103 thoughts on “Our Daily Thread 5-13+14-17

  1. Morning Chas! I’ve had my first cup of coffee the it’s off to work for me! That birdie up there appears to be singing “Ahhhhhhhh” in full operatic voice!! Have a good day ya’ll!!

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  2. Speaking of heading onto the fog, doesn’t it make sense to turn on your headlights when driving in the fog? I was amazed at the imbeciles I saw yesterday with no headlights and fog so thick I could barely see 100 yards down the road. “Oh, I can see fine,” they say. “But can others see you?” I respond.

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  3. Peter, the water droplets in the fog reflect the headlights back to the driver, further reducing visibility. What people should be doing to increase their visibility to other drivers in fog is turn on their four way flashers, which don’t interfere with the driver’s ability to see. When my father and I were driving to the meeting place for the team that we went to Mexico with, we drove through the thickest fog that I’ve ever experienced, and it was after dark. He put on his low beams, four way flashers, and drove with the edge of one wheel on the gravel at the side of the road. We made it.

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  4. Well I’ve officially run out of excuses. 🙂

    We’re off to the vet to see about adopting Fluffy. She’s a 5 yr old fuzz ball whose owner died and she’s been at the shelter our vet runs for about 6 months. We have to go in once a month for Gemma’s prescription food, and every time we’re there, Elizabeth and Fluffy bond a little more. She’s been in a cat display in the vets office but had no takers. The other day I went in to see her too, and she’s a sweetie pie, and she gets along with other cats.

    So yeah. A third (and final) cat.

    See ya.

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  5. Cheryl, can you come to my house and identify the birds in the yard? The crows we know–and wish they would fly back to wherever they came from– but there are flashes of red and vermillion out there I’m at a loss to identify.

    Not as many hummingbirds this year, either even though the bottlebrush is in full glory.


  6. I remember mornings walking in very thick fog to get to school. Eerie.

    So Linda’s cooking, Nancyjill is off to work and mumsee’s making her way through the fog to feed the critters.

    And I’m off to Hollywood for a very short visit with Carol who was released from the hospital yesterday. I’ll bring her the tool box from her dad that I’d been storing in my garage along with a couple of her old t-shirts and drinking glasses I also had for her in boxes. Heaven knows the staff will probably hit the ceiling as she already has so much stuff in her room — I told her she’ll have to bring it all in on her walker as I don’t want to be blamed. But I also no longer want it in my garage, obviously. The tool box is a keeper, the rest of it (in my view) could be pitched, sold or whatever. She doesn’t need a set of 40 everyday tumblers of various sizes from Newberry’s in Brooklyn, still in the original box.

    Read through Chas’ chapter mentioned above, I picked up on the phrase “be of good courage.”

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  7. One of my preceptors when I was in college grew up in Scotland. One foggy day, she was reminiscing about walking to school one day. There was a little ravine between where she lived and the school that she had to go through. It was foggy generally, but when she stepped into the ravine, suddenly she couldn’t see her hand in front of her face. She said she had to keep moving forward until she reached the other side and could get her head above the fog. It reminded me of the passage on fog written by a Canadian teacher about his travels in Manitoba in the early 1900s: http://www.gutenberg.org/files/6111/6111-h/6111-h.htm#link2H_4_0003

