Week-long Welcomings from Moosylvania: Dec. 17th through Dec. 23rd

Welcome to The Moose Pond! The Welcomings posts give the Moose, old and new, a place to visit and share words about the weather, life, the world at large and the small parts of Moosylvania that we each inhabit.

Welcomings will be posted at the start of each week (every Sunday morning). To find the posts, just bookmark this link and Voila! (which is Moose for “I found everyone!!”).

The format is simple: each day, the first moose to arrive on-line will post a comment welcoming the new day and complaining (or bragging!) about their weather. Or mentioning an interesting or thought provoking news item. Or simply checking in.

So … what’s going on in your part of Moosylvania?

NOTE: The comments page will now split off after 20 or so left margin comments with the most recent comments on the current page. To see the older comments, scroll to the bottom of the page and use the link.


Page One of comments is HERE!
Page Two of comments is HERE!




  1. Morning, meeses. Wednesday …

    It is 27 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 28. Mostly cloudy skies are in the forecast. The wind yesterday blew in a cold front, obviously. Snow tomorrow and Friday then a plunge into the deep freeze with single digit highs by the 25th.

    I was watching the #TaxCutAndJobsToAsiaAct passage yesterday and had to shut it off. There was too much glee over people’s pain. I think the worst moment was seeing Mitch McConnell say “we have ripped the heart out of Obamacare” because of the repeal of the individual mandate. I was wondering why Susan Collins and Lisa Murkowski bothered saving the ACA only to kill it a few months later. But the Republicans have been brutally honest about their motivation – their donors told them no more money until they passed tax cuts and killed the ACA. Mission Accomplished! Their side will have billions in donations but our side will have determination. I hope “wanting to vote the bums out” is enough.

    Speaking of determination, the Virginia House of Delegates flipped control because of one vote. That race will become the poster child for 2018: “You think your vote doesn’t matter? In Virginia in 2017, a one vote margin elected the 50th Democrat, ending 18 years of Republican control.” The body ended up tied but there is at least one race that could still flip to us, one of the races where voters were given the wrong ballots. The Republican won by 83 votes in that race.

    Tomorrow is Winter Solstice, my favorite holiday. I don’t mind winter. It is a quiet time when the earth is still and, with the light returning, filled with promise. The waxing crescent moon makes it perfect.

    See all y’all later!

  2. Good Wednesday morning Meese
    Thanks Jan for brining up the “one vote” that made a difference.

    We have work to do – getting more of those “my vote doesn’t count” folks to see that is wrong-headed.

    As usual here’s PR news

  3. Warm up before the cold front — wearing sandals for the 2nd day in a row. But it is supposed to cool down drastically over the weekend. The tax bill…will we ever undo the harm these bastards are doing? I don’t know what to do to fix this.

    Here, listen to this beautiful Live Is Bigger done live for a BBC special:

  4. Good Woden’s Day, Meese. It’s very overcast here in NoVa today, with a current temp. of 47 F., going up to 50 F. Banning obstreperous morning TV is all very well, but it means we don’t get a weather forecast. Today’s weather shall therefore remain a mystery.

    Another busy day looms. My Social is supposed to plop down into my bank account, this being the third Wednesday of the month. What’s going to happen next year, when everyone’s Social has been CUT? It’ll be like the Depression—one will have to take in boarders and do even more child-tending to make ends meet. We should all tell our Rethug representatives that we’ll move in with them if they cut our Medicare and Social Security.

    The Moose messed me up this morning and I don’t have time to retype everything, so will just express the hope for a brighter day for everyone.

    • I usually turn on the NBC channel for my daughter who watches it to get the local and national news before she goes to school. When I turned it on, I saw Granny Killer Ryan’s smirking face and switched to Weather Nation. How can someone have a lifelong goal of destroying the social safety net by draining the treasury into the pockets of the have-mores? May he end up old and despised, his children and grandchildren cursing his name and the legacy of stacks of dead grannies and poors.

      We can’t fix this right now and may not be able to until January 2021. Even if we take over Congress, we will have no executive willing to sign repair bills until we have a Democratic president. It is beyond frustrating.

