Sunday, January 24, 2021

Mosaic Monday #115: Jolly, Jubilant and Joyous

January 2021 is treating me well.  From winter recreation to Whitefish Winter Carnival merriment to the invigorating inauguration of President Biden, I have a myriad of reasons for celebration.  

La Nina may not have delivered the mounds of snow that we expected, but we have enough to support our winter sports, including downhill and cross-country skiing.  And it's only January 24; lots of "winter" remains!!!

Last week brought a wild wind storm that tumbled trees and power lines, knocking out power across the valley.  We were fortunate to be without electricity for only a few hours; some waited a couple of days!  We have newly resolved to purchase a generator.

Whitefish has been the home of the Whitefish Winter Carnival for over 60 years, and I have been fortunate to be involved since the fall of 2019.  My main responsibility has been the design and sale of the Carnival buttons, a role I share with another Board member.  This year, none of our traditional events will be held as a safety precaution.  (If you need a refresher, I wrote extensively about the final weekend of 2020 Carnival in my February 16, 2020 post.  My March 2, 2018 post explains many of the other traditions.)  This presented an opportunity for the Board to find creative ways to keep the spirit of Carnival alive.  The theme SURVIVOR was chosen, and this opened the door to brainstorm "challenges" that could be entertaining and safe. (If you have ever watched the show, you know contestants have to participate in various challenges.)

The community has enthusiastically responded - businesses have helped create and conduct challenges, and people have jumped at the chance for distraction and prizes!  To mention just a few: The Great Toilet Paper Challenge required participants to guess the number of toilet paper rolls in the shop window at Imagination Station.  The Virtual Penguin Plunge raises money for Special Olympics; by February 6, teams will film themselves "freezin' for a reason" - I surmise this could take many forms!  The Stumptown Art Studio is hosting Technicolor Yeti, a ornament painting contest.  Double the Bubble, Double the Fun is sponsored by Sage & Cedar; competitors will estimate the number of soap slices sold in 2020.  First place wins this stuffed yeti and a slice of soap!

Given my role selling buttons to the businesses, it quickly evolved that I became heavily engaged in coordinating quite a few of the challenges.  Imagine my delight when, for my contribution "to the realm", I was knighted last week.  The Executive Director of the Museum where I volunteer lured me there early, with the ruse of a special project.  Little did I know that the royalty was gathering nearby.  I am not on the Board for the recognition, but it is wonderful to be appreciated!  (During a knighting, the Prime Minister reads the scroll, King Ullr performs the knighting, and the Queen of the Snows places the ribbon on the new "liege of the realm".  The knight is also presented with pins from the King and Prime.)  I was so surprised, I was crying - masks are good for more than just viruses!

January has been a historic month in the US for several reasons; for diehard Cleveland Browns fans, the 2020-2021 season marked the first time in 18 years that their beloved team made it to the playoffs!  With great anticipation, we gathered around the big screen on January 10 for the match-up with the Steelers.  There is no love lost between these long-time rivals, and almost no one was predicting that the Browns could win.  But win they did, 48-37.  Such vindication, especially considering the head coach, Kevin Stefanski, was sequestered in the basement of his house due to COVID exposure.  The following week, we battled with the Kansas City Chiefs, and eventually succumbed 22-17.  I think I speak for all the fans when I write that we are very pleased with the season, and are ready for even greater things next season!

Mid-month, I was tickled to get a text from a neighbor, offering us fresh eggs.  Together with her husband, she is on 28-day cleanse and couldn't use the abundance produced by her hens.  It was fabulous to find this basket on our front porch the next morning; eggs in many colors and sizes, some of them practically luminous.  And you know the taste is so much richer and deeper than store eggs!

A friend of ours from Cleveland came for a week-long visit; he just departed yesterday.  I have christened Tim the "Best Guest from the Midwest" - he is generous to a fault, and helps around the house during his stay.  Apart from our kids, he has been our most frequent visitor and the next time he comes, I will probably have a sign on the guest room door that reads "Tim's Room".   

