“I can’t wait to see them,” replied a daughter. “There’s been so much hype.”
She doesn’t remember when they emerged in 2013, but will our dog Lucy? Her eyes–ummm–bugged out when she sniffed and inspected Little Miss Cicada (the one I bonded with–lol). Hubby mentioned (at dinner!) that a friend in VA shared what happened when her dog ingested a bunch of the bugs. Let’s say the digestion process did not go smoothly! Yuck! Today, I’m re-posting “Cicada City Part II,” my impressions–or should I say Lucy’s impressions?– when the cicadas were everywhere.
2013 might be the Chinese Year of the Snake, but at Bmore Energy it’s the Week of the Puppy.
Lucy “guest blogged” “Fluffy Father’s Day” and, in honor of her turning two, I’m featuring my furry sweetheart again.
In my recent post, Cicada City Part I, you met Little Miss Cicada. What I didn’t say was how Lucy reacted to her first encounter with the large buzzing bug. Before Lucy met Little Miss Cicada, several dog owners told me that their dogs were feasting on the cicadas. One told me she didn’t even need to give her dog kibble because he was eating so much.
Teenage Daughter #2 babysat for a family who warned her to keep their dog, Molly, inside because Molly was eating the cicadas then throwing them up. But when Teenage Daughter #2 opened the door to let the kids in, Molly ran out and, you guessed it, ate a cicada. Teenage Daughter #2 reported, “Molly started acting really weird. She was twitching and gagging. I think the cicada was still alive in her stomach! I was just praying she wasn’t going to throw up!”
Teenage Daughter #1, who babysat for the same family, replied, “I’m afraid of throw up! Literally, afraid. And I couldn’t even walk on their grass because of the cicadas. It was like step, cicada, step, cicada! They’re disgusting!”
Back to Lucy.Hon, the photos and 45 second video say it all!
Whenever it snows, I tell Lucy, “You should live in Alaska!” Though ice crystals form on the tips of her fur, she self-insulates. Her puffed up fur keeps her body warm and making her paws look three times their normal size. She hops in the snow, herds anyone who sleds, and “helps” us shovel.
Want to see pure joy? Click “Snow Puppy” or hit the play button below.
Bmore Energy is a place to share ideas, inspiration, creativity, and moments of beauty and levity in everyday life. Call it positive energy with time for contemplation.
Rarely do I share my political views, but in light of the palpable tension apparent in every single person I know, if you’re uncertain why our nation is on the precipice, read Isabel Wilkerson’s researched, insightful, and devastating book, an accounting of race in America, Caste, The Origins of Our Discontents.
Still don’t know why an angry, violent, weapons-laden mob stormed the Capitol on January 6, 2021? Or why a police officer was killed when he was hit in the head with a fire extinguisher? A woman trampled to death? A gallows set up to lynch the Vice President? Or why, if the color of the people’s skin in the crowd was different, the outcome of the day would have been vastly different? Consider who supports Auschwitz sweatshirts, Nazi insignia, Confederate flags, and gallows. And why. Do I need to spell it out?
On Wednesday, January 20, 2021, the world will be watching the transition of power. Even if that transition is peaceful, this country is home to over 70 million people who voted for a person and his political henchmen who promote racial, religious, and ethnic superiority, polarization, divisiveness and violence. What’s become of basic human rights, natural resources, the environment, foreign relations, trust, healthcare, education, decorum and civility, not to mention the ability to discuss and debate opposing political views? And, how will we look back at the response to a global pandemic that’s, so far, killed over 397,000 people in the U.S.? How many citizens are willing and ready to let the U.S. devolve into a racist regime? I feel ill thinking about it.
This year, MLK Day falls during an historic Inauguration Week. Martin Luther King Jr.’s speech is as powerful and important today as it was in 1963.
Peace to you, hon, wherever you’re from, whatever religion you practice, and whatever ethnicity you are, and hoping and praying the same humanity is extended to you that you extend to others.
Transcript of speech by Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. August 28, 1963. Lincoln Memorial in Washington D.C.
I am happy to join with you today in what will go down in history as the greatest demonstration for freedom in the history of our nation.
Five score years ago a great American in whose symbolic shadow we stand today signed the Emancipation Proclamation. This momentous decree came as a great beckoning light of hope to millions of Negro slaves who had been seared in the flames of withering injustice. It came as a joyous daybreak to end the long night of their captivity.
But one hundred years later the Negro is still not free. One hundred years later the life of the Negro is still sadly crippled by the manacles of segregation and the chains of discrimination.
One hundred years later the Negro lives on a lonely island of poverty in the midst of a vast ocean of material prosperity.
One hundred years later the Negro is still languishing in the comers of American society and finds himself in exile in his own land.
We all have come to this hallowed spot to remind America of the fierce urgency of now. Now is the time to rise from the dark and desolate valley of segregation to the sunlit path of racial justice. Now is the time to change racial injustice to the solid rock of brotherhood. Now is the time to make justice ring out for all of God’s children.
