FRIDAY FARE

Posted January 27, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Current Events, Friday

Tags: , , , ,

(A ‘private’  post just for the Spruce Tunnel   records – I want to remember this week.)

Finally.  Friday.  This week is over.    In the recurring rhythm of our weeks, this is the day we  remember and give extra consideration to the crucifixion of Jesus — so — so — so maybe I didn’t have it so bad.    Put all things in perspective —  but it took all my effort to regain some psychological health.

Alternating food with the week’s events, starting with Comfort Food:

codfish in milk

Codfish in milk.  Poached codfish.

Delicious and comforting and healthful, I hope, after a slight health scare — taken in stride, all will be well, I suppose  . . . .

A  couple boiling potatoes;    forbidden starch, but soothing:

Fri potatoes

Son was AWAY this week.   He is a good man.  He has good friends.  He was having good fun this week.    I’m a mother.     He was out of state.  That did NOT feel so good.

Friday’s fare came together for a most satisfying, comforting dish:

Fri fare

It’s astonishing how good this simple meal is.   All soft and creamy.

This is the second week into a new jigsaw puzzle.   (Thank you, my friend — I think.)   I’m at the stage where I’m quite sure they didn’t give me all the right pieces.

Puzzle 300

Stubborn as I am,  I spent fruitless hours on this puzzle –  but even worse, I had Internet news on in the background and I followed all the controversies of this past week.   Now I’m sorry I’m up to date on what the entertainment-news media has been talking about.  It’s been quite dismaying.

Shameful government shutdown stunt;  false assertions about immigration on one side, attempted clarifications from the other side;   dire predictions of  President Trump ruining world trade at Davos,  pride in our country and our president as the other side shows his enthusiastic reception;   endless controversies attempted  from one side, repeated attempts to put things in honest perspective from the other side  —

Sick straberry

Back and forth it went all week.  It’s enough to make a person believe that there’s really  Fake News out there.    It’s like that “fake” strawberry in my photo.

I bought several pints and quarts of berries to make juice this week.  I freeze the juice in little containers.  Part of my “medicine.”   (Hippocrates:  “Let  food be thy medicine.”)

Sick 2

But I’m not sure these strawberries qualify.   I’ve never seen pale cream-colored craters in strawberries before.     Really freaky.  Freak strawberries.  Fake strawberries.  Perhaps I will have to grow my own this summer.

This week was the first week of new classes for the year.   I had prepared pretty well,  but there’s always that uncertainty:   How will the classes go?  How will I do?  Will anyone come?    Can I meet expectations?     Couldn’t see what lies ahead  . . . .

Fog ahead

Fittingly,  my first day of class had me heading out into fog –  couldn’t see what lies ahead on the way in.

I kept a promise to myself, though.     Remember I said I’d wear the little tiny Precious Feet in honor of all our lost little ones in this country?

PIN Bab y feet

I wore them on my first day back to class,  little tiny golden feet, the size of a baby at ten weeks old, after conception.

But somehow it made me feel very sad.    True, the annual Right to Life march has not reversed Roe v Wade,  but it has  served to call attention  to and educate many  people on the value of human life at all ages.     And in many states, including my own,   abortion “clinics” have been shut down because of the coordinated efforts of such people.     In my own little city there are no  more surgical abortion clinics left.

But you can still get your baby killed by medicine.

So, again,  wearing the little pin made me feel very sad.

Temporary, I’m sure.  I’m not the kind of person to be affected by weeks like this – forever.

Psychological health.

 

 

 

 

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“THAT’S WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT”

Posted January 20, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Uncategorized

Tags: ,

(I’m admittedly a Luddite,  but not a Dodo.)

Okay, to prove I’m up-to-date  with  current American idiomatic phrases,  the following short post on numbers is, well – “That’s what I’m talking about…”   at least, that’s what I was talking about in the last post:

It was not thousands;    latest current tally is that 400,000  people marched in the Right to Life March yesterday, in Washington DC.         Quite a crowd! *

400,000  marchers –  to bring attention to the up to 59,000,000  who have been put to death in our country alone since 1973.

400,000 : 59,000,000   

Lots of people, but not a very good ratio,  don’t you think?

 

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.*     Quite a crowd – quite a bit more than the obscene “march for leftist women”  going on there today.   (“Obscene” —  merely a description of the words in their shouts and posters.    Many words have to be bleeped out when the entertainment-news media gives them attention.)

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baptism

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IF A TREE FALLS IN THE FOREST . . .

Posted January 20, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Apocalypse, Christian Analysis, Christian Love

Tags: , ,

 

So the saying goes:  “If a tree falls in the forest and no one is there to see it,  does it make a sound?”

If the Right to Life March happened in 2018 and there was no one from the entertainment-news media (CBSABCNBCFOXCNNMSNBC,etc.etc)  to cover it,  did it really happen?  

A march for women’s rights:

Many hundreds of thousands (which was translated to the word “thousands”)  marched for women’s rights:

right to be born

Do we not have at least the right to be born?

I’m probably not the best one to ask how much coverage the Right to Life March got yesterday;  I simply won’t get my news information from television.  Nevertheless,  I do watch and read  quite a bit of current events, from this country and from others.  Every other year past I have easily found information about the annual Right to Life marches; but not this year.

Brief mention of “antiabortionists,” maybe.     And dishonestly stating “thousands.”

According to our history books,  a couple thousand years ago, when a women gave birth, within a day or so the infant was taken to the husband, laid at his feet,  and he decides, then, whether to keep that baby in his household or to reject the infant, which would then be discarded.  They say the dumps at the edges of Roman cities were filled with the carcasses of little babies, rejected by their fathers.

(Early on,  Christians got in trouble for roaming these dumps, rescuing any infants who were still alive.   Christians were know to have a different morality, one that placed value on all humans, no matter their condition.)

I’ve been an adult for “many decades” now;  there have been adults in my classes for many, many years.    Never, until the last twenty years,  have I seen so many good men and women who have never been married.

As this one man has noted:

one third missing

Can’t find a good date?  Can’t find someone you’d  trust with  the rest of your life?    Chances are fairly good that your Soul Mate was killed in the womb.

All the little babies — more than Stalin killed in his massacre of  millions; all the little girls and boys;  all the young men and women . . .  gone.

I think I will start a one-man campaign for coverage for those who went to Washington DC and protested their disappearance and the ongoing “disappearances” of so many new little babies.     As many others do,  I will wear outside on my clothes little baby feet:

baby feet

Well, not real baby feet . . . that’s for their mommy and daddy to love.

These:

Precious feet

Little gold-colored feet of an unborn baby, so young that sometimes the mother isn’t really sure she’s pregnant!    But she is!    And the little baby exists!

