Now don’t get me wrong I have a lot to be grateful for an awesome family some pretty rockin friends and an apartment I can be not ashamed to be seen going in and out of (aka NOT a scuzzy hole in the wall). That is what brought me around to the conclusion that HOLY SHIT things can and do get better! Only took me almost 30 years to get that through my thick skull. Don’t get me wrong I am not going all happy-go-lucky Mary Poppins on you ,I want to shoot that woman’s umbrella out of the sky. Just kinda noticed that there is always more than one option sometimes more than that. For example my building AC had died the other day not a huge deal I will just go swimming oh cripes the pool is closed (lifeguards glass table blew into it). So did I freak out no, no I did not I got a giant glass of lemonade filled the tub up slipped the kindle in a ziplock baggie and had my own private pool I would say Jacuzzi but well even with me in there sadly no bubbles. But quite often alas my life does feel incomplete I need a job of course but I also want my own lil family soon and soon is kinda getting to be a necessity. I love my fur babies with all my heart but some times I want a tiny little human around that will grow up and have an impact on the world granted one never knows what kind of impact that may be… But hey I come from good stock yeah some of it is a tad off those of us that are off make life interesting also there is a very fine line between genius and crazy and maybe my tiny terror could make it to the less ostracized part of that line. I am 9 months in to my “wait a few years before kids” promise to a friend so only 15 months before really serious decisions come into play. Am I scared? Hell yeah! but I know there are options even there I know some where there is a child they may already be here they may be outta my womb. But you know what whatever God gives me he knows what is best for me and the kiddo. So even with those fears ya gotta push forward cause it is my choice whether things continue to get better no matter what the world chucks at me!
As I was perusing different publications this winter I noticed a strong “keep the Christ in Christmas” voice among certain groups of folks and not just hardcore bible thumpers. Nothing new there but another thing I noticed was a sliver of folks who want to have Christmas secular. Well that made me choke on my giant candy cane (where the hell did I put that? I know I didn’t finish it!). So after hearing some things I had known about Christmas celebrations and decorations I was curious when the heck did Christ get put into Christmas? Well Christ himself likely wasn’t born in winter as a few things hint.
- “when shepherds watched their flocks by night.” In other words, most likely in the spring.(bible.org)
- “A more probable time would be late September, the time of the annual Feast of Tabernacles, when such travel was commonly accepted. Thus, it is rather commonly believed (though not certain) that Jesus’ birth was around the last of September. The conception of Christ, however, may have taken place in late December of the previous year. Our Christmas celebration may well be recognized as an honored observation of the incarnation of ‘the Word made flesh’ (John 1:14).”(Christiananswers.net)
- Another site suggested perhaps Passover as being a likely time for a census to be taken as many traveled home for the celebration.
Then one ponders “well why December then?” The churches first three centuries did not celebrate Christmas.So a few different ideas arise.
- December 25 already hosted two other related festivals: natalis solis invicti (the Roman “birth of the unconquered sun”)
- The birthday of Mithras, the Iranian “Sun of Righteousness” whose worship was popular with Roman soldiers.
- The winter solstice, another celebration of the sun, fell just a few days earlier.
So the big guys in charge in those days decided to wedge the birth of Christ into this part of the calendar. It is interesting to note that Origen (c.185-c.254) an early church leader disliked the idea of celebrating Jesus birthday because of Pharaoh and Herod were honored this way!
Now comes our Christmas traditions the things we do to Celebrate the birth of our Savior. These pull from many parts of the worlds as Christianity is a worldwide religion but are any Christ centered besides the placing of the Nativity scene in homes and churches. Here are where some of the most popular arise and why they were or are challenged or disapproved by some sects of Christianity.
1.) Now we could do a whole separate story on the Christmas tree one of the most recognizable symbols of the holiday but I will try to stick to a few points.
- The Egyptians were part of a long line of cultures that treasured and worshiped evergreens. When the winter solstice arrive, they brought green date palm leaves into their homes to symbolize life’s triumph over death. (yes I checked turns out palm trees are evergreens!) [Christmas-tree.com]
- Jeremiah 10:2-4: “Thus saith the LORD, Learn not the way of the heathen, and be not dismayed at the signs of heaven; for the heathen are dismayed at them. For the customs of the people are vain: for one cutteth a tree out of the forest, the work of the hands of the workman, with the axe. They deck it with silver and with gold; they fasten it with nails and with hammers, that it move not.” (King James Version). That is right the Bible says no to indoor tree decoration!
