by Max Barry

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Region: Texas

Good morning Ladies and Gentlemen of Texas!

Today is:
National Cuddle Up Day,
Three Kings Day,
National Bean Day

Quotes of the Day:
“Hope smiles from the threshold of the year to come, whispering, ‘It will be happier.'” — Alfred Lord Tennyson
“You know how I always dread the whole year? Well, this time I’m only going to dread one day at a time.” —Charlie Brown
“Your present circumstances don’t determine where you can go. They merely determine where you start.” — Nido Qubein

Music of the Day:

Marvel's Avengers: Age of Ultron Music Video Parody - Ft. Peter Hollens
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6OmQ7BnvWDU

On This Day In History:
1912 Geophysicist and meteorologist Alfred Wegener presents his controversial theory of continental drift in a lecture at the Geological Association (Geologischen Vereinigung) at the Senckenberg-Museum, Frankfurt
1941 US President Franklin Roosevelt makes his "Four Freedoms" speech (freedom of speech and worship; freedom from want and fear) during his US State of Union address
1987 Astronomers at University of California see 1st sight of birth of a galaxy
2000 The last Pyrenean ibex is found dead after being crushed by a tree
2020 Crawford Steel executives Sid Spiegel and Gary Stern via holding company S & S Sportsco purchase the Montreal Alouettes from the Canadian Football League

Three Kings Day

On the twelfth day of Christmas, January 6, we celebrate Three Kings Day! Celebrated most in Spain and Latin America, but also across Europe, “El Dia de los Reyes”, as it’s called in Spanish, marks the adoration of baby Jesus by the three wise men.

WHEN IS THREE KINGS DAY 2021?
Christmas celebrations must go on until Three Kings Day on January 6! For Christians, Christmas Day is just the beginning of the festivities, as it kicks off the celebrations for the Twelve Days of Christmas.

HISTORY OF THREE KINGS DAY
In Mexico and many other Latin American countries, Santa Clause isn’t as popular as he is in the United States. Rather, it is the three wise men who are the bearers of gifts and leave presents in or near the shoes of small children. The holiday is also known by the name Epiphany and dates back to the 4th century. A grand feast would be held on this day to honor the occasion of Jesus’ baptism and to pay homage to the three wise men.

Many believe mysterious events preceded Jesus’ birth with perhaps the most notable being the appearance of the star in Bethlehem. This new star appeared in the evening sky just prior to the arrival of Jesus. Three wise men, or Magi as they were known, whose names were Caspar, Melchior, and Balthasar, traveled a far distance to pay homage to Christ. They brought with them fine gifts of gold, frankincense, and myrrh.

Three Kings Day, or El Dia de Reyes, remains an important holiday for Latin America. In addition to gift-giving, there is also a culinary treat that is specific to the holiday. Known as Rosca de Reyes (King’s Cake), this holiday dessert is a symbolic pastry. Shaped in a circle to signify a king’s crown, this sweet bread holds a special surprise. Inside is a small plastic figurine representing the baby Jesus. Whoever finds this token is obligated to host an upcoming party for the occasion Dia de la Condelaria (Candlemas Day) which occurs each year on February 2.

THREE KINGS DAY TIMELINE
200 AD
From Rome to Egypt

Though Three Kings Day originated in the Greek-speaking eastern half of the Roman Empire, Clement of Alexandria writes that followers of Basilides in Egypt also celebrate the day of Jesus' baptism.

December 25, 380 AD
Theophany

St. Gregory of Nazianzus refers to the day as 'the Theophany', saying that it commemorates the holy nativity of Christ.

385 AD
Epiphany

The pilgrim Egeria describes a celebration in Jerusalem and Bethlehem that she calls "Epiphany", which commemorates the Nativity.

1969
The Twelfth Day of Christmas

Revisions of the General Roman Calendar makes the date of Three Kings Day variable, occurring on the Sunday between January 2 and 8, though it is still more widely celebrated 12 days after Christmas on January 6.

