Hope you all have a lovely Christmas, my friends!
Anybody else notice that for Christmas this year it seems that buffalo plaid and gnomes are simply everywhere! I told you in my last post that we bought a new Christmas tree this year but then, I needed a tree skirt to go around it. After looking at the prices of tree skirts, the buffalo plaid blanket that my son gave me last year for Christmas suddenly became my new tree skirt! Buffalo plaid, it is not only used in decor but is on pajamas, shirts, jackets...why, it's everywhere! Yet, why it is called buffalo plaid and where did it come from? You know there must be a story behind it!
If you remember, I have written a post about "plaid" and "tartan." In America, we say "plaid" but in the UK, it is called "tartan". Of course, you should know that the tartan is from Scotland. Therefore, when those from Scotland came to America, they brought their tartan cloths with them, made into blankets. The Gaelic word for blanket is "pladjer" and the Native Americans, turned that into "plaid".
Okay then, the man we should thank for the Buffalo Plaid is a Scottish man named Jock McClusky, who was a descendant of "Rob Roy" MacGregor. (Click on that link to learn more about him.) Jock McClusky settled in Montana in the late 1800's and he was unusual at that time due to his fair dealings with the Native Americans. He was most respected by many different tribes. Jock McClusky would barter with them for buffalo pelts, offering things in exchange but the most coveted by the Native Americans were the blankets, especially with the red and black pattern. (The Native Americans most appreciated the deep red, considering it to give the owner special powers. And Jock McClusky, didn't tell them any different!) There, doesn't that just give you a warm, fuzzy feeling for Christmas! The story of how the native people were treated here in America is very often a very sad thing but I think the story of the buffalo plaid is a good one and so now, when you see this familiar red and black pattern, you will smile and think, oh, that's nice to see, especially at this time of year.
"Bury My Heart At Wounded Knee" by Dee Brown.... that is a book that I read years ago and I highly recommend it. OH, and one more..."Indian Givers: How Native Americans Transformed The World" by Jack Weatherford. If you read one or both of these books, you will thank me!
Gnomes? Why are they so popular this year? I have no idea! Trends always amuse me! I have read that gnomes are supposed to bring you luck and let's face it, after 2020 and 2021, we can use all the good luck we can get, right?
Last year, I heard this hymn "The Shepherd's Carol" for the first time. It was from Nine Lessons and Carols from King's College, Cambridge. I loved it so much. I have it here for you.
Merry Christmas to you all. Peace and Joy!