You can find  these little feet by using a Search engine and typing in Precious Feet.

That will  my  news coverage.

 

Bar Cross in middle

 

For those of you who know God exists,  you can pray for the Right to Life marchers and workers;  those who stand and pray outside of those places that do away with little babies;   you can pray for the little babies;  you can pray for the babies who exist today but are as yet unborn;  you can pray for the physically damaged women who have had abortions;  you can pray for the psychological damage and horrors that go on in the minds of the men and women who would have been mothers and fathers.

And you can pray  God has mercy on our nation when He ultimately, inevitably rains down His justice on us.

HE CAN’T HELP IT . . .

Posted January 17, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christian Love, Family, Love, Uncategorized

Tags:

(America,  between two weekends)

 

He can’t help it that he’s so small. 

 

Cuddle Up, Baby Boy

We should be cuddling him by now.

When I was in college,  I worked in a pediatrics ward in a nearby hospital.    Occasionally we received a premature baby, and although we didn’t have “modern” technology, we  did everything we could, including holding and cuddling and encouraging the little thing to breathe and drink.

One day they brought to me a baby who weighed one pound, eight ounces.  I held  him in my hands —  my one hand, really.   His little head fit in the palm of my hand.     The doctors said he wouldn’t live,  but I gently touched him, stroked him,  cuddled him with my fingers, massaged his cheek so he would suck on the specially-made baby bottle nipple.    Well, he did live and he was transferred out in a month or so.

I more than fell in love with him –  I fell in love with life;  with  the tenacity of a living child holding on to life;  I fell in love with the fragility of life.     He had been in the womb for less than six months – and he made it.

The baby in the photo above didn’t make it.  Didn’t even make it out of the womb.

We can’t help it that we start out so small.

cant help it that hes small

It’s the way Nature works.    It’s the way God works through what we call “nature.”    It is His providence that we start so small and protected.

Protected in our mothers’ wombs.

We are between two weekends that are very significant to American citizens.   Yes,  I know all about the “dark side” of “Dr.”  Martin Luther King –  those facts have been around long enough — but you know what?   His message has been around a long time too.  His message has endured, and I’m kind of an MLK kind of girl:   You look at the character of a man,  not at the color of his skin.

It’s just part of our country now,  unless you listen to the desperate fiction that comes out of the drama-dependent  entertainment-news media.   American everyday life isn’t like the furiously angry people you see on television.    And it doesn’t have to be that way in small pockets of inner urban areas.

Martin Luther King was a minister of a protestant church,  and most of his family still believe as he did and still try to get out his main message.     It’s okay to celebrate his life and his message,  as we did last weekend.

Now there’s another weekend coming up:

mlk babies in the womb

Alveda King bridges the time between these two weekends,  one honoring King and one honoring and advocating the safety of our unborn American citizens.

Is that being broadcast on the entertainment-news media televisions stations?

Because the March For Life people have a message too.

life love

 

Holding that tiny little baby boy confirmed my Love for Life.   I still get tears in my eyes just thinking about him – and all his tiny fellow-citizens waiting to be born.

God bless these people:

life3 poster

 

I WISH I BELIEVED

Posted January 17, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Nature, Nature Speaks

Tags:

I don’t “wish upon a star”  anymore, but I did as a kid and thought it was fun.      And I no longer make a wish on  “Star Light, Star Bright,   very  first  star  I  see  tonight … ”

And I don’t see omens, good ones or bad ones, when I see a meteor flash across the sky,  but I try to look for them during every known meteor shower.

 But –  when it’s in my backyard  —

Meteor in back yard

That white line is just about what I saw in my backyard trees last night,  shortly after 8:00 p.m.     (For my friends who have looked out my back windows.)

I was talking, leisurely , on the phone, sitting in a chair, looking out the window into the dark snowy night.    While my friend was talking, I saw this flash,  a narrow bright rectangle of light that lasted about a second and left a”spot” in my eye, as though a flashbulb had gone off.

I didn’t interrupt my friend,  (maybe it was just a big chunk of snow falling from the tall trees?)    but shortly after   ( a minute or so?),  I did interrupt her and said,  Oh, my goodness, something just fell onto my deck!    She said,  Go and look!    I got up right away  to look for what had thumped, but told my friend I see no disturbance on the snow on the deck.   It all looked clean and, well, undisturbed.    We decided just that the “house must have shifted” — you know, it’s been pretty freezy cold around here.

Later that evening I found out that that bright short-lived streak was a meteor – big enough to be called a bolide,  and that thump I heard was a 2.0  earthquake, probably caused by the crashing of that meteor onto the earth, more than a hundred miles away.

It had a pathway from western Wisconsin to Pittsburgh, PA.

Ahhh,  when it happens in my own backyard,  then I feel lucky!!    Lucky to have seen it!

Spaceweather . com  has some more photos and a promise to follow up when more information becomes available.

Here’s a photo from our local news:

Fireball text

The “fireball” looks like a ball.

 

 

A YEATS KIND OF WEEKEND

Posted January 15, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Citizen of this world, Current Events, Philosophy for Today, Poetry

Tags: ,

I’m not too fond of “modern poetry” – not at all.  But once in a while it says what needs to be  known.   Let me show you how to read Yeats.

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So much happened this weekend  “out there,”   that I got tongue-tied.   Finger-Tied?  Keyboard-tied? 

All in all,  it created a Yeats kind of mentality.  William Butler Yeats.   A man whose heavy poetry seems to penetrate the human condition in the Twentieth Century   (which mentality we still labor under.)

So consider  (illustrations follow) :

THE VALLEY OF THE BLACK PIG

The dews drop slowly and dreams gather:  unknown spears

Suddenly hurtle before my dream-awakened eyes

And then the clash of fallen horsemen and the cries

Of unknown perishing armies beat about my ears.

 

We who still labor by the cromlech on the shore

The grey cairn on the hill when day sinks drowned in dew

Being weary of the world’s empires, bow down to You,

Master of the still stars and of the flaming door.

 

Unknown spears:

“the clash of unknown spears suddenly hurtle”

(savage and primitive instruments of war)

Spears in war

And do we not use spears of all kinds to hurtle against our enemies?

Horses used in warfare –    “the clash of fallen horses”  —    fallen horses as the effort is lost    —

horses

—   and yes, we use horses in warfare in these “modern” days.   ( See the 2018 movie  “12 Strong.“)

This is a cromlech, standing stones with a capstone laid across:

Cromlech

These have been built by humans since the days of the Ice Age, for whatever reason,  for whatever failing hope, all humans, all continents.

