Monday, November 28, 2022

Love is on the way


I'm not sure why I bother, because the sky never looks as fantastic in a photo as it looks to the eye. 

The light was coming, and all these very dark clouds were going. It was so dramatic!

Meanwhile, I discovered that I was mistaken about youtube; they are not preventing people from linking to their content. They just changed the way it's done - you can't just highlight the URL and copy and paste it where you will; you have to click on "share" under the video and it gives you options. It may have always done that, but I didn't notice. 


Here is People Look East, all the verses, because I'm not sure Elizabeth knows it, and Clare says she doesn't. I will also provide a link to a lovely performance of it. The words to it are of Advent, but the sprightliness makes it feel like Christmas already. The link is in the title.

People Look East

People, look east. The time is near 
Of the crowning of the year.
Make your house fair as you are able,
Trim the hearth and set the table.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the guest, is on the way.

Furrows, be glad. Though earth is bare,
One more seed is planted there:
Give up your strength the seed to nourish,
That in course the flower may flourish.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the rose, is on the way.

Birds, though you long have ceased to build,
Guard the nest that must be filled.
Even the hour when wings are frozen
God for fledging time has chosen.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the bird, is on the way.

Stars, keep the watch. When night is dim
One more light the bowl shall brim,
Shining beyond the frosty weather,
Bright as sun and moon together.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the star, is on the way.

Angels, announce with shouts of mirth
Christ who brings new life to earth.
Set every peak and valley humming
With the word, the Lord is coming.
People, look east and sing today:
Love, the Lord, is on the way.

- by Eleanor Farjeon

Sunday, November 27, 2022

look East

Sunrise shouted for my attention this morning, and the only thing nearby was the ipad. But it was much peachier than this.

Anyway, it's Advent, and it puts me in mind of the hymn

People, look East. The time is near
Of the crowning of the year.
Make your house fair as you are able,
Trim the hearth and set the table.
People, look East and sing today:
Love, the Guest, is on the way.

changing over to winter

It was time to take away the fall decorations; the little pumpkins were wrinkled up, anyway. 

It didn't occur to me to freeze them for soup stock; I don't make it in the summer, so I'm out of practice in thinking about it. And I don't bother much with composting in the winter. 

I cut it up and put it outside in a bowl, in case any outdoor creatures would eat it - I have no idea! 

While out there I walked around - it was very overcast today. Past the shed there's a new ornamental cherry, like the one in the front yard. 

With one leaf on it. It's one of five young trees we bought this summer. 

It's pretty delicate looking, isn't it? It was nice to just poke around the bare bushes and trees for a minute. 

"I suppose all woods everywhere are really just different bits of the one wood, pushing up through the earth like the different bits of sky that shine through the clouds are the same sky."

Elizabeth Goudge, The Herb of Grace (aka Pilgrim's Inn)

Saturday, November 26, 2022

"an epic film in slow motion"

 "For us, the ordinary people of the streets, obedience means bending to the ways of our times whenever they are not harmful...

When we surrender to them without resistance we find ourselves wonderfully liberated from ourselves...From the moment we wake up these circumstances take hold of us. It is the telephone that rings; it is the key that won't work, the bus that doesn't arrive or arrives full, or doesn't wait for us. It is the person sitting next to us who takes up the whole seat; or the vibration of the loose window pane that drives us crazy.

It's the daily routine, one chore that leads to another, some job we wouldn't have chosen. It's the weather and its changes - which is exquisite precisely because it is completely untainted by human doing. It's being cold, or being hot; it's the headache or the toothache. It's the people we meet and the conversations they choose to start. It's the rude man who nearly knocks us off the sidewalk. It's the people who need to kill some time, and so they corner us.

When we live with others, also means we set aside our own tastes and leave things in the place others have put them. In this way, life becomes an epic film in slow motion. Little by little, thread by thread, it eats away at the old man's frame, which cannot be mended and must be made new from the ground up. When we thus become accustomed to giving up our will to so many tiny things, we will no longer find it hard, when the occasion presents itself, to do the will of our boss, our husband, or our parents."


                                                          -  Servant of God,  Madeleine Delbrel

Thursday, November 24, 2022

giving thanks

 It was Thanksgiving today! It went well, I think, although the turkey breast was a little dry. I suppose I should buy turkey more often, so I can practice my technique.

