Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Nostalgia In Song

Christmas 1957

 The First Of May
       by The Bee Gees

 When I was small, and Christmas trees were tall,
we used to love while others used to play.
Don't ask me why, but time has passed us by,
some one else moved in from far away.

(chorus)

Now we are tall, and Christmas trees are small,
and you don't ask the time of day.
But you and I, our love will never die,
but guess we'll cry come first of May.

The apple tree that grew for you and me,

I watched the apples falling one by one.
And I recall the moment of them all,
the day I kissed your cheek and you were gone.

(chorus...)


When I was small, and Christmas trees were tall,

do do do do do do do do do...
Don't ask me why, but time has passed us by,
some one else moved in from far away.










Jenny Jump State Park 1967


 The Ivy That Clings To The Wall


 - from the album "Sold Out - 
Rod McKuen at Carnegie Hall", 1969







Here on the far side of time
we’re near the end of the line
our days have grown withered and small
like the ivy that clings to the wall.

Off on the long road to home
we’re meant to go it alone
still, there are times we recall
the ivy that clings to the wall.

We early ran from the safety of school yards
in search of a better, more beautiful world
one day we turned in the road
to find our new worlds were all in our mind.

Some other season, perhaps
pretty girls sat on our laps
but seasons can change after all
like the ivy that clings to the wall.










Our wedding June 5, 1993 flower girl Alexandria & ring bearer Richie
Now both grown and Richie is a daddy.



Those Were The Days
 Songwriters: RILEY, CLEMON TIMOTHY JR. / SAADIQ, RAPHAEL / WHEELER, CARL / WIGGINS, DWAYNE P  Sung by Mary Hopkin


Once upon a time there was a tavern Where we used to raise a glass or two Remember how we laughed away the hours And dreamed of all the great things we would do
Those were the days my friend We thought they'd never end We'd sing and dance forever and a day We'd live the life we choose We'd fight and never lose For we were young and sure to have our way. La la la la... Those were the days, oh yes those were the days

Then the busy years went rushing by us We lost our starry notions on the way If by chance I'd see you in the tavern We'd smile at one another and we'd say

Those were the days my friend We thought they'd never end We'd sing and dance forever and a day We'd live the life we choose We'd fight and never lose For we were young and sure to have our way. La la la la... Those were the days, oh yes those were the days

Just tonight I stood before the tavern Nothing seemed the way it used to be In the glass I saw a strange reflection Was that lonely woman really me

Those were the days my friend We thought they'd never end We'd sing and dance forever and a day We'd live the life we choose We'd fight and never lose For we were young and sure to have our way. La la la la... Those were the days, oh yes those were the days

Through the door there came familiar laughter I saw your face and heard you call my name Oh my friend we're older but no wiser For in our hearts the dreams are still the same

Those were the days my friend We thought they'd never end We'd sing and dance forever and a day We'd live the life we choose We'd fight and never lose For we were young and sure to have our way. La la la la... Those were the days, oh yes those were the days







Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Lovely Lavender

Labirinto de Lavanda, em forma de mandala, na Dinamarca.


Here is a link to the information behind the above photo: Click Here Can you imagine the aroma of standing in this labyrinth?


I have always loved Lavender. It has many uses. Lavender is edible, medicinal, and has a wonderful smell.  The bees love it and Lavender Honey is fantastic! Wikipedia is loaded with information on Lavender.  About has information on growing Lavender. Here is a website with information on cooking with Lavender.


Therapeutic Tours

"Lavender, sweet lavender;
come and buy my lavender,
hide it in your trousseau, lady fair.
Let its lovely fragrance flow
Over your from head to toe,
lightening on your eyes, your cheek, your hair."
                       Cumberkand Clark Flower Song Book 1929


Saturday, May 19, 2012

Old Glory Pie




As Americans  we very often celebrate Memorial Day as a family with a picnic.  This pie would be a wonderful addition to any Memorial Day Picnic.   When we celebrate we are reminded of those who served and gave of themselves to keep this world free of tyranny.  We always remember that the price of war is not cheap. That war should always be a last resort in overcoming the tyrant who robs people of their freedom.


Great for Memorial Day or Independence Day




  • 3 can(s) (21 oz each) cherry pie filling
  • 1 can(s) (21 oz) blueberry pie filling
  • 1 large egg , slightly beaten in a cup
  • 3 tablespoon(s) sanding or coarse (crystal) sugar
  • You also need: 1 1/2- to 2-in. star-shaped cookie cutter 
  •  
  • Plain Pastry or Pie Dough
    1 1/4 cups of flour
    1/4 teaspoon of baking powder
    1/4 teaspoon of salt

    1/3 to 1/2 cup of shortening
    1/3 to 1/2 cup of ice cold water

    Sift flour, salt and baking powder together; work shortening into the flour wit a fork or rub in very lightly with tips of fingers(the less it is handled the better). Add cold water very slowly enough to hold dough together, (do not work or knead dough). Divide in halves; roll out part thin on floured board or parchment paper,  and use for bottom crust. Fit into a 9-in. pie plate, letting edges overhang. Drain 1 can cherry pie filling, combine in a bowl with remaining 2 cans cherry pie filling.