“Who still labor by the cromlech on the shore”:

crommlech by the sea

If we “still labor,”  we haven’t yet learned what we must.

Here is a cairn –     “The grey cairn on the hill when  day sinks”

Cairn on a hill

The building of a cairn must be an  ingrained behavior set into us humans from ancient times.  I say this because much to my astonishment,  when Daughter was engaged to be married  (to a “foreigner” — i.e., a brilliant young man from California!),  we took her young man for a trip way up to the Far Far North to show him the land of her grandparents.   In the winter!   Far away from his sunny California shores.

We went to a presque-type island jutting into Lake Superior,  where there were billion year old rock outcroppings that are fun to walk on.  Problem was, it was an extremely bitterly cold windy day.     The young man and I think Son and I (was Hubbie there?)     jumped out of the car (parked car)  and went to the shore.    The guys gathered rocks from here and there – and built a cairn!

 

cairn by the sea

What “instinct”  inspired the building of a cairn on an inhumanly cold day?   What meaning is there in marking your spot with a cairn?      What urge?

Is it a marker?       “Kilroy was here.”

“the grey cairn on a hill when the day sinks in dew being weary of the world’s empires . . .”

We construct  a cairn on  the world’s “hills” because it might last, longer, far longer, than the world’s empires.

And what is the American “Empire” accomplishing?    What is the Deep State that is seeking to overthrow the “Empire” accomplishing, in the long run?   How long will the results of our striving and ‘clashing”  exist?

And more and more clashing and striving as long as history lasts . . .

Yeats had it right:   the cairn (and the cromlech)   are a feeble human thrust into the universe, into eternity,  a paltry claim to be part of it all.    But when “the day sinks,” the day,  our day,  will inevitably “bow down” to the Creator of it all –  unknown Master as He may be to modern man.

It is only the Creator who is “the master of the still stars”

stars

 

And we’d all better know what that “flaming door” is and why it’s there.

 

______________________________

 

Read the poem again.

Yeats poetry is meant to be read out loud,   several times over;  you just won’t get “enough”  if you read it only once.

 

I think my fingers are freed now.  I can write some posts about what I was observing,  but it all seems so feeble, now,  like the building of a cairn on a hill,   the construction of a cromlech which will eventually collapse;  I would try not to  write only  about war horses, screaming as they fall,  and the weariness of it all.   There is meaning to be found  (I am not Yeats),  and there is an End to history.  

TWO ANTI’s TO AN ANTI TO ALL ANTIs

Posted January 12, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: A Nation of LEGAL Immigrants, Culture, Current Events, Mass Migration, Modern Issues, News Media, Social Engineering, Truth, War Against America

Tags: , ,

 

A rant, on my part:

(That’s a chicken in his hands.)    (New York City?) *

viagra

About that meeting yesterday in which President Trump was presented with an immigration proposal that everyone knew was the exact  opposite of what he wanted, no compromise on their part.    President Trump was impatient and angry at this obvious slap in the face.   Their  grandstanding.   Delay tactic.    Attempted attrition.

 

Then two anti-Trump people, who were not present at the meeting to hear anything, have reported to two anti-Trump “news” reporters who work for an anti-Trump newspaper their impression of what President Trump said.

 

som 3

Is that third degree hearsay?

Do you remember when the European report came out that the average, general IQ of people living in Somalia is 60?

Som 1

Somalia does not have a tradition of governing by a system of laws.  The only thing that is known in that country is rule by various Warlords.    It’s who you know and how well you can fight and dominate those who are not like you.

Plainly and fairly the President was questioning why a county must accept immigrants from countries that are so far away from Western European and American culture.

som 2

Because some countries are a real mess.    I would not use the words that came out of the mouths of those  anti-Trump people, but  truth is truth about Third World  countries where most of the people are victims.    Reality is reality.

Americans are not racist-  remember when we gave over a billion dollars to the victims of the earthquake in Haiti?   A Billion dollars.      A Billion  dollars to (mostly) Black people.

Oh, it didn’t get to the Haitian people –  nearly all of that money went to Mrs. Bill Clinton and her Clinton Foundation –  where it stayed.   The Haitian president is spitting mad whenever he hears her name.   I’m sure the Haitian people are wondering where their aid is too.

hai 4

Mrs. Bill Clinton has been heard using the “F” bomb frequently in her speaking. Derogatory, demeaning statements about people.    And all kinds of vile language when questioned about her actions,  like where the money for the Black people of Haiti went.

hai 3

Politics of Personal Destruction.    It’s not just a catchy phrase — it’s a policy of demeaning, dominating,  and destroying your political enemies.      Like the Warlords of Somalia.    The media is very helpful.     95% are rabidly anti-Trump.

 

It’s possible that the anti-Trump Sen. Durban  is too young to remember the language used by previous presidents (and certain first ladies).    But it is easy to find such vulgar language in many biographies of these former presidents (such as Kennedy,  Johnson,  Nixon, Clinton, and we  know about the  Barack-Hussein person even without a biography).

 

This woman needs help:

hai 1

She needs economic aid for her country.    Ask:  what is the purpose of a nation’s immigration policy?     Is there a nation?    Does a nation have a right to decide its own fate?  Its own characteristics?    Is this woman ready to add to the health of another nation?

The systems and cultures of some countries are not helpful to Western nations.   It has nothing to do with the color of the skin who live in those  cultures. — and most anti-Trumpers know that.

But they’re on a roll.  The anti-Trump media will repeat their story over and over and over again . . .  until something else distracts them.

If you smear the president with charges of racism,  maybe you can weaken his position so much that he’ll back down and do what you want him to do about immigration.

Maybe some of those anti-Trumpers should visit some  New York City areas:

nwe york city apts

. *   Here’s an open market in an immigrant section of NYC.   I’m sure you know what those goats are going to be used for.

I remember hearing a few years ago a New York City policeman talking – a couple of them in that interview, actually.    They said there are apartment buildings they don’t like to go into because they can hear the bleating of goats and the chickens inside those apartments,  ready for sacrifice,  the smell of blood . . .   and there was nothing they could lawfully do about it.     Voodoo.  Santeria.

Not your average cheerful Methodist social justice warriors in those apartments.

Chain migration.    Whole families and extended families allowed to . . .  invade.

 

(And why does the United Nations think it can mandate that every Western nation must accept large numbers of people from anywhere?   What is their motive?   What does the United Nations have against European and American  nations? )  

 

We’re not talking about Legal Migration,  are we?      The anti-Trumpers seem to be confused on that part.    They’ll switch back and forth as they argue. Makes compromise on their part nearly impossible.

So the entertainment-news media has created some ammunition today.