- The Puritans banned Christmas in New England. Even as late as 1851, a Cleveland minister nearly lost his job because he allowed a tree in his church. Schools in Boston stayed open on Christmas Day through 1870, and sometimes expelled students who stayed home. [Christmas-tree.com] Talk about separation of church and state!
2.)Now for some of the smaller decorations and symbols we will sick with three Holly, The Yule Log and Mistletoe.
- Holly and Ivy were originally used for male and female symbolism in some Pagan religions.
- At first, burning a Yule log was a celebration of the winter solstice. In Scandinavia, Yule ran from several weeks before the winter solstice to a couple weeks after. This was the darkest time of year, and the people celebrated because days would start getting longer after the solstice. There was quite a bit of ritual and ceremony tied to the Yule log, for it marked the sun’s rebirth from its southern reaches. The Yule log gets its name from the Scandinavian tradition, but the ritual burning of a special log during winter solstice took place as far west as Ireland, as far south as Greece, and as far north as Siberia. were originally used for male and female symbolism in some Pagan religions. [noelnoelnoel.com]
- From the earliest times mistletoe has been one of the most magical, mysterious, and sacred plants of European folklore. The mistletoe of the sacred oak was especially sacred to the ancient Celtic Druids.Kissing under the mistletoe is first found associated with the Greek festival of Saturnalia and later with primitive marriage rites.
[Read more at http://www.theholidayspot.com/christmas/history/mistletoe.htm#5mto2l4cm2WLXcLc.99]
So needless to say Christmas was declared a Christian holiday and though out the 1700 years or so has acquired many,many traditions from assorted pagan religions. Actually I have yet to come across anything besides displaying a Nativity that is a TRUE display of the celebration of Christ. For the sake of my wrists I am not going to go into Santa he comes from too many cultures to count and yes there is a Saint Nicholas but he didnt go around handing out gifts as we know Saint Nick. But honestly it could never be a secular holiday of any sorts to many religions are involved to do so if you want a secular holiday go with Festivus no religion involved. Oh and as far as Xmas is concerned it has been used for over 200 years it appears our ancestors were also lazy writers. The “-mas” part is from the Latin-derived Old English word for Mass, while the “X” comes from the Greek letter Chi, which is the first letter of the Greek word Χριστός, translated as “Christ“.
For many years I have worried about my mind. Not the whole “holy crap the DSM shit on me” part. The wonderfully immature part that makes the word duty hilarious. The part that makes Flarp entertaining. The part that makes random innocuous words, names and phrases naughty.
Seriously its bad. I think when my brother dropped me and dented my head he knocked out the filters going in and out. Its well known I have a rampant case of verbal diarrhea, stuff just pours out of my mouth. But on the way in a normal almost 30 year old female can drive by Cumnock Hall on Umass Lowells north campus with out giggling. out loud. on the bus. Now I have surmised there is a slight genetic component (Mom) as some aunts and cousins and such are a tad immature in the humor department. But hell I snort aloud reading stuff online then I try to explain myself but unless I am hanging with my maternal crew it usually whooshes by people. Cant really say over their head it’s more like above their gutters… For instance my friend just got oral antibiotics I proceed to say oral and crack up. But to be be fair I didn’t sleep.
With a gaggle of little ones now in the family am I going to rub off on the younger generation (note: just said rub off)? If it is genetically likely, does it really matter? I mean heck I relieve so much stress cracking up at randomness in my head do I really want to censor my brain? Not really no, I like my twisted mind it is uniquely mine. I wish I could organize it a bit better get a file cabinet or something. Then again if my thoughts were organized would my life follow? hmmm.Scary.
Once again up all night. In my wanderings I found some beautiful blogs from the parents of gay and transgendered children. How they raise them knowing who and what they are (gay or straight) is okay to be. How they deal with intolerant family members and communities. How they as parents they love their children unconditionally.
I grew up in a small mainly catholic, republican leaning, upper middle class,white as a ghost town. To put it simply it sucked. I thought there was one newspaper til I was around ten and only saw Fox news. I was taught by actions and the occasional loose racial, ethnic, homosexual slur that it was okay to hate people. That what my environment told me.
