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Explored Front Page (#3)!!! :D:D Wow, two in a day! This seems to be a nice start to a new week :)

 

Day 103

 

Yep, this is how I decorate trees.

 

So here's my early Christmas greeting : ) Taken at my grandparents house :D

Anyways, three more days of exams, and I'm oddly happy, because... well you'll see tomorrow.

 

Strobist Info: Canon 430EX II camera right shot through umbrella | 28mm @ 1/4 Power w/ Full CTO

The first soldiers to arrive at the fort were members of the 18th Infantry from Fort Hays and Leavenworth, Kan., who immediately set up a temporary barracks and guardhouse while construction began on permanent facilities. The name of the fort, originally known as “the camp near the city of Denver,” became Fort Logan in August 1889. General John A. Logan had risen to the rank of Union Army general and commander of volunteer forces during the Civil War. As head of the post-war veteran’s organization the Grand Army of the Republic, he issued General Orders No. 11, establishing May 30 as “Decoration Day” to honor the Civil War dead. This later became a national holiday called Memorial Day.

 

Fort Logan is located in Denver County near the southwest boundary of the City of Denver. By the 1880s, with the removal of much of the Native American population to reservations, the federal government had begun to close many frontier forts. The rapid growth of the railroad had made it easier for the Army to quickly move troops to where they were needed. The frontier posts that had played such an important role in the development of the West became increasingly obsolete and expensive to maintain. Still, the citizenry of Denver, in relative isolation and apprehensive concerning increased immigration from the East and abroad, petitioned the Army to establish a post near the city. In 1886, Colorado Sen. Henry M. Teller introduced a bill in Congress authorizing construction of the post, and it was signed in February 1887. A little over three acres was set aside in 1889 for a post cemetery. The first recorded burial in the post cemetery was Mable Peterkin, daughter of Private Peterkin, who died on June 28, 1889.

 

I took this picture in 2004 with my first digital camera. Today, (Memorial Day) I just did some touch up to the picture, with Nik " bleach Bypass". My Grandparents are here.

 

another thing you will find in any latvian household is a wooden spoon. well, pretty much anything hand-carved from wood counts. candlesticks, spoons, figurines, dishes, bowls, large wall-hangings, lamp bases, any variety of spinning tops and string-pull children's toys... and if it's a latvian like me, you'll sometimes just find bits of wood lying about on display. obviously you boil any driftwood first to kill any bacteria.

 

and oh yes, i WOULD know that.

 

my grandparents used to have a huge wooden spoon as a wall decoration in their old house. once when i was little, i talked back or was crabby or something other typically 5-year-oldish and my grandfather threatened to give me a whacking with the spoon. as the spoon was gigantic and i did not place getting a spanking on the top of my list of fun things for a 5-year-old to do, i shut up immediately. he never would have given me a whack, but it's no joke that spoons used to come in handy for teaching kids a lesson. you see it in old literature or movie adaptations of plays. literary characters were always either being chased down by an adult with a spoon or being punished with whittling spoons all day.

 

i don't use this spoon for anything, but keep it with my pens or pencils just because.

now hit L or i'll whack you :3

 

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"Home for Christmas" photo series (December 2011)

 

This holiday season we've decided to decorate our Christmas tree with our favourite ornaments from our ever increasing collection. Every single ornament on the Tree tells of the Christmases past, our life-story full of precious memories and treasured heritage. This may come as a surprise to many of you: The First Noel celebration came for me in my mid 20-ies! Namely, four of my grandparents belonged to four different religions and my parents raised me with no religious experience whatsoever. So, I had to find my own way in the maze of all of those religions and discover by myself, as an adult, joys of the first Noël, Christmas, Hanukkah. Many years have passed since those days and I was careful to avoid my parents' mistake. This is how our son ended up drawing for me and my wife a Holiday Card with the Star of David on top of Christmas Tree! I am providing today two sets of links: I. The First Noël song in various renditions by past American Idol stars; and II. Noël carols sung in French ~ Joyeux Noël!~ Merry Christmas! ~

................................................................ Chante, C'est Noël: Sing along, sing a song of Christmas!

................................................................ Chante, C'est Noël: ‘Tis that wonderful time of year!

................................................................ Danse, C'est Noël: Sing and dance for the joy of Christmas!

................................................................ Danse, C'est Noël: ‘Tis that wonderous time of year!

................................................................ Come raise in singing, sing out loud for all to hear!

................................................................ C'est Noël, C'est Noël: ‘Tis that wonderful time of year!

................................................................ Children’s voices are all bringing hope and joy!

................................................................ And Merry Christmas: C'est Noël, Chante, C'est Noël!

The First Noel ~ Clay Aiken

The First Noel ~ LaKisha Jones

The First Noel ~ David Archuleta

The First Noel ~ Carrie Underwood

The First Noel ~ Scotty McCreery [CMA live, 2011]

Noel/Christmas Medley ~ AMERICAN IDOL Christmas Special 2003

Noel/Christmas Medley ~ Jennifer Hudson + GOSPEL CHOIR [Live]

 

Noël c'est l'amour ~ LE GRUPPE VOCAL "PRIVILEGE"

C'est Noël, joie sur la Terre ~ CHORALE d'ENFANTS

Pot-pourri de chansons de Noël ~ Marie Myriam

Le Noël de la rue ~ Chantal Câlin [live]

LePetit papa Noël ~ Nana Mouskouri

Cantinque de Noël ~ Andrea Bocelli

Chante, c'est Noël ~ Celine Dion

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I met him just after I had “sized up” a potential photo location at Alexander the Great Parkette in my neighborhood: Toronto’s Greektown (en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Greektown,_Toronto). Suddenly realizing that his friendly face might make for a pleasant 100 Strangers encounter and that his black jacket and hat would work well with the background, I turned on my heel and approached him and his wife from behind to make my request. The response was favorable so I completed my explanation of the project which was made easier by his familiarity with Flickr. Meet Colin who was walking the Danforth on this chilly, wet, overcast day in early January.

 

I explained my idea to make use of the small white Christmas lights decorating a tree in the parkette and Colin was happy to oblige. I got out my reflector to bounce some light into his eyes and we were off to the races while his wife Deborah stood by watching with a look of pride and affection on her face at this impromptu photo shoot. I made about three exposures and the sun popped out unexpectedly so we chatted instead of photographing.

 

Colin grew up in Orangeville, a small city northwest of Toronto but has lived most of his adult life in Toronto. He is 61 and works as a technical editor, working on a variety of topics but specializing in editing academic articles for technical journals. When I asked if that was a hard way to make a living and if he had to scramble to find a series of projects and contracts he said he can’t complain. He has some long-term contracts which provide stability and give him the freedom to pursue additional jobs of shorter duration. When I asked if he was facing any particular challenges in life right now he said “I’m really in a very comfortable spot in life and am grateful for that.”

 

I asked Deborah what she would like to say about her husband and she didn’t have to think long. She said he’s very good at what he does and it might be of interest that he comes from a long line of writers in his family and that their sons are both in creative fields. They are enjoying the excitement of being grandparents and both had beaming smiles in telling me. When I asked Colin if he had a message to share with the project he said "Be happy." A simple message and I have a feeling that is says something about Colin and his wife. In the ten minutes we spent together they struck me as comfortable, friendly, open, and positive. It was a pleasure meeting them.

 

Both Colin and Deborah were interested in the project and particularly in the challenge of walking up to complete strangers and asking permission to take their photograph. I said it was quite daunting when I started (just a few blocks up the street from where we were standing) but I’ve been amazed by how many people are open to the experience. I also said that meeting such a wide variety of interesting people is a great reward in itself.

 

All of a sudden I realized the sun had ducked back behind the clouds so I quickly picked up my camera again and tookd a couple more photos for good measure. Colin and Deborah were very obliging and said they were just out for a nice long walk and didn't mind spending another few minutes. It is really fun doing this project when you have subjects who understand the concept and enjoy being a part of it.

 

My only regret about this encounter is that I wasn’t flexible enough to photograph the two of them together. They made a very attractive couple and both participated in the conversation and photo shoot. I need to learn to be more open to deviating from plan and taking advantage of opportunities. It’s not that I haven’t done that, but I would like to do it more.

 

I had some trouble deciding which version to post to the project. I thought Colin's hat and jacket might make this a fairly monochrome photo from the outset, contrasting against the lights (which were not illuminated). Then when I saw the color version I liked the color of Colin's skin and the splash of red decorations to the right. Coin-flipping time. After changing my mind back and forth, I've settled on the original concept: black and white. Please feel free to weight in with your own opinion on this.

 

Thank you Colin and Deborah for taking the time to meet and for participating in 100 Strangers. You are #688 in Round 7 of my project.

 

Find out more about the project and see pictures taken by the other photographers in our group at the 100

Strangers Flickr Group page.

 

Saint Magnus, Earl Magnus Erlendsson of Orkney, sometimes known as Magnus the Martyr, was Earl of Orkney from 1106[1] to about 1115. His story is told in two sagas, Magnus' saga (the shorter and longer one) and one legend, Legenda de sancto Magno.

 

Magnus's grandparents, Earl Thorfinn and his wife Ingibiorg Finnsdottir, had two sons, Erlend and Paul, who were twins. Through Ingibiorg's father Finn Arnesson and his wife, the family was related to the Norwegian Kings Olav II and Harald II.

 

Born in 1075, Magnus was the son of Erlend Thorfinnsson, Earl of Orkney, and he first served Magnus III of Norway as skutilsvein (approx. Chamberlain), who took possession of the islands in 1098, deposing Erlend and his brother, Paul. Paul's son, Haakon Paulsson, then became regent on behalf of the Norwegian prince, Sigurd, who made Haakon earl in 1105.

 

According to the Orkneyinga Saga, Magnus had a reputation for piety and gentleness, and was rejected by the Norwegians, refusing to fight in a Viking raid in Anglesey, Wales, because of his religious convictions, instead staying on board his ships during the Battle of Anglesey Sound, singing psalms. He was obliged to take refuge in Scotland, but returned to Orkney in 1105 and disputed the succession with his cousin Haakon.

 

Having failed to reach an agreement, he sought help from King Eystein I of Norway, who granted him the earldom of Orkney and he ruled jointly and amicably with Haakon until 1114.

 

Their followers fell out, and the two sides met at the Thing (assembly) on the Orkney mainland, ready to do battle. Peace was negotiated and the Earls arranged to meet each other on the island of Egilsay, each bringing only two ships. Magnus arrived with his two ships, but then Haakon treacherously turned up with eight ships.

 

Magnus took refuge in the island's church overnight, but the following day he was captured and offered to go into exile or prison, but an assembly of chieftains insisted that one earl must die. Haakon's standard bearer, Ofeigr, refused to execute Magnus, and an angry Haakon made his cook Lifolf kill Magnus by striking him on the head with an axe. It was said that Magnus first prayed for the souls of his executioners.

 

According to the sagas, the martyrdom took place after Easter, on April 16 . The year is often given as 1115, but this is impossible: 16 April fell before Easter that year.

 

Magnus was first buried on the spot where he died. According to his legend, the rocky area around his grave miraculously became a green field. Later Thora, Magnus' mother asked Haakon allow her to bury him in a Church. Haakon gave his permission and Magnus was then buried at Christchurch at Birsay.

 

There were numerous reports of miraculous happenings and healings. William the Old, Bishop of Orkney, warned that it was "heresy to go about with such tales" and was then struck blind at his church but subsequently had his sight restored after praying at the grave of Magnus, not long after visiting Norway (and perhaps meeting Earl Rognvald Kolsson).

 

Magnus's nephew, Rognvald Kali Kolsson, laid claim to the Earldom of Orkney, and was advised by his father Kol to promise the islanders to "build a stone minster at Kirkwall" in memory of his uncle the Holy Earl, and this became St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall. When the cathedral begun in 1137 was ready for consecration the relics of St Magnus were transferred, and in 1917 a hidden cavity was found in a column, containing a box with bones including a damaged skull. These are held without (much) doubt to be the relics of St Magnus.

 

In the Faroes, the St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkjubøur was built around 1300 A.D., at the time of Bishop Erlendur. It is quite sure that the church was used for services (though it never was finished, or has been destroyed later), for estimated relics of Saint Magnus were found here in 1905. Kirkjubøur is one of the most important Faroese historical sites and expected to become a World Heritage Site. In total there are 21 churches in Europe dedicated to St Magnus.

 

There are two Icelandic sagas of St Magnus's life, Magnus' saga the shorter and longer as well as the account in the Orkneyinga Saga. In addition to this there are several devotional works in Gaelic and Latin about St Magnus, including a legend, Legenda de sancto Magno. Saint Magnus is the subject of the novel Magnus by Orcadian author George Mackay Brown, which was published in 1973, and St Magnus, Earl of Orkney by John Mooney. In 1977 Peter Maxwell Davies wrote a one-act opera, The Martyrdom of St Magnus, based on Mackay Brown's novel.

 

en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Magnus_Erlendsson,_Earl_of_Orkney

 

The first church lost to the Great Fire was St. Margaret New Fish Street; it was not rebuilt, the parish being united with St. Magnus and the site given to The Monument, which stands there yet, 202 feet tall and 202 feet to the east of the spot where the fire began.

 

The church is first mentioned in the last decade of the 12th century and must have been well known to the many pilgrims and others who crossed over the nearby London Bridge. A fish market was set up in the street in the same century while a City Ordinance of the 14th century required lampreys from France to he sold 'from under the walls of the church'. A further Ordinance of 1379 mentions the conduit, 'hard by the church', as one of the two places where fresh fish could be sold. In the Guildhall Library can be seen the Book of St. Margaret, New Fish Street in which are listed an extraordinary collection of saintly relics. Among the relics claimed were portions of the crib of Christ at Bethlehem, Moses's rod with which he divided the Red Sea, and the 'usual' pieces of clothing for early saints of the church.

 

During the Middle Ages the parish had two rectors of note. In 1461 John Alcock was appointed rector. He stayed until 1471 when he was made Bishop of Rochester, to be followed by Worcester, and in 1486 he succeeded John Morton at Ely when he became the Archbishop of Canterbury. Alcock was twice Chancellor of England, Master of the Rolls, President of Wales and the founder of Jesus College Cambridge. The other was Geoffrey Wren 1512-1527 when during his stay at St. Margaret's he became a Canon of Windsor. He lies buried under the sixth arch of the North aisle of the Royal Chapel of St. George at Windsor.

 

John Stow in his 'survay' describes the church as being 'a proper church, but monuments hath it none'. From that we assume that he meant it was a building of some size in good repair. In a survey, 'Valor Ecclesiasticus' during the reign of Henry VIII the rectory was valued at £31 11s. 8d. In 1636 the annual income was shown as £150 which is, presumably, the stipend of Thomas Brooks, a Puritan preacher here during the commonwealth. He was ejected at the time of the Restoration of the Monarch in 1660 when Robert Porey, the legal tenant of the rectory became a prebendary and canon residentary of St. Paul's. At which time George Smalwood became rector of St. Margaret's. The church was the first to perish in the Great Fire of 1666 and was not rebuilt. The monument stands on the site today and a City plaque commemorates the church on a nearby office building.

 

www.stmagnusmartyr.org.uk/history/st-margaret-new-fish-st

 

St Magnus the Martyr, London Bridge is a Church of England church and parish within the City of London. The church, which is located in Lower Thames Street near The Monument to the Great Fire of London,[1] is part of the Diocese of London and under the pastoral care of the Bishop of London and the Bishop of Fulham.[2] It is a Grade I listed building.[3] The rector uses the title "Cardinal Rector". [4]

St Magnus lies on the original alignment of London Bridge between the City and Southwark. The ancient parish was united with that of St Margaret, New Fish Street, in 1670 and with that of St Michael, Crooked Lane, in 1831.[5] The three united parishes retained separate vestries and churchwardens.[6] Parish clerks continue to be appointed for each of the three parishes.[7]

St Magnus is the guild church of the Worshipful Company of Fishmongers and the Worshipful Company of Plumbers, and the ward church of the Ward of Bridge and Bridge Without. It is also twinned with the Church of the Resurrection in New York City.[8]

Its prominent location and beauty has prompted many mentions in literature.[9] In Oliver Twist Charles Dickens notes how, as Nancy heads for her secret meeting with Mr. Brownlow and Rose Maylie on London Bridge, "the tower of old Saint Saviour's Church, and the spire of Saint Magnus, so long the giant-warders of the ancient bridge, were visible in the gloom". The church's spiritual and architectural importance is celebrated in the poem The Waste Land by T. S. Eliot, who adds in a footnote that "the interior of St. Magnus Martyr is to my mind one of the finest among Wren's interiors".[10] One biographer of Eliot notes that at first he enjoyed St Magnus aesthetically for its "splendour"; later he appreciated its "utility" when he came there as a sinner.

 

The church is dedicated to St Magnus the Martyr, earl of Orkney, who died on 16 April in or around 1116 (the precise year is unknown).[12] He was executed on the island of Egilsay having been captured during a power struggle with his cousin, a political rival.[13] Magnus had a reputation for piety and gentleness and was canonised in 1135. St. Ronald, the son of Magnus's sister Gunhild Erlendsdotter, became Earl of Orkney in 1136 and in 1137 initiated the construction of St. Magnus Cathedral in Kirkwall.[14] The story of St. Magnus has been retold in the 20th century in the chamber opera The Martyrdom of St Magnus (1976)[15] by Sir Peter Maxwell Davies, based on George Mackay Brown's novel Magnus (1973).

