Winter Squirrels

winter squirrel

(Many newcomers and browsers here have wondered what the deal is here with the constant squirrel comments. I will let our own Beckita explain the time line:

By Beckita

The inception of squirrels into our conversations actually began in the comments following Charlie’s major post, “Soldiers of Christ; Missionaries of Mercy,” on November 15,2015. There is mutual responsibility for this burgeoning, nearly out-of-control interest in the critters. As in any sprawling family, each of us remembers how it all came to be from our personal lens. From how I see it, YD is the “Adam of the Squirrel Talk.” (We could also name him, “King of Roadkill.”) I’m going to illustrate my perspective with initial comments made in the thread.

You see, MP has had a long history on this site in employing elements from his nature treks as wonderful analogies for spiritual reflection. YongDuk beautifully acknowledged so on November 15, 2015 at 2:17 pm: ” I laugh with you, Michael Patrick! God takes you on such simple paths out to the woods. Much like Beckita said… And there is your place of learning and meditation and then you encourage us to get out and meditate amongst others and nature! pace bece, mio fatre!”

At 5:28pm, MP responded with an equally beautiful reply which began with: “YD, I find a bunch of similarities between the Adoration Chapel and the wilderness. Thank God for Charlie and NSR’ers encouraging one another to be a little reflection of Our Lord, Who we encounter there, to our fellow man wherever we encounter him…”

A little later that evening, YongDuk said: “You and I would agree on the Wilderness and Eucharistic Adoration Chapel! I typed a long reply but lost it. It ends that I took a 2 hour bike ride to pray and thought of you too, *but it was a squirrel killed by a car.* My thought was that you too probably prayed for the poor creature. I wondered if Doug did too and concluded that he probably would. (You and I might go more speculative theological and lament that it doesn’t have a soul and yet ask God to take it to Heaven nonetheless.)”

At this point on that evening of fond remembrance, 11-15-15, I fell off my computer chair in complete hysteria, laughing with joy-filled tears rolling. Thus: Beckita says: November 15, 2015 at 10:08 pm: Mmm, stir-fried squirrel for dinner!

Followed by: Doug says: November 15, 2015 at 10:10 pm “Hmmmmmm. Critters in heaven? Now that can be an interesting theological discussion…”

Followed by: Michael Patrick says: November 15, 2015 at 11:36 pm “Dead squirrel, eh? Ha! You do realize the American Coot (Fulica americana) is an actual water bird and I wasn’t simply making an ‘old coot’ jab, Young Duck…”

The ongoing interjections about squirrels have elevated them to NRS

white squirrel

I’m dreaming of a white…squirrel??

mascot status, evoked silly songs, poetry, wisdom sayings, analogical points, jokes and puns, in addition to becoming inspiration for shared personal stories, a focus for Christmas tree ornaments and theological points made. I’m willing to wager they have been a source of irritation, eye-rolling and perhaps outright revulsion for some. But hey! We’re family and sometimes the idiosyncrasies of brothers and sisters draw us into growth in virtue.

 

St. Paul says it best: As God’s chosen ones, holy and beloved, clothe yourselves with compassion, kindness, humility, meekness, and patience. Bear with one another and, if anyone has a complaint against another, forgive each other; just as the Lord has forgiven you, so you also must forgive. Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful. (Colossians 3:12-15)

*******

As I have mentioned, when I was a teenager, we had two pet squirrels for a while. They were hilarious and playful. They would go chasing after each other, then would sweep up one of my legs, across my shoulders, and down the other leg, It felt weird, but cool and funny. Cracked me up AND delighted me every time. When I was on my pilgrimage walking across the country, squirrels were playing with or chittering at me constantly. Usually, animals would take off when I pulled out a camera, but occasionally one stuck around for a bit. Austin squirrelThis squirrel at the right started chittering at me from a fork in a tree in Austin, Texas and would not shut up. In Loveland, Colorado, I woke up one morning to hear what sounded like intermittent hail pounding the top of my tent. It was actually a squirrel on a branch above me bombarding  my tent with acorns, little sticks and stones.

When I first started this website, I was considering writing a piece entitled “Winter Squirrels,” contemplating how playful, occasionally irritable, always sociable – depending on their fellows for common defense, and how prudent they are. they store things away to get through the winter without losing their playfulness. So when the squirrel motif took off here, I indulged it because I like it – and I think they are perfect mascots for this site. Now we turn to Doug to give some more reasons why squirrels are toptally awesome!-CJ

By Doug

Here is a re-stated history on the squirrels here on TNRS:

The squirrel got its start from one of Yong Duk’s posts back on Charlie’s November 14 Post. You can find it in the achieves. Let me know if you cannot find it. Basically, YD was writing a response to a post by Michael Patrick who is fantastic at writing imagery of nature and commenting about God’s adoration chapel in nature. YD lost his reply after writing. He ended with that he went for a 2 hour bike ride and saw a squirrel road kill. At the time I read this, I caught a squirrel eating out of my bird feeder and commented that he is being fattened up for when I need to shoot him for food during the storm. Well, that started a chain reaction of hilarious squirrel comments that have included camp fire squirrels songs and squirrely behavior that has kept going to date. As such, the squirrel has sort of morphed into the TNRS mascot. Some of us are even going out to buy squirrel ornaments for our Christmas trees.

As I reflect on this, I think the squirrel is a great representation of TNRS. Here are some reasons:
1) The squirrel spends its time in the warm season gathering nuts for the long stormy winter. We are preparing here temporally and spiritually for the storm like the squirrel gathering its nuts.
2) The squirrel will unsuspectingly twitch its tail to warn other squirrels about impending danger. As preparation for the storm, we are building each other up here and helping take The Next Right Step to do God’s will and help our fellow brothers and sisters through the dangers of the storm.
3) Squirrels are very trusting animals and remind us that we will need to be entirely dependent on God and totally trust him as we progress through the furry, I mean fury of the storm.
4) Squirrels tend to run in erratic paths. This is intended to deceive potential predators as to its chosen direction so that it may escape. We may need this tactic during the storm to evade the dangers and traps of the evil one. Of course, the down side of this is potential indecision that often turns squirrels into road kill…..
5) The squirrel is the Native American symbol for preparation, trust and thriftiness.
6) This may be unpopular to some folks, but squirrels are a good food source if during the storm conventional means of acquiring food is scarce.
7) Squirrels are playful and humorous of which we have much here that builds us up as family on Charlie’s blog (later addition from Steve BC).
8) Squirrels are so cuddly cute and furry. How can anyone not like a squirrel?

About charliej373

Charlie Johnston is a former newspaper editor, radio talk show host and political consultant. From Feb. 11, 2011 to Aug. 21, 2012, he walked 3,200 miles across the country, sleeping in the woods, meeting people and praying as he went. He has received prophetic visitation all his life, which he has vetted through a trio of priests over the last 20 years, and now speaks publicly about on this site. Yet he emphasizes that we find God most surely through the ordinary, doing the little things we should with faith and fidelity. Hence the name, The Next Right Step. The visitations inform his work, but are not the focus of it. He lives in the Archdiocese of Denver in the United States.
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316 Responses to Winter Squirrels

  1. Simone says:

    I love this family!!! You’re all nuts!!

    Liked by 14 people

  2. prayingflower says:

    “Squirrels are so cuddly cute and furry. Can anyone not like a squirrel?”
    Hear, Hear!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Petra says:

      “Squirrels are so cuddly cute and furry. Can anyone not like a squirrel?”
      Well…… I would say yes.
      A few years back we heard the pitter patter of little feet in the attic as we sat watching T.V., and knew, just knew, it could only be one thing…squirrels. So upstairs I went, and saw evidence of them. All kinds of stuff torn up. I went outside to see where they had gotten in. There was a hole in the fascia board, right next to the chimney (oh, nice and warm!). And as I watched I saw 3 or 4 baby squirrels coming out into the gutter, and then scamper back through the hole into the attic at the slightest sign of danger (like a robin flying by!). I went upstairs to chase them out so I could close up the hole, but it was at the very end of a very narrow crawl space, and I it took me forever (probably 2 hours), while on my belly no less, trying to close that hole up from the inside.