And I’m ranting back at them.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

WHAT? SWEDEN?

Posted January 10, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Lessons from History, Modern Issues, Socialism

Tags:

Maybe this comes under the category of Think and Do that I’ve been writing about lately — analyze the situation truthfully, and then do something –  change things for the better, as you can,  in your own little sphere.

But first –  protect yourself?

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As a Scandinavian I keep  watch on news coming out of Sweden  and  Finland  (not linguistically Scandinavian, I know.)

map sc

Right up north at the top where the yellow, orange, and purple lands meet  is where my ancestors came from,  both sides of my family.      One of my favorite commenters is a young man named PeterSweden . . .  that’s his YouTube name;  he’s easy to find.

peter sweden

He speaks English with the accent that  my grandparents had.     Kind of nice.   Check out his gondola ride up a Norwegian mountain – breathtaking!

He comments on the current events in Sweden, as he watches his poor country self-destruct as they are overwhelmed with m o s l e m  people largely from Africa, according to the Global-socialist directives.   The   “migrant-invaders”  have taken over large portions of Swedish towns now.     There are murders,  explosions,  brutal rapes happening all over in this formerly peaceful and safe country.  The police and firemen are outnumbered, threatened, and physically harmed.

Swedish women are told to not go out at night . . . .   In the interest of good taste I won’t even repeat some of the stories.

A few Swedes are asking where their “Viking” spirit is.     Where are the Viking men to protect their daughters and sisters and mothers and wives?

But today I’m reading something very odd.  Here are the headlines:

THE SWEDISH GOVERNMENT IS WARNING CITIZENS TO BE PREPARED FOR AT LEAST A WEEK WITHOUT HELP

Why?  What’s coming?   And then follows an official statement:

“Because we have the security policy situation we have today, we say that we will make our planning at government level to face a security crisis for three months,” says Eva-Lena Fjällström, Deputy Director of the County Administrative Board in Västerbotten.

– Eftersom vi har det säkerhetspolitiska läge vi har idag så säger man att vi ska göra vår planering på myndighetsnivå för att klara en säkerhetspolitisk kris i tre månader, säger Eva-Lena Fjällström beredskapsdirektör på länsstyrelsen i Västerbotten.

“I think it’s important that you can manage yourself. Society has changed and is vulnerable and complex with many dependencies. It can easily be a disturbance so we have to manage ourselves, “says Eva-Lena Fjällström.

– Jag tycker att det är viktigt att man kan klara sig själv. Samhället har förändrats och är sårbart och komplext med många beroenden. Det kan lätt bli en störning så att vi tvingas klara oss själva, säger säger Eva-Lena Fjällström.

(From:  www . sv t. se/  etc  etc   etc)

“Three months” of disturbances?     “War,”  “crisis,”  and “civil unrest”  were mentioned.

Okay –  so, a little later in the bulletin,  it says that young people must face a changing world and they must learn how to take care of themselves without government help.  They must learn techniques for  personal survival.

They also explain that the “changing world”  has become divided sharply into left and right,  with dangerous consequences for the nation.

Yes, well –  this admonition  (warning?) is coming from a government which fosters cradle-to-grave dependencies;  that is,  Sweden is a radically socialist state which takes great amounts of taxes from the working people and distributes it around, including to foreigners who have settled there and contribute nothing to their care and upkeep, cradle-to-grave.

As Bernie Sanders would say:  “Free education for all!”

Secondly,   it is these revolutionaries/progressives/socialists  who have divided the world into “left” and “right”   which was appropriate, I guess, for the French Revolution,  but we are so used to hearing it that we don’t question anymore how severely those descriptions actually do divide a society  – irreversibly and eventually dangerously.

Now the Swedish government warns of the consequences of their own policies.   You can no longer depend  upon us . . .  and our Left-Right paradigm has produced a dangerous, sharply divided society.

From observation, from history,   Socialism always reaches its end.  Painfully.

Something big has changed in Sweden.

canary

Is Sweden our Canary in the   Mine Shaft  Snowstorm?

 

Perhaps we have a little more time to observe what is happening there,  analyze what is happening in our country . . .  maybe  do something about it,  like put the brakes on government dependency,  of dividing  our friends into Left or Right politics,  and maybe demanding that people who cross our borders obey our laws.

 

 

 

 

GREATEST MOVIE!

Posted January 9, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Humor, Lessons from History, Moral Behavior, WWII

Tags: , , , , ,

Just want to alert you all to a really great movie that I saw today.  I don’t see many,  but I sure am glad I saw this one.

wc

It is Darkest Hour,  a study of Winston Churchill in 1940 as he and the British government (and people)  came to terms with the very real threat presented by Hitler – who up to that time was seen by intellectuals  as an aid against Bolshevism.  At times it seemed that Winston Churchill was the only one who saw the threat clearly and knew that Britain had to fight – and was the last nation standing against Hitler which could do so.

But how to convince others of that?

Churchill himself had a long and not entirely successful public career.    He was known for his big failures and bad judgment.   On the other hand,  he showed exceptional courage and determination in many circumstances.   His speaking manner was brash, blunt, to the point,  painfully honest and uncompromising.   But he was right about Hitler and his qualities were very much needed at the time.

He also had a sense of humor,  the kind that takes you unawares and will knock the legs out from under you, metaphorically speaking.   I found that I agreed with his take on many things and his humorous, hyperbolic way of saying it.

wc apple

I agree,   for instance,  wholeheartedly with this statement of his.

I don’t know if your parents or grandparents or great-grandparents lived during these times and participated in  WWII and passed on any knowledge to you,    but I do know that we need to know about that generation and how they obtained the moral fortitude to recognize and defeat the enemy.

We, alive today,  need to know them and understand them!    This movie can contribute greatly to our knowledge of what it takes to live in this world.    We may need to have this knowledge to use as our guide and our model  when our times become undeniably dangerous.

bombs

God grant we never have to face such a serious threat –  but then again God doesn’t help a a nation that has deliberately turned away from Him.      A society made of a few good souls and a lot of bad souls will lose in the end,  but maybe a movie like this can teach us a thing or two — because the bombs fall on the good and bad alike.

On the way home from the movie I stopped by my little library and found this book:

wc book

 

It’s turning out to be a very good one, a very valuable one.   Yes, the character and personality and persistence of Winston Churchill really was a deciding factor leading his nation into the painful and costly pathway to victory.

The book itself explains the situation in more depth and fills out the characters that were seen in the movie.   Very satisfying to know these times more deeply.

So,  highly recommended:  Darkest Hour

Highly recommended;   The Churchill Factor

Highly recommended:    To look at reality,  to learn the truth,  to act according to the Truth.

