am not sure how much the peas had to do with any good luck I have had later. As the eternal optimist, I am going to think the peas helped so that tradition will keep going.

When my mom became a member of the State College Board, our New Year's activities changed quite a bit. If Ole Miss, State or Southern Miss was in a bowl game, chances are that my parents or all three of us would be attending one or more. That meant no New Year's Day party, or someone else would take up the cause at their home.

Even though my mom is off the board, the parties remain a relic of our past as everyone in the neighborhood is off on new ventures. Still, you can pretty much find my parents watching college football and eating black-eyed peas.

After having to stay home last week while Emily and Aaron were in Florida, I was looking forward to ringing in the new year with them after they returned Saturday.

Like many people, I make a few resolutions in good faith with every intention of keeping them. I have had a few years where I actually did complete one or two resolutions. I am still carrying a few others over year after year. I think this year I will stick to the basics:

Continue to be the best father to Aaron and best husband to Emily that I can be. Be the best that I can be at work and always try to improve. Try not to sweat the small stuff and make the most of what I have. Hopefully the rest will fall into place.

Chris Allen Baker is a native of Winona and serves as the managing editor of The Scott County Times. He can be reached by e-mail at
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