Autumn, Sunshine and Apple Cider! Some Things Just Go Together!

I love lazy Saturday mornings . . . um . . . afternoons.  The sun is shining, we had an easy breakfast of cinnamon rolls, bacon and coffee, are watching Christmas movies and recovering from our late-night grocery shopping trip last night. It was so much fun though – of course we always have a good time together, but it was great. Friday nights are an awesome time to shop, even right before a holiday. By the time we got to Costco most of the shoppers were heading out for dinner or home, Trader Joe’s was pretty quiet, we had dinner in a diner that didn’t have many customers at the time, followed by Walmart and Central Market – since both of those either don’t close or close at midnight, we had plenty of time.  By the time we got home, put things away and got to bed it was 1:00 a.m.  The result is I’m pretty tired, but we don’t have to go anywhere for the entire weekend! Which is pretty awesome.  We were going to go to the tree farm and tag a tree, but my knees and feet hurt enough from standing so much yesterday that I just didn’t want to go anywhere today. I’m sure there will be a perfect tree waiting for us the day after Thanksgiving.


Verse of the Day

November 18, 2018

Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light for my path.

Psalm 119:105

Thoughts on the Verse of the Day

God’s promises, God’s Scripture, helps us find our way in a pluralistic world of competing voices and lights our path in time so given to cynicism and despair. What such great grace we have to know God’s will in our own words! Now if we will only walk in the light!


November 19, 2018

Blessed is the man who does not walk in the counsel of the wicked or stand in the way of sinners or sit in the seat of mockers. But his delight is in the law of the Lord, and on his law he meditates day and night.

Psalm 1:1-2


Thoughts on the Verse of the Day

I get to choose which sources of information I feed my mind. But this privilege and freedom is also a responsibility. God longs to bless me, but that blessing remains dormant until my heart delights in knowing and doing his will.


I Am Thankful For . . .

Yesterday I took some cookies to the post office to mail to a friend.  When I got down there, I stuffed the cookies into the smallest flat rate shipping box they had, got it up to the counter and the guy there told me that if I could just reduce the weight by 2 ounces it would save me nearly half the shipping cost. Um . . . OK. He pointed to a place on the far wall that had non-flat rate packaging that I could use. I opened the box, pulled open the Ziplock bag with the cookies and gave him one, and one to the lady behind me in line, so I could re-package the cookies. The look on the lady’s face was awesome – she had such a beautiful smile and even giggled. Today I am thankful for the opportunity to once in awhile put a smile on someone else’s face. I know that sounds self-serving, but I feel like sometimes there is so much negativity swirling around in my head from life in general, that the chance to make someone happy with something as simple as a cookie is a good thing.



November 17 –

Electronic Greeting Card Day – Today is the day to send e-cards to everyone you know!  Many people love to send and receive them since they are fun, and many of them are free . . . a combination that fits every single budget. Of course, the drawback to sending the free e-cards is that you have to deal with a lot of pop-up ads, but they support the sites, which makes it possible for them to be free.  Hop onto an e-card site and send a few animated cards to some folks today – let them know you are thinking of them.  Now, to me this isn’t as fun as a real card in the mail, but at the rate that postage is increasing, and how expensive cards have gotten, I completely understand why so few people actually send them anymore.


Guinness World Record Day –  I remember sitting for hours and reading the Guinness World Records book, shocked by the lengths people would go to qualify to get into it.  Well, in 2004 the book wasn’t enough, and the Guinness World Records Day was set up, and thousands of people come together to celebrate the international day of record-breaking.
2004 was chosen to commemorate the year that the book became the world’s best-selling copyright book.  Amazing and awe-inspiring feats, from crazy bonkers to absolutely brilliant, are attempted by people everywhere so they can get their picture and name in this famous book.  So what records were broken just yesterday for entrance to these pages?

