itsenäisyyspäivä // Independence Day

Finland’s Independence Day is a national public holiday and a flag day. It is held on 6 December to celebrate Finland’s declaration of independence from the Russian Republic in 1917 after the revolutions in Russia gave Finland an opportunity to withdraw from Russian rule.

Finnish Independence Day celebrations include:

     - raising the Finnish flag
     - remembering the Winter War (1939-1940) and the Continuation War
       (1941-1944) and honouring the veterans and the casualties
     - parades and torchlight processions
     - visiting cemeteries and war memorials
     - religious services
     - burning blue-white candles, and especially placing two of them in one’s 
     - Linnan juhlat (”the Castle Ball”) = the Presidential Independence Day
       reception at the Presidential Palace (which is broadcast on TV)
     - a TV broadcast of the movie adaptation of Väinö Linna’s war
       novel Tuntematon sotilas (The Unknown Soldier / Unknown Soldiers)

Hyvää itsenäisyyspäivää! // Happy Independence Day!
Suomi // Finland
itsenäisyyspäivä // Independence Day
6. joulukuuta // December 6th
kansallispäivä // National Day
liputuspäivä // a flag day
Suomen itsenäisyysjulistus // The Finnish Declaration of Independence
itsenäisyys // independence
itsenäinen // independent
itsenäistyminen // the act of becoming independent
itsenäistyä // to become independent 

vapaus // freedom
suomalaisuus // “Finnishness"
suomalainen // a Finn, Finnish
isänmaallisuus // patriotism
isänmaallinen // patriotic
sininen // blue
valkoinen // white

Suomen lippu // the flag of Finland
siniristilippu // the Blue Cross Flag (aka the Finnish flag)
lippunnosto // the raising of the flag
nostaa lippu // to raise the flag
puhe // a speech
pitää puhe // to deliver a speech
itsenäisyyspäiväpuhe // an Independence Day speech
kuorolaulu // choral singing
yhteislaulu // a sing-along, community singing
Maamme-laulu // the song Maamme (”Our Land”) (Finland’s national anthem)
kansallislaulu // a national anthem

muistaminen // remembrance, remembering
sota // war
talvisota // the Winter War
jatkosota // the Continuation War
sotilas // a soldier
(sota)veteraani // (a war) veteran
sodassa kaatunut // a person who fell in war
hautausmaa // a cemetery
sankarihauta // a war grave
sotamuistomerkki // a war memorial
kunniavartio // a guard of honour
seppele // a wreath

paraati // a parade
soihtukulkue // a torchlight procession
ylioppilaiden soihtukulkue // a torchlight procession by university students
ylioppilaslakki // a student cap
marssia // to march

jumalanpalvelus // a religious service
juhlajumalanpalvelus // a celebratory religious service
itsenäisyyspäivän juhlajumalanpalvelus // the celebratory religious service held on Independence Day
Helsingin tuomiokirkko // the Helsinki Cathedral
ekumeeninen, yleiskristillinen // ecumenical

kynttilä // a candle
sinivalkoinen kynttilä // a blue-white candle
polttaa kynttilää // to burn a candle
sytyttää kynttilä // to light a candle

itsenäisyyspäivän juhlavastaanotto // the Presidential Independence Day reception
Linnan juhlat // “the Castle Ball”
Presidentinlinna // the Presidential Palace
(Suomen) tasavallan presidentti // the president of the Republic (of Finland)
presidentti // a president
kutsuttu // an invitee, an invited person
vieras // a guest
pukukoodi // dress code
juhlapuku, juhla-asu // formal wear
kunniamerkki // an order (of merit/honour)
Jääkärimarssi // the Jäger march
kättely // the shaking of hands
kätellä // to shake hands
jonottaa // to queue, to wait in line
odottaa jonossa // to wait in line
tanssiaiset // a ball, a dance
tanssia // to dance
televisiolähetys // a TV broadcast
katsoa televisiota // to watch TV
pukujen arvostelu // the criticism/judgement of (people’s) attire/dresses
arvostella pukuja // to judge (people’s) attire/dresses

