Thursday, March 31, 2016

SOC Cards and Games

In case you are wondering what SOC means, it is the acronym for Spirit of Christ. On the last Thursday of the month, a group, mostly parishioners, gathers to play cards (Pinochle) and Dominoes. I usually do not
attend these games because I am not a card person and I don't play Dominoes, but today I would be learning a new game.

The "party" begins with a pot luck lunch and after eating, everyone begins playing their favorite game. Mostly, tables of four but I did see some tables with more players. I could hear laughter and talking among the many players.

Not too long ago some friends introduced me to a game named Quiddler. Even though it is played with cards it resembles a short word Scrabble. The object of the game is to spell out words as the cards are dealt to you. Each card is worth points and the longer the word you can spell, the better. The information on the box lets players know how much fun they will have by playing Quiddler!

For the fun of words.
The challenge is to arrange your
entire hand into words.
Draw and discard each turn.
Try to use your high point letters,
but don't get caught with
them in your hand.
The game has 8 rounds.
Each player has 3 cards in the first round,
4 in the second, and so on up to 10.
Bonuses are for the most words
and for the longest word.

There are 118 cards and up to 8 persons can play. The Z is worth 14 points and double letters
adds 10 points to your score. Of course, if you are left holding those high numbered cards they count against you. Today was learning day so we did not keep score but the next time we play it will be for real!
The Quiddler Players

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

A Gracious Hostess

Sometimes, a person comes into your life that is kind, beautiful, full of good stories, and a great cook.
She loves to entertain and I have been fortunate to be invited a few times to eat her Italian fare. Today we had Ravioli, sausages, meatballs, bean salad, among other things for our main dish. Then, out came her cream puffs and a platter of Italian cookies. Wine, pop, decaf coffee and Italian coffee in small cups ended our lunch.

If you happen to be invited to her home for a lunch be sure and go because you will never leave hungry. There were six of us and I wondered how the lunch would be because we all came from different backgrounds. There was a man who worked in the school system in safety, a man who used to be a coach, a priest from Spirit of Christ Catholic Community, a friend who is the President of the Young at Heart group, the Italian hostess who loves Elvis Presley and me with my camera. What a combination of subjects traveled around the table as we shared stories. It is always interesting to hear other people's lives!

"The trouble with eating
 Italian food is that five
or six days later you
are hungry again!"
George Miller

Monday, March 28, 2016

I'm Late, I'm Late, For a Very Important Date

Borrowing lines from Alice in Wonderland, I also forgot a very important date. Last week my mind was twirling around many things making me forget the important date. Last week my mind was on certain things: Like trying to learn a new computer and getting help from people with accents from Asia and India; fighting with my insurance company who sent my electronic check to an account where there was no money; Holy Week services; helping out with a sick friend; a gigantic snowstorm; having to change plans that I had made for an arranged trip, dealing with a Netflix lost gift card, and buying and preparing food for Easter dinner.

On the 27 of March, a date I never forget, my daughter called to wish me a Happy Easter. In the course of the conversation she mentioned they were giving their daughter some gifts. When I asked why she was getting gifts, she asked, "Mom, did you forget today is her birthday? She is nineteen today." I had to admit I had forgotten. her birthday. This was a first for me!

I felt awful. How could this have happened?  Is it that my mind is getting older and more tired? Is something more serious happening? It worried me that I would forget such an important date. I spoke with a friend who is my age and she said, "I did the same thing and it was his sixteenth birthday!"
Her comment made me feel a little bit better. Today I am hustling to send her a gift in form of a gift card with my apologies. She is a sweet young lady and I know it is okay, but from now on I need to pay more attention to my calendar!

To my sweet granddaughter, Happy Birthday!
Hope you had a wonderful day
and from all your work, you got to play.
I send you lots of love on your day,
and hope you enjoyed your special day.
Being nineteen is a special date,
forgive me, for being a few days late.
I know my guilt will soon abate
as I know you continue to celebrate!

March 28, 2016

Sunday, March 27, 2016

A Cold Easter Sunday

Even though it was a cold Easter Sunday morning, I saw many coatless persons, sleeveless dresses and men in short sleeved shirts attending mass at Spirit of Christ Catholic Community. Many were dressed as if it really was a spring day!

