42 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 12-19-16

  1. Waiting for you Jo.

    I am reading a book called The Greatest Thing in the World..
    Here’s a QoD. What is the greatest thing in the world?

    Someone will get it right away.
    And if you don’t. When I tell you, you’ll say. “Ahhhhh”.

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  2. Hi, Jo. I hope things are going well in Australia.

    Both our girls spent last night at friend’s houses, so Scott and I had a leisurely evening and a lovely dinner together. He made Elk, venison and homemade yeast rolls. I prepared the sides. It was delicious!

    I plan on finishing up the wrapping this morning. Becca and I bought a lot of gift bags from the dollar store the other day–so it shouldn’t take me very long to complete the task.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. I get here early today, and I see 12-17-16 open thread thinking I beat AJ. No, he just forget to change the date.

    Last night the TV stations were scrolling the list of closed schools across the bottom of the screen. My school never called, so I got up and got ready. At 6:35 when I was picking up my phone to put it in my pocket on the way out the door, I noticed a voice mail. The school called at 6:30 while I was getting dressed. Our home phone rang a minute or so later. Second time in 13 years I was heading out the door when school cancelled. The last time I already had on my coat. Supposedly the wind drifted snow over some of the rural roads in the district.

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  4. Peter: I’m surprised y’all were supposed to have school today at all…Both my girls are out for Christmas break. Their last day was Friday and they resume classes January third. Becca attends a small private school, while Lindsey goes to the local public high school.

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  5. Lions International sends out a monthly magazine to it ‘s members. On the front of this month’s magazine is a picture of a Lion guide holding a pole. On the other end of the pole is a blind person. They went skiing together.

    That reminds me of something a lady said once.
    NC Lions have an annual VIP (Visually Impaired Person) fishing tournament on the outer banks every October. That is, we invite VIP’s to go fishing. We escort them on the piers, bate the hooks and whatever else needs to be done for them to catch fish.;

    One day, a local reporter, much as Donna is for LA, was writing about the event. She approached a blind lady and asked if she were afraid to be walking on the pier.
    The lady said, “Why should I be scared? I have the Lord on one side and a Lion on the other.”
    Her comment made the rounds among our clubs.

    Liked by 7 people

  6. So you all know that my family Christmas party went well. Mr. P took it upon himself to charm my Mean Aunt E. Like I said, I was told she was medicated and she was really nice both times I was around her this week. Yesterday I told Mr. P that IF his father in law were alive he would have been disappointed in him, consorting with the enemy like he was. 😉 Sad but funny when two siblings have that much animosity between them. I also enjoyed the interplay between my other aunts as they were talking about my Aunt V. (V is the oldest girl in the family. She was #3 in birth order so she has appointed herself the matriarch of the family). The rest of her sisters have taken to calling her Mother. (Behind her back of course). It is all done in great humor. I learned this when I told one of them that she has appointed herself my “parent on earth”.

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  7. That bird looks cold!!!
    We are warming up this week but this snow in the forest will stick around for a bit….they are predicting snow for Christmas 🙂
    Greatest thing in the world….love ❤

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  8. We’ve had a winter frost advisory from the CHP warning about the possibility of black ice until 8 this morning. It’s 29 degrees right now–which is very cold for us.

    I’m totally dithering about what to do this morning and now that I see I’m being urged to stay off the roads, I think I’ll stay home and try not to think how fat I’ll be by Christmas for lack of visiting the gym. . . .

    At the moment, it looks like I’ll drive over to say goodbye to Hillary flying back to Sicily this morning, visit the local kindergarten for a singing Adorable sighting and then spend the rest of the day–cringe–shopping.

    Among items on the list–ink cartridges. Sigh.

    At least I’ll be with my two youngest children. 🙂

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  9. LA schools are out beginning this week for Christmas break — oops, Winter break, I forgot.

    Michelle, thanks for your answer on the SoCal Gas issue last night. Makes sense now, kind of. I have another email this morning, this one with a graph instructing us on cutting down our gas usage. I’m already breaking the rules by running my clothes dryer this morning.

    It’s back to work for me today, sigh. But I suspect I’ll have to ask for more time off fairly soon again as the house work picks up. I don’t have to be here for the foundation work, obviously, but for the bathroom work inside I’d like to be “around.” Got a text last night from my cousin telling me not to get discouraged. I told her it’s all just taking so much longer than I anticipated, thanks to the detours along the way. But it will be worth it in the end, I just have to keep reminding myself it can’t get done in a week or a month or even 2-3 months …

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  10. School around here. We will probably continue as it gives small folk something to focus on for an hour a day. And fifteen year old boy has attendance finals on Tuesday this week though school ended Friday. That means he either missed too many days of school or he is flunking a class. He did not miss too many days of school.