A client of my brother's gave him an apple crumb pie yesterday, still warm! That was nice. I made pumpkin, and that is enough dessert for three people over sixty-five, with a few chocolates. We made sure the cats had turkey canned food. 

Heavenly Father, gratitude fills our hearts today as we recall all you have given us. Keep us ever thankful and generous in your holy service.

- from Magnificat, November 2022

Sunday, November 20, 2022

the King

Today we celebrate the feast of Christ the King, on this last Sunday of the liturgical year. We sang this in church today -

At the Name of Jesus

'tis the Father's pleasure we should call him Lord,
who from the beginning was the mighty Word.

At his voice creation sprang at once to sight,
all the angel faces, all the hosts of light,
cherubim in heaven, stars upon their way,
all the heav'nly orders in their great array.

Humbled for a season to receive a name
from the lips of sinners unto whom he came,
faithfully he bore it, spotless to the last,
brought it back victorious when from death he passed;

Bore it up triumphant with its human light,
thro' all ranks of creatures to the central height,
to the throne of Godhead, to the Father's breast,
filled it with the glory of that perfect rest.

In your hearts enthrone him; there let him subdue
all that is not holy, all that is not true;
crown him as your captain in temptation's hour;
let his will enfold you in its light and pow'r.

Christians, this Lord Jesus shall return again
in his Father's glory with his angel train;
for all wreaths of empire meet upon his brow,
and our hearts confess him King of glory now.

- music by Ralph Vaughn Williams

online photo from St. George Episcopal Church, New York

Advent begins next Sunday - it is a time of preparation for Christmas. The church year follows the life of Christ; Advent, the time of waiting before his birth, begins the year in the same way that our lives begin at our conception, and those who wait for us to be born are busy preparing for us. 

*I tried to link a choir singing the hymn, but youtube doesn't seem to allow it anymore.

Saturday, November 19, 2022

not just death and taxes

 There are three things in life which you can depend upon: death. taxes. And me forgetting to send Gail a birthday card. (why, oh why??)

Wednesday, November 16, 2022

a little excitement

 Do you see that white? It snowed last night!

(didn't last long)

Monday, November 14, 2022

o shine again

 All faded is the glowing light
That once from heaven shone,
When startled shepherds in the night
The angels come upon.

O shine again, ye angel host
And say that he is near;
Though but a simple few at most
Believe he will appear.

  -  from Magnificat, November 2022

Saturday, November 12, 2022


All the windows are open; it's November twelfth. Next week it's going to be in the forties.

I came upon this image at the Tea with Mrs. Mourning Dove tumblr blog. It's from the blog Sweet Styled Home. I would love to make something like that. Got to get out all my fall-themed cookie cutters! 

Making something like this takes time, and attention. There are always other things which need to be done. That is the balance I'm always searching for, but my struggle is focusing on something creative and enjoyable and temporarily being able to forget about the other stuff, for a little while. 

A few days ago I noticed that my list of some of the blogs I follow was gone. Was this a blip of Blogger? I thought it might reappear but wasn't sure I wanted to wait. So last night I started re-doing my list, but can't seem get it where it used to be - I move the gadget down to the bottom, but it will not stay down there when I refresh. It insists on being at the top. Well, it's all free, so I suppose it's silly to complain.

When I first started blogging, there were free widgets online here and there for all sorts of things, and I got the one that would show two or three of your older posts below every new post you put up. It was a very nice idea, but now it's gone, and who's going to go back to read somebody's whole blog? It takes time. The reason I mention this is that I know I have to be careful to not repeat myself; when I re-read a book, it seems the same passages leap out at me. I want to quote them, but I know enough to search first, to make sure I haven't done it already. Except that, without those older posts appearing below, it may not matter anymore if I'm repeating myself - who's going to know? 

Anyway, I'm reading The Herb of Grace (Pilgrim's Inn) again:

"To get nicer and nicer you must love the sun and give good juice when you're bruised." 

                                                              - Elizabeth Goudge



Friday, November 11, 2022


 Veterans' Day here in the U.S., but Remembrance Day in many other countries. 

These hearts were woven of human joys and cares,
Washed marvellously with sorrow, swift to mirth.
The years had given them kindness. Dawn was theirs,
And sunset, and the colours of the earth.
These had seen movement, and heard music; known
Slumber and waking; loved; gone proudly friended;
Felt the quick stir of wonder; sat alone;
Touched flowers and furs and cheeks. All this is ended.

