The post-Christmas weather has not been that favorable, really rather grey and overcast days and very cold nights. There were a few days in the high 40s, but they were accompanied by pouring rain and blustery winds. May the New Year bring us another mild winter. Looking back at 2013 — too many changes, but perhaps we will all look on the brighter side and enjoy all the greatness.

Thank you to Rev. Roger Spinney for filling in at Community Baptist Church for the advent services during December. Thank you to Sara Piazza for offering to assist us on Christmas Eve by accompanying us with her guitar during the singing of all the carols. Sara really went above and beyond to accommodate us.

The annual Christmas party in Aquinnah was a fun time for all. Thank you to Santa’s assistant, Bill Kistner, who captured the attention of each child as they sat on his lap and received their gift. Their photographs were also captured by Ken Wentworth and Lisa Bibko-Vanderhoop. There were many elves who planned the evening for all to enjoy. Thank you to Tom Seeman and Marsha Shufrin of Vineyard Bottled Waters for their donation of paper goods for the party. Thank you to Matt and Bridget Tobin of Tea Lane Nursery for providing the beautiful Christmas tree. Thank you to Jay Smalley for providing transportation for Santa on the fire truck. The evening once again brought back memories of the Christmas parties that have been held in the town hall for decades — the families gathering, the children seeing Santa and playing throughout the night. Of course, the potluck was fantastic as well.

Condolences to the family and friends of Pauline Gaudreau who passed away in New Bedford this week. Many long years of family gatherings, especially weddings, have been shared along the way. Pauline worked for many years with Alby at Metropolitan Life in Fairhaven. Her children Carol, Joseph, David, Susan, Louise and Paul were all part of our extended Manning-Rose family, often residing with us while working their summer jobs on the Vineyard driving a tour bus for Kenny Rose at Gay Head Sightseeing or at Nancy’s Snack Bar for the Abdelnour family. Their last visit was just a few years ago when the whole family arrived to stay in Menemsha. We will all miss those exciting times. `

Condolences to the family and friends of Dr. Edward Leonard who passed away on Dec. 28 at his home in Maryland. The Leonard family has resided just down the road a piece for the past half-century during their Vineyard summers. They were the neighbors of the Allens, the Deans, the Johnsons, and the Weiss family overlooking the north shore. Dr. Leonard was always a joy to connect with during his summer visits, with his very expressive manner. We will miss him along Lighthouse Road where he would jog each day, even well into his 80s.

Condolences to the family and friends of Howard Wall who passed away on Saturday. He was a friend to many, was very humble, and he could not convince me that he was a bagpiper-in-training as he was incredibly professional while performing at our MV Center for Living cultural luncheon honoring the Scottish of Martha’s Vineyard.

Condolences to the family and friends of Lester White who passed away over the weekend. Many long family associations with his family over more than half a century. Lester was a dear friend to many, always jovial. He is survived by his wife Leona (Smith) and their son Antone, as well as by his brothers George and Albert, and sister Katy, and many nieces and nephews.

Congratulations to Douglas and Kathleen Plummer on the birth of their son Marshall Sheehan Plummer who was born in Manhattan on Dec. 12. They arrived at their Aquinnah home on Monday. Marshall is already demonstrating what a well-behaved child he will be, as well as all of the other fine qualities of newborns.

Ted Leslie arrived home on Saturday after spending the past two weeks in Massachusetts General Hospital, 10 of those days in isolation. By all accounts, Kristina insists they wanted to discharge him much earlier but could not. Too many tales of his stay.

Tom and Christine Murphy and their children Tim and Kate were at their Aquinnah home for Christmas. Kate was accompanied by her husband Tim and their son Noah. All enjoyed the Aquinnah town party.

Have you read Unthinkable by Clyde Phillips? It is now on the shelves of our local bookstores. Clyde and his family are summer residents of Aquinnah.

Naushon Vanderhoop and her daughter Nanawusuwee arrived Christmas evening for the holiday. Her mother Roxane Ackerman drove to Brooklyn to bring them home to Aquinnah. While here, Naushon celebrated her birthday on Thursday.

Giles Welch departed on Tuesday for a five-day drive across the country to his studies at Haskell University in Lawrence, Kans.

Ken Wentworth and his wife Liz Witham were delighted to have his parents Richard and Eleanor Wentworth with them over the Christmas holiday.

John and Jan Wightman have spent their holiday in Attleboro with family and friends. Jan is still recuperating from her fall and fracture but did not let that stop her from conducting the Minnesingers concert.

Fellow Vineyard Gazette columnist John Alley believes I am the senior columnist, but I know that Jane Slater and Nancy Gardella certainly have years on me. My column has been in since June 1993, minus eight months, so perhaps I am a little more senior than John. I am very technologically challenged again this morning, and oftentimes the technology troubles make me wonder if I should continue writing. I almost wanted to make it an even 20-year stint. However, on Sunday while shopping, I met for the first time a gentleman named John Brooks (a friend of Leon Braithwaite) from Indiana who could quote so many facts from my column I decided to reconsider, at least for this week. So, I guess you are all still stuck with me for a little while longer.

Thank you to the staff at the Martha’s Vineyard Hospital emergency room on Friday — nurses Lori, Betsy, Dana and Joanne; doctors Morris Rivera and Jonathan Pangia; technologist Mike and Bertha and Cindi at the desk especially for keeping Dr. Laursen informed. Thank you to my family for their support and encouragement and for being there with me. After spending most of the afternoon and evening there, I am once again feeling much better and will have the strength to get through the New Year. Happy birthday wishes this week to David Duarte and Stephen Silvia who share the day on Jan. 4. Maeve Sheehan will be seven years old on Jan. 5. Alexander James Milavsky will party on Jan. 5, just returning from a month-long tour of southeast Asia with his parents Barry and Judith (Manning). Francis Brown will celebrate on Jan. 5. Kaitlyn Joy Vanderhoop will be eight years old on Jan. 6. Sonya Mayrand parties on Jan. 8. Ann Burt will observe her special day on Jan. 9.