    I was warned at noon. “You surely do not intend to go out to-night?” remarked a lawyer-acquaintance to me at the dinner table in the hotel; for by telephone from lake-points reports of the fog had already reached the town. “I intend to leave word at the stable right now,” I replied, “to have team and buggy in front of the school at four o’clock.” “Well,” said the lawyer in getting up, “I would not; you’ll run into fog.”
    And into fog I did run. At this time of the year I had at best only a little over an hour’s start in my race against darkness. I always drove my horses hard now while daylight lasted; I demanded from them their very best strength at the start. Then, till we reached the last clear road over the dam, I spared them as much as I could. I had met up with a few things in the dark by now, and I had learned, if a difficulty arose, how much easier it is to cope with it even in failing twilight than by the gleam of lantern or headlight; for the latter never illumine more than a limited spot.
    So I had turned Bell’s corner by the time I hit the fog. I saw it in front and to the right. It drew a slanting line across the road. There it stood like a wall. Not a breath seemed to be stirring. The fog, from a distance, appeared to rise like a cliff, quite smoothly, and it blotted out the world beyond. When I approached it, I saw that its face was not so smooth as it had appeared from half a mile back; nor was it motionless. In fact, it was rolling south and west like a wave of great viscosity. Though my senses failed to perceive the slightest breath of a breeze, the fog was brewing and whirling, and huge spheres seemed to be forming in it, and to roll forward, slowly, and sometimes to recede, as if they had encountered an obstacle and rebounded clumsily. I had seen a tidal wave, fifty or more feet high, sweep up the “bore” of a river at the head of the Bay of Fundy. I was reminded of the sight; but here everything seemed to proceed in a strangely, weirdly leisurely way. There was none of that rush, of that hurry about this fog that characterizes water. Besides there seemed to be no end to the wave above; it reached up as far as your eye could see—now bulging in, now out, but always advancing. It was not so slow however, as for the moment I judged it to be; for I was later on told that it reached the town at about six o’clock. And here I was, at five, six and a half miles from its limits as the crow flies.
    I had hardly time to take in the details that I have described before I was enveloped in the folds of the fog. I mean this quite literally, for I am firmly convinced that an onlooker from behind would have seen the grey masses fold in like a sheet when I drove against them. It must have looked as if a driver were driving against a canvas moving in a slight breeze—canvas light and loose enough to be held in place by the resistance of the air so as to enclose him. Or maybe I should say “veiling” instead of canvas—or something still lighter and airier. Have you ever seen milk poured carefully down the side of a glass vessel filled with water? Well, clear air and fog seemed to behave towards each other pretty much the same way as milk in that case behaves towards water.
    I am rather emphatic about this because I have made a study of just such mists on a very much smaller scale. In that northern country where my wife taught her school and where I was to live for nearly two years as a convalescent, the hollows of the ground on clear cold summer nights, when the mercury dipped down close to the freezing point, would sometimes fill with a white mist of extraordinary density. Occasionally this mist would go on forming in higher and higher layers by condensation; mostly however, it seemed rather to come from below. But always, when it was really dense, there was a definite plane of demarcation. In fact, that was the criterion by which I recognised this peculiar mist. Mostly there is, even in the north, a layer of lesser density over the pools, gradually shading off into the clear air above. Nothing of what I am going to describe can be observed in that case.
    One summer, when I was living not over two miles from the lakeshore, I used to go down to these pools whenever they formed in the right way; and when I approached them slowly and carefully, I could dip my hand into the mist as into water, and I could feel the coolness of the misty layers. It was not because my hand got moist, for it did not. No evaporation was going on there, nor any condensation either. Nor did noticeable bubbles form because there was no motion in the mass which might have caused the infinitesimal droplets to collide and to coalesce into something perceivable to my senses.
    Once, of a full-moon night, I spent an hour getting into a pool like that, and when I looked down at my feet, I could not see them. But after I had been standing in it for a while, ten minutes maybe, a clear space had formed around my body, and I could see the ground. The heat of my body helped the air to redissolve the mist into steam. And as I watched, I noticed that a current was set up. The mist was continually flowing in towards my feet and legs where the body-heat was least. And where evaporation proceeded fastest, that is at the height of my waist, little wisps of mist would detach themselves from the side of the funnel of clear air in which I stood, and they would, in a slow, graceful motion, accelerated somewhat towards the last, describe a downward and inward curve towards the lower part of my body before they dissolved. I thought of that elusive and yet clearly defined layer of mist that forms in the plane of contact between the cold air flowing from Mammoth Cave in Kentucky and the ambient air of a sultry summer day. [Footnote: See Burroughs’ wonderful description of this phenomenon in “Riverby.”]
    On another of the rare occasions when the mists had formed in the necessary density I went out again, put a stone in my pocket and took a dog along. I approached a shallow mist pool with the greatest caution. The dog crouched low, apparently thinking that I was stalking some game. Then, when I had arrived within about ten or fifteen yards from the edge of the pool, I took the stone from my pocket, showed it to the dog, and threw it across the pool as fast and as far as I could. The dog dashed in and tore through the sheet. Where the impact of his body came, the mist bulged in, then broke. For a while there were two sheets, separated by a more or less clearly defined, vertical layer of transparency or maybe blackness rather. The two sheets were in violent commotion, approaching, impinging upon each other, swinging back again to complete separation, and so on. But the violence of the motion consisted by no means in speed: it suggested a very much retarded rolling off of a motion picture reel. There was at first an element of disillusion in the impression. I felt tempted to shout and to spur the mist into greater activity. On the surface, to both sides of the tear, waves ran out, and at the edges of the pool they rose in that same leisurely, stately way which struck me as one of the most characteristic features of that November mist; and at last it seemed as if they reared and reached up, very slowly as a dying man may stand up once more before he falls. And only after an interval that seemed unconscionably long to me the whole pool settled back to comparative smoothness, though without its definite plane of demarcation now. Strange to say, the dog had actually started something, a rabbit maybe or a jumping deer, and did not return.
    When fogs spread, as a rule they do so in air already saturated with moisture. What really spreads, is the cold air which by mixing with, and thereby cooling, the warmer, moisture-laden atmosphere causes the condensation. That is why our fall mists mostly are formed in an exceedingly slight but still noticeable breeze. But in the case of these northern mist pools, whenever the conditions are favourable for their formation, the moisture of the upper air seems to be pretty well condensed as dew It is only in the hollows of the ground that it remains suspended in this curious way. I cannot, so far, say whether it is due to the fact that where radiation is largely thrown back upon the walls of the hollow, the fall in temperature at first is very much slower than in the open, thus enabling the moisture to remain in suspension; or whether the hollows serve as collecting reservoirs for the cold air from the surrounding territory—the air carrying the already condensed moisture with it; or whether, lastly, it is simply due to a greater saturation of the atmosphere in these cavities, consequent upon the greater approach of their bottom to the level of the ground water. I have seen a “waterfall” of this mist overflow from a dent in the edge of ground that contained a pool. That seems to argue for an origin similar to that of a spring; as if strongly moisture-laden air welled up from underground, condensing its steam as it got chilled. It is these strange phenomena that are familiar, too, in the northern plains of Europe which must have given rise to the belief in elves and other weird creations of the brain—“the earth has bubbles as the water has”—not half as weird, though, as some realities are in the land which I love.

