Tuesday, August 15, 2017

Positively ECLIPSED

by Mauverneen

     Next week, Monday, August 21, 2017, is the big eclipse. I have my glasses.
      I tried them out just this morning and everything was black - save for that little shining circle in the sky.
      I'm kind of excited. I remember the solar eclipse of 1963 when I viewed the eclipse with my head in a box. Really. Those of you who remember that eclipse probably did the same. I hear everyone is selling out of the glasses. You might want to get yourself a big box.
      You put a pinhole in one end of the box, off center so your head isn't in front of the hole. You can use a nail. On the opposite side of the box, line the inside with white paper or posterboard. Voila! Test it out, making sure you see a circle of light on the inside of the box in front of you.
I also found this video from NASA on how to make a viewer out of a cereal box. Same principle.
      https://www.msn.com/en-ca/news/video/nasa-video-explains-how-to-make-a-diy-solar-eclipse-viewer/vp-AApSRR4
      In either case what you are viewing is a reflection of the eclipse. Very safe. Do NOT stare at the sun! You really can go blind.
      In case you are interested in some eclipse trivia did you know in 1935 there were FIVE eclipses? A partial solar eclipse occurred on February 3 and covered much of North America.  The other, partial eclipses, occurred on January 5th, June 30th, July 30th, and an annular eclipse occurred on December 25, 1935.
      And just for fun, here is a presidential couple viewing an eclipse. Calvin Coolidge was the 30th President of the United States, serving from 1923 to 1929


Enjoy the eclipse, and remember to do so safely!


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Tuesday, August 8, 2017

Positively Be

by Mauverneen

“Consider the lilies of the field; they toil not, neither do they spin: and yet I say unto you, That even Solomon in all his glory was not arrayed like one of these.” (Matt. 6:28-30)

In other words “Don’t worry. Be happy.” (Bobby McFerrin)
      Sometimes happiness eludes us. Sometimes we forget to be positive. Sometimes we forget we are in charge of our own life. Sometimes - life is just plain hard!
      It's then, when life seems unfair, that we need to stop and take a deep breath and remember it wasn't always like this and it won't always be like this. In other words "This too shall pass" - ancient proverb.
      So, that's the best time to linger over that cup of coffee, that glass of wine, that decadent dessert you just treated yourself to. Linger and enjoy. Something.
      I guess today's pep talk is mainly for myself. But I have plans, I have things to look forward to. I can't forget that. So I take a deep breath, pour a second cup of coffee and dream for a few minutes. And besides, it is Positively Tuesday! No complaining today, no whining - woe is NOT me today!

      I will muddle through today, or this week, or this year, and keep my mind on the future, on my goals, on the prize. On the good things. And I will take some time to appreciate that this world can be a wonderful place. Have a Positively Glorious Day!


 
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However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!

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Tuesday, August 1, 2017

Positively Gardening

by Mauverneen

"Show me your garden and I shall tell you what you are"  ~ Alfred Austin 

     Perhaps Mr. Austin was talking about flowers, but right now, I have a vegetable garden to show him. After reading this quote I wandered outside and assessed my garden. Hmmm. 

Messy yet organized in its own way.  (It may look in disarray but I can tell you where everything is.)

Ambitious.  (I do tend to take on more than I really should.)

Hopeful.  ( I always expect a bumper crop. Sometimes I am rewarded. Sometimes....eh)

Needs some tending.  (TLC is never wasted here. AND, it cleans up nicely.) 
.
Prospering. (Everybody loves the tomatoes and green beans, but not so much the zucchini.) 

Nurturing. (My garden feeds me and nurtures my soul. It also nurtures bees, birds, and on occasion                       some of those pests I try to keep out.

 Ahem.  Perhaps Alfred wasn't too far off the mark.


*note:  Alfred Austin was an English poet who was appointed Poet Laureate in 1896, following the death of Tennyson.

As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!
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Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Positively Summer Morning Coffee Klatch

by Mauverneen


“Summertime is always the best of what might be.” ― Charles Bowden

Summer mornings for me are best spent outdoors, in the morning sun, with a good cup of coffee. The world is still peaceful, not yet fully awake. Maybe that's why the animals like it. I have been fortunate, these past few years, to live on the edge of a wood. So, I take my summer mornings with joy, and hope for a good day as I sip that coffee. And many mornings, I have company...

Of course, there is always Bailey, hoping for a cookie.