I learned very quickly at school I was different although it took until almost adulthood to realize that the bullying was socioeconomic based. Me and my brothers didn’t have the clothes or supplies that our classmates did. At that age I just figured they didn’t like ME. By fourth grade the other kids found a new reason to harass me. I had developed an impulse control disorder that causes me to pull out my hair Trichotillomania. I had by fifth grade made a very noticeable bald spot I was given the moniker bald eagle .Fifth grade was HELL thank you fellow 10 year olds.
The middle school years varied from a benign sense of not belonging to a year of fist fights to the year I did absolutely no school work. The bullying continued for no reason I could find, other than a punching bag was needed. I started punching back literally. I was angry. Rightfully so, but even 17 years ago one could fistfight in a suburban school as a girl and basically just have it dismissed by the school. They still picked on me but from far away and moved PDQ if I stepped towards them. You try this now and you are lucky if you are not expelled.
In eighth grade I could easily see the social groupings at lunch as our whole grade had one meal-time. There were about four tables of girls all in a row. My table was me and three pals who banded together as the social webs loose ends. Tables were in order of popularity with the “nice” girls sitting at the next table over. These girls didn’t usually bother us or bother with us. I was an inquisitive child and thought I would give something a try. I table jumped, yup that is right I bucked the silent laws of the lunch room and moved over one table; just one. I have never seen a more ridiculous/disturbing sight in my life as a good twenty or so girls crammed themselves as far as possible away from my fourteen year old self. Did I really disturb them that much? Good God, I thought somewhat amused at the immaturity of my peers am I really that horrid? Then some of the girls approached the teacher on lunch duty and asked them to make me move. The teacher looked rather puzzled and said he couldn’t I wasn’t doing anything wrong. I developed my love for social experiments that day. After an awesome summer of summer school and mucho money made in a homework racket I was in high school.
Ahhh Wilmington High where to start. Well first off if I fell off the majority of my peers radars. I had been placed in SPED because of my behavior. I was blessed with a teacher who realized I wasn’t A.) Dumb as a brick or B.) A total slacker. I was just lost and I found my academic niche and had a small but satisfying social group for the most part we were under the radar like a stealth fighter of short bus riders. There were classes that I had to take out of the safety of my bat cave where the occasional person would bring up he horrible things said to me over the years. But most of the time if they were okay to me I was okay with them. Twelfth grade made me notice homophobes, not because I came out then. There were as far as I know no truly open gay kids at my school and I hadn’t quite figured out that I was ;so there was nothing to tell. But apparently being competitive in gym makes you a lesbian. Ummm okay, there are like how many girls in school on the field hockey and softball teams and they decide I fit a weird stereotype I think they may have made up? Okay now a normal size class I could have disappeared but alas some how there were like ten kids in the class four girls. Crap. I made it through those two awkward semesters okay and proved so good in flying under the radar those four years they neglected to put in a picture or heck even a mention of me in the yearbook. Either that or I was a hell of a lot disliked.
I want to know where were the talks of bullying then? It happened, we had basic social media, children were killing themselves. My freshman art class two seniors talked of a girl who had just killed herself they were expressing their happiness in this. Where was the assembly the counselors then? These children, because regardless of their disturbing mind they were just that. Were proud they had driven this girl to death. The kids in this town knew no tolerating of others who did not confirm to there Aeropostale ideals. They had so little knowledge of other races, sexual identities, cultures that they I hope, I pray knew no better than to ostracize us.
Parents you are not benefiting you child by by not discussing topics that make you uncomfortable. You are making them bigoted, cruel humans. You do not have to go into detail about “alternative” relationships. Simply say well Bobby has two Daddies cause his Daddies love each other like mom and dad do. Think a bit if you even just shush them you imply there is something to pick on Bobby about. Yes I agree parents can dislike or disapprove of this life-style no prob. But remember it could just as easily be your child who becomes gay or many other things maybe they will have bi-racial kids. Do you really want them to feel that hate you nurse aimed at them albeit indirectly? Or to taunt a classmate to suicide. Or kill themselves because your “subtle” prejudices make them ashamed. I didn’t think so.
“Sticks and stones may break my bones but words have scarred my spirit”
Many, many years ago like sixth grade when all my classmates were going crazy over Johnathon Taylor Thomas and Devon Sawa I was a little confused over the appeal. “Oh well” I figured they have pretty hair and proceeded to paste tiger beat poster all over my room. It took another ten years or so before I could admit that I just don’t like guys. Nope not at all. I tried I really did I dated them and everything!