*   325 people have waddled their way to a new record for the largest gathering of people dressed as penguins – read more and watch video here
*  Hula queen Marawa the Amazing’ has led a team of ten in London to the world record for most hula hoops spun simultaneously – read more and watch video here
*  German daredevil Joe Alexander is celebrating two world records after setting new benchmarks for most darts caught by hand in one minute and most upright bottles walked across – read more and watch videos here
*  Kenichi Ito has broken his own record for the fastest 100m running on all fours in Tokyo, Japan – read more and watch video here
* Tim Wade’s attempt at the Most Consecutive Handsprings in Texas, USAread more and watch video here.
* New Yorker Scott Wiener takes largest collection of pizza boxes title – read more here.

Commenting on the displays of record breaking, Guinness World Records Editor-in-Chief, Craig Glenday, said: “If you’ve ever dreamt of getting your name in the world’s most famous record book, this is your chance. Guinness World Records Day brings together like minded people, whether they’re hula-hoopers, sword swallowers or penguin fancy-dressers, and it’s free and open to absolutely anyone.”  So, there you go!  Find a category that suits you and go for it!  If you aren’t wanting to break records for yourself, maybe just click on a few of the links above to see some pretty amazing pictures.




National Adoption Day –What a special day this is!  National Adoption Day is promoted and sponsored by a variety of child care and adoption groups.  According to the various websites of these sponsors, this day was created to finalize the thousands of annual adoptions and celebrate the families that adopt children.  It’s also important today to raise awareness of the tens of thousands of children who are waiting, hoping and dreaming, of being adopted.  Does the idea of being adoptive parents interest you?  So many children go to sleep at night, hoping and praying for a family to love them, for parents to guide them, and for a permanent, safe and loving home to put a sense of security and peace into their lives.  Children all deserve that, and so do the parents who have the place in their hearts and homes to welcome them.  If this is something you could consider, use this day to take the first step in the process.



National Survivors of Suicide Day –The Saturday before Thanksgiving is a day designated by the United States Congress to be a day for the family and friends of those who have died by suicide to join together for healing and support.  Statistically someone in the United States attempts to commit suicide once every single minute.  Someone succeeds once every 17 minutes.  Pause for a moment to let that soak in.  It’s so incredibly sad!  And for every single one of those successes, there are people who are left behind to grieve and try to make sense of the loss of the person they loved.  Yes, there are groups and organizations set up to help prevent suicide, but if someone truly has made the decision to take that step, no group is going to stop them.  Watching for the signs and getting help for the people we love who appear that they may want to do this is wonderful, always reaching out to them and loving them can definitely get through.  Praying for them and giving them reasons to live is exactly what we should be doing, but that number hasn’t decreased.  It actually seems to be increasing.  This day is for the people left behind, the people grieving and trying to make some sort of sense out of the people we love leaving us, to heal and move beyond the pain and live our lives again.  I have never lost someone I love to suicide, though I did have a young relative try, and I have a dear friend who has often thought about it.  Both have had their reasons, but thank God neither succeeded and have moved forward with productive lives.  It would have been so horribly senseless for either of these two lights to have been put out, and that can be said of so many who just can’t seem to make sense of it all and choose instead to end their lives in an attempt to end what they perceive to be a horrible existence.  I cannot imagine the anguish and emptiness that someone must feel to truly believe that the people who love them would be better off if they were no longer alive, which couldn’t be further from the truth. The empty place they would leave behind could never be filled, and life would NOT be better.   Be there for the ones you love, help them get the help they need to see that life is better with them living it.



Take a Hike Day – We all know that walking and hiking is a great way to get exercise and get in shape.   So, what’s the difference between a walk and a hike? Well, a walk can be taken anywhere, while hike is taking in the woods, hills, mountains or somewhere else in a nature setting.  You get the exercise from a hike, but you also get beautiful scenery that are relaxing to the mind and the soul.  I haven’t been on a hike for a few years. It seems like there have been constant, oddball health issues that keep popping up at the start of hiking season.  NEXT year though, I’m really hoping to hit the trails and have some fun, even if it is only for some day hikes, rather than overnight hikes.


