Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Friday, November 21, 2014

Sunshine on a Gloomy Day

Today in Music History: November 21

A day filled with music is a day filled with sunshine. Even on gloomy winter days music can alter the scene altogether. In other words, music can make you happy when skies are grey! Grab a mug of hot cocoa, put a smile on your face as you step back in time with musical memories over six decades - from 1954 to 2004.

A toast to good memories & happy listening...

1954 American singer and actress Rosemary Clooney was at No.1 on the UK singles chart with 'This Ole House'. This song was also a No.1 for Shakin' Stevens in 1981. Her nephew, George Clooney was a pallbearer at her funeral in 2002.
1960 Maurice Williams and The Zodiacs went to No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Stay', the shortest ever US No.1 single at one minute 37 seconds. A No.14 hit in the UK in 1961. 
1970 The Partridge Family started a three week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'I Think I Love You'. The song was featured in the first episode of the Partridge Family TV series, made by the same company that made The Monkees.
1979 US country-rock act Dr Hook were at No.1 on the UK singles chart with 'When You're In Love With A Beautiful Woman', their only UK No.1.  
1981 Olivia Newton John started a ten week run at No.1 in the US singles chart with 'Physical', the singers fourth US No.1 went on to sell over 2 million copies, a became a No.7 hit in the UK. 
1981 Queen and David Bowie were at No.1 in the UK with 'Under Pressure'. They recorded the song together when both acts were working in a German recording studio. It was David Bowie's first released collaboration with another recording artist.
1983 Michael Jackson's 14-minute video for 'Thriller', was premiered in Los Angeles. Directed by John Landis and co-starring former Playboy centerfold Ola Ray. The video (like the song) contains a spoken word performance by horror film veteran Vincent Price. The video was filmed at the Palace Theatre in downtown Los Angeles, the zombie dance sequence at the junction of Union Pacific Avenue and South Calzona Street in East Los Angeles and the final house scene in the Angeleno Heights neighborhood at 1345 Carroll Avenue.
1987 Billy Idol knocked Tiffany from the No.1 single position on the US singles chart with his version of Tommy James ' Mony Mony'. Tiffany had been at No.1 with another Tommy James song ' I Think We're Alone Now'.
1992 Charles and Eddie were at No.1 in the UK singles chart with 'Would I Lie To You' the debut single by the pop-soul duo and their only chart topper.
1999 The Wamdue Project went to No.1 on the UK singles chart with 'King Of My Castle'. First released in 1998 when it made No.121 on the chart selling just 350 copies in the first week of release.
2004 Eminem was at No.1 on the US album chart with Encore, his third US No.1 album. Girls Aloud started a two week run at No.1 on the UK singles chart with their version of the Pretenders 'I'll Stand By You'. This was 2004's single for the Children In Need appeal with its proceeds going towards the charity. 

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...

Get up & get outside! Ready for a ride?

Within the 21st century has come more time spent indoors, thus, less time outdoors. Jobs demand longer hours with little time left for anything other than responsibilities once home. Then, unfortunately, what time is left may be spent in front of the television because by that time all energies have been expended. Therefore, a continuation of being indoors! How about a change in scenery?

November 22 is...

National Go For a Ride Day

How could you 'ride' this road? Automobile, bus, bicycle, motorcycle, scooter, skate board, truck, RV, or you could possibly simply walk it!
The idea is just to get outside...away from the confinement of walls. Get away from it all. Into the fresh air. Under the open skies. Away from the daily stress. Go For A Ride Day encourages you to get out into the world – hop on your bike, into your car, or simply get your walking boots out of storage and go on a hike. Don’t worry too much about where you’re going, just enjoy the ride. The only thing in front of you should be the open road, an open trail, open skies or open water. Yep, an airplane or boat ride would also suffice OR somewhere there is already plenty of snow...

Whereas somewhere else there is balmy weather...

OR you could ride off into the sunset in style...

