What a great word!
Steve has 3 daughters. When one of them, in particular, calls him, I can always tell it is her. He says "hello" and then he doesn't say another word. But I can hear the constant buzzing of chatter on the other end. In the 23 years I've known him, this has always been the routine. The call is never short. Sometimes he will get up and wander around completing small tasks with the phone attached to his ear. But he rarely says a thing.
In person, it isn't much different. A very cheerful conversation that is driven by one line of thought process after another is the case. I too have a cousin that is fascinating to listen to. She's full of great stories, and somehow she manages to string them all together. The upside of this is I don't really have to participate. I just have to listen and give the obligatory nodding of the head from time to time. The downside of this is that although fascinating and wonderful stories to hear, I don't get to participate.
When Steve and I went to Scotland on our very first trip, and when we were standing in a typical tourist trap store packed with thousands of souvenirs to select from, I spied a tshirt on an upper hanger in the far corner. On it was the word: Blather.
The Blather tshirt was followed with the following definition: "To talk fooilishy at length -- often used with on."
Although I did not purchase gifts for everyone in the family, I convinced Steve to purchase this one tshirt. Now, don't misunderstand me. We love this child. She also has a good sense of humor. So she liked her gift. At least we believe she liked it.
And would I ever change the way she or my cousin chatter away? Never. So, child - Blather on!
Love, Mom and Dad (On this Mother's Day)
What's in a Name? CMW and the Annual Members' Meeting
When Clan MacFarlane Worldwide was created, the founding members strived to create an organization for our members and run by our members. This is why you will find that our corporate lingo is a bit different than most Scottish Clan Organizations.
So the Annual General Meeting for most organizations is CMW's Annual Members' Meeting ("AMM"). Why? Because we truly want our members to feel a part of what we all want to do. That means if you are a voting (paying) member, you get to vote every year for 3 new or returning Board Directors. That also means after you have been a paying member of CMW for a year, you too can run for a position on the Board of Directors. And we would LOVE for you to run for a position as a Director. That also means if the Board of Directors determines that a change to the corporate Bylaws should be made, they turn to the voting members to determine if the change is good for CMW.
We are pleased with how our corporation functions. After all these years, we can say "so far, so good!" That means that membership annual dues (which are, in my humble opinion dirt cheap), have always been used to further the goals of Clan MacFarlane Worldwide. We have lofty goals that are meant to continue to connect members with other members for the purpose of answering questions about heritage and family trees. We support archeological endeavors to, forgive me, "dig deeper" into MacFarlane history. We support local archaeologists to explore areas of MacFarlane lands for answers, and in some cases for new questions. And sometimes, our own members dig deep into their own pockets to finance these same endeavors.
We also use membership fees to sponsor athletes. We help defray their costs of competition, and sometimes we help to purchase competition kilts for our athletes. Just another great way to use membership fees. Right?
What else did we think about when we started CMW? We knew we would have many hosts for Highland Games. When you attend a Highland Game and you are greeted by a host, they are not "Conveeners" but instead, "Delegates." We chose that because we feel our tent Delegates represent CMW and its members. We just thought "Delegates" was a better representation for CMW.
We ensure our voting members can view the current budget and finances. We ensure our voting members see the Minutes from the Board of Directors' monthly meetings. We like our members to stay current.
We try to keep you informed of what is going on and what is coming up with CMW via Facebook, our website, the Loch Sloy! and even our new blog, this Diaspora. But the point is, we try to give our voting members, and even just our friends, information about who we are and what we are doing and where we are going.
But what you should always remember about CMW is that we are all volunteers. Nobody gets paid. We do this because we feel so strongly about our MacFarlane heritage.
We do have 501c3 status with the IRS. A group of us worked on the application to ensure we were approved on our very first shot. And that is exactly what happened. Banner moment for us!
So you see, the Annual Members' Meeting is an appropriate name for our corporate meeting. It will happen once again this coming weekend in Woodland, California at the Highland Games. We believe in member participation so strongly, that our corporate members' meeting will be broadcast. So even if you are in Japan, or Scotland, or New Zealand, New York, Florida, or Ontario, you can participate (the Technology wizards are feeling all the pressure). You can listen and learn. And the meeting will be recorded and a link of the recorded meeting will be provided to you.
The Annual Members' Meeting will be held at 2:00 p.m. Pacific Standard Time, and will be hosted by Delegates, Laurie McFarland Jackson (our current President) and Don Jackson.
So to answer the question "What's in a Name?" I would say, everything. We are Clan MacFarlane Worldwide!
Passover - Easter and the Hard Boiled Egg
Food again.... but it is one topic that can draw us all together. Right?
This Friday is Passover. Passover is that major holiday in the Jewish faith to celebrate the release of the Jews from slavery in Egypt. Celebrated over a period of seven days, there is always a seder feast on Friday. I just noticed that on the typical seder plate, there is always placed a hard-boiled egg. In fact, if you want to test that idea, and you happen to find yourself in Edinburgh Friday, you can join the Chabad of Edinburgh for their Passover Seder feast at the MacDonald Holyrood Hotel 8:00 p.m. Just be sure to send your R.S.V.P.
Sunday is Easter Sunday (and my husband's birthday, and our anniversary). Easter is the celebration of the Resurrection of Jesus from the dead, And those of us who celebrate Easter, have already scrambled (no pun intended) to buy a dozen or so eggs for hard-boiling and then dying the typical spring colors of pink, green, blue, pink, and yellow. Then somehow, the Easter Bunny will locate said hard-boiled and dyed eggs and hide them strategically so that our small children and grandchildren can commence to hunt for same eggs, jelly beans, chocolate bunnies, and more. Depends on your particular Easter Bunny.
So I wondered if there was a connection between the two traditions of use of the hard-boiled egg. Fortunately for me, someone had already undertaken the research to help us understand the two traditions. Is there a connection? You'll have to wade through this fascinating article about the eggs and their use in our traditions: https://www.haaretz.com/jewish/.premium-are-passover-eggs-and-easter-eggs-related-1.5461517 Several theories for both holidays are explored and explained. For me, I think it is just a very common and useful food that has taken on a purpose for the holidays. Besides, the egg is such a convenient little food full of so much nutrition. No wonder we all turn to the egg.
I will not even begin to relate the article to you. The hard-boiled egg (or the egg that was emptied by blowing it out) is indeed fully discussed. By the way, I have NO fond memories of blowing eggs for Easter. If you haven't experienced it, try it just once. And if you find yourself waking up from passing out, so be it.
I hope you enjoy your family and friends this holiday weekend. As for Steve and me, he has threatened a Red Lobster in my future. I'm hoping for something ummm... more to my liking.
Happy Passover! Happy Easter!
(And to my beloved, Happy Birthday, Happy Anniversary!)