National Unfriend Day – This one makes me laugh.  It was inspired by late-night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel. Truthfully it was probably the last time he had something to say that was worth This is the day when Facebook users should take an honest inventory of their friends list and eliminate the ones that really aren’t their friends.  Making these cuts simplifies your timeline and frees up your time to give to the ones you really want to hear from!  Win win!  You never know – they may have wanted to knock you off of their list too, but they just weren’t sure how to go about it!    It could be saving two of you all sorts of irritation just to take the bull by the horns and do it!



Playmobil’s National Day of Play – The 3rd Saturday in the month is National Day of Play. This day was created to celebrate imaginative play by children, with the imagination being a child’s most powerful tool.  Using the imagination plays an important role in the development of a child’s social and cognitive skills, their emotional abilities and with abstract thinking.  The first time this was celebrated was in 2010, sponsored by Playmobil, with events scheduled at several retailers across the country.  Today children and adults are all invited to take part in hand-on play time.  What could be more fun than that?  I know that when I was a child, as many of us did, we spent far more time playing than hanging out on the computer, watching TV or doing video games, and I believe that we were healthier for it!  I remember hours of fun playing dress-up with my friends, building “roads” in the woods with my brother, creating little communities amongst the trees and spending hours out there, until Mom called us in when it started getting dark.  I remember exploring the beach near our house for shells, wading in the creek looking for pretty rocks, and setting up cities with blocks in the house when it was too rainy to be outdoors.  If we tired of all of that, then we’d curl up on the couch and read to each other, or more often than not, he’d be doing something else, and I would lose myself in a book until I was nearly bleary eyed from it.  I still do that when I have the opportunity.  Make today a beautiful day of play.




November 18 –

Mickey Mouse Day – Wow! There was a LOT of information to sort through for this one!  And that is NOT an understatement!  Apparently, Mickey Mouse isn’t only the most famous rodent of all time, he has influenced MANY people and their careers in the 85 years since he first appeared on the scene, November 18, 1928, when he was in “Steamboat Willy”, though apparently that wasn’t his very first appearance.  No, that was in “Plane Crazy”.  He was also the first cartoon character to be honored on the Hollywood Walk of Fame!   I found a long list of things that can be traced, either directly or indirectly, to this very famous mouse.

* When Walt Disney came up with the idea for Mickey Mouse, he was low on funds, but full of ideas.  Mickey’s birth launched Disney’s career.

* People loved Mickey so much, that they would go to the theater, and if they weren’t playing a Mickey Mouse film, they would leave to find another theater. 

* “Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs” – In 1937 this Disney movie was a breakthrough for animated film, and for the time, the ultimate byproduct of Mickey’s success.

*  The name Mickey Mouse has been written down more than a few times by fed-up citizens who don’t like anyone on the voting ballot. 

*  In the 1940’s Disney hit a rough spot.  Fortunately, they had lots of Mickey Mouse merchandise sales to fall back on until “Cinderella” hit it big in 1950.

*  Walt Disney invented the American Theme Park with the original Disneyland.

*  The Mickey Mouse Club premiered in 1955, helping to shape the idea of the American teenager, giving them a new natural habitat . . . the rug in front of the TV.

*  Annette Funicello was the breakout star of the original “Mickey Mouse Club” and was Disney’s first teen queen.  Her success brought about “Beach Party”, a 1963 musical teen-vacation movie. 

*  Princess mania started with Disney – how? Well, with constant and prolonged exposure to Cinderella, Aurora, Ariel, Belle, Jasmine and any others from the 1990s forward, leading to an explosion of pink.


The list goes on and on, but there wasn’t any way I was going to give yet another plug to misbehaving EX-Mickey Mouse Club members.  We see enough of those folks as it is.




National Princess Day – This is only the 2nd anniversary of this celebration, and in honor of our special Princess B, I am happy to learn about it.  Apparently, this celebration is all about the movie “The Swan Princess” that was released in theatres on November 18, 1994 and introduced Princess Odette to fans all over the world. The series grew with the 8th movie coming out this past spring. I’ve never heard of the movie or the series but apparently of other folks did or it wouldn’t be so big. I don’t care much either way for that, but I do care that my beautiful granddaughter is all about everything princess these days, so for her I will gladly celebrate.




