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December 21, 2016 / philosophermouseofthehedge

Ice and pyramids

Ice coated the windows. Inside.

When electric blankets were invented, we Littles knew there was a God.

Of course sleeping under piles – mounds – absolute pyramids – of old heavy cotton batted quilts would have been good practice to withstand interrogations if ever involved in witch trials. Pallets of rocks couldn’t have been heavier.

Ice skating frogs on Victorian Christmas card. Nova Scotia archives/flickr/pd/

Those Victorians. Nothing toady about them.(PD/

Christmas meant gathering at Brushy Creek.

There was a stove in the kitchen, a fireplace in the front room with the light bulb, and a card table with bored games.

When older, we’d shiver outside on the porch trying to tune in rock and roll from the big Chicago radio station.

But mostly there was radio – and normal life – silenced.

With stars.

In a deep velvet sky.

Victorian Children on Christmas postcard (archives of Oscar Andersen.1912-1915.Nat.Archives of Norway/flickr/PD/

Not us. I’m sure mother had dreams of Christmas like this. But no. Hickville. (PD/

Walking in the dark doesn’t bother me still.

I’ll use the dog for an excuse and do some of that these holidays, even though light pollution dims the heavens.

If only the wind would blow the scent of hay this way. It would be almost there again.

And then it would be Christmas.

Christmas is hard without a barn. Cattle lowing and all.

However, running water, central heat and microwaves, does make up for a lot of it.

Merry Christmas to all and to all a peaceful starlight.

Phil, the Philosopher Mouse of the Hedge.

Jingling on out of here until next week except for catching up on some blog reading

A few holiday offerings to amuse until then: 

  • There’s a Great Pyramid in Texas – one  constructed by a German guy named Emil, 1870. A German Christmas tradition created for his small town that is now considered “one of the finest pieces of folk art ever made in the Lone Star State.” Settlers brought a little bit of their homeland with them to Texas for comfort. Now we stand with the German people at this difficult time offering what comfort we can.


Pigs pulling kids on sled. Christmas postcard by Laerum,1890.(Nat.lib.of Norway/flickr/PD/

We never had pigs or we probably would have attempted this – with wheels instead of snow. I heard stories that Mom nixed pigs after one episode of dressing out a hog on the back porch one January weekend. Once was enough for that city girl. (PD/


  1. easyweimaraner / Dec 21 2016 7:11 am

    I loved this old christmasses just with the radio… and I loved our rituals… to feed all farm animals first (different things for the chicken that they will lay lots of eggs next year) before we attacked the christmas tree…. Have a good christmas :o)


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 21 2016 10:03 am

      Special treats for chickens. I like that idea as their kind generousity is taken for granted so often. We never had chickens either. Mom had scars on the backs of her legs from rooster attacks as a child. (Even city folks had chicken coops back then)
      May Christmas cheer fill your home and hearts. Thanks for the jingle


  2. shoreacres / Dec 21 2016 7:12 am

    Did you ever sneak out to the barn at midnight on Christmas Eve, to see if the legend about the animals kneeling was true? If I had a barn now, with animals, I’d do it. I’d not expect it, but I wouldn’t bet against it, either.

    Merry Christmas to you and all of yours!

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 21 2016 7:22 am

      There’s something right about standing in a warm barn full of hay and animals on Christmas Eve. They do seem amazingly peaceful and looking at something we can’t see. (Always liked that little carol of the animals discussing what they gave on that night…even the sheep with the curly horn. Always liked that sheep.
      Always thought it was an English carol, but it apparently has French heritage (so what English doesn’t? HA HA)
      Thanks for gazing along. Merry Christmas!


  3. eloisedesousa / Dec 21 2016 7:28 am

    Wishing you a merry Christmas!


  4. ksbeth / Dec 21 2016 7:50 am

    and you!


  5. Ally Bean / Dec 21 2016 8:47 am

    Emil certainly was a character! Love his creation which is… odd… but fascinating. Would love to ride on a “four pig open sled!” Fun post.


  6. Kate Crimmins / Dec 21 2016 9:30 am

    Our old house tended to be cold upstairs even with “central” heating (and I use that term loosely). We always stood in front of the kitchen oven with the door open to warm up after climbing out of toasty beds. We also had some frozen condensation on the inside of some of the “less secure” windows. I wonder how we survived all these inconveniences….