However you decide to celebrate Go for a Ride Day, make sure it is a celebration of freedom and open spaces!

Next on the Calendar...Stay tuned!

Black Friday Total Insanity! Will you be there?

This time next week the atmosphere will be sheer madness! Not only will we be celebrating another TGIF but a wild and frantic TGIF filled with shopping craziness.

Sale! Sale! Sale! Everywhere...Sale! Sale! Sale! Save! Save! Save! In the news, on TV, on the Internet, on the radio, no matter where you turn somebody somewhere has posted a sign...Sale! Sale! Sale! Come on in! Come on down! HOT deals today! Save 10%...20%...30%... MORE!

BUT, what makes this 'salebration' any different from any other sale? Are the deals any better? The savings any greater? The items offered for sale on sale of any higher quality? Is anything for sale NOT on sale?

What's with this insanity that has everyone astir? A sale is a sale on any day when its ad says "Save 10%...20%...30%...MORE!" Items can be found at a discount! On sale! Buy one, get one! More! More! More! Better still, people don't have to wake up at the crack of dawn or camp out 'til doors open. They'll take the ad, maybe a coupon or two, and gingerly search the sale racks for an item or two. NOT on Black Friday! NO, sir! Got to get there first or 'what I want, when I want, where I want, how I want' won't be there! Yea, like that is going to happen...I will bet you there are upteen more of that same item in the stockroom just waiting to be pulled out at the right time! What's even worse is the thought of how much items have been marked up in order for them to be marked down for that so-called 10%...20%...30%...MORE savings.

Embrace the Past...

The first wave of shoppers depicted sheer madness... madness of the worse order, I mean MADness! Running, bumping into one another, even literally knocking down the door! OOPS! An old gentleman fell. Someone help him up! Nah! Can't take the time or MY item will be snatched up by the lady at my right. MINE! I got here at 3:00 AM, 20 minutes before her. 

Notice that was just the first wave! There was ultimately a lull. Others were waiting at home enjoying morning coffee and homemade muffins 'til their time was right. This group appeared on the scene ready to scavenge what was left hoping some 'meat' still clung among the scraps left on the racks.

Looking at the videos makes me want to stay home! Plenty of time to shop online!

Empower the Present...

Black Friday is not just for Friday anymore. While many prepared for time with family and friends to feast on turkey and dressing savoring thoughts of saving enough room for succulent pumpkin pie, others left home before sunrise to stand in the cold, waiting in line - long-long-long lines - for doors to open announcing the beginning of Thanksgiving Day sales. Then, there are some who enjoyed the holiday feast only to end the day shopping for pre-Black Friday bargains after all the bone picking was done. Makes one wonder what was on their minds - giving thanks for all they had or giving thanks for all they hoped to have after taking advantage of the sales.

Is something being lost here? When having more is more important than more time with family then something is wrong, very wrong. This brings us back to earlier questions to still ponder: What makes this 'salebration' any different from any other sale? Are the deals any better? The savings any greater? The items offered for sale on sale of any higher quality? Is anything NOT on sale for sale?

Enrich the Future...

With the age of advancing technology, one does not have to leave home to shop. Nor does one have to leave home to take advantage of special sales. There is Walmart & Walmart Online, K-Mart & K-Mart Online, Best Buy & Best Buy Online, etc. Pretty much if it is to be bought, it can be bought at an online store which allows one to stay in the comfort of home leaving the cold and crowds to eventually fade as ghosts of times past.

Of course, retailers would much prefer customers to shop in store hoping the more they see the more they will buy. One is more likely to pass up an item online vs. seeing it in real life, being able to feel it! However, there are things to be bought and sold both ways. Just remember, they are things. Stay home, spend time with family!

Bottom Line... 

There is no difference in this 'salebration' than any other sale. The deals aren't any better. The savings any greater. The items offered for sale on sale aren't of any higher quality. There are items NOT on sale for sale but bargains are still always available. 

What is your madness...in store or online?

