Signs of the 80’s

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Last week, if you watch “American Idol” television show, you saw some fun and

amazing signs of the 80’s:

There was the ankle bracelet with the ball that swung around and you could

jump over it, known as a “Skip It.”

There was the iconic basic colored cube called, “Rubik’s Cube.”

One of the young people called the night time sleeping toy, the Glow Worm,

a “centipede.” Not sure where they thought the 100 legs were?

There were the fun boxing guys who my babysitting kids broke within a week

or two after my son received it for Christmas in the 80’s: Otherwise known as,

“Rock ‘Em Sock ‘Em Robots.”

There was the two women who really ‘chant’ their songs, rather than sing

them, known as “Salt and Peppa.” They sang and performed in a sexy song

with some good looking guys, “Push It.”

(Yes, they also are part of Geico’s commercials which like to bring back

oldies but somewhat goodies.)

David Hasselhoff, who is going to be in another episode of the movies that all

are called, “Sharkanado,” stopped by to get some laughs and elicit some

memories of his show, “Bay Watch.”

There was Boy George, who was the mentor and coach for the young

contestants. He was looking great, gave sound musical advice and

showed his caring, empathetic character.

The Judges were very gregarious and giving good critiques I agreed with 100%.

Harry Connick, Jr. seemed quite happy and pleasantly complimenting almost all

of the performers.

Jennifer Lopez is always beautiful and kind in her appraisals. She had one moment

when she had ‘goosies’ her highest praise for being moved by someone’s singing.

Keith Urban was singing to all of the contestants’ songs and got up and danced to

a couple. He is a genuine and caring man. I feel the comment he mentioned during

Joey’s performance was honest:

“My wife, Nicole, and my two daughters are up and dancing at home, with you as

you sang.”

Ryan Secrest is still a gracious, likable host. He hugs, shakes hands or puts an

arm around each of the young performers.

I voted for three of the contestants.

They are down to only nine.

Here are some of the contestant’s names and the songs you will maybe wish to

check out how their renditions were. I enjoyed several ‘new takes’ on the songs

from the 80’s.

Joey Cook- She is quirky and sometimes a little off-key but her energy and

fun attitude made her rendition of, “Girls Just Want to Have Fun,” the perfect

song for her to sing. She did not sing this better than Cyndi Lauper did or

continues to to so. I just cannot see her going mainstream.

Jax- I liked her version and appearance in her style of dress fitting the period.

She sang her own version of Bon Jovi’s song, “You Give Love a Bad Name.”

I realize it may not sound like you expect it to, but there is an element where

this one really soared. She is looking like Cyndi Lauper in her style.

Nick- He is attractive, Italian looking in appearance and he sings well. He has

a great attitude. I had never really found him to be ‘deep’ but his appearance

this week, singing his song made him seem humble and the stars see this side

of him, the judges really like him. He chose the serious self-reflection song of

Michael Jackson, “The Man in the Mirror.” Nick and his group, Beach Avenue,

got cut on “America’s Got Talented,” but he is doing well on this show.

Quentin- I felt he captured the essence of Phil Collins’ song, “In the Air Tonight.”

I haven’t really become attached to Quentin, yet.

Tyanna- She has an effortless way of singing, which is one of the amazing parts

of watching this 16 year old ‘powerhouse.’ She chose a challenging song from

an iconic singer and did well, gracefully singing, “I Wanna Dance With Somebody.”

She is more of a stand and sing performer, but Harry gave her high praises, by

saying he could hear this song on the radio and feel she ‘made it current.’

-Clark Beckham, who I predicted early on, may win 2015’s, “American Idol,”

sang an original version of, “Every Breath You Take.” This is the song which gave

Jennifer Lopez her famous ‘goosies’ or ‘goosebumps.’ This version of the song,

Harry mentioned he took it away from the almost-stalker status of this song,

leading it into a more pensive and thoughtful one. It is more like I picture the

song to be supposed to represent. One of adoration for someone, with a sense

of wishing to protect and watch over them. Clark did very well in this. Although,

I did feel he should have listened to Boy George who suggested he drop his

song a key. He made a joke saying, “We will see if he goes for an ‘F’ or a ‘G.'”

I am not sure how many people noticed my comment but I have on a few people’s

blogs, mentioned how much I enjoy Clark Beckham.

