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Julie Young’s third grade class. Photo courtesy of Julie YoungIf you want a quirky answer to a standard question, ask a kid.
The Fluvanna Review went looking for fresh reflections on Thanksgiving in Julie Young’s third grade class at Carysbrook Elementary School. The result was a sheaf of handwritten musings straight from the hearts of some of Fluvanna’s cutest kids.
And yes, they all answered in complete sentences.
What are you thankful for?
• My mom, dad, dog, chickens, cat, Granmma, Granpa, brother, cosens, Unkle and ant. (Mason Chiovaro)
• My frends and famly and my Anumls, and God (heven,) my Smarts, my helth and good shape, my Books, my imagunashn. (Shaun Larraburu)
• My Anamails, frineds, famliy, house, School, teacher, food, water, God, car, air, gravity, and chlose! (Abby White)
• Candy, Gifts, mony, make up, Jylry, my friens. (Diamond Johnson)
• My family, God, my house, my friends, make up and evreything else. (Tierra Patterson)
• My Drums, my cat’s, my paront’s, my Minecraft, my life, and my Garrett [friend]. (Tyler DeGregory)
What do you like best about Thanksgiving?
• I like food the best, because my mamaw makes really good mash potatos. (Allison Monfalcone)
• I like to play turky baseball. Frist you get ferid turky then you throw the freind turky. Then you hit it with a bat. Simpale. (Alex Wiese)
• The food, The games, and cakes. (Diamond Johnson)
• I like my famliy the best because, they are so nice and we get to eat together and the truky all the food! (Abby White)
• I like food Becas it is delishos. (Shaun Larraburu)
• I like Thanksgiving the best because we go down to Grandmas house and everybody comes down because my Grandma makes the best food. (Tierra Patterson)
• I like turkey becase the flavor is awsome. (Dylan Pardue)
• I like geting together with my family the best, because I Love to spend time with my family. (Noah Jones)
• I like Pumpkin pie Because it is yummy, sweet, tasty delisues, and cool. (Garrett Chilson)
• I like spending time with my family and having fun together. (Artela Aljiji)
• I like best is my whole family gits together because my whole family lives in anther house. (Breanna Wheaton)
If you were in charge of Thanksgiving, what would you make? Why?
• I like Turkey it tastes so, so, so, good. (Mac Cobbs)
• Mash potaetos Becase they are Soper Good. (Shaun Larraburu)
• The Biscets – Becase it’s fun. (Reagan Oliver)
• Turkey, ham, stuffing, corn, pie, dezirt. (Senijah Rawlings)
• A turkey with candy in it because I love turkey and candy. (Julia Tomaras)
• I would make cramberry sause because it tastes delicious! (Noah Jones)
• Bibles because peuple need them. (Garrett Chilson)
• I will make some macironi because it is my moms favorite. (Kyrenisha Wood)
Thanksgiving would be better if only…
• I could be famos. (Artela Aljiji)
• We would have school out for the rest of the year. (Mason Chiovaro)
• There was ice cream. (Annabelle Rumfelt)
• Great granny would feel better and remiber peolpe. (Allison Monfalcone)
• We had a bouncey. (Dylan Pardue)
• It lasted for two days. (Noah Jones)
• My Grandpa was there Becase he pasted away! (Reagan Oliver)
• If I could make everything it would be alsome. (Kyrenisha Wood)

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The Fluvanna County Board of Supervisors decided Wednesday night (Nov. 19) to learn more about implementing a business license fee.
Supervisors instructed Commissioner of the Revenue Mel Sheridan and staff to gather information on both a potential business license fee and a potential restructuring of the business personal property tax.
An alternative to the traditional business/professional/occupation license (BPOL) tax, a simple licensing allows tracking of new business starts in the county, Community Development Director Bobby Popowicz told the Board, and allows his office to disseminate information and opportunities to local businesses.
Businesses would be required to register with the county and possibly – though not necessarily – pay a fee. This would give the county comprehensive listing and tracking possibility, Popowicz said, allowing it to do things like create a local business directory linked to the county website.
The downsides to the proposal include costs, especially personnel costs, associated with implementing the idea. Even the highest fee Popowicz mentioned - $50 per business – would fall short of paying for a person to administer the business licensing. Plus, he said, businesses in the community may see a fee as the first step toward implementing the widely unpopular BPOL tax.
“At the business license level we will not make money; we will come out even,” Sheridan predicted. Supervisors will further examine a business license fee in January and a potential restructuring of the business personal property tax in March.