Anything less is a Neville Chamberlain type of postponement of  inevitable disaster.   The world doesn’t fix itself by compromising .

GREATEST GAME

Posted January 9, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Football

Tags: ,

Well, one of the greatest anyway.

trophy

I’ve seen very few football games this year, and I didn’t exactly “see”  the college football playoffs either —  but I did listen to it on the radio, and I’ll have to say that was one of the most exciting purely football-football games I’ve ever, uh, heard!

Add with a slightly frustrated wish to see Alabama win,  I almost relaxed and thought the game was over when they didn’t even score for the first half.   And then they caught up, it was tied —  and then!    A missed field goal at the end of the game from a kicker who isn’t expected to miss.   No win there.

So entering overtime,    Georgia quickly makes a field goal.   Game over?

Alabama has one more chance.   One more possession.   Do something, as I’ve been writing about all week.    Know the situation and do what needs to be done!

And . . .   no!     First Down and ten yards . . .   then something really, really bad happened, and it was Second Down and  26 to go.      26yards!

And a true-freshman quarterback,  substituted in during this game,  made a pass under pressure.

41 yards that ball sailed through the air!!!    Like a bullet,  into the hands of a true freshman receiver –  TOUCHDOWN ALABAMA —  CHAMPIONSHIP WIN ALABAMA!

Whew!

I enjoyed that.

Enjoyed the coach’s comment too after the game:   Nick Saban said about his inexperienced,  unproven freshman quarterback, who just last year was sitting in his  high school classrooms —  ” If I knew he was going to try to throw a pass,  I would have stopped him,  but I couldn’t get out there in time!”

Bar Cross in middle

 

st francis  Dear St Francis de Borgia,

I haven’t stopped my learning —

You are still my model  . . .  but you  loved rough and tumble (foot)ball games too, once,  long ago,  far away in Spain,  for a while during your life. . . .

I’ve watched only 25% of football this year, compared to other years.

 

 

 

 

 

“DOING” SOMETHING – LIKE THIS

Posted January 7, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christendom, Cooper, Family, Holy Days

Tags: ,

 

Well, yesterday’s post was a little complex – and serious.    I still mean every word – even all the words I didn’t write  so it wouldn’t become extraordinarily long.

holy family the

Feast of the Holy Family

I meant just to say,  “Look around you, look at the world around you – and although there is much to learn and study and analyze,  yet still in a small way,  each of us is called  to actually act upon what we know.

Today’s remembrance within  Christendom centers on the Holy Family of Jesus, Mary, and Joseph, put before us as our model of family life.   Our sermon was about what makes up a family in general;  I would have wished to hear more about the qualities of the Holy Family, but that’s okay,  that was his choice,  and nothing stops me from finding out more writings about these qualities on my own.

 

st theres familyThe family of St. Therese of Lesieux –

 

But that’s my point from yesterday, I guess.   Find out something in society that is good, that makes life strong and stable, and since we can all acknowledge that we don’t have that commonly anymore,  find out what went wrong, and what  can be done about it.  That’s a doable task for each individual person.

Take “family,”  for instance,  the theme for this day.

 

her whole family

The entire family of St. Therese, mother on left, father on right.

 

I’ve had lots of decades of TV viewing under my belt.   (Lots!)    I can truly say with sorrow that I’ve witnessed the disintegration and degradation of TV families,  so until now we hardly know — or rather we hardly dare define what a family really is.  We must be “politically correct” and “inclusive”  — so “they” tell us.   *

But “they” are wrong.   I’ve witnessed the sorrow and regretful longing implicit in so many movies and television series of the past two decades . . .  almost as though the writers know they are missing something precious, and this society can never have it  back.

HOLY FAMILY and st therese

(I have this painting at home,  but this photo  is apparently from “Restored Tradition.”   It shows St. Therese visiting the Holy Family – to learn as well as to pay homage.   Of course, she is separated by many centuries from the Holy Family,  but there is truth here:  we can all “visit”  this model of family love,  and also learn.  But as she,  the visit must be on bended knee.)

It’s not just sadness among  young adults because their family was messed up.      There are serious and dangerous society implications too,  all reflected in our entertainment that seems rudderless, pointless,  and rather despairing.

How do we turn around the loss of Family?    Can we repair this mess we’ve made of family life?       We need a model.    What is the “real dollar bill”  and what is the counterfeit?   We need to know the difference, and we need to know what difference it makes.

Then in our small way, one person at a time,  make our family a good one, perhaps modeled after the Holy Family.

 

_______________________________

.*   This presentation of devolving family life is also seen in children’s books, especially their school “readers.”      My Grandson Cooper loves reading the Dick and Jane books of the 1950’s;  he finds them interesting and logical,  fun and safe.     By the time I was teaching school, “they” had taken away wholesome family life and substituted all the politically correct wrong ideas about what the word family could mean.

That generation of children grew up imitating the broken families that they had read about their schoolbooks.

Their children know “something” is wrong with the way their parents lived, lived apart,  broke up their families,  blended new groups together . . .

And their children’s children wish to do something about it.

EPIPHANY: DO SOMETHING!

Posted January 6, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christian Analysis, Civilzation, French Revolution, Lessons from History, Liturgical Year

Tags: ,

“Or else then it will be too LATE!”     I’m not sure how helpful a memory generated by fear can be,  but those are the words that my father often spoke to me.    “Look at the situation; and act;  do your duty while you can or else  then it will be too late!

Yeah ,  little girl being taught (and taught well) by her big giant Marine Corps daddy with Viking fury blazing out of his deep blue eyes.

Sounds too tough?   Well, I got through my father’s parenting, and the older I got the more I was really, really glad I learned  some of   his lessons.     Every word was spoken out of love.

Do something about it!” 

“While you still can.”

gulag campfire

I am reminded of  Solzhenitsyn of the newly formed Soviet Union and his two friends crouching around a small fire in the freezing cold of a Siberian gulag,  discussing with regret that they should have seen this coming.  But they had done nothing but speak and write and discuss  political hypotheses,  as though the danger were not  real.

So what do all these dire  thoughts have to do with Epiphany today?

WISE MEN Invis Blue 280

There are wonderful, important, life-and-death,  eternal lessons to learn from the actions of the “three” Wise Men from Persia: seeing a star,  knowing its meaning,  and traveling towards it.    The Spruce Tunnel has written about the religious significance on other Epiphanies.

This year there seems to be some urgency.

The Star heralded the birth of the Anointed One from God-Most-High  come to earth to save the people from their sin;     to bring blessing and aid to the humans who are so divinely loved.     For 2,500 years,  more or less,  scholars had been reading of this  promised  Christ — they didn’t know when,  but there would be signs that indicated His coming.   These Magi from Persia saw the Star –

–    and they  did something.