THREE KING'S DAY STATISTICS
60,000 Rosca de Reyes

California’s Northgate Gonzalez Market sells about 60,000 Rosca de Reyes each year. They start selling the original, small rosca just before Thanksgiving. About a week before Christmas, they sell the cakes in four sizes and two varieties: original and filled. One year, the fillings consisted of guava and cheese or pineapple and cajeta.

2,065.43 meters World Record
In 2019, chefs from La Universidad Vizcaya de las Americas were awarded the Guinness record for the longest Rosca de Reyes bread in the world. Measuring at 2,065.43 meters, the lengthy traditional bread beat the previous world holder for the longest loaf, which was Switzerland. Carlos Tapia of Guinness World Records for Latin America verified the length of the bread and its new world record, noting that the previous record held by Switzerland measured in at 973.24 meters. The ring also included more than 7,000 dolls inside of the pastry.

200,000 people annually
Every year in Mexico on the eve of Three Kings Day, a mile-long Rosca de Reyes cake is made to celebrate the holiday. More than 200,000 people gather annually in Zocalo Square to eat a piece of the King’s cake or take some home to save for later. Starting in 2018, Mexico City’s government emphasized that a portion of the delicacy shall be made without sugar so that people who need to avoid sweets are also able to partake in the tradition.

THREE KINGS DAY FAQS
Why do we celebrated Three Kings Day?

Three Kings Day is considered the end of Christmas celebrations, representing the day the Three Wise Men gave gifts to Jesus Christ.

What do they eat on Three Kings Day?
A traditional Three Kings Day meal consists of a starter of soup or salad, a main course of picadillo meat with rice and beans (though some families exchange beans for corn or peas), and a King’s cake for dessert.

Is Three Kings Day a religious holiday?
Three Kings Day is a religious Christian and Catholic holiday mostly celebrated in Latin America and Spain.

THREE KINGS DAY ACTIVITIES
Get a “Rosca de Reyes”

The King Cake tradition is alive in New Orleans as well as across South America, and recipes to make one are found fairly easily online. Imagine a deliciously sweet cake with cinnamon and sugary sauce, with a variety of fillings depending on how decadent you’re feeling.

Read the Bible
If you’re going to celebrate a Christian festival, why not read the gospel it’s all based on. Twelfth night (Epiphany) marks the baptism of Jesus Christ by John the Baptist. The word “Epiphany" also means “manifestation" and celebrates the revelation of God in human form as Jesus Christ. Start at Matthew 2:11, and see what happens.

Jump in some freezing cold water
In Prague, there’s a traditional Three Kings swim in the Vltava River. People wear speedos, some of them wear crowns, and then they jump from a barge into the water. Afterwards they drink mulled wine and eat delicious, warming Czech snacks.

5 FACTS ABOUT THREE KINGS DAY
It has many names

Three Kings Day is also widely known as Epiphany, Little Christmas, Theophany, Baptism of Jesus, Denha, and Dia de Los Reyes.

Customary cakes
In some cultures, small ring-shaped cakes called Rosca de Reyes are baked with a plastic baby figurine inside, representing baby Jesus.

There may have been more than three Magi
The Bible does not specify the names or number of Magi who visited the baby Jesus.

Jesus received interesting gifts
Gifts of gold, resin myrrh, and frankincense oil were given to Jesus, each serving symbolic importance.

Treat filled shoes
Just like stockings are hung on Christmas for receiving presents, children fill their shoes with treats for the camels of the Three Wise Men and leave them out.

WHY WE LOVE THREE KINGS DAY
A reason for more gifts

Christmas isn’t the end of presents! In Europe, children look forward to receiving more gifts on Three Kings Day, lining their shoes up outside their doors so the Three Kings will know to leave their gifts inside.

An excuse for more eating
Three Kings Day is celebrated in South America with a delicious dinner crowned with a “Rosca de Reyes” or King Cake for dessert. The “Rosca de Reyes” is a round cake with a plastic Jesus figurine hidden inside, and the person at the party who finds the baby Jesus has to make tamales for everyone on the Day of the Candles, which comes on February 2.