- from The Dead by Rupert Brooke

Thursday, November 10, 2022

best little cheesecake, ever

 It's my brother's birthday and I once again made him a cheesecake. I have the recipe on a card in my box, but I'd also pinned it, and I first went to pinterest to look for it. But the website is gone! All I know is it was a European woman (because everything is in grams), and I had commented more than once to tell her how I loved her recipe, and she answered. Now, she's gone!

So, in the interests of preserving the delicious things in life, I'm going to print it here. I wish I could give this woman credit, but I don't even remember the name of her site - it may have been Gourmet Kitchen Tales, because that's what it says when you follow the link. I don't know. (they're selling the domain name for $4,795!)

Anyway, I love this cheesecake, so here it is, for posterity:

  • 300g cream cheese
  • 200g plain Greek yogurt
  • 100ml light cream
Mix these thoroughly with your mixer, then add:
  • 1/2 c. sugar
  • 3 eggs, one at a time
  • 1 T. cornstarch
  • some vanilla
It's best in a 7-inch springform pan, with a crumbly crust of your choice already baked and cooled in it. Today, I used this recipe: mix together one half cup of flour (I used gluten-free) and one half cup of quick oats, one third cup of brown sugar, one quarter teaspoon of baking soda and some spice if you like. Mix in half a stick of butter, melted, or a quarter cup of oil, if you'd rather. Press it into the springform pan and bake at 350 for 15 minutes. Let it cool. Pour in the filling and bake at 350 till it's getting golden on top and maybe it's starting to crack. Or, till it doesn't jiggle too much when you shake the baking rack. (I can't give a proper baking time, since I'm still trying to figure it out)

The topping is fantastic:  heat up 150ml of heavy cream - don't boil! - till it's about to simmer, then take it off the heat and melt 100g of dark chocolate in it. When it's melted, add a knob of butter and some vanilla. Let it cool somewhat and then pour it over the cheesecake and chill the lot. This makes the best topping! It's thick and creamy. However, if you don't want the chocolate, I've also done this: spread a berry fruit spread all over the top, then sprinkle fresh blueberries all over it. Also, very good! 

Monday, November 7, 2022

success and failure

 So, I've slept the past two nights with an open window. It's November! That will end tonight, when it goes back to the thirties and in the fifties during the day. But while we still have it, it's wonderful (even though I have a headache).

Dianne's cat had to be put down; the vet said his insides were all twisted up. So unfortunate. Meanwhile, this big dog attacked a small dog on Friday while his owner was walking him. This little dog will be all right, thank God! Animal Control has been at the owner's house a couple of times, I hear. I hope this fellow will learn how to curb his pet. I called another neighbor who's got a small dog, to warn her. Such unnecessary drama. But I feel bad for Dianne, since her hopes had gotten up when her cat reappeared like that, and Bill told me another of their cats passed away without warning around the same time - her cats are all of a certain age. 

The window over the kitchen sink is clean!! It's harder every year to get in that sink and try to maneuver in order to wash that window - my brother helped out a little. It's done!

He had run over a butternut squash a couple of weeks ago, and we thought that was the only one; they have a way of wanting to grow outside the fence into the grass. But today he found three smaller ones - with goudges on them from either the mower or some garden implement, but we're very happy to have them! I'll cook them soon, because of their condition. 

Sunday, November 6, 2022


 O Jesus, to your servants give
The consolation they require;
And when the cloud of trouble falls,
With heavenly hope their souls inspire.
Be ever near us, Christ, to bless
And help us in your faithfulness.

- from Magnificat, November, 2022

Saturday, November 5, 2022

Indian Summer

 There was a frost a week ago, which faded the more tender plants. But now we're in the seventies, the air is moist and golden, the leaves are half off the trees and all under them. You can begin to see their structure, with bare branches beginning to make an appearance, and the distant hills are multi-colored and breathtaking. Everything close up looks burnished - it's all just fantastic. Who says November is dull and dreary?

From the American Meteorological Society:

What meteorological conditions constitute Indian summer? Three key elements to remember here.

  • It's a period of abnormally warm weather.

  • It occurs in mid to late autumn.

  • It occurs after the first frost.

