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DANCING IN THE KITCHEN

DANCING IN THE KITCHEN

In years gone by we would go out dancing. I loved dancing and considered it a much needed work out as much as a way to connect with others. When I think back, this was a fitting attitude for me to employ since I lacked any rhythmic or dancing talent. However lack of dancing ability never held me back. With arms flailing and feet gyrating, in beat or not, I threw myself into the fast moving heat of the moment. We would dance until we literally worked up a sweat, resting a moment, refreshing ourselves with cocktails and rehydrating with water and then joining back with the other frenzied dancers under the shimmering mirror ball on the dance floor of the disco. I wasn’t kidding when I said ‘in years gone by’.
disco ball
At most dances there was little to no conversation as I recall as the booming music was deafening loud. Once we outgrew the discos we would still join others and kick up our heels at a community dance or at a house party. Dancing the night away was a great way to spend time with friends and to work off those extra calories. Nowadays we don’t go out dancing much however after dinner we do crank up the music and let loose with our uninhibited and unrestrained moves. Some nights we groove to oldies, other nights we dance close and lovingly sway to old romantic favorites.

After dinner at our daughter’s home her kitchen also becomes a dance floor. She, her husband and two kids amuse us with their astonishing and exceptional smooth moves. The songs are often sung or belted out karaoke style, sometimes a budding musician pounds out a mysterious tune on the piano or guitar, mostly our daughter chooses pop tunes of her era and we all shake our booty while the kids command the dance floor and put on the real show.
076air guitar 5kids dancing
We all join in during clean up and perform the quick step as we clear the table, bebop our way to the dishwasher, hip hop as we scrape leftovers into the waste bin, or slow dance by the light of the open refrigerator.
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One festive evening not too long ago there was cause to celebrate a birthday. Following dinner, our son-in-law Rob went into the kitchen to light the abundant candles on the birthday cake. The dancing music proceeded in full force and young and old were shaking and gyrating with vigour. Some with more enthusiasm than others, some with smooth moves and others taking calculated risks that involved injuring others. (Caution, dancing is not a spectator sport and can cause injuries.) Meanwhile one song ended, another began. This new song Bohemian Rhapsody happened to be a big favorite of Rob’s. The words of this song are gruesome,‘Mama I Killed a Man’ but has become an all time favorite and is sung at most celebration dinners. Why that song? Honestly I don’t know or we just can’t remember.

However, the lit cake was left abandoned on the counter as Rob wholeheartedly grabbed center stage (a coveted floor space dividing dining room and kitchen) and danced off his entire meal plus amazed us with his innate aptitude at playing air guitar! While directly behind him scores of small fires were glowing brightly, smoke was curling upwards, candles were delicately melting and a coconut topped cake was browning. The aroma of the toasting coconut alerted us to the kitchen being ablaze mere seconds before the fire alarm drowned out the blasting music. You can see the burning cake in the background of the following picture.burning cakeG Bday Cake 2011
Much to our hilarity the cake was presented and enjoyed, melted candles, toasted coconut and all. It was a night of dancing not to be forgotten…

A few notes…
Dancing is all about letting go of your inhibitions so don’t try to look cool because dancing is all about having fun. Following are my personal three commandments of dancing:

1. Thou shall let go of restrictions and allow the music to draw you in
2. Thou shall just relax, get up off that chair, feel the music and bend your knees, one leg at a time while channelling your natural fun seeking and creative impulses
3. Thou shall not light birthday candles until the song ends…

Following is a youtube link that teaches you how to dance to Lip Gloss by Little Mama

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14 Comments

Posted by on June 15, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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FOLK ART

FOLK ART

FOLK ART

Traditionally Folk Art is the work of untrained craftsmen.  There is a strong functional and practical element to Folk Art.  Utilizing the long winter hours, farmers would build new tools and whirligigs for the farm while the women would gather together and create quilts. 

Folk Art reminds us that art has a place in the simplest of homes. Combining a love of color and an inventive spirit with a creative flair, Folk Artists are perhaps untrained and yet demonstrate imaginative, artistic talent.  066

Primitively crafted and often roughly painted, Folk Art offers a bit of charm and whimsy but is meant to be practical and utilitarian and for me using reclaimed wood for Folk Art satisfies my need to be creative.  I enjoy taking a cast off piece of wood, cutting, painting and repurposing it as something whimsical, fun and playful.  Folk Art pieces are fun to create, and of course it’s very gratifying if others enjoy them as well!

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The simplest and most common example of Folk Art is the wind-driven whirligig.  The word whirligig is derived from two Old English words whirlen (to whirl) and gigg (top) meaning to literally ‘whirl a top’.

The American version of the wind driven whirligig probably originated with the immigrant population of the United Kingdom as whirligigs are mentioned in early American colonial times. ???????????????????????????????

By the latter half of the 19th century constructing wind driven whirligigs had become a pastime and art form.  Craftsman from the southern Appalachians continued to produce whirligigs into the 20th century. During the great depression there was resurgence of whirligigs by craftsman and amateurs which was attributed to the need for ready cash.

A wind-driven whirligig transfers the energy of the wind into either a simple release of kinetic energy through rotation or a more complicated transfer of rotational energy.  The whirligig can be either a simple or a more complicated mechanism that produces repetitive motions and/or creates sounds. The wind simply pushes on the whirligig turning one part of it and setting it into motion by using inertia.