The day we visited Kootenai Falls, a train passed by and our waving prompted the engineer to blow the horn.  I love trains!

The month has also seen other blissful moments. The storm I mentioned at the beginning of this post shredded my moose flag beyond further repair, so I purchased a new one.  A Christmas gift I ordered for Spousal Unit (chocolate liqueurs) finally arrived.  Deer by the creek, captured on my trail cam.  A sunrise over Whitefish Mountain Resort on the way to work.  The sparkle of a million snowflakes, glistening in the meadow as I ski with Dear Neighbor Friend.  We all have our problems, and the world certainly does, but at these times, I am filled with cheer and optimism.

I will leave you with one final video.  Winter Carnival conducted a Songwriter's Challenge, with several terrific entries.  The winner, "Wake Me" by Big Sky City Lights, is a showcase for the talent that thrives in the Flathead Valley.  It is a song about hope, about the journey.  It is simple, with a hauntingly beautiful melody.  Set in a Montana barn with light snow falling, it gently encourages us - it is "time to start living".

Mosaic Monday

Welcome to Mosaic Monday, a weekly meme where we get together to share our photo mosaics and collages.
Please include at least one photo mosaic/collage in your post.
The link will be open from 1 p.m. Sunday until 11 p.m. Tuesday (U.S. Mountain time). 
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As host I will visit every participant and leave a comment so that you know I stopped by. 
Please try and visit as many other blogs as you can, especially those that join in later, so that everyone's creativity can be appreciated fully. 
Thank you for joining in today and sharing your mosaics with us.  

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  1. Seems wonderful days... except being without electricity. Funny reading about Whitefisch Winter Carnival. The Song winning the contest is fantastic indeed.

    ...and of course we saw the Inauguration. It was a great atmosphere. Especially I loved the poem of Amanda Gorman, her call for 'unity and togetherness'.

    Happy MosaicMonday
    Cheers, Heidrun

  2. I remember our trip to Glacier and staying Whitefish. It's a nice town. Such a special place to live. Have a grand week!

  3. have some lovely snow images to share. Wake Me by Big Sky City Lights is wonderful. They are new to me, I will check them out. Thanks fo Angie for hosting.

  4. Such a wonderful post and that carnival looks wonderful. Your knighting was also super cool and that song, WOW, that's a keeper!

  5. What a busy month. I love the TP display. Creative. Blessings in heaps! Helpful guest, being knighted and fresh eggs. Love it.
    Dawn aka Spatulas On Parade

  6. Congratulations on your well-deserved knighthood! Are you called Dame Angie now? )). I am glad you all found a way for the Carnival to survive. ... Fresh country eggs really are wonderful ... we enjoy our daughters whenever they have a surplus.

  7. Hello Angie,
    The Winter Carnival sounds like a fun time. I enjoyed both videos, being knighted is awesome. Love the train horn too. The fresh eggs look wonderful, the last scene and photo is gorgeous. Thanks for hosting. Have a great new week!

  8. Happy Mosaic Monday. Interesting seeing photos of people wearing masks

    much love...

  9. Sounds as though it has been a wonderful month already for you, Angie. Glad to hear some joyous, upbeat news. Everyone seems glum and downcast elsewhere... Great pics and read!

  10. PS: Thank you for hosting, Angie, Keep well and safe!

  11. Hopefully this new year will be a reason for us all to celebrate! Enjoy your week! Hugs! And thanks for the party!

  12. Looks like it has been a great start to the year for you. Enjoy, stay safe, and treasure all you do. Enjoy the rest of your week. ps - It is hot here so I am enjoying the snow pics. Thanks!

