Fraternal Order of Eagles
Big Walnut F.O.E. #3261
1623 Brice Road
Reynoldsburg, Ohio 43068
(614) 861-9073
Click Here to print a full-color version of the December 2019 Calendar.
Click Here to print a full-color version of the November 2019 Calendar.
Calendar
NOTE: Have information for this web site or event to add to the calendar? Send all info to Trustee Steve Anderson at SteveAnderson@foe3261.com
Note: Big Walnut F.O.E. facilities will open at 3 PM on December 25th!
Boy Scout Troop #279
Boy Scout Troop #279 meets at the Big Walnut F.O.E. each week. We are proud to help our local scout troop with a place to meet!

  • Troop Meetings every Monday night 7-8:30 pm
  • Crew Meetings 1st & 3rd Sunday of each month 7-8 pm

Click Here to print the Committee Meetings Schedule
Click Here to print the Patrol Leaders Council (PLC) Meetings Schedule
Click Here to print the Camp Out Schedule

Mistletoe winds its way through human history

Being kissed under the mistletoe has been a Christmas tradition for more than a thousand years. But mistletoe is not only associated with a gentle kiss, it has a lore all its own.

Mistletoe is a parasitic plant that lives off trees. It has attracted human attention for thousands of years because, in the depth of winter, it is green. That made it a natural for legend and ritual, especially fertility rituals.

The actual kissing under the plant may have begun with the Greeks in their agricultural festival, according to The Wall Street Journal, but its kissing properties continue to this day where, as the old song puts it, we can see mama kissing Santa Claus.

To the ancient Scandinavians, mistletoe symbolized peace. Enemies meeting under the mistletoe declared a truce until the following day. On a more domestic note, disgruntled spouses kissed and made up under the greenery.

The Druids believed mistletoe possessed magical powers. Their priests cut the plant with golden sickles and gathered the trimmings on white cloth so the plant would never touch the earth and lose its enchantment.

The French didn't like it. They said mistletoe was cursed because it grew on the wood from which the cross of Christ was made and that it was doomed to be a rootless parasite forever.

In the Middle Ages, mistletoe was hung from ceilings in Europe to ward off evil, or it was dangled over doors to prevent the entrance of witches. If mistletoe was suspended over a crib, the child was said to be safe from kidnapping.

Viking lore describes the goddess of love, Frigga, who made each plant and animal promise not to kill her son Baldur. She forgot the mistletoe plant and Baldur was killed by a spear made from it. The white berries on the mistletoe are said to have been created from her tears.

When her son returned to life, Frigga proclaimed the mistletoe to be sacred. She kissed everyone who passed under it and decreed the plant should henceforth bring love. This is said to be the origin of kissing under the mistletoe.

So go ahead. Kiss under the mistletoe, have fun doing it, and give a nod to Frigga for starting a very enjoyable custom.
Power strip is basic for holiday lighting schemes

Experts on safety tell us not to overload circuits at Christmas time, but they don't tell us how. The solution to overloading is the power strip.

Born of computer users' need for many electrical connections, the power strip can have six or more outlets. There's no need to stack cords on a single wall outlet. The power strip has a circuit breaker that will turn it off, preventing a fire.

But it does more. Put the power strip on the floor, and you can turn on decorations with a touch of your foot. Gone are the days when you had to crawl behind the tree to plug them in.

The strips work just as well for outdoor decorations, but should be protected from rain and snow. Placing the strip in a plastic bag or under a wooden box works very well.

Other decorating safety rules include:

* Select a fresh green tree and keep it in water while it is in your home.
* If you select an artificial tree, check to be sure it is made with fire retardant.
* Position the tree so it is three feet away from any fireplace, candle, heater, heating vent, or other source of heat.
* Check each string of lights before using it. If a string has a frayed cord or any damaged light sockets, throw it away.
* Don't use indoor lights outside, because they may not be waterproof.
* Don't use outdoor lights inside because they burn hotter. Some lights are approved for both indoor and outdoor use, so you can use those in either place.
* If you have to use a ladder outside, use a sturdy one. Have someone steady the ladder if it is against something unstable, like evergreen branches. Don't try to decorate very tall trees.
* Unplug indoor and outdoor decorations when you go to bed or leave your home.
Click Here to print a copy of this puzzle.
Time to get happy!

Get up, get out, and get happy. Experts say that even if you have to fake it, you'll soon be merry -- or at least a little happier.

People can have a good reason to be wistful or even blue at Christmas. Family members are not always near, or physical conditions can limit activities.

Strange that just when we can't remember where we put the car keys, memories from 30 years ago are accessible in every detail. It's great to remember the good times, but to be happy today we need to stay in the present.

According to happiness guru Gretchen Rubin, the key is to actively plan for holidays and make new memories.

Here are some ideas:
*Consider some things you have loved: Songs, gift-giving, family. Start asking around early for churches that have carols and holiday activities. If you need a ride, ask at the church office.
* Find out who needs a gift and give it!
* Gather your own 'family' of neighbors and friends for a pitch-in dinner. It doesn't have to be on Dec. 25.

The bottom line: Make a plan and get out of the house. Do ask others about their plans; people often love to share holidays. Be grateful for the holiday you make for yourself. Don't compare this Christmas to happier times in the past and try not to compare this Christmas to the holiday you imagined it would be. Create something for yourself and enjoy it, whether it is a modest decoration and dinner with a friend, or an all-out bash.
The loo goes high tech

You'd be forgiven for assuming a toilet is quite simple enough and doesn't need to be made into another "smart" gadget. But it turns out that we can improve upon our old loo technologies in a variety of ways.

A startup called Shine Bathroom raised $750,000 in seed money to help build and distribute an accessory you attach to an existing toilet to make it a "smart toilet," according to an article in Tech Crunch.

The immediate goal, said the story, is to introduce new ways of cleaning toilets that are more ecologically friendly as well as provide tools to detect and even fix issues in the plumbing.

The long-term goal is to rethink the entire bathroom itself so it puts less strain on our natural resources (thinking way beyond low flush, apparently).

The toilet attachment is battery operated and includes a water vessel, a sensor, and a spraying nozzle that goes inside the tank. A third sensor fitted with an acceleromter is attached to the main line that fills the toilet's tank; the vessel is filled with tap water.

The water passes through a special filter that electrolyzes it via a current, and sprays with every flush to clean and deodorize. Shine says there are no soaps or detergents and that the technique is as powerful as bleach but without harsh chemicals.

The second feature is a bathroom assistant called Sam, which links to the hardware and sensors to identify problems like leaks. Sam can also link with Alexa to clean, check water levels, and other tasks.
Not too merry

In colonial New England it was once decreed that anyone found feasting, celebrating, or acting frivolous on the sacred day of December 25 would be fined five shillings.