On my own post, I mentioned in a “news snippet,” that Clark’s version of “Georgia

on My Mind” made me believe in him as a ‘winner.’ His rendition of, “When a Man

Loves a Woman,” made tears come down my face. He has also sung his heart

out in, “House of Blues” and impressed past American Idol winner, Taylor Hicks

in Clark’s performance of “Takin’ It to the Streets” in another week on the show.

I felt it was quite a great response from Taylor Hicks, since he himself nailed the

Doobie Brothers’ song himself during his year of victory!

Rayvon- He did a fantastic job on the song, “Everybody Wants to Rule the World.”

This Tears for Fears song is harder than one would think, listening to it, to show

emotional connection on. I felt it was a ‘tough sell,’ while Boy George said it was

hard to ‘read’ Rayvon.

-Qaasim Middleton- Since he got saved last week, he really wished to give a

great performance to show he deserved the ‘save’ by the judges. He chose

the song, “Addicted to Love.” This Robert Palmer song is one where it also is

hard to show an emotional connection. I felt he did an outstanding job and I

like his big smiles, he is one who I hope will be able to grow and develop into

a popular finalist.

I recommend if you liked “American Idol” in the past, to at least check the

season’s finale. The show will include the judge’s performing, past winners

and many major performers coming together to make a great show.

I enjoyed the commercial for “Home,” and my oldest daughter, sons Skyler

and Micah, included me in her birthday celebration yesterday.

We saw this clever and  funny children’s animated movie together at our

local theater, the Strand. We headed home where I brought the delicious

famous Bun’s Restaurant Fudge Cake (along with I could not resist buying

some of their frosted egg cookies) and celebrated her #35 together, as well

as with her boyfriend, Mike.

Do you watch any of the performances of “American Idol?” Have you liked it

in the past, but given up more recently?

Do you watch, “Singing Bee” or “America’s Got Talent?” Do you have a show

in your own country where people try out while singing or entertaining?

I used to watch, “Dancing with the Stars,” but do peek in a few times during

commercials of another show. Do you like this one?

Loss of a Child: In Terms of Easter

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Rick Warren is a Christian motivational speaker, pastor and author. I was reading

about his family’s loss of his son, Matthew. It stopped me ‘cold in my tracks.’

I froze.

I have a dear younger brother with a middle name of Matthew. I chose this to be

the middle name of my son, who has a double Bible name of, “James Matthew.”

When Rick mentioned that his 27 year old son, Matthew committed suicide, my

heart was filled with sorrow and emotions.

In a selfish and self-centered way, I tried to fathom how I would feel if I should

ever have to face losing one of my children, grandchildren or dear friends.

I have lost a child, during the nine years I was a teacher in my classroom;

four times.

Three students died of health issues; one of an accident due to neglect.

I have lost a young person, one who was part of my household;

more than once.

These young people chose to end their lives.

One young man, Benjamin, I wrote a ‘ten years later’ tribute to his life in 2014.

I added names when Robin Williams committed suicide to a growing list of

ones that my children and siblings have lost due to this sad occurrence.

Where they felt compelled to leave this Earth, by their own hands.

So, if someone will take comfort from Rick Warren’s words about his loss of

his son to suicide, I felt compelled to write this quote by him on the subject

matter of his losing his son, Matthew around Easter in April, 2013. It is in

response to the often asked question of Rick Warren, by his friends and

parishioners, “How are you able to keep going?”

Rick Warren’s frequent answer goes like this:

“The death, burial and resurrection of Jesus happened over three days.

Friday was the day of suffering and pain and agony. Saturday was the day

of doubt and confusion and misery.  But Easter, that Sunday, was the day

of hope and joy and victory.

You will face these three days over and over and over in your lifetime. And

when you do, you’ll find yourself asking, as I did, three fundamental questions.

Number one, what do I do in my days of pain?

Number two, how do I get through my days of doubt and confusion?

Number three, how do I get to the days of joy and victory?

The answer is Easter.”

Written by Rick Warren, who preached this as part of his sermon,

April, 2014.

This subject is one you may not wish to share about, but should you feel

inclined we would be here to listen and supportive to you.

Have you ever known someone young who died?

Is is harder to talk about their loss if it was suicide, in comparison to as a

result of an accident?

“Everything’s Going to Be Alright”

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There isn’t any grand scales where some giant or being piles out even amounts

of challenges for each of us. No “one” is weighing or ‘divvying up’ orderly levels

of pains or gains. We either choose to sludge on through the muck or we go hide

in a cave or we give up.