      A few years later, again is heard the scampering of little feet above. So my brother went outside to examine the outer fascia boards just under the roof and saw a small hole midway down the length of the house. He saw a squirrel leave. So I went upstairs and did my best to scare out anyone who may be still hiding up there, but saw and heard nothing. we figured the squirrel was out, so my brother got out the extension ladder and proceeded to board up the hole.

      A few days later I happened to look at the roof, at the corner where the side meets the front, and there was another hole, and here was mama squirrel, coming out with a little baby in her mouth. Ey yie yie!!! She had been so desperate to get to them, she tore a new hole to get to her kits. We waited a day for her to finish her desperate rescue, then again out came the extension ladder to board up the newer hole.

      As touching as these stories may seem, the mess the squirrels made upstairs, along with the things they tore up up there (Christmas wrap, a box of baseball cards, an old couch) was not a happy thing. So, squirrels are nice as long as they stay in trees. I know, they just want to live somewhere warm, but sorry, I don’t want to turn our upstairs into a squirrel condominium complex.

      And please, don’t get me started about the racoon who broke through the bricks of the chimney to live in the attic….. 🙂

      I love nature and God’s creatures, but please, not to live with me inside!

      God bless.

      Liked by 8 people

      • Ed Allison says:

        Petra, I love all God’s creatures too! (I hope this works)
        https://c1.staticflickr.com/1/151/358317592_868aa124e5_z.jpg?zz=1

        Liked by 7 people

      • Doug says:

        Petra, on the serious side, God may be preparing you for the storm when you may have to accommodate some folks that will need help. On the lighter side, I wish squirrels ate mice as my attic which has cellulose for insulation (cellulose is a fancy name for shredded news paper) is habitrail for mice 😉

        Liked by 3 people

        • Petra says:

          Doug: 🙂 Well, I hope the people I would offer accommodations to wouldn’t punch a hole in the fascia to get in, tear apart and chew whatever paper and cellulose and stuffing they can find, and run back and forth chasing each other all hours of the day and night, (not to mention having a set of triplets or quintuplets while up there). 🙂 I really could let them in the front door and provide airbeds and bedding. 🙂

          Oh…or were you suggesting the the squirrels would be a handy source of food for myself and anyone sheltering with me? 😀

          Someone told me that once a squirrel gets in and lives inside for a while, even if you kick it out and seal up the hole, it will return and chew a new way in. So I guess it’s best to make sure they are out as quickly as you become aware of them. But if I was hungry….well, I’d drill squirrel size holes myself in the fascia board, and hang a Home Sweet Home sign next to them!

          God bless, and Merry Christmas!!

          Liked by 5 people

          • Doug says:

            Well. I think the analogy may not be too far off. We are so used to having our own private space and when folks stay with us for long periods of the storm, it will seem like our space has been invaded. This will be a burning up of some of our vanity and God teaching us true charity and neighborliness. It will be a humbling process; not necessarily one we want to go through (me included). Merry Christmas Petra!

            Liked by 3 people

      • Petra, I think they just saw your house as a big tree. You know I love critters, but I’ll admit to drawing the line at bats. When I was a kid, I always went to sleep with a badminton racket within arms reach during the summer months… and it sure wasn’t because I loved playing badminton.

        Liked by 3 people

        • charliej373 says:

          You must admit that would add an entirely new dimension to the game, MP.

          Like

        • zeniazenia says:

          Ha!

          Like

        • Mick says:

          Yep, MP; at our house, it was tennis rackets.

          Like

        • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

          Awww MP, Bats are just like mice with wings- when they get into my house I catch them and calm them down and they crawl all over my hands, then I release them outside (my husband runs out of the room like a rocket! He hates them haha 🙂 Men are such chickens when it comes to bats and mice! The ones we have here are the little brown bats, their mouths are too small to bite, which is good, but most don’t even try. I do the same with the deer mice that get in here, they are very cute! They are intelligent little buggers and they are quite fun. I saved a momma deer mouse with her 2 babies in an aquarium until they were grown enough to release and later one of the babies got into the house and sat next to the TV watching us watch TV. I laughed for a week because my husband just about lost it when he saw the little guy sitting there. I had to catch him and let him outside.

          Liked by 5 people

    • Joseph77 says:

      Prayingflower,
      I’ve been silent up to this time but I have to speak out and I do not offer any apologies to anyone for the following comments: I hate squirrels! 38 years and counting, I have been at war with these glorified rats with bushy tails. The dangerous rodents invaded my home and took up residence in my attic,terrifying my family with their scurrying across the ceiling at night. These not-so-cute terrorists chewed their way through the insulation and nested with a brood of their little vermin. Then, the dangerous pests built a nest of branches and leaves in my chimney causing a fire which the local firemen had to put out.

      We loved the beautiful birds which nested in the nearby trees and built a feeder for them and water to drink and bath. And of course the squirrels invaded and ate all the seed.and scared the birds away. And when I put out tomato plants the bushy-tailed rats would run up the stalks and eat the fruit and if vegetable or flower bulbs were planted the pests would dig them up and have a feast. My dog would go absolutely bonkers when the rats would dare venture on the property. The only bushy-tailed rats that I ever liked was when they were roadkill. I think all squirrels in residential areas should be rounded up and placed in forests where people who live off the land could hunt them for food! There I got it off my chest!

      Liked by 9 people

      • charliej373 says:

        I have a friend, a good woman and faithful nun, who just doesn’t like kids. I give thanks for her many virtues anyway. I also give thanks for your many virtues, Joseph.

        (Warning, if you’re at Joseph’s and it tastes like chicken…take care. It may be Kentucky-Fried TNRS Mascot.)

        Liked by 6 people

      • zeniazenia says:

        Hi Joseph, this is exactly why I think the mascot is such a hoot for TNRS. Everyone has a reaction, not to mention the road kill. Here are the lyrics to our song!:
        **All God’s creatures have a place in the choir,
        Some sing low, some sing higher,
        Some sing out loud on the telephone wire,
        Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got now! **
        Listen to the bass it’s the one on the bottom
        Where the bullfrog croaks, the hippopotamus
        Moans and groans with a big to-do,
        The old cow just goes “Moo!’.
        The dogs and the cats they take up the middle
        As the honey bee hums, the cricket fiddles
        The donkey brays and the pony neighs
        The old grey badger sighs.
        **All God’s creatures have a place in the choir,
        some sing low, some sing higher,
        Some sing out loud on the telephone wire,
        Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got now! **
        Listen to the top and the little birds singing
        The melody with the high notes ringin’
        The good owl sighs over everything,
        The blackbird disagrees.
        Singin’ in the night time, singin’ in the day
        Little duck quacks and he’s on his way
        And the otter hasn’t got that much to say
        The porqupine talks to himself.
        **All God’s creatures have a place in the choir,
        some sing low, some sing higher,
        Some sing out loud on the telephone wire,
        Some just clap their hands, or paws, or anything they’ve got now! **
        It’s a simple song a living song everywhere
        By the ox the fox and the grizzly bear
        The grumpy alligator and the hawk above
        The sly old weasel and turtle dove. 🙂

        Liked by 5 people

        • Thanks, ZZ. Of course I was kidding earlier about being new here, but at the same time that I always feel right at home, there’s also a certain ‘newness’ every time I visit. It reminds me of reading the Gospels. I can read (and reread for the 1000th time) a parable where I encounter a real sense of Home, Newness and Infinite Wisdom I just can’t fully grasp… no matter how much I read and contemplate.

          Well, you’ve given us a parable once again. Thanks for the Christmas gift. It’s priceless!

          Wish I had more, but drawing a blank. I’ll just leave it with one of Charlie’s previous exhortations: “Go Forth!” May we all truly Live It with Joy and Praise Him in all things!

          A Blessed Christmas to you all.

          MP, unabashed squirrel friend

          Liked by 4 people

      • Mick says:

        Joseph, I can empathize. We’ve never had a squirrel problem; but when I was growing up, we had bats. We lived in an ancient house that somehow frequently had bats in the attic. They would not infrequently end up flying around the living room, dining room,and (shudder) our bedrooms in the middle of the night. I know that they eat tons and tons of bugs and such, but I loathe them.

        Still, I couldn’t help but chuckle at the way you describe the little terrorist rats that have plagued you all these years. Not that I find the incidents funny, but I find your description hilarious. You write like a professional satirist.

