Some loose ends as we jump into a new week…and a few puddles!

Maybe it’s because we’re moving so quickly towards the end of the year, but I feel like I have too many things on my mind to focus. Waiting for inspiration to hit and then write a cohesive, well-composed post and I might be sitting here for a while. I’ll just jump in!

When I last left you I was planning to share my little collection of World War I “mystery objects,” but it feels out-of-place for the week before Christmas–not a very cheery subject. My personal items are actually quite “upbeat” considering subject matter, but I’ll get back to them in the new year. Still no guesses on what they might be?

I do want to thank each one of you who took the time to respond to my last post with very personal thoughts about the way the First World War is remembered outside of the United States, and some thoughts on why. I learned a lot from your comments and intend to follow-up on your suggested reading.

Tilly asked me if I was aware of the Christmas truce of 1914. I probably would not have known except that I did see the movie, War Horse.

One hundred years ago German and British soldiers left their trenches along the Western Front and shared Christmas Day without guns, instead, opting for football. UEFA–the official website for European football–created a video marking the centenary of the Christmas truce.

I’m only marginally familiar with ANY football players, American or European, but those of you who know English football, you may enjoy Wayne Rooney, Sir Bobby Charlton, Philipp Lahm and Gareth Bale reading soldiers’ letters from this unique moment in history. I think it’s worth a few moments of reflection.

I also wanted to thank those of you who contacted me to ask about the recent California storms. So you heard about the Pineapple Express? This storm dumped up to 5 inches of rain on Southern California and although it did bring havoc and chaos in some areas, we didn’t experience anything out of the ordinary and we just enjoyed!

Our local weatherman, Dallas Raines, shared this video on his Facebook page–just for fun! Here’s your opportunity to visit the Southland in under one minute!

Two more storms are lining up and set to bring more rain and mountain snow. For those living in mudslide areas this is not good news, but these next storms don’t appear to be as strong, yet may stay with us for most of the week. I can’t remember when I’ve heard that kind of forecast!

After more than three years without any significant rainfall, this is a great start!


If this keeps up I may actually have a reason to buy some rain boots! Imagine!















52 thoughts on “Some loose ends as we jump into a new week…and a few puddles!

    1. I actually had to think about which shoes to wear to work today, Ann! I don’t even have “winter” shoes! LOL! I have one wardrobe that covers all four seasons. If this keeps up, though, I will have an excuse to shop! That could be fun. LOL!

  1. The 1914 Christmas Truce football game – an epic historical moment. If the war was left to those soldiers to determine, it might have been over much sooner. Some of the players journals share amazing recollections. Great topic to reflect upon, come rain or shine. 🙂

    1. You’re so right, Eric! I thought similarly when I really contemplated the way the “boys”–and of course, that’s all they were, just laid down their arms and picked up a game! It makes their sacrifice all the more painful, doesn’t it? I’ve been getting comments from several of my British friends sharing stories they grew up with when grandfathers and great-uncles fought in this war and the memories of those losses are still felt in those families 100 years later! It just highlights the futility of war, but I won’t preach to the choir. LOL! I always appreciate your perspective, Eric. Thank you for visiting!

  2. The clouds in those time lapse films are amazing! You don’t have rain boots? I live in my wellies half of the year! LOL! Just another note on the WW1 celebrations: a famous supermarket chain in the UK made a Christmas advertisement film using the Christmas truce as subject matter. I’m not sure if I agree with such advertising, but here’s the video – very moving:
    Have a good week and enjoy the rain! 😉

    1. Thank you for this, Cathy! I know what you mean about using something so tender as a means of advertising, but it is fascinating nonetheless. And yes, it’s raining again today…lightly, but it’s still rain! 🙂 ox

    1. I know what you mean about news reports, Lori. My stepson lives in Hawaii and calls us all the time thinking a flood or fire is just up the street. I actually think that is one reason I began writing so much about the Los Angeles area. It is a huge metropolis and every ugly story makes it sound like everyone lives in the middle of utter chaos. LOL! We are really enjoying the rain and it is true there are some bad mudslides…but unfortunately this is a yearly occurrence. We have fires every year that create the hazard and then with the first rain, whoosh! Personally I wouldn’t live in the foothills, no matter how beautiful-but I have friends who do!

  3. Enjoy the puddles … and I hope you get some steady light rain instead of by the buckets … Then again, I realize that’s not the way it usually works out there. …. and yes .. that video was outstanding. Thanks!!!!

    1. Today is light sprinkles, Frank, and I realize that with the rain and lack of sun, I do calm down considerably! LOL! My personal energy isn’t as supercharged. I think that’s a positive. 🙂 I just noticed your email address, Frank. Is that new or did I just never notice before. Good one! You gave me a good chuckle!

    1. I wish I could really show you how much “happier” my succulents are! Everything is enjoying the benefits of a good drink, but the succulents are the most fascinating to me because they don’t show “wilt” or “burn” and just keep plugging along even without nourishment! But after this much rain the colors have started to deepen and although the changes are subtle, they are definitely observable. It makes me happy! And I AM breathing lighter and feeling recharged. 🙂

  4. We have been watching those news reports, Debra, hoping you and yours are alright, and feeling for those who were in the path of those horrendous mudslides. Enjoy the rain. I know you are. Puddles are for jumping in. 🙂

    What a well documented and touching video this is. It was, indeed, worth a few moments of reflection. There is a Hallmark movie you might be interested in. It is called Silent Night. While it isn’t about the 1914 Christmas truce, it is a take-off on it of sorts, set in a German cabin where a mother has taken her young son for safety. US soldiers, one seriously injured, then German soldiers stay in the cabin on Christmas eve during WWII.