Tuntematon sotilas // The Unknown Soldier, Unknown Soldiers
sotaromaani // a war novel
klassikko // a classic
elokuva // a movie
elokuvasovitus // a movie adaptation
katsoa elokuva // to watch a movie
lukea kirja // to read a book
Click here to support Mom's Funeral Fund by Destiney Michelle Candler
Tanya Denise was a loving mother to her daughters Charity and Destiney, as well as her grandson little Arthur. She was also a wonderful wife to her husband Arthur J. Tanya battled breast cancer for years and won, unfortunately for this beautiful survivor , the cancer came back more agrresive th...

I typically don’t like to ask for help but at this moment in me and my family’s lives we really need it. My mom passed away after a really long battle with cancer. She passed on december 19th.  I miss her so much , she was truly the light in my life. Before she passed she requested a memorial service , we don’t have much support from extended family so I made this go fund me page to help with expenses of her funeral, as well as expenses to help keep us afloat in this time. I’m a broke college student, my sister is balancing two part-time jobs and taking care of her son and my dad is a 71 year old dude going through his own health issues, despite that we are paying a large amount of the funeral costs, and I just want to raise a little money to help with the funds as well as staying afloat while trying to honor my mom’s last wishes.

We DO NOT care if we reach the goal or not we would love as much help as we could get, any amount you can afford would be greatly appreciated. If you can’t afford anything, please just share this link. 

Thanks to everyone that shares and/or contributes.

It’s been 15 years since the tragic events of September 11, 2001, but the images of that day remain clear. Two planes were flown into the World Trade Center in New York and a third into the Pentagon in Virginia. Nearly 3,000 people lost their lives. Because of the actions of 40 passengers and crew aboard the fourth plane, Flight 93, the U.S. Capitol was saved. In New York, Virginia, Pennsylvania and across the country, people will gather today to remember the depth of our loss and the strength of our resolve. By visiting these places and hearing their stories, those who were taken will never be forgotten. Photo from the Flight 93 National Memorial by Tami Heilemann, Interior.

Oddly enough, media silent about Muslim bakeries that all refused to bake cake for gay couple

Yes, that’s bakeries plural. 

Stephen Crowder (a Conservative humorist and commentator) went to multiple bakeries in Dearborn Michigan and could find a single Muslim bakery that would bake him a wedding cake celebrating gay marriage.  

here’s the video:

But this post is not about how Muslims are big fat bigots and homophobes for not wanting to bake a cake for a gay couple.  We support the Muslim bakers’ rights to refuse service just as much as we support the Christians. As a matter of fact, I’ll take it a step further than Crowder does in his video and say that we believe any private establishment should have the liberty to refuse service to anyone for any reason. That doesn’t mean that they should or that it’s moral.  We loath bigoted discrimination but we just don’t like the government forcing people to do business when they don’t want to.  So, no, this is not about hating on the Muslim bakery at all.  Good for them for sticking with their convictions!  We wouldn’t want a baker to be forced to write anti-gay slurs on a cake either (yes, that an actual lawsuit that’s happening right now)

No, this is a story about media bias.  You see, when the media baited a Christian pizzeria owner into saying that she probably wouldn’t cater a gay wedding, the media went ballistic! There have already been thousands of stories written about Memories Pizza…nay, 1.6 MILLION!

And what about the Muslim bakers in Dearborn? Not a peep from the mainstream media.  At the time of writing this article, Google News only shows only 9 outlets that have covered this story and all of them are Conservative alternative media outlets. 

Where is the outrage?  Where are the lawsuits?  Where is the media frenzy?  Where are the cries of bigotry and intolerance? Nowhere to be found because the Muslim bakeries don’t fit the media narrative of oppressive Christians stamping on gay rights. 