        Merry Christmas! 🙂

        Liked by 5 people

      • SteveBC says:

        Joseph77, my father also hated squirrels, and because he was too soft-hearted to kill them when they invaded his patch of corn, he stopped growing us fresh corn. As mascots for this community, they have much to offer, and I’m happy that their positive characteristics and spirit show up often here.

        Like little boys, though, they can get into trouble and get into *everything* if you don’t watch ’em. 😀

        Liked by 6 people

      • prayingflower says:

        Oh, Joseph and Petra, we’ve had our days. I used to feed them close to the house. One day I came home to the aftermath of a party on our screened patio. They had chewed the screen and had their fill of the food. I stopped feeding at that point. But when we planted our corn in a new location a few feet away from a tree that two squirrels lived in we kept discovering the corn missing. I watched as the two little buggers scurried down the tree, cut the stalks off at their knees and dragged the whole thing up the tree. Over and over. I put Irish Spring soap all around the raised beds but instead of being repelled by it I found them soaping their armpits and singing, “All God’s Critters Got a Place in the Choir!” We’ve had them in our attic also but after we trimmed the branches hanging over the house we didn’t have that problem anymore. The albino squirrel was an angel, tho. Never gave us a moment’s grief. I sympathize, really.

        Liked by 4 people

        • Beckita says:

          HaHaHaHa, Prayingflower with an extra HoHoHoHoHo! The nerve of soaping their armits in broad daylight! The audacity! They could have at least broken into an Irish jig with that treat you left them. So sorry you don’t have some footage to share.

          Liked by 1 person

          • prayingflower says:

            Ha! I guess maybe I would have footage if the soapy part of the story was as true as the corn part. It was pouring down rain that day and I was so beside myself at that point that I think this mental image of them is what God gave me to help me overcome my frustration with the whole incident. I do so admire their cunningness and tenacity and seeming joie de vivre. I guess that’s why I forgive them so much. The experts said Irish Spring would work. It didn’t. Nothing works on squirrels because they never give up. I aspire to that. Especially during the Storm. Merry Christmas everyone from Very Squirrel and me. And thank you, Yong Duk, for the Tridentine Mass. Until we meet again, “God bless Us Every One!”

            Liked by 3 people

          • Beckita says:

            Totally teasing about the footage, Prayingflower. Your own jesting evoked a mighty grin.

            Like

          • prayingflower says:

            I know you were teasing, Beckita. I must tell you, though, last night when “not a creature was stirring … and Pa in his stocking and I in my cap had just settled down for a long winter’s nap,” I suddenly had this little reel running in my head and those little critters were doing the Irish Jig! I burst out laughing at the sight of it and laughed until I fell asleep. Thanks for that very humorous picture. This morning when I “threw open the sash” the first thing I saw was a squirrel. I thought of everyone here and said a prayer. I named him/her Hope. I stepped out the door and saw his/her playmate and I named him/her Glory. The next one I named Victory. Some day in heaven we will all have a new name. God Is With Us!

            Liked by 4 people

          • Beckita says:

            Thanks for sharing your Christmas Eve and Morning Joy, Prayingflower!

            Liked by 1 person

  3. Phillip Frank says:

    The popular Chipmunks Chip and Dale and Alvin and the Chipmunks are actually based on a native species of ground squirrel so our culture here in America side with reason # 8 that squirrels are cuddly and cute.

    Liked by 3 people

  4. Mary says:

    I would like to make a tiny addition on the squirrel comments. Where I live they are white! Legend has it that a circus truck was passing through our little hamlet and it overturned. Well, the rest is history. We do now have some squirrels that are both grey and white. : – )

    Liked by 3 people

  5. 1950model says:

    I love this squirrel connection with us preparing and living through the Storm. I felt the presence of God inviting me to read Doug’s comments..with it being Dec 23rd, I have a few other things I could be doing 🙂 but God wanted me reading this wisdom and humour of the squirrel connection in Charlie’s, “Abraham’s Journey” , now very comparable to the Squirrel’s Journey. I love the humour, we need it !
    MARY CHRIST MASS everyone, especially to Charlie!
    We still have a bit of snow in Moncton.
    Have a white Christmas in our hearts !

    Liked by 11 people

  6. Ed Allison says:

    Presented without comment:

    Liked by 15 people

    • charliej373 says:

      This is so hilarious it needs no comment, Ed. I LOVE it.

      Liked by 4 people

      • LukeMichael says:

        Ed
        Hilarious is inadequate to describe this. I’m beginning to have serious doubts about the migration of the magnetic poles!
        By the way when the pole switch is accomplished, do you know if the toilet water circles in the opposite direction as it goes down?

        Liked by 10 people

        • Ed Allison says:

          LM, yes…. I believe it would!

          Liked by 4 people

        • Beckita says:

          Laughing and giggling, LukeMichael. What a farewell comment before traveling!

          Liked by 4 people

        • SteveBC says:

          Ah, guys, sorry to disappoint you on the water circling. To change that would require a physical flipping of the poles. It’s not a magnetic phenomenon, so a flip of the magnetic poles will have no effect. It’s a physical spin phenomenon. Merry Christmas anyway! 🙂

          Liked by 4 people

          • Doug says:

            Yes. You are correct steve.

            Like

          • Ed Allison says:

            OK, Steve, I may have to give you that one…. But dogs will circle in the opposite direction before laying down!!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Steve BC, I’ve run out of honorific titles for you in my head, so I’ve distilled it to resident Doctor of Letters. That probably falls short though.

            God Bless your continued studies,

            MP

            Liked by 3 people

          • SteveBC says:

            Ahhh, Ed, that *might* be true about dogs, but what *could* actually be true is that if the pole shift happens quickly enough in the late fall, migrating birds (which use the earth’s magnetic field for navigation) might find themselves circling in right-hand holding patterns in the Northern Hemisphere and left-hand holding patterns in the Southern Hemisphere during the three days of magnetic darkness and then reversing course and heading back the wrong way after the pole shift kicks in. It will be so sudden that the northern hemisphere birds will still want to go the the South magnetic pole, but that pole will have shifted to the physical North pole region, so they will reverse course and fly *northward* to the Arctic in time for winter, when they had thought they’d arrive in the Caribbean or South America. Boy will they be confused! 😀

            Liked by 2 people

          • SteveBC says:

            Michael Patrick, thank you for your very kind words. I hope you enjoy my added comment about migrating birds, just above. 😀

            Liked by 1 person

          • Beckita says:

            Steve, could you please illustrate that last comment to Ed concerning migration patterns?

            Liked by 2 people

          • SteveBC says:

            Actually, Beckita, I think I got the rotations wrong, but let me try illustrating.

            Imagine yourself as a duck flying south for the winter in November, leaving the Arctic and arriving over the northern US just as the magnetic field of the Earth drops suddenly to zero for the Three Days of Magnetic Darkness. You had been heading toward the south magnetic pole of the Earth at the South Pole, but now there’s no field at all. Of course, you could navigate by eyesight, but many birds navigate along the magnetic field lines, which run north-south.

            For three days of magnetic darkness, what do you do? You circle in confusion.

            Then the magnetic field comes back up. Humans know that the field has flipped, but you don’t – you’re just a duck. So if you were heading for the South magnetic pole when it was in the south (Antarctica), what would you, a duck, do when the South magnetic pole becomes located in the north (the Arctic)? If you were used to flying south along the magnetic field line flowing toward the south magnetic pole, would you suddenly say to yourself, “Whoa, the South magnetic pole is now behind me!?!?!? What the heck?” So you would turn around and fly north back to the Arctic, thinking you were still flying south to the Caribbean.

            Of course, we know that birds fly *along* the magnetic field lines (or approximately so) from north to south in the Fall. As far as I know, they aren’t really able to distinguish the South magnetic pole from the North one. That means that you, a duck, would indeed be confused during the Three Days of Magnetic Darkness and might fly pretty aimlessly around during those three days. Once the magnetic field reconstituted itself on the third day, the magnetic field lines would return and “feel” the same to the duck’s field-reading brain, and you would say, “Well, *that’s* more like it!” and continue on south.

            I don’t think ducks can distinguish between the south and north magnetic *poles*, so my little conceit here would not actually occur. They would likely be confused when the field strength has gone to zero, but the return of the lines would get them back on track in the right direction.