This made me horribly disappointed in myself I has failed at a basic biological function, what the hell was wrong with me! My family will be horrified I thought. Well thank God it appears that A.) the majority is okay with it and B.) the others just stick their fingers in their ears and cover their eyes and not so kindly say nothing. You think this would make me happy but not so much. I want to be able to have my relationships openly and not be the Aunt that shares an apartment with my “friend”. I want to have my Dad who is the best Dad ever in so many aspects walk me down the aisle at my wedding cause what the hell is the point of getting married if you can’t be “given” away.
Before we even hit marriage you have to date ideally you bring these people to family functions and they are introduced and welcomed as “Sarah’s boyfriend Joey”. It would be a cold day in hell before my ex would have been introduced as “Kristen’s girlfriend Jen” And last but not least children. I want them. I want to have a family. It is so much simpler to do this the hetero way.
I realize almost everyone faces some adversity in life but some one sprung a pretty fair amount on me. This one simple thing ,liking dudes would make my life much simpler but alas I like lasses. We may never be accepted fully into my family and society but should God bless with with the good fortune to find my soul mate I will fully accept them into my heart.
As our country deals with the horrible tragedy in Connecticut many people are trying to find something to blame. The most frequently blamed things when violence is shed on such a drastic level are religion (or lack thereof), guns and media. All of which provoke strong feelings in Americans and rightfully so. Our country was formed on religious freedom, freedom to bear arms and as far as I can find the U.S. is the only place were we are guaranteed the pursuit of happiness.
My thought on the subject is much simpler these people exist regardless of religion, guns or media. Our country for the most part believes in a higher power approximately 5% admit to being firm atheist. Belief in a God does not mean people are not going to harm each other; if anything some of the worst atrocities to have occurred on this planet have been committed in the name of God. There are no major religions that haven’t participated in violence to some degree the crusades, misguided jihads (the actual meaning of the word jihad is quite misunderstood in the western world) and seizing the land of others to repopulate an area. A simple lack of religiousness such as not going to church or temple does not imply that a person has no morals or no spiritual life, many people just do not find fulfillment in the rigidity of established religion. As a child I attended Sunday school which is protestant religious education. My parents although not church going folks had us attend most of my siblings ended their Sunday school days in their teen years. I continued to attend church into my twenties volunteering with the youth group. Does this make my brothers or parents less spiritual than I? Will their morals wear out before mine. Nope. I have friends who never stepped foot in a church and have better morals than some priests,reverends or Imams.
Now on to gun control a favorite for debate all around; they need to add it into the things to avoid at dinner parties. In our country we have the freedom to bear arms. We can own weapons within reason. Back before our government could sustain its own army it had a militia in which citizen soldiers had to supply their own gun. Nowadays we are blessed to have a full range of armed service to protect our country. But they cannot possibly patrol our streets keeping us all safe nor would we want a police state. People that own guns are just as violent as people that don’t;the main difference is if you come at someone with a knife and the person carries a gun, well it’s not going to end well for you. Used properly to attain food or protect self and property guns are an asset to a society. The recent mall shooter rethought his plans when he encountered a legally armed shopper. An armed guard makes a bank robber think twice.
As for media? Well I’m on the fence as to where that falls in the whole debate. Halo a very popular first person shooter has sold over 50 Million copies there is nowhere near 50 million mass murderers in known history. A lot of these first person shooters portray wars fictional and realistic. Many people born after 1980 or so have never truly experienced war as our parents and grandparents have. For the most part we have gone through our lives without fearing the enemy taking our lives as we go about life or living within the confines of food and fuel rationing. This has made many people think war is a game because to many it is. Even while we are at war the majority do not feel it except in the gas tanks. As long as man have lived children have played war games with rocks, bow and arrow and toy guns, As the saying goes boys will be boys. This is biology training us for reality same as little girls playing house. And yes there will always be the little girls that play war and the little boys that play house :). So do I think these promote violence? Well not really, in those games we shoot adult “enemies” this in no ways translates into shooting innocent people toy soldiers were just an earlier much less gory version of the same game.
The sad reality of humanity is we are humans. We will always have the Ted Bundys, Hitlers, Jack the Rippers and the Timothy McVeighs. This scourge will always exist as long as the rest of use do good and evil are intrinsic of human beings. If you want to go religious remember that tree in the garden of Eden? Yup we ate from it and became banished from Eden. We will always have people that kill with guns, planes and fertilizer bombs. As we progress into the future we build newer and deadlier weapons and I don’t mean guns and bombs there are things more terrible that God made and we mess with that people will use to kill.