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  8. I know someone who has cats in the double digits. She really is a cat lady.

    I’ve always known my pet limits (through trial and error at times) — no more than 2 dogs (but two is optimum as they keep each other company); and one cat is sufficient, two cats if there are no dogs. OK, maybe 3. I’ve never had any more than 1 cat growing up, although my mom’s childhood home in Iowa was quite cat-friendly and welcoming to the the feline species.

    A cousin of my mom’s once said the thing that struck her about visiting way back hen were all the cats lounging here and there, almost like part of the furniture.

    I’d love to sell those tumblers and hand the money to Carol. My neighbor said she might be interested (they’re putting together a 2nd house in the desert right now) but I hate asking her outright as I don’t want her to feel forced to purchase them. I’ll hold a couple out and ask her if they’d be something she’d like (probably not 40 of them, they’re plain-jane clear tumblers), but maybe 12 or so?

    Or maybe they’ll let Carol set up a yard sale in front of the assisted living home on Franklin and Gower, in the heart of LaLa land. Someone might think they’re hip.


  9. Oh, I don’t want anything that special. I was planning to go to Target after Mother’s Day, just in case someone buys me a gift I can use (and NOT a kitten).


  10. I think it could be a Cat Fellow.

    We saw son the first day and evening and then he got on the road to see his friends. I am without a car. It is great to see him, but we have so little time together. I am thankful he has such good friends from Covenant.

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  11. Roscuro, that is the longest writing about fog that I have ever encountered! While reading I felt awed at the writer’s fluidity in going from one description to another and also quite lost in the thick of it! I somewhat expected some monster, man or animal, to be in there to cause a great scare.

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  12. Janice, there is more to that chapter. It was written by Frederick Philip Grove and it comes from his book Over Prairie Trails. Each chapter is about a different kind of weather pattern he encountered, over the space of a year as he traveled each weekend to see his wife – they were teaching at different schools. It is well worth reading, as you experience the journey with him. The most dramatic chapter is about him traveling during a classic blizzard.

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  13. Little Guy came home from school yesterday with little gifts & a card for Nightingale that he made in school. Made me feel a little wistful.

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  14. Nightingale has set up a YouTube channel for Little Guy’s videos. There are only two videos on it so far.

    This one (less than three minutes) is Little Guy giving a tour of their hotel room from when they stayed at a hotel one night on a little mini-trip during his school’s spring vacation. It seems to end when he says it’s the best hotel ever, but then there’s a little more. If anyone watches this, would you mind “liking” it?

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  15. Michelle, I have not seen a single hummingbird yet this year. If you want to get to know your birds, search for a book of “Birds of California,” and you can probably find a fold-out pamphlet and/or a book. I have some for Indiana, and none is complete and no two show the same birds–but I can get most of the ones I’m likely to see. For a more complete guide, I love Stokes Field Guide to Birds (I would use the eastern edition, but I have the western, too). Each page has multiple photos. It might have male, female, juvenile male, and the bird in flight, or even several shots of males from different angles plus one of a female and one of a juvenile. I have several other bird books, but those are the ones I consult most often. Yesterday I saw my first rufous-sided towhee; though I hadn’t seen it before, I’m familiar enough with the birds one can expect to see in Indiana that I knew it. I like the Indiana version of this one: https://www.amazon.com/Birds-California-Field-Identification-Guides/dp/1591930316/ref=sr_1_1/145-2531376-0500306?ie=UTF8&qid=1494702120&sr=8-1&keywords=birds+of+california+field+guide and also this one: https://www.amazon.com/California-Birds-Folding-Familiar-Naturalist/dp/1583551018/ref=sr_1_6/145-2531376-0500306?ie=UTF8&qid=1494702120&sr=8-6&keywords=birds+of+california+field+guide Neither is complete, but together they’ll have most of what you’re likely to see. I see there are also field guides focused on just northern or southern California.

    The first photo was a male rose-breasted grosbeak–stunningly beautiful bird, and my husband said they used to come to our yard (before we married), but this is the first adult male we’ve had in the yard. (I’d seen them elsewhere twice, and yesterday I saw some more elsewhere.) He has come several times, a female came once. I like this one because it looks like he is voicing a complaint or a request.

    The second photo is, of course, a robin among apple blossoms–a classic spring shot.