    1. We have had quite a chuckle at ourselves, Penny, for as the weather has changed to wet we have also shifted many of our outdoor plans! We aren’t accustomed to needing to think much about the weather, even this time of year, so it’s a little foreign. We are definitely not complaining, but it is very funny. I have stayed home a lot more in the last two weeks as a result and that’s actually been kind of nice. Today it’s been more drizzly than really raining, but I think we’ll have some more tonight.

      You are the one, I’m certain, that pointed me to the movie about Rudyard Kipling’s son—I now forget the title, but that one movie, plus watching Downton Abbey were two “stories” that brought home to me how little I knew about WWI. I will look into “Silent Night” as well. By the time I’ve taken advantage of the wonderful suggestions made by those of you better read and informed than I, it seems I may be able to consider myself quite the expert-by American standards. LOL! I like to read topically, so I can see a new direction for 2015. 🙂 Thank you, my friend.

      1. Oh, it was My Son Jack, Debra. That movie and the poem by Kipling have really stuck to me, urging me on to learn more myself.

        I love your attitude and sense of adventure with the weather. Stay dry. 🙂 You are most welcome.

  5. I’m glad you’re enjoying some splish splashing through puddles! I love the story of the Football truce and have heard it before, but I can’t recall where. Maybe reading War Horse?

    1. There are some really interesting videos on the different BBC sites, and I’m having fun discovering them! I didn’t read War Horse, and just saw the movie. I think maybe now is a good time for me to pick up the book!

  6. Splish splash splosh, I’m back! It has taken most of the day to sort out my blog problem, but it is safe now to visit again.

    I do have very colourful wellington boots, if you want to borrow them.

    1. I am so glad I found that particular video, Perpetua. It’s wonderful how many different entries I’ve been able to access through the BBC or some of the British publications. I am really enjoying some “independent study!” 🙂

  7. I’ve seen this and it’s incredibly moving and I love how it was inspired by real events. How sad for both sides, during that Christmas. We’ve had a very dark day here in Sydney with the events that took place in the heart of our city. Two beautiful people lost their lives and both were true heroes for risking their lives to save others xx

    1. I’m glad you enjoyed the video, Charlie. It moves me, too. And I was thinking of you all day yesterday as we started hearing about the incredibly tragic and frightening events in Sydney. I couldn’t help but think of you and wonder how you were doing. It seems that daily we hear something equally disturbing, but when it’s in our own home it shakes us so badly. Thanks to a 24-hour news cycle I was able to follow along quite closely from my work terminal…something I probably wouldn’t have done if I hadn’t been thinking of you. It is deeply sobering, and puts a sad tone to the holiday season. I send my love. ox D

  8. I have to say I am more interested in European (and English in particular) football than American football, so this was something I could indeed appreciate. Quite amazing that the old enemies could come to a Christmas truce during WWI.

  9. Dear Debra, it must be hard for many of the people in the downpour to rejoice in that the national news shows horrendous mudslides and damage. I’m hoping though that good will come out of all of this and that at least some of the drought will be reduced. Here our weather has been mostly chilly with no snow and a little rain. At this time of year I find myself truly missing Minnesota, where I lived for 38 year years. I love snow and in my final years there I was blessed with thoughtful and lovely neighbors who did the snowblowing for me. Advent is passing and I’m hoping that the expectation of this season is filling your heart with appreciation for the joys and the good ness of your life. Peace.

  10. Oh, I’m so delighted to hear your gardens are all getting a long awaited and much needed drink! Enjoy the puddle-jumping! :)) Wishing you and all of your loved ones a very happy and fun holiday season! ~ Jeannie!

  11. How nice it must be to be able to talk about actual rain and not hope for some. Those mudslides, though, are a horror. Glad that the casualties have been so few. Homes can be rebuilt but lives lost are gone forever. My New Year Wish for your state is that the rains lessen in ferocity but continue, softly, for some time, giving the parched earth a chance to soak up as much of the moisture as it can, without runoffs, floods, and more slides. I’d like to win the lottery, too. I might as well wish for everything. 🙂

    1. It’s true that the mudslides are very scary, but they are as regular in California as snow is in your state. It just seems that there is nowhere on earth that doesn’t have frequent reminders that nature has the upper hand. I do thank you for the wish that the new year brings in more rain and a lessening of drought conditions. It is so wonderful to have had the recent rain and it makes me very hopeful that maybe we are at least on the right track. Thank you, John. 🙂

  12. The 1914 truce touches me deeply. I’m afraid though, to read about the next day. When they had to pick up their guns. And return. And know they were fighting the men they had just spent Christmas Peace with.

    And I’m glad your environment is getting some much needed rain. I’m sure the plant world is grateful. (I hope the damage is minimal.)

  13. I hope you enjoy the rain, grab some massive wellington boots and splash your way right to the nearest coffee shop 😀
    I have a pair calling your name 😉
    Happy Holidays dear friend!

    Choc Chip Uru

  14. Was a big storm, but not too big or maybe not too long to be very alarmed really. I did see a car covered by a tree. Yikes! Truce, what a neat idea. Why can’t be think of something friendly to settle issues. Eh.

  15. I’d heard you got much needed rain, I’m so very happy for you but it was unfortunate to arrive in such a manner! I’m wondering what mystery objects you’ve got stored away? I have my grandpa’s flying goggles. He fought in World War I and I’m afraid I’m terribly uneducated about it. I hope to get round to everyone over the next few days, I’m so glad I’m here! Wishing you and your loved ones an absolutely wonderful and peaceful Christmas celebration and a restful holiday!!

I always enjoy hearing from you!

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