They studied their own times,   they studied the wisdom of the past,  they saw something new in the sky;  and they concluded that now was the time to act – to actually act, not to study it more,  to think about it more,  to be “happy” about it — but to act.    In so doing,  the eyes of these non-Jewish Magi beheld and accepted the Messiah that had come for Jews and Gentiles alike.

The Door has now opened to the whole world.

Wise men afar

Epiphany presents the Actions of God for us;   the actions of faith from us;   and a request for an act of commitment to the Christ-Child,  forever rejoicing in the Light of Life.

Has there ever been any century when the Forces of Darkness did not work through the hearts of men?    Our times, maybe?       Have we shown that we can save ourselves?  make the world a better place?   on our own, without the need for God in our everyday lives?

Of course there’s  a “fun ” side to Epiphany.  Wise Men with  gifts and “We Three Kings of Orient Are…”;   and it’s the Twelfth Day of Christmas;  and we get to put our Christmas decorations away . . . .   but let me show you what I just read today:

The Marquis de la Force in France,  late 18th century,   was a modern and successful man,  up-to-date with the latest in liberal thinking.  All the liberal philosophies that were forming made sense to him and to his society which was in the process of throwing off the old ways, and especially that superstitious enemy of the modern world, the Catholic Church.

And his lovely young daughter entered a Carmelite convent.

And his countrymen began a revolution that ended in regicide and the bloody overturning of his own society.

rev terror

The  philosophical wanderings and  political dallyings of de la Force and his trendy friends had led to bloodshed and chaos and changing alliances, so that soon no one was safe.

rev guill

This political party,  that political party,  in and out of favor,  no compass, no guide,  no restraint —  just “the politics of personal destruction  and rule by public opinion — and lives destroyed on the guillotine.

Including his own lovely young daughter,  who was one of the Carmelite nuns of Compeigne,  led one by one up the stairs to the block, under the blade.

com 2

The nuns sang sweetly as they waited,  the Veni Sancte Creator, I think,  and as it happened,   little Blanche de la Force’s voice was  the last one left singing before she was executed.

We know this from history:    the French blithely tossed away  the Catholic Church and  then lost their foundation of moral law and truth and justice.    What takes the place of the Church are the Forces of Darkness, ready to rip through the hearts of men.

Her father spoke these words:

“This outrage is intolerable!   Something ought to be done about it!   Religious people should see to  it.  I’m told that they still exist in sufficient numbers.   I hope they will increase.   These circles are indispensable for law and order.   Why don’t they do something!”   *

We don’t know much about what happened to the Marquis,  but, as the author of this little book says:  “Life took the initiative . . .  and as far as I can see,  the actual events were the logical consequences of his (political)  beliefs.”

So here at Epiphany  with the Wise Men,  and now,  and  there at the French Revolution with all its faith in a society without the Church,  and later at the Soviet Revolution,  with its determination to create a perfect society without God,   we can witness great ideas that influence mankind,  wise men who put the good ideas into action,  and others who just let the Forces of Darkness steer the events of this world.

There is a present meaning for us  in Epiphany.    With the Light it brings,   with the epiphany it creates in our minds,   I hope we can do something to head off the Darkness that is coming  —  or then it will be too late.

 

(I feel  like a little girl again.)

“This outrage is intolerable!   Something ought to be done about it!   Religious people should see to  it.”

 

.*  The Song of the Scaffold,  by Gertrud von la Port

SOUNDS OF COLD

Posted January 5, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Humor, Wild Birds, Winter

Tags: , ,

Frosty windows today!

5 windows

I’ve  just emailed some of my Friday morning class,   reminding them we don’t have class today.    I ended by bidding them to enjoy the Cold Blast with cozy soft  clothes,  good books,   hot soups and tea and cocoa.

5 soup

But I noticed –  not only do these cups of hot liquids feel good to our hands,  but their sounds  are an anticipation of inner warmth — —   stirring the soup with a  hard metal spoon, scraping the bottom of the pan;

—  the light crinkle of paper surrounding the tea ,   5 tea bag 60

—  the opening of the  container of cocoa,  the swish and light clatter of a spoon around and around the cup   (I have a quiet house).

5 st cocoa str 50

Prolong those sounds and the enjoyment increases.

 

5 ha ha colors 70  Other sounds too:   All those expected,  overused words we use to express our astonishment that it could actually get this cold!   All those jokes:   “It’s so cold that . . . ”     Here’s a political joke:   “It’s so cold that Elizabeth Warren is now calling herself an Eskimo!”   

Okay,  maybe only 58% of our country would find that funny;  the other ‘half’  don’t seem to have a sense of humor about themselves.

5 birds

The peeps and chirps of the wild birds are sharper and shriller as they remind you to throw out more bird seed.

Then there’s the nail-popping sound when the air gets so cold that the roof contracts and pops those nails right out of the shingles.

5 nails 85

You’re laying there in bed all night hearing a Snap!   Pop!  and Roll!   as the nail is freed and rolls all the way down the roof.    Kind of fun.    (“It’s so cold that I’m losing the nails in my roof. ”  hmmmm)

And then there’s the sound we can all make, if we’re lucky enough to have snow:    You have to walk out to the mailbox and you’re all bundled up like in a cocoon and all you can hear is the Squeak!  Squeak!  Squeak!  of your boots making footprints in the super-frozen dry snow.

Tip:   For added fun,  take your walk to the mailbox when it’s dark.  Preferably by moonlight.

5 moonlight

(Just remember, you can’t breathe that super-cold air  into  your lungs or you’ll come up coughing and sputtering!)

 

5 cocoa 110 j

 

KEEP WARM!

 

 

CAN’T COMPLAIN

Posted January 5, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Winter

Tags: ,

     -4

That would be MINUS 4  right now,  predicted to go down a  few more degrees yet tonight.      -7, then.

icy

But I am absolutely not complaining after seeing ice water,  literally ice cold water carrying sheets of ice down Boston streets today.

I went out today, first time since New Year’s Eve now that I’m vertical again and on my feet.   It was cold and sunny,  but with a new fur-lined parka,  I didn’t even feel the cold when I went out for supplies.

Hurt to breathe in, though.   I forgot that that happens in below zero weather.

I understand most of America is sharing this same experience this week, each in our own way.   Hope your weather is interesting – but not too interesting.

2nd DAY – GONE!

Posted January 3, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: saint

Tags: , , ,

Notice all the dire predictions for 2018?

2018

“Each year will bring us changes and trials . . . .”