We all have something, a burden, hurt or major catastrophe in our past, present

or future, to overcome.

It is in the metaphor of mountains we must climb to ‘beat our odds’ that can take

us to the top, the precipice, to enjoy the view from there that keeps me going.

Everyone in the world has heard of the pilot who may or may not have been

troubled or overwhelmed by his own personal hurdles. They are speculating

he had been suffering from depression. It is hard to tell, looking at his photo

while sitting on the edge of the bridge in San Francisco, where he had come

to America to take flight lessons.

In the Alps, Maria and the Trapp Family Singers, scrambled and climbed to

escape Nazis, this same place where the airplane crashed.

Have you ever read, “The Story of the Trapp Family Singers,” by Maria

Augusta Trapp?

I read the book, recommended to me by my German born Grandma who was

once Paula Haller, married to my Grandfather, who was Walter Mattson. She

had her own ‘escape’ story from Germany. Throughout her life, insisted we

think of her as “more Austrian than German.” She felt shame for what Adolf

Hitler and his regime had carried out against Jewish people, as well as the

Jewish sympathizers.

Many times, throughout my life, in fifth and seventh grade, later in college, I

read Maria’s story of her stepchildren and her husband overcoming extreme

temperatures and great fears of the Nazi army coming after them, to go to

America. Where her family grew, prospered and sang of their travels and life

across the country and overseas.

Anne Frank’s story in her diary, one we may have been ‘assigned’ as an

English assignment touches my heart, even now. Each person who has had

a special book or story told them, where someone like the man. Louis, in the

book, ‘Unbroken,” may use their stories to help fortify themselves for ongoing,

everyday battles in their own lives.

When I hear songs about the mountains, they are not all about pain and

anguish, some are about love and others about journeys.

But, in this 50th Anniversary year since the musical, “Sound of Music,” came

out, I hear a resounding faith and joy in the first words of,

“The hills are alive. . . with the sound of music!”

I hear it even more in the religious song, “Climb Every Mountain.”

Do you hear the mountain messages?

Do you know deep within your heart that you, too, can ‘escape’ your pains?

Do you believe in the magical and healing power within yourself to overcome

hatred and prejudice?

The list of daily problems the world’s masses of humanity face could ‘take us

down’ into the depths of hell.

We must try for our families, for our neighbors and friends and most of all,

for ourselves to ‘carry on,’ move forward wayward sons and daughters.

I have a list of songs, mostly mountain songs, but of course, Bob Marley’s

song, “Everything’s Going to Be Alright” is right up there in my “hall of fame,”

full of motivation and strength, along with fun and playfulness. Since we dare

not succumb, not get dragged down. . .

One way or another, we can make it to that mountain top.

~ “Climb Every Mountain,” from “Sound of Music.” I like Shirley Bassey’s single

of this, along with the actress, Peggy Wood’s singing it.

~ “Sound of Music,” title song from, “Sound of Music.” I like Julie Andrews, Lady

Gaga and Carrie Underwood singing this song. All different versions of traveling

musicians in the stage musicals poured their hearts and voices into this one,

over all the years.

~ “Ain’t No Mountain High Enough,” sung by Marvin Gaye.

~ “Mountain and the Sea,” love that Ingrid Michaelson, every song is joyous!

~ “Rocky Mountain High,” sung by John Denver.

~”Sound Mountain,” recently heard this on my radio, sung by the band, “Of

Monsters and Men.” This is an indie folk band, formed in Iceland in 2010.

(Another song, “Little Talks,” is interesting, too.)

~ “It’s the Climb,” sung by Miley Cyrus.

~ “Ooh, Child,” originally sung in 1970, by the family soul group, Five Stairsteps,

now is being played on an insurance commercial, sung by the lovely Jennifer

Hudson, an “American Idol” alum.

~ Louis Armstrong’s song, “La Vie En Rose,” as a lesser known beautiful song

but of course, “A Wonderful World,” is such a fantastic song. (it is particularly

poignant in the Robin Williams’ film, “Good Morning, Vietnam,” while bombs are

going off.)

I would be misguided if I did not include the song, “Battle Hymn of the Republic,”

and the mighty fine speech, Martin Luther King, Jr. gave titled,

“I’ve Been to the Mountaintop:”

“Like anybody, I would like to live a long life, longevity has its place.