There will be neither rest nor tranquility in America until the Negro is granted citizenship rights.
We must forever conduct our struggle on the high plane of dignity and discipline. We must not allow our creative protest to degenerate into physical violence. Again and again we must rise to the majestic heights of meeting physical force with soul force.
And the marvelous new militarism which has engulfed the Negro community must not lead us to a distrust of all white people, for many of our white brothers have evidenced by their presence here today that they have come to realize that their destiny is part of our destiny.
So even though we face the difficulties of today and tomorrow I still have a dream. It is a dream deeply rooted in the American dream.
I have a dream that one day this nation will rise up and live out the true meaning of its creed: ‘We hold these truths to be self-evident; that all men are created equal.”
I have a dream that one day on the red hills of Georgia the sons of former slaves and the sons of former slave owners will be able to sit together at the table of brotherhood.
I have a dream that one day even the state of Mississippi, a state sweltering with the heat of injustice, sweltering with the heat of oppression, will be transformed into an oasis of freedom and justice.
I have a dream that little children will one day live in a nation where they will not be judged by the color of their skin but by the content of their character.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day down in Alabama, with its vicious racists, with its Governor having his lips dripping with the words of interposition and nullification, one day right there in Alabama little black boys and black girls will be able to join hands with little white boys and white girls as sisters and brothers.
I have a dream today.
I have a dream that one day every valley shall be exalted, every hill and mountain shall be made low, the rough places plains, and the crooked places will be made straight, and before the Lord will be revealed, and all flesh shall see it together.
This is our hope. This is the faith that I go back to the mount with. With this faith we will be able to hew out of the mountain of despair a stone of hope. With this faith we will be able to transform the genuine discords of our nation into a beautiful symphony of brotherhood. With this faith we will be able to work together, pray together; to struggle together, to go to jail together, to stand up for freedom forever, )mowing that we will be free one day.
And I say to you today my friends, let freedom ring. From the prodigious hilltops of New Hampshire, let freedom ring. From the mighty mountains of New York, let freedom ring. From the mighty Alleghenies of Pennsylvania!
Let freedom ring from the snow capped Rockies of Colorado!
Let freedom ring from the curvaceous slopes of California!
But not only there; let freedom ring from the Stone Mountain of Georgia!
Let freedom ring from Lookout Mountain in Tennessee!
Let freedom ring from every hill and molehill in Mississippi. From every mountainside, let freedom ring.
And when this happens, when we allow freedom to ring, when we let it ring from every village and hamlet, from every state and every city, we will be able to speed up that day when all of God’s children, black men and white men, Jews and Gentiles, Protestants and Catholics, will be able to join hands and sing in the words of the old Negro spiritual, “Free at last! Free at last! Thank God almighty, we’re free at last!”
“I have this theory that people make an implicit decision as to whether they’re going to stay young and curious and interesting and interested, or whether they’re just going to let themselves age.”*
Living on a hill has its advantages and disadvantages. Disadvantages? Balls roll away, mud and ice makes it especially slippery, the garden’s on a slope, and climbing back up the hill in snow is a workout. Advantage? Being “the sledding house!”
I created this video after a blizzard in 2015, and it always make me smile.
As the creative director for mxmtoon, my daughter Morgan directed the singer’s two latest music videos. “bon iver” is the first track of the “dusk” EP and follows “almost home” (yesterday’s post), the last track on the “dawn” EP. The two videos transition from dawn to dusk in lighting and atmosphere. Check out the cool animation that accentuates movement and mood.
The singer/songwriter will be revealing more details surrounding the highly-anticipated release over the upcoming weeks, but today mxmtoon has revealed a new single, “bon iver” — her first taste of new music since dawn.
The single continues to show the range of mxmtoon, and comes with an accompanying music video as well. “When we think of nightfall, we often associate it to the ‘end’ of something. The ‘bon iver’ music video is meant to counter that notion, and to spark thought over the possibilities that are ahead instead,” mxmtoon shares on the music video. “A day does not just end when the sun goes down, you continue to find wonder and joy despite the dark, and a whole other world awaits you as the moon glides overhead. New beginnings are not limited to a rising sun, your world is what you make it whenever you choose to begin.” substreammagazine.com
Click here to read more about mxmtoon, whose name is Maia.
Click here to read about the concepts behind her albums and songs.
As the creative director for mxmtoon, my daughter Morgan directed the singer’s two latest music videos. “almost home” is the last track of the “dawn” EP and “bon iver” (tomorrow’s post)is the first track on the “dusk” EP, and the two videos transition from dawn to dusk in lighting and atmosphere. Check out the cool animation that accentuates movement and mood.
