It is hard to believe that something as simple as laughter can do more than pills to make people feel good. It is a researched fact that laughter is the language of the young at heart.

True laughter is a prescription available at any time. Laughter's benefits show on our face, in our body language, and in the spring to our step.

Did you know that one laugh burns six calories? Laughing is jogging for our insides and improves the muscle tone in our abdomen. It simulates our immune systems as well as increases our heart rate and circulation. Laughing heartily 100 times a day can have the same beneficial effects as spending 10 minutes on a rowing machine.

Laughter goes hand in hand with being creative, too. People with a keen sense of humor are more creative when it comes to problem solving than people who are somber individuals. People who come to work with a sense of humor are more productive and more profitable than those who are "straight laced" business men and women.

I used to have negative thoughts about Halloween, but I have changed my mind. It is a fun thing and good for everyone. I applaud Ellendale United Methodist Church for providing a place for "safe" trick or treating. I had fun on Saturday night just watching the efforts that were made to make this something warm (though the weather was cold on Halloween night).

The kids were happy. I think there was less concern about the treats and more about getting dressed up and enjoying the fun. It gave me pleasure to see proud parents taking their children, costumed beyond cute, around the church parking lot. It made you feel happy to see the little toddlers and big toddlers too, dressed up and enjoying the night.

It was no small effort on the part of the Trunk Or Treat participants, but they seemed to enjoy greeting the kids and coming up with fun ways to decorate the trunks of their vehicles. One family even decorated their fish house with Halloween decorations. Pictures will long keep memories alive of the wee dragons, super heroes, dressed-up princess, cowboys, lady bugs and pirates, to name a few.

And let’s not forget the plumped-up gals with air-filled costumes that made you laugh.

It bothers me that TV horror has replaced laughter and the likes of Red Skelton and “I Love Lucy.” These children in their costumes didn't demean anyone. Sex, murder and mayhem was not a prominent part of the dialogue. There was a dignified humor that left you feeling entertained and put a smile on your face.

People used to find a great number of fun things to do instead of watching the stupid television commercials and all the blood and guts programs that monopolize our televisions today. I wish they would go back to producing programs like “Andy Griffith,” “Little House On The Prairie” and the like.

I remember the stories told about people going "yuleboking" and dressing up for Halloween parties. They went on hayrides, camping trips, snowmobiling rides, took part in horseback rides and rodeo events; softball games, golf outings and motorcycle rides to name a few. The motorcycle rides and such don't just benefit the needy, they benefit the riders too. It gives them something to do that is fun and provides opportunities to get together with friends that bring more fun and laughter.

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Birthdays and anniversaries : 

• Thursday, November 5th: Alyssa Hagen, Kerri d’Eustachip, David Wayne, Skyla Knudtson, Mavis Langlie, Chad Bratten, Allison Hanson

• Friday, November 6th: Brody Richards, Makota Grahm Misgen, Mary Ann Lund, Darlene Krohnberg, Dylan Paul Moen, Jon Beck, David Hagen, Doug Klemmensen, Lauren Jo Draayer, Chad Ayers, Toni Roberts, Taylor Roberts, Kellie & Ryan Benning

• Saturday, November 7th: Ella Dobberstein, Solveig Adelaine Mattson, her 4th birthday; Ava Leigh Wangsness, her 5th birthday; Alymra Seath, Jolee Johnson, Travis Diederrich, Linda Dobberstein, Scott Olson, Mark Sundwall

• Sunday, November 8th: Sydney Larson, Andrew Jensen, Brian Hughes, Burton Nelson

• Monday, November 9th: Phyllis Hagen, Tami Lund Wacek, Scott Coxworth, Jon Aronson, Kent Kruckenburg, Cindy Gould, Tim Westrum, Christopher Jepson

• Tuesday, November 10th: Elizabeth Benning (2011), Keith McDonald, Eric Anderson, Russell Reistad, Tomm Richards, Jennifer Zimprich, Jessica Kasper, Andrew Olson, Jessica (Johnson) & Dan Rebelein, Stan & Liz Reichl, Everett & Diane Jensen

• Wednesday, November 11th: Jason Tracy, Kate Laudon, Agnes Christensen, Ione Hagen, Dale Hunt, Paula Swearingen, Jennifer Jacobs, Dawn Diemer, Rachel Gould, Dave & Linda Brandt, Amanda Schimdt, Tory Lee Christensen

Make your special day be a day you'll never forget, filled with smiles, good cheer, and laughter!