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An ad hoc committee commissioned by the Lake Monticello Owners’ Association (LMOA) Board of Directors to study the community’s wants and needs for upcoming facility renovations uncovered Lake residents’ top five amenity picks: a dining facility, a fitness center, a pub, a banquet/reception area, and a picnic pavilion.
The Board has committed to completing some renovations to LMOA facilities, particularly those having to do with Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) compliance. Still up for hot debate is exactly what renovations and construction will in fact take place, and the Board wanted the community’s feedback before making any decisions.
So the renovation/replacement ad hoc committee conducted two extensive surveys of the Lake Monticello community. The first centered on residents’ wants and needs for amenities; the second focused on how to pay for them. The committee also held four town hall meetings. It recently released its findings in a 153-page report.
Of course, the top five amenity picks aren’t shared by all Lake residents. For example, despite a potential fitness center’s popularity, the committee’s report says that the write-in portion of the survey contained “pervasive” comments that having a fitness center would constitute needless duplication, as three fitness centers already exist just outside the Lake.
And, as often happens, not all – or even most – Lake residents chose to participate in the surveys. Just over half of the 1,535 respondents to the first survey are retired, while just under half are working. Just under half had children under the age of 18 living in their home.
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Palmyra native Dustin Greenwood with teammates Adrian Adams and Nic Taylor.  The fourth member of their team, Alana Taylor is the first female driver of a  U.S. four-man bobsled.  Photo courtesy of Diane GreenwoodDustin Greenwood, a former Fluco standout athlete, hopes to ride his bobsled to the medal stand at the 2018 Winter Olympics.
“I want to be able to represent the Flucos at the games,” said Greenwood, who graduated from FCHS in 2004 and whose parents, Diane and Gary Greenwood, live in Fluvanna.
On Nov. 9, Greenwood was named to the U.S. bobsled team – with a special distinction: he is part of the first mixed-gender, four-man bobsled team to compete. The unique team has already proven its worth - they earned bronze and silver medals at Calgary’s North American Cup in November.
Greenwood told the Fluvanna Review, “Growing up in Fluvanna has given me so much… I can’t thank my coaches and teachers enough for helping prepare me for this road I’m on. Most of them may not realize how much of an impact they have had on shaping the person that I am today.”
His father admits bobsledding is a surprising choice for an athlete from the South more accustomed to football and track. “We didn’t see the bobsled coming,” Gary Greenwood said with a laugh. “It is kind of neat to see a kid from Fluvanna County succeed this way. Dustin’s story will let people know that you can come from any walk of life, and as long as you’ve got a big heart and work hard, you can accomplish your goals.”
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Photo by Jacki HarrisEvery cook has a favorite recipe – a good tried-and-true standby that’s requested at family gatherings or made for weekend comfort food. And often those popular dishes come straight from holiday menus, when food tastes twice as good because of the loved ones gathered around.
The cooks on staff at the Fluvanna Review took the plunge by sharing some of their favorite recipes – and not shying away from revealing the secret ingredient or technique that makes their food so good.

Stuffed ham
Jacki Harris, advertising/copy editor
To me Thanksgiving means stuffed ham. My mother gathers with some of her sisters and friends and they spend between four and five hours preparing the dish. They stuff a corned ham with a mixture of kale, cabbage, onions, red pepper and other spices. The result is a dish that is slightly spicy, salty, and delicious.
What’s the secret technique?
The ham isn’t just stuffed in the middle like a turkey. It’s the cutting and stuffing that makes the preparation last so long. They cut about 10 slits deep into the ham and stuff them full, then pack the rest of the stuffing around the ham. After that they put the whole thing into a cheesecloth bag and boil it for hours. After the ham – which is usually between 18 and 20 pounds – is stuffed and boiled, they divide it amongst the cooks.
The dish isn’t very well-known outside of the borders of southern Maryland and recipes vary by family and are passed along from generation to generation. Last year there was a corned ham shortage and all of the locals were up in arms. We ate our ham at Christmas instead. Thinking of my mother gathering with family and friends, laboring together to create a delicious dish, always makes me smile and look forward to my annual serving of ham.
Sweet potatoes with marshmallows
Page Gifford, correspondent
My favorite Thanksgiving recipe – sweet potatoes with marshmallows – was handed down to me by my mother. It was the butter and brown sugar that she put in it that really made it good. Between that and the marshmallows it would just melt in your mouth.
What’s the secret ingredient?
I add a little cinnamon to mine.
Roasted root vegetables
Tricia Johnson, correspondent
My favorite Thanksgiving dish is not one handed down through my family, but one I started fixing a few years ago when I became a vegan. I love roasted root vegetables for Thanksgiving dinner! They are colorful and aromatic and so very delicious – and I can easily imagine that something like this might have been served at the very first Thanksgiving. I simply toss cut up root veggies – carrots, onions, sweet potatoes, beets, parsnips, turnips – with olive oil and kosher salt, and roast them in a hot oven until they are caramelized and delicious. Trust me – cook them longer than you think they need, until the edges of the vegetables begin to brown – that extra time in the oven is imperative!
What’s your secret ingredient?
Lots of fresh thyme! Just strip the little leaves from the stems and toss them in with the vegetables.
Stuffing
Edee Povol, accounts/classified ads manager
First I cook finely diced celery and onion in butter, then I add two red apples largely diced. I only cook them for about a minute so they stay crispy in the stuffing. I also add walnuts smashed into small crumbles with a mallet, and stir them around for another minute with some finely chopped fresh parsley. When the mixture is cool to the touch, toss in a bag of unseasoned cornbread crumbles, poultry seasoning, and salt and pepper. Stir a large beaten egg into enough room-temperature water or chicken broth to soften the mixture to your liking. Either stuff the bird or put it in a dish and bake till crispy on top.
What’s your secret ingredient?
Definitely the egg. The egg is the glue holding the stuffing together. Plus, it allows the cook the choice of either stuffing the turkey or baking in an oven dish.
Baked squash
Christina Dimeo Guseman, correspondent
I scoop out an acorn squash, drizzle it with olive oil and roast it in the oven till it starts to caramelize. At first I tried steaming it in the microwave but the flavor is much better when it’s roasted in an oven. Then I mix it up with eggs, sugar, half and half, vanilla, salt, and butter. I top it with cold butter cut into brown sugar and flour and tossed with chopped pecans. Then I bake it till it’s hot through and crunchy on top.

What’s your secret technique?
Not being much of a gadget girl, I was tentative about embracing kitchen tools. But I love my food processor. It makes cutting cold butter into toppings or pastry pretty much effortless. I don’t have to work the ingredients as much so they stay tender. Plus, blending the squash with all the other ingredients in the food processor is hands-down better than trying to mash it up with a fork or even whipping it with an electric mixer. The finished product is completely smooth and very creamy.

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