Archive for 2009

Deb’s House Concerts

Once In A Blue Moon

It only happens “once in a blue moon.”  What does that mean? “Once in a blue moon” is a very rare occurrence. A blue moon is not a moon that is blue. It is the 2nd full moon that occurs in the same calendar month as another full moon.

Blue Moon On New Year’s Eve

Tonight there is a blue moon. The moon is full for the 2nd time this month (December 2009). We went to the airport this morning and looked at the moon on the way and talked about it. They saw the full moon when they arrived, and they saw the full moon when they left. And, the one they saw today was spectacular if only for its rarity (even more rare than a blue moon).

Blue Moon Once In 28 Years

The blue moon today is the blue moon on New Year’s Eve, even more rare than a 2nd full moon in the same calendar month. A blue moon on New Year’s Eve only occurs every 28 years. We added 28 to our ages. The children will be in their 30s. The adults will be as old and older than their parents are now. They made a plan to remember this blue moon, an historic event.

Howl at the Moon to Bring in the New Year …

or, just look up and enjoy … or, crawl into bed and snooze into the next decade. Your choice.

Either way …

Happy New Year!

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Not Invited This Time

In most of the things I’ve studied in recent years, I’ve been invited to participate in an honor society, or have been on the Dean’s List, or have been near the top of my class at least during some part of what I’ve been studying. This year, I was not one of the ones invited to join the honor society. I did not know what the requirements were, but I figured I must not have met them, since I was not invited.

Imagine My Surprise

So, I was surprised and very happy to have someone approach me a few weeks back, prior to a ceremony, to check my name off a list and hand me a medallion.  I don’t normally post about things that are directly happening in my life. I prefer to post about ideas. But, I just want to say this was a happy surprise that added to the joy of the day.

Honors Medallion

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Well, thanks!

Thanks for this:

my 2009 nod to exceptional oklahoma bloggers

Posted on December 13th, 2009 by Rena

I just want to tip my hat to some Oklahoma bloggers who have managed to penetrate my haze this year, for their persistence, their regularity, their seeming tirelessness and their apparent ability to be completely self-motivating.

So here’s my list of 2009 bloggers who have earned my respect, just becausethey blogged. (And this in no way is to dismiss their other qualities as astute observers and creative writers.)

Oklahoma Lefty

Carless in OKC

Deb’s House Concerts – Another blogger with passion for music, as well as other creative expression. Thoughts about politics, culture, language, horticulture, nature and anything else that comes along.

Rena from Peace Arena (http://peacearena.org/)

About Peace Arena

PeaceArena.org consists of a blog, wiki, (and soon) news feed and discussion forum. It is owned and produced by Serena Blaiz, the nom de tubes of a longtime progressive political activist and communications professional…  I am a feminist, secular animist and collectivist, working at the grassroots level for peace and justice, previously in Florida, and since 2003 in Oklahoma. Sometimes I get paid for this work, mostly I do it out of a desire to seek justice and build community.

My Introduction to Peace Arena

I heard from Rena when I posted a poll about the font I was using for my blog posts (November 2008). She strongly opposed the font I used, and she was convincing enough in her explanation (about what I was doing wrong) that I changed the way I write my posts. I never heard from her again. So, being chosen by her as a blogger who “managed to penetrate my haze this year” was quite a surprise. Thank you, Rena.

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Last night, I finally made the truffles for this year, and I spray painted the birdhouses, just to put a base coat on them. Today, the kids painted the birdhouses.  After days of snow, cold, and rain, we finally had sunshine and enough warmth to be outside for a few hours. The timing was good after all. Today, we finished the project. Three days after we gave each other gifts, our birdhouse project is finished.

Painting in Shifts

At first, it seemed like only a couple of the children wanted to be part of the project. Then, one by one, they showed up and painted. And, each one talked about how much fun it was to paint. One said it was ‘freeing’. Another thanked me at the end of the day, saying, “Thank you for letting me paint.” After the kids put their touches on the birdhouses with acrylic paints, I sprayed the birdhouses with polyurethane, in an effort to seal the paint, and make it better able to stand the weather.

Excited to Present the Gifts

The children were so excited when they finally were able to show the birdhouses to the adults and tell them which ones were for each one. The adults were enthusiastic and appreciative. The kids were proud of their work.