Thursday, November 3, 2022

little bird

 My brother came home from work holding a small box. A little bird hit their window, and didn't survive. But he looked so perfect in the box, with his little eye open as if he was fine. Poor thing! He brought the box out to his pickup, and only then did I take the bird guides to try and identify it. So, going from memory, I think it may have been a brown creeper. It looks like this

this picture is from the internet

I want to see him again in the morning, to make sure - it seems important that we know what he is. I have heard of brown creepers, but they don't come to the feeder, or near the house. It got me thinking of all the wildlife that you don't see, so you don't know about it, and they carry on their lives nearby and you're unaware of it. It seems to me that if creatures are living on your property, it's a good thing to know it, and know about their life cycles. But then it seems like the idea of property seems almost ridiculous in light of these other beings, who are living nearby. (I am NOT one of those who thinks private property should be done away with! Just for the record.) 

Tuesday, November 1, 2022

the feast of All Saints

 We can compare the saints to the church windows which allow light to enter in different shades of color. The saints are our brothers and sisters who have welcomed the light of God in their heart and have passed it on to the world, each according to his or her own hue. But they were all transparent; they fought to remove the stains and the darkness of sin, so as to enable to gentle light of God to pass through. This is life's purpose: to pass through; it is the purpose of our life too.

-  from Magnificat, November 2022

Monday, October 31, 2022

Halloween count

When we go outside, Daisy will often go near the door, and it's difficult to come back in. I was dreading tonight, with all the kids coming by trick-or-treating, afraid she might try to run out. Well, she practically slept through the whole thing. I fed them as much as they wanted for supper, and she also had a vaccine today - whatever the reason, she was quiet and kept to herself. Even when she awoke, she had little interest. Whew!  Annie, on the other hand, growled at certain ones - we think it was the masks she didn't like; she seemed to like the princesses. There were many of those, with flowing hair in an assortment of colors - that seemed the main theme this year.

It was a very nice night to be out, mild with only a short spell of light raindrops. We bought plenty of candy, anticipating more kids than last time, since it seems to go up each year - except 2020 - but we had 139. About fifty less than last Halloween. 

Sunday, October 30, 2022

Good News!!

 Dianne's husband just called me - the cat came back last night! He must have been hiding since the attack, but it's been quite cold and he probably hadn't eaten - anyway, Bill says he's got part of his tail gone, and some external injuries, but otherwise his appetite is good and he doesn't cry when they pick him up. She'll bring him to a vet tomorrow. 

I'm so relieved! And amazed.

Saturday, October 29, 2022

warm colors and autumn things


Many of the leaves have fallen already, a lot from the heavy rains we had early in the week. Frosts threaten us every night now, but so far our pepper and tomato plants are fine, and so are the zinnias and marigolds. In fact, there are so many flowers, I had an idea today. 

I put out two medium sized pumpkins on the front step, next to a small table that's always out there, with a container on it. There's potting soil in there, but I don't always know what to do with it. It's only half-full, and I was thinking the marigolds would look very pretty there next to the pumpkins. Meanwhile, I was cleaning a shelf in the basement which holds some extra mason jars, and that's where I got the idea.

I cut lots of marigolds and put them in five pint jars, with water. They fit in the container perfectly. 

Can you see the jars in there? My thought was that canning jars can take being frozen, so if the water freezes, the jars will be fine, and if the flowers die, well they're going to die if I leave them in the garden, too. So they may as well be seen on the front step!  I thought I'd try anyway. 

They look nice, don't they? You don't see the jars above the rim of the container. I have no idea how long they'll last there.

Meanwhile, I bought myself this book of poetry

Who could resist such a cover, not to mention a poem a day through autumn? 

Thursday, October 27, 2022

in the blink of an eye

 Shortly after I got home from work yesterday, an older neighbor came by to ask if we had a fluffy black cat. I said no, but Dianne does. Well, there's a large, energetic dog on the next street and I guess he grabbed this cat and swung it around; the cat got away, ran around our forsythia hedge beside the house, but this dog got him again. He escaped a second time, but then our neighbor lost sight of him. He was yelling at the dog to let it go, and so was its owner, who felt pretty bad about the whole business. I ran over to Dianne's and told her husband - she was in the shower. I quickly fed our kitties and went out; Bill and Dianne appeared shortly after. This was an hour before dark.