 

he identity of the St Magnus referred to in the church's dedication was only confirmed by the Bishop of London in 1926.[16] Following this decision a patronal festival service was held on 16 April 1926.[17] In the 13th century the patronage was attributed to one of the several saints by the name of Magnus who share a feast day on 19 August, probably St Magnus of Anagni (bishop and martyr, who was slain in the persecution of the Emperor Decius in the middle of the 3rd century).[18] However, by the early 18th century it was suggested that the church was either "dedicated to the memory of St Magnus or Magnes, who suffer'd under the Emperor Aurelian in 276 [see St Mammes of Caesarea, feast day 17 August], or else to a person of that name, who was the famous Apostle or Bishop of the Orcades."[19] For the next century historians followed the suggestion that the church was dedicated to the Roman saint of Cæsarea.[20] The famous Danish archaeologist Professor Jens Jacob Asmussen Worsaae (1821–85) promoted the attribution to St Magnus of Orkney during his visit to the British Isles in 1846-7, when he was formulating the concept of the 'Viking Age',[21] and a history of London written in 1901 concluded that "the Danes, on their second invasion ... added at least two churches with Danish names, Olaf and Magnus".[22] A guide to the City Churches published in 1917 reverted to the view that St Magnus was dedicated to a martyr of the third century,[23] but the discovery of St Magnus of Orkney's relics in 1919 renewed interest in a Scandinavian patron and this connection was encouraged by the Rector who arrived in 1921

 

A metropolitan bishop of London attended the Council of Arles in 314, which indicates that there must have been a Christian community in Londinium by this date, and it has been suggested that a large aisled building excavated in 1993 near Tower Hill can be compared with the 4th-century Cathedral of St Tecla in Milan.[25] However, there is no archaeological evidence to suggest that any of the mediaeval churches in the City of London had a Roman foundation.[26] A grant from William I in 1067 to Westminster Abbey, which refers to the stone church of St Magnus near the bridge ("lapidee eccle sci magni prope pontem"), is generally accepted to be 12th century forgery,[27] and it is possible that a charter of confirmation in 1108-16 might also be a later fabrication.[28] Nonetheless, these manuscripts may preserve valid evidence of a date of foundation in the 11th century.

 

Archaeological evidence suggests that the area of the bridgehead was not occupied from the early 5th century until the early 10th century. Environmental evidence indicates that the area was waste ground during this period, colonised by elder and nettles. Following Alfred's decision to reoccupy the walled area of London in 886, new harbours were established at Queenhithe and Billingsgate. A bridge was in place by the early 11th century, a factor which would have encouraged the occupation of the bridgehead by craftsmen and traders.[30] A lane connecting Botolph's Wharf and Billingsgate to the rebuilt bridge may have developed by the mid-11th century. The waterfront at this time was a hive of activity, with the construction of embankments sloping down from the riverside wall to the river. Thames Street appeared in the second half of the 11th century immediately behind (north of) the old Roman riverside wall and in 1931 a piling from this was discovered during the excavation of the foundations of a nearby building. It now stands at the base of the church tower.[31] St Magnus was built to the south of Thames Street to serve the growing population of the bridgehead area[32] and was certainly in existence by 1128-33.[33]

The small ancient parish[34] extended about 110 yards along the waterfront either side of the old bridge, from 'Stepheneslane' (later Churchehawlane or Church Yard Alley) and 'Oystergate' (later called Water Lane or Gully Hole) on the West side to 'Retheresgate' (a southern extension of Pudding Lane) on the East side, and was centred on the crossroads formed by Fish Street Hill (originally Bridge Street, then New Fish Street) and Thames Street.[35] The mediaeval parish also included Drinkwater's Wharf (named after the owner, Thomas Drinkwater), which was located immediately West of the bridge, and Fish Wharf, which was to the South of the church. The latter was of considerable importance as the fishmongers had their shops on the wharf. The tenement was devised by Andrew Hunte to the Rector and Churchwardens in 1446.[36] The ancient parish was situated in the South East part of Bridge Ward, which had evolved in the 11th century between the embankments to either side of the bridge.[37]

In 1182 the Abbot of Westminster and the Prior of Bermondsey agreed that the advowson of St Magnus should be divided equally between them. Later in the 1180s, on their presentation, the Archdeacon of London inducted his nephew as parson.

 

Between the late Saxon period and 1209 there was a series of wooden bridges across the Thames, but in that year a stone bridge was completed.[39] The work was overseen by Peter de Colechurch, a priest and head of the Fraternity of the Brethren of London Bridge. The Church had from early times encouraged the building of bridges and this activity was so important it was perceived to be an act of piety - a commitment to God which should be supported by the giving of alms. London’s citizens made gifts of land and money "to God and the Bridge".[40] The Bridge House Estates became part of the City's jurisdiction in 1282.

 

Until 1831 the bridge was aligned with Fish Street Hill, so the main entrance into the City from the south passed the West door of St Magnus on the north bank of the river.[41] The bridge included a chapel dedicated to St Thomas Becket[42] for the use of pilgrims journeying to Canterbury Cathedral to visit his tomb.[43] The chapel and about two thirds of the bridge were in the parish of St Magnus. After some years of rivalry a dispute arose between the church and the chapel over the offerings given to the chapel by the pilgrims. The matter was resolved by the brethren of the chapel making an annual contribution to St Magnus.[44] At the Reformation the chapel was turned into a house and later a warehouse, the latter being demolished in 1757-58.

The church grew in importance. On 21 November 1234 a grant of land was made to the parson of St Magnus for the enlargement of the church.[45] The London eyre of 1244 recorded that in 1238 "A thief named William of Ewelme of the county of Buckingham fled to the church of St. Magnus the Martyr, London, and there acknowledged the theft and abjured the realm. He had no chattels."[46] Another entry recorded that "The City answers saying that the church of ... St. Magnus the Martyr ... which [is] situated on the king's highway ... ought to belong to the king and be in his gift".[47] The church presumably jutted into the road running to the bridge, as it did in later times.[48] In 1276 it was recorded that "the church of St. Magnus the Martyr is worth £15 yearly and Master Geoffrey de la Wade now holds it by the grant of the prior of Bermundeseie and the abbot of Westminster to whom King Henry conferred the advowson by his charter.

 

In 1274 "came King Edward and his wife [Eleanor] from the Holy Land and were crowned at Westminster on the Sunday next after the Feast of the Assumption of Our Lady [15 August], being the Feast of Saint Magnus [19 August]; and the Conduit in Chepe ran all the day with red wine and white wine to drink, for all such as wished."[50] Stow records that "in the year 1293, for victory obtained by Edward I against the Scots, every citizen, according to their several trade, made their several show, but especially the fishmongers" whose solemn procession including a knight "representing St Magnus, because it was upon St Magnus' day".

An important religious guild, the Confraternity de Salve Regina, was in existence by 1343, having been founded by the "better sort of the Parish of St Magnus" to sing the anthem 'Salve Regina' every evening.[51] The Guild certificates of 1389 record that the Confraternity of Salve Regina and the guild of St Thomas the Martyr in the chapel on the bridge, whose members belonged to St Magnus parish, had determined to become one, to have the anthem of St Thomas after the Salve Regina and to devote their united resources to restoring and enlarging the church of St Magnus.[52] An Act of Parliament of 1437[53] provided that all incorporated fraternities and companies should register their charters and have their ordinances approved by the civic authorities.[54] Fear of enquiry into their privileges may have led established fraternities to seek a firm foundation for their rights. The letters patent of the fraternity of St Mary and St Thomas the Martyr of Salve Regina in St Magnus dated 26 May 1448 mention that the fraternity had petitioned for a charter on the grounds that the society was not duly founded.

 

In the mid-14th century the Pope was the Patron of the living and appointed five rectors to the benefice.[56]

Henry Yevele, the master mason whose work included the rebuilding of Westminster Hall and the naves of Westminster Abbey and Canterbury Cathedral, was a parishioner and rebuilt the chapel on London Bridge between 1384 and 1397. He served as a warden of London Bridge and was buried at St Magnus on his death in 1400. His monument was extant in John Stow's time, but was probably destroyed by the fire of 1666.[57]

Yevele, as the King’s Mason, was overseen by Geoffrey Chaucer in his capacity as the Clerk of the King's Works. In The General Prologue of Chaucer's The Canterbury Tales the five guildsmen "were clothed alle in o lyveree Of a solempne and a greet fraternitee"[58] and may be thought of as belonging to the guild in the parish of St Magnus, or one like it.[59] Chaucer's family home was near to the bridge in Thames Street.

 

n 1417 a dispute arose concerning who should take the place of honour amongst the rectors in the City churches at the Whit Monday procession, a place that had been claimed from time to time by the rectors of St Peter Cornhill, St Magnus the Martyr and St Nicholas Cole Abbey. The Mayor and Aldermen decided that the Rector of St Peter Cornhill should take precedence.[61]

St Magnus Corner at the north end of London Bridge was an important meeting place in mediaeval London, where notices were exhibited, proclamations read out and wrongdoers punished.[62] As it was conveniently close to the River Thames, the church was chosen by the Bishop between the 15th and 17th centuries as a convenient venue for general meetings of the clergy in his diocese.[63] Dr John Young, Bishop of Callipolis (rector of St Magnus 1514-15) pronounced judgement on 16 December 1514 (with the Bishop of London and in the presence of Thomas More, then under-sheriff of London) in the heresy case concerning Richard Hunne.[64]

In pictures from the mid-16th century the old church looks very similar to the present-day St Giles without Cripplegate in the Barbican.[65] According to the martyrologist John Foxe, a woman was imprisoned in the 'cage' on London Bridge in April 1555 and told to "cool herself there" for refusing to pray at St Magnus for the recently deceased Pope Julius III.[66]

Simon Lowe, a Member of Parliament and Master of the Merchant Taylors' Company during the reign of Queen Mary and one of the jurors who acquitted Sir Nicholas Throckmorton in 1554, was a parishioner.[67] He was a mourner at the funeral of Maurice Griffith, Bishop of Rochester from 1554 to 1558 and Rector of St Magnus from 1537 to 1558, who was interred in the church on 30 November 1558 with much solemnity. In accordance with the Catholic church's desire to restore ecclesiastical pageantry in England, the funeral was a splendid affair, ending in a magnificent dinner.

 

Lowe was included in a return of recusants in the Diocese of Rochester in 1577,[69] but was buried at St Magnus on 6 February 1578.[70] Stow refers to his monument in the church. His eldest son, Timothy (died 1617), was knighted in 1603. His second son, Alderman Sir Thomas Lowe (1550–1623), was Master of the Haberdashers' Company on several occasions, Sheriff of London in 1595/96, Lord Mayor in 1604/05 and a Member of Parliament for London.[71] His youngest son, Blessed John Lowe (1553–1586), having originally been a Protestant minister, converted to Roman Catholicism, studied for the priesthood at Douay and Rome and returned to London as a missionary priest.[72] His absence had already been noted; a list of 1581 of "such persons of the Diocese of London as have any children ... beyond the seas" records "John Low son to Margaret Low of the Bridge, absent without licence four years". Having gained 500 converts to Catholicism between 1583 and 1586, he was arrested whilst walking with his mother near London Bridge, committed to The Clink and executed at Tyburn on 8 October 1586.[73] He was beatified in 1987 as one of the eighty-five martyrs of England and Wales.

 

Sir William Garrard, Master of the Haberdashers' Company, Alderman, Sheriff of London in 1553/53, Lord Mayor in 1555/56 and a Member of Parliament was born in the parish and buried at St Magnus in 1571.[74] Sir William Romney, merchant, philanthropist, Master of the Haberdashers' Company, Alderman for Bridge Within and Sheriff of London in 1603/04[75] was married at St Magnus in 1582. Ben Jonson is believed to have been married at St Magnus in 1594.[76]

The patronage of St Magnus, having previously been in the Abbots and Convents of Westminster and Bermondsey (who presented alternatively), fell to the Crown on the suppression of the monasteries. In 1553, Queen Mary, by letters patent, granted it to the Bishop of London and his successors.[77]

The church had a series of distinguished rectors in the second half of the 16th and first half of the 17th century, including Myles Coverdale (Rector 1564-66), John Young (Rector 1566-92), Theophilus Aylmer (Rector 1592-1625), (Archdeacon of London and son of John Aylmer), and Cornelius Burges (Rector 1626-41). Coverdale was buried in the chancel of St Bartholomew-by-the-Exchange, but when that church was pulled down in 1840 his remains were removed to St Magnus.[78]

On 5 November 1562 the churchwardens were ordered to break, or cause to be broken, in two parts all the altar stones in the church.[79] Coverdale, an anti-vestiarian, was Rector at the peak of the vestments controversy. In March 1566 Archbishop Parker caused great consternation among many clergy by his edicts prescribing what was to be worn and by his summoning the London clergy to Lambeth to require their compliance. Coverdale excused himself from attending.[80] Stow records that a non-conforming Scot who normally preached at St Magnus twice a day precipitated a fight on Palm Sunday 1566 at Little All Hallows in Thames Street with his preaching against vestments.[81] Coverdale's resignation from St Magnus in summer 1566 may have been associated with these events. Separatist congregations started to emerge after 1566 and the first such, who called themselves 'Puritans' or 'Unspottyd Lambs of the Lord', was discovered close to St Magnus at Plumbers' Hall in Thames Street on 19 June 1567.

 

St Magnus narrowly escaped destruction in 1633. A later edition of Stow's Survey records that "On the 13th day of February, between eleven and twelve at night, there happened in the house of one Briggs, a Needle-maker near St Magnus Church, at the North end of the Bridge, by the carelessness of a Maid-Servant setting a tub of hot sea-coal ashes under a pair of stairs, a sad and lamentable fire, which consumed all the buildings before eight of the clock the next morning, from the North end of the Bridge to the first vacancy on both sides, containing forty-two houses; water then being very scarce, the Thames being almost frozen over."[83] Susannah Chambers "by her last will & testament bearing date 28th December 1640 gave the sum of Twenty-two shillings and Sixpence Yearly for a Sermon to be preached on the 12th day of February in every Year within the Church of Saint Magnus in commemoration of God's merciful preservation of the said Church of Saint Magnus from Ruin, by the late and terrible Fire on London Bridge. Likewise Annually to the Poor the sum of 17/6."[84] The tradition of a "Fire Sermon" was revived on 12 February 2004, when the first preacher was the Rt Revd and Rt Hon Richard Chartres, Bishop of London.

 

Parliamentarian rule and the more Protestant ethos of the 1640s led to the removal or destruction of "superstitious" and "idolatrous" images and fittings. Glass painters such as Baptista Sutton, who had previously installed "Laudian innovations", found new employment by repairing and replacing these to meet increasingly strict Protestant standards. In January 1642 Sutton replaced 93 feet of glass at St Magnus and in June 1644 he was called back to take down the "painted imagery glass" and replace it.[86] In June 1641 "rail riots" broke out at a number of churches. This was a time of high tension following the trial and execution of the Earl of Strafford and rumours of army and popish plots were rife. The Protestation Oath, with its pledge to defend the true religion "against all Popery and popish innovation", triggered demands from parishioners for the removal of the rails as popish innovations which the Protestation had bound them to reform. The minister arranged a meeting between those for and against the pulling down of the rails, but was unsuccessful in reaching a compromise and it was feared that they would be demolished by force.[87] However, in 1663 the parish resumed Laudian practice and re-erected rails around its communion table.[88]

Joseph Caryl was incumbent from 1645 until his ejection in 1662. In 1663 he was reportedly living near London Bridge and preaching to an Independent congregation that met at various places in the City.[89]

During the Great Plague of 1665, the City authorities ordered fires to be kept burning night and day, in the hope that the air would be cleansed. Daniel Defoe's semi-fictictional, but highly realistic, work A Journal of the Plague Year records that one of these was "just by St Magnus Church"

 

Despite its escape in 1633, the church was one of the first buildings to be destroyed in the Great Fire of London in 1666.[91] St Magnus stood less than 300 yards from the bakehouse of Thomas Farriner in Pudding Lane where the fire started. Farriner, a former churchwarden of St Magnus, was buried in the middle aisle of the church on 11 December 1670, perhaps within a temporary structure erected for holding services.[92]

The parish engaged the master mason George Dowdeswell to start the work of rebuilding in 1668. The work was carried forward between 1671 and 1687 under the direction of Sir Christopher Wren, the body of the church being substantially complete by 1676.[93] At a cost of £9,579 19s 10d St Magnus was one of Wren's most expensive churches.[94] The church of St Margaret New Fish Street was not rebuilt after the fire and its parish was united to that of St Magnus.

 

The chancels of many of Wren’s city churches had chequered marble floors and the chancel of St Magnus is an example,[95] the parish agreeing after some debate to place the communion table on a marble ascent with steps[96] and to commission altar rails of Sussex wrought iron. The nave and aisles are paved with freestone flags. A steeple, closely modelled on one built between 1614 and 1624 by François d'Aguilon and Pieter Huyssens for the church of St Carolus Borromeus in Antwerp, was added between 1703 and 1706.[97] London's skyline was transformed by Wren's tall steeples and that of St Magnus is considered to be one his finest.[98]

The large clock projecting from the tower was a well-known landmark in the city as it hung over the roadway of Old London Bridge.[99] It was presented to the church in 1709 by Sir Charles Duncombe[100] (Alderman for the Ward of Bridge Within and, in 1708/09, Lord Mayor of London). Tradition says "that it was erected in consequence of a vow made by the donor, who, in the earlier part of his life, had once to wait a considerable time in a cart upon London Bridge, without being able to learn the hour, when he made a promise, that if he ever became successful in the world, he would give to that Church a public clock ... that all passengers might see the time of day."[101] The maker was Langley Bradley, a clockmaker in Fenchurch Street, who had worked for Wren on many other projects, including the clock for the new St Paul's Cathedral. The sword rest in the church, designed to hold the Lord Mayor's sword and mace when he attended divine service "in state", dates from 1708.

Duncombe and his benefactions to St Magnus feature prominently in Daniel Defoe's The True-Born Englishman, a biting satire on critics of William III that went through several editions from 1700 (the year in which Duncombe was elected Sheriff).