  5. 51 at dawn, may or may not make it to 60 if things clear off – got .6″ rain since bedtime last night but it seems to have stopped well short of an entire inch – our cold front doesn’t move in until tomorrow evening which is a very good thing. The university shuts down for the holidays at c.o.b. tomorrow so nobody but “essential personnel” will have to go out in the cold on Friday or next week if they don’t want to. Only got 1.4 KWHs yesterday and the m-t-d is 116.4 – from the looks of the 10-day forecast, we’re not making 200 for the month. But if we reach 150 we’ll beat last year’s total. And the annual is more than I use already so i’m OK. i just like making more. :) Even though i know the utility company will give themselves a present of at least 150 KWHs in about 15 months. Wanting to do good even when somebody else is getting “credit” is I guess what makes me a Dem or something.

    I’m gonna have to figure out some way to use twitter to keep in touch with my “online family” without trying to read all the stuff that’s hitting my feed. Or even most of the stuff that’s hitting my feed. There is no way I can counter that much negativity. The Evil Ones are being evil. No surprise. The Evil Ones are chortling over being Evil. No surprise. The Evil Ones are rejoicing in the pain they are causing as they feast on the negative energy. No surprise. But nothing I’m being bombarded with gives me something to do right now – not even for one single person, never mind for the country. Even RT’ing is not effective for me as all the folks I am following are following each other and it wouldn’t reach any new people (which I thought was the point) and would bombard my followers’ feed with stuff they just sent me. So. I need to find a way to help – even if it’s helping one single person at a time – and I need to find a way to stay out of the Pit of Despair myself and I need to figure out how to use the tools at my command to keep in touch with my “online families” – that will definitely keep me busy for a while starting Friday. (At least as of Friday I can go back to making phone calls more regularly – not having to catch a moment when the office is empty.)

    Need to get back to work – today and tomorrow are it – Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • Two things you might consider: mute and lists.

      My TweetCaster app allows me to mute people and hashtags for a period of time (not forever) when the information is too depressing or the person is being very obnoxious about something. That can help trim your timeline to be more manageable.

      Another option is building a list of just the people who you know won’t debbie downer you. Then you can follow that list and ignore the news sites for a while.

      You absolutely should retweet even if you follow the same people because the timeline is date and time dependent. So if you get a tweet tweeted into your timeline that you are pretty sure was tweeted at everyone in your follow list, yes, retweeting it then and there is just silly. BUT if you Like the Tweet and then go back a few hours later and retweet from your Like list, the tweet will hit a completely different set of people, folks who may have not been online when the tweet first hit.

      For example, Dee, who is an early riser, tweets out a couple of Puerto Rico tweets to her followers at 6am Eastern. You log in at 7am Central, 2 hours later, and see it in the “In Case You Missed It” list. If you tweet them out, you reach whoever is online at that time which may be a different group than were online when Dee first tweeted them out. So it does not hurt to retweet. Like I said, only the most Twitter obsessed needs to read every tweet that arrived in their timeline since they went to bed – or since they went to the restroom! Your tweet will hit a different group of people at any given point in the day.

      I hope that makes sense. Understanding how the technology works can help you use it more productively and keep you sane.

      • Thank you. I’ve just popped over to my home page and retweeted a couple. :) – It’s not so much the people who are doing it, it’s partly just the number of tweets and it’s partly the repetition. Multiple rt’s of 15 different versions of the tax scam is going to kill people. It’s just as true and just as rage-inducing at one version and one posting and not taking up 2 screenloads to scroll through searching for another discreet piece of information.

        I’ll stick with it and figure out how best to use it for what it is. What I doubt I’ll be able to use it for, at least not very efficiently, is what I got on it for – to contact and keep track of folks. That’s not what it is designed for – the blessing of DK and Moose and Squirrel is that “community” is part of the mission along with the political information and activity. But I can only use the community platforms with people who are members. Many of the folks I’m seeking are not members of Moose or Squirrel and I am no longer able to contact folks on DK. But a wrench can function as a perfectly good wrench and a poor but serviceable hammer at need. :) Thanks again & {{{HUGS}}}

        • One thing I recommend is installing a Twitter avatar. It does not have to be a photo of you (I use the new moon because its special magic is needed right now) but the default one makes you look like a Russian bot! The default used to be a egg (from the Twitter bird, I guess) and there were many jokes about people with egg avatars. Of course, the default avatar does not mean people are bots, just not as technical as others. If you don’t know how to upload an avatar, have one of your sons do it for you. I have a long time blogging friend who was an egg for many years simply because she did not know how to upload an avatar. Once of her trusted peeps fixed it for her.