As usual, trying to get in and out of the parking lot was a nightmare, though the men directing traffic do the best that they can. Even though I went early, there was still a confrontation between the seven o'clock mass people and the eight-thirty people arriving. After I found a parking spot I joined the many persons already in church. I found a seat but noticed that some persons were standing in the back. I could see empty areas that were being saved.  It upsets me to see people saving spots for their relatives. In church, I believe it should be a first come-first serve basis.

Some choir members wore large spring hats, little girls had head bands with large flowers, men were wearing suits, while some were in jeans. As I looked around I could hear a constant murmur among the congregation.  Words were indistinguishable and at times sounded like ocean waves, a flock of birds, or trees rustling in the wind. I couldn't help but think that on this perfect Easter morning it was like one, big, happy family. It no longer was a cold Easter Sunday, but a holy and warm one.

My attention was drawn to the rays of sunlight coming in from the east windows. A feeling came over me that Christ had surely risen and those rays represented his being in heaven. As I saw smoke-like swirling in the rays, I tried to see if an image like a dove, sheep, cross, etc. would appear. Nothing appeared but the rays themselves were spectacular to see.

Our pastor gave a stirring and beautiful sermon beginning with A Tale of Two Cities and tying it to love and mercy. "Christ showed us love and gave us mercy."  I felt a twinge of sadness on this wonderful Easter morning because this would be the last Easter sermon our priest would give at Spirit of Christ because he was moving somewhere south. Then, I perked right up when I thought, hey he is not dying, he will still be around, he's not going that far away, so there's no need to feel sad!

When he asked the questions that are asked at Baptism, the people answered, "I do," in loud, firm voices. It was exciting to see the many persons who believe in their Catholic faith.  Before giving the final blessing, he said, "Since the sermon was on love and mercy, please show your love as you leave and find yourself in traffic and show mercy to those who get in front of you!"

He is risen! Alleluia!

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Another St. Francis of Assisi?

Bernie Sanders's believes there was symbolism in the bird landing and perching on his podium; he is asking for world peace, March 25, 2016
While watching the news, a tiny bird joined the audience at a rally for Bernie Sanders. The bird, a Finch, then flew to the podium right in front of the man running for president of the United States. Could this have been a sign? The thought that entered my mind was how St. Francis of Assisi was surrounded by animals and birds. The little bird perched on the edge of the podium and seemed to look at Mr. Sanders. Uhmmmm, interesting. The bird was called Birdie Sanders and Bernie Sanders make a comment that it was a substitute dove wanting world peace! The audience went wild and in the news clip the audience gives the bird a standing ovation!

An Innocent Man Dies

Crucified Christ at Spirit of Christ Catholic Community is not as gruesome as others I have seen. I can look at this cross with Jesus on it and feel bad but not horrified. Yet, through Netflix I received The Passion, directed by Mel Gibson, and after ten minutes I could not watch anymore. The beatings, blood, bruising and insults were too much for me. It wasn't just the bloody face and body of Jesus, but anyone getting beat up like that would have turned me off!  I can't even imagine the pain that He would have been feeling. I do not like violence and Christ's crucifixion is extremely violent. I remember a Jesuit explaining to a class that any man being treated as Jesus was would not have been able to survive such brutality to his body.

At Spirit of Christ on Good Friday, services begin at nine in the morning with The Lamentations of Jeremiah followed by Objects of  the Cross
at noon. I did not attend those services but did go to the one o'clock service (reflections of men and women who were present at Calvary) and the two o'clock, Tenebrae (darkness or shadow), The Seven Last Words of Christ. Every time one of his last words were read, a candle from the nine candle holder was put out. The last words spoken by Christ were:

"Father, forgive them, for they don't know what they are doing" Luke 23:34
"I assure you, today you will be with me in paradise." Luke 23:43
"Dear woman, here is your son." John 19:26
"My God, my God, why have you abandoned me? Mark 15:34
"I am thirsty." John:19:28
"It is finished." John 19:30
"Father, I entrust my spirit into your hands." Luke 23:46

I have heard that in some places when the last candle is snuffed out the church is in total darkness while people meditate about Christ's death. That would be very effective.