  16. Kim @ 12:05. Where do you find that stuff?

    I was twenty years old before I stayed in a hotel (or motel). Our plane caught on fire Cc-97)in Prestwick Scotland and we had to stay there several days. How we got to Prestwick is another story. It was a very nice hotel.
    Scottish girls are very pretty.

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  17. Nightingale is very smart with her money. She saves money for specific needs or wants, including for excursions with Little Guy. Then she does a lot of research, & finds great deals, ways to vacation on the cheap. (She had a Groupon thing for the hotel room.)

    Liked by 3 people

  18. Wow, Fluffy’s a rock star and everything. She really is beautiful. Will the grooming be an issue? Your other cats are short-haired, right?

    Saw Carol and dropped off her sets of glasses/tumblers and her dad’s old metal tool box from NY. There were some interesting (and seemingly ancient) items inside that could be worth money, I took a photo and will send it to a friend in town who does estate sales. Who knows?

    Even the box may be worth some $$ but it also, of course, has sentimental value to Carol.

    We didn’t talk about money, honestly she looked like a whipped puppy when I walked into her room. She just got home from the hospital last night and is in pain again (it’s her groin area and the doctors said it’s due to the huge hernia that is too risky to operate on). Poor kid, her health really is taking a beating of late. Her orders are to rest for a few days at home and not be too active.

    We watched the last part of an old Lassie episode (which was on when I arrived — it’s a former roommates TV that probably will be reclaimed but for now Carol has maybe 3-5 channels that come in OK). The show featured a very cute and adorable “Butch,” shaggy dog who was blind and got out of his owners’ farm and was in harm’s way the entire time, of course — until Lassie saved the day and rescued him. The closing scene had the owner, a kid a little older than Timmy, asking “paw” if they could let the vet do that surgery so he could see again. He’d only charge for use of the operating room & they could pay it off slowly. Pa said yeah, just this time he’d allow himself to take on some debt.

    All were happy, with Lassie and Butch snuggling with the two boys. Awwww.

    Liked by 1 person

  19. I’m trying a different way to link the video, to see if this will go to his YouTube channel, so it can be “liked” from there. . .


  20. Roscuro- It was well after sunrise when I was driving to work. I know low beams work best in fog at night, but in daylight it doesn’t matter as much. What matters is that other drivers can see you better if your lights are on. And, as Kathaleena said, some states require headlights in fog. Missouri, where I am, requires headlights any time you need your windshield wipers. That would include in fog.

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  21. That should take you to his YouTube channel. “Liking” the videos will help them get more interest, & you can even subscribe to help them out, too. (Though I really don’t think any of you would really be interested in subscribing. 🙂 )


  22. Little fellow seems to like his new room. The focus of the camera seemed more on the speaker than on the room, though. I wonder why that was.

    Liked by 1 person

  23. All sorts of things happen when I activate the windshield wiper. Because I don’t drive enough to remember which stick is the wipers. Which is why I don’t drive much.

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  24. Mumsee – As the one holding the camera, Nightingale was more interested in seeing Little Guy’s actions & reactions than merely showing a run-of-the-mill hotel room. 🙂 And she got enough of what he was trying to show us, I think.


  25. I can relate. The wipers and lights can be very confusing when you switch which side of the road you are driving on. Somehow they mix up the controls and I have to remember all over again.

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  26. Kizzie, I admit I don’t understand YouTube, but the video looked to me like something she created simply for people who know her to see her son. I don’t get why wider exposure is necessary or even something desirable. (Getting wider distribution of home movies of one’s child would seem more an invasion of privacy than a positive thing . . . but maybe I’m missing something.)


  27. Chas I grew up with my dad and my uncle seeing to my musical education. That’s how I have a song for everything. I was also a lonely only of older parents so I entertained myself with records I found in the closet.
    I was single for 8 years before I met Mr P so I spent a lot of Friday nights alone “Youtubing”

    Linda how was the food. You know I need a detailed report. 🙂

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  28. Cheryl – That video wasn’t originally made with YouTube in mind, nor the other one. She put them there to get the channel started, but has plans for the kinds of videos lots of kids like to watch.

    It may seem odd & boring to us, but there are a lot of YouTube channels with kids or families doing all sorts of things, usually involving playing something. Videos of these people playing video games are popular. (You see the play in the game, with the person narrating what they’re doing, or with them in a corner of the video.) There’s also something called “unboxing” videos, where a person (often an adult) opens a new toy, showing all the pieces, & how it might be played with. Weird, huh? But pretty popular.

    Some people even make some money off these things. There’s a family with four kids that Little Guy loves to follow. They have several different channels, but we usually watch FunnelVision or FGTV (in which they play various video games, or Pokemon Go). This young family is rich now! Their house is amazing. (And I have to admit, the videos can be entertaining, although the dad’s exuberance can get annoying at times.)

    Anyway, Nightingale doesn’t think they’ll ever get rich doing this, but Little Guy is interested in making his own videos, & she thought it would be a fun activity for them. So it’ll be exciting for them if they get likes, or people subscribing who are not relatives.

