Good Morning, Happy Monday and Halloween Eve Eve . . . know what we did this weekend? We started decorating the house for Christmas – STOP THROWING THINGS AT YOUR COMPUTER! Geesh! It works for us. I’m in the Christmas spirit already, after the start of the Hallmark Christmas movie season, seeing the decorations in the stores and getting my head deeply involved in the holiday food planning. I’ve never been into Halloween anyway, and to me Thanksgiving is the food kickoff for the rest of the year. It’s our big, blow-out meal we share with friends and family, but from then to the end of the year it’s COOKIE season! Woohoo! We will have pretty much everything except the tree decorated by the end of this week, which leaves us free to actually enjoy the decorations with any rush or pressure. Oh, and we DID get a fake tree for the corner of the dining room. I’m not big on fake trees, however this is a skinny tree that fits in the corner of a room that was not built with good lighting. Since it’s pre-lit we will be able to keep it up year-round, decorating it for whatever holiday we are having, which will give us some pretty light in the room without it being overwhelming. As long as the main tree is a real one, this works for us too. (note: I had to edit it to say Halloween Eve Eve because I had my dates all messed up in my head and was thinking that tomorrow was Halloween! Geesh! Thanks S for the heads up so I could change it!)
Verse of the Day
October 29, 2018
I urge you, brothers, in view of God’s mercy, to offer your bodies as living sacrifices, holy and pleasing to God — this is your spiritual act of worship.
Thoughts on the Verse of the Day
Because God went first and sacrificed what is most precious to him to save us, he can ask us to surrender ourselves to him. Only one problem: The sorry ol’ sacrifice wants to keep crawling off the altar. We must offer ourselves, our will, our time, our heart, our commitment, to God each day. Otherwise, the altar is empty, and our sacrifice is gone.
Food for Thought
History of Halloween – Continued:
Where did the custom of Trick or Treating come from? In the Celtic times fairies (or faeries) were thought to run free on the Eve of Samhain. Faeries weren’t evil, but they weren’t good either. They caused quite a bit of mischief. They rewarded good deeds, but were irritated if they were crossed. On Samhain they disguise themselves as beggars, going door to door to ask for food. The people who gave them food were rewarded, but those who didn’t were given some unpleasant trick in return. When we got to medieval times a popular All Souls’ Day custom was to make something called “soul cakes”, which were simple bread desserts that had a currant topping. Children would go door to door begging for the cakes, which was called souling, rather like modern trick-or-treating. For every cake given to the children, they would say a prayer for the dead relatives of the one who gave the cake. The prayers would help the dead souls find their way out of purgatory and into heaven. So, we can see where the history of going door to door asking for treats came from, but why did they dress up in costumes? The Celts believed that disguising themselves to look like the spirits who were wandering the earth that night would allow them to escape notice safely. As a part of this whole celebration, the Celts would bring home an ember from the communal bonfire in a hollowed-out turnip, creating a lantern that looks very much like a modern-day jack-o-lantern. We will learn about that tomorrow!
Hermit Day – What a great day to spend quietly and in seclusion! For some people being a recluse is a way of life – spending every day all alone peacefully with their own thoughts. They seem to prefer living away from crowds and the sea of humanity – and honestly I can see the appeal! So many of us lead such busy lives that the idea of being a hermit, even for one single day, is very tempting! If you are a hermit, celebrate that life today, and if you are one of the many people who crave a break from the GO-GO-GO of life, just chill out, all alone where nobody can find you today! Since I’m at work today, I’ll have to day dream about this one.
Internet Day – Since 2005, every year on October 29th we celebrate International Internet Day, to commemorate a momentous day in the history of telecommunications and technology. This is the anniversary of the event of sending the very first electronic message, which was transferred from one computer to another in 1969. Charley Kline, a student programmer at UCLA transmitted the first ever message. He was working under the supervision of Professor Leonard Kleinrock, and sent a message from the computer housed at UCLA to a computer positioned at the Stanford Research Institute. The message was a text message that was the word “login”, but as it happened only the letters L and O could be transmitted because the system collapsed and the transmission crashed. They were able to send the full message an hour later. Since that time the Internet has become one of the most important parts of our daily lives. Most of us cannot even think of spending a day without getting online. I did get a giggle though, out of all of this, because I learned where we got the word “Spam” for junk email. Some of you probably know this story – my husband did – but for those of you who don’t, you may get a chuckle out of it too. Back in the days just after World War II the word “Spam” only referred to canned meat. The word has been borrowed though, because today when you mention “spam” it’s safe to assume that you are referring to unsolicited email advertisements. So how did this change happen? It’s actually quite funny! Back in 1970, just a year after the first Internet communication, the comedy group Monty Python, produced its now famous Spam sketch. Check it out if you haven’t seen it yet. It’s pretty funny.