          • I think I did it – if I did it right of course – it’s sort of the same avatar I had at DK of my cat Charlie peering intently at the cell phone that was taking his picture. LOL. He’d never seen a cell phone before. But I can see him so I hope everybody else can, too.

          • It looks like only your header photo (the one that people see when they go to your profile) is Charlie but your profile photo (the one that people see when they look at a tweet or reply from you) is the default. You can change your avatar by going to your profile and clicking on “Edit profile”, and then click on “change your profile photo” to update it.

  6. Good morning, 35 and sunny in Bellingham. The frost ring on my window and the wintery sky outside are telling me to stay cozy this morning. So I’m listening to music, enjoying a cup of coffee, and procrastinating re facing the day.

    Best wishes to all.

  7. Good morning, meese! Thursday …

    It is 25 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 35. The forecast calls for snow flurries off and on during the day but no measurable accumulation.

    Sunny Solstice to you all! Here in Madison we have actually been at our darkest time (9 hours of daylight) since Dec. 17th and will not see our first new minute of daylight until the 27th but the astronomical Winter Solstice is today. The holiday welcoming back the light is my favorite – it is so hopeful, so invigorating, It is no wonder that our ancestors created elaborate means of noting the exact time when the daylight would begin returning.

    And me! But not as elaborate as Stonehenge or New Grange. :)

    Welcome, Returning Light!

    See all y’all later!

  8. Cold this morning — in the 40s. I sort of regretted just wearing a long sleeve shirt, but this afternoon it’s going to be 80, so I thought hauling around a sweater would be excessive. Last day of work till Wednesday. Slept really badly, I haven’t been exercising. Going to use The Blackout to wake me up — the loud, rowdy live version.

  9. Good morning, Moosekind, and a blessed Solstice to all. It will happen around 11 this morning, from what I’ve read. Currently it’s 25 F. on this frosty morning in NoVa going up to 46 F. later.

    Younger Son had outpatient surgery yesterday, which means he is not permitted to drive. In an hour I’ll be leaving to pick up Mr. Preschooler to take him to day care and Miss Pink Cheeks, who will be here for the day. We’re going to bake pumpkin bread to give to the neighbors for Christmas.

    The tax scam passage is so awful that I’m going to have to take a break from the news. Our house still is not ready for Christmas, so Dearly and I will be scrambling all day. He accompanied Younger Son to the medical facility yesterday and was gone from early morning until after tea.

    Wishing a good day to all at the Pond—the Light returns!

  10. 55 heading for 65 and sunny which is very good – and sort of a nice omen of things to come, too. :) Only got 2.3 KWHs yesterday, m-t-d is 118.8 – we shall see what the rest of the day and month bring. Did a few solstice-y things after dark last night. Blessings of the Light, Blessings of the Dark. The cycle is not whole without all its pieces.

    Something’s wrong with my Yahoo mail – it only shows the last 12 hours of mail – I can’t find in active, archive, spam, or trash anything older than 12 hours. I can’t delete anything, can’t mark anything to move it to a folder. I can’t reply or send a new mail. I also can’t get to anything with the yahoo help that does any good. I may have just lost a whole lot of contact information and stuff – which totally pisses me off. All that information I had “safely” online in my yahoo mail account is why I haven’t changed to another email provider. I will hope this is a system problem they will fix. Otherwise i really don’t know what to do.

    Evil Ones being Evil. It’s what they do. No surprise. Kill people, take food from children, laugh as people die without needed heathcare. Evil. We outnumber them. We will overcome them. They are in power so it will take time and we will suffer losses in the process. But we can and will. We’ve done it before, we’ll do it again. Because enough Will, is Will enough.

    Today is my last day of work. The university is closed until 1/2/18 so it won’t really sink in until I don’t go back to work then. :) It still feels strange. I need to take home stuff I’d “normally” leave for when I come back. My fingerless gloves, my Notary Public stuff, my single-cup coffee maker (for when I’m the only coffee drinker in the office) – stuff. Not sure about the floor heater. I may leave that as I don’t think I can use it at home. Life is a cycle, it’s time for this one to come to its close. But I am at work and I need to get some done. So bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

    • Dearest bfitz, I hope you’ll have a good “last day” at work!