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  11. So does Mrs. Cardinal look wind-blown enough? Those of you in California, the white slashes mean the snow is blowing horizontally.

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  12. I Corinthians 13:13 says that three things abide (eternally): Faith, hope and love. Faith is a vehicle for hope. Love stands alone. It is the greatest of all.
    I just finished reading a small book by Henry Drummond (1851-18970, called The Greatest Thing in the World. He makes the case that LOVE is the greatest thing in the world.
    Drawing from it, the main ingredients of love are:
    Patience Love suffers long
    Kindness And is kind.
    Generosity Love envies not.
    Humility Love vaunts not itself, is not puffed up.
    Courtesy Does not behave itself unseemly.
    Unselfish Love seeks not it’s own.
    Good temper Not easily provoked.
    Guiltlessness Takes no account of evil.
    Sincerity Rejoices not in unrighteousness, but rejoices in the truth.

    It’s a really good little book. I read it in one sitting.

    Liked by 4 people

  13. Advent – Day 19: The poem ‘Julvisa’ was written by Finnish author and historian Zacharias Topelius in 1887. Finland’s most famous composer, Jean Sibelius, set the poem to music in 1895. However, Topelius, although Finnish, wrote the poem in Swedish and it was not translated to Finnish until 1909. Since then, it has become one of Finland’s most popular songs for Christmas:
    I seek no gold or majesty,
    no pearl or shining gem,
    but Lord above, I pray to Thee
    for peace on earth to men.
    O Lord divine,
    my heart is Thine!
    Oh, let my thoughts to Thee incline!
    I seek no pearl or shining gem
    but peace on earth to men.

    Among the children, in our home
    give blessed harmony.
    The light that on the shepherds shone,
    oh, let it shine on me!
    O Word of light,
    O truth and might,
    oh, shed thy blessing glad and bright.
    O Word of grace and pardon free:
    Give peace and harmony.

    Let Christmas come to rich and poor,
    its brilliant light unfold
    and with the wealth of God allure
    to heaven’s streets of gold.
    I long for Thee,
    I wait for Thee,
    O Lord, I need Thy charity!
    May rich and poor alike abide
    in peace at Christmastide.

    Liked by 4 people

  14. Chas, if I want spacing like you wanted, I will push ‘enter’ 3 times.

    I have 1 Cor. 13 memorized and we are told love is the greatest. Problem is that we have people who worship ‘love’ as they define it and believe they accomplish doing it without the Lord’s help. They do it by combining all false religions. Nothing new, though, since that began in Genesis. It does mean telling others that, although, “God is love”; Love is not God.

    Love the picture of the bird with the scripture reference, btw.

    Liked by 3 people

  15. ann- Around here schools let out later than in other places for some reason. We only get 12 days off this year, since we always go back the Monday or Tuesday after New Years. On the years that the holiday falls on a Thursday or Friday, we actually get more than 14 days off. We make up for it in the spring as we are supposed to get out before Memorial Day.

    Liked by 1 person

  16. Chas- on a PC you can hit enter in the text box. I can also do it on my Kindle. Things don’t post until you click the “Post Comment” button. “TAB” moves your curse to the next link on your screen, which is the “Post Comment” link on my computer.

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  17. Last year I gave my mother-in-law photo cards for Christmas, all of photos I had taken in her yard: mostly flowers, but a few birds or other things. My sister-in-law leaned over and said, “That was a good gift.” All year long Mom has told me about people appreciating the cards she has sent, and when she used her favorite one at the very end (a goldfinch getting its summer feathers, on their bird feeder which is rusting and thus also two-toned), the recipient took out the paper lining on which she had written the letter and sent the card back to her with his own note.

    When my husband asked what she wants for Christmas, she said more of those cards; they don’t have to be flowers, but just more cards. Last year I decided to narrow it down by focusing thematically and giving her pictures shot in her yard (mostly flowers, but also a few birds, a chipmunk, and a squirrel). But if I don’t narrow it down, do I keep it to a theme? I thought about wildflowers, or birds, or birds and butterflies. If I knew she especially liked cardinals, I could even do a set of just cardinals. Or I could do a sampler pack, with a peacock or two, a barn or two, some birds, some butterflies, some flowers. It’s hard to narrow it down. Considering she isn’t sending them only to women, I’m trying not to make it overly feminine, but I don’t know what to do in terms of a range of cards to include. She does like birds–she has many bird-themed items in her house, especially in the sun room–so that one would be safe. I may go that route.