An example of a simple whirligig is the button whirligig, (also called button spinners).  Button whirligigs are simple spinning toys made with a button and a string or thread.  They work by looping the ends of the thread and twisting and pulling with both arms, causing the button to spin. They were simple toys.  In America, they were popular during pioneering days and during the Depression Era because they were inexpensive to make, yet very entertaining. Children of the great depression from the southern Appalachians and Ozarks remember a button and a string as the primary spinning toy of their youth.

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Create a button spinner yourself by following these simple directions:

 YOU WILL NEED:

Button

Thread or string

Scissors

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INSTRUCTIONS:

 1.   Cut a 24-inch length of thread or string.

2.   Thread the string through the holes in the button.

3.   Tie the ends of the string together.

4.   Insert the middle finger of each hand into the loop at each end with the button in the middle.

5.   Spin the button to twist the strings and continue twisting the string until it becomes wrapped around itself all the way to your fingers.

6.   Pull the strings taut to let them begin to untwist. Release the pressure and then pull the string taut again to keep the whirligig spinning. Apply gentle tension to the string by pulling your hands apart. The button will begin to spin.

NOTE:  Pulling and releasing the string tension keeps the button spinning. Speeding up the action causes the button to make a whirring sound.

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Enjoy some simple fun!

 
4 Comments

Posted by on May 22, 2013 in Tutorials

 

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Random Acts of Kindness

Random Act of KindnessGarden Fairy or Random Act of Kindness?

We enjoyed an amusing surprise this morning after spotting an intruder positioned in our rock garden.  Standing tall stood an iron lily that had not been present the previous day.  After accusing each other of planting this arrangement of non perishable flowers in our garden, and each in turn adamantly denying the act, we came to the consensus that a benevolent and fun loving garden fairy must have stopped by in the night.   The lily adds interest and color to a drab garden and also added some curiosity and color to what could have been a drab morning!

What acts of kindness or generosity have you committed or been accused of lately?

 
9 Comments

Posted by on March 24, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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NO BULLY ZONE

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This wood sign was inspired by Maila Moon

Two years ago, for a period of approximately 6months, my granddaughter a happy, loving, kind hearted grade two student was bullied by a classmate.  She was subjected to a number of significant and violent incidents and the bullying was finally resolved by the removal of the bully from her classroom.   But not before she was emotionally and physically scarred by the bully.

Bullies are cowards and they get their power from hurting others.

In my granddaughter’s words “It doesn’t feel good to be bullied.” With the support and encouragement of her parents she used her experience to gain additional strength, determination and empowerment. She began attending a Ju Jitsu class to work on her physical prowess and she also created a bullying video which allowed for emotional strengthening as well.

Maila Moon’s video which she created two years ago was chosen for an award and is attached below. Creating the video and receiving support from all those who love and care for her has helped Maila Moon to recover from this bullying experience and aid in healing her emotional wounds. She has experienced firsthand the harm that comes from being bullied and does not want anyone else to suffer as she did.  At the end of her video Maila Moon asks “When Will Bullying Stop?

Do your part and intervene, don’t be a passive bystander.

Together let’s stop supporting bullying behavior!

Link for video: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=s5xIbKWlYvU&feature=related

Note:  According to a study by the University of British Columbia, based on 490 students (half female, half male) Canadian Bullying Statistics show that 64 percent of kids have been bullied at school and 12 percent are bullied regularly (once or more a week).

Pushing, shoving, punching, teasing, excluding people from a group, or encouraging others to “gang-up” on selected persons, are all forms of bullying.   In the majority of cases, bullying stops within 10 seconds when peers intervene, or do not support the bullying behavior. So herein lays the solution. We must identify bullying behavior, empower our children with anti bullying techniques and encourage adults to intervene and not be passive bystanders.

We must work together to stop supporting bullying behavior!

 
3 Comments

Posted by on March 22, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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Positive and Uplifting

Positive and Uplifting

I am thrilled to share this “very positive” Buyer story

I just sold from my Etsy shop a mirror and shipped it out on Feb. 5th, to Brooklyn, NY the Buyer wanted it shipped to her friends as a gift. It weighed approx. 24 lbs. and was carefully packed in bubblewrap, foam and layers of cardboard.

I always request that the Buyer send me a quick note to say the product has arrived, however this Buyer (like most) didn’t send me a note on receipt of her purchase.

So yesterday I sent a follow up note to see that my product had arrived safely.

IT TURNS OUT THE MIRROR ARRIVED SHATTERED!

Now here’s the incredible part, the Buyer didn’t ask for a refund, send negative feedback, open an Etsy case or anything horrid that I often read about Buyers doing. Her reply to my note was upbeat, said it was unfortunate that the mirror broke but it could easily be replaced and then said how much she liked the frame and how appreciative she was that I had sent it!!!

 Aren’t some people just wonderful!

I want to reward her for being so understanding, forgiving and amazingly incredible so I’m happily mailing her a cheque (that she hasn’t asked for) to cover the mirror replacement. I think she deserves this and more.

As Sellers when we speak of who our target market is, my target market is a Buyer like this, who understands that sometimes things happen, and no one is at fault or intended for it to occur and good karma should always be rewarded, especially when no reward is being requested.

 
12 Comments

Posted by on February 17, 2013 in Open for Discussion

 

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