      You’ll feel so liberated when your new regime sinks in. It is nothing less than wonderful to be mistress of your own time, to live life at your own pace.

      Will email you later after the pumpkin bread is in the oven so you’ll have my address. Bloody old Yahoo! Why does it have to go wobbly at this time of year?

      Blessed be, and a blessed Winter Solstice to you.

      • {{{Diana}}} – thanks for the good wishes and the email. I’ll get used to being retired but I have to admit it feels a little strange right now. As to my email, apparently I had accidentally gotten myself into a sort of parallel Beta test 6 weeks ago and the test period was up – by an equal accident I found my way back to my regular email with everything in it – plus about 700 items in my spam folder that the beta hadn’t shown. So far I’m golden.

        Hope your pumpkin bread came out well. Hope your solstice was better. We have faced the Darkest time of the year and are now firmly on the path back into the Light. Blessed Be. and moar {{{HUGS}}}

      • {{{anotherdemocrat}}} – thank you and it was strange. Everything so very normal for the last working day of the year and yet so not. But it’s over now. I should get a payout for my unused vacation (about 6 weeks worth) and my W-2s in late January and that will be that. Except it’s not exactly. Retirement isn’t the same as just leaving. I’ve got a “retired staff” ID card. I can use the gym facilities if I want to (I don’t), the university library system (that I might), and I can get the employee prices for rental cars as long as I make my reservation through the UA travel website. It’s just strange. moar {{{HUGS}}}

        • Good luck with your retirement! I hope you find pleasant things to fill your time with. I have not “gone to an office” for over 30 years so it is difficult for me to remember what that was like but I can imagine what a shock that might be. My own retirement will be done in stages, slowly moving away from the hardware/network clients and ending up with software-only clients who I can manage from the cloud with fewer and fewer hard deadlines and “have to be sitting at my desk” times. Ideally I will work until I am 70 with just a few hours a week for “maintenance”.

          • {{{Jan}}} – the main thing about retirement is have a plan well ahead of time and work to bring it about. Which of course sometimes isn’t possible – mostly isn’t possible for the bottom quartile, I was just lucky. But once I got the total miracle of being able to buy a house in a low-property tax state, I dedicated 13 years to paying off the 30-year mortgage then spent the next several years using what had been my mortgage money to “retro-fit” my house for energy efficiency and add solar panels to the roof. Your plan is different from mine of course – it’s a very good plan for you. Holding the Good Thought and sending Energy to add to your own, should you wish to accept it, to that end.

            I will find things to do once I’ve rested up a bit – and then there will come along something I can be passionate about and give my heart to. Which I will. Because I do. I know giving my heart to jobs and projects is stupid – they always end and that always hurts – but I do it anyway. It’s in my DNA. :)

  11. Good morning, 30 and mostly sunny in Bellingham. My flower shop friends gave me a wonderful gift yesterday……a bucket full of flowers! I’ve been so slow doing what I usually do this year I was worried the seasonal arrangements just wouldn’t happen. But now I’ve got the fall mess in the garage relatively cleaned up so I’ve got a place to work, the muddy fir and holly branches are washed, and the flowers are ready and waiting. I left some heat on and the water dripping last night so I hope nothing is frozen.

    I’m doing all I can to counter the gloom of this tRump Christmas and I so appreciate knowing all of you are doing the same. Take care everyone.

  12. Good morning, meese! Friday …

    It is 28 degrees in Madison with an expected daytime high of 32. Most cloudy skies are in the forecast.

    The DACA kids will spend the holidays wondering how long they will be able to stay in the only country they know. Meanwhile, every day protections expire for more of them. There will be a special “reward” for people who voted for third parties and put a literal pile of crap in the White House. In case anyone wondered about the lasting effects of the tax cut bill, it was evident yesterday when many Republicans voted against the CR because it contained the PAYGO wavier for the automatic 2018 Medicare cut their devastating tax bill would have caused. That will now be the basis for “we can’t afford that” for the next 4 years. We are now in full “starve the beast” mode and I am not sure how we protect our most vulnerable from what is coming down on them.

    I’m with you, Diana. Time to turn off the news and embrace the quiet and decide how much I want to know about the awfulness. I am not sure I need daily – or hourly – reminders of the terrible thing that has happened to our country. The tax cut bill passage ripped the scab off the wound from last years election and until the bleeding stops, I have nothing to contribute. 2018 will be better – goddess, it can’t be any worse! – and I am going to focus on calendar swap day and look for signs of hope.