 

Shortly before his death in 1711, Duncombe commissioned an organ for the church, the first to have a swell-box, by Abraham Jordan (father and son).[103] The Spectator announced that "Whereas Mr Abraham Jordan, senior and junior, have, with their own hands, joinery excepted, made and erected a very large organ in St Magnus' Church, at the foot of London Bridge, consisting of four sets of keys, one of which is adapted to the art of emitting sounds by swelling notes, which never was in any organ before; this instrument will be publicly opened on Sunday next [14 February 1712], the performance by Mr John Robinson. The above-said Abraham Jordan gives notice to all masters and performers, that he will attend every day next week at the said Church, to accommodate all those gentlemen who shall have a curiosity to hear it".[104]

The organ case, which remains in its original state, is looked upon as one of the finest existing examples of the Grinling Gibbons's school of wood carving.[105] The first organist of St Magnus was John Robinson (1682–1762), who served in that role for fifty years and in addition as organist of Westminster Abbey from 1727. Other organists have included the blind organist George Warne (1792–1868, organist 1820-26 until his appointment to the Temple Church), James Coward (1824–80, organist 1868-80 who was also organist to the Crystal Palace and renowned for his powers of improvisation) and George Frederick Smith FRCO (1856–1918, organist 1880-1918 and Professor of Music at the Guildhall School of Music).[106] The organ has been restored several times - in 1760, 1782, 1804, 1855, 1861, 1879, 1891, 1924, 1949 after wartime damage and 1997 - since it was first built.[107] Sir Peter Maxwell Davies was one of several patrons of the organ appeal in the mid-1990s[108] and John Scott gave an inaugural recital on 20 May 1998 following the completion of that restoration.[109] The instrument has an Historic Organ Certificate and full details are recorded in the National Pipe Organ Register.[110]

The hymn tune "St Magnus", usually sung at Ascensiontide to the text "The head that once was crowned with thorns", was written by Jeremiah Clarke in 1701 and named for the church.

 

Canaletto drew St Magnus and old London Bridge as they appeared in the late 1740s.[112] Between 1756 and 1762, under the London Bridge Improvement Act of 1756 (c. 40), the Corporation of London demolished the buildings on London Bridge to widen the roadway, ease traffic congestion and improve safety for pedestrians.[113] The churchwardens’ accounts of St Magnus list many payments to those injured on the Bridge and record that in 1752 a man was crushed to death between two carts.[114] After the House of Commons had resolved upon the alteration of London Bridge, the Rev Robert Gibson, Rector of St Magnus, applied to the House for relief; stating that 48l. 6s. 2d. per annum, part of his salary of 170l. per annum, was assessed upon houses on London Bridge; which he should utterly lose by their removal unless a clause in the bill about to be passed should provide a remedy.[115] Accordingly, Sections 18 and 19 of 1756 Act provided that the relevant amounts of tithe and poor rate should be a charge on the Bridge House Estates.[116]

A serious fire broke out on 18 April 1760 in an oil shop at the south east corner of the church, which consumed most of the church roof and did considerable damage to the fabric. The fire burnt warehouses to the south of the church and a number of houses on the northern end of London Bridge.

 

As part of the bridge improvements, overseen by the architect Sir Robert Taylor, a new pedestrian walkway was built along the eastern side of the bridge. With the other buildings gone St Magnus blocked the new walkway.[117] As a consequence it was necessary in 1762 to 1763 to remove the vestry rooms at the West end of the church and open up the side arches of the tower so that people could pass underneath the tower.[118] The tower’s lower storey thus became an external porch. Internally a lobby was created at the West end under the organ gallery and a screen with fine octagonal glazing inserted. A new Vestry was built to the South of the church.[119] The Act also provided that the land taken from the church for the widening was "to be considered ... as part of the cemetery of the said church ... but if the pavement thereof be broken up on account of the burying of any persons, the same shall be ... made good ... by the churchwardens"

 

Soldiers were stationed in the Vestry House of St Magnus during the Gordon Riots in June 1780.[121]

By 1782 the noise level from the activities of Billingsgate Fish Market had become unbearable and the large windows on the north side of the church were blocked up leaving only circular windows high up in the wall.[122] At some point between the 1760s and 1814 the present clerestory was constructed with its oval windows and fluted and coffered plasterwork.[123] J. M. W. Turner painted the church in the mid-1790s.[124]

The rector of St Magnus between 1792 and 1808, following the death of Robert Gibson on 28 July 1791,[125] was Thomas Rennell FRS. Rennell was President of Sion College in 1806/07. There is a monument to Thomas Leigh (Rector 1808-48 and President of Sion College 1829/30,[126] at St Peter's Church, Goldhanger in Essex.[127] Richard Hazard (1761–1837) was connected with the church as sexton, parish clerk and ward beadle for nearly 50 years[128] and served as Master of the Parish Clerks' Company in 1831/32.[129]

In 1825 the church was "repaired and beautified at a very considerable expense. During the reparation the east window, which had been closed, was restored, and the interior of the fabric conformed to the state in which it was left by its great architect, Sir Christopher Wren. The magnificent organ ... was taken down and rebuilt by Mr Parsons, and re-opened, with the church, on the 12th February, 1826".[130] Unfortunately, as a contemporary writer records, "On the night of the 31st of July, 1827, [the church's] safety was threatened by the great fire which consumed the adjacent warehouses, and it is perhaps owing to the strenuous and praiseworthy exertions of the firemen, that the structure exists at present. ... divine service was suspended and not resumed until the 20th January 1828. In the interval the church received such tasteful and elegant decorations, that it may now compete with any church in the metropolis.

 

In 1823 royal assent was given to ‘An Act for the Rebuilding of London Bridge’ and in 1825 John Garratt, Lord Mayor and Alderman of the Ward of Bridge Within, laid the first stone of the new London Bridge.[132] In 1831 Sir John Rennie’s new bridge was opened further upstream and the old bridge demolished. St Magnus ceased to be the gateway to London as it had been for over 600 years. Peter de Colechurch[133] had been buried in the crypt of the chapel on the bridge and his bones were unceremoniously dumped in the River Thames.[134] In 1921 two stones from Old London Bridge were discovered across the road from the church. They now stand in the churchyard.

Wren's church of St Michael Crooked Lane was demolished, the final service on Sunday 20 March 1831 having to be abandoned due to the effects of the building work. The Rector of St Michael preached a sermon the following Sunday at St Magnus lamenting the demolition of his church with its monuments and "the disturbance of the worship of his parishioners on the preceeding Sabbath".[135] The parish of St Michael Crooked Lane was united to that of St Magnus, which itself lost a burial ground in Church Yard Alley to the approach road for the new bridge.[136] However, in substitution it had restored to it the land taken for the widening of the old bridge in 1762 and was also given part of the approach lands to the east of the old bridge.[137] In 1838 the Committee for the London Bridge Approaches reported to Common Council that new burial grounds had been provided for the parishes of St Michael, Crooked Lane and St Magnus, London Bridge.

 

Depictions of St Magnus after the building of the new bridge, seen behind Fresh Wharf and the new London Bridge Wharf, include paintings by W. Fenoulhet in 1841 and by Charles Ginner in 1913.[139] This prospect was affected in 1924 by the building of Adelaide House to a design by John James Burnet,[140] The Times commenting that "the new ‘architectural Matterhorn’ ... conceals all but the tip of the church spire".[141] There was, however, an excellent view of the church for a few years between the demolition of Adelaide Buildings and the erection of its replacement.[142] Adelaide House is now listed.[143] Regis House, on the site of the abandoned King William Street terminus of the City & South London Railway (subsequently the Northern Line),[144] and the Steam Packet Inn, on the corner of Lower Thames Street and Fish Street Hill,[145] were developed in 1931.

 

By the early 1960s traffic congestion had become a problem[147] and Lower Thames Street was widened over the next decade[148] to form part of a significant new east-west transport artery (the A3211).[149] The setting of the church was further affected by the construction of a new London Bridge between 1967 and 1973.[150] The New Fresh Wharf warehouse to the east of the church, built in 1939, was demolished in 1973-4 following the collapse of commercial traffic in the Pool of London[151] and, after an archaeological excavation,[152] St Magnus House was constructed on the site in 1978 to a design by R. Seifert & Partners.[153] This development now allows a clear view of the church from the east side.[154] The site to the south east of The Monument (between Fish Street Hill and Pudding Lane), formerly predominantly occupied by fish merchants,[155] was redeveloped as Centurion House and Gartmore (now Providian) House at the time of the closure of old Billingsgate Market in January 1982.[156] A comprehensive redevelopment of Centurion House began in October 2011 with completion planned in 2013.[157] Regis House, to the south west of The Monument, was redeveloped by Land Securities PLC in 1998.[158]

The vista from The Monument south to the River Thames, over the roof of St Magnus, is protected under the City of London Unitary Development Plan,[159] although the South bank of the river is now dominated by The Shard. Since 2004 the City of London Corporation has been exploring ways of enhancing the Riverside Walk to the south of St Magnus.[160] Work on a new staircase to connect London Bridge to the Riverside Walk is due to commence in March 2013.[161] The story of St Magnus's relationship with London Bridge and an interview with the rector featured in the television programme The Bridges That Built London with Dan Cruickshank, first broadcast on BBC Four on 14 June 2012.[162] The City Corporation's 'Fenchurch and Monument Area Enhancement Strategy' of August 2012 recommended ways of reconnecting St Magnus and the riverside to the area north of Lower Thames Street.

 

A lectureship at St Michael Crooked Lane, which was transferred to St Magnus in 1831, was endowed by the wills of Thomas and Susannah Townsend in 1789 and 1812 respectively.[164] The Revd Henry Robert Huckin, Headmaster of Repton School from 1874 to 1882, was appointed Townsend Lecturer at St Magnus in 1871.[165]

St Magnus narrowly escaped damage from a major fire in Lower Thames Street in October 1849.

 

During the second half of the 19th century the rectors were Alexander McCaul, DD (1799–1863, Rector 1850-63), who coined the term 'Judaeo Christian' in a letter dated 17 October 1821,[167] and his son Alexander Israel McCaul (1835–1899, curate 1859-63, rector 1863-99). The Revd Alexander McCaul Sr[168] was a Christian missionary to the Polish Jews, who (having declined an offer to become the first Anglican Bishop in Jerusalem)[169] was appointed professor of Hebrew and rabbinical literature at King's College, London in 1841. His daughter, Elizabeth Finn (1825–1921), a noted linguist, founded the Distressed Gentlefolk Aid Association (now known as Elizabeth Finn Care).[170]

In 1890 it was reported that the Bishop of London was to hold an inquiry as to the desirability of uniting the benefices of St George Botolph Lane and St Magnus. The expectation was a fusion of the two livings, the demolition of St George’s and the pensioning of "William Gladstone’s favourite Canon", Malcolm MacColl. Although services ceased there, St George’s was not demolished until 1904. The parish was then merged with St Mary at Hill rather than St Magnus.[171]

The patronage of the living was acquired in the late 19th century by Sir Henry Peek Bt. DL MP, Senior Partner of Peek Brothers & Co of 20 Eastcheap, the country's largest firm of wholesale tea brokers and dealers, and Chairman of the Commercial Union Assurance Co. Peek was a generous philanthropist who was instrumental in saving both Wimbledon Common and Burnham Beeches from development. His grandson, Sir Wilfred Peek Bt. DSO JP, presented a cousin, Richard Peek, as rector in 1904. Peek, an ardent Freemason, held the office of Grand Chaplain of England. The Times recorded that his memorial service in July 1920 "was of a semi-Masonic character, Mr Peek having been a prominent Freemason".[172] In June 1895 Peek had saved the life of a young French girl who jumped overboard from a ferry midway between Dinard and St Malo in Brittany and was awarded the bronze medal of the Royal Humane Society and the Gold Medal 1st Class of the Sociâetâe Nationale de Sauvetage de France.[173]

In November 1898 a memorial service was held at St Magnus for Sir Stuart Knill Bt. (1824–1898), head of the firm of John Knill and Co, wharfingers, and formerly Lord Mayor and Master of the Plumbers' Company.[174] This was the first such service for a Roman Catholic taken in an Anglican church.[175] Sir Stuart's son, Sir John Knill Bt. (1856-1934), also served as Alderman for the Ward of Bridge Within, Lord Mayor and Master of the Plumbers' Company.

 

Until 1922 the annual Fish Harvest Festival was celebrated at St Magnus.[176] The service moved in 1923 to St Dunstan in the East[177] and then to St Mary at Hill, but St Magnus retained close links with the local fish merchants until the closure of old Billingsgate Market. St Magnus, in the 1950s, was "buried in the stink of Billingsgate fish-market, against which incense was a welcome antidote".

 

A report in 1920 proposed the demolition of nineteen City churches, including St Magnus.[179] A general outcry from members of the public and parishioners alike prevented the execution of this plan.[180] The members of the City Livery Club passed a resolution that they regarded "with horror and indignation the proposed demolition of 19 City churches" and pledged the Club to do everything in its power to prevent such a catastrophe.[181] T. S. Eliot wrote that the threatened churches gave "to the business quarter of London a beauty which its hideous banks and commercial houses have not quite defaced. ... the least precious redeems some vulgar street ... The loss of these towers, to meet the eye down a grimy lane, and of these empty naves, to receive the solitary visitor at noon from the dust and tumult of Lombard Street, will be irreparable and unforgotten."[182] The London County Council published a report concluding that St Magnus was "one of the most beautiful of all Wren's works" and "certainly one of the churches which should not be demolished without specially good reasons and after very full consideration."[183] Due to the uncertainty about the church's future, the patron decided to defer action to fill the vacancy in the benefice and a curate-in-charge temporarily took responsibility for the parish.[184] However, on 23 April 1921 it was announced that the Revd Henry Joy Fynes-Clinton would be the new Rector. The Times concluded that the appointment, with the Bishop’s approval, meant that the proposed demolition would not be carried out.[185] Fr Fynes-Clinton was inducted on 31 May 1921.[186]

The rectory, built by Robert Smirke in 1833-5, was at 39 King William Street.[187] A decision was taken in 1909 to sell the property, the intention being to purchase a new rectory in the suburbs, but the sale fell through and at the time of the 1910 Land Tax Valuations the building was being let out to a number of tenants. The rectory was sold by the diocese on 30 May 1921 for £8,000 to Ridgways Limited, which owned the adjoining premises.[188] The Vestry House adjoining the south west of the church, replacing the one built in the 1760s, may also have been by Smirke. Part of the burial ground of St Michael Crooked Lane, located between Fish Street Hill and King William Street, survived as an open space until 1987 when it was compulsorily purchased to facilitate the extension of the Docklands Light Railway into the City.[189] The bodies were reburied at Brookwood Cemetery.

 

The interior of the church was restored by Martin Travers in 1924, in a neo-baroque style,[191] reflecting the Anglo-Catholic character of the congregation[192] following the appointment of Henry Joy Fynes-Clinton as Rector.[193] Fr Fynes, as he was often known, served as Rector of St Magnus from 31 May 1921 until his death on 4 December 1959 and substantially beautified the interior of the church.[194]

Fynes-Clinton held very strong Anglo-Catholic views, and proceeded to make St Magnus as much like a baroque Roman Catholic church as possible. However, "he was such a loveable character with an old-world courtesy which was irresistible, that it was difficult for anyone to be unpleasant to him, however much they might disapprove of his views".[195] He generally said the Roman Mass in Latin; and in personality was "grave, grand, well-connected and holy, with a laconic sense of humour".[196] To a Protestant who had come to see Coverdale's monument he is reported to have said "We have just had a service in the language out of which he translated the Bible".[197] The use of Latin in services was not, however, without grammatical danger. A response from his parishioners of "Ora pro nobis" after "Omnes sancti Angeli et Archangeli" in the Litany of the Saints would elicit a pause and the correction "No, Orate pro nobis."

 

In 1922 Fynes-Clinton refounded the Fraternity of Our Lady de Salve Regina.[198] The Fraternity's badge[199] is shown in the stained glass window at the east end of the north wall of the church above the reredos of the Lady Chapel altar. He also erected a statue of Our Lady of Walsingham and arranged pilgrimages to the Norfolk shrine, where he was one of the founding Guardians.[200] In 1928 the journal of the Catholic League reported that St Magnus had presented a votive candle to the Shrine at Walsingham "in token of our common Devotion and the mutual sympathy and prayers that are we hope a growing bond between the peaceful country shrine and the church in the heart of the hurrying City, from the Altar of which the Pilgrimages regularly start".[201]

Fynes-Clinton was General Secretary of the Anglican and Eastern Orthodox Churches Union and its successor, the Anglican and Eastern Churches Association, from 1906 to 1920 and served as Secretary to the Archbishop of Canterbury's Eastern Churches Committee from 1920 to around 1924. A Solemn Requiem was celebrated at St Magnus in September 1921 for the late King Peter of the Serbs, Croats and Slovenes.

At the midday service on 1 March 1922, J.A. Kensit, leader of the Protestant Truth Society, got up and protested against the form of worship.[202] The proposed changes to the church in 1924 led to a hearing in the Consistory Court of the Chancellor of the Diocese of London and an appeal to the Court of Arches.[203] Judgement was given by the latter Court in October 1924. The advowson was purchased in 1931, without the knowledge of the Rector and Parochial Church Council, by the evangelical Sir Charles King-Harman.[204] A number of such cases, including the purchase of the advowsons of Clapham and Hampstead Parish Churches by Sir Charles, led to the passage of the Benefices (Purchase of Rights of Patronage) Measure 1933.[205] This allowed the parishioners of St Magnus to purchase the advowson from Sir Charles King-Harman for £1,300 in 1934 and transfer it to the Patronage Board.