It has fun traditions
Many families leave a box of grass or hay and some water for the Three Kings’ camels (and horses and elephants) to eat. The camels usually leave a trail of hay behind that children can follow to find their gifts.

https://nationaltoday.com/three-kings-day/

Coronavirus updates: Georgia becomes fifth state to report more contagious virus; Montana to lift mask mandate; FBI warns of fraud schemes
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/health/2021/01/06/covid-news-georgia-virus-montana-mask-mandate-fbi-scams/6554528002/

Fact check: What's true and what's false about the 2020 election
https://www.usatoday.com/story/news/factcheck/2020/11/17/fact-check-2020-election-whats-true-and-whats-false/6266732002/

Why 'Jeopardy!' star Ken Jennings doesn't want to replace Alex Trebek, how James Holzhauer remembers host
https://www.usatoday.com/story/entertainment/tv/2021/01/05/jeopardy-host-ken-jennings-talks-replacing-alex-trebek/4094254001/

Is your Bed Bath & Beyond closing? See the list of stores slated to close by the end of February 2021
https://www.usatoday.com/story/money/shopping/2021/01/05/bed-bath-beyond-store-closures-2021-february/6550172002/

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Texas BINGO – New Round!
Round 19: Texas Trails BINGO

There are many great hiking trails, running trails, mountain biking trails and scenic trails in Texas. We should play BINGO with some of our Texas Trails!

Instructions:

1. Go to https://osric.com/bingo-card-generator/ to generate your own BINGO card based on these settings:

Bingo Card Basics:
Card Title: Texas Trails BINGO
Word List (separated by commas):

Guadalupe Peak Texas Highpoint Trail,
Riverplace Nature Trail,
The Lighthouse Trail,
Barton Creek Greenbelt Trail,
Lady Bird Lake Trail,
Santa Elena Canyon Trail,
The Window Trail,
Lost Mine Trail,
Eagle Mountain Lake Park Trail,
Emory Peak Trail,
Enchanted Rock Summit Trail,
Knob Hill Trail,
North Shore Trail,
Turkey Creek Trail,
Arbor Hills Nature Preserve Trail,
White Rock Lake Trail,
El Paso Tin Mines Trail,
Chinquapin Loop Trail,
Canyon Ridge Trail,
Enchanted Rock Loop Trail,
Hillview Nature Trail Loop,
Oak Cliff Nature Preserve Trail,
Walnut Creek Trail,
San Gabriel River Trail,
Wolf Mountain Trail,

Free Space:
Include a free space?:
No
Free Space Text: Not applicable, leave blank.
Free Space Description: Not applicable.
Free Space Placement: The default setting is center but do not bother with it as it is not applicable.

Card Size:

Number of Squares Wide: 5
Number of Squares Tall: 5

Printing Options:
Number of cards to create:
1

Press the "Generate Bingo Cards" Button. Take a screenshot of the card and save it onto your computer. We will be using Microsoft Paint to strike out the locations on the card as they are called out.

This is a sample of an acceptable BINGO card for this game:
https://i.imgur.com/BjXDySh.png

2. From now on until the end of the game, I will announce a Texas Trail for you to strike out each day.

Rules: Your goal is to cover 5 lines of those squares in a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal row. Each of the 5 lines corresponds to a letter in the word BINGO. When you have a BINGO, then you have won the game.

This is a sample of an acceptable winning card:
https://i.imgur.com/BpeHm54.png

To start the game, today's Texas Trail to strike off is: El Paso Tin Mines Trail,

3. The first person to complete their card should upload it to imgur.com or any other image hosting site and post this message on our Texas RMB: BINGO! and a link to your completed card that you have uploaded to the image hosting site.

Good luck and have an absolutely fantastic, healthy and safe day everyone!

Your Buddy Verner

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