Marked by clear singing and mxmtoon’s ukulele and guitar melodies, dawn offers diverse sounding songs that cover depths both pleasing and surprising. The result is a treasure that exudes positivity and satisfies the need for good news in this time. New Noise
Want to know more about mxmtoon, whose name is Maia? Click here to read about her background. Want to know more about her music? Click here to read about the concepts behind her albums and songs.
If you watch it, please let me know what you think!
In rural 1977 Georgia, a misfit girl dreams of life in outer space. When a competition offers her a chance to be recorded on NASA’s Golden Record, she recruits a makeshift troop of Birdie Scouts. Led by spunky outcast Christmas Flint (Mckenna Grace), they infiltrate the Birdie Scout youth group in order to win a talent show. The winning Birdies will earn the right to have their voices included on the Voyager Golden Record, which Christmas believes will be heard by life in outer space, a connection her deceased mother nurtured. When they form the troop, the only number left unassigned in the state is zero; while the Birdie Troop leader Krystal Massey (Allison Janney) intends to assign “Troop Zero” to them as a slight, the girls, and one boy, take it as a good sign as it’s the number representing infinity. Troop Zero requires a troop mother, and they find one in Christmas’s father’s secretary Rayleen (Viola Davis), who also has history with Mrs. Massey.
This year, though our friends’ holiday bbq was nixed, we still got together, socially distancing of course. Since our school district doesn’t let out until late June, July 4th feels like the official start of summer. But what does this summer hold? Will I return to work or not? Will Elegant Lifestyles publish a September issue? Is it safe to visit family in different states? Will one of my daughters have to quarantine when she returns home after four months away? Will my younger daughter’s college hold classes? The questions go on and on. One thing we can do is travel…virtually. This is a list of places I’d love to go one day. Where would you like to go?
David Attenborough leads you on an interactive tour underwater to explore the Great Barrier Reef. Through interactive time-lapses, videos, and weather maps, the tour shows you the Earth’s most bio-diverse ecosystem.
All the while, a tracker notes miles traveled, total sailing time, and the effects of climate change during your “exhibition,” making this a great educational tour for adults and kids alike!
China’s most famous attraction offers virtual tours of some of the most visited sections of the wall, 3,000 miles of which are walkable. With much of the country under quarantine measures, the virtual tour offers a reprieve from the crowds who normally come from all over the world to see the 2,000-year-old marvel.
Our online virtual tour enables visitors to interactively explore the “UNESCO World Heritage Site”, the Taj Mahal at Agra in India. Visitors may tour 22 different areas of the monument and gardens through 360° panoramas, maps, narrated mini-movies, music and text.
Experience virtual tours and in-depth educational videos of Kenai Fjords National Park. Journey into the beautiful landscape of Alaska to discover the wonders of the glaciers, local wildlife, geology and so much more!
In an attempt to bring those of you that want to be here a little closer to Ireland, we’ve created a guide that’s packed with virtual tours (and 360 photos) for some of Ireland’s best-known attractions.
“Immerse yourself in the amazing history, cities and landscapes of Scotland from the comfort of your own home…virtual tours of Scotland, including fascinating documentaries and Scottish museums that offer online tours. So sit back, relax, and enjoy your virtual journey through Scotland.
I’ve been meaning to post a mask pattern, but have been busy…you guessed it…sewing. I also decided to tie dye a donated sheet (shout out to Leslie!) and cut it up for masks. While searching in my attic for more fabric, I came across clothes whose styles are out-of-date, but whose fabric could be turned into something else. Hmmm….
Creating masks for essential workers, we’re constantly tweaking our patterns depending on workers needs (comfort being the most important factor). The first pattern we used as part of The Mask Maker for NJ Workers was put out by Atlantic Health System along with a helpful video. (see below) We worked on another pleated pattern, and are now creating cinched masks with straps that adjust with toggles.
Do you need masks? My daughter, aka my sewing partner, put together a flier with info for people who want to purchase them. We’ve been sewing lightweight, comfy, breathable, washable masks in both pleated and cinched models. In addition to the fabrics on the flier, we now have more choices. Please email me at email@example.com for info.
Pleated Mask Pattern from Atlantic Health System
You can make two sizes: Adult or Child
Cut fabric 9.5″ by 6.5″ for an adult or 7.5″ by 5″ for a child. Be sure any fabric design is placed horizontally.
Put right sides of fabric together
Starting at the center of the bottom edge, sew to the first corner and stop. Sew the elastic with the edge out into the corner. A few stitches forward and back will hold this.
Sew to the next corner, stop, and bring the other end of the same elastic to the corner and sew a few stitches forward and back.
Sew across that top of the mask to the next corner. Again, put an elastic with the edge out.
Sew to the next corner and sew in the other end of the same elastic.
Sew across the bottom leaving about 1.5” to 2” open. Stop, cut the thread. Turn inside out.
Pin three tucks on each side of the mask. Make sure the tucks are the same direction