Full Moon Party

We’re in the Florida Keys for New Year’s Eve, specifically staying on a houseboat at Mangrove Marina in Tavernier near Key Largo, and later in Islamorada for a New Year’s Eve “Full Moon Party” at Pierre’s on the beach. I’ll post scenes from throughout the day. First from Lazy Day’s in Islamorada, where we had…

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Nearly New Years

We’re heading to Fort Lauderdale today to meet friends for New Years, and stayed at the Sheraton in Center City, Philadelphia last night before this morning’s flight—in part due to the forecast of snow that would have slowed the roads. Here’s the scene from the Sheraton at night, before the snow, and in the morning,…

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Loneliness and daily life

Aaron Renn writes: If you are one of those people in a big city who is feeling lonely or disconnected, I’ve got a nearly sure-fire way to change things. Go look for someone who is even lonelier and more hurting than you, and go be that person’s friend. I’m always astonished that there could be…

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Jack Bogle’s values

A portrait of Jack Bogle, Vanguard’s founder: As living legends go, Bogle is a modest fellow, or at least he tries to be. “Call me Jack” is his normal conversation starter. He’s old-fashioned, even for an 88-year-old — the kind of guy who has simple rules for living a good life, codified in the aphoristic…

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Appearance and human persons

William E. May’s Catholic Bioethics and the Gift of Human Life is a great book for understanding the basis for pro-life advocacy and the vision so many have for a life-affirming culture rather than one which grants liberties procured at the expense of the rights of others. Concerning human rights and the appearance of human persons:…

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Jackson Magnolia

Kate Bennett reports: The south facade of the White House will undergo a dramatic change this week: the historic Jackson Magnolia, a tree that has been in place since the 1800s, is scheduled to be cut down and removed. The enormous magnolia, one of three on the west side of the White House and the…

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Sweet and silly Christmas things

The bells of waiting Advent ring, The Tortoise stove is lit again And lamp-oil light across the night Has caught the streaks of winter rain In many a stained-glass window sheen From Crimson Lake to Hooker’s Green. The holly in the windy hedge And round the Manor House the yew Will soon be stripped to…

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‘Christmas is about two caves’

I’m sharing Fr. George Rutler’s Christmas reflection, emailed by his Church of Saint Michael the Archangel in Hell’s Kitchen, my once-upon-a-time neighborhood, along with a photo I snapped from my friend Alex’s 21st and Walnut Philadelphia apartment lobby. What does it mean that Christians believe in the bodily resurrection? Fr. Rutler sheds some light on…

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Bountiful, but fake

I was walking through Wegman’s in Allentown, Pennsylvania earlier today, and at some point I stopped to observe the scene I’m sharing here. What struck me about these scenes from Wegman’s were, on the one hand, how this section of the grocery store is designed to resemble both an Old World-style public market and a…

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Christmas and ‘downtowns’

As Christmas nears, it’s natural to want to experience the spirit of the season, and that usually means visiting a place that is festooned with Christmas trees, garland, twinkling lights, and frosted storefronts. In other words, it means visiting a traditional downtown, and Matthias Leyrer suggests why that is: The architectural beauty and community space…

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