The Prayers around the Cross and the Veneration of the Cross I did not attend but I am sure they were as moving as the services I did attend. Now, we wait for the empty tomb which is celebrated at the Easter Vigil on Saturday evening. Sunday everyone dons spring outfits (if it doesn't snow) to celebrate Christ's ascension into heaven.

Wishing my readers a
Holy and Blessed Easter season!

Friday, March 25, 2016

What Ever Happened To Thunder?

While writing about my friend in a previous blog,  I started thinking about his dogs. Thunder and Lightning were two Puli dogs. One was white and the other was black. They were kept trimmed because if left untrimmed they ended up with long curls, much like dreadlocks. I never saw their eyes which was strange but they seemed to manage all right as they moved through the house. Those two dogs were smart and seemed to know what he was thinking. When I met them, the two dogs were friendly and liked to jump up on the chair with me.

Puli dogs are working dogs and from what I have read they help on sheep farms. My friend told me he drove to Kansas or Nebraska to pick up the two Puli dogs. The first time I visited my friend, Thunder stood up on his hind legs and with his front paws pushed me along. "That's how they herd sheep, by making sure the sheep move, they push them," my friend told me. I found out that the breed is affectionate, protective, loyal and do not shed.

It was sad when Lightning died and Thunder was left alone. My friend told me that he could tell that Thunder missed Lighting. Then, my friend became ill and went into hospice care. This is where my memory leaves me. I recall going to his home to find some items he needed and Thunder was there. I remember sitting in the chair and holding Thunder while I cried for my friend. I do recall Thunder seemed very happy to see me and followed me from room to room as I gathered what my friend needed.
Then, it's a blank. I do not remember feeding Thunder. I do not remember what happened to him. It's as if he never existed after that first visit. Did my friend call someone to come get Thunder? Was Thunder given to a neighbor? What ever happened to Thunder will remain a mystery to me. I texted my daughter to see if I had ever mentioned what happened to the dog and she said she didn't have a clue.

My guess is that people who suffer from dementia or Alzheimer's must feel the same way. The memory is erased from the mind.

The pictures are from the Internet because I never took pictures of Thunder and Lighting. Makes me wonder why, since I point my camera at everything I see!

Happy Birthday, My Friend

March 23, 2016 was my friend's birthday. This friend was fun to be around because he had a great sense of humor. And, I liked that he laughed at my jokes. Plus, he could dance. When we would go out to eat and I'd make a silly remark, I enjoyed watching him laugh so hard that tears ran down his cheeks.

He was my ballroom dancer and we would dance up a storm! He could lead like no other dancer I knew. He lead me through jitterbugs, waltzes or fox trots. He always told me I was a good dancer and easy to lead and that made me feel good. When ever a big band was in town, we would be one of the first couples on the floor. It didn't bother him that I had country and western, polka, or Latin dancers and encouraged me to enjoy myself. "I love to see you happy," he would say.

It was fun to listen to his huge collection of LP's. Most were those big bands of long ago.  Sometimes, which was usually always, as we listened to the music we ended up dancing in his front room. He was patient and taught me certain moves that we could try when we got on the dance floor.

When I was going through that ugly time of menopause, he would talk me out of my depressed moods. I know it would have been more difficult for me if he hadn't been around. For my birthday he gave me a gift of a new camera, exactly like his, so we could both enjoy going to the mountains to take pictures of wild flowers or wild animals. Local lakes found us photographing ducks or clouds.

A gift he gave me, and I treasure, hangs on my wall, A  plaque with two words. "You're Special." I felt the same way about him.

I've never had a friend quite like him. He boosted by self-esteem, he made me happy and I miss him.  He died on August 11, 1998 and was buried at Ft. Logan with Military Honors. To read more about my friend, see my blog of August 14, 2012 under A Friend That Will Never be Forgotten. 

Thursday, March 24, 2016

A Tale of Two Books

It was almost four weeks ago that I began reading The Cloud Forest: A Chronicle of the South American Wilderness by Peter Matthiessen. The story, if it can be called a story, is a travel log of Matthiessen's traveling through South America. For me, it was tedious and it seemed as if I read about one more bird, I was gong to toss my Kindle into the trash! On one page he mentioned around nine birds. I looked some of them up but after awhile they all began to look the same! The part I found myself perking up was his trip through Peru. I had visited Peru and could identify with what he was writing. He describes plants, birds, and rivers which I don't care about, yet I did like his descriptions of the native tribes. A friend who had read the book said, "What a wonderful book, I loved it! And my sister loved it also!"