But I’m not concerned about that now.

I just want to do God’s Will. And He’s allowed me to go up to the mountain.

And I have looked over.

And I have seen the Promised Land.

I may not get there with you. But I want you to know tonight, that we as a

people, we’ll get to the Promised Land.

I’m not fearing any man!

Mine eyes have seen the glory of the coming of the Lord.”

******

If you know a song which lifts you up- – please feel free to add to this short list

I gave you.

Where do you go for solace?

In Lancaster, Ohio, when I was facing divorce, with a 5 year old, 3 year old and

infant baby, we climbed up the steep path of Rising Park’s hill. My children used

to like to run around on the top, with my eyes firmly placed upon their bodies,

never leaving them from sight. We even would hold hands and look over the

precipice, down upon the city two of my three children were born in their

Lancaster-Fairfield County Hospital. My parents accompanied me on the last

day I lived there, first having a picnic down in the park, feeding the ducks in

the lake and then, holding my Dad holding Jamie’s hand, my Mom holding

Carrie’s hand and I having a snuggling baby, Felicia in her backpack. I felt

her chubby liittle legs swinging and gently tapping on my back. We looked

over Lancaster, happy we had been there, but also for me, my heart filled

with trepidation, we were leaving this city behind. We moved into our two

bedroom apartment before school started in 1986, Delaware, Ohio. I have a

fabulous friend who meets me halfway to Lancaster, next year it will be our

30th year, so we can talk about our families, lives, loves and “old times” two

times annually. We will need to have cake.

Where do you go for solace?

Who do you lean on, when you need someone to boost your energy for your

daily walks?

April’s Diamonds

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The gemstone for April is a diamond and the flower is the precious

sweet pea. Two songs, of all the ones which have the word, ‘diamond,’

in them come to mind.

Why not view each day in this new and ‘shiny’ month of April, as precious

as diamonds?

The first song which popped into my mind, “Lucy in the Sky with Diamonds,”

brings me smiles and reminds me of the 1970’s. It came out on their album,

“Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band,” in 1967.

The meaning behind this creatively wild song was that John Lennon’s son,

Julian, had drawn a nursery school drawing in 1967.  Julian described his

picture as,

“Lucy- – in the sky with diamonds.”

John Lennon wrote the bulk of the lyrics, with Paul McCartney joining

and collaborating in writing the music. I also like the Elton John version

of this song.

There were ‘rumors’ the initial letters of the song title, “L.S.D.” meant it was

about drugs. People surmised this was the real reason for the song. Both

of the Beatles who combined their efforts, insisted the ‘psychedelic’ style

was inspired by Lewis Carroll’s book, “Alice in Wonderland.”

Rihanna’s song about “Diamonds,” has some lovely images, too. It is a bit

repetitive but in a pleasant way. It is a song expressing love for someone.

The words, “Palms rise to the universe,” (almost like a thankful prayer)

and “As we moonlight and molly,” express romantic thoughts. The chorus

of,  “Shine bright like a diamond” pairs a newer song with the April jewel.

“At first sight, I felt the energy of sun rays,” is the way Spring will fill our

eyes with brightness and color. (Rihanna’s song lyrics.)

had drawn a nursery school drawing in 1967. He described it as,

“Lucy- – in the sky with diamonds.” John Lennon and Paul McCartney

collaborated in writing it. I also like the Elton John version of this song.

There were ‘rumors’ the L.S.D. was the real reason for this song, but

both members of the Beatles insisted that the ‘psychedelic’ style was

inspired by Lewis Carroll’s book, “Alice in Wonderland.”

April First-

April Fool’s Day.

All Fool’s Day.

“Let us be thankful for the fools.

But for them, the rest of us could not succeed.”

~Mark Twain.

“When I was about 10 years old, I gave my teacher an April Fool’s

sandwich which had a dead goldfish in it.”

~Alan Alda.

Play some harmless pranks or tell some ‘stories’ and tales which

may surprise someone into laughter. Maybe all you will really want

is to make some ‘fool’ happy. Or you could break up an angel’s food

cake into bits, adding fresh strawberries and whipped cream and

serve a ‘fool’-ish dessert.

April 2-

Pascua Florida Day.

April 3-

Good Friday.

Some religions celebrate and consider this an important holiday

to have a day off. Catholics especially in our community have a

special Good Friday Service at noon at St. Mary’s Catholic church.