The most important things to remember? We all have limited time on this earth so love while you can as much as you can. Teach the next generations the lessons that the last learned so they are less likely to repeat the mistakes. And remember there are 7 BILLION people on our beautiful planet don’t let the ones with the rotten hearts and minds destroy your faith in humanity. Go forward in life and be kind, be what you want to see in other people. The parts DO NOT represent the whole.
So today has been a long day. I didn’t fall asleep til 4 a.m. that ungodly hour that I tend to forget exist. Upon awakening this morning (barely) I was promptly bored out of my skull. One of my favorite bored activities is to think about the future and topic today was get ready…babies. Yes that’s right people I do plan on reproducing scary thought isn’t it. Likely within the next 5-6 years because, well I don’t want to hit my reproductive “good by” date. So as I don’t currently have a spouse or anyone on the horizon it looks like I will be going it alone. We all know what this means I have to find a gasp donor. Now I have considered using someone I know but, well as my genes are not sparkly clear in some areas I would like to avoid anyone with similar issues, no poor kid needs a double whammy crazy gene. That left using a sperm bank or donor site so I visited a few of both.
Now first off I would rather my future child have access to their father either when they are ready or at 18 because we should all be able to know where we come from right? I began checking out the free donor sites but honestly most of the men struck me as creepy, and no matter what they claimed to do for an occupation their bad spelling gave a feeling of a lack of intelligence or a severe lack of fine motor skills. After being severely skeeved out I googled “how much does sperm cost” kind of feeling like I would be hiring an invisible gigolo.
Well I was happily surprised it seems to run between $300 and $800. Not to bad, so I did some browsing on different sites and was pleased to see there was a wide range of umm inventory. Though in this area of the country I would have to pay a bit more the facilities seem very well established. When trying to “price” my future children I noticed up in one corner an add to cart button. I felt like I was picking up a baby at Sears. It was quite a strange feeling, maybe they should have used carriage instead of cart.
So after thinking it through I decided purchasing would be best. There is more guarantee of safety and more legal frame work. I also think my family would find it slightly more respectable than hooking up with a guy I don’t know. Slightly.
Okay so a friend of mine said I should blog and you know what I think I will! I have been known to have a rampant case of verbal diarrhea for those of you who are unfamiliar with the term it basically just means if it pops in my head it shoots out my mouth. As a 29 year old you would think I would have this under control but nope as my Mom once told me”you started talking when you were 3 and haven’t shut up since!”. My 4 brothers can attest to this.
As an attempt to get this continuous flow of words out of my head I send it out to all of you in the blogosphere. My latest flow of words has currently left my head as is usually the case when trying to harness my thoughts so I shall blather on randomly until a train of thought arrives at the station. I have been reading others peoples blogs of late trying to a get a feel for the genre.
So then just had an idea apparently Starbucks will now serve wine after P.M. although unfortunately not in my area. Well I am not particularly a wine person but this sounds quite interesting. It opens up a few questions such as well are they prepared for the lushes who no longer have to go to a bar but can now hang there? Personally I would find it highly amusing to sip my coffee and see how many glasses a friend could purchase before they refuse to serve them. Do they provide the baristas with training to tell when a customer is getting snockered? Do they get a bonus for cleaning up vomit filled sinks and toilets? Then how do you tip? Do you tip for a coffee server or a bartender because you all know we tip bar tenders more. Will the wine be of a high quality or are there going to be box wine (ewwww)? Also how does the whole checking I.D.s thing work out they hae a lot of high school and college age employees it seems like an easy environment to slip your pals some wine.
I’m going to patiently wait for the days when we figure out that Europe has the drinking thing down pat. If you raise your kids to know what something is, what it does and how to respect it helps. How many European colleges do you see in girls gone wild? My point exactly. Then Americas children could use their first few years of college for learning instead of parental funded alcohol testing. So much would be saved by parents and the government. Less student arrest less security needed by bars and restaurants less wasted Pell grants oh the benefits. For a young country we don’t learn very fast maybe it was the effects of prohibition we are still experimenting with alcohol like the college kids lol. Well I am slightly less full of crap so have a good day all.