I expected to write yesterday,  “the 2nd day of January,”  but that day is gone!  Circumstances surprisingly changed and  ironically,  that was to be the theme of Jan. 2nd,  the saint for that day being a man who remained courageously faithful despite changing circumstances all his life.

St.  Fulgentius.  All the lessons I was going to bring out about his life came back like a boomerang onto me.  So maybe  I  better pay attention!

st f.jpg  Fulgentius’s first job as a young man was as a procurator,  in the days when the Roman emperors were still appointing procurators to do their minor administrative tasks.   It was like today’s equivalent to going to Washington DC to join the bureaucracy there.   Job security, if you don’t mind the tasks.  But a nice entry level job.   Who knows how high you can rise?

 

But Fulgentius was a good young man,  observant,  thoughtful, and of good character.  His main task was to collect taxes for his region –  but he began to hate the job.  The Empire was merciless and unforgiving about getting your taxes paid,  and the use to which those taxes were put   troubled the young man.

One day he heard a talk given by St. Austin,  a scholarly treatment of the Psalms.   Fulgentius immediately understood the truth of the words,   the historical plan of God for Jews and Gentiles alike, and above all,  the worthiness of this God to be worshiped and glorified and served, made clear in the Psalms.    Fulgentius became a Christian.

Now his service was to the Church, first, and not to the Empire, and he should have had a clear and easy pathway in his life,   but there were powerful enemies against the Christians,  the Arians who had their own idea of what Christians should believe in, and they had come to power.    At every turn, for many decades,  Fulgentius was blocked,  his plans thwarted and stopped,    made to move to another area,    falsely accused, and finally brutally punished, left bloody and bruised.

beatin g  Nearly half-dead,  the Arian leader of the area came to see him and offered to prosecute the man responsible for his nearly fatal beating.     Fulgentius would at least have his legal redress.

But by this time of his life, after all of life’s twists and turns, after all the negative challenges, Fulgentius had become a mature Christian,  holy, and Christ-like.  He replied that  “A Christian must not seek revenge in this world.   God knows how to right his servants’  wrongs.   If I should bring the punishment of man upon that priest,  I should lose my own reward with God.   And it would be a scandal to many little ones that a Catholic,  however unworthy he maybe,   should seek redress from an Arian.”

After this,  Fulgentius retired to a quiet island, and died shortly after.

The lesson of his life?   I quote Fr.  Alban Butler:      Each year may bring us fresh changes and trials;  let us learn from St. Fulgentius   to receive all that happens as from the hand of God,   and appointed for our salvation.

This year will bring may unexpected changes of circumstances. Even just paying attention to the news will be unsettling.     Our plans will not come to pass, our hopes and dreams will not come true,  and not all our work will  have rewards.   And other people will be the cause of it.

Anyway –  we work how we can,  when we can,  where we can —  the important things happen inside you, between you and God.

So what happened to my plans for an efficient new year, getting everything done just right?     Now that I am no longer in bed, doubled up with pain,  no more wobbly legs,  and able to eat a little,    I guess I just adjust to a couple lost days and accept:  I’m not really in charge of everything that comes to me.

It’s okay.  I’m still cheerful.

God is in me, and Him I serve.    No matter what happens to this planet.

2018 – FIRST DAY

Posted January 1, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christendom, Christian Analysis, Holy Days

Tags:

No one wants to put the first mistake onto a brand-new  sheet of blank paper.   No one wants to let the first drip of spaghetti fall onto a clean white shirt .    And no one wants to goof up the first day of a New Year.

But I did NOT want to get up this morning in the middle of a deep sleep,  super physically tired, feeling  like I might be coming down with something, and  feeling slightly depressed after saying good-bye to Cooper at the airport, and then facing a long drive to church in 3 degree morning temperatures    . . .

But I also didn’t want to  miss the first Mass of the year.

According to my last post:

New Year’s Resolution #3 is  foundationally related,  simply to put forth God,   God’s Christ, and God’s Church . . . . throughout this Liturgical year –  365 days, each with a reason  — 

So.    It’s January 1st.    Christendom unites in celebrating the Feast of the Circumcision,  which falls eight days after the birth of Jesus – of course.

circumcision

On its surface,  the rite of circumcision welcomes the child into the nation of Israel.   The child is an Israelite.  The child is a Jew.

A little deeper –  the separating away of  the flesh is an outward sign that  the child (the man)  is separated  away  from the world,  separated unto God.

A little deeper still,  circumcision on the eighth day is a physical symbol of the separation of a man’s heart from sin,   prefiguring  that complete cleansing from sin that will occur after his Resurrection, and thus circumcision is connected to our Judgment.

Circumcise yourselves to the Lord,      circumcise your hearts,
    you people of Judah and inhabitants of Jerusalem,
or my wrath will flare up and burn like fire     because of the evil you have done—
    burn with no one to quench it.     Jeremiah 4:4

The act of circumcision is used this way in both the New and the Old Testaments.

In the Church’s Feast of the Circumcision, we remember that Christ Himself was subjected to circumcision, not to separate himself from any  actual sin,  but to demonstrate that He has come to fulfill every part of the Law of Moses.

And furthermore, more deeply:    A small amount of blood is shed during a circumcision.     This is the first time Jesus, the Son of God, shed His blood – a foreshadowing of  pouring out His lifeblood on the Cross for all  human souls.   

One more thing happens at a Jewish circumcision:  you are given a name.

“Jesus.”    (The meaning is “Savior.)     Or:   J’shua   (  God saves.)

motherhood

Closely related to remembering the Circumcision on this day is remembering the Mother of the Child who was circumcised –   Mary,  the Mother of Jesus,  the Mother of the Son of God,  the Mother, therefore, of God.

Her   Yes   to God  (“Fiat mihi secundum verbum tuum.“);   her faith and love;  her role;  her total giving of herself;  her motherhood;  her universal motherhood, as her Son would have it from his Cross.

Yes, I’m glad I didn’t put the first stain on this bright and blank New Year.    I’m  glad – pretty joyful –  that I had gotten out of bed and driven through the deep freeze, and that I had united myself to all this in the Mass of this day.

In fact,  there’s a lot more here that can be contained in just one Mass.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

2018 = 1,440 X 365

Posted January 1, 2018 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christian Analysis, Citizen of this world, Civilzation, Liturgical Year

Tags: ,

Just thinking here.

I love “receiving” a whole new year.   Or at least receiving the possibility of a whole new year of life;  none of us can know that we will make it through the entire year.

Nevertheless,  each new year gives us the gift of 365 days divided into  1,440 segments.   That seems like a lot of opportunities.   So my New Year’s Resolutions – if I were to make any –  would be, first, to not waste any of those 1,440 “gifts,”  leaving them at the end of the day like so many unopened presents under an old Christmas tree.