 

St Magnus was one of the churches that held special services before the opening of the second Anglo-Catholic Congress in 1923.[207] Fynes-Clinton[208] was the first incumbent to hold lunchtime services for City workers.[209] Pathé News filmed the Palm Sunday procession at St Magnus in 1935.[210] In The Towers of Trebizond, the novel by Rose Macauley published in 1956, Fr Chantry-Pigg's church is described as being several feet higher than St Mary’s Bourne Street and some inches above even St Magnus the Martyr.[211]

In July 1937 Fr Fynes-Clinton, with two members of his congregation, travelled to Kirkwall to be present at the 800th anniversary celebrations of St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall. During their stay they visited Egilsay and were shown the spot where St Magnus had been slain. Later Fr Fynes-Clinton was present at a service held at the roofless church of St Magnus on Egilsay, where he suggested to his host Mr Fryer, the minister of the Cathedral, that the congregations of Kirkwall and London should unite to erect a permanent stone memorial on the traditional site where Earl Magnus had been murdered. In 1938 a cairn was built of local stone on Egilsay. It stands 12 feet high and is 6 feet broad at its base. The memorial was dedicated on 7 September 1938 and a bronze inscription on the monument reads "erected by the Rector and Congregation of St Magnus the Martyr by London Bridge and the Minister and Congregation of St Magnus Cathedral, Kirkwall to commemorate the traditional spot where Earl Magnus was slain, AD circa 1116 and to commemorate the Octocentenary of St Magnus Cathedral 1937"

 

A bomb which fell on London Bridge in 1940 during the Blitz of World War II blew out all the windows and damaged the plasterwork and the roof of the north aisle.[213] However, the church was designated a Grade I listed building on 4 January 1950[214] and repaired in 1951, being re-opened for worship in June of that year by the Bishop of London, William Wand.[215] The architect was Laurence King.[216] Restoration and redecoration work has subsequently been carried out several times, including after a fire in the early hours of 4 November 1995.[217] Cleaning of the exterior stonework was completed in 2010.

 

Some minor changes were made to the parish boundary in 1954, including the transfer to St Magnus of an area between Fish Street Hill and Pudding Lane. The site of St Leonard Eastcheap, a church that was not rebuilt after the Great Fire, is therefore now in the parish of St Magnus despite being united to St Edmund the King.

Fr Fynes-Clinton marked the 50th anniversary of his priesthood in May 1952 with High Mass at St Magnus and lunch at Fishmongers' Hall.[218] On 20 September 1956 a solemn Mass was sung in St Magnus to commence the celebration of the 25th anniversary of the restoration of the Holy House at Walsingham in 1931. In the evening of that day a reception was held in the large chamber of Caxton Hall, when between three and four hundred guests assembled.[219]

Fr Fynes-Clinton was succeeded as rector in 1960 by Fr Colin Gill,[220] who remained as incumbent until his death in 1983.[221] Fr Gill was also closely connected with Walsingham and served as a Guardian between 1953 and 1983, including nine years as Master of the College of Guardians.[222] He celebrated the Mass at the first National Pilgrimage in 1959[223] and presided over the Jubilee celebrations to mark the 50th anniversary of the Shrine in 1981, having been present at the Holy House's opening.[224] A number of the congregation of St Stephen's Lewisham moved to St Magnus around 1960, following temporary changes in the form of worship there.

 

In 1994 the Templeman Commission proposed a radical restructuring of the churches in the City Deanery. St Magnus was identified as one of the 12 churches that would remain as either a parish or an 'active' church.[226] However, the proposals were dropped following a public outcry and the consecration of a new Bishop of London.

The parish priest since 2003 has been Fr Philip Warner, who was previously priest-in-charge of St Mary's Church, Belgrade (Diocese in Europe) and Apokrisiarios for the Archbishop of Canterbury to the Serbian Orthodox Church. Since January 2004 there has been an annual Blessing of the Thames, with the congregations of St Magnus and Southwark Cathedral meeting in the middle of London Bridge.[227] On Sunday 3 July 2011, in anticipation of the feast of the translation of St Thomas Becket (7 July), a procession from St Magnus brought a relic of the saint to the middle of the bridge.[228]

David Pearson specially composed two new pieces, a communion anthem A Mhànais mo rùin (O Magnus of my love) and a hymn to St Magnus Nobilis, humilis, for performance at the church on the feast of St Magnus the Martyr, 16 April 2012.[229] St Magnus's organist, John Eady, has won composition competitions for new choral works at St Paul's Cathedral (a setting of Veni Sancte Spiritus first performed on 27 May 2012) and at Lincoln Cathedral (a setting of the Matin responsory for Advent first performed on 30 November 2013).[230]

In addition to liturgical music of a high standard, St Magnus is the venue for a wide range of musical events. The Clemens non Papa Consort, founded in 2005, performs in collaboration with the production team Concert Bites as the church's resident ensemble.[231] The church is used by The Esterhazy Singers for rehearsals and some concerts.[232] The band Mishaped Pearls performed at the church on 17 December 2011.[233] St Magnus featured in the television programme Jools Holland: London Calling, first broadcast on BBC2 on 9 June 2012.[234] The Platinum Consort made a promotional film at St Magnus for the release of their debut album In the Dark on 2 July 2012.[235]

The Friends of the City Churches had their office in the Vestry House of St Magnus until 2013.

 

Martin Travers modified the high altar reredos, adding paintings of Moses and Aaron and the Ten Commandments between the existing Corinthian columns and reconstructing the upper storey. Above the reredos Travers added a painted and gilded rood.[237] In the centre of the reredos there is a carved gilded pelican (an early Christian symbol of self-sacrifice) and a roundel with Baroque-style angels. The glazed east window, which can be seen in an early photograph of the church, appears to have been filled in at this time. A new altar with console tables was installed and the communion rails moved outwards to extend the size of the sanctuary. Two old door frames were used to construct side chapels and placed at an angle across the north-east and south-east corners of the church. One, the Lady Chapel, was dedicated to the Rector's parents in 1925 and the other was dedicated to Christ the King. Originally, a baroque aumbry was used for Reservation of the Blessed Sacrament, but later a tabernacle was installed on the Lady Chapel altar and the aumbry was used to house a relic of the True Cross.

The interior was made to look more European by the removal of the old box pews and the installation of new pews with cut-down ends. Two new columns were inserted in the nave to make the lines regular. The Wren-period pulpit by the joiner William Grey[238] was opened up and provided with a soundboard and crucifix. Travers also designed the statue of St Magnus of Orkney, which stands in the south aisle, and the statue of Our Lady of Walsingham.[239]

On the north wall there is a Russian Orthodox icon, painted in 1908. The modern stations of the cross in honey-coloured Japanese oak are the work of Robert Randall and Ashley Sands.[240] One of the windows in the north wall dates from 1671 and came from Plumbers' Hall in Chequer Yard, Bush Lane, which was demolished in 1863 to make way for Cannon Street Railway Station.[241] A fireplace from the Hall was re-erected in the Vestry House. The other windows on the north side are by Alfred Wilkinson and date from 1952 to 1960. These show the arms of the Plumbers’, Fishmongers’ and Coopers’ Companies together with those of William Wand when Bishop of London and Geoffrey Fisher when Archbishop of Canterbury and (as noted above) the badge of the Fraternity of Our Lady de Salve Regina.

The stained glass windows in the south wall, which are by Lawrence Lee and date from 1949 to 1955, represent lost churches associated with the parish: St Magnus and his ruined church of Egilsay, St Margaret of Antioch with her lost church in New Fish Street (where the Monument to the Great Fire now stands), St Michael with his lost church of Crooked Lane (demolished to make way for the present King William Street) and St Thomas Becket with his chapel on Old London Bridge.[242]

The church possesses a fine model of Old London Bridge. One of the tiny figures on the bridge appears out of place in the mediaeval setting, wearing a policeman's uniform. This is a representation of the model-maker, David T. Aggett, who is a Liveryman of the Worshipful Company of Plumbers and was formerly in the police service.[243]

The Mischiefs by Fire Act 1708 and the Fires Prevention (Metropolis) Act 1774 placed a requirement on every parish to keep equipment to fight fires. The church owns two historic fire engines that belonged to the parish of St Michael, Crooked Lane.[244] One of these is in storage at the Museum of London. The whereabouts of the other, which was misappropriated and sold at auction in 2003, is currently unknown.

In 1896 many bodies were disinterred from the crypt and reburied at the St Magnus's plot at Brookwood Cemetery, which remains the church's burial ground.

 

Prior to the Great Fire of 1666 the old tower had a ring of five bells, a small saints bell and a clock bell.[246] 47 cwt of bell metal was recovered[247] which suggests that the tenor was 13 or 14 cwt. The metal was used to cast three new bells, by William Eldridge of Chertsey in 1672,[248] with a further saints bell cast that year by Hodson.[249] In the absence of a tower, the tenor and saints bell were hung in a free standing timber structure, whilst the others remained unhung.[250]

A new tower was completed in 1704 and it is likely that these bells were transferred to it. However, the tenor became cracked in 1713 and it was decided to replace the bells with a new ring of eight.[251] The new bells, with a tenor of 21 cwt, were cast by Richard Phelps of the Whitechapel Bell Foundry. Between 1714 and 1718 (the exact date of which is unknown), the ring was increased to ten with the addition of two trebles given by two former ringing Societies, the Eastern Youths and the British Scholars.[252] The first peal was rung on 15 February 1724 of Grandsire Caters by the Society of College Youths. The second bell had to be recast in 1748 by Robert Catlin, and the tenor was recast in 1831 by Thomas Mears of Whitechapel,[253] just in time to ring for the opening of the new London Bridge. In 1843, the treble was said to be "worn out" and so was scrapped, together with the saints bell, while a new treble was cast by Thomas Mears.[254] A new clock bell was erected in the spire in 1846, provided by B R & J Moore, who had earlier purchased it from Thomas Mears.[255] This bell can still be seen in the tower from the street.

The 10 bells were removed for safe keeping in 1940 and stored in the churchyard. They were taken to Whitechapel Bell Foundry in 1951 whereupon it was discovered that four of them were cracked. After a long period of indecision, fuelled by lack of funds and interest, the bells were finally sold for scrap in 1976. The metal was used to cast many of the Bells of Congress that were then hung in the Old Post Office Tower in Washington, D.C.

A fund was set up on 19 September 2005, led by Dickon Love, a member of the Ancient Society of College Youths, with a view to installing a new ring of 12 bells in the tower in a new frame. This was the first of three new rings of bells he has installed in the City of London (the others being at St Dunstan-in-the-West and St James Garlickhythe). The money was raised and the bells were cast during 2008/9 by the Whitechapel Bell Foundry. The tenor weighed 26cwt 3qtr 9 lbs (1360 kg) and the new bells were designed to be in the same key as the former ring of ten. They were consecrated by the Bishop of London on 3 March 2009 in the presence of the Lord Mayor[256] and the ringing dedicated on 26 October 2009 by the Archdeacon of London.[257] The bells are named (in order smallest to largest) Michael, Margaret, Thomas of Canterbury, Mary, Cedd, Edward the Confessor, Dunstan, John the Baptist, Erkenwald, Paul, Mellitus and Magnus.[258] The bells project is recorded by an inscription in the vestibule of the church.

 

The first peal on the twelve was rung on 29 November 2009 of Cambridge Surprise Maximus.[260] Notable other recent peals include a peal of Stedman Cinques on 16 April 2011 to mark the 400th anniversary of the granting of a Royal Charter to the Plumbers' Company,[261] a peal of Cambridge Surprise Royal on 28 June 2011 when the Fishmongers' Company gave a dinner for Prince Philip, Duke of Edinburgh at their hall on the occasion of his 90th birthday[262] and a peal of Avon Delight Maximus on 24 July 2011 in solidarity with the people of Norway following the tragic massacre on Utoeya Island and in Oslo.[263] On the latter occasion the flag of the Orkney Islands was flown at half mast. In 2012 peals were rung during the Thames Diamond Jubilee Pag

Celebrate fall with a festive Halloween Pumpkin Banner! This craft kit makes a 7-foot long banner with 12 orange cardstock pumpkins and lots and lots of mix-and-match decorations. We’re talking decorative ribbons, sequins, BOO letters, jack-o-lantern faces and more! Each pumpkin measures approximately 3 x 4 inches and can be decorated to your heart’s desire.

 

This craft kit is good for any age because I’ve included bigger decorations for itty-bitty hands and smaller decorations for bigger hands with more advanced fine motor skills. This kit is not just for kids. I’m serious! I had a blast making the sample banner. And when I was done, I felt like a crafty genius. You, too, can be a crafty genius! And so can your kids! Be a crafty genius family! It will be awesome and everyone will want to be like you.

 

If you want some super quality time, have the whole family make it together. Just lay out all the decorations I’ve included, divvy up the pumpkins, and have a blast decorating. When everyone is done, string up the pumpkins on the ribbon and you have just given your little one(s) a childhood memory that you can bring out year after year.

 

If you have 2 or more kids decorating the pumpkins, but they each want a banner, just cut the banner ribbon in half (or thirds, etc.) to make mini-banners.

 

Or, make individual pumpkins and pass them out to family members as Halloween gifts.

 

Custom Colors:

If you would like to make any changes to the following colors to match your Halloween decor, it's no problem! Just let me know in the Message To Seller part of check out and I'll do my best to make your kit perfect for your home!

The kit includes 12 orange pumpkins (some of the pumpkins in the pictures look a bit darker, but they are really all the same orange color). If you would like a different color (like white or black), let me know.

The 7 foot long ribbon banner is green to look like a vine. If you would like a different color, let me know.

The small decorative ribbons come in a variety of colors. If you would like all the ribbon in only one or two colors, let me know.

 

With this kit, all of the planning and organizing of the materials has already been done for you. Some materials may differ slightly, but all will coordinate nicely. Easy step-by-step instructions with color photographs and most materials are included.

 

*For this kit you will need to supply: scissors.

 

*Each kit contains materials for 1 banner with 12 pumpkins and comes in a super cute cello bag. The bag is perfect for gift giving and will make any kid feel special!

 

*This kit is appropriate for ages 3 (with adult help) and up.

 

*Contains some parts (sequins, ribbon) that may not be suitable for your younger crafters, please be careful.

 

Kid Kits are perfect to give to caregivers or grandparents to do with your kids!

 

Kid Kits are also great for original birthday presents, party favors, and rainy day treats.

 

Make your life easier! I also make class and party sets!

I found this while helping my parents go through my grandparent's things after they passed away. At one point the horseshoe nails were all shiny but I hung it on the side of the house where weather turned them into this lovely rusty color.

Celebrate fall with a festive Halloween Pumpkin Banner! This craft kit makes a 7-foot long banner with 12 orange cardstock pumpkins and lots and lots of mix-and-match decorations. We’re talking decorative ribbons, sequins, BOO letters, jack-o-lantern faces and more! Each pumpkin measures approximately 3 x 4 inches and can be decorated to your heart’s desire.

 

This craft kit is good for any age because I’ve included bigger decorations for itty-bitty hands and smaller decorations for bigger hands with more advanced fine motor skills. This kit is not just for kids. I’m serious! I had a blast making the sample banner. And when I was done, I felt like a crafty genius. You, too, can be a crafty genius! And so can your kids! Be a crafty genius family! It will be awesome and everyone will want to be like you.

 

If you want some super quality time, have the whole family make it together. Just lay out all the decorations I’ve included, divvy up the pumpkins, and have a blast decorating. When everyone is done, string up the pumpkins on the ribbon and you have just given your little one(s) a childhood memory that you can bring out year after year.

 

If you have 2 or more kids decorating the pumpkins, but they each want a banner, just cut the banner ribbon in half (or thirds, etc.) to make mini-banners.

 

Or, make individual pumpkins and pass them out to family members as Halloween gifts.

 

Custom Colors:

If you would like to make any changes to the following colors to match your Halloween decor, it's no problem! Just let me know in the Message To Seller part of check out and I'll do my best to make your kit perfect for your home!

The kit includes 12 orange pumpkins (some of the pumpkins in the pictures look a bit darker, but they are really all the same orange color). If you would like a different color (like white or black), let me know.

The 7 foot long ribbon banner is green to look like a vine. If you would like a different color, let me know.

The small decorative ribbons come in a variety of colors. If you would like all the ribbon in only one or two colors, let me know.

 

With this kit, all of the planning and organizing of the materials has already been done for you. Some materials may differ slightly, but all will coordinate nicely. Easy step-by-step instructions with color photographs and most materials are included.

 

*For this kit you will need to supply: scissors.

 

*Each kit contains materials for 1 banner with 12 pumpkins and comes in a super cute cello bag. The bag is perfect for gift giving and will make any kid feel special!

 

*This kit is appropriate for ages 3 (with adult help) and up.

 

*Contains some parts (sequins, ribbon) that may not be suitable for your younger crafters, please be careful.

 

Kid Kits are perfect to give to caregivers or grandparents to do with your kids!

 

Kid Kits are also great for original birthday presents, party favors, and rainy day treats.

 

Make your life easier! I also make class and party sets!

Wreath for All Souls Day - Guirnalda por el Día de Muertos

"I knew a man who once said, 'death smiles at us all; all a man [sentient being] can do is smile back.' " ~From the movie Gladiator

 

"And they that be wise shall shine as the brightness of the firmament; and they that turn many to righteousness as the stars for ever and ever." Daniel 12:3

 

"...for [us] Mexicans/[Mexican-Americans] who believe in the life/death/rebirth continuum, it's all very natural. this is not to say that [we] treat death lightly. [We] don't. It's just that [we] recognize it, mock it, even defy it. Death is part of life and, as such, it's representative of the Mexican spirit and tradition which says: 'Don't take anything lying down - even death!' "

www.mexonline.com/daydead.htm

 

Lithuanian All Souls Day Prayer

Dear souls of the dead,

you are still remembered by [us];

you are most worthy of our perpetual remembrance,

especially you, my grandparents, my parents,

also our relatives, children,

and everyone whom death

took away from our [lives].

I invite you to this annual feast.

We pray that this feast be agreeable to you,

just like the memory of you is to us. Lithuanian All Souls Day Prayer

Dear souls of the dead,

you are still remembered by my family;

you are most worthy of our perpetual remembrance,

especially you, my grandparents, my parents,

also our relatives, children,

and everyone whom death

took away from our home.

I invite you to this annual feast.

We pray that this feast be agreeable to you,

just like the memory of you is to us.

www.churchyear.net/allsoulsprayers.html

 

I have saved several partial decks of cards for several years now, because the backs of the cards were too beautiful to throw out. Surely there must be something I could do with them.

 

So this year I decided to make Christmas ornaments out of them. I used Microsoft Word to make some triangles and pentagons, traced them onto the cards, cut them out with tabs, folded and sandpapered the tabs, and (after many failed attempts with Elmer's) hot-glued the cards together. I've finished one icosahedron (the red one made of triangles) and three dodecahedra. The red one might be my only icosahedron, because glueing 12 pieces together is a lot easier than glueing 20!