The media doesn’t care about bigotry or intolerance.  They care about whipping people into a frenzy because it benefits their chosen politicians and makes them money. 

Thursday, April 23rd we lost a character we’ve known for over 10 years, Derek Shepherd, our one and only McDreamy. This is a character most of us have connected to, loved or hated, laughed at or cried for. None of us could prepare for his sudden and tragic death. To show our love and sadness over the death of Derek we are having a Derek Shepherd Memorial Week.  This week we will mourn the death of character who died too soon and so suddenly. I invite you all to join us in the Derek Shepherd Memorial Week 2015:

  • DAY ONE | April 27th >> Favorite Moment
  • DAY TWO | April 28th >> Most Heartbreaking Moments 
  • DAY THREE | April 29th >> Favorite Friendships/Relationships
  • DAY FOUR | April 30th >> Reasons Why You Will Miss Him
  • DAY FIVE | May 1st >> Favorite Episodes
  • DAY SIX | May 2nd >> Favorite Quotes
  • DAY SEVEN | May 3rd >> Free Choice

Join us in sharing our favorite moments, relationships, episodes, and why we will miss Derek Christopher Shepherd any way you can. Help us spread the word and join us in celebrating a character we’ve gotten to know for over 10 years.

The officials tags for this week will be: #ripderekchristophershepherd and #derekshepherdmemorialweek

Our official Derek Shepherd Memorial Week Blog is here: |X|

Please join us! Thank you and help us spread the word!



It seemed like the world had come to honor  Nelson Mandela at a massive memorial service drawing in about 100 heads of states, leaders and dignitaries. The service took place at the FNB Stadium in Soweto, the Johannesburg township that was a stronghold of support for the anti-apartheid struggle. Some of the distinguished faces included (in order of appearance); 

  1. President Barack Obama
  2. U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon + South African President Jacob Zuma 
  3. Spanish Prince Felipe de Borbon, Mexican President Enrique Pena Nieto + Canadian Prime Minister Stephen Harper
  4. Former Archbishop Desmond Tutu + U.N. Secretary-General Kofi Annan
  5. Former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton
  6. Singer Bono + actress Charlize Theron 
  7. Spain’s Prince Felipe
  8. Cuban President Raul Castro

“It’s supposed to be a funeral service, but you’ve never seen a funeral service like it. People are so proud and so grateful that he was with us, with us in our hour of need.We’re just so, so proud and happy.”

Tony Abbott was booed at the Gough Whitlam memorial service moments after Julia Gillard got a standing ovation.

The proceedings continued to go downhill when Tony giggled multiple times throughout the service whenever someone mentioned how much Whitlam had helped social equality grow in Australia. People gave him angry glances every time and tried to “shush” him to no avail.

The event reached its low point for Tony when he got up to speak and had to be tackled away from the coffin as he was screaming “I NEED TO STAKE HIM IN THE HEART! IT’S SYMBOLIC! I NEED TO HURT HIS BODY AS I AM HURTING HIS LEGACY! SYMBOLISM! SYMBOLISM!” while waving a home made wooden stake.


The black Bentley Limo rolled up to the curb at St. James Episcopal Church after circling the block. Inside, the jump seat emptied as Lady Wendy, Viscountess Mandeville, stepped out of the car wearing a deep blue dress, banded in narrow white accents at the neckline and sleeves.

People were quietly filing into the church. Lady Wendy paused, taking in the sense of mourning.

Next out of the Bentley was her husband, Lord Alexander, Viscount Mandeville, followed by Michael Jackson.

Lady Wendy later had a hard time remembering who else she saw. From the time she had heard Princess Diana had died of her injuries she had been caught up in shock. The things which stayed with her were the vivid moments which resonated with her own sense of loss and shock.

On the way home from a friends she had seen automobiles stopped at the side of the road. One driver’s head was down on her steering wheel, crying. Walking into her home, next to the 405 Freeway in Costa Mesa, a 900 square foot, two bedroom condo, with one tiny bath, she felt numb. She had never met Diana, never imagined she would – but knowing she was in the world had become a bright place on her horizon.

As the week unfolded Wendy followed every piece of news.

When Diana had married in 1981 it had seemed like a fairy tale, a girl finding true love, something Wendy had also, like so many girls, begun to dream of. As her own life had moved forward Wendy had also understood the shocks Diana had endured as her marriage unraveled into something very different.

Staying up through the night of the funeral service, tears streaming down her face, Wendy had grieved with most of the world for the People’s Princess, as her husband, Lord Alex snored beside her, just as he had when she woke him to tell him Diana had died of her injuries on August 31st.

When Alex called Wendy at work with the news there would be a memorial service in Los Angeles, several days later, had seemed like a chance for closure, to say goodby. Calling her at work was something Alex did not seem to be able to help doing. Not working himself, he was a stay-at-home mom to their son, Alex, Jr.

Wendy’s job as a receptionist at a prestigious law firm provided a sanctuary from a marriage which had rapidly devolved into a nightmare. The job also keep the rent paid, when Alex actually decided to write a check. Wendy enjoyed her time at the office, where life was more normal, she had been there since she was 20 years old.

As Alex told her about the service Wendy felt slightly giddy. Marriage to an English peer had been starkly without any of the accoutrements of glamor or privilege before. They could barely afford their small condo and the bills were never really entirely paid.

To somehow be closer to the woman who had inspired her, and so many people around the world, this would be worth remembering.

Alex had called to tell her, as he often did, he was going to see a ‘business associate,’ who did detailing on high end cars near Beverly Hills. Wendy no longer wanted to know what kind of 'business’ Alex was into anymore. Too much water under that bridge. Just a few weeks before Alex, Jr. was born in 1993 Alex had called to tell her he was, 'alright.’ and the accident was not his fault. As it turned out, it was his fault. He had totaled her last car, a modest but sturdy Nissan, which she had proudly bought new. Alex used her insurance money to put a down payment on the Jaguar he wanted. She had to dig into her 401K to prevent it from being repossessed, soon after the baby was born.

But when the phone rang a couple of hours later in her word day his voice was filled with real excitement.

“Wendy! You are not going to believe this. My friend Mark at the detailing shop, has talked to Michael Jackson and he wants to come with us to the Memorial Service, and bring Elizabeth Taylor.”

The next days were chaos. Liz had not been able to make it, but Michael had met them at the detailing shop so they could drive, together, to St. John’s for the service. Later, a letter of apology, and flowers arrived from Ms. Burton. Wendy, as was their practice, wrote the thank you note for Alex to send.

It was as if she had entered another world. Listening to the service, Michael Jackson sitting beside her, seemed unreal at first. Then, the words of the hymn brought back the enormity of Diana’s death and the reality of her own very different life. She tried to stop the tears but they began to well up in her eyes. She felt as a shock of understanding and comfort, Michael’s touch as, sensing her pain, he put his arm around her back and gave her a warm and gentle hug.

After the memorial ended, the minister leaned in, speaking briefly to Michael. They were to leave out of the rear of the church. The media had been notified of his presence.

Walking out into a blaze of cameras Wendy felt like the proverbial deer in the headlights.

Then, they were walking into the suite at the Hyatt Alex had managed to get by telling the management, yet again, he was the Ambassador for the Royal Family. Briefly, Wendy cringed. She knew well he had never met any one of them.

The next two hours were magic, as Michael played hide and seek with Little Alex as his father filmed and made comments.

From some deep place within her Wendy knew why it was important to Michael to be at the service, as it was for her. Diana represented a way out of the quagmire which was life for so many, no matter how poor, or how privileged.
This is a story which will take you through the full spectrum of emotions.


To Socrates, death was not a defeat, but a cure.

Hannibal Lecter and Bella Crawford, Takiawase (S2E04)


my fav