We wandered around the back yard for at least thirty minutes, Dianne calling him. There are so many fallen leaves under every bush, making a search more difficult; we tried to figure out where he would have headed - this is impossible. We didn't see a body anywhere, we heard no cries. How could he have survived such an attack? It must be that he didn't, poor creature. 

Dianne is pretty philosophical about her cats, we've noticed. When my brother found Yogi had been hit by a car, and brought the body to Dianne's, she didn't cry. She has so many animals, she's seen it before so often. But if only we could find him, at least they could bury him.

I was thinking of how little I know my neighbors, and that it was good for us all to be looking for this cat together, trying to help, even though the circumstances were so unfortunate.

Monday, October 24, 2022

always learning something new

 I was sure that Daisy was going to become an engineer when she grows up

but now it looks like she'll be a washerwoman.

Thursday, October 20, 2022

the earth is full of the goodness of the Lord

I am already finished with the reading challenge I was following! I didn't expect it. It's the third year they've issued one, and I didn't finish the first. The second, I barely made it, but it felt like work. And then when they offered this year's, Angelina said that the books she wanted to read just seemed to fit into the reading challenge. This seemed incredible to me, but I thought I'd try it. And that's just how it was! So, it's October and I'm done. Not done reading, though. 


I heard a loud thud coming from the living room, and was almost afraid to look. But Daisy had knocked over the scratching post, and was wrestling with it. She's done this more than once - I guess she wants to teach it a thing or two. So cute. 

I feel inclined to re-read Matthew Crawford's Shop Class as Soulcraft. He is a motorcycle mechanic, among other things and he sees a problem in our distance from understanding how things work, things which are among us as everyday objects. He says: "A decline in tool use would seem to betoken a shift in our relationship to our own stuff: more passive and more dependent." I think of sewing; I need to make time for my projects, rather than hope I can fit them in. It's been a real problem lately. 

My brother just called to me - Daisy ate a piece of tomato. I tried to tell him she'd done this before - hadn't she? But no, it was Annie. (Having a blog can be very useful at times.) So, it seems we have tomato-eating cats. Not sure it's a good thing.

We have marigolds still thriving outside, and I know calendula is in lots of homemade salves, good for soothing the skin. But I think ours are tagetes, not calendula, so I will not be making anything with them. 

Wednesday, October 19, 2022

funny tomato

 I was cutting up tomatoes (yes, we still have some!) at suppertime and grabbed this one. The shape reminded me of the so-called ugly tomatoes at the supermarket, which are usually some heirloom variety. They tend to have a pumpkin-y appearance. But the top of it made me hesitate - this is a pepper. How weird! Not that it's red, because the green peppers do turn eventually, but the shape. 

Funny, isn't it?

Tuesday, October 18, 2022

Hail October, by Hal Boyle

 If the Lord whispered in your secret heart that you had but one month to live, and let you pick that month, which would you choose?

 I'd say October

The birds love it, the beasts love it, and man himself then stands upon the summit of the year. 

October is all the other seasons wrapped into a thirty-one day grab bag package tied with a rainbow ribbon. 

  It is the period when Mother Nature, the great dramatist, brings her traveling roadshow to a climax.

 This is the month that, like a cider press, squeezes out the best juices of all the other months; 

 the promise of spring, the sultry days of summer, the afterglow of autumn, the premonitory chill of winter. 

Everything that walks the earth feels an amber thrill, a tremendous, bubbling vitality that sings in the pulse. 

Now is the glory of the universe manifest. And in the mighty pageant of the hills, each patch of woods elects its own tree beauty queen. You like the dogwood? We don't quarrel. I'll take the maple, that yellow torch

It's as if everyone suddenly had been given magic color glasses. 

The stars bend nearer, and that big blob of moon - a child feels it is so close he could reach out with a knife and spread it on his bread like butter.

from Pixabay

The stag stamps in the hilltop and lifts an amorous bugle to the night. 

The squirrel, bright-eyed and bushy-tailed, becomes an annual miser. 

The bear invests his excess profits in fat, planning to live off the stored capital until he emerges from his hibernation next spring, cross and bankrupt. 

The wind at night now has become a violin, playing a love song for the young, a last tune of youth to the old. Do you stay awake to hear it? You'd better. He only plays a little while, this wandering fiddler in the dark.

