I have to say, I LOVE the way brand new carpet feels under my feet. It is wonderful! I came home, and the house had a “new house” aroma to it, and a face lift that it needed! Hubby took the opportunity to touch up some paint that was in dire need of some help, and I can honestly say that it was a mental struggle to want to put everything back in place because it’s all so pretty just being bare and empty. There’s a lot of work to do in here, which I’m procrastinating for the moment, but I am also looking around and planning some re-organization and de-cluttering options. That’s always good, right? Instead of a spring-cleaning, things need a pre-Christmas cleaning.
Verse of the Day
October 26, 2018
All Scripture is God-breathed and is useful for teaching, rebuking, correcting and training in righteousness, so that the servant of God may be thoroughly equipped for every good work.
Thoughts on the Verse of the Day
God wants us to be prepared to do good works. Thankfully he gave us the Scriptures. Today we have the Bible translated into many different languages, dialects, and versions. Rather than a threat, this is a great blessing. But we must remember that the goal of Scripture is not to be learned but to be lived. God intended his Word to be practical truth — a gift that prepares us to do every good work.
Food for Thought
History of Halloween – Continued:
So, where did broomstick riding witches come into being used as a symbol of Halloween? One legend says that on All Hallows Eve a priest was walking down a country road when he saw bonfires burning up on a hill. He said that he saw people dancing around the fires wearing costumes, while holding shafts and torches in their hands. The moon provided a backdrop of light, and in that light, it looked like the people were flying in the air. He hurried to the village to report that witches were flying, and evil was present. It is assumed that the myth of witches on broomsticks flying on Halloween comes from.
All Souls’ Day is an observance that happens on November 2nd, celebrated with festivities and Catholic masses, all honoring the dead. Prayers are said on behalf of Catholics who are in purgatory. For those who don’t know what purgatory is, it is said to be the state of the afterlife that is between the living and other worlds, where souls must be purified before going on to heaven. The idea is that they must suffer for their sins, and that through praying and good works the living members of the church can help their dead friends and family. This flies in the face of everything I know from the Bible – as Christ died on the cross, and rose again, so that we can be cleansed of our sin by professing His name, confessing our sin, and accepting He is the Son of God, His sacrifice and inviting Him into our hearts and lives. Why some religions try to make things more difficult is beyond me, but whatever floats their collective boats. Back on topic . . . On Halloween of 1517, Martin Luther started to try to reform the Catholic Church, and ended up forming the Protestant church, which did not believe in saints in the sense of specific individuals achieving sainthood. Without saints there would be no All Hallow’s Eve, no Halloween and no parties, so in Britain, when a conspiracy started growing to blow up the English Parliament and King James I was stopped in 1605, it became a convenient time and reason to solve two problems at the same time. The celebrations that people were used to having were moved to November 5th and renamed Guy Fawkes Day. Wait, what? Who was this Fawkes guy? Well, he wasn’t too bright, and was an accomplice who became the fall guy (as an interesting bit of trivia this is also where we get the word “guy”) in a Catholic plot to blow up the English Parliament, which was Protestant at the time. Technically the celebration was supposed to commemorate the failure of this scheme, it was Halloween, bonfires were lit across the country, people made lanterns from carved out turnips and children were begging for “a penny for the guy”, with the intention to use the pennies to buy wood for the bonfire where they were going to burn Guy Fawkes alive. Well, that’s a bit of awful, isn’t it? The Catholic church realized they couldn’t completely get rid of the supernatural parts of the celebrations, so they started saying that the spirits being recognized were evil and associated with the devil, which is where many of the scarier images of Halloween come from – such as evil witches and demons. All Souls’ Day has become what it is today, especially in Mexico, where they celebrate All Hallows’ Eve, All Saints’ Day and All Souls’ Day as a combined observance called “Los Dias de los Muertos”, or Days of the Dead. They celebrate it primarily as a way to come together to remember their dead, visit and clean gravesites and leave fresh flowers. It is also marked by spectacular parades of skeletons and ghouls, and even a mock funeral procession with a live person inside a coffin. That’s pretty interesting stuff!