I trudged through the pages, found myself skimming and when I got to 33% I knew I had enough. If I like a book I can finish it in less than three days; what did four weeks with this book tell me? I figured I would rather be finding my way through the jungles or riding in a boat instead of reading about someone else's adventures.  I do wonder how someone can love a story and I find it on the side of boring.  I put the story aside for another time, and began reading The Wisdom of Compassion by Dalai Lama and Victor Chan.

Now, here was a book I liked. From the first pages, I was hooked and wanted to know more about the Dalai Lama. I liked the quotes and even though I am at 10%, I realized I had read more in an hour than I had by struggling through The Cloud Forest. In those first few pages I learned about the Kalachkakra Empowerment, a gathering of many for eleven days in a Buddhist ritual to enhance world peace. That a Tibetan greeting is a white silk scarf that is wrapped around a visitor's neck. It was interesting that some people go to see him because they are curious, drawn to him because he is a celebrity or for self help. His main message is that our goal should be to be happy. Maybe by the time I finish the book I will know the secret of not suffering and being happy.

Plans for the Dalai Lama to visit Boulder are for June 23, 2016. He had planned to be in Boulder in October, 2015 but had to cancel because of his health. More information will be coming at a later date. I, for one, would like to go see him.

"You can't separate peace
from freedom because no one
is at peace until he has freedom."
Tibetan Association of Colorado   

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Deli Corned Beef vs. Corned Beef Brisket

On and around March 17th, it seemed that I had my fill of corned beef brisket  and cabbage. Visiting a friend recuperating from an operation, she said, "Do you know what I am craving? I would like to have a corned beef sandwich." I told her I would prepare corned beef for her so she could have it whenever she wanted corned beef.

I stopped at King Soopers and the only cabbage they had were huge heads of cabbage, about the size of my head! The produce clerk was kind enough to cut one in half for me. I looked and looked in the meat counter but to my dismay, I was told they no longer had any corned beef brisket. The clerk told me she thought everyone in Arvada was out of it. "Even the warehouse is out of it." she said. I went to the deli and purchased one pound of the corned beef sliced a little thicker than a nickel.  At home I prepared potatoes, carrots and cabbage. I placed the corned beef slices over the cooked food and took it to my friend's home. I hope she liked it, even though it was not, what I consider to be, the real thing!

Today, as the snow was swirling and falling, I looked in the refrigerator and saw I had part of the cabbage left and two slices of the corned beef.  I prepared myself a plate of corned beef and cabbage with carrots. It was okay but not like the corned beef brisket that is cooked at home. I enjoyed my lunch and probably will not have corned beef and cabbage for another year!

A Blizzard in March

After a good night's rest, I opened my eyes at six-twenty, said good morning to God and his Mother, turned on the television and every station was talking about the horrible weather conditions. The pictures on the screen did not look bad. I could see pavement in some of the pictures. What a bunch of wimps, I thought. It doesn't look so bad. When I heard that schools were closing, I decided to get up and take a look outside.

A white, beautiful world greeted me. As I opened the screen door a waft of cold air hit me and the cool mist hitting my face gave me a shock and took my breath away. Now, I could clearly see what the newscasters were talking about--it really was a blizzard!

Blizzard:  Severe snowstorm with strong sustained winds
of at least 35 miles per hour.

Let it snow
let it blow
a white wonderland
of cold air
I don't care
staying in
with a good book.
E. Moscoso
March 23, 2016

12:30 P.M.

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

A Dilemma During Mass

A week ago while at mass, I figure there were about ten persons who did not get anything from mass, myself included. Somehow, the antics of the family sitting in front of me seemed to take over for those sitting behind the family.