 

On a whim I decided to cut a few from the fronts of the cards - the Jacks, Kings and Queens. That one turned out to be my favorite, and now I'm on the lookout for more cards!

 

As I was making that ornament, I thought of my Dutch Reformed friends whose parents wouldn't allow them to play with cards. Rook was OK, the regular deck of cards was not, and it had something to do with the face cards - I forget what the specific evils of the face cards were. And I thought of some Southern Baptist and other Puritanical friends whose parents frowned on ALL card-playing as a waste of time and therefore evil.

 

And I wondered how these parents and grandparents might view my making Christmas ornaments out of these "devilish" cards. I kept thinking about Psalm 2 - "The Kings of the earth rise up, and the rulers take counsel together against the Lord and his anointed." Kings of the earth, I read somewhere, doesn't just mean "earthly kings" - it means rulers who stand in opposition to God.

 

And I was thinking of the royalty represented by the deck of cards - a few Biblical figures like King David, but some pretty wicked rulers as well.

 

It occurred to me then, with a little whimsy, that hanging playing cards on a Christmas tree could be more than just decoration. It could have meaning - and it could have redemptive meaning. After a bit of sleuthing in the Bible I found Psalm 72:11 - "Let all kings bow before him, all nations serve him." It's written about Solomon, but it's also foretelling the Messiah.

 

I don't mind if the ornaments are just decoration. But to any of my friends who might have lingering doubts about hanging "evil" cards on the Christmas tree, I'm glad to supply a "redeemed" meaning. These kings, queens, and jacks on your tree are foreshadowing the day when all kings and nations will recognize and bow down to the true King.

Another lovely relic from my grandparents' home.

Perfect for your little alien!

 

Here are three things you can’t come crying to me about if you order this super awesome kit:

 

1. Don’t come crying to me if your kid glows in the dark after not-so-carefully painting the Saturn with the included non-toxic glow-in-the-dark paint.

 

2. Don’t come crying to me if in 10 years you still have glitter in your carpet because your kid used, no matter how carefully, the included glitter to make Saturn’s rings.

 

3. Don’t come crying to me if your kid wants to make the entire Solar System after having THE BEST TIME EVER making Saturn. I only carry planet Saturn at this time. I can only do so much.

 

Once Saturn is completed and hanging, you are in the glow-in-the-dark paint and glitter safety zone. It’s the creative process that may possibly have you cursing my name. I’m okay with that. My name is Darcy.

 

Custom Colors: When my daughter was making hers, she saw the non-Saturn glitter colors of pink and green up on my shelf. She's 4 and believes color coordinating with her room is more important than being scientifically correct. And let me tell you, her Saturn is adorable! If your child would be thrilled to have a specific color of glitter, it’s no problem! (The glow-in-the-dark paint for the planet will still be yellow.) Just let me know in the message to the seller part of check out.

 

With this kit, all of the planning and organizing of the materials has already been done for you. Easy step-by-step instructions with color photographs and most materials are included.

 

*For this kit you will need to supply: a pushpin to hang Saturn from the ceiling (optional).

 

*Each kit contains materials for 1 Planet Saturn and comes in a super cute biodegradable box (shown in the last two pictures). The box is perfect for gift giving and will make any kid feel special!

 

*This kit is appropriate for ages 3 (with adult help) and up.

 

*Contains some parts (toothpicks, Christmas ornament hooks, monofilament) that are for adult use only. Your child will be in charge of painting and gluing and glittering. A grown-up needs to be in charge of the semi-sharp stuff. Please be careful with your younger crafters.

 

Kid Kits are perfect to give to caregivers or grandparents to do with your kids!

Kid Kits are also great for original birthday presents, party favors, and rainy day treats.

 

Make your life easier! I also make class and party sets!

 

I blogged about this kit here: smartbottomenterprises.blogspot.com/2010/02/saturn-craft-...

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, most people in Glasgow lived in tenement flats. At that time they were not referred to as ‘flats’, but as ‘tenement houses’. The National Trust for Scotland’s Tenement House is on the first floor of an ordinary red sandstone tenement in Buccleuch Street, in Glasgow’s city centre. The Trust is preserving it as an important part of the nation’s heritage not only because it is typical of the flats so many Scots used to live in, but also because it has survived almost unchanged for over a century.

 

The tenement was an ideal way of housing a population which grew rapidly during Glasgow’s industrial expansion in the first half of the 19th century. It provided accommodation for many families on the minimum of valuable building land, and it could be adapted to suit the incomes of different social classes. In working-class areas, tenement flats had only two rooms (‘room and kitchen’ flats) or even only one room (the ‘single-end’). Three-quarters of all tenement flats in Glasgow were either room and kitchen houses or single-ends. Flats like the Tenement House, with two rooms and a kitchen and bathroom, were built for the slightly better-off; for even wealthier people, there were larger flats with four, five or even more rooms.

 

Glasgow tenements were built in white or red sandstone and usually had three or four floors, with two or more separate flats on each floor. The tenement at 145 Buccleuch Street is red sandstone and has four floors with two flats on each floor. The National Trust for Scotland now owns both ground floor flats as well as the Tenement House. One ground-floor flat is used as a reception area with exhibitions on tenement life and the history of the tenement in Glasgow. The other flat has an education room for school groups, and office and storage space. The rest of the building is private as there are still people living in their own homes. So, it is still a real tenement!

 

For over fifty years one of the first floor flats was the home of Miss Agnes Toward, who came to live there in 1911, along with her widowed mother Mrs Agnes Toward. Miss Toward’s life was in most respects very ordinary and it is just that which makes her story so interesting. She reminds us of people we have known: grandmothers, aunts, elderly neighbours. Her home offers a uniquely detailed insight into everyday life in the first half of the 20th century.

 

Miss Toward was born in 1886 in nearby Renfrew Street, and was the only surviving child of William and Agnes Toward. She had two younger sisters who died in infancy and her father, a commercial traveller in metals, died when she was only three years old. Agnes was brought up by her mother, who made a living by dressmaking and taking in lodgers.

 

For most of her life Miss Toward worked as a shorthand typist with a shipping firm, and retired when she was in her seventies. After her mother’s death in 1939, she lived in the flat on her own and made very few changes except for occasional redecorating and, in 1960, having electric light installed. She kept all sorts of things other people would have thrown away. As well as keeping the Victorian furniture which had belonged to her grandparents, she held on to old letters, household bills, recipes, wartime leaflets, newspaper cuttings and even old jars of home-made jam!

 

In 1911, when Miss Toward and her mother moved to 145 Buccleuch Street, even well-off tenement dwellers usually paid rent to a landlord for their homes rather than own them. Miss Agnes Toward rented her flat from the owner of the building, Dugald McCorkindale, who was a coal merchant. She kept all of her rent receipts, so we know how much rent she paid for her flat and that she paid it every three months.

 

The Tenement House is very compact, with four rooms – bedroom, parlour, kitchen and bathroom – opening off a square hallway. The National Trust for Scotland has restored the gas lighting which Miss Toward had replaced with electricity in 1960. Also, the rooms have been redecorated by copying samples of the original decoration wherever possible. Samples of the original papers can be seen in all the rooms except the bathroom.

 

The House is furnished with typical late Victorian furniture and a few older pieces such as the grandfather clock in the hallway, made in the 1790s, and the oak bureau in the parlour which dates from the 1750s.

 

One of the first things visitors notice when they step into the hallway of the house is the smell and hiss of the gas lights. They are not as bright as modern electric lights, and the House is decorated in dark colours which would have been very practical as they would not show the dirt caused by coal fires. Dominating the hallway is a portrait of a man thought to be Miss Toward’s grandfather, James Toward, who lived at Bonhill near Dumbarton and was an engraver of patterns for calico.

 

The parlour has a chenille table cover and white tablecloth and is set for afternoon tea. The rosewood piano is piled with sheet music containing traditional Scottish ballads and popular songs and dances of the Edwardian period. The chairs are covered with gleaming black horsehair. The white china bell handle by the fireplace, intended for summoning the maid, was installed in the 1890s when domestic service was cheap and many families in Buccleuch Street would have had a maidservant. The set-in bed behind a door in the corner was an economical way of providing extra sleeping space.

 

There is a typical Glasgow tenement kitchen. The black cast-iron range dominates one wall. Opposite sits the coalbunker and the fitted shelves with the china and cooking implements such as the ‘tattie champer’ for mashing potatoes and the spirtle for stirring porridge. Sitting beside the low sink at the window are the zinc washboard and a Victorian clothes wringer. Some samples of washing hang on the clothes pulley overhead. Tucked behind the door is the recess bed, high off the ground to provide useful storage space underneath and with long curtains which could be closed for privacy or to hide the bed during the day.

 

The bedroom has a traditional iron and brass bedstead, covered with a typical white cotton bed mat. A set of pretty china jugs and a basin sit on top of the marble-topped washstand. Among the items on the dressing table are glass perfume bottles and a small brass and shell watch holder. On top of the wardrobe are suitcases which Miss Toward would pack when going on holiday.

 

When this tenement was built in 1892, most tenement dwellers shared a toilet with their neighbours. Often this was on the stair landing, but it could even be outside in the back court. The 1892 Act, which was supposed to force landlords to provide indoor water closets for their tenants, was not entirely successful and some flats still had outside toilets as late as the early 1960s. Landlords who complied with the law passed the expense on to tenants in the form of higher rents.

 

When the Toward ladies came to live in Buccleuch Street in 1911, the bathroom would have been considered luxurious by the standards of the day. It has a deep enamelled cast iron bath with brass fittings, a marble-effect wash-basin with mixer taps and a toilet with a heavy wooden seat and china-handled pull chain. Other interesting features are: the gas meter which sits on a small shelf above the bath; the cold water tank for the bath in the flat below (the tank for this flat was in the flat upstairs!); the assortment of old medicine bottles on the shelf at the window; the brass can used for carrying hot water to the wash-stand in the bedroom; and the laundry basket hanging on a hook above the bath.

Celebrate winter with a festive Christmas Tree Banner!

 

This craft kit makes a 7-foot long banner with 12 festive cardstock trees and lots and lots of mix-and-match decorations. We’re talking decorative ribbons, buttons, rhinestones, sequins, and more! Each tree measures 3.75 x 5 inches and can be decorated to your heart’s desire.

 

Really, this craft kit is good for any age because I’ve included bigger decorations for itty bitty hands and smaller decorations for bigger hands with more advanced fine motor skills. This kit is not just for kids. I’m serious! I had a blast making the sample banner. And when I was done, I felt like a crafty genius. You, too, can be a crafty genius! And so can your kids! Be a crafty genius family! It will be awesome and everyone will want to be like you.

 

If you want some super quality time, the whole family can make it together. Just lay out all the decorations I’ve included, divvy up the trees, and have fun decorating. When everyone is done, string the trees on the ribbon and you have just given your little one(s) a childhood memory that you can bring out year after year.

 

If you have 2 or more kids decorating the tree, but they each want their own banner, just cut the banner ribbon in half (or thirds, etc.) to make mini-banners.

 

Or, make individual trees and pass them out to family members as Christmas gifts.

 

Oh! The options!

 

With this kit, all of the planning and organizing of the materials has already been done for you. Some materials may differ slightly, but all will coordinate nicely. Easy step-by-step instructions with color photographs and most materials are included.

 

*For this kit you will need to supply: Scissors.

 

*Each kit contains materials for 1 banner with 12 trees and comes in a super cute biodegradable box (shown in the last two pictures). The box is perfect for gift giving and will make any kid feel special!

 

*This kit is appropriate for ages 3 (with adult help) and up.

 

*Contains some parts (sequins, rhinestones, buttons, ribbon) that may not be suitable for your younger crafters, please be careful.

 

Kid Kits are perfect to give to caregivers or grandparents to do with your kids!

 

Kid Kits are also great for original birthday presents, party favors, and rainy day treats.

 

Make your life easier! I also make class and party sets!

 

smartbottomenterprises.blogspot.com/2010/11/christmas-tre...

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, most people in Glasgow lived in tenement flats. At that time they were not referred to as ‘flats’, but as ‘tenement houses’. The National Trust for Scotland’s Tenement House is on the first floor of an ordinary red sandstone tenement in Buccleuch Street, in Glasgow’s city centre. The Trust is preserving it as an important part of the nation’s heritage not only because it is typical of the flats so many Scots used to live in, but also because it has survived almost unchanged for over a century.

 

The tenement was an ideal way of housing a population which grew rapidly during Glasgow’s industrial expansion in the first half of the 19th century. It provided accommodation for many families on the minimum of valuable building land, and it could be adapted to suit the incomes of different social classes. In working-class areas, tenement flats had only two rooms (‘room and kitchen’ flats) or even only one room (the ‘single-end’). Three-quarters of all tenement flats in Glasgow were either room and kitchen houses or single-ends. Flats like the Tenement House, with two rooms and a kitchen and bathroom, were built for the slightly better-off; for even wealthier people, there were larger flats with four, five or even more rooms.

 

Glasgow tenements were built in white or red sandstone and usually had three or four floors, with two or more separate flats on each floor. The tenement at 145 Buccleuch Street is red sandstone and has four floors with two flats on each floor. The National Trust for Scotland now owns both ground floor flats as well as the Tenement House. One ground-floor flat is used as a reception area with exhibitions on tenement life and the history of the tenement in Glasgow. The other flat has an education room for school groups, and office and storage space. The rest of the building is private as there are still people living in their own homes. So, it is still a real tenement!

 

For over fifty years one of the first floor flats was the home of Miss Agnes Toward, who came to live there in 1911, along with her widowed mother Mrs Agnes Toward. Miss Toward’s life was in most respects very ordinary and it is just that which makes her story so interesting. She reminds us of people we have known: grandmothers, aunts, elderly neighbours. Her home offers a uniquely detailed insight into everyday life in the first half of the 20th century.

 

Miss Toward was born in 1886 in nearby Renfrew Street, and was the only surviving child of William and Agnes Toward. She had two younger sisters who died in infancy and her father, a commercial traveller in metals, died when she was only three years old. Agnes was brought up by her mother, who made a living by dressmaking and taking in lodgers.

 

For most of her life Miss Toward worked as a shorthand typist with a shipping firm, and retired when she was in her seventies. After her mother’s death in 1939, she lived in the flat on her own and made very few changes except for occasional redecorating and, in 1960, having electric light installed. She kept all sorts of things other people would have thrown away. As well as keeping the Victorian furniture which had belonged to her grandparents, she held on to old letters, household bills, recipes, wartime leaflets, newspaper cuttings and even old jars of home-made jam!

 

In 1911, when Miss Toward and her mother moved to 145 Buccleuch Street, even well-off tenement dwellers usually paid rent to a landlord for their homes rather than own them. Miss Agnes Toward rented her flat from the owner of the building, Dugald McCorkindale, who was a coal merchant. She kept all of her rent receipts, so we know how much rent she paid for her flat and that she paid it every three months.

 

The Tenement House is very compact, with four rooms – bedroom, parlour, kitchen and bathroom – opening off a square hallway. The National Trust for Scotland has restored the gas lighting which Miss Toward had replaced with electricity in 1960. Also, the rooms have been redecorated by copying samples of the original decoration wherever possible. Samples of the original papers can be seen in all the rooms except the bathroom.

 

The House is furnished with typical late Victorian furniture and a few older pieces such as the grandfather clock in the hallway, made in the 1790s, and the oak bureau in the parlour which dates from the 1750s.

 

One of the first things visitors notice when they step into the hallway of the house is the smell and hiss of the gas lights. They are not as bright as modern electric lights, and the House is decorated in dark colours which would have been very practical as they would not show the dirt caused by coal fires. Dominating the hallway is a portrait of a man thought to be Miss Toward’s grandfather, James Toward, who lived at Bonhill near Dumbarton and was an engraver of patterns for calico.

 

The parlour has a chenille table cover and white tablecloth and is set for afternoon tea. The rosewood piano is piled with sheet music containing traditional Scottish ballads and popular songs and dances of the Edwardian period. The chairs are covered with gleaming black horsehair. The white china bell handle by the fireplace, intended for summoning the maid, was installed in the 1890s when domestic service was cheap and many families in Buccleuch Street would have had a maidservant. The set-in bed behind a door in the corner was an economical way of providing extra sleeping space.

 

There is a typical Glasgow tenement kitchen. The black cast-iron range dominates one wall. Opposite sits the coalbunker and the fitted shelves with the china and cooking implements such as the ‘tattie champer’ for mashing potatoes and the spirtle for stirring porridge. Sitting beside the low sink at the window are the zinc washboard and a Victorian clothes wringer. Some samples of washing hang on the clothes pulley overhead. Tucked behind the door is the recess bed, high off the ground to provide useful storage space underneath and with long curtains which could be closed for privacy or to hide the bed during the day.

 

The bedroom has a traditional iron and brass bedstead, covered with a typical white cotton bed mat. A set of pretty china jugs and a basin sit on top of the marble-topped washstand. Among the items on the dressing table are glass perfume bottles and a small brass and shell watch holder. On top of the wardrobe are suitcases which Miss Toward would pack when going on holiday.

 

When this tenement was built in 1892, most tenement dwellers shared a toilet with their neighbours. Often this was on the stair landing, but it could even be outside in the back court. The 1892 Act, which was supposed to force landlords to provide indoor water closets for their tenants, was not entirely successful and some flats still had outside toilets as late as the early 1960s. Landlords who complied with the law passed the expense on to tenants in the form of higher rents.

 

When the Toward ladies came to live in Buccleuch Street in 1911, the bathroom would have been considered luxurious by the standards of the day. It has a deep enamelled cast iron bath with brass fittings, a marble-effect wash-basin with mixer taps and a toilet with a heavy wooden seat and china-handled pull chain. Other interesting features are: the gas meter which sits on a small shelf above the bath; the cold water tank for the bath in the flat below (the tank for this flat was in the flat upstairs!); the assortment of old medicine bottles on the shelf at the window; the brass can used for carrying hot water to the wash-stand in the bedroom; and the laundry basket hanging on a hook above the bath.