  •  Next
  • Bend a clean 6-in. square of cardboard in middle forming a wedge. Place in upper left corner of pie (like hands of a clock pointing to 9 and 12). Fill with blueberry pie filling. Spoon cherry pie filling into rest of pie. Lift out cardboard.
  • Roll other pastry round into a 10-in. circle. With a pastry wheel or sharp knife, cut round in five 1/2-in.-wide strips. With cookie cutter, cut 5 or 6 stars from rest of pastry. Brush strips and stars with beaten egg;sprinkle with sanding sugar.
  • Heat oven to 425°F. Starting in middle of pie, carefully place three longstrips, evenly spaced, across filling toward bottom edge. Cut remaining 2 strips into 4-in.-long pieces. Lay over cherry filling on upper right corner.Press ends of strips into edge of crust. Roll overhang of bottom crust up over ends of strips to form an even rim. Flute or crimp rim. Brush rim with beaten egg; sprinkle with sugar. Place stars on upper left corner of pie.
  • Bake 30 minutes. Reduce heat to 350°F; bake 25 to 30 minutes longer until pastry is golden brown and filling bubbles. Place on wire rack and cool completely.
  •  
  • My granddaughter Lilyanna's class last years singing We Are Americans: 
  • Thursday, May 17, 2012

    Remembering Donna Summer

    December 31, 1948 – May 17, 2012




    My sister Ruth Ann, daughter Jamiann, and I have had the distinct pleasure of seeing Donna perform this song with Barry Manilow at Carnegie Hall; a benefit for the GMHC(3/8/1999): 



    I was stunned to learn of her passing.  She is one of the best performers that came from the Disco era of music, beautiful and talented.  

    Though the singer is silent there still is the truth of the song. John Denver
     









    Tuesday, May 15, 2012

    Green Party On Immigration

    "Federal agents violate tribal land without any regard to the rule of law set by treaties. When on tribal lands, agents invade homes at gunpoint, and demand papers."


    What is Secure Communities? http://www.immigrationpolicy.org/just-facts/secure-communities-fact-sheet

    Secure Communities is a Department of Homeland Security (DHS) program designed to identify immigrants in U.S. jails who are deportable under immigration law. Under Secure Communities, participating jails submit arrestees’ fingerprints not only to criminal databases, but to immigration databases as well, allowing Immigration and Customs Enforcement (ICE) access to information on individuals held in jails. Unlike other ICE-local partnerships, Secure Communities gives ICE a technological, not physical, presence in prisons and jails. Unlike the 287(g) program, no local law-enforcement agents are deputized to enforce immigration laws through Secure Communities.
    As of September 27, 2011, Secure Communities was available in 1,595 jurisdictions in 44 states and territories. ICE plans to implement Secure Communities in each of the 3,100 state and local jails across the country by 2013. ICE reported that, as of September 30, 2011, over 11,000,000 fingerprint submissions have resulted in 692,788 database matches. As a result of Secure Communities, ICE had removed more than 142,000 persons.

    THE INJUSTICE: 
    The program, launched in March 2008, further involves state and local entities in the enforcement of federal immigration law. Secure Communities institutes a mechanism to run fingerprints through various databases when individuals are arrested – even for minor charges or if charges are dismissed. These checks are performed on presumptively innocent arrestees prior to conviction, raising serious doubts as to the program’s true objectives. Although ICE presents Secure Communities as an innocuous information sharing program, it seems designed to function as a dragnet to funnel even more people into the already mismanaged ICE detention and removal system. According to the Department of Homeland Security (DHS), Securities Communities has been implemented in at least 2,101 jurisdictions and at least 44 states as of January 10, 2012. However, no regulations have been promulgated and little information is available about the program in the public domain. The limited information that has been released is vague and seems to indicate that ICE is not executing its stated enforcement priorities.
      http://www.ccrjustice.org/secure-communities


    Would you like to read what the Native American has to say on Immigration? http://www.imdiversity.com/villages/native/politics_law/nam_native_immigration_1006.asp



    greenpartyus on livestream.com. Broadcast Live Free



    Monday, May 7, 2012

    For Mother's Day 2012 A Re-Post Like My Mother Does








    Like My Mother Does lyrics

    Songwriters: Nathan Chapman;Elisabeth Rose;Nicole Williams








    Irene,Diane, Ruth Ann, Mom Easter 1958





    People always say I have a laugh

    Like my mother does

    Guess that makes sense

    She taught me how to smile



    When things get rough

    I've got her spirit, she's always got my back

    When I look at her I think

    I want to be just like that



    When I love I give it all I've got

    Like my mother does

    When I'm scared, I bow my head and pray

    Like my mother does



    When I feel weak and unpretty

    I know I'm beautiful and strong

    Because I see myself

    Like my mother does



    I've never met a stranger, I can talk to anyone

    Like my mother does

    I let my temper fly, but she can walk away

    When she's had enough



    She sees everybody

    For who they really are

    I'm so thankful for her guidance

    She's helped me get this far



    When I love I give it all I've got

    Like my mother does

    When I'm scared I bow my head and pray

    Like my mother does



    When I feel weak and unpretty

    I know I'm beautiful and strong

    Because I see myself

    Like my mother does



    She's a rock, she is grace, she's an angel,

    She's my heart and soul, she does it all



    When I love, I give it all I've got

    Like my mother does

    When I'm scared, I bow my head and pray

    Like my mother does



    When I feel weak and unpretty

    I know I'm beautiful and strong

    Because I see myself

    Like my mother does



    Like my mother does

    I hear people saying

    I'm starting to look

    Like my mother does












    Wednesday, May 2, 2012

    For Dad On What Would Have Been His 90th Birthday!