A couple of rows in front of me sat two parents with a young son, about two years old.  He was passed back to another couple sitting behind them and directly in front of me. The little boy seemed to be okay but he was getting a lot of attention from, which I assume was a grandmother, sitting next to the first couple two rows away from me. She literally turned her back to the altar and stared at the little boy for ten minute increments. I could tell she was very proud of the little boy. Then, the lady sitting next to couple number two, also began staring at the little boy with a smile. She would reach over and try to hold the little boy's hand.  The most amazing thing to me was when the mother, which I assume was the mother, would lean over to give the little boy instructions on how to behave in church. She would lean over the back of the pew and with a stern look on her face would whisper warnings to the little boy. I thought she was leaning too far and that she might fall over the back of the pew. I could not see that the little boy was doing anything to be disciplined in the way she must have thought.  I'd say she leaned over about six different times and completely turned way from the altar. I do not know what made her think the little boy understood anything she was saying. The father, not to be left out of the action, would also turn to see what his wife was doing. It was strange to see two people with their backs toward the altar. The man holding the boy, which I assume was the uncle, spent lots of time trying to find out if the little boy needed anything. Before long the little boy had crackers, a toy truck, and a collection envelope, from a grandmother, in his hand. The wife (aunt) left and returned with her two children. I say her children because they looked like her. Now, out came the toys and the little girl and the little boy began
playing with Barbie like dolls. The uncle had to straighten the doll's hair and snap on the blouse. The older boy went some where behind me to play with his toy car and his mother went with him. This commotion went on throughout the mass making it difficult to concentrate on why I was at mass. One of the grandmothers spent time trying to hook a necklace on the little girl. They all left right after communion. The lady sitting next to me and I exchanged glances when the stern mother turned, when the little boy was hitting his car against the back of the bench or when he tried to crawl under the pew.

Here is my question. Should children be brought to mass? I understand that parents want to get  children into the habit of attending mass, but does anyone know what is happening at mass? Do they get anything out of mass? From what I could see, no one in the pews in front of me seemed to be paying any attention to the mass in progress. What I do know is that they did contribute to a disturbance. I don't believe anyone got any thing out of mass, including me.

I figured it was a one time happening until Palm Sunday. The church was decorated in red banners, trumpets blared, singing was beautiful and the mass began. It was like a signal for the little girl behind me to begin her noisy talking or singing to herself.  I have heard that the homily was wonderful but I only heard parts of it. Behind me, the little girl jabbered away. She was loud enough to keep me from hearing the homily. She seemed to hum and then to make other noises while, what seemed, having a conversation with herself.

The family next to me with four children, around the ages of 10, 8, 5 an 3, sat quietly during the mass. Those four children did not fidget but held the palms in their hands. The family behind me either have learned to turn the little girl out or they do not care. I thought the little girl was younger but when I saw her trying to crawl away from her parents, I figured she was around four years old. The mother would grab her leg and drag her back to the pew. The child's singing, humming, talking was very disruptive to me and I would guess for anyone sitting near that family. Not once did the parents take the girl out but let her continue her sing-song talking in her high voice. I aimed the camera to get a picture of the noisy girl and the photo looks as if the mother is trying to quiet the child.

I offered my discomfort to God because the child might be pleasing to the Lord. She certainly was not pleasing to me and I felt as if I had missed what the priest was saying. I almost said something to the parents but figured it wasn't my duty to try and correct other peoples' children. How others have spoiled my attendance at mass makes me think that maybe there is a reason. When the Holy Spirit  wants me to hear what is being said, maybe He will not put disruptive people around me!

How can this dilemma be corrected. I like churches with crying rooms but my parish does not have one so people have to suffer and pray that
kids behave! A parishioner told me that if she is around noisy or sick children, she moves. Maybe that is what I need to do!

"We need to find God, and he cannot be found
in noise and restlessness.
God is the friend of silence.
See how nature--trees, flowers, grass--grow in silence;  
all the stars, the moon and the sun,
how they move in silence.
We need silence to be able to touch souls."
Mother Teresa

Monday, March 21, 2016

Curandera or Witch?

One of my favorite stories is Bless Me Ultima by Rudolfo Anaya. The story is set in New Mexico and parts of the book reminded me of things my parents would tell me. While working on genealogy, I found out that my great-grandmother was buried in Pastura, New Mexico, which is where Mr. Anaya was born. Makes me wonder if his parents and my family knew each other since Pastura is a small town.