Ok, it's has been a year tomorrow since I joined Flickr. 256 photos. 3368 hits that's about 1 photo getting a little more than 12 hits each. Or it's 9 people a day. But this isn't about the numbers. My hard drive has over 18GB taken from June last year to today, I don't put up many family pictures. I don't do the nudes or personal exploitation type shots that draw huge views and tons of comments. Shots of Gracie and George in snow actually get to the explore page maybe 4 or 5 pages deep. Here's the thing, I've made a lot of web friends. And before I go any further... I'd like to say this is nerve wracking to expose my thoughts like this. Almost worse than putting up a photo of me.

 

What have I learned as I joined flickr to mentally challenge myself.

 

Number 1... There's dog owners out the wazoo out there.

 

There's a pyr owner in Florida, Peggy. When I first saw your shots of Henry and felt like I was looking at my own Gracie I felt I had to do this. Your photos made me feel I needed to show my photos. And it started with some simple Grace and George shots.

 

Then there's the Corgi people from Japan, Australia, Finland. You name it. And they are as exuberant as the breed.

 

And the other dog breeds! Chris Rushton and Andy Sheridan... these guys have a bunch of gorgeous Newfys. (By the way, guys, turn of the last century, early 1900's, my grandparents came from Birmingham area, Sutton Coldfield. Know any Pooles? Might be relatives. Granddad had 13 siblings.)

 

It's been great to trade praise, questions, comments, etc. on everyone's dog's personalities.

 

And over the year it's been very interesting to look at the world through your photos and see what you do, how you live, where you eat or what you drive. Sounds very stalker-like, but realise that worldwide, everyone's world is very different. From the decorations on the wall of their home to the composition of the same wall to the view out the window. And we're all bound by an interest in photography, the web and our hobbies shown within this site.

 

And this is somewhat a random thought, I speak English, a smattering of French from high school. I'm stunned at the quality and quantity of english speaking people on this site. A comment to Agnieszka (Poland) is answered in perfect English. A note to Anne K (caelusfulminum) (Berlin), again answered in perfect English. If it were the other way around and I were sending out polish responses, well, it'd be that web translator thing doing the work... I'm impressed.

 

But have I challenged myself? I wish I wish I wish.

 

I wish I had done more of shots like the various cloning photos of _rebekka or Miss Aniela. (Did one last night for a goof!) Great concepts, elaborate set ups, massive photoshopping. But one thing I've realized in the 28 years of being an art director is that I'm better off in back of the photographer who is in back of the camera whilst I am pointing at the subject to be shot. I shouldn't be allowed to have a camera in my hands... ok, wait I'm better than that. Plus I presently spend a giant part of my life in photoshop. No need to go into that.

 

I wish I had the sense of color of rebeccamissing, lyrical, 10thAvenue, caelusfulminum, and stoneth (wait, his stuff is all black and white... but the texture!) I wish I had the "go out and wander around in the big city" ability of Gillian Leigh. (I really worry about her getting mugged.) The ability to wander around swamps at the crack of dawn or the moment of sunset that seems to be the skill of 10thAvenue (don't you sleep?).

 

And I wish I had the focus of Jean (Digital Gurl) or Lori Tingey (Domain Barnyard). Or the protraits of Jamie (dockmaster) Stephanie Deissner (*Stephanie) These ladies don't miss a sharp shot for anything.

 

I'm missing humor. Here's the best. Jennifer Hawke, cute and funny. When I first wandered onto her photostream, she had a triplicate of various expressions that made me laugh-out-loud! A great set of crazy personal shots with personality. A recent caption about the heat of Nevada, "holymothacrap" really sums up an ability to be expressive without a long winded caption.

 

And then on the opposite of short captions, there's a woman named NcNeney in Victoria, BC that writes opus's under simple shots of herself or scenic Canada. I'll see a photo pop up and want to comment and it's like "wait for it.. wait... wait, she hasn't finished it yet, wait" and there'll be several comments and then boom, the opus loads and some fasinating piece about her childhood (or I guess, now she's 40, the demise of said childhood.) Mary Anne, this caption's for you. I once captioned all my photos the same way till I realized I really should say something about why I took the shot or what life means to me. (And damn, you are such a great writer... when's the novel coming out?)

 

And now that I've said all this, I hope I haven't missed anyone, maligned, or overstated my welcome into your lives. The year ahead... more play, maybe less just dogs for dogs sake, and some truely profound photos... I hope.

 

Thanks all!

  

image above: Victorian funeral, Bristol. (location unknown) See Comments below.

 

Today’s society has moved away from that sort of funeral pomp. Part of the reason for this is that most people have an aversion to discussing death, cemeteries and corpses, when in fact, funerals and mourning occur every day. Cremations are becoming more popular today due to the lack of burial space. However, during the Victorian Era (characterized as the period of Queen Victoria’s reign over Great Britain and Ireland from 1837 to 1901) no expense was spared when arranging a proper burial.

 

Many lower class persons planned ahead and saved money for their children’s funerals because the mortality rate was so high. They wanted to ensure that if their children did not survive, they would still be able to have a grand funeral for them. By saving money for funerals, they often deprived their families of the necessary comforts of living.

 

A Victorian funeral procession was an extraordinary sight. It was led by various foot attendants: pall bearers who carried batons, feathermen, pages and mutes who dressed in gowns and carried wands. Because these men often had to stand out in the cold, they were given lots of gin to drink. This often resulted in disorderly conduct. As you can imagine, this would greatly upset the family of the deceased because these men had been hired to conduct themselves in a solemn manner.

 

The first coach in the procession was the hearse. It was black, with glass sides, and had lots of silver and gold decoration. A huge canopy of black ostrich feathers covered the hearse. Inside lay the coffin. It was shiny and polished, and had moldings, expensive metal handles and inscribed plates. Sometimes the coffin was covered with black, purple or dark green cloth that was attached to it with brass, silver or gilt-headed nails. The hearse was also filled with flowers. Six black horses pulled the hearse, and the horses had black ostrich feather plumes on their heads.

 

The rest of the coaches followed behind the hearse. Each contained mourners, and usually the blinds were drawn. The men wore full mourning suits with crape bands around their top hats. The women wore black gowns made of crape, with black veils and black gloves. They held black-edged handkerchiefs to their eyes. Mourning fans made of black ostrich feathers were carried by their tortoiseshell handles. Jewelry made of jet was worn.

 

The procession made its way at walking pace from the house of the deceased along main roads leading out of town to the cemetery. Sometimes a detour was made through important areas in order to achieve a maximum display. Once the procession was out of town, everyone on foot climbed on to the coaches, and the procession was led at a brisk trot. Upon arrival at the cemetery gates, the foot attendants climbed down from the coaches, and the procession once again continued at walking pace.

 

The procession stopped at a chapel in the center of the cemetery. The mourners remained dignified and calm as they entered the chapel. The coffin was carried in and laid on a bier. At the end of the funeral service, the coffin was either lowered through the floor into catacombs, or the ceremony ended outside at the place of burial. If indeed the ceremony did end up at the actual burial site, the women would leave and only the men would remain to witness the actual interment.

 

A feast was held at the home of the deceased; sometimes after the funeral, but sometimes before the funeral with the body being present. Ham, cider, ale, pies and cakes were the usual fare. Not only the immediate family would be present, but all the distant relatives too. Cards were sent out to friends, business associates and acquaintances inviting them to the funeral.

 

Mourning cards were another tradition. These were supplied by the undertaker. They were printed in black and silver on white, and were embossed with traditional symbols of grief such as an inverted torch, a weeping willow, a shrouded urn or kneeling female mourners. These cards were mounted on ornamental memorial-card mounts. They were intended as reminders of the dead so that the recipient would be sure to offer prayers for the deceased. The card contained the name and age of the dead person as well as the date and place of burial.

 

Here are examples of what was included when arranging either a cheap or an expensive funeral with an undertaker:

 

Funeral costing £5 – Hearse, with one horse; mourning coach, with one horse; stout elm coffin, covered with fine black, plate of inscription, lid ornaments, and three pairs of handles, mattress, pillow, and a pair of side sheets; use of velvet pall, mourners’ fittings, coachmen with hat-bands and gloves; bearers; attendant with silk hat-band.

 

Funeral costing £53 – Hearse and four horses, two mourning coaches with fours, twenty-three plumes of rich ostrich feathers, complete velvet covering for carriages and horses, and an esquire’s plume of best feathers; strong elm shell, with tufted mattress, lined and ruffled with superfine cambric, and pillow; full worked glazed cambric winding-sheet, stout outside lead coffin, with inscription plate and solder complete; one-and-a-half-inch oak case, covered with black or crimson velvet, set with three rows round, and lid paneled with best brass nails; stout brass plate of inscription, richly engraved; four pairs of best brass handles and grips, lid ornaments to correspond; use of silk velvet pall; two mutes with gowns, silk hat-bands and gloves; fourteen men as pages, feathermen, and coachmen, with truncheons and wands, silk hat-bands; use of mourners; fittings; and attendant with silk hat-band.

 

Many of Britain’s nineteenth century cemeteries were modeled after the famous Pere-la-Chaise cemetery in Paris. Until this time, Britain had only small churchyards. The population was increasing, and these churchyards became so full that partially-rotted corpses were disinterred to make way for new ones. It was common to visit a graveyard and see graves that had been dug up with bones strewn about. The Victorians wanted large, new cemeteries established outside the cities to provide more hygienic and dignified resting places for their deceased. These cemeteries were designed to be beautiful places where visitors could stroll down long, shaded walks.

 

There were quite a wide variety of grave monuments to be found in Victorian cemeteries. Traditional urns, broken columns, busts of the deceased and angels could be found alongside Egyptian-style obelisks and pyramids. Chaste classical tombstones lay among wild Gothic fantasies. Catacombs were laid out below cemetery chapels, while large, family mausoleums rose above them. The poor, however, were consigned to common graves that usually lay four deep.

 

After burial, the period of mourning depended upon a person’s relation to the deceased. Mourning for a spouse, parent or child was to last 12 months. For grandparents, brothers or sisters six months was sufficient, and for uncles and aunts it was only two months. During this period a widow was required to dress completely in black crape for the entire year, and in most other instances, the relative wore black crape for approximately 2/3 of the mourning period. After the allotted time, black silk was allowed to be worn in place of crape for the remainder of the mourning period. Mourning dress is actually associated with a deeply rooted fear of the dead returning. When veiled and cloaked in black, it was thought that the living were invisible to the dead.

 

The Victorians were the last society to truly celebrate death, as did the ancient Egyptians and other cultures before them. Many Victorian cemeteries have now been destroyed to make way for parks or public housing projects. Grave monuments are not usually as large or as ornate as they once were. A growing number of people today have little or no contact with actual corpses due to the prevalence of cremation. Unfortunately, in trying to play down the role of death in today’s society, less value is placed upon life.

 

www.flickr.com/photos/brizzlebornandbred/6384870541/

Project 365.

 

This old cake plate from my grandparents' house got to serve as a decoration and a place to keep my necklaces and bracelets instead of just collection dust in a cupboard. I really like it!

... here second day of Christmas - 26 December is usually for visiting...family or friends...

but real family holiday is Xmas Eve - evening dinner with 12 dishes, lol

 

photo taken with my phone in a supermatket, just before Xmas,

added stars, bokeh light, frame...greetings, gifts...Santa's hat.

 

Photograph (C) copyright 2009 Ivan Safyan Abrams. All rights reserved.

 

This gentleman, seen here accompanied by his granddaughter, fought heroically in the Soviet Red Army in the Great Patriotic War. His medals for heroism, and for service in battles, are on the right side of his jacket. The medals on the left side are for participation in previous commemorative events.

 

The cloak and cap worn by the young women are typical of those in use during the Great Patriotic War. Many Soviet women served at the front, in combat and in all other roles. Approximately 20,000,000 Soviet citizens and soldiers died during the war; it's unusual to find anywhere in Russia and in the former Soviet republics a family that didn't suffer a loss. Even though my grandparents on both sides emigrated to the US in the early 20th century, from lands that later became part of the USSR, our family still lost cousins, in what is now Ukraine, who were Soviet citizens murdered by the fascists.

 

War is horrible, and this man's decorations demonstrate that he has been through hell, and thankfully, survived.

Bedsteforældredag med juleforberedelser m.m. i Nr Sundby DUS (SFO)

Visual stories about children, birthdays and other celebrations of life

I've decided to do a series of photo stories in which my characters talk about their favourite plushie friends. These are going to be in the form of first-person narratives told from each character's point of view. Here is the first one.

 

The Teddy Bear Diaries: Reid & Vimy

 

I got Vimy when I was two. I don't actually remember getting him but, then again, I don't imagine many people remember much about their second birthday, do they? He was given to me by my Nan and Grampy, whose names are Sadie and John McCrae. Yeah, I know. If you're Canadian, you're probably going to be shaking your head when I tell you that not only is Grampy's name John McCrae, but he was in the Armed Forces, too. He's Colonel John McCrae, retired. That's important to this story.

 

Vimy wasn't called that when I first got him. Being two years old and not the sharpest tack in the box, I wasn't much into naming stuff. He was just 'Bear' for several years. That was fine because I was the only kid in the house at the time and he was the only teddy bear. Even though he didn't have a name, there was never any worry about being confused as to which bear someone might be referring to.

 

According to my mother, my bear went everywhere with me. She said I couldn't fall asleep without him and, apparently, I cried the first time Mum put him in the washing machine because I thought he would drown. Mum says it took her ages to convince me that I couldn't bring him with me to school when I started kindergarten. I think I might've taken him to school for show-and-tell once, though.

 

My parents both worked and so I got off the bus at Nan and Grampy's house every day after school. I'd have supper there, and then my parents would come and get me around six o'clock. One of my favourite things about going to my grandparents' house was sitting in the living room with Grampy after supper and listening to his military stories. Sometimes we'd play this game where he was my commanding officer and I would call him Colonel or Sir. I think he liked that. From the age of six, I knew I was going to be a soldier when I grew up, just like him.

 

Sometime around Remembrance Day in the year I turned six, I asked Grampy why all the grown-ups were wearing red flowers on their coats. He explained to me about poppies and what they stand for. I'm not sure how much of it I really understood at the time, but I remember I was fascinated as I listened to him talk about the important battles Canadian soldiers had fought in places like Normandy, Dieppe, Passchendaele and Vimy Ridge.

 

It was the name “Vimy” that stuck in my head. I don't know why. At six years old I couldn't possibly have fully understood its significance. I guess maybe I just liked the way it sounded when I said it out loud.

 

That night when I got home, I looked at my bear sitting on my bed. I studied him for a long time and, in my childish mind, I imagined him staring back at me. After a while, I picked him up and held him so his face was level with mine.

 

“Your name is Vimy,” I said.

 

The next day, I told my grandfather what had happened between me and my bear. Grampy smiled. He said Vimy was a fine name for my bear, and he told me that he was proud of me.

 

When I got older, I grew out of the need to carry Vimy practically everywhere I went, but I never wanted to give him up completely. Long after all my other toys were gone, Vimy was still there. For the most part, he just stayed on my bed or on top of the bookshelf in my room. My best friend, Nathan, made fun of me a little about still having a teddy bear when I was a teenager, and I made fun of him a little about still having his collection of dinosaur toys, but neither of us meant anything with our teasing. I think it was just our way of acknowledging that we both understood neither of us were quite ready to grow up yet. I'm pretty sure my other good friends, Sam, Ruby and Patrick, knew about Vimy too. To their credit, none of them ever said anything about my hanging onto him. I guess they had some childhood treasures of their own.

 

I enlisted when I was eighteen. Before I left for basic training, I wrapped Vimy carefully in a blanket, tucked him into a boot box, and put it on the top shelf of my bedroom closet. I told my mother not to throw out anything in boxes that I'd labelled important. She promised she wouldn't.

 

I thought about Vimy sometimes while I was in basic, but mostly I was too busy concentrating on getting through my training in one piece to dwell on my bear or anything else about home for too long. Gradually, it occurred to me that I was thinking about childhood things less and less, and I realized that I was growing up – really growing up – and that maybe I'd finally outgrown my furry companion. In some ways that made me sad, but mostly I was proud of myself for becoming responsible and mature. I had a future to look forward to, and I told myself it was okay to leave behind some things from the past.

 

Vimy stayed in his box in the closet until my first deployment to Afghanistan. Every day, my family watched the news and heard about all the things that were going on over there. They knew how dangerous it was and, although they never let on how worried they were, I could sense it in their voices every time I got a chance to talk with them.

 

Nan was the most concerned of all, I think because she already knew what it was like to love a soldier who was away on a mission. Sometime while I was away on that first tour, Nan went over to my parents' house and asked my mother to get Vimy out of storage. She tied a yellow ribbon on him, symbolic of a wish for a soldier's safe return. When I made it back home, I discovered Vimy waiting for me on my bed in my old room. That yellow ribbon...I really didn't have to ask who'd done that. I thanked Nan for it. She didn't question how I knew. She just hugged me as hard as she could and cried.

 

I've never put Vimy away again, and I've never taken that yellow ribbon off him.

 

My second tour in Afghanistan was when my life changed forever. Believe me, you don't know fear until you come face to face with your own death and then realize there are things far worse than dying. That time, when I made it back to Canada, I didn't walk into my parents' house. I didn't walk anywhere, and I never will again. My first stop on home soil was a hospital where I spent nearly two months, and then a rehabilitation hospital where I spent several more.

 

My family came to see me as soon as they could. I was so out of it from the travelling and the stress and all the medications the doctors were giving me that I don't remember much about the first week or so in that hospital, but my mother told me later that I'd asked her repeatedly where Vimy was. I don't remember who brought him to me. One day, I woke up and he was there in the crook of my arm. I kept him with me the entire time I was hospitalized, and no one ever challenged the fact that a man in his twenties had this ragged old teddy bear. One of the nurses put a child-sized hospital bracelet on him. It had his name on it.

 

These days, Vimy hangs out in my bedroom, just like old times. Mostly he's part of the decoration, but sometimes when things aren't going right I still like to hold him and tell him about it. Vimy knows all my secrets. He knows what I'm afraid of and he's there when I wake up from nightmares.