            I hope you enjoyed this little interlude of being a Beckita-duck!

            Liked by 1 person

          • Doug says:

            The tragedy may be confused theology of Young DUCK. When the poles are realigned, what can we expect him to wax eloquently on? Oh, this would be most tragic.

            Or, this could be God’s way of taking care of us in the storm. The confused ducks may crash into the side of our houses and fall to our feet as food. 🙂

            Liked by 7 people

          • Ed Allison says:

            “Or, this could be God’s way of taking care of us in the storm. The confused ducks may crash into the side of our houses and fall to our feet as food. 🙂 ”

            Yes, probably precooked after being struck by lightning!

            Liked by 7 people

          • Doug says:

            Yes Ed! You are right. The pole realignment will cause a zillion lightening strikes and cook them all too. I love it!

            Liked by 2 people

          • Beckita says:

            Can you hear it, Steve? It’s a cyber gong sounding as symbol of the great honor bestowed upon you as Master and Revered Teacher. I’m bowing with its resonance, in gratitude that you took the time to instruct me in such a pleasant, meaningful way. Thank you. I think you’ve got another Caldecott Medal in the making with this tale.

            My only concern as a Beckita-Duck is that I might be on possible collision course with Yong Duk and, trust me, it could become quite tempting to swirl those hair extensions right around my ever-loving neck. I just don’t know.

            PS Steve: Would you ever believe I was a female minority in science classes, in fact one of 3 young ladies in my high school physics class back in the day? I was following a dream to become a doctor and enter the Medical Mission Sisters order in hopes of heading to Africa one day. Somehow the poles in my right brain-left brain existence flipped and it seems I abandoned everything available in left brain training for all things right brain. Oh the adventures!

            Liked by 2 people

          • YongDuk says:

            This Young Duck has enough wax candles and that one Scapula and a few other odds and ends for the Three Days of Magnetic or Other Darkness and then a backpack and bike rack and waterproof bags for his liturgical books and a couple (5,000) unconsecrated hosts and Consecrated Oils from the Chrism Mass, etc, so while the rest of my duck brethren may be circling around or flying into walls, I am going to be taking the next right step staying put or going out…

            Liked by 8 people

          • charliej373 says:

            By gum, if I get a hankering for a physical communion, I know where to head. Your new motto, YD, can be, “Have hosts, will consecrate.”

            Liked by 5 people

          • Doug says:

            Now that is true Catholic prepping!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Beckita says:

            Great planning, YD! We’re thinking about a great harvest and just ordered 10 cases of Angelica altar wine, being delivered soon by friends from the big city. (Postage on those bottles would have been a hefty chuck of change.) in addition 40,000 small hosts have just arrived, prepared by some good Polish Sisters in New Jersy. Let the reversions and conversions ensue!

            Liked by 4 people

          • YongDuk says:

            40,000 is wonderful. I haven’t had any inspiration on how many to have in my Chapel. But I figure they can be broken in quarters.

            I also switched to port as it keeps longer. Marsala is the best for humid conditions.

            I also use very little in my chalice so a small travel bottle lasts two months to give an idea. The Tridentine uses more with the ablutions.

            Liked by 3 people

          • SteveBC says:

            Beckita, you’ve given me a good laugh! I should let you know that my great aunt followed a similar path. She was the first woman to graduate from Johns Hopkins with a Ph.D. in Physics, somewhere around 1910. She shifted over to teaching, becoming a professor at the women’s college near me where I grew up, becoming the acting dean there during WW2. She was much beloved by all. The undergrads’ favorite of her courses was Auto Mechanic Repair, believe it or not! She loved cars and was also an airplane pilot (small planes) for fun at one point. When I was a kid, before Christmas she would invite me to walk over to her house to make a Christmas project each year. When she was about 90 years old and mostly deaf, she asked me to come by and explain how computer chips worked. I don’t think I did a very good job of that, unfortunately. She had to wear headphones when she came to visit us for dinner. She loved lobster. When the lobster was served, she would take off her headphones so we wouldn’t interrupt her while she dove into the food!

            Liked by 5 people

          • Beckita says:

            Ours is a chapel setting too, YD, and there are 4 major parishes in town with pastors who have not a clue and/or reject the opportunity, at this point, to explore the possibilities of what is coming. We may well be sharing and breaking. God knows best how to encompass these realities in His Great Plan. As all of us here, just trying to pay attention to that NRS and prepare as prudently as possible, ever open to the Holy Spirit’s nudges.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Beckita says:

            What a GREAT great aunt, Steve! She went far and above my studies in science. Now, in the area of diving into food, I’m sure I excel.

            Liked by 1 person

        • Doug says:

          When this happens, picture all the TNRSers bent over there toilets and flushing in unity to see if it is true.

          Liked by 6 people

          • Doug says:

            I was flushed into this error.

            Liked by 3 people

          • Beckita says:

            Oh Doug. Sooner rather than later, we’ll be wishing we had toilets to flush for a period of time!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Doug says:

            Well. The storm will be really bad if toilets are affected……..

            Liked by 2 people

          • charliej373 says:

            When I was on my pilgrimage, during extended periods in the wilderness, I did more than a little latrining. I’m good to go whatever.

            Liked by 5 people

          • SteveBC says:

            Beckita, back in late 2012 we had to replace our old septic system with a new one. The engineer wanted to put in a pump-assisted system dependent on electricity. I absolutely insisted that he design one that worked solely by gravity. I felt that a Storm was coming, and I wanted us to be able to worry less about sanitation. This was well before I ever heard of Charlie. Now we’re sittin’ pretty. 😀

            Liked by 7 people

          • Beckita says:

            WOW, Steve! How amazing is that?! Great inspiration on your part. However, once word gets out that flushing is uninterrupted in your space, I expect the toilet lines will be mighty long at your place… at least until the poles flip!

            Liked by 5 people

          • zeniazenia says:

            I only hope I won’t need to down to the pond fetching my daily (or more) flushing water.

            Liked by 3 people

          • YongDuk says:

            Remember, field defecation is the number one way to spread worms.

            (Just helpful spiritual hints, as always. This one comes from Africa!)

            Beckita, who are the Polish Sister’s in NJ where you bought your hosts? I headed to one of the local altar supply stores and bought some St. Louis brand. (Small as well, even though, I prefer the larger host for the sake of handling. But then again I figured by the time I have to use them, whomever would be receiving would be receiving most reverently.)

            I do not think it is at all crazy for some people here to consider having a VERY SMALL stash of wine and some hosts and the Daily Missal in case of emergency or after the Storm. Hosts are easy to make, of course. Flour, water and heat. However, those tend to be crumbly.

            I woke up one morning inspired to ask if I should for my own Chapel and then figured if I was asking, maybe that was the Lord prompting me. I brought some to my parents house as well…

            Did I answer this in the correct comment line or was this the line about latrines and helminths, Doug and Steve?

            Liked by 2 people

          • Doug says:

            Sorry YD, unusual thread to this comment line, but well taken. I will check with my pastor about storing hosts as well.

            I have heard it said by a mystical saint (St Catherine of Siena?) That if someone receives communion in a state of mortal sin that Jesus leaves almost immediately. Any comment on this from a theological perspective? God bless you!

            Liked by 3 people

          • Beckita says:

            Nice hint from life in Africa, YD. You’ve reiterated my first health instruction when I was upcountry in the bush.

            Here’s the altar bread link: http://www.oplatki.com/Altarbreadordpp.html What an excellent inspiration to suggest that those who can add hosts and wine to their prepper supplies.

            I believe the Servant of God Cardinal Van Thuan will be a powerful intercessor for us as we make our way through the Storm. Evokes tears and wonder when I consider how he used his palm as an altar when he said Mass with the drops of wine that had been smuggled into him as “stomach medicine” during his imprisonment.

            Liked by 2 people

          • Mick says:

            YD and Beckita, I greatly appreciate this discussion about altar wine and hosts as a potential part of preps for the Storm. I clicked on the link that Beckita provided, and I saw at the top of the page that these Sisters provide their altar breads to clergy and religious. In the event that they may not also sell to laypeople, here is a link to some Cistercian nuns in Wisconsin, who do sell to the laity as well as to clergy/religious:

            http://www.nunocist.org/altarbreads.html

            Like

          • Beckita says:

            Great to have another link, Mick! For clarification, when I order from the link I provided, I do so as a a lay person with my personal CC without any problems. I’m so glad YD thought of recommending this idea.

