Welcome to "The Last Leaf Gardener," a blog by Patricia Youngquist. I am a photo-artist, bird-lover and urban gardener living in NYC. My website includes my non-nature themed images (Black and White as well as Kaleidoscopic). Click on the fourth image in sidebar (Left) to visit. I also have published a three volume book series, "Words In Our Beak," in which the stories are told by Cam, the bird pictured above. Click on the first image in the sidebar (Right) for info.
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Saturday, December 24, 2016
Tonight is The First Night of Chanukah Moreover, it's also Christmas Eve!
Tonight is The First Night of Chanukah. There will be a menorah lighting ceremony on 59th Street and Fifth Avenue in New York City, at the southern most point of Central Park. According to a NYC-related web-page, the menorah to be lit is 32 feet tall and weighs 4.000 pounds! The menorahs pictured in the image atop this entry are just a little smaller than that (-;
Be that as it may, in spite of having Jewish ancestors, I know very little about Chanukah or the lighting of the menorah, but I have read that "Chanukah means 'dedication,' and commemorates the rededication of the Temple in Jerusalem after its desecration by foreign forces and the Jews' victory over the Hellenist Syrians in the year 165 B. C. For the rededication celebration, the Maccabees desired to light the menorah and looked everywhere for oil, finally finding a small flask that contained only enough oil to light the menorah for one day. Miraculously, the oil lasted for eight days. The message of Chanukah may be found in the name of the holiday itself: dedication —not only of the temple building but of individual lives to the pursuit of high religious and human ideals." This quote is something I discussed in bygone years in an entry here on Blogger where I wrote about a parallel between Advent and Chanukah.
In any event, the menorahs featured in the image atop this entry were created by Sébastien and if they look familiar to you, dear reader, it may be because I've featured them in bygone years in a posting I wrote for hometalk.
And speaking of Christmas trees, tonight is not only The First Night of Chanukah, it also happens to be Christmas Eve! A number of reindeer have come to make music in honor of the coming of the babe in the manger, as evidenced in the picture below.
The musically-inclined reindeer can be seen atop the second shelf, which is now serving as their orchestra pit while they huddle below my crèche, as well as below the figurines who have come to visit it.
And there is still time to give Cam's book and or the postcards based on it as a gift for the holiday you celebrate. Chanukah is a celebration and the Christmas season lasts at least 12 days and technically until we celebrate the Baptism of the Lord. Moreover, for those of you might want to give either the book or postcards as a Kwanzaa gift, your holiday is upon us (12-26-2016 until 1-1-2017)!
ADENMENDUM: The digital versions of Volume One within the Words In Our Beak book series that are mentioned in this entry may only remain available for a limited time, but a hardcover version of Volume One can be found wherever books are sold. Moreover, Volume Two of the book series is now available! Both volumes one and two are in hardcover format (as seen below) and can be purchased any place where books are sold.
Here's the purchase info for thehardcover versionsof the Words In Our Beak book series: