Party Like a President

On my last birthday, my brother gave me a book about the US President’s drinking, gambling and carousing habits through the years. In it I found a recipe for syllabub, an olde English dessert, which was popular during James Monroe’s presidency.

Here’s the recipe: 2/3 c. white wine, 1/3 c. sherry, 2 T. grated lemon zest, ¼ c. lemon juice, 2/3 c. sugar, 2 c. heavy cream, fresh mint sprigs and berries. Mix the wine, sherry, lemon zest and lemon juice in a bowl. Stir in the sugar until dissolved.

 

 

In a separate bowl, whip the cream until the mixture forms into medium-size stiff peaks. Then, combine and stir with the wine mixture. Scoop the mixture into wineglasses. Cover the glasses and chill in the refrigerator for at least 12 hours. When ready to serve, top with the mint and berries.

 

 

Source: Party Like a President: True Tales of Inebriation, Lechery and Mischief from the Oval Office, By Brian Abrams. Workman Publishing. 2015

Flightless Birds- Meet the Kakapo

Meet the kakapo, also known as an “owl parrot” is also a native of New Zealand. This nocturnal parrot has an owl’s face, penguin’s stance, and duck’s gait. It is truly a strange bird—but also a beautiful one, with bright green-brown feathers. It can grow up to 2 feet in length, and is the world’s heaviest parrot. The males make a distinctive booming call that sounds like a one-bird jug band, which can be heard up to half a mile away!

Source: https://www.britannica.com/list/8-birds-that-cant-fly

I saw a seagull flying far from home

seagull1I live in Pasadena, so it’s surprising to me to see so many shore birds in the city. Near the Panera Restaurant where I like to have breakfast there are a group of seagulls that inhabit the parking lot, so I thought I’d find out what animal medicine these birds are attributed with. Here’s what I found:

“Seagulls are spiritual messengers that demonstrate that a higher communication with guides is taking place. He shows how to see above situations with a higher clarity and teaches that there are many perspectives to consider.

seagulls1Seagull shows a sense friendship and community and the cooperation that is needed for the whole to operate successfully. He teaches how to ride the currents of the mental, emotional and physical worlds. Are you going with the flow or fighting it? Are you cooperating with others? Are you open to your guides? Seagull can teach you many lessons of looking, living and being. It is time to listen and watch for the nuances and timing of action.”  Source: http://www.starstuffs.com/animal_totems/dictionary_of_birds.html

 

Don’t eat that angletwitch

earthwormAn angletwitch is an earthworm, the word originated in 14th century Merry Olde England from: Middle English angeltwicche, angeltwacche, from Old English angeltwæcce, angeltwicce, from angel hook + -twæcce, -twicce (from twiccian to pluck, catch hold of). Source: https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/angletwitch

 

weird-and-wonderful-words-book-coverThis word was found in the wonderful and often hilarious book: Weird and Wonderful Words, edited by Erin McKean

 

What weird and wonderful words do you have to share today? Please post them in the comments section with their meanings!!

Let us worship words!

oliver-wendell-holmes-sr-quoteOur word for today was found in a page in the Reader’s Digest:  epeolatry, meaning, the worship of words.

Etymology: From Greek, epos (word) + -latry (worship).

 

oliver-wendell-holmes-sr-1The first citation of the word is from Oliver Wendell Holmes, Sr., in his 1860 book Professor at the Breakfast Table.

For another cool source for new words, visit: http://wordsmith.org/words/epeolatry.html

Squirrel away food for the future

oak tree-exI have 17 large trees surrounding my property, from oak and eucalyptus, to pine and peach and avocado, they attract and support many forms of wildlife. My yard is filled with birdsong and the chattering of the extensive squirrel family who live in the oaks. Squirrels are playful, as well as industrious, gathering the acorns from the oaks and divesting the pine trees of pine cones for their seeds.

 

 

Accordinsquirrel-eating-an-acorng to the Animal Medicine cards, Squirrel teaches humans to plan ahead for the winter, to store or “squirrel away” food for the time when food will become scarce. This idea can be expanded to mean one should be prepared for what the future may bring. (1)

 

 

squirrel-familySquirrels prepare for the future by storing acorns and sharing the bounty with the scurry (a group/family of squirrels is called a scurry). The term “dray” is specifically used to refer to a mother squirrel and her young. (2)

So, if squirrel has leapt playfully into your life today, remember to put some of your earnings and other resources aside for a rainy day!

 

medicine-card-bookSources cited:

(1) From the book “Medicine Cards” by Jamie Sams and David Carson-http://jamiesamsbooks.com/medicinecards.cfm

(2) https://www.reference.com/pets-animals/group-squirrels-called-69e09eb7aba12ffc