    Liked by 2 people

  29. Actually, Nightingale doesn’t think they’ll ever get to the point of making any money at all, let alone getting rich. We don’t even know how those people make money from their videos.


  30. Everyone can make a video. Linda sent us one of Chuck playing “Knick-nack” with his grandson, Charlie.

    If you’re a mother, this is your day.
    Except for Jo. It’s over.

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  31. Actually, quite a few people don’t think about Mother’s Day at all. I don’t think much about it as my mother passed away about thirty five years ago. If my children choose not to acknowledge it (and many don’t) that is fine with me. It is a made up holiday that causes a lot of grief.

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  32. Happy Mother’s Day to all the moms here. 🙂 I picture you all getting served wonderful breakfasts in bed by smiling children or being taken out to a lavish dinner later tonight. Right?

    It can be an awkward day, but I think churches are doing it better (I still remember a former church that had all the moms stand for applause — leaving me and all the children and men seated; yeah, awkward 🙂 ). My current church hands out carnations to all the women coming in, though many of us pass ours on to moms who wind up having a nice collection of them if they’re sitting around many of us non-moms 🙂 . And as we’re not a church that pays attention to secular holidays in the service itself, we don’t get a “Mother’s Day sermon,” thankfully.

    This was an interesting piece shared by Michelle (and then me) on FB last night:


    (Author is Karen Swallow Prior, a professor of English at Liberty University and a research fellow with the Ethics and Religious Liberty Commission of the Southern Baptist Convention. She is the author of “Fierce Convictions: The Extraordinary Life of Hannah More.”)

    How churches can honor mothers without alienating the childless


    “All women are mothers,” someone recently posted on Twitter, a statement that struck me immediately as well-meaning but misguided.

    All women are not mothers, just as certainly as all men are not fathers. And I say this as a childless woman who occasionally finds Mother’s Day uncomfortable since I very much wanted to have children.

    Yes, I understand the idea uses the term “mother” metaphorically, in the general sense of someone who is nurturing and creative. But I think that’s a problem, for at least two reasons.

    First, saying that all women are mothers minimizes the significance of, well, actual mothers. Even using that term loosely — as a professor, I embrace the mothering role I sometimes play in the lives of my former students, for example — but mother” simply is not synonymous with “woman.”

    Second, it threatens the notion that women can contribute significantly to the world in ways other than being a mother. And the women who feel the pain of childlessness more intensely on Mother’s Day need to be encouraged that motherhood is not the only way to an abundant and fulfilling life.

    Things can get a little sticky for some of us when Mother’s Day rolls around, a tension that increases within contexts that emphasize the role of motherhood as part of a religious tradition, especially my own evangelical tradition, which particularly cherishes the role of motherhood. …

    … In fact, a brief look at history shows that childlessness can be used by God for significant contributions to Christianity. I have only recently come to see that childlessness can be for some women a calling, and I look to the example of seven childless women who were important to the Christian church and to the world.

    For example, most Jane Austen fans know that she was the daughter of an Anglican clergyman and never married. Less understood is how Austen’s solid and ever-increasing Christian faith heavily informed all of her works. While the surface concerns of her novels are love and romance, the worldview underlying Austen’s views on marriage, family, and society is thoroughly Christian, grounded in the conviction that there is such a thing as objective truth that we should all strive to know while exemplifying Christian virtues such as patience, humility, and kindness.

    Another example of a woman whose childlessness allowed her to bring the world other gifts was a contemporary of Austen’s: Hannah More. As I wrote in a biography on the 18th-century English writer, reformer, and abolitionist, after breaking off a long engagement, More used the financial resources she gained from a settlement given to her by her former suitor to pursue a successful writing career. Motivated by her Christian faith, More turned her pen to the cause of abolition and other social reforms. Living a long life as a single woman (she died at age 88), More helped bring about countless improvements in British society, from teaching children of the poor to read, to reforming female education and eventually helping to end the slave trade. She died a wealthy philanthropist who willed her considerable wealth upon her death to more than 200 missionary and educational charities, some of which still exist today. …

    … Henrietta Mears was a leading figure in the Sunday School movement that profoundly shaped the 20th-century church. Mears never married or had children, but as director of Christian education at First Presbyterian Church in Hollywood she shaped the Christian education of thousands of people, including the famous evangelist Billy Graham.

    The Catholic writer Flannery O’Connor, who contracted lupus in her 20s and fought the debilitating illness the rest of her life before dying at age 39 in 1964, never married. Her scathing and brilliant short stories and novels exposed the hypocrisy and blindness of what she called the “Christ-haunted” South, characterized by a Christianity that was more cultural then genuine. It was an indictment that extended by implication to the entire modern, in-name-only church. O’Connor’s sacramental vision, shown in her fiction, letters, and prayer journal, continues to inspire powerfully Christian artists, readers, and thinkers today.

    And then we all remember how Rosa Parks’s simple, heroic act in refusing to give up her bus seat to a white person rippled across the nation. But it’s important to remember that Parks acted, not just a citizen and not just as an African American woman, but as a member of her church. …

    … These women were not mothers. Just like countless other women are not mothers. Just like I am not a mother. Their childlessness is part of their stories — and this fact needs to be told when we remember them.