            Like

      • Beckita says:

        So true, Charlie. For me it will be a return to Peace Corps times + 4o years. In those days we traveled into the bush via the old Datsun pickups, money buses, with a skinny slat bench on either side, luggage piled high on the roof and people stuffed inside beyond capacity and oh! pick up your feet so the goats and chickens can manage to fit under your legs for the journey. When we stopped along the way, people would simply hop off and squat along the roadside; no one looked or cared. It was when this white-faced lady thought to walk a bit into the forest to take cover behind a bush or tree that the passengers were peering, stretching necks to see what the heck that young lady was doing out there.

        Liked by 3 people

    • Doug says:

      Absolutely hilarious Ed! FOCAL — Falling Off Chair And Laughing 🙂

      Liked by 2 people

    • prayingflower says:

      Too funny!!!

      Liked by 2 people

    • zeniazenia says:

      This squirrel has a stunning coat!

      Liked by 3 people

  7. anthonymullendivineantidote says:

    I giggled when I saw YD named as King of Roadkill. There is a wonderfully playful song by my cousin John Flynn, entitled the “Roadkill Cafe”. Please do give it a listen on youtube. The lyrics will make some of you smile; others maybe not so much. He also has a fabulous song about The Lord called “They Laid Him Down”. See what you think. The Lord has indeed allowed His Divine Mercy to extend well beyond the time we would have! How incredible is His Love and Mercy! Blessed Christmas to each of you. Let us build our city together for Heaven!

    >

    Liked by 4 people

  8. Phillip Frank says:

    Ray Stevens – Mississippi Squirrel Revival song Predates evangelical squirrliness here.
    The song is centered in the “First Self-Righteous Church” in the sleepy little town of Pascagoula in Mississippi, (the same town my mother grew up in.)
    If a simple squirrel can affect such a change in just a few minutes by its furry-scurry presence, I see no reason why it shant happen here!
    If someone can link to the song here it would be appreciated….I could not.

    Liked by 3 people

  9. little one in PA says:

    Ever since the squirrel posts started… I haven’t looked at squirrels the same since!
    And I see them everywhere I go! And lurking in my mind is the awful thought…that may be dinner someday soon. In the meantime, I appreciate their beauty and admire their industry! I’m glad the NRS family now has a Mascot. I’m not going to even ask where you found squirrel ornaments! Merry Christmas!

    Liked by 5 people

  10. Denise Eagan says:

    Two years ago I bought my husband a squirrel ornament as a joke trying to make him reflect on the squirrels he has hunted over the years. Now I have a new meaning for this ornament and will think of this family and what we need to do every time I look at it. It might just get to stay out when all the other ornaments get stored for next year.

    Liked by 6 people

  11. Interesting blog you all have here. Squirrels, eh? Since I’m new, it will probably take me some time to go back through the archives so I can come up to speed on the entire topic/thread.

    Charlie has been the only one I ever had a real voice for (from the videos). Somewhere along the line, the voice of Mr. Ping got stuck in my head for YD. Now with Ed’s video, I’ve suddenly got a voice stuck in my head for Doug. Sorry. Can’t seem to shake it. It’s Ed’s fault. Ed, I’ve watched it a dozen times and I’m still laughing.

    God Bless,

    MP

    Liked by 4 people

  12. YongDuk says:

    Love it… one and all! Well, maybe not the “King of Roadkill,” unless “Priest, Prophet and King of Roadkill by Baptism?”

    Liked by 5 people

  13. Mick says:

    Hee hee! Awesome!

    YD, we hereby christen thee “Priest, Prophet, and King of Roadkill.” Now can we all get a Christmas blessing from our favorite Flying Bishop?

    Liked by 7 people

    • Doug says:

      I second that Mick! YD, does the church allow for a remote priestly blessing? I assume not since my understanding is confession cannot be done over the phone. I look forward to your wise and squirrelly answer.

      Liked by 2 people

    • YongDuk says:

      I will offer my midnight Tridentine Mass for this community

      …and I will send a flying squirrel like little bunny foo-foo to bop you on the head to wake you up for the blessing or at least get your attention, Mick 🙂 (Given Peter’s [The Pope’s] Universal Authority, his Ubi et Orbi “travels ” throughout the world. Not sure what the range is for a flying squirrel, yet alone for a flying bishop–thus the hair extensions.)

      O magnum mysterium,
      et admirabile sacramentum,
      ut animalia viderent Dominum natum,
      iacentem in praesepio!
      Beata Virgo, cuius viscera
      meruerunt portare
      Dominum Christum.
      Alleluia.

      Liked by 9 people

      • charliej373 says:

        How wonderful, YD! My first real Mass (though I was still a Protestant) was a midnight Mass at St. Anne’s in Barrington, Illinois. I was 15 or 16 and had a contract with the Archdiocese as a trumpet player. My stars, was that magnificent. The male soloist on “O Holy Night” was the best I have ever heard…and I have never felt so triumphantly joyful as I led the orchestra in Handeel’s “Hallelujah Chorus.” It was amazing….softened me up for my eventual reception into the Church, I think. But there is still nothing more sublime and magnificent as the Christmas Midnight Mass. In 2000, I was a trumpet player at the Cathedral in Belleville, Illinois – and then Bishop Gregory opened the Jubilee Doors at the Midnight Mass. Thank you. I will be with you in spirit.

        Liked by 11 people

      • Petra says:

        YongDuk said, “I will offer my midnight Tridentine Mass for this community.”
        Thank you YD! And may God bless you in all you do. Merry Christmas!

        Liked by 1 person

      • jlynnbyrd says:

        Bless you YD! Today I have been laughing and tearing up at the magnificence of the love and joy our TNRS family.
        Merry Christmas to all. https://t.co/7iVulm47Uv

        Liked by 4 people

      • Doug says:

        YD, I wish you a very Merry Christmas. I reiterate that you are an inspiration to me and all here. I am grateful for your insights, prayers , musings and hair extensions. I can imagine the flying squirrel sailing with you also having braided kung-fu hair extensions. Numbers 6:22.

        Liked by 2 people

      • Beckita says:

        How blessed are we, YD! Thank you so much!!! Enfolding you in prayer in special ways this Christmas night. (PS You know about Bunny Foo Foo too?! Amazing.)

        Liked by 3 people

        • YongDuk says:

          So honestly, how many got bopped on the head last night? (I was tempted to come back and write “bop”, but both the context and the moment would have been lost, just like why Charlie didn’t show up since I didn’t see his post saying he would come if Kitty could sing until too late [Evidently, High Mass Polyphony will all voices sung by one person is not so much his thing].)

          Liked by 3 people

          • Doug says:

            So that is what I felt in Mass last night….

            Liked by 1 person

          • YongDuk says:

            Hmmm… between 12:05 and 12:08 AM EST?

            People have told me that have felt when I was praying for them from far away (once or twice seen me), but never a bop on the head that anyone ever said.

            Liked by 1 person

          • Mick says:

            True story, YD: I woke up Christmas morning with a headache which lasted until about 2:00 pm. A simple bop would have sufficed to get my attention; you didn’t have to beat me. Kung fu squirrel, indeed! 🙂

            Liked by 4 people

      • Mick says:

        Thank you, YD. And I’m laughing my head off… I haven’t heard, or even thought of, Little Bunny Foo Foo in probably 35 years or more! Funny thing is, when I started singing it, the tune, the words, and the accompanying hand motions all came flooding back. Thanks for the trip down memory lane (and for the blessing, too, bop-on-the-head included). 🙂

        For those of you who aren’t familiar with Little Bunny Foo Foo, take a gander, if you wish:

        Unfortunately, this video is missing the punch line, which is, “Hare today, goon tomorrow.”

        Like

  14. Barb says:

    Squirrels make my heart happy!!! They are so energetic and fun!