  13. Angie, I love the white snow and fence shot. Enjoyed the music video. Have a great week! Sylvia D.

  14. That is so cool, Angie, being knighted to show the festival's appreciation of your work and contributions. I like your button design. Survivor is one of the few reality shows I watch. :-)

  15. So much to see and read on your joyous post:)
    That train is so long ...
    I've always liked trains, especially the older type steam train rides that are in various sites around the UK.

    Have a great week and enjoy the remainder of January.

    All the best Jan

  16. What fun to be knighted! Fun button! Our speaker at church for our marriage conference spoke of his delight to ski at Whitefish and visit Kalispell. He was a church pastor in Edmonton for many years and now is the President of a Bible College in Iowa. Hope the last week of January is a good one for you!

  17. Your life looks much more eventful in the depth of winter, Angie. The photos of the winter wonderland is breathtaking. The freight train is incredibly long. I remembered counting the number of carriage when stopped at the crossing in my childhood. The stuffed yeti with a neck lace must have encouraged people to win. The music resonated with my heart sending out hope. The performers’ breath show how it was cold in the barn. Enjoy your season as much as possible.


  18. Well, Dame Angie, that was certainly a fun-filled and eventful post on January happenings in your neck of the woods. I'm listening to the lovely song as I type this. Necessity is the mother of invention, as they say. Reinventing the carnival I'm sure will bring great joy to everyone around knowing that it can survive and continue to bring a bit of whimsy and even respite during these difficult times. I'm happy to see that your volunteer efforts are appreciated and that you were surprised and thanked in such a creative way. Cheers to you! Take care.

  19. Congrats on being knighted! (Was that on your bucket list?) ;-)

  20. Hi Angie :) You look great in that shot!! :) So nice that you're enjoying the carnival and the winter! :) I love that toilet paper challenge, lol! And the Survivor theme! I used to be such a diehard Survivor fan, but gave up my tv many moons ago and haven't watched it of the all-star ones I think. What an amazing gift of fresh eggs!

  21. It's a winter wonderland out there. I love that basket of fresh eggs. We were eating the biggest eggs in Costa Rica. Which, they don't refrigerate in grocery stores. Nature's perfect wrapper I guess.

  22. Beautiful post Angie, congratulations on the Knighthood!! Wonderful to receive the eggs. I so enjoy your snow photos. The carnival ideas are wonderful.

  23. Nice snow, and the videos, perfect.

  24. You had an eventful month Angie. We could sure use those eggs with all of their vitamins and nutrients to stave off the threat of the China virus. Good Luck with Mr Biden. From our point of view, he seems less of an Anglophile than Trump, who of course is partly Scottish. That may account for his sometimes less than winning ways a la Wee Krankie.

  25. Beautiful winter shots and a big congrats on being knighted. Very cool, Angie. Have a wonderful weekend.

  26. I love your winter carnival and really love how they kept it going this year with non-traditional events. Such creativity of you and fellow citizens.
    And as you know, Cleveland's quarterback, Baker Mayfield, played at the University of Oklahoma so the local stations are showing a lot more of the Browns than we have years. My wife piped early this season and said something like "What is it with this Baker Mayfield guy." So every time a commentator says his name I yell at the wife "Baker Mayfield" She doesn't find it as funny as I do.
    I am loving the nfl right now and am looking forward to the Super Bowl.
    My right wing friends tell me that they still detest some of the players taking a knee during the national anthem. I say well you didn't see any of them breaching our nation's Capital either back on the 6th.

  27. Unless I am gravely mistaken knighthood can only be conferred on a male. A woman so honoured becomes a Dame. I think they changed your gender, Angie.

  28. i love a winter carnivals, i never understood why they are exclusive to summer or fall!! a nice picture of you...hoping for a better 2021!!

  29. Looks like you are enjoying your winter!! Looks like fun. Stay safe. Kit

  30. Well 'Dame' Angie, it seems January was a fabulous month for you. An American being knighted....mmmm....there's one for the history books =) Great photo of you. Love that you found new and exciting ways to help the carnival to continue.