Push-Button Phone Day – Remember the days of rotary phones?  If so, then you are AT LEAST in your mid-40s.  I remember them, and how awed we all were with the push button phones.  Just about as awed as we were with having a private line and not a party line!  For anyone who doesn’t remember what a party line is, or even know what one is – well, I’m sticking my tongue out at you.   Sometimes I overhear teens, or even young adults, complaining over how long it takes for their parents to return text messages, and know that they would have “suffered” greatly in the rotary phone dialing days.  Hahaha and for those of you who are scratching your heads wondering what it was?  To use a rotary phone, you had to put your finger into a numbered circular hole and physically turn the dial in order to get each number of the phone number to go through.  Western Electric Manufacturing and supply Unit of the Bell System introduced the Touch Tone telephone with 10 push buttons on November 18,1963.  The service was available for an extra fee and was first used by businesses in Carnegie and Greensburg, PA.  I remember using rotary phones, so it must have been awhile before regular people started using the touch tone, and they were affordable for budgets that were tight.




This Day in History –

November 18, 1928 – Disney’s Steamship Willie premieres – Mickey Mouse is “born”!




Food Celebrations of the Day –                                     

November 17

 I accidentally posted today’s food celebrations yesterday.


November 18

National Apple Cider Day – Is there anything that resonates autumn more than apple cider?  When I think of fall one of the 1st things that I think about is hot apple cider, and I literally begin to salivate.  When did people start making cider though?  Well, historians pretty much agree that apple trees existed along the Nile River Delta as early as 1300 BC, but they don’t know whether cider was made from the apples.  I would imagine they did though, wouldn’t you?  Move forward a few centuries and we have the Romans arriving in England in 55 BC, and they found local villagers drinking a cider-like beverage that they made from the apples.  Ancient records say that Julius Caesar, and of course his people, the Romans, enthusiastically began enjoying the cider as well.  There really aren’t any historical records that say how long the English had been drinking the cider before the Romans showed up – so it’s anyone’s guess.  By the time the 9th century rolled around cider drinking was well established in Europe.  In 1066, after the Norman Conquest, cider drinking was so popular that orchards were planted with the specific intention of harvesting the apples for cider.  It became a very important industry during medieval times, with monasteries selling large quantities to the public.  Laborers from farms got a cider allowance as part of their pay!  English cider making reached its peak in the mid-17th century, with nearly every farm having its own cider orchard and press, but the industry started to decline because of major agricultural changes.  It regained popularity in the 20th century, but the demand was for mass-produced cider.  In recent years traditional cider making made a comeback.  Well, this tells us about European apple cider, but what about apple cider here in America?  Early English settlers introduced cider to our shores by bringing seeds for growing cider apples.  During that time period grains did not thrive very well and were very expensive to import, so that made the plentiful apple orchards, and the apples they produced, inexpensive and easy to obtain.  The result was that hard cider became America’s most popular beverage, with the consumption increasing during the 18th century, in part because of the work of Johnny Appleseed and his mission to plant as many apple trees as he could in the Midwest.  Cider began to fall in popularity when German beer and its faster fermentation process arrived to our shores, with large breweries producing large quantities of beer.  Apple cider production was limited to small farms, which made it difficult to produce in those amounts.  About the same time the Temperance movement started, and many church going families gave up cider, some of them even going so far as to chop down their trees.  That doesn’t make a bit of sense to me, since wouldn’t the fruit still be usable for eating?  Prohibition was pretty much the death knell for the cider industry at that point in history.  Today, with microbreweries popping up everywhere, we see traditional cider making becoming popular again, both here and in Europe.


National Vichyssoise Day – Pronounced “vee-shay-swah,” this silky potato and leek soup is traditionally served chilled, but it is equally delicious when hot.



I have to laugh. I started this a LOT earlier but have been happily watching Hallmark Christmas movies all day and time got away from me. I’d better start getting something done. There are pumpkins to slaughter, clean and bake! God bless you and I’ll see you on Monday.




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