    See all y’all later!

  13. Good Friday Meese

    27 degrees and light snow here in Saugerties NY.

    Saw Al G. tweet about this woman who is running for office here in NY:

    Here’s her video -worth watching

  14. Good morning, Moosekind! It’s so nice to hear what we Meese are up to, all across the country. This morning there’s a “mackerel” sky of cirrus clouds in NoVa and we might even get some rain after we’re all in bed. Bummer. I like to hear it falling. It’s 33 F. now, going up to 55 F. later.

    Could not sleep until 3 a.m. because I worry so much about getting everything done. Also, I think I’m getting a cold, which doesn’t help. Today will be another mad day of scramble-scramble-scramble so I’ll keep this short. Will be thinking of you all and hoping that things are going well, at least in your personal lives.

    Yesterday we enjoyed a spectacular winter sunset here, and when I saw the thin silver crescent of moon, I bowed to Her three times. Miss Pink Cheeks and I were walking around the street at the time, delivering Christmas goodies. Winter Solstice for me was a time of quiet gratitude—hope it was for you as well.

    Blessed be all at the Pond and Beyond!

    • Our winter sunsets are also quite beautiful. Even the local TV station took time to remark on what was about 4 days in a row of breathtaking sunsets a couple of weeks ago. I love the look through the leafless trees – in winter every branch’s personality is on display, not covered by greenery. :)

      Today I will hunt and gather for our holiday meal which we will have either this evening or tomorrow. Since we can’t celebrate right on the Solstice because it is not an official holiday for either school or work, we can choose the day.

      I hope you get a nap!

    • {{{Diana}}} – for the incipient cold, Healing Energy, 500 mg vitamin C every couple of hours and throw a fist of garlic into whatever savoury dish you are having for dinner. Hope your day is less scrambled than you think it will be (scrambled is good for eggs and emergency responses from the Air National Guard but not much else).

      I saw the moon last night for the first time in days – being that yesterday was the only cloudless day in the middle of a week of cloudiness – and sent Love and Healing Energy to everyone under Her. Then came inside and read the promising news on Aji’s blog. Signs and Wonders – we have survived the Darkness, we have passed the turning point and are heading into the Light as well as light. Blessed Be. moar {{{HUGS}}} and Healing Energy.

  15. Slept in — off & on. Still warm here, supposed to cool down tomorrow & maybe be freezing by Christmas. Watching the news, going to clean house today, finally going to fix those shoe shelves. But for now, relaxing. Stephanie Ruhle is going to interview Jill Stein so I’m switching to local news.

    • {{{anotherdemocrat}}} – relaxing is good – sleep knits back the ravel’d sleeve of care but relaxing at least stops more unraveling. moar {{{HUGS}}} and Healing Energy.

  16. 44 and really overcast – the PV system is just barely on. Got 7 KWHs yesterday and the m-t-d is 125.8 – I seriously doubt it will make it to 127 today. The temps are slowly dropping over the course of the day and I really need to get outside and bring a bunch of wood onto the porch because we are not scheduled for anything above 45 or any sunshine for the next week. I’ve some errands to run I didn’t know I’d need to run (my GF-flour order finally came in so I need to go get it) and a trip this afternoon to my older son’s house – his youngest son is 13 today.

    It’s a workday that I wouldn’t be working anyway as the university is closed through the end of the year. Still feels strange but doesn’t feel “retired” yet. :) Need to get to work before the temps drop lower and the wind picks up. I’ll check back later. Bright the day, Meeses. {{{HUGS}}}

      • yeah, definitely brrrrr! It’s raining, so dark my PV is system is back in night mode, 33 and still dropping. I really shouldn’t have been driving but having gotten over to my son’s house for my grandson’s birthday party I did have to get home again. (I left early and just got home a few minutes ago.) Get warm if you’re not and stay warm if you are. moar {{{HUGS}}}

  17. Good morning, 32 and partly cloudy in Bellingham. We had a dusting of snow yesterday so I’m glad to see some pinky blue sky this morning. One more busy day of Christmas prep and then the family dinners commence. Everyone’s schedule is different this year so we’ll be together in smaller groups and at different times.

    Time to find my warm clothes and finish the flower fun I started yesterday. Best wishes to all.

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