There are always all types of birds


The squirrels always try to crash the party - but they're always fun  to watch
And sometimes, the mother deer will bring out a baby or two

And on occasion, we get the unexpected!

Luckily this one was only after some apples!


As always, words and photos are my own, and require permission to reprint.
However, feel free to share the blog in it's entirety. In fact, I encourage it!
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Tuesday, July 4, 2017

INDEPENDENCE DAY


by Mauverneen

INDEPENDENCE
Synonyms: self-sufficiency, self-reliance, self-subsistence

Happy Independence Day!  July 4th – the day we Positively Celebrate our freedom as a nation. 
Very often, when I hear the word freedom I get this ringing in my head – “freedom…freedom…freedom…”  It’s Aretha Franklin belting out those words in her song ‘Think’!  " Freedom – freedom – freedom – yeah freedom…"    It always makes me want to dance, which I don’t think is too inappropriate for today. 

There are different forms of freedom – freedom of speech, freedom of religion, freedom from oppression, freedom from a dictator, freedom from an abusive spouse or parent.  Freedom of and freedom from.  Freedom brings responsibility; being accountable for one’s self and not infringing on other people’s rights - even when they don’t believe the same things we do.
The revered Lady with the torch
There have been wars and revolutions throughout history in the name of Freedom.  I think sometimes we forget how dearly our own country paid for our Independence.   

We have a number of symbols of our freedom here in the U.S. – the flag, the eagle, the statue of liberty, among others. Betsy Ross is credited with sewing the first American flag.  (Did you know A flag expert is called a "vexillologist?")  It was also a woman, Emma Lazarus, whose poem "The New Colossus" appears on the base of the statue of liberty.  Francis Scott Key of course wrote the lyrics to the Star SpangledBanner, something that I hope is still being taught in schools. It became our national anthem in 1931.

I think the National Mall in Washington D.C. is one of the most exciting places to see some of our monuments to freedom.  Laid out on about 1000 acres the mall really is the people’s place. The boundaries of the mall are the Capital building to the Lincoln Memorial, and the White House to the Jefferson Memorial.

Lincoln Memorial, Washington, DC

Washington Monument, Washington DC
Several years ago I was fortunate enough to spend some time walking along the reflecting pool, the section between the Lincoln Memorial and the Washington Monument – a good sized piece of real estate – and was totally impressed.  It’s a beautiful area, anchored by the two monuments just mentioned, with other memorials in between and further out.  On the other side of the Washington Monument is the two mile green mall where protesters often gather, exercising their right to freedom.  I wish every American could see our nation’s capitol at least once in their lives. Not only is it impressive, but it’s a wonderful history lesson that instills a sense of pride in being an American. 

In Philadelphia, there is the Liberty Bell and Independence Hall and in Boston there is the harbor and the Old North church where the lanterns were hung to alert the militia that the British were coming. In New York there is of course, the Statue of Liberty on Ellis Island and FreedomTower, built on the site of the World Trade Center.
In South Dakota there is Mount Rushmore with it’s carved faces of presidents George Washington, Thomas Jefferson, Abraham Lincoln and Theodore Roosevelt.  It was built as a ‘shrine to democracy' by Danish-American sculptor Gutzon Borglum and his son, Lincoln, although a state historian named Doane Robinson is credited with conceiving the idea of the sculpture.  It is far more impressive in real life than it is in pictures, with faces 6- ft tall or, to put it in perspecitve, the size of a 5 story building. 

Mount Rushmore
Civil War Re-enactment
There is Chickamagua, Fort Sumter, Antietem and Gettysburg.
There is Selma, and Montgomery, and Birmingham, Alabama.
There is Wounded Knee and Little Big Horn.
In Texas there is the Alamo and in Hawaii there is Pearl Harbor.
From sea to shining sea.
Different wars, different fights, different freedoms.

We enjoy our beautiful Monuments to Freedom as well we should and revere those graveyards that honor the fallen who have defended that freedom.  For they deserve to be honored.  And thanked. Profusely.

In the midst of our picnics of hot dogs, burgers and sodas, our dips in the pool or the lake or the boat ride on the river, in the midst of our brightly lit, loud, colorful fireworks, let’s all try to stop for a just a minute and think about what we are celebrating.  And then get back to dancing! 


Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves.  Abraham Lincoln
Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn't pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.
                                                                                                          Ronald Reagan
                                                   



As always, words and photos are my own and require permission to reprint.
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