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 21 2016 9:57 am

      People seemed to be sick less back then. Something to be said for hardy souls with unheated house immunity? Thanks for the jingle comment. Merry on!


  7. the dune mouse / Dec 21 2016 9:52 am

    a very happy Christmas to you! wonderful post- love the frogs!


  8. sportsattitudes / Dec 21 2016 11:14 am

    May all the lovely residents of the Hedge have a Very, Very Merry Christmas!


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 29 2016 5:56 pm

      Even now those of the realm are participating in the endless marathon around the Christmas tree. It’s on a short table off the ground for a reason…sadly RC cat keeps forgetting that her undertable passage is sometimes blocked by packages forcing creative alternatives. Exercising brain and muscle. (Please can we take the tree down now?)
      Merry merry and cheers for a happy new year!

      Liked by 1 person

  9. marthaschaefer / Dec 21 2016 5:26 pm

    Pure Phil, here. One of your best! Merry, Magical Christmas my friend to all members of the Realm. Alice sends her love.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 29 2016 5:53 pm

      There’s magic in the air during Christmas. Thanks for believing along
      (Paw waves and stay warm!)


  10. Aquileana / Dec 22 2016 2:36 pm

    Christmas is hard without a barn… and without all those things that Seem to reconnect us to “all what matters”. I liked these piece very much dear Philosophermouseofthehedge… There is a longing feeling that trascends everything here! ….
    Merry Christmas with bright stars in a deep velvet sky! ⭐ Sending love! 😀


  11. memoirsofahusk / Dec 24 2016 6:45 am

    Ah, I love to sleep under what we call an eiderdown (or used to) – nothing like a heavy warm quilt of feathers for sending one to sleep! Happy Christmas and thanks for sharing your quirky view of the world all year round. I don’t always find time to comment sensibly (or sillily!) but do pop by often. Here’s to a better 2017 all round, eh?


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 29 2016 5:51 pm

      Eiderdown warmed up images of elegance and luxury. Our quilts may have had chicken feathers sticking out or more often cotton which became heavy and damp over the years. But either from fresh air, farm activity, or being weighed down, we all slept quickly and fine. Thanks for the kind words and wandering along here


  12. inesephoto / Dec 24 2016 3:12 pm

    Merry Christmas to you! Peace and joy! 🙂


  13. The Hook / Dec 24 2016 4:18 pm

    Your work brings me peace and lights my heart, old friend.
    Thank you.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 29 2016 5:47 pm

      Your bright comments are probably the result of reflections of the Falls’ magical winter lights. Beauty is out there – and it’s nice to share. Cheers and thanks


  14. Sarah Ferguson and Choppy / Dec 26 2016 8:46 am

    I love that pig picture. I’m pretty sure every animal we ever owned was at some point hitched to a sled or other moving implement in the hopes that it would pull us along. It never seemed to work as well as hoped.


    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Dec 29 2016 5:45 pm

      The Victorians seem to adore pigs for holiday cards. Some very amusing ones out there. We tried hitching red wagons to dogs, but only got dumped over: sand too deep and dog less than inerested…FYI that treat/carrot suspended from a stick ideas is so overrated…
      Thanks for sliding by to chat

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Rilla Z / Dec 28 2016 7:39 am

    How whimsical! Reading my first post by you, and it would be read too late to wish you a Merry Christmas properly. Perhaps you can pretend I did, and have a marvelous New Year. And, I’ve got to say, “bored” games is quite accurate at times.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 18 2017 7:15 pm

      You can laugh as I’m even more late responding to comment. Glad you got game and wander over. Thanks for stopping by to chat


  16. Amy / Jan 18 2017 6:30 pm

    I love your poetic prose that evoke fond images, whether real or imagined. I, too, have slept under the heavy batted cotton quilts, barely able to move from the weight. My aunt had a brown down comforter, so I loved sleeping with her when I visited.

    Liked by 1 person

    • philosophermouseofthehedge / Jan 18 2017 6:57 pm

      Childhood textures wrap closely around you despite the years. Soft light down was such a luxury and kids are happy with the smallest things. Thanks for running over to romp in the comment basket

      Liked by 1 person

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