4-

Full Pink Moon.

Plant lettuce, peas and spinach when the lilacs show their first

leaves. Old Farmer’s Almanac, 2015 edition suggests this may

coincide with the moon’s cycle.

Passover starts at dusk or sundown.

Here are three Passover desserts to serve.

1.) Honey Cake

2.) Chocolate Chip Mandelbread

3.) Chocolate Meringue Cookies

April 5-

Easter.

My Mom used to make two round cakes, one which she made into

the body of a bunny, the other she cut into a smaller shape to make

its head. It had white frosting, coconut to make it look ‘furry,’ while

she had attached white construction folded long ears with pink inside

for the bunny’s ears. Two purple or blue jelly beans made the eyes

and a pink jelly bean made its nose. She used black licorice to make

the whiskers, but there may be another way to do this. My Dad loved

black licorice ‘strings’ but my own children didn’t. I used red licorice

to create the whiskers.

In the 1880’s, Mrs. Thomas Sargent visited Bermuda. She brought

back “Bermuda Lily” bulbs. These pretty flowers had originally come

from Japan.

Mrs. Sargent lived in Philadelphia, PA where William Harris, a local

nursery owner forced the bulbs into blossoming and called them,

“Easter lilies.”

Our church takes the lily plants from the decorated front of the church

to past church members, shut-ins and if any leftovers, to the various

nursing homes in Delaware, Ohio. I was a recipient of one of the lily

pots, with pretty purple foil wrapped around the base, when I came

home from my Mom’s last Easter. Graves are also a good place to

plant lilies.

Easter note on a new trend:

You may have seen those large marshmallows. I wished I could buy

them and toast them over a fire. Someday, when my son has his fire

going I will run out to get them. Anyway, the large or regular sized

marshmallows can be dipped into food dyes that have been put into

little containers of water. Be ready to set them on a plate to dry. You

can become quite creative, by dipping one 1/3 into one color and

after it has dried, coloring the other end with a different color. Also,

you can tip them sideways, … look this up to see how pretty they are!

I think my grandkids may enjoy this more than coloring eggs, while

the vinegar smell may be one that some may be happy to skip and

coloring marshmallows may become a family tradition instead.

6- Fly your flag in honor and respect for those who served or died

during the Persian Gulf War. This ended on April 6, 1991.

11-

Last 1/4 Moon.

12-

Orthodox Easter.

On a much lighter note: National Grilled Cheese Day.

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Thomas Jefferson’s birthday.

His favorite vegetable to eat was English peas. His other favorite

ones were eggplant, asparagus, broccoli and artichokes. You may

be inspired to eat a vegetarian feast in T.J.’s honor today!

15-

Beauty with Benefits.

For those who like to donate to causes and also, shop on QVC,

80% of purchases of make-up, soaps and lotions will go to the

“Cancer and Careers” project.

This is U.S. day to file state and federal income taxes.

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Many different sources have already celebrated and featured

untold secrets to the filming of “Sound of Music.” This special

50th Anniversary day will have 500 theaters across the U.S.

who are showing the film. You can buy tickets online, ahead of

time. Enjoy, “the hills are alive with the sound of music.”

20-

Patriots’ Day,

Maine and Massachusetts.

21-

San Jacinto Day,

Texas.

22-

Earth Day, 45 years ago since the first Earth Day.

~Clean out closets and put gently used clothes, accessories and shoes

to donate. There is a special four step program you can follow, if you

wish to do this as a project.

1.) Pack the clothes up.

2.) Get a free shipping label or print one up.

3.) Leave the parcel for your local mail carrier.

4.) Check your personal sustainability report online and find out in which

of over 50 countries are participating in this our recycled items found a

new ‘home.’

Another way to celebrate Earth Day is to engage in “Community Recycling.”

You may find some interesting ways to unite by checking out:

http://CRHomeprogram

http://communityrecycling.biz

http://progams/cr-home

I found a small suggestion of taking your used coffee grounds and adding

them to potting soil. This enriches the soil. I already did this today, before

I gave them their Sunday watering.

Do you know any unique, helpful additions to this Earth Day celebration?

23-

St. George’s Day, traditional. (N. L.)

Administrative Professionals Day.