    All women are not mothers. We honor women who are mothers by recognizing just how singular and significant that particular role is. And we honor women who aren’t mothers by recognizing that a woman doesn’t have to be a mother to contribute meaningfully to the world.

    And there is no place better equipped than a church that can model a robust community in which separate and distinct callings can flourish side by side.

    Liked by 1 person

  33. Well, DJ, not exactly. I went out and did the chores, came in and fixed myself a bowl of oatmeal and made out the chore list for the little folk to see when they got up. I was delighted to find one had purchased a packet of zucchini seeds for me and another had purchased carrot seeds. They will help me plant them later, possibly this afternoon. And we will have the gifts that keep on giving. But they are most likely the only ones who will acknowledge the day of those living at home. A few of the out of the nest group will call or will have sent something, and the rest will go on about their days.

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  34. Memory from when I was maybe 10 or 11 years old and in my clueless tomboy phase …

    Got up early one Sunday morning and realized my mom was in a pretty lousy mood, stomping back to bed wordlessly. Huh. What gives? I asked my dad. He was the first to figure it out. “We forgot to get anything for Mother’s Day.” Oh. That’s today?

    “We’d better do something,” my dad said, pondering how to make it right.


    So we jumped in the car and went down to buy some flowers that would be waiting for her when she got up again.

    It helped, and that was a faux pas we never committed again. 🙂 Mother’s Day was a very big deal in the 1960s.

    Guess I thought it was for moms of little kids and that our family had “outgrown” the tradition. Or maybe I just wasn’t thinking at all. Like I said, I was pretty clueless during those years, my nose always in the newspaper’s sports page baseball stats when I wasn’t out riding my bike to the freeway construction site or playing baseball with my tomboy girlfriends and a couple of the boys in the neighborhood.

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  35. Young children do not remember the day, it is up to dad or mom or teacher to prompt it. Older children have come to rely on dad or mom or teacher so they don’t remember. Still older people have moved on in their lives and are often busy with their own children or jobs or activities and require the advertisement people to remind them. I think we should just let it go.

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  36. Back to kids and YouTube videos …

    I do have a complaint. I’ve watched two videos in recent weeks to get information — one on a vacuum cleaner for hard floors I’m considering purchasing and the most recent on how to take down a wire dog crate.

    Both of them are done by a parent (or grandparent) with screaming kids taking part in the process. I guess it’s seen as cute, but honestly it makes me want to shoot one of them (sorry, I know it’s Mother’s Day and all but …). You can’t get the information you want without having to put up with the screaming, distracting antics of these show-off kids. I keep thinking “put the kids away somewhere and get back to what I’m watching this video for!” Argh.

    OK, rant over. Here’s the most recent one:


  37. Gemma hissed, Mouse ran and hid, and Fluffy just sat there. 🙂

    After the initial introduction we put Fluffy in “Liz’s room. Then Mouse and Gemma climbed in the crate to sniff it. And I keep catching Mouse sniffing at the crack at the bottom of the door. She knows that cat’s in there. 🙂

    Fluffy has made herself right at home. She’s eaten, used her litter box, and spent the night on the futon with ‘Liz. She has been loving everything (rubbing/scenting against the bed, bookcase, some books, a box, etc..) and everyone who ventures in. She has claimed the futon.

    And yeah, she’ll need brushing.

    Liked by 3 people

  38. I think it’s cute when Rudy does the rubbing/scenting thing against Heidi, like he’s saying, “This is my dog.”


  39. They mentioned Mothering Sunday as practiced in England this morning. It was the fourth Sunday in Lent, and it was a day people would return to the church into which they were born, while servants would get the day off to go and visit their mothers – for the domestic servant, such a day would be a significant event. I was in tears during the service this morning, but that is because the concern and stress of the past couple of weeks for my own mother has made me miss her keenly. We talk every night, but that isn’t enough sometimes. Also, I miss my small nieces and nephews, who are growing and changing so fast. It is tempting to feel left out on a day like today, or a day like Valentine’s, but isn’t that what the world does – makes a victim out of all those who are excluded from a category and campaigns to eliminate the differences. To quote from a Pixar movie ‘The Incredibles’, where the mother tells her son “Everyone’s special”, he replies, “Which is another way of saying no one is.” If everyone were a mother, there would be nothing special about being a mother. And being a mother is special. I’ve watched enough women give birth and seen the look on their face as they see the child to know it is special. Just as I don’t want to be consoled for the lack of a husband by being told that marriage isn’t all that great, so I do not want to be consoled for not being a mother by being told motherhood isn’t anything in particular. Let me hurt for the thing I would like and cannot have at this time. I can deal with the pain. But don’t pretend there isn’t any reason for me to hurt.

    Liked by 5 people

  40. Also, I rejoice that my own mother has this day, as she will be spending it with second and youngest sibling and their families. After all that she has been through in this past couple of weeks (she was fighting back tears last Sunday) for her to be surrounded by the people she loves is the best way she could spend the day.