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  18. We came very close to getting a few Christmas turkey this afternoon, after visiting with my in-laws. On our way home, I saw at least one turkey (I just got a glimpse, but I think it was two or three of them) right beside the road. Well, turkeys sometimes run across the road, so you have to keep your eye on them, but this one did the unexpected and launched into flight. My husband took his foot off the gas and missed him, but just by the barest margin. I wasn’t sure until the bird was the other side of the car.

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  19. You have real talent with that camera, Cheryl. The cards sound like a great gift.

    Turkeys are interesting. I remember one fall in CT I looked out the window and a whole bunch of turkeys were in the yard. That was a little unusual because Penelope was a bird dog, so birds and small game tended to make themselves scarce when we were home. But as I looked all the way in the back, I saw a great big turkey sitting in the top of a thin little tree (not more than 12 feet high) just munching on red berries. It looked so funny because the turkey was much too big to be sitting on such a wispy branch. I kept thinking he would tumble right off, but he never did. And then, Penelope had to go outside…. :–)

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  20. Cheryl, The cards are a gift for your Mother In Law who is female. I would make them something she would like. I wouldn’t expect a man to pick out a feminine card to write a quick note to me so it is perfectly fine for your MIL to have feminine looking cards.

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  21. Of course here we have more of a year round schedule. Our June/July break is also five weeks long. Then we have two weeks between the terms. I like having so many breaks to get ready for the next term. It partially comes from having students from both sides of the equator. Some go home on this break and some return.

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  22. Chas, you don’t think “that” is another female cardinal? 🙂

    Growing up in Phoenix, I heard people called “snowbirds” all the time–that’s people who came to Phoenix for the winter to avoid the snow. When I was a teenager, some tourism bureau tried to encourage us to call them “winter visitors,” as snowbirds was seen as somehow derogatory. As far as I know, 30 years or more later they are still being called snowbirds.

    I’d heard there was a bird called that, too. Well, when we started getting juncos in our yard, I looked them up and saw that they are also called snowbirds. Since they nest in the arctic and seem to do really well in snow, I figured that is probably why they’re called that.

    This particular junco was moving around spastically and I didn’t know what he was doing, but I moved my camera to action mode and zoomed in on him and quickly got a couple of shots. From the look of this photo, I suspect he’s taking a bath, bathing with snow. Would that not make him the ultimate “snowbird”?

    If you can’t figure it out, his tail is pointing straight up, one wing is out to the right side of the photo, and just about in the exact center of the photo is his beak (slightly open). His eye isn’t easy to see, since like the bird it is black, but one eye is visible.

    All the parts of the bird that can be seen are black. All the parts that cannot be seen are white (including the underside of that raised tail). This is a male; they’re a stark black and white. Females are a dark charcoal and white, and also have some shading between the dark and the light.

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  23. My dad turned 87 today. We had a nice phone conversation this afternoon. He always speaks with so much gratitude toward God for the many blessings he’s received — long life, relatively good health, family…

    And we all are giving thanks that God gave us an earthly father like He did. A lot of things I’m treasuring in my heart about him…I am so grateful we still have him here this side of heaven.

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  24. Thanks, Kim. I’m just thinking I wouldn’t want to give her ALL flower cards. I make a lot of flower cards myself, but when I make one for a guy, I don’t usually do so. So I was thinking if I include a barn or two, that’s a good Indiana scene but also something that works for a man. But if I give her birds, that would work well for anyone, and probably that’s what I’ll do–she really likes birds, and I have the best selection of photos that work for cards among my bird pix, so that should work.

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  25. By the way, I should have pointed this out earlier (but I wasn’t around when the second female cardinal went up), but in looking at these, you can see an example of how female cardinals’ markings can vary quite a bit, though subtly–I didn’t notice such things until I started taking their photos. I can see two distinct differences in these two, and they might vary in the amount of red on their bodies or other points beside (the top one probably has more red). But notice that the girl on top has a bit of a black mask (not a pronounced one, but she has one) and the bottom one only has a tiny bit of black immediately around her eye. Some females have more black than either of these girls. But the top one is also a distinct visitor this year. It is more marked when I see her than it shows up in photos, but she has a distinctly two-toned front, with a lovely reddish brown on the top, and a pale belly that is almost white in some lights. She’s recognizable when she appears, especially from the front where the two colors seem to have almost a straight line dividing point across her body. The bottom bird has a more even coloring across her body.

    Last year we had one who was so dark she was almost gray-black, and another who had very distinct read eyebrows. Once you start seeing the differences, you can recognize individual birds. I have a hunch other birders are better at it than I, though. I’ve seen no difference between males other than sometimes one has more red on its back and another has some dark that’s almost black on his back. But it’s really only the females I can tell apart.

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