Saturday, November 16, 2013

Is the suspense killing you?

I still haven't returned to this blog, but I want to do so.  Time is precious isn't it? I need to make the time for this. It always made me feel creative.

Monday, September 02, 2013

Wow. This blog is still active. I'm starting to get a yen to write on it again, but what would I write? My thoughts? My deeds? My lack of both? Hmm......tune in tomorrow.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Still haven't gotten back to writing on this blog, but I think I am going to keep trying. Don't give up on me blogger!

Tuesday, June 28, 2011


My New Best Friend


Last September I accepted, on a temporary basis, a small, white poodle mix who was recovering from hip surgery. Well, now it is July, and she is still here. I don't think she is going anywhere. Here's a picture.




Sunday, May 16, 2010

Hamster Widget

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Neglected Blog

I wonder how many blogs there are floating around in cyberspace, abandoned, because of Twitter and Facebook. I know that, since I started Facebook, my attention to this blog has waned considerably. I need to think of new ways to use this blog creatively.

Sunday, January 03, 2010


Three weird Christmas traditions....(not sensible ones like Reindeer with glowing red-noses)

Black Pete
In the folklore and legends of the Netherlands and Flanders, Zwarte Piet ( pronunciation (help·info)) (meaning Black Pete) is a companion of Saint Nicholas (Dutch: Sinterklaas) whose yearly feast in the Netherlands is usually on the evening of 5 December (Sinterklaas-avond, that is St. Nicolas Eve) and 6 December in Flanders, when they distribute presents to all good children.

The character of Zwarte Piet appears only in the weeks before Saint Nicholas's feast, first when the saint is welcomed with a parade as he arrives in the country (in the Netherlands by steam boat, from Spain), and is mainly targeted at children, who come to meet the saint as he visits stores, schools etc.

La Befana

La Befana
Christian legend has it that La Befana was approached by the magi (the biblical three kings) a few days before Christ's birth. They asked for directions to where the baby Jesus was, but she did not know. She provided them with shelter for a night, as she was considered the best housekeeper in the village with the most pleasant home. They invited her to join them on the journey to find the baby Jesus, but she declined, stating she was too busy with her housework. Later, La Befana had a change of heart, and tried to search out the astrologers and Jesus. That night she was not able to find them, so to this day, La Befana is searching for the baby Jesus. She leaves all the good children toys and candy, while the bad children get coal or bags of ashes.

Another Christian legend takes a slightly darker tone as La Befana was an ordinary woman with a child whom she greatly loved. However, her child died, and her resulting grief maddened her. Upon hearing news of Jesus being born, she set out to see him, delusional that he was her son. She eventually met Jesus and presented him with gifts to make him happy. The infant Jesus was delighted, and he gave La Befana a gift in return; she would be the mother of every child in Italy.

Also, popular tradition avers that if one sees La Befana one will receive a thump from her broomstick, as she doesn't wish to be seen. This aspect of the tradition may be designed to keep children in their beds while parents are distributing candy (or coal) and sweeping the floor on Epiphany Eve.

Also, another commonly heard Christian legend of la Befana starts at the time of the birth of baby Jesus.[6] Befana spends her days cleaning and sweeping. One day the magi, also known as the three wise men, came to her door in search of baby Jesus. Befana turned them away because she was too busy cleaning. Befana notices a bright light in the sky; she thinks this is the way to baby Jesus. She brought some baked goods and gifts for baby Jesus in her bag and took her broom to help the new mother clean and began her search for baby Jesus. She searched and searched for Baby Jesus, but never found him. Befana still searches today, after all these centuries. On the eve of the Epiphany, Befana comes to a house where there is a child and leaves a gift. Although she has been unsuccessful in her search, she still leaves gifts for good young children because the Christ Child can be found in all children
Krampus
Krampus is a mythical creature. In various regions of the world – especially Austria and Hungary – it is believed that Krampus accompanies St. Nicholas during the Christmas season, warning and punishing bad children, in contrast to St. Nicholas, who gives gifts to good children. Due to German and Austrian influence, the myth of Krampus is also prevalent in Croatia, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Slovenia and northern Italy.

The word Krampus originates from the Old High German word for claw (Krampen). In the Alpine regions, Krampus is represented by an incubus-like creature. Traditionally, young men dress up as the Krampus in the first two weeks of December, particularly on the evening of December 5, and roam the streets frightening children and women with rusty chains and bells.[1] In some rural areas the tradition also includes birching – corporal punishment with a birch rod – by Krampus, especially of young girls. Images of Krampus usually show him with a basket on his back used to carry away bad children and dump them into the pits of Hell.

Modern Krampus costumes consist of Larve (wooden masks), sheep's skin, and horns. Considerable effort goes into the manufacture of the hand-crafted masks, and many younger adults in rural communities compete in the Krampus events.

In Oberstdorf, in the alpine southwestern part of Bavaria, the tradition of der Wilde Mann ("the wild man") is kept alive. He is like Krampus, but has no horns, is dressed in fur, and frightens children (and adults) with rusty chains and bells, but is not an assistant of Saint Nicholas.

In the aftermath of the Austrian Civil War the Krampus tradition was a target of Austrian Fascists allied with Nazi Germany.[2]