    Liked by 3 people

  41. I’m glad to hear that your mom is having a respite from her care-giving. I’ve been concerned for her.

    Towards the end of my time taking care of my MIL, as her health & strength deteriorated, I was worn down. But I was younger then. I can’t imagine doing the same kind of thing now. God bless your mom.

    Liked by 1 person

  42. Wow, so this is a celebration day for AJ, also sort-of like Father’s Day with Fluffy. ?

    Meanwhile, my cat lady friend adopted another feral kitten today as well. I confess I don’t “get” having (I kid you not) more than 2 dozen cats, but she sees it as her mission in life I suppose (she’s not a believer from what I can tell, though I think she thinks she is after having grown up in the Methodist church and her brother becoming a Methodist minister — she thinks church is filled with hypocrites, however, so she won’t darken the door of one of those again in her lifetime).

    We’re taking a break from Romans and beginning a series of Jesus’ high priestly prayer in John 17. We got through verse 1 today. 🙂

    Our pastor is going to Thailand in June to teach a seminary course to pastors from mainland China (these are pastors of the house churches that aren’t so popular with the government, so it’s better if they fly to Thailand, though they have little money so we’ll be taking up a collection at our church).

    Liked by 2 people

  43. I was talking to a friend after church today but she kept casting her eyes around the sanctuary, which she often does when we talk — like she’s looking for the person she’d really rather be talking to. That’s not true, I know, she probably has to hand something off to someone or otherwise connect with someone before they leave. Still, kind of a pet peeve of mine (and she’s not the only one who does that) when people can’t pay attention in a one-to-one conversation.

    I finally just said, “Well (really thinking ‘never mind’), I’ve gotta go” and she said “Oh, what are you doing today?” “Cleaning house, see ya.” 🙂 She smiled and said OK, Bye. My exciting life (and conversationalist skills too, apparently).

    Liked by 2 people

  44. My ereader is toast. It has lasted nearly five years, so it had a good run, but the face somehow cracked. It seems like it happened spontaneously, as it was fine when I picked it up to read, but when I turned it on, I discovered that half the reading space wasn’t changing the picture it had when it was turned off, and it looked like hairline cracks around the part that wasn’t changing.


  45. Sad about the e-reader. Guess nothing lasts forever, but 5 years isn’t that long.

    FB publishes your ‘memories’ from time to time, old posts from a few years back.

    This was from 5 years ago after our landslide which made a certain surviving tree very popular.

    Liked by 2 people

  46. The new header: downy woodpeckers, of course. I like this one, partly because it was an unexpected shot. We have two suet feeders up now, and this one is hung so that I can often get a photo of a bird on the feeder with a background of grass or snow rather than tree limbs and garage. (Since it hangs down quite far from the tree, what background I get partly depends on how the wind is blowing.)

    This particular day, I was at the window with my camera and saw there were three downy woodpeckers in the tree. Well, males can often be fairly aggressive, chasing off another male even if each has its own feeder, and I’ve also seen a male chase a female or a female chase another female. So three of the same species during the springtime season of aggression meant I had a chance to get some decent chase scenes. (In winter, if birds are hungry enough, you might get two of the same species feeding fairly close together. Their hormones are turned down, with their sex organs literally shrunk for the winter when they don’t need them, but also they don’t want to waste so much energy chasing others when they need food. So they feed next to each other uneasily, but they feed next to each other nonetheless.)

    I turned the camera on action mode and focused on the right feeder, this one. A female landed (I couldn’t see that she was a female, but from photos I see she is.) I watched the tree above the feeder, and when the bird in it took off to go to the feeder, I hit the button, expecting to get a blur of birds as the one presently on it either fought to keep its spot or took off and left the feeder to its rival. Instead, the bird landed peacefully, as seen in this shot, and both birds fed. It is evidently a mated pair. The third bird landed on the other feeder, and apparently this pair found the other bird no threat, for all three fed peacefully, in spring, and I didn’t get my argumentative shot at all. But I did get a sweet action shot here, and some shots of both birds feeding.


  47. Oh, I also like it that the male is very much the center of interest of the photo. The female is there, but her eye is in the shade (his is highlighted), and he is in action and has a red splash of color, which he is raising to make sure everyone sees it.


  48. Is it AJ’s birthday? Or is that just a rumor? No fake news here, please!

    But just in case: ¡Feliz cumpleaños, El Verdadero! (That means “the real/true one”.)

    Liked by 1 person

  49. I was musing this morning that I would guess Mother’s Day brings more pain than joy. We have those who don’t have children but badly want them (unmarried, infertile, children have all died, etc.), people with bad relationships with their mothers, and mothers who long for “more” than their children are willing or able to give.

    I think the whole thing of it being an “expectation” is bad. It’s good for children to honor their parents. It’s bad for parents (and spouses) to be in the place of “expecting” such honor, and expecting it to come at a certain time and in a specific form, and it’s bad that so many childless people or people with bad family relationships get crushed in the middle.