    Dad, Uncle Charlie, Uncle Clarence, & Aunt Marge in his beloved Florida
    I chose this John Denver video below in remembrance of  my Dad on what would have been his 90th Birthday. Dad so loved the Space Program.
    Rocket Assembly Bldg. 2011




     My daughter Jen, He, and I walked on the landing strip for the Shuttle in November of 1979. He was so thrilled to get a chance to do this. We also toured the Rocket Assembly Bldg. We were lucky because they no longer allow tours of that building.



    Space Shuttle Simulator 2011
    John Denver wrote this song for the astronauts of the Space Shuttle Challenger that exploded a little over a minute after lift off, 5 months and 15 days after Dad's passing January 28, 1986.  When I watched it on TV like everyone else I had tears streaming down my face, but not just for them but for thoughts of how upset my dad would have been if he had seen that.  I then felt a peace knowing that perhaps he was one of the many there to greet them as they passed over.


    It is a nice thought and perhaps a wish that right now they along with John are celebrating with my dad on this special day that he shared with two of his grandsons and the doctor, Dr. Herman Smith who delivered them.  Happy Birthday in Heaven Dad! I will hold you in my heart until that day when I can hold you in my arms, like you held me many years ago.





    Passing Along A sweet lesson on patience.

    I am sharing this from a Facebook friend:

    A NYC Taxi driver wrote:

    I arrived at the address and honked the horn. After waiting a few minutes I honked again. Since this was going to be my last ride of my shift I thought about just driving away, but instead I put the car in park and walked up to the door and knocked.. 'Just a minute', answered a frail, elderly voice. I could hear something being dragged across the floor.

    After a long pause, the door opened. A small woman in her 90's stood before me. She was wearing a print dress and a pillbox hat with a veil pinned on it, like somebody out of a 1940's movie.

    By her side was a small nylon suitcase. The apartment looked as if no one had lived in it for years. All the furniture was covered with sheets.

    There were no clocks on the walls, no knickknacks or utensils on the counters. In the corner was a cardboard
    box filled with photos and glassware.

    'Would you carry my bag out to the car?' she said. I took the suitcase to the cab, then returned to assist the woman.

    She took my arm and we walked slowly toward the curb.

    She kept thanking me for my kindness. 'It's nothing', I told her.. 'I just try to treat my passengers the way I would want my mother to be treated.'

    'Oh, you're such a good boy, she said. When we got in the cab, she gave me an address and then asked, 'Could you drive
    through downtown?'

    'It's not the shortest way,' I answered quickly..

    'Oh, I don't mind,' she said. 'I'm in no hurry. I'm on my way to a hospice.

    I looked in the rear-view mirror. Her eyes were glistening. 'I don't have any family left,' she continued in a soft voice..'The doctor says I don't have very long.' I quietly reached over and shut off the meter.

    'What route would you like me to take?' I asked.

    For the next two hours, we drove through the city. She showed me the building where she had once worked as an elevator operator.

    We drove through the neighborhood where she and her husband had lived when they were newlyweds She had me pull up in front of a furniture warehouse that had once been a ballroom where she had gone dancing as a girl.

    Sometimes she'd ask me to slow in front of a particular building or corner and would sit staring into the darkness, saying nothing.

    As the first hint of sun was creasing the horizon, she suddenly said, 'I'm tired.Let's go now'.
    We drove in silence to the address she had given me. It was a low building, like a small convalescent home, with a driveway that passed under a portico.

    Two orderlies came out to the cab as soon as we pulled up. They were solicitous and intent, watching her every move.
    They must have been expecting her.

    I opened the trunk and took the small suitcase to the door. The woman was already seated in a wheelchair.

    'How much do I owe you?' She asked, reaching into her purse.

    'Nothing,' I said

    'You have to make a living,' she answered.

    'There are other passengers,' I responded.

    Almost without thinking, I bent and gave her a hug.She held onto me tightly.

    'You gave an old woman a little moment of joy,' she said. 'Thank you.'

    I squeezed her hand, and then walked into the dim morning light.. Behind me, a door shut.It was the sound of the closing of a life..

    I didn't pick up any more passengers that shift. I drove aimlessly lost in thought. For the rest of that day,I could hardly talk.What if that woman had gotten an angry driver,or one who was impatient to end his shift? What if I had refused to take the run, or had honked once, then driven away?

    On a quick review, I don't think that I have done anything more important in my life.

    We're conditioned to think that our lives revolve around great moments.

    But great moments often catch us unaware-beautifully wrapped in what others may consider a small one.