 

That's the thing about teddy bears, isn't it? They may be just toys, but they engage the imagination and they make even the worst days more...bearable. In the last couple of years, I've revised the opinion I had when I was in basic training. I may be grown up now, but in my heart I know that I'll never really outgrow my teddy bear.

Visual stories about children, birthdays and other celebrations of life

In the 19th and early 20th centuries, most people in Glasgow lived in tenement flats. At that time they were not referred to as ‘flats’, but as ‘tenement houses’. The National Trust for Scotland’s Tenement House is on the first floor of an ordinary red sandstone tenement in Buccleuch Street, in Glasgow’s city centre. The Trust is preserving it as an important part of the nation’s heritage not only because it is typical of the flats so many Scots used to live in, but also because it has survived almost unchanged for over a century.

 

The tenement was an ideal way of housing a population which grew rapidly during Glasgow’s industrial expansion in the first half of the 19th century. It provided accommodation for many families on the minimum of valuable building land, and it could be adapted to suit the incomes of different social classes. In working-class areas, tenement flats had only two rooms (‘room and kitchen’ flats) or even only one room (the ‘single-end’). Three-quarters of all tenement flats in Glasgow were either room and kitchen houses or single-ends. Flats like the Tenement House, with two rooms and a kitchen and bathroom, were built for the slightly better-off; for even wealthier people, there were larger flats with four, five or even more rooms.

 

Glasgow tenements were built in white or red sandstone and usually had three or four floors, with two or more separate flats on each floor. The tenement at 145 Buccleuch Street is red sandstone and has four floors with two flats on each floor. The National Trust for Scotland now owns both ground floor flats as well as the Tenement House. One ground-floor flat is used as a reception area with exhibitions on tenement life and the history of the tenement in Glasgow. The other flat has an education room for school groups, and office and storage space. The rest of the building is private as there are still people living in their own homes. So, it is still a real tenement!

 

For over fifty years one of the first floor flats was the home of Miss Agnes Toward, who came to live there in 1911, along with her widowed mother Mrs Agnes Toward. Miss Toward’s life was in most respects very ordinary and it is just that which makes her story so interesting. She reminds us of people we have known: grandmothers, aunts, elderly neighbours. Her home offers a uniquely detailed insight into everyday life in the first half of the 20th century.

 

Miss Toward was born in 1886 in nearby Renfrew Street, and was the only surviving child of William and Agnes Toward. She had two younger sisters who died in infancy and her father, a commercial traveller in metals, died when she was only three years old. Agnes was brought up by her mother, who made a living by dressmaking and taking in lodgers.

 

For most of her life Miss Toward worked as a shorthand typist with a shipping firm, and retired when she was in her seventies. After her mother’s death in 1939, she lived in the flat on her own and made very few changes except for occasional redecorating and, in 1960, having electric light installed. She kept all sorts of things other people would have thrown away. As well as keeping the Victorian furniture which had belonged to her grandparents, she held on to old letters, household bills, recipes, wartime leaflets, newspaper cuttings and even old jars of home-made jam!

 

In 1911, when Miss Toward and her mother moved to 145 Buccleuch Street, even well-off tenement dwellers usually paid rent to a landlord for their homes rather than own them. Miss Agnes Toward rented her flat from the owner of the building, Dugald McCorkindale, who was a coal merchant. She kept all of her rent receipts, so we know how much rent she paid for her flat and that she paid it every three months.

 

The Tenement House is very compact, with four rooms – bedroom, parlour, kitchen and bathroom – opening off a square hallway. The National Trust for Scotland has restored the gas lighting which Miss Toward had replaced with electricity in 1960. Also, the rooms have been redecorated by copying samples of the original decoration wherever possible. Samples of the original papers can be seen in all the rooms except the bathroom.

 

The House is furnished with typical late Victorian furniture and a few older pieces such as the grandfather clock in the hallway, made in the 1790s, and the oak bureau in the parlour which dates from the 1750s.

 

One of the first things visitors notice when they step into the hallway of the house is the smell and hiss of the gas lights. They are not as bright as modern electric lights, and the House is decorated in dark colours which would have been very practical as they would not show the dirt caused by coal fires. Dominating the hallway is a portrait of a man thought to be Miss Toward’s grandfather, James Toward, who lived at Bonhill near Dumbarton and was an engraver of patterns for calico.

 

The parlour has a chenille table cover and white tablecloth and is set for afternoon tea. The rosewood piano is piled with sheet music containing traditional Scottish ballads and popular songs and dances of the Edwardian period. The chairs are covered with gleaming black horsehair. The white china bell handle by the fireplace, intended for summoning the maid, was installed in the 1890s when domestic service was cheap and many families in Buccleuch Street would have had a maidservant. The set-in bed behind a door in the corner was an economical way of providing extra sleeping space.

 

There is a typical Glasgow tenement kitchen. The black cast-iron range dominates one wall. Opposite sits the coalbunker and the fitted shelves with the china and cooking implements such as the ‘tattie champer’ for mashing potatoes and the spirtle for stirring porridge. Sitting beside the low sink at the window are the zinc washboard and a Victorian clothes wringer. Some samples of washing hang on the clothes pulley overhead. Tucked behind the door is the recess bed, high off the ground to provide useful storage space underneath and with long curtains which could be closed for privacy or to hide the bed during the day.

 

The bedroom has a traditional iron and brass bedstead, covered with a typical white cotton bed mat. A set of pretty china jugs and a basin sit on top of the marble-topped washstand. Among the items on the dressing table are glass perfume bottles and a small brass and shell watch holder. On top of the wardrobe are suitcases which Miss Toward would pack when going on holiday.

 

When this tenement was built in 1892, most tenement dwellers shared a toilet with their neighbours. Often this was on the stair landing, but it could even be outside in the back court. The 1892 Act, which was supposed to force landlords to provide indoor water closets for their tenants, was not entirely successful and some flats still had outside toilets as late as the early 1960s. Landlords who complied with the law passed the expense on to tenants in the form of higher rents.

 

When the Toward ladies came to live in Buccleuch Street in 1911, the bathroom would have been considered luxurious by the standards of the day. It has a deep enamelled cast iron bath with brass fittings, a marble-effect wash-basin with mixer taps and a toilet with a heavy wooden seat and china-handled pull chain. Other interesting features are: the gas meter which sits on a small shelf above the bath; the cold water tank for the bath in the flat below (the tank for this flat was in the flat upstairs!); the assortment of old medicine bottles on the shelf at the window; the brass can used for carrying hot water to the wash-stand in the bedroom; and the laundry basket hanging on a hook above the bath.

 

The National Trust of Scotland Website has details of viewing times and charges

Bedsteforældredag med juleforberedelser m.m. i Nr Sundby DUS (SFO) - næste dag

Visual stories about children, birthdays and other celebrations of life

At my great-aunt and uncle's apartment on 465 Elton Street in Brooklyn. Judging by some other photos, this appears to have been taken the same day as my grandparents' wedding.

The title of this one is, "Waiting Until the Coast is Clear." I finally broke down and used off camera flash today. I am so looking forward to the weekend when sunny days are predicted!

 

I'm very fortunate that I have many of the Christmas decorations that I grew up with, whether from my own house or that of my grandparents. When I saw the challenge topic, all the possibilities ran through my head. Then, I remembered Santa. I believe that Santa used to belong to my great-uncle. I think the story goes that he was a premium for opening a Christmas savings account, back when banks actually gave you gifts for doing business with them, rather than charging outrageous fees.

 

Santa was an integral part of my childhood. I used to even sleep with him during the days before Christmas. As I remembered Santa, a wave of panic came over me because I knew that I didn't have him. So I immediately called my mom who confirmed that Santa was safe and sound with their Christmas decorations. He's on loan to me just for today so that I could take this photo. I think that he kind of looks like the Coca Cola Santa, doesn't he?

 

For Our Daily Challenge: Memory from Your Childhood

One day in 1964, my mom left work on her lunch break and went to Market Street in Philly and bought a collection of pixie knee hugger dolls for Christmas decorations. They were made in Japan and were decked out in sparkly outfits and hats. She still lived at home with my grandparents then and she began hanging them from the chandelier at Christmastime. When she and my dad got married, she took the pixies with her and hung them from the chandelier in her new home, and then years later, when we moved from Philly to a new house, they followed us there, too. They have been dancing from the chandelier for over 40 years- and for every Christmas of my life!

 

Now as an adult, I wanted to recreate some of the memories of my childhood so I tracked down these cuties on Ebay for the past 3 years since you can't get them new anywhere. This year, my collection is finally complete. I now have a pixie party all of my own!

  

Bedsteforældredag med juleforberedelser m.m. i Nr Sundby DUS (SFO) - næste dag

Hard to believe Christmas has come and gone again so quickly.The wooden angels in this photo are very old. We have some old photos in an album that show them on a tree lit by candles back in the day!

Visual stories about children, birthdays and other celebrations of life

Another day on the road. Another day with family. Julia stayed behind to play with her grandparents and cousin. I came home to pack up the holiday trimmings.

 

As I cleaned, I celebrated with a little Christmas cheer.

 

When Julia came in, she noticed the decorations were gone. "But I wanted to help... It was one of those things on my bucket list to put away Christmas decorations."

 

I never know what that girl is going to say.

Bedsteforældredag med juleforberedelser m.m. i Nr Sundby DUS (SFO)

Today, I photographed for my fiancee's grandparents 50th wedding anniversary party. Handling the lighting situations was not an easy task. It was a learning experience and hopefully I improve at the next event I shoot. At the end of the day, I'll always be a details person. If you've been following my feed, I just love a good simple detail shot. So here ya go...

 

Reggie Ballesteros Photography:

Website | Facebook | Society6

Celebrate Spring with a pretty Easter Egg Banner. The banner ribbon is 6 feet long and each egg measures 3.5 x 5 inches.

 

This kit is seriously awesome, and I’ll tell you why: There are 8 cardstock eggs and a ton of supplies. That means 1 child (or 2 or 3 or up to 8) can get involved making the banner.

 

The kit is good for any age because I’ve included big decorations for itty bitty hands and smaller decorations for bigger hands with more advanced fine motor skills. It’s fun for adults, too!

 

If you want some super quality time, the whole family can make it together. Just lay out all the decorations I’ve included, divvy up the eggs, and have a blast decorating. When everyone is done, string up the eggs on the ribbon and you have just given your little one(s) a childhood memory that you can bring out year after year.

 

If you have 2 or more kids decorating the eggs, but they each want their own banner, just cut the banner ribbon in half (or thirds, etc.) to make mini-banners.

 

With this kit, all of the planning and organizing of the materials has already been done for you. Some materials may differ slightly, but all will coordinate nicely. Easy step-by-step instructions with color photographs and most materials are included.

 

*For this kit you will need to supply: scissors.

 

*Each kit contains materials for 1 banner and comes in a super cute reusable plastic box (shown in the last two pictures). The box is perfect for gift giving and will make any kid feel special!

 

*This kit is appropriate for ages 3 (with adult help) and up.

 

*Contains some parts (sequins, ribbon) that may not be suitable for your younger crafters, please be careful.

 

Kid Kits are perfect to give to caregivers or grandparents to do with your kids!

 

Kid Kits are also great for original birthday presents, party favors, and rainy day treats.

 

Make your life easier! I also make class and party sets!

  

1.The fragrance of evergreens. They make me heady;

 

2.Listening to and singing Christmas Carols… the real ones… in Latin or English, not the Christmas “songs”;

 

3.Listening to my sister play Christmas carols on the piano and singing (She knows all the words.) while all my kitty babies sit behind her in a circle mesmerized;

 

4.Being reunited with all our Christmas ornaments which hold so much inside of them…our parents and grandparents, memories, laughter, fun, surprise, love;

 

5.Going out at night, starting a few days before Christmas Eve, looking up at the sky, and imagining that I can see the Star of Bethlehem. It always makes me cry, but in a good way;

 

6.Giving presents and watching the delight when they are opened;

 

7.Always buying more presents for my sister than she buys me. It is not a competition, but I love to see her blush, her delight, and hear her squeals of happiness;

 

8.Writing out Christmas cards by hand with a note or letter, signing my name myself, and addressing the envelope also by hand…nothing computerized and no preprinted “signatures” or those generic recap letters of what friends and people did the during the year. I never read them;

 

9.Receiving Christmas cards by mail, especially the ones with a handwritten note and signature and no generic recap letter of the past year;

 

10.Looking out at night and seeing the trunks of my trees, wrapped in white lights. The look so festive, bright, sparkling, and so magical;

 

11.Shopping for toys and gifts for children and teens for a charity organization, Elf Louise, picking out the wrapping paper to include, and bringing it all to the hectic and bustling drop off center filled with elves;

 

12.Turning the Christmas tree lights on the first time and feeling the same excitement and magic II felt as a child;

 

13.Using all the beautiful crocheted linens that my late beloved Grandmother made and using our late oh-so-loved Mom’s “special” Christmas decorations;

 

14.Having friends over and laughing and talking loudly and over one another, getting silly , and tears running down our cheeks;

 

15.Reminiscing with my sister about all the Christmas past when our loved ones were alive and telling our kitty babies stories about them all again; and

 

16.Finding, while unwrapping all the ornaments, “my” special purple glass ball ornament with a Teddy Bear etched on it in silver glitter.

 

Visual stories about children, birthdays and other celebrations of life

MRS. OBAMA: Hello, everyone! I get to start you all off. I want to begin by thanking General Anderson for that introduction, but more importantly for his leadership here at Fort Bragg. I can’t tell you what a pleasure and an honor it is to be back here. I have so many wonderful memories of this place.

 

A couple of years ago, I came here on my very first official trip as First Lady. And I spent some -- a great time with some of the amazing military spouses, and I visited again this summer to help to put on the finishing touches on an amazing new home for a veteran and her family. So when I heard that I had the opportunity to come back and to be a part of welcoming you all home, to say I was excited was an understatement.

 

And I have to tell you that when I look out at this crowd, I am simply overwhelmed. I am overwhelmed and proud, because I know the level of strength and commitment that you all display every single day. Whenever this country calls, you all are the ones who answer, no matter the circumstance, no matter the danger, no matter the sacrifice.

 

And I know that you do this not just as soldiers, not just as patriots, but as fathers and mothers, as brothers and sisters, as sons and daughters. And I know that while your children and your spouses and your parents and siblings might not wear uniforms, they serve right alongside you.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah! (Applause.)

 

MRS. OBAMA: I know that your sacrifice is their sacrifice, too. So when I think of all that you do and all that your families do, I am so proud and so grateful. But more importantly, I’m inspired. But like so many Americans, I never feel like I can fully convey just how thankful I am, because words just don’t seem to be enough.

 

And that’s why I have been working so hard, along with Jill Biden, on a campaign that we call Joining Forces. It’s a campaign that we hope goes beyond words. It’s a campaign that is about action. It’s about rallying all Americans to give you the honor, the appreciation and the support that you have all earned. And I don’t have to tell you that this hasn’t been a difficult campaign. We haven’t had to do much convincing because American have been lining up to show their appreciation for you and your families in very concrete and meaningful ways.

 

Businesses are hiring tens of thousands of veterans and military spouses. Schools all across the country and PTAs are reaching out to our military children. And individuals are serving their neighbors and their communities all over this country in your honor.

 

So I want you to know that this nation’s support doesn’t end as this war ends. Not by a long shot. We’re going to keep on doing this. We have so much more work to do. We’re going to keep finding new ways to serve all of you as well as you have served us. And the man leading the way is standing right here. (Applause.) He is fighting for you and your families every single day. He’s helped more than half a million veterans and military family members go to college through the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill. (Applause.)

 

He’s taken unprecedented steps to improve mental health care. He’s cut taxes for businesses that hire a veteran or a wounded warrior. And he has kept his promise to responsibly bring you home from Iraq.

 

So please join me in welcoming someone who’s your strongest advocate, someone who shows his support for our military not only in words, but in deeds, my husband, our President, and your Commander-in-Chief, Barack Obama. (Applause.)

 

THE PRESIDENT: Hello, everybody! (Applause.) Hello, Fort Bragg! All the way!

 

AUDIENCE: Airborne!

 

THE PRESIDENT: Now, I’m sure you realize why I don’t like following Michelle Obama. (Laughter.) She’s pretty good. And it is true, I am a little biased, but let me just say it: Michelle, you are a remarkable First Lady. You are a great advocate for military families. (Applause.) And you’re cute. (Applause.) I’m just saying -- gentlemen, that’s your goal: to marry up. (Laughter.) Punch above your weight.

 

Fort Bragg, we’re here to mark a historic moment in the life of our country and our military. For nearly nine years, our nation has been at war in Iraq. And you -- the incredible men and women of Fort Bragg -- have been there every step of the way, serving with honor, sacrificing greatly, from the first waves of the invasion to some of the last troops to come home. So, as your Commander-in-Chief, and on behalf of a grateful nation, I’m proud to finally say these two words, and I know your families agree: Welcome home! (Applause.) Welcome home. Welcome home. (Applause.) Welcome home.

 

It is great to be here at Fort Bragg -- home of the Airborne and Special Operations Forces. I want to thank General Anderson and all your outstanding leaders for welcoming us here today, including General Dave Rodriguez, General John Mulholland. And I want to give a shout-out to your outstanding senior enlisted leaders, including Command Sergeant Major Roger Howard, Darrin Bohn, Parry Baer. And give a big round of applause to the Ground Forces Band. (Applause.)

 

We’ve got a lot of folks in the house today. We’ve got the 18th Airborne Corps -- the Sky Dragons. (Applause.) We’ve got the legendary, All-American 82nd Airborne Division. (Applause.) We’ve got America’s quiet professionals -- our Special Operations Forces. (Applause.) From Pope Field, we’ve got Air Force. (Applause.) And I do believe we’ve got some Navy and Marine Corps here, too.

 

AUDIENCE MEMBER: Yes! (Laughter.)

 

THE PRESIDENT: And though they’re not here with us today, we send our thoughts and prayers to General Helmick, Sergeant Major Rice and all the folks from the 18th Airborne and Bragg who are bringing our troops back from Iraq. (Applause.) We honor everyone from the 82nd Airborne and Bragg serving and succeeding in Afghanistan, and General Votel and those serving around the world.