    I got a card from one girl, a card and nice chocolate from the other. We spent the afternoon with my mother-in-law and gave her a card and a gift card. So it has been a low-key but nice day. But I think if I had the power to wave my hand and simply banish the holiday, with its expectations and sorrows, I would.

    Liked by 2 people

  50. Cheryl, one could say that being alive brings more pain than joy. The years people’s bodies disintegrate are more than the years growing – it only takes twenty years to grow up, but thirty to forty years to age. Yet we still celebrate birthdays and take time to tell children about the day they were born. Marriage brings at least as much sorrow as joy, yet we do not tell those who celebrate weddings and anniversaries to tone down their joy because of all the people who are widowed or divorced or single. I realized something, watching how much joy the people in the village would take in any celebratory event – I realized that the harder a person’s life is, the more they take joy in celebrations. The people I watched dancing at a wedding, most of them had lost children to disease, were work worn, and had an uncertain supply of food and clothing, yet they seized the moment. We Westerners have forgotten how to have fun, since we whine so much about how special days make us feel bad or are unnecessary.


  51. I hope my tears in church didn’t make any mother there feel bad. After all, we are told to rejoice with those who rejoice and weep with those who weep. The one should not negate the other. We should be able to have both tears and laughter in the Church, simultaneously.

    Liked by 4 people

  52. Sing unto God, sing praises to his name: extol him that rideth upon the heavens by his name Jah, and rejoice before him.
    A father of the fatherless, and a judge of the widows, is God in his holy habitation.
    God setteth the solitary in families: he bringeth out those which are bound with chains: but the rebellious dwell in a dry land. (Psalm 68:4-6)


  53. Oh no, this ain’t my kitty. This is Elizabeth’s baby. Mouse is mine, and Gemma is Cheryl’s.

    I told Cheryl I think we’re doing this wrong. It’s my birthday, and Mother’s Day, yet ‘Liz got the big present. I don’t think that’s how this is supposed to work. 😕

    Liked by 6 people

  54. The gaggle of grandchildren have all arrived next door. “Gran-ma!!” 🙂

    We’re off the dog park after I took a wonderfully long nap and dreamed (again) about my mythical upstairs, the place with the wide-open spaces, beautiful wood floors and at least one fireplace. In the dream, Real Estate Pal was suggesting we go work on that next. NOOOoooo!

    Meanwhile, our LA jacarandas are bursting forth. I’ll take some photos soon and send them in. The city is awash in purple.

    Liked by 2 people

  55. The new photo is showing more action at the sunflower feeder. The grosbeak (same bird as before) is sitting there, a house sparrow is off at the right, and a house finch is coming in at the left. All of these birds are males.


  56. I have had a relaxing day…my kids know I do not like this “holiday”…I received flowers from each of my three girls and a FB post from my son…
    Of all the Mom’s I have spoken with this weekend about this day, not one of them likes the recognition…painful, pain, overblown, unrealistic expectations…one friend booked a room at a local hotel to escape from her family…she explained it was a Mother’s Day gift to herself… 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  57. Roscuro, absolutely I wouldn’t say “Scale it back so people who aren’t included don’t feel bad.” I’ve had times when it made me cry to look at a mother with a new baby, and I learned not to look so long that the loving look turned into a yearning look and covetousness. But babies are joyful, and we shouldn’t hide them from women who can’t have any, nor do we avoid celebrating an anniversary around single people or singing happy birthday to an old man when other people haven’t lived so long. Etc.

    Two points I would make: (1) Even though I am now finally married with kids, I’m glad to be in a church that virtually ignores Mother’s Day. (Some of the women say “Happy Mother’s Day” to each other, and our pastor made one mention early in the service.) It isn’t a “church” event. (2) I don’t like the “expectation” of it. I was delighted when my husband and I came home yesterday and a box of fine chocolates and a card sat on my computer keyboard. I hadn’t even thought about what I might “get” for Mother’s Day. I’d rather have the girls do it as something they choose to do, and if they forget or they can’t afford a gift, that’s completely fine. Making it an “obligation” makes it kinda meaningless. It was very, very sweet when they chose to honor me in such a way–but I know they love me, apart from the holiday; and if I didn’t know that, their choice to do something for the holiday wouldn’t change that.

    It would probably “mean more” if we never had such a holiday, but kids periodically would buy flowers or something else thoughtful, or drop by with a card. Ask Mom out to dinner because she’s your mom and you want to spend time with her, not because there’s some cultural expectation that you will.

    It also ends up distracting from the Lord’s day. People can’t visit with church family since they have to leave and run to see biological family. On that point alone, if it were up to me I wouldn’t opt to have a dinner on that day.

    Liked by 1 person

  58. Roscuro (6:34), I often have tears and laughter during church 🙂 Today, the tears came with the hymn “What Wondrous Love is This”:

    Liked by 2 people

  59. I don’t take more than three in a row, so someone else needs to take one if I’m going to have a chance at 100!

    But this should make it obvious I could have taken it if I were without scruples.


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