Today I was invited to attend the play Bless Me Ultima at the Su Teatro Cultural and Preforming Arts Center. Rudolfo Anaya wrote the script for the play and it was directed by Anthony J. Garcia. I was impressed by the professionalism of the actors and how well they portrayed the characters in the book. The play begins with a man sitting in a rocking chair and resembling a young Rudolfo Anaya. The character is on stage the whole time because he is in the process of writing Bless Me Ultima. As he recalls certain things from his past, the actors act out the part. It was very well done and even though there were no curtains to drop or pull and we could see the props being moved, it did not take anything away from the play.
The story is about a young boy who is filled with confusion about God, good, evil, spirits, witches, religion, his father (who is a cowboy) and his mother (who comes from farmers). He is learning about life from the curandera named Ultima. Of course, some believe she is a witch while others believe
she is a healer.  Some of her lines still ring true today. "Good beats out evil or that dreams come from the soul." The owl is Ultima's spirit and if the owl is killed, Ultima will also die. The story is humorous, has angry and scary parts, (when guns are shot) and happy parts. It has the innocence of children and the wise understanding of adults. I thought it was clever how death was represented with a white skull mask. I heard that some of the actors were from Metropolitan State University.

The theater is small making it easy to hear because none of the actors had microphones. I would rate the stage on the shabby side and wondered if there was a fire how everyone would be able to get out through the one door and hall. Aside from those areas of concern, the play was excellent and entertaining.  I enjoyed watching the story I had read performed before my eyes!

After the play, the actors lined up and greeted all the persons leaving the theater. I liked that I was able to tell some of the actors how much I had enjoyed the play. I took a picture of the two boys in the play and had my picture taken with the Anaya character and the owl.

Many of the theater goers ended up at Noa Noa, a Mexican Restaurant across the street from the theater.  Eating with my friends was enjoyable, the food was delicious and our conversations were fun! We passed a good hour and a half eating, talking and laughing. All I know is that two days in a row, eating Mexican food, must surely have put a few more pounds on my body! Oh well, I will worry about it manana!

"Good is always stronger than evil.
Always remember that the smallest
bit of good can stand against the
powers of evil in the world and it
will emerge triumphant."
Rudolfo Anaya

Sunday, March 20, 2016

Voices and Strings

Today, at the Arvada United Methodist Church, the Arvada Chorale performed With A Voice of Singers. This was the second time I listened to the marvelous singing directed by Marla Wasson. The first Chorale happened to be a Christmas show with lots of peppy numbers. Today, it was quite different; poetry set to music. The poems were on screens so the audience could follow the words
while the singers made the words come to life. I liked The Raccoon, Hawks, and The Squirrel written by Rosalind May. This Marriage and Prayer of St. Francis were beautiful and the comical one was an Ode to a Sleepless Parent. I believe what amazed me the most was how the harmonizing, the soft then loud, and the high and the low voices become beautiful music that sometimes sound like instruments!

Chamber music is not my favorite, yet the four musicians were impressive. Two violins, one viola and one cello made me feel sad, happy and at times joyful. The program listed the players as Artur Korotin, Violin 1; Simone Hammett-Lynch, Violin II; Barbara Hamilton, Viola; and Jeffrey Watson, Cello. I learned some Russian history about how musicians had to play or write only music that was approved by the government. Dimitri Shostakovich, a composer and pianist, hated what had become of his country but did not leave for fear his family might suffer. He wrote "lively music that would lift the people up," and in secret he wrote what his heart felt like writing.

After the concert we ate at Santiago's Mexican Restaurant and felt content. Beautiful music and good food completed our Saturday  afternoon!

We've Come Along Way

Four friends met to watch a movie. We ate popcorn and once the DVD was set up we watched the movie Suffragettes.  I found the movie to be sad, yet in some respects, inspiring. It made me realize how hard it has been for women to get to vote and to be treated fairly and equally. I was shocked at the way men treated women in England and how hard women tried to be heard. Some of the women left husbands and children to join the fight for equality.

The impression I got from the movie is that a woman was a man's property. The main character finds this out when she is thrown out of her home and her child given away. Even though she knew women were not treated fairly, her husband's actions forces her to join the suffragettes and fight the double standards. The scenes of how the police manhandled the women was cruel and hateful. Jailing the women and keeping them locked up in ugly conditions was horrible to watch. At one point, there is a terrible scene of force feeding the main character. Women factory workers were pawns and male owners could do as they pleased with the female workers. One supervisor in the movie went after a young girl and I hated watching the leering man touch the young girl.

