February 18, 2011

Plants and the Cats Who Love Them!

Cats have a natural desire to chew on plants. If you don't want Tabby to eat your house plants, you may need to convince him that he doesn't want to!

Read my article, Cats and Plants, a Likely Combination 
for suggestions on how to be creative and keep both you and your cat happy.

February 8, 2011

400th Anniversary of the King James Bible

KJV Beginners Bible Holy Bible-HC
When I was a kid going to Sunday School and Vacation Bible School, I worked hard to memorize any Bible verses we studied in our lessons.  After all, there were always rewards such as a sticker, pencil, bookmark or other small prizes.   And yes, I was competitive enough that if other kids in our class were learning the verses, then I wanted to, also.

We were always given the verses from the King James Bible.  I now prefer to read a modern translation simply because the wording is more natural and easier to understand.

KJV Cameo Reference Black Goatskin KJ456:XRE
However, the KJV (King James Version) has certainly stood the test of time.  This year we are celebrating the 400th anniversary of the King James Bible.  Here is its story.

In 1526, the first translation of the New Testament into English was published by Tyndale.  Then in 1604, King James I of England authorized a new translation of the Bible into English. That one was the King James Version of the Bible.  The completed work was published on May 2, 1611.  It was printed in black letters with small italicized Roman type.  It became the Bible used by English-speaking Protestants.  Later it became known as the Authorized Version and went through several editions and revisions.

May 2, 1611 to May 2, 2011, that's 400 years.  The King James Bible is the most printed book in the history of the world!

February 5, 2011

So The Emperor Thought He Could Stand In the Way of Love!

(photo by Hdconnelly, Dreamstime.com)

There are several stories of how Valentine's Day began. Probably the most popular is about St.Valentine, a Roman priest who lived during the third century.

Rome at that time was ruled by Emperor Claudius. Claudius wanted men to volunteer for the army; however, many men did not want to join because they didn't want to leave their wives and children. Claudius thought that if men were not married, they would want to sign up for the army. So he decided to not allow people to marry!

Foolish, foolish Emperor Claudius, he actually thought he could stand in the way of love!

Of course this did not go over well. St. Valentine used to marry people before the new law, and he continued to do so.  He would secretly perform marriage ceremonies.  One day he was caught and thrown in jail and scheduled to be put to death.

The prison guard had a daughter who visited him in his cell and became his friend.  The day he was to die, St. Valentine left her a farewell note thanking her for her friendship. He signed it, "Love from your Valentine."  He died February 14, 269 A.D.

It is believed that St. Valentine's note began the exchange of love and friendship on February 14.  And, of course, people are still laughing at  Emperor Claudius because he was foolish enough to think he could stand in the way of love!

February 2, 2011

Sailor, Poor Man, or Millionaire?

Fun Valentine Traditions  It is said that if a woman sees a robin flying overhead on Valentine's Day, it means she will marry a sailor.  If she sees a sparrow, she will marry a poor man and be very happy.  If she sees a goldfinch, she will marry a millionaire.

If you cut an apple in half and count how many seeds are inside, you will also know how many children you will have.

Take a dandelion that has gone to seed.  Blow the seeds into the wind with one breath. The number of seeds left is how many children you will have.  (We used to do this when I was a kid.  But we cheated by blowing more than once if too many seeds were  left . . . or we didn't blow very hard so we'd get the number we thought we wanted!)

In the Middle Ages, young people drew names to see who their valentines would be.  They would wear these names on their sleeves for one week. The saying we are familiar with--to wear your heart on your sleeve--means that it is easy for other people to know how you are feeling.

Think of six names of boys or girls you might marry.  As you twist the stem of an apple, recite the names until the stem comes off.  You will marry the person whose name you were saying when the stem fell off.  (We used to cheat with this one, too.  After all, you could twist really hard when the "right" name came along!)