    Liked by 5 people

  15. naisy says:

    Ha! Thanks:)

    Liked by 4 people

  16. donna says:

    In Princeton NJ we have beautiful fully black squirrels…..they are really unique! Remember #blacksquirrelsmatter 🙂

    Liked by 7 people

  17. Kris says:

    Squirrels are far more crafty than you might think….

    Liked by 8 people

  18. zeniazenia says:

    Thank you Beckia, Doug and Charlie for this narrative. Those posts about YDs 2 hour bike ride and MPs wilderness adoration chapel were the first ones I read on this site. haha. Just for the record, did we conclude that roast squirrel is tastier than the wild (Peter Rabbit cottontail type) rabbit? I have equal numbers in my yard. 🙂 –Jane

    Liked by 3 people

  19. Linda says:

    Charlie in Norwalk Ohio.. All our squirrels are black.. I grew up in Sandusky Ohio only 20 minutes away and they were all brown… I was shocked when I moved here 10 years ago… I wonder why they are black here???

    Liked by 5 people

  20. Katherine says:

    At first I thought this squirrel thing was weird. I still think it’s weird, but I have to admit it’s oddly effective: I think of Charlie and God whenever I see a squirrel. So . . . is this a win? Haha. Also, acorns make an excellent survival food, much better than trying to hunt squirrels. Acorns are a complete protein! Dry them in their shells and when you need them, take out the meats, grind them up, boil them and drain them (for red oak repeat that step like three times, white oak you only need to do once . . . red oak have pointy tips on their leaves) then dry out the mush and you’ve got acorn flour. #livelikesquirrels Have a very Merry Christmas everyone!

    Liked by 5 people

  21. Diane says:

    Charlie and family,
    When one of my brothers was about 7 or 8 years old he went hunting with an air gun in the woods by our neighborhood, he shot at a squirrel in a tree and it had a heart attack and fell over dead. My brother was so proud of his first kill. We still have a photo of him holding the squirrel by the tail in one hand and his trusty rifle in the other hand. It was quite the day for the master hunter. I seem to see more squirrels since the comments got sillier and sillier each week and I have to admit I also look at them differently and smile and say a quick prayer for you all. Looking foward to leaving work early today to get home and bake some pies, decorate cookies, fudge and hang with my kids and husband. We are all going to midnight mass tonight, what a blessing we all are to each other. Merry Christmas and may the joy of the Christ Child be in your heart, mind and soul. Once again I sign off with…Love. I do.

    Liked by 5 people

  22. anna819 says:

    Merry Christmas to all of my squirrel loving friends here at TNRS. This is the link to the background image that showed up on my computer the day before yesterday. It was a still image but I was able to find it in video form.
    http;//www.istartedsomething.com/bingimages/#20151222-uk

    Liked by 5 people

  23. jnursester says:

    At the risk of sounding squirrelly I have to mention that once while camping alone in the Great Smoky Mountains National park I, too, had squirrels raining little stuff on my tent all night. I had not had much experience with this and found it very funny. For some strange reason it made me feel safer, as a woman camping by myself, that the little guardian angel squirrels were there! I figured if they had not run and hid themselves, there could not be too many larger predators about!

    Liked by 5 people

  24. Doug says:

    Good summary Beckita and I love how you bring the mystical into this post. Thank you Charlie and all the TNRS folks here on this blog. The folks here are absolutely wonderful! I find great joy and consolation here as we are all united squirrels serving our Lord and savior Jesus Christ and honoring our Mother, the Blessed Virgin Mary. Now, I typically don’t ask these types of questions, but does your Angel ever laugh at all the squrrelly jokes and comments here? I wish everyone a very Merry and Blessed Christmas!

    Liked by 3 people

  25. Katherine Bailey says:

    Looks to me as if we are all getting a little bit “Squirrely” here….love it..! Merry Christmas every one.

    Liked by 6 people

  26. the phoenix says:

    Didn’t have time to participate in squirrel talk before … was busy with work and am far more of a bird person … someone who watches for all the different species of birds at the feeder. My dad had a system for that … he pretty much covered the entire backyard with bird seed and bread … grass, picnic table tops, and a special wooden feeder he made that was like a house with three sides and a roof for shelter and protection, but completely open on one side so you could get a nice, wide open beautiful view of the birds while they were inside, eating in comfort while the snow fell and the winds blew.

    Now back to the squirrels. Speaking as a part Native American, my Iroquois ancestors would have cooked up those tasty critters with corn, beans, and squash. Would have made a nice Christmas feast.

    Liked by 4 people

    • Beckita says:

      Phoenix, wish you were here. We had a rare bird event this week as the local birders discovered an unusual find in the area: “The fieldfare looks like a robin with black speckles on its breast instead of solid red-orange coloring. It likes the same kind of habitat – fruit trees and berry bushes – only in Norway and Sweden and Russia.” Seems its visit had to do with a weather system from Siberia to Alaska.

      Liked by 1 person

    • Mick says:

      Phoenix, it would definitely be hard to go wrong with corns, beans, squash… and squirrel. Yum!

      Liked by 1 person

      • the phoenix says:

        Hi Mick,

        Wish you lived close enough to share Christmas dinner. I’m going to have corn, beans, and sweet potato with bison. No squash or squirrel this year, but a Native American flavor anyways. Merry Christmas!

        Like

        • Mick says:

          Phoenix, thank you. I would have loved to have shared Christmas dinner with you (especially with such a menu!). I do hope that you and I get to meet someday on this side of the veil; you’re definitely my kind of people. 🙂

          Liked by 1 person

  27. Arby says:

    Hi Charlie, Merry Christmas!! Peace on Earth and Joy to the World!! Our Lady of Tepayak pray for us. Love you man.

    Liked by 3 people

  28. Patrick of South Dakota says:

    I sent some of my own squirrel pics to the TNS email. If someone can grab them and post them for me that would be great, then I can comment on them.

    _______________________
    As requested, Patrick:

    Patrick said: I sold my computer to buy bulk beans and rice for the storm, and I’m having a hard time using my iPad to do stuff on the TNRS blog, so could you post these pics for me?

    Then I’ll comment on it.

    That is my neighbor’s cat, Violet, and that squirrel is taunting her. This pic was taken moments before Violet sprung up after the squirrel, both racing up the tree…but of course had absolutely no chance of catching it. This went on between them for 20 minutes.

    The Squirrel Teases Pat’s Cat:
    https://goo.gl/photos/tuWTygm5mvmXMDdN7
    _________________________

    Liked by 2 people

  29. barb129 says:

    I am way behind on comments. I just opened my email that I receive all the comments on and there were 512! I’m still working on Monday…hehe…
    But before things get totally crazy here, I want to wish everyone a blessed and peaceful Christmas…may we all take time to enjoy the glory and joy of this day!!

    Liked by 5 people

    • charliej373 says:

      I know Barb…I go for lunch and when I come back there are often 100. And folks say I’m sometime grumpy…let me take a day off and boy, do the natives get restless around here!

      Liked by 2 people

      • barb129 says:

        I understand! Whenever there has been a gap in comments showing up, I always tell Mark….”Charlie is either taking a much-needed break or writing a new post!”
        Thank you, Charlie, and I hope you take a break for Christmas with no complaints. =)
        Prayers for and love to you and all those here for a blessed Christmas!!!

        Liked by 4 people

  30. Phillip Frank says:

    I will be playing drums at the midnight mass in my parish tonight.
    This is the only time I get to play these songs so I look forward to this sublime and holy night and realize truley why I have this talent, to serve Our Lord on this holiest of nights during a holy mass.
    Doesn’t get any better than this…..

    Liked by 4 people

    • charliej373 says:

      You know, Phillip, of all the venues I played when I was really working the horn (pit orchestras, jazz festivals, benefits) nothing comes close to the Holy Feast Day Masses.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Patrick of South Dakota says:

        After the storm and recovery, perhaps which should try to put together The NRS Ensemble!

        Liked by 1 person

        • charliej373 says:

          Well, maybe…probably need some divine intervention. I would have to practice regularly for a month just to get to be bad enough to perform in public without being utterly humiliated. I wish I had learned to play the piano well along with the trumpet. I used to be really good when I was young…won several state awards and made a nice chunk of change doing private stuff. When I was playing at the Cathedral in Belleville 15 years ago, I was marginally competent. Now I’m just a blowhard (which a few readers helpfully remind me of from time to time). I don’t know if I will ever play in public again until I have (God willing) received my glorified body.