When the women decide to go directly to the king as he attends a horse race, I thought that maybe things would change. They changed all right, but not as I thought it would. I will not tell how the movie ends in case you want to see it. It is a good movie but quite depressing. 

My thoughts are that every women who is able to vote should get out and vote. The women in the past fought courageous battles for the right to vote and we should not be lazy about casting our vote. Voting is a privilege we should be honored to do!

After the movie we enjoyed dinner with salad, a large cheese and vegetable pizza and a glass of wine!

"I thought I had been a suffragist
before I became a Poor Law Guardian,
but now I began to think about the
vote in woman's hands not only as
a right but as a desperate necessity."
Emmeline Pankhurst

About the same time as I was writing my blog about Suffragettes I received an e-mail from a friend of mine that seem to fit right into the subject of voting. I will paraphrase the e-mail.

Stage coach companies were big businesses in the past. Passengers, freight, gold and silver were carried on the stage coach. Bandits and robberies were a constant threat and the drivers were skilled and fearless men. Charles Darkey Parkhurst was a driver and his feats were extraordinary. He was a good shot and could slice open the end of an envelope or knock a cigar out of a mouth. He chewed tobacco, smoked, and drank. He died at the age of sixty-seven in the year of 1879.

His obituary: On Sunday last there died a person known as Charley Parkhurst, Age 67, who was well known to residents as a stage coach driver He was in early days acclaimed one of the most expert manipulators of the reins. It was discovered when friendly hands were preparing him for his final rest that Charley Parkhurst was unmistakably a well-developed woman. Her name was Charlotte Parkhurst that had discovered life as a man was easier and masqueraded as one for the rest of her life. She voted on November 3, 1868, dressed as a man, which was fifty-two years before women were given the right to vote! 

Friday, March 18, 2016

A Day of Green

St. Patrick, patron saint of Ireland, has become a religious and cultural holiday. Parades, parties and wearing green are popular on March 17. I did not know much about St. Patrick's life, other than he had gotten rid of snakes from Ireland, until I googled his name. He was born in England, kidnapped by Irish pirates, became a slave and worked as a sheep herder until he escaped. He had the calling to become a missionary, was ordained a priest, spread the Christian faith throughout Ireland for forty years, became a Bishop and finally, a Saint.

Yesterday, Spirit of Christ Catholic Community, Young At Heart group, had a corned beef and cabbage dinner, the Heritage Irish Step Dancers, and lots of fun and laughter. The color green was a popular color: hats, sweaters, hair, flashing necklaces, stockings, and table decorations. I am not sure if those attending are aware of the work that goes into putting on an affair as we had last night.

Cooks come in early to chop, cut, mix, boil and prepare the food.  Servers come in to help set out the food. Desserts are cut up and set out. Decorators come in to make the tables look festive. The wine and pop person is busy during happy hour. Announcements and jokes are prepared to relay to the crowd.  A photo board is set out for all to enjoy. Someone is needed to set up tables and an amplifying system. A clean up crew to take down decorations and get the trash to the dumpster.  If it takes a village to raise a child, it takes many hands to have a successful gathering!

Irish Sayings:

"An Irishman is never
drunk as long as he can
hold onto one blade
of grass to keep from
falling off the earth"

Life is like a cup of tea;
it's all in how you make it!"

Thursday, March 17, 2016

A Crown of Thorns

While at Spirit of Christ Catholic Community, a stranger came up to me and said, "Have you seen the plant? It is blooming."

My response was, "What plant?"

She smiled and said, "It's the Crown of Thorns plant, come over here and I will show it to you."

I followed her through a crowd of people milling around the vestibul and to a green plant; it had thorns like a rose bush, and shaped into a crown. A few orange-peach colored flowers were starting to bloom. "See," she said, "it looks just like a crown of thorns."

The plant is beautiful and, sure enough, resembles a crown. I thanked the stranger for leading me to the plant because I had never seen a plant that so vividly brought to mind Christ's Crown of Thorns.