Jump forward to the 1980s. The bulletin board system services (BBSs) were developed by hobbyists to allow communication between people with common, and often, obscure interests. Some of these groups started Multi-Use Dungeons (MUDs) to play an online version of Dungeons and Dragons. It was in these groups that the Spam phenomenon began. Nobody is really sure who the first person was who used it, but someone created a keyboard macro program to type the words SPAM SPAM SPAM SPAM SPAM repeatedly every few seconds to imitate the Monty Python sketch. It became a popular way to shut out new members from a conversation and make them leave a chat room so the original members could carry on their conversation uninterrupted. It was also used to intentionally disrupt certain boards. Star Wars fans often entered Star Trek BBSs specifically to “spam” them. Soon there were other macros created that dumped huge amounts of text on the boards. These macros were all referred to as “spam” within the community. As the Internet grew and junk email became a common thing, it was an easy leap for BBS “spam” to lend its name to email “spam”. Today it has become a catch-all term for anything that qualifies as “Stupid Pointless Annoying Messages”. Pretty fun stuff to know!
National Cat Day – I love cats. As a matter of fact, I cannot remember a time in my life when a cat didn’t play a part in it in one way or another. There WAS a brief span of time between my old cat Miga, and my Pepsi cat, but that was a break caused by moving and needing to find the right cat for me. I still got kitty snuggling time over at my parent’s house, so it wasn’t like there weren’t any cats around. Today is National Cat Day and we honor our darling felines for all the reasons that they are sweet, and for the not so sweet reasons. As I type this my my Itty Bit is sitting near my feet talking to me. Well, she’s whining, but maybe that’s her way to talk. They make it difficult to type, but y she is so sweet that I don’t care. There are certain characteristics in cats that either endear them to people, or completely alienate them. What it comes right down to is that cats are independent, rebellious, aloof and completely wonderful. You can buy them all the scratching posts in the world, but if they don’t decide to use them, well – they’ll find something else instead – usually rugs, furniture or your favorite sweater. They aren’t doing it to be ornery, it’s just the way they are! I have been known to put acrylic claw covers over my cat’s front paws to preserve the parts of the house I don’t want them to scratch. They are sort of fun since you can get them in pretty colors, which makes for very festive kitty toes! Cats are extremely territorial and they don’t necessarily welcome intruders on their turf, so they’ll hiss and spit at times – it’s not to be bratty, they just are protecting their space! On the other side of that is the fact that your cat knows when you aren’t feeling well and they’ll snuggle right up next to you in an attempt to make you feel better. When they are all curled up and being given the love and adoration they crave, they rev up their little internal engine and purr loudly to let you know they are happy. These are the sweetest creatures in the world, until they aren’t . . . but that’s the way God made them, so I accept them the way they are. Snuggle your kitties today and let them know how much they are loved, because I’m betting they love you that much in return.
This Day in History –
1929 -The New York Stock Exchange crashed on what came to be known as “Black Tuesday”, starting the Great Depression.
Food Celebration of the Day –
National Oatmeal Day – I love oatmeal. To me, it is a very comforting morning meal, and though I don’t have it very often because of how many carbs are in each serving, once in a while I do indulge, because it just hits the spot on a cold day. There are many health benefits to oatmeal, in spite of the carbs, such as lowering cholesterol, reducing the risk of heart disease, reducing your risk of cancer, at least according to the American Cancer Society, it’s low in fat, low in calories and a great source of iron and fiber. I like mine with various toppings on it, such as coconut palm sugar, cinnamon, various kinds of fruit, like apples or peaches. One thing I really enjoy is steel cut oats, which can be prepared night before in the slow cooker, so it’s ready to go when you wake up. Top it with your favorite toppings and some cream, and have a delicious, warming, comforting meal.
It’s Monday, I’m off to work and ready for a new week! It’s going to be a great one. We will finish decorating everything except, of course, our main Christmas tree, which we won’t get until the day after Thanksgiving, and get ready for my uncle and aunt to visit next weekend. We always have a great time with them when they come to see us. Have a wonderful day! God bless you and I’ll see you tomorrow.
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Celebration list sources: