December, 2011

In this Issue:

 President's Message  Coming Events
 December Holiday Potluck  December Celebrations
 Robert Burns Dinner  Know the Clans
 Ed Miller Concerts  Caledonian Society Officers
 Cherish the Ladies Concert  General Meeting Minutes
 Hogmanay  Important Dates in December
 A Story of Christmas  Dues Reminder

President's Message

Here we are again at the holidays and our Society is busy with celebrations! We have Thanksgiving, followed closely by St. Andrew’s Day, which leads into our Christmas Pot Luck, followed by our own Christmas and New Year’s chaos. Then we have a January meeting on the 12th 2012 and Robert Burns Night on the 28th. If that doesn’t make your head spin—it surely does mine.

I am excited about getting to see you all at any or all of these special occasions. I do hope that your own Christmas and New Year celebrations are both happy and healthy. Try to make it out to our social affairs and greet your friends in person and share some hugs. St. Andrew’s Day is November 30th, a Wednesday and it starts at 5:30pm with a NO HOST bar, followed by some snack foods and includes some music and surprises. Our committee co-chairs for this fun evening are Jesse Lopez and Teresa Potts, so come out and get to know them. They also are Area Chairs at the Games. We will have the pleasure of hearing the choral group CELTICA at the Pot Luck on December 8. Then on January 28th, we will celebrate Robert Burn’s birthday with lots of traditional offerings—from food to the poems and music, with a few new surprises added to the program. This event will be at the Fiesta Inn, 2100 S. Priest Drive, Tempe, AZ. We have also asked them to hold a small block of rooms for us and they have agreed to a special price of $119.00 plus tax. The cost of the dinner will be $50 per person, and I am happy to tell you that we have been to this location before and we have the same chef in place and he is so very gracious about preparing the Haggis—he likes it: Surely he is one of us, eh?

Make your plans and mark your calendars now. Book a room if you have far to travel, as I do myself.

Warmest wishes to each of you Scots, as we close out 2011 and welcome 2012 ~ until then,

Jean Latimer, President

December Holiday Potluck

Our annual holiday pot luck dinner will be held on December 8 at the Irish Cultural Center at our usual meeting time—6:45pm.. Bring your own service and drink along with your yummy dish to share. This is always a time of good food and fellowship. PLEASE JOIN US.


Robert Burns Dinner

Once again we will be celebrating Robert Burns at our annual dinner in his honor. This year’s dinner will be held on Saturday, January 28, 2012 at the Fiesta Inn located at 2100 S. Priest Drive, Tempe, AZ. Tickets are 50. per person. You can purchase advance tickets here. Join us for an evening of fun, food, music and a few surprises.

Ed Miller Concerts

Edinburgh native Ed Miller, Scottish folk singer and recording artist will be appearing on Saturday, December 3 from 6 to 9 pm at the home of Mark Goldstein and Liz Warren, 1625 W. Western Star Blvd, Phoenix. There is a $15 per person admission. Drinks and light snacks will be provided. RSVP for tickets is required at 602-437-1767. Ed’s CD’s will be available for purchase. You can learn more about Ed on his web site His CD “Lyrics of Gold”, a collection of Burns songs, was featured in Sing Out magazine as one of the four best Robert Burns CD’s of recent times.

Ed will also be appearing on December 2 at 7pm at Light & Life Free Methodist Church, 2797 Willow Creek Rd. Prescott, AZ. Tickets are $17 at the door--$15 advance at Celtic Crossings Pub at Gateway Mall. Info: 928-771-1218

Cherish the Ladies Concert

The Irish Cultural Center, located at 1106 N. Central Ave, Phoenix will be presenting Cherish the Ladies in concert on Friday, December 16 at 7pm. Tickets are $25. Only 200 tickets will be sold for this event so order your tickets early by contacting the ICC at 602-258-0108.

Hogmanay More Important Than Christmas in Scotland

Until recently Christmas in Scotland was celebrated very quietly as a religious day or not celebrated at all. Many are not aware that Christmas celebrations were banned for nearly 400 years either by the Church or Government. Under Oliver Cromwell, Parliament banned Christmas celebrations in 1647. The ban was lifted after Cromwell’s downfall in 1660. But in Scotland, the stricter Scottish Presbyterian Church has been discouraging Christmas celebrations from as early as 1583. After the Cromwellian ban was lifted elsewhere, Christmas festivities continued to be discouraged in Scotland. In fact, Christmas remained a normal working day in Scotland until 1958.

The Scots made up for the lack of Christmas festivities with the celebration of the New Year—Hogmanay. As Christmas celebrations are winding down elsewhere, parties in Scotland are just getting underway. Hogmanay—a four to five day event including parties, street festival (including fire festivals that are Viking in origin) are starting.

The impulse to party, and to put the products of Scotland’s famous distilleries to good use, could not be repressed. In effect, Hogmanay became Scotland’s main outlet for the mid-winter impulse to chase away the darkness with light, warmth and festivities—just as their Druid ancestors did.

A Story of Christmas
By Bill Vaughan

No one is certain when Bill Vaughan’s “A Story of Christmas” first appeared in the Kansas City Star but it has become one of the most cherished stories in the newspaper’s archives. The Star began to reprint it as early as 1959. Vaughan was the longtime resident humorist at the paper. He wrote the Starbeams column for more than 30 years as well as witty essays. At the time of his death in 1977 Vaughan was associate editor of The Star.

“Tell me a story of Christmas,” she said. The television mumbled faint inanities in the next room. From a few houses down the block came the sound of car doors slamming and guests being greeted with large cordiality.

Her father thought awhile. His mind went back over the interminable parade of Christmas books he had read at the bedside of his children. “Well,” he started, tentatively, “Once upon a time, it was the week before Christmas, and all the little elves at the North Pole were sad.”

“I’m tired of elves,” she whispered. And he could tell she was tired, maybe almost as weary as he was himself after the last few feverish days.

“OK,” he said. “There was once, in a city not very far from here, the cutest wriggly little puppy you ever saw. The snow was falling, and this little puppy didn’t have a home. As he walked along the streets, he saw a house that looked quite a bit like our house. And at the window…”

“Was a little girl who looked quite a bit like me,” she said with a sigh. “I’m tired of puppies. I love my Pinky, of course. I mean puppy stories.”

“OK,” he said. “No puppies. This narrows the field. But I’ll think of something. Oh, sure. There was a forest, way up in the North, farther even than where Uncle Ed lives. And all the trees were talking about how each one was going to be the grandest Christmas tree of all. One said: ‘Christmas Tree? You? Who would want you?’

“No trees, Daddy,” she said. “We have a tree at school and at Sunday School and at the super market and a little one in my room. I am very tired of trees.”

“You are very spoiled,” he said.

“Hmmm,” she replied. “Tell me a Christmas story.”

“Let’s see. All the reindeer up at the North Pole were looking forward to pulling Santa’s sleigh. All but one, and he felt sad because…” he began with a jolly ring to his voice but quickly realized that this wasn’t going to work either. His daughter didn’t say anything; she just looked at him reproachfully.

“Tired of reindeer, too?” he asked. “Frankly, so am I. How about Christmas on the farm when I was a little boy? Would you like to hear about how it was in the olden days, when my grandfather would heat up bricks and put them in the sleigh and we’d all go for a ride?”
“Yes, Daddy,” she said, obediently. “But not right now. Not tonight.”

He was silent, thinking. His repertoire, he was afraid was exhausted. She was quiet too. Maybe, he thought, I’m home free. Maybe she has gone to sleep.

“Daddy,” she murmured. “Tell me a story of Christmas.”

Then it was though he could read the words, so firmly were they in his memory. Still holding her hand, he leaned back:

“And it came to pass in those days, that there went out a decree from Caesar Augustus that all the world should be taxed…”

Her hand tightened a bit in his, and he told her a story of Christmas.

Coming Events

Dec 2 Prescott—Ed Miller Concert
Dec 3 Phoenix—Ed Miller Concert
Dec 4 Flagstaff—Ed Miller Concert
Dec 8 Membership Meeting—Annual Holiday Potluck
Dec 16 Cherish The Ladies Concert—ICC 7pm
Dec 25 Christmas
Dec 31- Jan 1 Happy Hogmanay
Jan 1 Happy New Year
Jan12 Membership Meeting
Jan 28 Robert Burns Dinner

December Celebrations

Dec 1 John & Lori Steadman—Anniversary
Dec 1 Lewis Mathieson—Birthday
Dec 1 David & Janice Mathieson—Anniversary
Dec 2 Don Hoeck—Birthday
Dec 4 Gary Kains—Birthday
Dec 7 Wade Richardson—Birthday
Dec 7 Sharon Logan—Birthday
Dec 8 Darlene & Menno Funk—Anniversary
Dec 8 Quin McQuarrie--Birthday
Dec 9 Harold & Pam Stewart—Anniversary
Dec 9 Angelica MacFarlane—Birthday
Dec 11 Sandra Macintyre—Birthday
Dec 12 Bill Montgomery—Birthday
Dec 13 Phyllis Baum—Birthday
Dec 14 Tina Deloghery—Birthday
Dec 15 Ann Titchbourne—Birthday
Dec 16 Joseph Anthony—Birthday
Dec 18 Muriel Kremb—Birthday
Dec 18 Michele Hunt—Birthday
Dec 19 Dan Neel—Birthday
Dec 19 Gordon McClimans—Birthday
Dec 20 John & Kathleen Tennyson—Anniversary
Dec 21 Karen Murdock—Birthday
Dec 22 Dave McKell—Birthday
Dec 23 Stephen & Sandra Glasscock—Anniversary
Dec 24 Susie McDaniel—Birthday
Dec 24 Paul & Cheryl Bell-Anniversary
Dec 27 Kenya Griffith—Birthday
Dec 27 Paul & Genie Smith—Anniversary
Dec 28 Ray & Ann Titchbourne—Anniversary
Dec 29 James Ramsey—Birthday
Dec 29 Susan & David Hawkins—Anniversary
Dec 30 Edna McDonald--Birthday


Know the Clans
By Ron Dempsey


The name More can be associated with Clan Gordon and also Clan Leslie. It would be natural to find the name with more than one clan since it is a general description that fit a variety of individuals within the “Gaeltacht”. Notice the spelling More, not Moore. Moore is one of those Scottish names that has two sources of origins and can be spelled in a variety of ways so that it is not always possible to determine the exact source for any particular family that bears the name.

In a Highland setting, the most likely origin of the name is derived from Gaelic. Mor, (or Mhor) depending on the grammar and sentence structure used as an appellation is a descriptive term for large, older, or senior and when anglicized is often spelled Moor, Moore, More and sometimes Moir.

In the Lowlands, where the majority of names are under the influence of Scots Inglis, the name had its origins in generic place names descriptive of a moor or heath. It has become entrenched in Scottish nomenclature as Muir and from it stemmed Moor, More, Moore and Moir.

The chief of the name were the Mures of Rowalian in Ayrshire. The oldest documentation of the name was one Thomas Delamore {Thomas of the moor) in 1291 who served as executor for the mother of King John Balliol. The famous naturalist John Muir who, born in Dunbar in 1838, was a pioneer in forest conservation and was instrumental in getting Yosemite made a National Park in the United States.

The name is also very strong in Ireland. In county Leix just west of Dublin, there was a clan by the name of O’More, a name derived from the Gaelic for descendants of the large or senior as described above.

Society Meetings
Regular membership meetings are held the second Thursday of each month at 6:45 pm at the Irish Cultural Center located at 1106 N. Central Avenue, Phoenix. Come join us, or log on to, or call 602-431-0095
Caledonian Society Officers

President: Jean Latimer—602-867-6507
Vice President:
Tim Wallace—602-740-0575
Treasurer: Joanne G.—602-431-0095
Games Chair: Jason Temple—602-920-5445
Recording Sec: Inara Tabir
Corresp. Sec: Kay Morneau—480-503-0341
Trustee: Alan Ramsdell—480-969-8400
Trustee: William Wallace—480-838-7055
Past President: Elizabeth Grant—602-509-1146
Newsletter Editor: Jo Ramsdell—480-969-8400

The Caledonian Society of Arizona
General Meeting Minutes

November 17, 2011

The President called the meeting to order at 6:50pm, following the sale of 50/50 tickets at the door. She called on Mark Pelletier to lead the Pledge of Allegiance, and he took the time to explain how he taught his sons to say it correctly—with no pause after “one nation under God”. Thank you, Mark.

Jean asked us to think especially of our Military, who died on our behalf, as we gave a moment of silence to honor The Flowers of the Forest.

We had two new visitors join us at this meeting. They are Trevor J. Mahan and Cimberil Banton. Several of our newest members have taken on responsibilities and we want to thank them for their participation. Susan Anderson donated to the Door Prizes and the Refreshments. Audrey Anderson has taken on building us a new membership list in Excel that we can use for mailings, etc.

Jean entertained a motion to approve the minutes of the last meeting as written in the Desert Highlander. William Wallace made the motion and Jean Whyman gave the second. Motion approved. The Treasurers report showed $5,366.40 in the checking account as of October 31, 2011.

Jean reminded everyone about the St. Andrew’s Gathering and the December Pot Luck on November 30th and December 8th respectively. She had a sign-up sheet to pass around for the Pot Luck. If you wish to sign up you may call her at 602-867-6507 or e-mail

Tim Wallace has submitted his resignation effective immediately. However, we are blessed to have Joseph Wehunt doing our programs, so we will not try to fill this office until the new slate is prepared in April 2012.

The next meeting will be January 12, 2012, and we will be in a downhill run to the Games, so if you have an interest in helping us with that effort, please join us. Meeting will be at 6:45pm at the ICC, 1106 N. Central Ave. Phoenix.

Respectfully submitted by
Inara Tabir, Recording Secretary

Important Dates in December
Dec 22 Winter Solstice
Dec 25 Christmas 
Dec 26 Boxing Day 
Dec 31 New Year's Eve 

Dues Reminder

REMEMBER: Dues for the Caledonian Society should be paid in January 2012.

Family: $40 Single: $25. Pay online in the Shoppe.