Since this was close to Spring, I used to bring the secretaries at my

schools, little pots of violets. I still have some yards of the lilac flowered

ribbon, which I tied around each pot. You can find these potted violets

for between $3 and $5 apiece. They make such a small but sweet gift

for people’s desks.

24-

Arbor Day.

We always see mayors and celebrities planting trees to celebrate.

Once, while in college, I helped plant seedlings on a hill to prevent

soil erosion. It was nearby a school.

What do you do for Arbor Day?

Also, Robert B. Thomas’ birthday, founder of “Old Farmer’s Almanac.”

25-

First 1/4 Moon.

28-

All those who love to buy movies to watch with your children, students

or grandchildren, “Paddington” bear comes out on Blu-Ray/DVD.

In closing, as always I enjoyed writing this collection of dates to celebrate

and remember April by. This is in no way, comprehensive, so please add

any cultural, religious, cherished dates or personal favorites to this list.

“April is a promise that

May is bound to keep.”

~Hal Borland.

Signs of Spring

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As I drove down our main street of our small town, past the Ohio

Wesleyan campus, I saw all the signs of Spring. The women’s track

team all had their black, red and white detailed tank tops and their

‘silky’ running shorts on. Then, not too long after I stopped at the

next red light, the men’s track team was literally ‘on their tail.’ They

were shirtless, in recognition of the 60 degree weather.

The wind was briskly whipping at the American flag in the front of

our City Hall building. I decided to keep on driving, taking the fast

route to the library. Usually, I ‘claim’ my parking space at my apart-

ment building, and walk the one city block to the library. As I parked

my car on the street, I looked over to the side of me. There was a

young couple with a puppy on a pink leash walking on the sidewalk.

When I got out of the car, I smiled and told them,

“What a cute puppy!” They stopped to tell me she was only 7 weeks

old and a mixed breed from the Delaware County Animal Shelter. It

tickled me that they wished to share her name, “Candy Kiss.” (Inside

my head, I thought maybe the young girl had had a ‘hand’ at choosing

the adorable golden ball of fluff’s name.) I told them it was a sweet name

for a friendly puppy. I also mentioned she seemed to have a lot of ‘spunk.’

They let me pet her, while I asked,

“What will you call her when you want her to come?”

They looked at each other, the guy said, “C.K.?”

The girl inquired of her boyfriend, “Candy?”

I nodded my head and said, “Time will tell. We tended to call our puppies

‘Baby,’ so often, we didn’t get their adult dog name used for months.”

It had the color of caramel candy mixed with the texture of a soft afghan

shawl.

While I headed across the street and into the library parking lot, I heard

a loud, but friendly shout. I turned since I assumed when it came directly

my way, it was for me…

“Hi, Lady!”

The two young men I had given a ride to their grandmother’s hair salon,

were now gliding along on their skate boards. I went back to the sidewalk

and gave them a big smile, while inquiring how they were? Both “Hudson”

and his pal were doing, “Super.” “Hudson” had gone into a different place

to look for work, he had been considering, “Son of Thurman’s” but instead

got hired on at Arby’s which opened just about a month ago.

The other, more quiet young man did not mention any source of employment

nor did I ask.

I told them I needed to get in and blog, since my son will be coming over

this evening to haul my 8 year old love seat out of my living room. My son

says, sight unseen, they may use it as a place to sit on the back patio or

in the garage.It has been awhile since my son has visited me, since they

are the ones who often offer me dinner or I go to pick up their children

and take them away, so the two of them get some much needed ‘alone’

time.

The leather parts are sill so beautiful but the areas of the chair which have

a vinyl ‘substitute’ are worn out. Now that I don’t have any more toddlers to

play “slide” up and down on the furniture, I had gone with my oldest daughter

to check out prices on a new piece of furniture. I am going to not only have a

sofa (or do you call yours a ‘couch?’); I have ordered one with a ‘chaise.’

My Mom hates that television commercial where a woman says ‘chaise’

repeatedly in an elegant, but kind of haughty way. I am not even sure of

what product they are selling on this commercial?

I saw crocuses in the garden by the church and spring beauties in the wild

grass in the woods. I had seen a week ago, before the last three inches of

snow came the other night, pussy willow bush had the soft pussy buds on it.

The ducks have been quacking at an ungodly hour, while my grandson had

tried to get me up and out to feed them in the dark, I had finally told him,

“The ducks like the dark to be romantic in. We need to wait until the sun comes

up.”

