November Nuances

We now reach the eleventh month of the year in the Gregorian and Julian calendars. It was called ‘Blotmonath’ by the Anglo-Saxons, meaning the month of blood sacrifice and we know it as November. It is the last month to have thirty days.

Birthstone: Topaz20181024_154344

Flower: Chrysanthemum, which was originally gold in colour and therefore named from the Greek prefix ‘chrys’ and ‘anthemion’ which means flower. There are now many shades  from white to red.  They typically have a yellow centre and symbolise optimism and joy.  Huge thank you to Auntie Ann for allowing me to photograph her particularly magnificent specimen.

Sporting events include the gymnastics world championship, Brazilian and Abu Dhabi Formula I grand prix, golf world tour championship, tennis Davis Cup final and snooker UK championship.

Sow and Grow daffodil, tulips, broad beans and kale outdoors. In a cold greenhouse, asparagus, beansprouts, peas, garlic, shallots, sweet peas, delphinium, verbascum, foxglove, cyclamen and lupin. Under cloches; try spring onion and pak choi.  For the windowsill indoors; basil, chive, dill and parsley.

A Selection of Significant Days:

  • 1 November – All Saints’ Day
  • 2 November – All Souls’ Day
  • 11 November – St Martin’s Day
  • 12-16 November – anti-bullying week
  • 14 November – world diabetes day
  • 16 November – international day of tolerance
  • 19 November – world toilet day
  • 21-27 November – road safety week
  • 23 November – St Clement’s Day
  • 30 November – St Andrew’s Day

IMG_20181111_185345739Armistice Day is commemorated every year on 11 November. This marks the cessation of hostilities between the allies of WWI and Germany. The document was signed in a railway carriage in a forest in Picardie, France and happened on the eleventh hour of the eleventh day of the eleventh month in 1918.  The armistice was set to expire after thirty six days and a formal peace agreement was only reached when the Treaty of Versailles was signed a year later.

November Awareness includes: pancreatic cancer, COPD, mouth cancer, men’s health, lung cancer, national novel writing month (wouldn’t dream of plugging my third novel at this point, obviously – but more news coming soon).

Events in history:

  • 1267 – Statute of Marlborough is passed confirming the Magna Carta
  • 1434 – River Thames freezes between London Bridge and Gravesend, Kent
  • 1468 – first recorded use of the rack as an instrument of torture in England
  • 1534 – Henry VIII becomes Supreme Head of the Church of England
  • 1558 – Elizabeth I succeeds to the throne on the death of her sister Mary
  • 1666 – first experimental blood transfusion takes place in England, using two dogs
  • 1701 – Anders Celsius, he of the centigrade temperature scale, is born20180927_141244-1
  • 1783 – last public hanging takes place in England
  • 1843 – a statue of Nelson is placed on a column in Trafalgar Square
  • 1859 – Charles Darwin’s ‘Origin of Species by means of natural selection’ is published
  • 1869 – Suez canal opens between the Mediterranean Sea and the Red Sea
  • 1874 – Winston Churchill is born
  • 1896 – first motor insurance policies are issued in UK
  • 1907 – first helicopter takes off
  • 1922 – Tomb of Tutankhamen is discovered in Egypt
  • 1957 – a dog called Laika is the first living creature sent into space
  • 1963 – John F Kennedy is assassinated in Dallas, Texas
  • 1974 – fruit and vegetable market at Covent Garden closes
  • 1989 – Berlin Wall dividing East and West Germany is demolished
  • 1990 – Cold War ends as NATO and the Warsaw Pact sign a treaty

scorpio-zodiac-symbol_318-63003sagittariusStar Signs: Water sign Scorpio and fire sign Sagittarius. The archer is creative, adventurous, truthful, generous and strong-willed. Also extrovert and optimistic, the archer embraces change with enthusiasm.

The gun-powder plot was discovered on 5 November 1605 when Roman Catholic conspirator Guido Fawkes was arrested in a cellar underneath the Houses of Parliament. His intention was to detonate 36 barrels of gunpowder in an attempt to kill King James I. We celebrate this event every year with Bonfire Night.

State Opening of Parliament dates back to Medieval times and marks the new session of parliament, allowing the Government to announce its plans for the coming session. The ceremony involves the Sovereign summoning members of the House of Commons to attend the Lords. Black Rod (responsible for security, buildings and services in the Palace of Westminster) is tasked with delivering the message. As part of the ritual, the doors to the chamber of the House of Commons are slammed shut to deny admittance. This is to symbolise the independence of the lower house from the Sovereign. Black Rod then strikes the door three times with a staff and is finally admitted.20181111_124841-1-1

Children in Need is the annual BBC charity appeal which was first broadcast in 1980. Since then, it has raised over £950 million to help disadvantaged and needy children in the UK (apologies for my attempt at drawing).  20181111_082744-1

Stir-Up Sunday is the last Sunday in November before the start of advent, when traditionally we all get to stir the Christmas pudding and make a wish … as I’ve never made one, my children can feel suitably aggrieved. I found this one from last year, lurking in the cupboard under the stairs!

Thanksgiving takes place on the fourth Thursday in November in USA and is a harvest festival celebration dating back to 1621 when the Pilgrim Fathers arrived in Massachusetts.

Black Friday is the day after thanksgiving. It is the first time in the year when retailers move out of debt and ‘into the black’.  It is believed to be the largest shopping day in America and with our global shopping habits, this tradition has now spread to the UK.

Blooming chez Haiselden:

And finally … in 1307 William Tell a Swiss national, refused to pay homage to the Austrian Governor and as a punishment was made to fire an arrow at an apple placed on his son’s head.  He did so, missed his son, hit the apple and the rest is history.

See you for the final time when we reach the month of December.

About Julie Haiselden

Since 1999, I've worked in the NHS and am blessed with a happy family life. I write books and am a very amateur blogger. As well as being a school alumna, I occasionally tread the boards. I enjoy rambling and photography (although my enthusiasm for the latter, outweighs my skill set). Since 2016, I've been part of the reviewing team at Whispering Stories.
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