Frankenstein Friday – This one is fun! It is always celebrated on the last Friday in October and celebrates the birth of Frankenstein and its creator. Frankenstein is one of the best-known horror characters, dating back to the 1800s. I’m sure none of us can remember a Halloween season without the presence of Frankenstein’s monster lurking somewhere in the darkness. Frankenstein was “born” in 1818 when Mary Wollenstonecraft Shelley, at the ripe old age of 21, wrote the story “Frankenstein”. As for THIS particular holiday and how it got its start? Well this fun day was begun by a guy by the name of Ron MacCloskey from Westfield, NJ, in 1997. He obviously really appreciated the creative works of Ms. Shelley, so he picked this day to celebrate it, and because more people can party on Friday than any other day of the week, it lands on Friday! Smart man! Maybe planning a Frankenstein party would be a fun way to spend time with friends! Heck, I may celebrate this one by watching “Young Frankenstein” – one of the funniest movies ever made – in my opinion.
Howl at the Moon Night – Throughout the history of mythology the wolf has been a power symbol. They have been the subject of stories, art and even many song themes. Sometimes they are depicted as monsters, sometimes noble, but consistently controversial. One thing that is always shown, no matter the mood of the stories, wolves are always shown howling at the moon. Today is your chance to join them in how they celebrate the wild, as they howl at the moon in their wonderful and majestic way.
Mule Day – The first time I ever heard of this one was in 2014, and up until that point I had never given a great deal of thought to mules or donkeys. I admit that I think the miniatures and the babies are absolutely precious, but other than how cute they are, I honestly hadn’t given them much thought. There is a bit of fascinating history associated with mules in our country though, and today we’ll read about them together! Did you know that George Washington was not only the father of our country — he was also the father of the American Mule? Yep, that’s what several sources say! When most people think of George Washington, they think of what he accomplished as a statesman and a general. The fact is, he was also a farmer, and a very serious farmer at that! Even during his two terms as President of the United States, he managed to spend 434 days in residence at Mount Vernon. The soil at Mount Vernon was known for being poor because it had been depleted by years of growing tobacco. Washington was trying to change all of that by experimenting with different types of fertilizer, growing different types of crops, and rotating them. He changed the very nature of his estate, turning it from a plantation that grew just one crop into a farm that produced grains and other foods. Of course, in those days, farming depended on sturdy and reliable working animals. Up until this time Americans had relied on horses – which were fine – but Washington thought mules would be better. Mules tend to be stronger, live longer and have more endurance and resistance to disease. They are also able to graze on pasture land that wouldn’t be adequate for a horse. Their hooves are stronger, and it often isn’t even necessary to have them shod. There are even some people who think they are more intelligent than horses – I’m not sure how I feel about that though because I absolutely adore horses and honestly, I think they are incredibly intelligent! I’m sure all of my horse loving friends who actually own them will agree. But this isn’t about debating the intellectual differences between horses and mules, so moving on. . . For anyone who doesn’t know – and I didn’t – a mule is a cross between a male donkey (usually called a jackass or a jack) and a female horse, or a mare. Now, the opposite, a cross between a female donkey (a jennet -pronounced jenny) and a male horse is called a hinny. Hinnies and mules are almost always sterile, so if you want to breed the animals you have to start with a horse and a donkey. I didn’t know that! OK, now that we have the basics down, here’s where Washington got into the mule business! The donkeys that were already in the Americas were brought over by Columbus, but they were smaller and served mostly as pack animals and for riding. Washington wanted to breed bigger mules, but for that he would need better jacks. Well, in his mind the perfect choice would be the Spanish Donkey. They were large, powerful animals that would be perfect for breeding stock. Unfortunately for Washington, the King of Spain prohibited the export of the Spanish Jacks, but being a smart man who recognized the chance to score points with the leader of this new country, the King sent Washington a gift of two jacks and two jennets. They arrived on our shores on October 26, 1785. Sadly, one of the jacks had died on the way. The other one was named “Royal Gift” and was everything that Washington had hoped and dreamed he would be. Unfortunately, Royal Gift was completely unimpressed with the mares he was presented with and refused to mate with them. Washington had to resort to a little trickery, so he used the jennets to get Royal Gift’s interest going, then substituted a mare at the last minute. At this point, apparently, Royal Gift went ahead and did his duty and began the new line of mules that George wanted.