Micah had not blinked or been phased by this quaint explanation. Nope, he just

came back with a shocking retort:

“Nana! Don’t you mean to say it is ‘mating season?'”

Yep, that is matter of fact, true. Thanks to a six year old, ‘know it all.’ Smiles!

The newspaper described a beautiful and intricate bird courting process. The

birding article was about what the woodcock does to ‘woo’ his lady. He soars up

high, between 100 to 300 feet into the air.

Can you imagine this?

Then, he comes straight down in a wonderful helicopter landing appearance.

I kid you not. The forest rangers in nearby metro-parks are gathering children

at a certain time of day, to see this elaborate mating dance of the woodcocks.

The park rangers and naturalists have captured this in videos, as well as still

life photographs. The males are not hard to find, since you look above your

head, into the branches of the trees, usually in a small meadow or opening in

the woods.

You may wish to check if you have any close to where you live.

The bird is brown and stocky. I described him as “chubby” to my coworkers.

They are ‘cousins’ to those sandpipers you see along coast lines, but they have

significant differences.\

He has a long slender bill and has a sweet look about him.

Or is it just a ‘glint’ in his eye?

This may be because woodcocks’ eyes are located on the side of their faces.

Just to help you locate where the nearest woodcocks may be found here is a

list of known birds and their countries:

1. Eurasian woodcocks.

2. Amami woodcocks- Japan.

3. Javan woodcocks- Sumatra and Java.

4. New Guinea woodcocks.

5. Bukidnon woodcocks- the Philippines.

6. Sulawesi woodcocks- Indonesia.

7. Moluccan woodcocks- Indonesia.

8. American woodcocks.

The fascinating detail I learned, in my quick search for facts on woodcocks, is they

may have existed over 5 million years ago, since their relatives’ fossils have been

found.

What are some of the details you have noticed in any changes in weather or

season? I realize we are not all in Spring season nor warming temperatures.

Let us know what is going on in your nature’s scenery close to you, please.

Dessert Destination Spot

Image

Mozart’s Restaurant, Bakery and Piano Cafe

I knew about this place for years,

Have been there many times.

Was entranced

and reminded

by a couple

who visited,

together:

Mother

and

Child.

Have you ever loved to taste pastries?

Do you like to nibble on cookies or cake?

While you are doing so,

Would you enjoy listening to a piano?

If you are ever in Columbus,

traveling South on High Street

away from the town

of Westerville,

into Clintonville,

Beechwold Area,

Stop at 4784 N. High St.

Columbus, Ohio  43214.

This is your delectable

Destination.

You may enjoy having breakfast there.

It would be fun for lunch or brunch.

Dinners are lively and delicious here.

Friends who gather will

“Save room”

for dessert.

Of course!

Look around at the woodwork and the decor.

Mozart’s has plenty of charm and hospitality.

On one afternoon, with mother and child,

The pianist, named Mark Werling, played

Songs from the Disney collection.

Familiar strands of “Frozen,”

“Beauty and the Beast,”

and sweet Calypso songs,

“The Little Mermaid”

entertained the two guests.

Cakes

Pastries

Confections

Belgian Waffles

Chocolate delights

Caramel pralines

Layered tortes

Afternoon Tea

Might just

Make you

Feel like

You are

“Royal.”

**************

Whimsically written by Robin O. Cochran

March 24, 2015

Doesn’t this make you wish

to get a “spot of tea”

with a spoonful

of sugar?

Do you

take milk,

cream or lemon?

Inspired by “Columbus Parents,”

Article written by Marcia Frederick.

Love is a Poem

Image

For my friend, Brenda who wrote of love and threw out the ‘Gauntlet of Love.’

http://friendlyfairytales.com

She suggested we all write a ten sentence/stanza poem about Love.

What better subject than Love to donate thought and space to?

My Love

My loving family helps ground me and helps me soar,

While showing their Love for me.

My lovely daughters prepare me food,

Giving of their time and love.

My loving son and his sweet wife,

Welcome me into their home filled with Love.

I find Love in warm embraces,

Given freely and lovingly by little ones.

Love abounds in moments unexpected.

Love overcomes all expected limits.

~* * *~Robin O. Cochran~* * *~

~~~~~~March 23, 2015~~~~~~

Will you try this Love Challenge given by Brenda?

Please see her beautiful poem filled with Love.

It is really one that surpasses all.