          Liked by 3 people

        • Doug says:

          Oh yes. That would be nice!

          Liked by 1 person

    • Beckita says:

      Amen, Phillip. Love percussion. Would enjoy hearing you play. God bless you!

      Like

    • Patrick of South Dakota says:

      Hi Phillip,

      Last week, I got roped into returning to the piano for a tiny local church. (Built in the late 1800’s it makes the chapel on Little House on the Prairie look like a cathedral.). My friend said that by not playing for church I was burying my talent. I told her I was just “hiding” it, and that there’s a difference (although I’m not sure how, but it sounded good). I grudgingly agreed to humor her and look in to it.

      Anyway, after a 16 year hiatus, I found myself sitting at the keys once more before a packed house of 40 people for a candlelight Christmas Eve Mass. I was so nervous I could hardly play (or pray).😰

      Amazingly, no one heard the scores of mistakes I made (pun intended) and all seemed grateful to have any music at all. (Embarrassingly, I got an applause). You and I and other musicians have an important ministry as we help enhance the worship experience of our fellow parishioners. And, AH, the music of this season is so wonderful and sublime, having been a part of our lives since childhood.

      I hope the Lord appreciates the suffering and sacrifice I endured that night, because today I’m nursing a swollen right pinkie.

      Liked by 1 person

  31. Bob says:

    Several years back when I went squirrel hunting a fiend commented “So you’re going after tree rats again?” and that is the last time I ever did. There is not enough meat on them to be worth the trouble unless the storm requires it so they are safe for now from me. They are sometimes a pleasant distraction when I am waiting for deer though. Merry Christmas all and God Bless and may He be with us for the New Year to keep us safe, that is to remain close to our God who loves us!

    Liked by 5 people

  32. Brian Keane says:

    hi all
    this is an action thriller!!! squirrel and the eagle
    Squirrel and eagle……

    https://docs.google.com/file/d/0B8iWoIXFjer5WVo5SWtZLXItUmc/edit?usp=drive_web
    Joyeux NOEL from Quebec

    Liked by 3 people

  33. YongDuk says:

    I am so confused. How did they train the squirrel and the eagle, so the eagle wouldn’t eat the squirrel with all the takes that must have required to shoot?

    Liked by 1 person

  34. Mick says:

    Have a very Merry and blessed Christmas, everyone! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  35. Mick says:

    Here is a sidesplitting year-in-review by my favorite satirist. Prepare to laugh until you cry… and thank God that the Rescue is only two years away:

    http://www.miamiherald.com/living/liv-columns-blogs/dave-barry/article51119880.html

    Liked by 1 person

  36. Mick says:

    Regarding the satirical piece to which I recently linked, I should have mentioned that the TNRS mascot makes cameo appearance in the March and April reviews. Who knew that our mascot was so famous and influential?

    Liked by 3 people

  37. Bob says:

    Of course in St Louis in 2011, when the Cardinals last won the world series we had our famous rally squirrel which ran across the field at an opportune time.

    Liked by 1 person

  38. Kristen says:

    Merry Christmas, Charlie! Great article on squirrels! Yesterday we were taking our ornaments out to decorate our tree and our daughter noticed her ornament “Baby’s First Year.” Adorable- a little squirrel nestled in a nut-shaped bassinet with two acorns dangling from below- like little bells. She loved it- she loves squirrels too! She is one you have prayed for before- thank you!

    Liked by 2 people

  39. A Quiet Person says:

    Merry Christmas Doug, YongDuk, Michael Patric and all of the other squirrel enthusiasts. You might not be so enthusiastic after you read this but I am offering it anyway. It is from a cookbook I inherited from my mom, “The American Woman’s Cook Book.” The original copyright is 1938.

    “Dressing and Trussing”

    “To skin and dress a rabbit, hare, or squirrel, cut off the feet at the fore feet at the first joint, cut the skin around the first joint of the hind leg, loosen it and then with a sharp knife slit the skin on the underside of the leg at the tail. Loosen the skin and turn it back until it is removed from the hind legs. Tie the hind legs together and hang the rabbit to a hook by this fastening. Draw the skin over the head, slipping our the fore legs when they are reached. Cut off the head and thus remove the entire skin. Wipe with a damp cloth. Slit down the front and remove the entrails, saving heart and liver, and wipe carefully inside. Wash inside and out with acidulated water, using 1 tablespoon vinegar to each cup of water. Rinse and wipe thoroughly.

    If blood has settled in any part, cut with the point of a knife where it is black and soak in warm water. Skewer firmly between the shoulders, draw the legs close to the body and fasten with skewers.”

    Is anyone still reading this because, wait, there is more!

    Here is a recipe. Now, I don’t recall Worcestershire sauce being on anyone’s list of bug-out supplies, but after this, consider yourselves warned.

    “Roast Squirrels”

    3 small squirrels
    3/4 cup salad oil
    1/4 cup lemon juice or vinegar
    2 cups bread crumbs
    1/2 cup cream or milk12 cup diced and sauteed mushrooms
    1/2 teaspoon salt
    1/8 teaspoon pepper
    1/2 teaspoon onion juice
    4 tablespoons olive oil or bacon fat
    1 teaspoon Worcestershire sauce
    Paprika

    Dress and clean squirrels. Wash in several waters and dry. Cover with salad oil mixed with lemon juice and let stand for 1 hour. Combine bread crumbs, with just enough milk or cream to moisten, mushrooms, salt, pepper, and onion juice. Stuff the squirrel with this mixture, skewer and truss. Brush with olive oil or bacon fat and roast uncovered in a slow oven (325 F) 1 and 1/2 to 1 and 3/4 hours or until tender. Baste every 15 minutes with fat from the bottom of pan. When tender, make a gravy with with remaining broth, adding Worcestershire sauce and paprika to taste. Serve gravy in a separate dish. Serves 6.”

    I also have a recipe for potted pigeons, pigeon and mushroom stew, hare or rabbit salami, roast opossum, and Brunswick stew (using 2 squirrels).

    Well, looks like my prayer to lose weight will be answered before too long.

    Now, here is something from a book “The Wild Food Cookbook From the Fields and Forests of the Great Lakes States” by Dr. Frances Hamerstrom “the Bird Lady.” This is going to tell you way more than anyone needs to know about squirrels. Really. Some things you should just leave alone. But I think we may be too far into this squirrel thing to do that. Anyway she writes, ” Young squirrels, less than a year old are tender. I know no easy way of distinguishing between young and old males, but the nipples of older females are apparent whereas those of the younger ones (which have not born young) are very difficult to find. Select young animals for simple frying.”

    She has a few recipes for squirrels that are simpler than the one I just wrote out, one for fried squirrels, one for stewed squirrels, and one for older squirrels. I’ll be happy (well, sort of happy) to send them along. Right now though, I think I have enjoyed about as much of this as I can stand for the moment.

    Merry Christmas Everyone!

    Liked by 5 people

    • Oh, that doesn’t bother me in the least, Quiet. I’ve still got the .22 I inherited from my Grandma and I know she used it quite liberally for squirrel, rabbit and the like during the Depression. I’ve also hunted and eaten a lot of game, from here to the Midwest to Alaska, but have preferred the camera for the past couple of decades.

      I hope it doesn’t come to this, but should a serious need ever arise I wouldn’t think twice about heading out back into the desert and treating it like a grocery store. I’d start with fishing, though. From there, probably quail. There’s deer then, javelina and other larger game. You’ll understand, though, if I saved the squirrels for only the most desperate of situations.

      At present, there’s just my small ‘fishing’ expeditions, and then only for souls. Just pray for me and everyone else that we’re up to the challenge when it’s time to cast a wide net for the big haul.

      God Bless,

      MP

      Liked by 5 people

    • Beckita says:

      Thanks for the recipe, Quiet. Think I’ll order up some more protein powder to share.

      Liked by 4 people

    • Doug says:

      Wow! Quiet, I think you are more prepared for the storm than any of us with that recipe. I’ll save this one. Don’t tell Charlie though.