The 1,440 gifts are tools to use in the furtherance of a purpose, the reason each of us were made.     The purpose may or may not be related to  the skills and talents and inclinations we have, but we do the best we can with what we seem to know.   1,440 minutes each new day, like 1,440 little tools – the time to do what we should.

So, for me,   New Year’s Resolution #2 has something to do with making the Counter-Revolution known – the rising up of people all over the world against their Revolutionary Rulers who themselves previously tore down Western Culture and trampled on our values – and then became the ruling Establishment,   silencing us with political correctness and rather oppressive laws.

(Do you have any idea how free people were back in the Middle Ages?  How much free time?  How much freedom from taxes?)

Just think “the old, aging Sixty-Eighters,”  who fought the Cultural Revolution, peaking in 1968, and then worming their way into every power structure in the Western world, and entrenching themselves into a new kind of self-perpetuating establishment.  It is those Revolutionaries we must Counter – or we all descend into some kind of  barbaric chaos where Might Makes Right  and we’re controlled by some contrived  consensus created by fictional opinion polls to keep us compliant.   We’ve got to fight back!

For what “purpose”?      To Restore Western Values —  the values that created a strong, stable, prosperous civilization which not only worked but was actually quite self-correcting.

“Politics determines how we’ll live in this world;  religion determines how we’ll live in the next.”    (Not a perfect motto,  but there is some truth to it.)

New Year’s Resolution #3 is  foundationally related,  simply to put forth God,   God’s Christ, and God’s Church . . . . throughout this Liturgical year –  365 days, each with a reason      . . .  1,440  minutes in each of those days,   each minute with a reason and a purpose.

_______________________________

 

Not to say that I’ll be blogging twice a day this year . . .  and probably not even once a day.

 

DAY OF DEPARTURE

Posted December 31, 2017 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Uncategorized

Can’t  . . .  uh  . . .   I’m supposed to write now —

________________________________________

 See this?   —

Cooper thru the gates 380

That’s Cooper through all the gates and things.    They got ‘im.

Cooper and I each had a little silent meltdown at the airport.    Such a  difficult day.    The TSA and Security agents noticed our . . .  difficulty –  and they showed me a way to stay as close to him as I could all along his check-out line.    Which only intensified the difficulty.

They said they noticed the little boy was “upset.”     Probably noticed me too.

So.

There.

We’re apart now.

____________________________________

 

“Difficulty”  remains intensified.    I feel like canceling everything this week.

 

 

 

SLED LEGS

Posted December 30, 2017 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Childhood, Cooper

Tags: , ,

We are having a non-stop busy week  – no time for the usual activities,  but I’ve stolen a few minutes to tell you about a great new “invention”  for snowy days!

Sled Legs 280

That’s my grandson Cooper going down our nearby sledding hill – on his new Sled Legs.

They’re a great idea!

sled legs on

You strap these things to your legs,  just above your knees and above your shoes, so you can still walk . . .

sled legs walking

. . .  because the idea is you walk up to the top of the hill and then fling yourself on your knees and slide down.

Cooper says you can steer, but the  adults with him say you can’t.

(I think you can believe a 7 year old who plays Scrabble like a pro, two days after he learned that the game exists.   He picked up the rules for Parcheesi in about ten seconds.  And he apparently mastered all the pinball games at Pinball Pete’s tonight.)  

 

st bar blue snowflake divider

Anyway,   Sled Legs –  highly recommended!

.

 

CHRISTMAS DAYS

Posted December 28, 2017 by thesprucetunnel
Categories: Christmas, Family, Holiday, Sunlight

Tags: , , ,

We participated in our country’s Christmas snowstorms.    Enjoy a little snowy drive with  me.

It’s enough to give weather forecasting a bad name:

1 temp pic

See that weather forecast for  O   in.  of precipitation?    As in no inches for Christmas Day.    Well,  this is what it was doing outside:

1 backyard storm

About 7 inches, Christmas Day.  Not as much as what some of you had, I know.

It was beautiful, but I had to drive out  to Christmas Mass in all that snow.   Snow  plows on vacation, I think.

2.2 snowy branches

Other cars had gone before me and cleared some tracks.  Honestly,  it was a pretty day.

6 white out

Roads got better in the city, but it was harder to see.

Here’s the skyline of our little city with the big capitol building right straight up ahead:

6.8 Skyline up

Our clock tower:

CLOCK

I was going to make it in time,   to a snowy, misty church building —

5.5 church arrived

Again,  really lovely in the snowfall.

Sleepy as I was that early in the morning and challenging as the drive was,  I’m glad I made the effort.    It always feels better after being present for a Mass,  feels brighter and stronger inside me;    and then,  even the sky changed on my way home.

5 Sunburst

The sky had turned an “innocent blue”   in just about an hour.

5.5 Innocent blue sky

On my way into the city, I could hardly see the beautiful  campus I drive through,  but now the buildings could be seen clearly.

7 sunny campus buildings

I always enjoy their classic beauty.   This   is just one  little peek.     It’s a large Big Ten campus.   There’s a very nice “other” church in the  campus area:

8 sunny campus church

It’s one of those friendly, all-purpose churches where there’s nothing too much to believe in, you just have to be nice, be friendly to everyone.  I think it’s called an “open”  church.  I’ve been inside when one of my children had a concert in there.  It’s really, really pretty, all stone, even around the large wrap-around second-story choir lofts.     Stone walls, stone floors.     Dark wood benches, if I remember correctly.     Like the inside of a castle . . . .

Arriving home, the clouds returned,  but everything was nice and frosted in my neighborhood  –

4 frosted christmnas trees

Ready to have my little California family start their Christmas Day.

Later on those California people and Son traveled all the way off to festivities in Detroit on a day of plunging temperatures.    Here are Detroiters, bundled up in  -9 degrees:

Fireworks 380

That’s  minus 9.   Bundled up !  and watching fireworks.

Daughter’s face;  playing around — outdoors:

Dauighter Too 260

They all had brought their ice skates but there was too many other things to do in the city.

Cities can be so glamorous during Christmas holiday season.

Cold too, so they had “warming centers”  which were actually pretty nice.    Here are the three big guys of my little family at an activity center in the “warming tent”:

Detroit Market 260

Weather was a big player in our Christmas celebrations.

 

bars xmas boughs and bells

 

One big holiday recommendation:   Forget what all the critics are saying about the new Star Wars movie, positive or negative.  Just go see   Star Wars: The Last Jedi – and preferably in 3D!    Enjoy the fun!

‘Tis the Season for merriment!!!!!!