What I thought was interesting was the glossary of terms I found used for donkeys so I figured I’d share it with you: Ass – A member of the genus Equus with larger ears and smaller build than the horse. Group includes donkeys and burros but the term usually is used only for the wild versions. Burro – Small donkey Dam – Mother of any of these animals Donkey – Either a male or female domesticated ass Foal – Baby (either sex) horse or donkey Gelding – Castrated male horse or donkey Hinny – Sterile offspring of a stallion and a jennet. Horse – Means a horse, either a male or female Jack – Uncastrated (intact) male donkey Jennet – Female donkey (pronounced jenny) Mammoth Jack – Exceptionally large uncastrated male donkey Mare – Female horse Mule – Sterile offspring of a jack and a mare Sire – Father of any of these animals Stallion – Uncastrated male horse
Sizes of donkeys: Different breeds of donkeys are determined by measuring them at the withers. The withers are located where the donkey’s cross and dorsal stripe meet. (or where the top side of the neck attaches to the donkey’s back) Miniature Donkey — an adult donkey 36″ tall or less when measured at the withers; Small Standard Donkey — 36.01″ up to 40″; Standard Donkey — 40.01″ up to 48″; Large Standard Donkey — Jennets: 48″ up to 54″/Jacks: 48″ up to 56″; Mammoth Donkey — Jennets: 54″ and over / Jacks: 56″ and over.
I now know more about donkeys and mules than I ever did before . . . and so do you!
National Day of the Deployed – Today is a very important day. Today we honor all of the brave men and women who have been deployed and are either sacrificing, or have sacrificed, their lives for our country. We also acknowledge their families that they are separated from, missing so much of important parts of their lives. This day was started in 2006 by Shelle Michaels Aberle. She approached then North Dakota Governor, John Hoeven, to see if he would support a proclamation for this day. He was the first governor in the United States to acknowledge deployed troops by formal proclamation. The date for this celebration was picked because Ms. Aberle’s cousin was deployed to Iraq and this is the date of his birthday. To all of our troops who are serving abroad, we appreciate you, we support you and we know that we enjoy the freedoms that we enjoy because of you. Thank you.
This Day in History –
1825 – The Erie Canal opens, connecting Lake Erie to the Hudson River.
1881 – The “Gunfight at the OK Corral” occurs. Wyatt Earp, his two brothers and “Doc” Holliday, have a shootout with the Ike Clanton gang.
1825 – The Erie Canal opens.
Food Celebration of the Day
National Mincemeat Day – The original mincemeat pies of the 17th century often featured tongue, chicken, eggs, raisins and citrus zest. Today, they’re usually a combo of brandied fruits and sometimes beef. Quite honestly, the original contents sound pretty dang gross to me, which is probably why over time the entire thing changed. I’m not even fond of the current version, but it’s a lot better than the original!
National Pumpkin Day – If we look around us we can see that everything pumpkin is in the stores right now, and it stands to reason! Pumpkin is delicious, and it is their time of the year to shine. I’ve been enjoying my pumpkin spice mochas, and a few pumpkin creations are on my plan for this weekend. This is an easy one to celebrate and enjoy, so let’s get to it with a little information about pumpkins that www.foodimentary.com is sharing today. Did you know that the largest pumpkin pie ever made was over five feet in diameter and weighed over 350 pounds? It took 80 pounds of pumpkin, 36 pounds of sugar, 12 dozen eggs and 5 hours to bake! My question is, what sort of an oven did they use, and what did they use for a pie pan? I really want to know! And did they make it with a crust? Seriously! The information here needs a little additional tweaking! In early colonial times pumpkins were used as an ingredient for the crust of pies, not the filling – which makes me wonder what THAT would taste like and if they used it for the crust, what did they actually put inside the pie? OK, this could kill me – this whole not knowing the whole story. I will have to look it up, but there isn’t time this morning. Pumpkins were once recommended for removing freckles and curing snake bites. Since we haven’t heard this claim lately, I’m guessing it has been debunked. Now that you know these things, let’s celebrate this lovely golden squash and make something delicious to go with one of our meals today!
As much as I’d love to sit here, having fun looking things up and chatting at everyone, I need to get busy putting things away. If I hurry getting the things done that NEED to be done, I may have time to do something fun in the kitchen! It’s a dreary, damp and chilly day – baking sounds like it would hit the spot. God bless you and I’ll see you tomorrow!
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Celebration list sources:
www.verseoftheday.com www.brownielocks.com www.holidayinsights.com www.thenibble.com www.foodimentary.com