      Liked by 5 people

      • A Quiet Person says:

        Well, I know that on previous posts there was discussion about what to do if, during the height of the Storm, people show up on your doorstep that you would rather not have. I can’t help but think that if you put this on the menu (after first asking them to help prepare it) and your problem may be solved! One part from the 1938 book I did not include is, “Neither hares nor rabbits should be drawn before hanging, as they may become musty.” (I assume she means squirrels as well because the title of the paragraph is “Rabbits, Hares and Squirrels.” Anyway, she continues, “In Winter, select a dry place for hanging, and they may remain for some time.”

        So, here is one plan for unwanted guests . . . just hang a musty old critter or two around your place. Maybe one near your front door and one outside the door to the storage pantry where we will all now be hording our protein powder. And meanwhile, hope that squirrels do not sneak into your storage pantry.

        Liked by 7 people

    • Patrick of South Dakota says:

      Ted Nugent’s got a cookbook called “Kill it and grill it”

      Liked by 4 people

      • Doug says:

        I love it!

        Liked by 2 people

      • CrewDog says:

        I remember my Survival School Instructor telling us that meat never gets so spoiled that you can’t eat it ….. after cookin’!!! …… and he also told us that Ya know your’e gettin’ hungry when Ya ask yourself … “How many of them bugs do I got to eat?”
        This thread reminds us of how important it is to keep our humor … whatever might come!

        GOD SAVE ALL HERE …. & Happy Feast of Stephen!!

        Liked by 3 people

    • Petra says:

      Oh darn, and all I have around here are large squirrels…. 🙂 Well, I guess I’ll have to wait until springtime. (By that time maybe all this squirel-mania will have passed.)

      God bless and Merry Christmas.

      Liked by 4 people

  40. Maryann Fox says:

    My 23 year old daughter is attending school in Georgia. I was wondering where the community in the Georgia Appalachians is that I have seen posts on the NRS site from and if she could visit there.

    Liked by 1 person

  41. Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

    I feel so bad I missed out on this fun post! Dagnabit! But I loved it! Soooo, I decided to change my name as I was feeling just terrible about being a “Nocturnal Squirrel Hunter” (and all the other Latin names I was called 😛 ) known as the one who eats all the cute fuzzy little squirrels. Yong Duk, I listened and learned…and I went so far the other way, I think I can safely say I am now squirrel food!
    Sincerely, the reformed Snowy Owl 😉

    Liked by 8 people

    • Doug says:

      Snowy, I was really getting used to Snowy Owl and really like the screen name 🙂

      Liked by 3 people

      • charliej373 says:

        …And the owl will lie down with the squirrel…or something like that.

        Liked by 8 people

      • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

        Oh Doug, now come on, I left the Snowy part! This one is much more fun and besides I get to use all the pretty snow covered cherry blossom pictures and switch them up, the ones from Japan are too die for! The owl pictures were just too boring. I’m an artist and I love and paint everything with snow because I have no choice living in Minnefrozen. 😀 You know that saying- bloom where you are planted!

        Liked by 6 people

        • Mick says:

          Snowy, “Minnefrozen”… hahaha!

          So, we’re starting our 33-day consecration tomorrow (I mean, today), right? I just talked to my eldest son and asked if he’d like to do it along with us. He said, “Sure, why not?” So, that makes three of us. 🙂

          Fr. Gaitley’s book?

          Liked by 4 people

          • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

            Mick, you remembered! I left you a message in the forum earlier, just in case. And yes, Fr. Gaitley’s book which finally came yesterday… I haven’t had a chance to look at it yet but will after I get a few hours of sleep. It’s great your son is joining us- wow!

            Liked by 3 people

          • jlynnbyrd says:

            Snowy, I just finished this consecration and what a blessing it is! Keep fighting the good fight and stay steadfast to the path of light. You are a blossom of cheer.

            Liked by 3 people

          • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

            Thank you, Jlynn! 🙂 I really love it!

            Liked by 1 person

          • YongDuk says:

            I think I will do the powder blue book… Good idea. . . This way my Gaudete Angel will be all the more joyful that I am re-celebrating the month. But I shall watch the DVD of his.

            Liked by 3 people

          • charliej373 says:

            A lovely lady from Texas sent me a “Marian” blue quilt. Then I saw some gorgeous Marian blue phalaenopsis orchids and got them for a couple friends. Before I left on my pilgrimage, I was given a few tips on colors. Blue is a Marian color, but when it is blue it means Our Lord is near at hand with her. When she comes alone, she appears in white – or so I am told. When you see a flash of gold, an angel is near at hand.

            Liked by 6 people

          • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

            Mick, I read the entire beginning of Fr. Gaitley’s book (mine is like a tall thin magazine type booklet) and read & prayed Day 1. I can’t tell you how much I LOVE it! Especially when he talks about the Celts! Haha! I’m half Scot/Brit- even part Viking, so I love all of that history 🙂 I am so happy I am doing this I could just cry! Okay, I’ll stop being a drama queen 😀 but I do just love it. Thank you so much for encouraging me to do this, you’re just the best!

            Liked by 4 people

          • YongDuk says:

            That makes sense, Charlie!

            When pregnant, a lighter blue on white. At the Cross, dark… But that doesn’t always hold true for the shades…I think. When an infant, dark navy holding the Eucharist in bright white swaddling clothes. And one Good Friday, only a light blue mantle again over white, but that was gathering the children under her mantle.

            Liked by 3 people

          • Mick says:

            Ha ha, Snowy! The part about the Celts is hilarious. My two older boys (the 13-year-old decided to join my eldest and me at the last minute and to renew his consecration, too) were laughing their heads off, imagining fearsome, fearless, crazy Celtic warriors charging into battle, wearing nothing but blue body paint.

            Beckita and YD, so glad that you’re joining Snowy, my boys, and me. 🙂

            Liked by 4 people

          • barb129 says:

            And every time you do it, Snowy Cherry Blossoms, you’ll love it and our dear Blessed Mother more!

            Liked by 2 people

        • Doug says:

          I initially thought you were a new blogger, but you were posting and commenting like you have been here a while. So I thought, who is this here? Now you have cleared it up. I blog using my smart phone most of the time. So I did not look at your gravitar image. I still like Snowy Owl better. But maybe that is because I live in the woods of NH living a manly life and Snow Owls hunting squirrels seems manly.

          My wife loves to paint. You two would get along well. Her idea of prepping is buying paint supplies for the storm to keep busy. We are going to a paint bar next week for our 31st Annaversary. She will paint and I will sip wine and watch. Happy New Year!

          Liked by 4 people

        • Beckita says:

          I think you would L.O.V.E. Fr. Michael Gaitley’s book, “33 Days to Morning Glory!” I originally consecrated (and renewed it frequently) with St. Louis de Montfort’s formula. Then, when Fr. Michael’s book hit the stands, I gave it a try and have continued renewing several times each year using his style and it is rich in meditation material.

          1st week focuses on the writings of St. Louis de M, 2nd week: St. Maximillian Kolbe, 3rd week: soon-to-be St. Mother Teresa, 4th week: St. John Paul II. It is glorious material! Someone just sent me the Retreat Companion that’s been developed to accompany Fr. Gaitley’s book. So, Ladies, Bishopman, and discerning seminarian, I shall join you in this blessed venture of renewal. I’m going to do so enfolding family members who are in need of conversion, praying in proxy for each one.

          Loved what you shared about Marian colors, Charlie.

          Liked by 5 people

    • Beckita says:

      Hey Snowy! I thought your comments today seemed like a familiar voice. Thanks for clarifying about your new name which is lovely.

      Liked by 3 people

  42. prayingflower says:

    Okay, some of that 2:05 PM comment above got lost I guess. We are having a flea epidemic here and everybody is blaming the squirrels! Well, I say it’s the fleas’ fault. Wish I knew how to stir fry a flea. My cats are indoor cats and even they have contracted the little critters. I know all God’s critters got a place…just wish they knew theirs. I ran across Charlie’s very funny flea story in the archives on Monday and so I am praying them away.

    Liked by 5 people

    • Snowy Cherry Blossoms says:

      Prayingflower, Usually, but not always, where you find fleas you’ll also find tapeworms. The fleas are the host for those ugly, flat, disgusting worms (eeeww) you might want to treat the cats for those too :/
      Sorry to be the bearer of such slimy news 😦 Happy New Year LOL) 😉

      Liked by 1 person

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