 

And let me just say, one of the most humbling moments I’ve had as President was when I presented our nation’s highest military decoration, the Medal of Honor, to the parents of one of those patriots from Fort Bragg who gave his life in Afghanistan -- Staff Sergeant Robert Miller.

 

I want to salute Ginny Rodriguez, Miriam Mulholland, Linda Anderson, Melissa Helmick, Michelle Votel and all the inspiring military families here today. We honor your service as well. (Applause.)

 

And finally, I want to acknowledge your neighbors and friends who help keep your -- this outstanding operation going, all who help to keep you Army Strong, and that includes Representatives Mike McIntyre, and Dave Price, and Heath Shuler, and Governor Bev Perdue. I know Bev is so proud to have done so much for our military families. So give them a big round of applause. (Applause.)

 

Today, I’ve come to speak to you about the end of the war in Iraq. Over the last few months, the final work of leaving Iraq has been done. Dozens of bases with American names that housed thousands of American troops have been closed down or turned over to the Iraqis. Thousands of tons of equipment have been packed up and shipped out. Tomorrow, the colors of United States Forces-Iraq -- the colors you fought under -- will be formally cased in a ceremony in Baghdad. Then they’ll begin their journey across an ocean, back home.

 

Over the last three years, nearly 150,000 U.S. troops have left Iraq. And over the next few days, a small group of American soldiers will begin the final march out of that country. Some of them are on their way back to Fort Bragg. As General Helmick said, “They know that the last tactical road march out of Iraq will be a symbol, and they’re going to be a part of history.”

 

As your Commander-in-Chief, I can tell you that it will indeed be a part of history. Those last American troops will move south on desert sands, and then they will cross the border out of Iraq with their heads held high. One of the most extraordinary chapters in the history of the American military will come to an end. Iraq’s future will be in the hands of its people. America’s war in Iraq will be over.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: Now, we knew this day would come. We’ve known it for some time. But still, there is something profound about the end of a war that has lasted so long.

 

Now, nine years ago, American troops were preparing to deploy to the Persian Gulf and the possibility that they would be sent to war. Many of you were in grade school. I was a state senator. Many of the leaders now governing Iraq -- including the Prime Minister -- were living in exile. And since then, our efforts in Iraq have taken many twists and turns. It was a source of great controversy here at home, with patriots on both sides of the debate. But there was one constant -- there was one constant: your patriotism, your commitment to fulfill your mission, your abiding commitment to one another. That was constant. That did not change. That did not waiver.

 

It’s harder to end a war than begin one. Indeed, everything that American troops have done in Iraq -– all the fighting and all the dying, the bleeding and the building, and the training and the partnering -– all of it has led to this moment of success. Now, Iraq is not a perfect place. It has many challenges ahead. But we’re leaving behind a sovereign, stable and self-reliant Iraq, with a representative government that was elected by its people. We’re building a new partnership between our nations. And we are ending a war not with a final battle, but with a final march toward home.

 

This is an extraordinary achievement, nearly nine years in the making. And today, we remember everything that you did to make it possible.

 

We remember the early days -– the American units that streaked across the sands and skies of Iraq; the battles from Karbala to Baghdad, American troops breaking the back of a brutal dictator in less than a month.

 

We remember the grind of the insurgency -– the roadside bombs, the sniper fire, the suicide attacks. From the “triangle of death” to the fight for Ramadi; from Mosul in the north to Basra in the south -– your will proved stronger than the terror of those who tried to break it.

 

We remember the specter of sectarian violence -– al Qaeda’s attacks on mosques and pilgrims, militias that carried out campaigns of intimidation and campaigns of assassination. And in the face of ancient divisions, you stood firm to help those Iraqis who put their faith in the future.

 

We remember the surge and we remember the Awakening -– when the abyss of chaos turned toward the promise of reconciliation. By battling and building block by block in Baghdad, by bringing tribes into the fold and partnering with the Iraqi army and police, you helped turn the tide toward peace.

 

And we remember the end of our combat mission and the emergence of a new dawn -– the precision of our efforts against al Qaeda in Iraq, the professionalism of the training of Iraqi security forces, and the steady drawdown of our forces. In handing over responsibility to the Iraqis, you preserved the gains of the last four years and made this day possible.

 

Just last month, some of you -- members of the Falcon Brigade --

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: -- turned over the Anbar Operations Center to the Iraqis in the type of ceremony that has become commonplace over these last several months. In an area that was once the heart of the insurgency, a combination of fighting and training, politics and partnership brought the promise of peace. And here’s what the local Iraqi deputy governor said: “This is all because of the U.S. forces’ hard work and sacrifice.”

 

That’s in the words of an Iraqi. Hard work and sacrifice. Those words only begin to describe the costs of this war and the courage of the men and women who fought it.

 

We know too well the heavy cost of this war. More than 1.5 million Americans have served in Iraq -- 1.5 million. Over 30,000 Americans have been wounded, and those are only the wounds that show. Nearly 4,500 Americans made the ultimate sacrifice -- including 202 fallen heroes from here at Fort Bragg -- 202. So today, we pause to say a prayer for all those families who have lost their loved ones, for they are part of our broader American family. We grieve with them.

 

We also know that these numbers don’t tell the full story of the Iraq war -– not even close. Our civilians have represented our country with skill and bravery. Our troops have served tour after tour of duty, with precious little dwell time in between. Our Guard and Reserve units stepped up with unprecedented service. You’ve endured dangerous foot patrols and you’ve endured the pain of seeing your friends and comrades fall. You’ve had to be more than soldiers, sailors, airmen, Marines and Coast Guardsmen –- you’ve also had to be diplomats and development workers and trainers and peacemakers. Through all this, you have shown why the United States military is the finest fighting force in the history of the world.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah! (Applause.)

 

THE PRESIDENT: As Michelle mentioned, we also know that the burden of war is borne by your families. In countless base communities like Bragg, folks have come together in the absence of a loved one. As the Mayor of Fayetteville put it, “War is not a political word here. War is where our friends and neighbors go.” So there have been missed birthday parties and graduations. There are bills to pay and jobs that have to be juggled while picking up the kids. For every soldier that goes on patrol, there are the husbands and the wives, the mothers, the fathers, the sons, the daughters praying that they come back.

 

So today, as we mark the end of the war, let us acknowledge, let us give a heartfelt round of applause for every military family that has carried that load over the last nine years. You too have the thanks of a grateful nation. (Applause.)

 

Part of ending a war responsibly is standing by those who fought it. It’s not enough to honor you with words. Words are cheap. We must do it with deeds. You stood up for America; America needs to stand up for you.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: That’s why, as your Commander-in Chief, I am committed to making sure that you get the care and the benefits and the opportunities that you’ve earned. For those of you who remain in uniform, we will do whatever it takes to ensure the health of our force –- including your families. We will keep faith with you.

 

We will help our wounded warriors heal, and we will stand by those who’ve suffered the unseen wounds of war. And make no mistake -- as we go forward as a nation, we are going to keep America’s armed forces the strongest fighting force the world has ever seen. That will not stop.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah! (Applause.)

 

THE PRESIDENT: That will not stop. But our commitment doesn’t end when you take off the uniform. You’re the finest that our nation has to offer. And after years of rebuilding Iraq, we want to enlist our veterans in the work of rebuilding America. That’s why we’re committed to doing everything we can to extend more opportunities to those who have served.

 

That includes the Post-9/11 G.I. Bill, so that you and your families can get the education that allows you to live out your dreams. That includes a national effort to put our veterans to work. We’ve worked with Congress to pass a tax credit so that companies have the incentive to hire vets. And Michelle has worked with the private sector to get commitments to create 100,000 jobs for those who’ve served.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: And by the way, we’re doing this not just because it’s the right thing to do by you –- we’re doing it because it’s the right thing to do for America. Folks like my grandfather came back from World War II to form the backbone of this country’s middle class. For our post-9/11 veterans -– with your skill, with your discipline, with your leadership, I am confident that the story of your service to America is just beginning.

 

But there’s something else that we owe you. As Americans, we have a responsibility to learn from your service. I’m thinking of an example -- Lieutenant Alvin Shell, who was based here at Fort Bragg. A few years ago, on a supply route outside Baghdad, he and his team were engulfed by flames from an RPG attack. Covered with gasoline, he ran into the fire to help his fellow soldiers, and then led them two miles back to Camp Victory where he finally collapsed, covered with burns. When they told him he was a hero, Alvin disagreed. “I’m not a hero,” he said. “A hero is a sandwich. “ (Laughter.) “I’m a paratrooper.”

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: We could do well to learn from Alvin. This country needs to learn from you. Folks in Washington need to learn from you.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: Policymakers and historians will continue to analyze the strategic lessons of Iraq -- that’s important to do. Our commanders will incorporate the hard-won lessons into future military campaigns -- that’s important to do. But the most important lesson that we can take from you is not about military strategy –- it’s a lesson about our national character.

 

For all of the challenges that our nation faces, you remind us that there’s nothing we Americans can’t do when we stick together.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah!

 

THE PRESIDENT: For all the disagreements that we face, you remind us there’s something bigger than our differences, something that makes us one nation and one people regardless of color, regardless of creed, regardless of what part of the country we come from, regardless of what backgrounds we come out of. You remind us we’re one nation.

 

And that’s why the United States military is the most respected institution in our land because you never forget that. You can’t afford to forget it. If you forget it, somebody dies. If you forget it, a mission fails. So you don’t forget it. You have each other’s backs. That’s why you, the 9/11 Generation, has earned your place in history.

 

Because of you -- because you sacrificed so much for a people that you had never met, Iraqis have a chance to forge their own destiny. That’s part of what makes us special as Americans. Unlike the old empires, we don’t make these sacrifices for territory or for resources. We do it because it’s right. There can be no fuller expression of America’s support for self-determination than our leaving Iraq to its people. That says something about who we are.

 

Because of you, in Afghanistan we’ve broken the momentum of the Taliban. Because of you, we’ve begun a transition to the Afghans that will allow us to bring our troops home from there. And around the globe, as we draw down in Iraq, we have gone after al Qaeda so that terrorists who threaten America will have no safe haven, and Osama bin Laden will never again walk the face of this Earth.

 

AUDIENCE: Hooah! (Applause.)

 

THE PRESIDENT: So here’s what I want you to know, and here’s what I want all our men and women in uniform to know: Because of you, we are ending these wars in a way that will make America stronger and the world more secure. Because of you.

 

That success was never guaranteed. And let us never forget the source of American leadership: our commitment to the values that are written into our founding documents, and a unique willingness among nations to pay a great price for the progress of human freedom and dignity. This is who we are. That’s what we do as Americans, together.

 

The war in Iraq will soon belong to history. Your service belongs to the ages. Never forget that you are part of an unbroken line of heroes spanning two centuries –- from the colonists who overthrew an empire, to your grandparents and parents who faced down fascism and communism, to you –- men and women who fought for the same principles in Fallujah and Kandahar, and delivered justice to those who attacked us on 9/11.

 

Looking back on the war that saved our union, a great American, Oliver Wendell Holmes, once paid tribute to those who served. “In our youth,” he said, “our hearts were touched with fire. It was given to us to learn at the outset that life is a profound and passionate thing.”

 

All of you here today have lived through the fires of war. You will be remembered for it. You will be honored for it -- always. You have done something profound with your lives. When this nation went to war, you signed up to serve. When times were tough, you kept fighting. When there was no end in sight, you found light in the darkness.

 

And years from now, your legacy will endure in the names of your fallen comrades etched on headstones at Arlington, and the quiet memorials across our country; in the whispered words of admiration as you march in parades, and in the freedom of our children and our grandchildren. And in the quiet of night, you will recall that your heart was once touched by fire. You will know that you answered when your country called; you served a cause greater than yourselves; you helped forge a just and lasting peace with Iraq, and among all nations.

 

I could not be prouder of you, and America could not be prouder of you.

 

God bless you all, God bless your families, and God bless the United States of America. (Applause.)

 

Fort Bragg, North Carolina

11:52 A.M. EST

 

END

12:26 P.M. EST

  

December 14, 2011

--------------------------------

--------------------------------

 

The White House

December 15, 2011

  

Good afternoon,

 

After nearly nine years, our war in Iraq is ending.

 

In recent days, many of our troops have come home and been reunited with their families for the holidays. Over the next few days, a small group of American soldiers will begin the final march out of Iraq.

 

This moment of success is because of their sacrifice. More than 1.5 million Americans have served in Iraq. More than 30,000 of these brave men and women were wounded. Nearly 4,500 gave their lives. America’s military families have borne a heavy burden.

 

As we mark the end of this war, we need to show our veterans and their families that they have the thanks of a grateful nation.

 

Part of ending a war responsibly is standing by those who have fought it. It's not enough to honor our heroes with words; we must do so with deeds.

 

That's why we've worked to send 600,000 veterans and family members back to school on the Post-9/11 GI Bill. That's why one of Michelle's top priorities as First Lady has been to support military families and why she's worked with the private sector to get commitments to create 100,000 jobs for those who've served and their spouses. That's why we worked with Congress to pass a tax credit so that companies have an incentive to hire vets and have taken steps to help veterans translate military experience to the private sector job market.

 

In America, our commitment to those who fight for our freedom and our ideals doesn't end when our troops take off the uniform.

 

You can be a part of this effort to honor our heroes.

 

Help mark this moment. Write a quick note that troops and veterans all over the world will be able to see:

 

www.whitehouse.gov/iraq

 

Thank you,

 

President Barack Obama

 

in our kitchen New Year day....

I thought i'd maybe do a series of house photo's...while the decorations are still up...

I will be taking them down after this weekend, beginning of next week. we keep everything up until the 8th or so.

Our family has been doing this since i was a child. My grandparents (grandpa only now living) is Hungarian and this has been their tradition. Known as Ukrainian Christmas and/or Epiphany, there are many names....

Today, is the offical day it starts (the Eve of Ukraine) and the feast of holiday ends January 13th-19th.

 

btw, it's snowing beautifully here as i type this...what a gorgeous start to the holiday....hehehe.....more pressies to open =)

 

xxx

The newest incarnation of my "Wall of Awesomeness"

 

Part 1 is www.flickr.com/photos/egsalms/4837036826/

 

Once again, everything has a note, so move your mouse over it to find out more.

 

The shelf on the wall collapsed over the weekend. So I figured, I would use up most of the white space on my wall with more stuff. This is part II of the Wall Of Awesomeness. I have not changed much of the original design, but I did move the Dr Demento album cover, and in its place I have Buckner & Garcia's Pac-Man Fever.

My Grandmother Emily has long since been in Heaven but her dark fruitcake flambe on Christmas day will stay with me forever!

 

I tried my version this morning, long story, more fun than success!!! Ha ha ha! But had fun anyway!

 

Alone for Christmas (plus 3 cats!) in this house but so much love all around me! Dave off to his family Christmas (great blessings as his Dad's heath has challenges) and my daughter is with her sweetie who just moved to Texas to be closer to her, and all the great children and staff at my job, my neighbors, my friends and family all over the country, in many ways, I am not alone!*...

 

ingredients:

 

gluten free flour(s)

eggs

pineapples

pineapple juice

dried cranberries

fresh cranberries

raisins

dates

black figs

dried apricots

pecans

walnuts

cashews

oil

(soy free) margarine

Demarara sugar

local honey

molassis

cloves

nutmeg

ginger

baking soda

baking powder

salt

dark chocolate chunks (a last minute inspiration that I could have left out!)

more holiday theme!

 

i'm going to be honest: i nicked this nifty christmas decoration from a restaurant in the german city i studied in my junior year of college. and i don't regret it. i initially posted the back story here, but changed my mind because i write A LOT. it's here if interested.

 

hope everyone had a nice christmas day -- i spent it mostly with my grandparents. my grandfather offered me a summer job of hauling/stacking wood and mowing their steep, boondocks lawn. free room, grandmother's cooking AND pay on top of it? i'd be lying if i said i wasn't considering.

 

304/365

Here is how Rosman Elementary is celebrating Red Ribbon Week, putting the spotlight on how to prepare for and live out a happy life without drugs:

 

Dear Rosman Elementary Parents,

 

This week of November 3rd through November 7th is recognized as National Red Ribbon Week. Red Ribbon week was established in 1988 after DEA agent Kiki Camerena was killed in the line of duty. Red Ribbon Week is celebrated to raise awareness of the effects of drug and alcohol abuse. The campaign has reached millions of children and has been recognized by the United States Congress. Research shows that children are less likely to use alcohol and other drugs when parents and other role models are clear and consistent in their opposition to substance use and abuse. We will be participating in this celebration at our school this week.

 

Below is a list of activities in which the students will be involved:

 

Monday 11/3 – “Team up to be drug free”- Wear your favorite team jersey.

 

Tuesday 11/4- “ I am a jean-ius, I am Drug Free”- Wear jeans day.

 

Wednesday 11/5 – “Your choices are the key to your dreams”- Pajama day.

 

Thursday 11/6 – “From head to toe, I am Drug Free”- Crazy hair and socks day.

 

Friday 11/7 – “Hats off to being Drug Free”- Wear a hat day.

 

Other school wide activities will include a class door decoration contest with a “The best me is drug free” theme. The winning class will have the pleasure of throwing pies at me, Mr. Strickler, Mrs. Whitman and Mrs. Owens. We will also be doing a “Red Ribbon Run” on Friday, Novemeber 7th at 2:00.

 

As we all know the abuse of prescription medication in this country is on the rise. Parents and grandparents are encouraged to join with Transylvania County Schools and the Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office in helping us cut down on this problem. There is drop off point for all old or unused prescription pills located in the lobby of the Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office located at 153 Public Safety way off of Morris Road.

 

Please join us in celebrating being drug free!

 

Sincerely,

Deputy Scott Thomas

School Resource Officer

Transylvania County Sheriff’s Office

 

:copyright: 2014, Transylvania County Schools. All rights reserved.

 

info@tcsnc.org, 884-6173 ext. 379

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