Thursday, December 31, 2009

Blue Moon

New Year's eve will present us with a blue moon. I had no idea until my husband and daughter started talking about it tonight at the dinner table. A blue moon is the 13th full moon in one calendar year - or the second full moon in a calendar month. It only occurs "once in a blue moon." I say that, not to be funny, but to illustrate the way an idiomatic expression can become part of our normal understanding without us knowing its origin. Everyone knows that "once in a blue moon" indicates a rare event. I have often used that expression but had no idea why it had that meaning. So around the dinner table, the light bulb turned on and I will use this expression from now on with a much deeper appreciation for its origin. BTW, I did go to Wikipedia to verify the meaning.

But back to the blue only occurs about once every 2.7 years, but a blue moon on New Year's Eve is even rarer, only occurring about every 20 years. So we're in for a treat. What a fun way to usher in the year 2010!

Just curious...did you already know where this expression came from?

Sunday, December 27, 2009

White Christmas

Since I grew up in Wisconsin with most Christmases being white, it was a special treat this year to have a white Christmas in Texas. The last time we remember a white Christmas in Texas was in 1995 and although it snowed somewhere around Christmas, it probably wasn't on Christmas Eve like this year.

What marked that snowfall in my memory was the fact that our son John was home on break from his first year of college. How delightful it was to watch my family romping in the snow, building a snowman together! They all took great pleasure in playing in the snow, even my husband who was raised in Texas. I don't think I got out and helped with this particular snowman, unless it was to take pictures.

Seeing this year's Christmas Eve snow through the eyes of my almost four year old grandson, made it extra special. He had been asking me for months when it was going to snow. Hmmm...even Grandma didn't have an answer for that question. His excitement was only surpassed by the anticipation of opening all the gifts that were spread out under the tree.

The weather forecast calls for more snow this week and I foresee that this might be a snowman building snow!

Did it snow at your house this Christmas? Or do you have a special memory of a White Christmas?

Monday, December 21, 2009

Special Christmas Memory

One of the special memories of Christmas when I was growing up was the tradition of the Christmas Eve candlelight service at our church. We would scurry around getting all the last minute preparations done including grinding the gizzard, heart and liver of the turkey to mix in the stuffing. Then we would all bundle up and head out the door for the candlelight service. This normally started at 11:00 and was over by midnight. It was one of those enchanted times with everyone singing carols to the light of just the candles. It was always heartwarming. But the most enchanting of all was to come out of the church to find freshly falling snow. I'm sure that didn't happen every single Christmas eve, but it happened often enough to become one of those special memories. Coming down the church steps and making fresh footprints as the snow crunched underfoot was a very special reminder that the reason God took the form of flesh and dwelt among us was so he could wash us whiter than snow. That's what we celebrate every day of the year, but especially at Christmas time.

What is your special Christmas memory?

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Healthy Food Choices

I just read a post by a friend telling about her son's preference for healthy food. He even asked her to make something healthier for him when he found out that pizza was on the menu. That reminded me of John's interest in healthy food, too. For several years we kept a "food target" on our refrigerator and once in awhile he would get up from the table and go and look at the target to see if what we were having for supper was healthy or not. But in spite of that, he had a weakness for pickles which, incidentally are on the OUTSIDE ring of the food target. Every year we gave him a jar of pickles for Christmas just because he loved them so much. I'm sure that started when he was about 4 or 5 and we were home on a furlough from the mission field. His grandfather would occasionally take him out for a pickle at a place where they were sold out of a huge crock setting on the counter. Come to think of it, I guess his grandfather also had a weakness for pickles...something that skipped a generation since my husband can take 'em or leave 'em. Oh what fond memories! Do you have any food related ones to share?