October wears a crown, and makes every man a king. It bears the harvest superiority of the rounded apple over the petalled flower, the advantage fruition and achievement have over pale promises.

 April is the fledgling politician of the year saying, "Stick with me, we'll go places". October, the mature statesman, holding up the golden reward. 

There's no tax on it, so spend it while you have it. No October lasts forever, and there is no guarantee it will ever come again.

*again, about Hal Boyle

Monday, October 17, 2022

life with Daisy


If I go outside, Daisy is often on the other side of the door when I'm trying to come back in; I live in fear she'll run outside. Well, I'm not living in fear, exactly - but we don't want her getting out, but she is just curious about everything and very active, and she was living outdoors for a while before Sue took her in....

Anyway, I  often resort to grabbing the broom which rests outside of the back door, and sort of sweeping her inside while I slip in. Then, of course, the broom is in the house, with bugs possibly living inside it, according to my brother. So then we have to look for the first opportunity to get it outside again. 

My next project will be finding a new spot for the kitchen wastebasket, since she is making a habit of dumpster diving throughout the day, and sometimes tipping the thing over. 

Sunday, October 16, 2022

autumn mist


Nothing Gold Can Stay

Nature's first green is gold,

Her hardest hue to hold.

Her early leaf's a flower;

But only so an hour.

Then leaf subsides to leaf.

So Eden sank to grief,

So dawn goes down to day.

Nothing gold can stay.

- Robert Frost

Saturday, October 15, 2022

the struggle is real

 A local radio station here owns the rights to a dramatic reading of an obscure poem called "Hail, October" by a fellow named Hal Boyle. He was a journalist, and won a Pulitzer for his reporting during WWII. The recording itself, which is read by a well-known radio announcer from the period, maybe was made in the sixties, but could be older. There are different musical instruments waxing and waning in the background, making the whole thing very compelling, and the station's regular listeners look forward to it every year. Because they only play it in October and you never know what time of day you may get to hear it, so you have to listen all day - it's a real thing, for it's fans.

Last year I tried to find the words online, anywhere, but it doesn't seem to be written up any place, although I did discover a very poor quality recording of it on youtube, with Rodrigo's Concierto de Aranjuez as the background - very unsuitable for this piece, in my opinion. So I decided to try and transcribe it; I did manage to hear it on several occasions and I'd grab a notebook to try and write down a few lines each time. And so that's how I got it.

It's as complete as possible and I'm working on printing it here, but it's really nothing great to just read. This dramatic reading with all the music is the thing that people love to hear, and also that it was a local man reading it. So I have to figure out how to add some drama on the page, so to speak. 

To be continued. Wish me luck.

Thursday, October 13, 2022

peak color

The color in our neighborhood seems to be at peak color. It was warmer today and humid, overcast and occasionally rainy. But apparently later it's going to rain more, be very windy and stormy in places. Even so, I have noticed in past years that on gloomy days the swamp maple can still glow.

It won't get any better than this!

Monday, October 10, 2022

out of bounds

 If you've been around here a while, you may remember that at Christmas time, I put the small nativity on the lowest shelf of the corner cabinet in the kitchen. The cats always showed an interest - Dolly, Henry, Sweetie - but as long as I kept enough things in there, they understood there was no room for them. Then we got Annie, and she was not deterred by that consideration - I had to move it up a shelf to the middle section, and that did the trick. Now, Daisy is with us.

You are wondering, no doubt, why I'm thinking of this in October. I was sitting at the kitchen table yesterday and heard a sound; I looked over.

Can you believe it? What she was doing there, I don't know. Is it the challenge? "Why did you climb Mt. Everest? Because it was there!" Is that it? Anyway, this is the middle shelf. The piece of pottery got moved. 

And so did Daisy. 

The nativity is too small to be seen from the top shelf, but I did put it over the sink, on those shelves, once before, and that's what I'll have to do again. 

*Maybe that "conversation" with my brother the other day isn't so far off the mark. Maybe I really should move that "candle" on the top shelf. (but it wasn't on, so I don't think she was thinking of the candle - and I really don't want to move it! ) 

Sunday, October 9, 2022

gradual and silent encroachments

 "There are more instances of the abridgment of the freedom of the people by gradual and silent encroachments of those in power than by violent and sudden usurpations."

                                            -  James Madison