Our Lady of Consolation has been busy since Feb.

Georgia Wingate Thompson, Kleberg County Correspondent

Members of Our Lady of Consolation Catholic Church and volunteers who just love to do crafts have been meeting every Monday since February in anticipation of the 93rd Annual Thanksgiving Day Family Dinner feast and craft show.

Profits from the crafts go to the Women's Club of the Church to support the scholarship fund.

The church is located in Vattmann in Kleberg County five miles northeast of Riviera.

"It is all volunteers who show up from 9 a.m. to 5 p.m. every Monday," said Lupe Wruble. "It is never the same group so you never know who will show up. We have lots of fun and a nice visit."

But the ones that do show up bring food and the crafters break to enjoy a potluck lunch.

The ladies say they get their unique ideas from magazines and by attending craft shows, bringing those ideas home and putting their own touches on the finished product.

"We don't buy what we see because that would be too expensive," said Jan Yaklin. "We look it over and make it from memory."

Yaklin was doing just that with her unique windchimes made from numerous kitchen supplies, something she happened to see while in Arkansas.

All of the women have their specialties: Kathy Hubert is decorating gourds while Gwen Rudallat has been busy for the second year painting "cypress knees." Rudallat said she orders the knotty parts of the swamp growing tree from Louisiana, then cleans them by boiling them for three hours and soaking them in bleach to keep them from mildewing before any painting begins.

"It is quite an ordeal and takes many hours to make one," said Rudallat. "A knee is worth $20 before it is even painted front and back, then sealed."

The Christmas theme knees are one of the more expensive items at the craft store some with a price tag of $60 and up. One of the knees - a cowboy themed creation - will be featured at the annual silent auction.

However, the ladies were quick to point out that they try to have something for everyone in the Country Store.

"We have things for the kids beginning at 25 cents," said Rudallat. "And we want to sell everything because it doesn't do us any good to have something left over."

Shoppers will have six hours to enjoy the Country Store and the hospitality and good cooking of the families of Our Lady of Consolation Catholic Church on Thanksgiving Day.

The Craft Store opens at 10:30 a.m. and closes at 5:30 p.m.

All of the crafters advised shopping early for best selection.

Serving for the ever-popular family style dinner, which includes drink and dessert, begins at 11 a.m. and is served until 2 p.m. Cost is $11 for adults and $6 for children.

Carry out is available.