Long Afternoon

The afternoon craft project started after lunch and lasted almost until dark. It was dark by the time I had the sealer sprayed on and the trash cleaned up. Now, I’m tired, but I’m very happy that my idea for a fun gift for the kids to make (paint) and give came to fruition.  We had a fun afternoon, and they’ll all be able to enjoy their work and watch for birds building nests when spring arrives.

Red, Yellow, and Blue Make Every Color

Here are a few of the photos from the birdhouse project.


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Responding to That Question

It’s late, and I just read about KZ’s Christmas. She asked how it’s been for others. I’m not in her inner circle, but I tend to comment on her blog now and then. And, as I often do, I decided to post most of my comment here as a post of my own. 🙂

What We Did

We went to a Moravian Love Feast on Christmas Eve and had our family time after that.

No Gifts Unless You Made Them Yourself

We went for the “no gifts unless handmade” plan this year, so I got some yummy treats, a necklace made by a nephew, photos of adorable younger members of the family, and a dvd of photos of us when we were young and adorable.

Creating Our Own Definitions

Handmade also seems to have a broader meaning for us, so I also got a 2010 calender from Germany, a hand-stitched, pieced quilt made by the first wife of the 2nd husband of a long deceased sister of a long deceased relative two generations my senior … imagine that! … given by a sibling, a very nice hand-me-down computer case, and a coat that feels so good it should be a down comforter (“from my favorite store” which I’m guessing was Goodwill).

Gifts In Progress

I made truffles tonight (a little late) and the children are painting birdhouses tomorrow (our other in-progress gift). 🙂

Party On

Our party (time together) is still going on with everyone staying around for days lounging, reading, cooking, eating, and playing. It’s been relaxing and very enjoyable.

Savoring the Time We Have Together

We were fortunate to have a good week together. Life is short, and I want to savor every moment.  I know holidays are  not a happy time for everyone every year.  If this holiday was more sad than happy for you, I hope 2010 will bring better times.

How Has It Been For You?

What has happened in your life this past week? Do you celebrate Christmas? Who did you spend your time with? Was it a parties and gifts time? Was there lots of good food? Were there religious services? Decorations? Gifts? To quote KZ, “How was yours? Do tell.”


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I Forgot to Make Truffles

I’ve been so busy this year, I forgot that I like to (try to) make truffles at Christmas time. I thought this year  I’d just melt some chocolate chips and stir in some peanuts or pecans (not both together), drop spoonfuls of it onto waxed paper, and then give those candies for gifts. But, things got so busy right at the last, I even forgot to do that!

Lucky for Me, A Truffle Page Was in the Stats

Say what? Well, I was looking at the referring page info the other day and clicking links to see where visitors were before they came here. Somehow, someone got here from a truffle recipe on another page (Last minute gift:Christmas truffles). So, lucky me, I read that recipe, and it sounded like something I might be able to do successfully.

The Short Story

There’s a long story here, and I’ll probably tell it some day (about in-laws and calculations and conversions between standards of measure), but for tonight it’s enough to say I told the family they could have any that I “messed up” (imperfect balls of melt-in-your- mouth chocolate). So, they said things like, “Someone scare her, so she’ll mess up,” and, “I’ll have some more of your failed chocolate.” Perhaps the most creative was, “That’s too big a gift. You shouldn’t give so many to one person.” (I made a plate of truffles for three neighbors with eight pieces each.) “A gift box of truffles is usually only three pieces. Three pieces is a nice gift.” They needn’t have worried. I left a full plate  for the family, too many to eat at one sitting, even with many people and several pieces each.

Melt in Your Mouth

Melt in your mouth good? Oh, yeah! 🙂 The consistency was just right.  You can pop an entire truffle into your mouth and it just dissolves. Mmmmm. I used three kinds of coatings: powdered sugar, cocoa powder, and cinnamon.

Truffles for You

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Christmas Morning

I hope you’re having happy, happy day. 🙂

Nathan Pacheco Sings Oh Holy Night on the Christmas morning special on ABC this morning.

Singer brings new life to Yanni’s music(interview with Nathan Pacheco, June 2009)
Nathan Pacheco on MySpace
Celebrating the ‘Season of Giving,’ 26th Annual Disney Parks Christmas Day Parade Broadcasts from Both Coasts, Airing on ABC-TV December 25(earthtimes.org)

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