Are you one who prefers to experience the insanity, the madness of Black Friday sales? If so, good luck and watch out for the other guy! There is a chance someone might get hurt when Black Friday madness takes a tragic turn.

North Carolina: Beauty Amplified

This Day in History: November 21, 1789

North Carolina, Tar Heel State, Old North State, Land of the Sky

North Carolina State Motto: “To Be Rather Than to Seem” (Esse Quam Videri )

"Where soars Mount Mitchell's summit great, In the "Land of the Sky," in the Old North State!"

What does North Carolina mean?
Carolina is taken from the Latin word for Charles (Carolus), honoring King Charles I of England (who made the original land grant in 1629). North Carolina was formed in 1729 when the Carolina colony was divided in two.
In early days, tar was one of North Carolina's major products, thus, the adaptation of its nickname The Tar Heel State. There are two contradictory stories about the origin of this nickname and reference to 'tar heel'. Both stories concern Civil War battles in which North Carolina troops were involved. Old North State simply comes from the division of land in 1729 that divided the Carolina province into what is known today as North and South Carolina. Land of the Sky was derived from the book, The Land of the Sky (1876), by Frances Fisher Tieran (pen name Christian Reid). This nickname references the Blue Ridge and the Great Smoky Mountains of western North Carolina.

One of the thirteen original colonies, North Carolina has a long an interesting history. Following the Revolutionary War, the state developed an extensive slave plantation system and became a major exporter of cotton and tobacco, although the slave population remained relatively small compared to that of other southern states. On November 21, 1789, North Carolina became the 12th state to join the union. In 1861, North Carolina became one of 11 states to secede from the United States, beginning the American Civil War. In 1903, the state became the site of the first manned self-propelled airplane flight when the Wright brothers took off from a cliff near Kitty Hawk. North Carolina is the largest producer of sweet potatoes in the nation. In 2011, farmers within the state harvested 64,000 acres—yielding 1.28 billion pounds of the vitamin A-rich tubers. The capital of North Carolina is Raleigh
[The thirteen colonies were: Delaware, Pennsylvania, New Jersey, Georgia, Connecticut, Massachusetts Bay, Maryland, South Carolina, New Hampshire, Virginia, New York, North Carolina, and  Rhode Island and Providence Plantations] 

 North Carolina is a state in the Southeastern United States.

The voice of the Northern Cardinal is a rich what-cheer, cheer, cheer; purty-purty-purty-purty or sweet-sweet-sweet-sweet. Also a metallic chip.
 Horses are official state symbols in 14 states.

 North Carolina State Red & Blue Berries: Strawberry & Blueberry

 For all State Symbols of North Carolina click HERE!

 North Carolina State Song: The Old North State


  Beauty Amplified


The Appalachians
Ancient mountain culture of merit
Smoky Mountain wilderness
Wondrous diversity of spirit


Blue Ridge Mountains
Beauty of many layers
 Ridge upon ridge of forest
 Tendering morning whispers


 Panoramic views
From sunrise to sunset
Barrier to east-west travel
Splendor to never forget


Autumn's signature
Far beyond the towering trees
A spectrum of vibrant color
Vast as the state's honeybees


Blue hues of winter
 Tales of Cold Mountain unfurled
Snow and ice crystals
Atop a different world


Springtime sunlight
 Accentuating morning haze
Life in the foothills
Reflective of bygone days


Land of waterfalls
Summer's cooling slide
That's North Carolina
Beauty amplified

©2014 Sharla Lee Shults

While roaring crowds in rocking amphitheaters are thrilling, nothing beats the intimacy of a small, iconic music venue. From a funky beach bar with an attic library to a glam concert hall with chic chandeliers, these local legends prove it’s not the musician that creates the unforgettable experience, but the venue itself.

  North Carolina Facts and Trivia

Next state by month:  #21 Illinois - December 3, 1818


Thursday, November 20, 2014

Hello, World!

The art of communication in the 21st century is phenomenal. Today it is possible to communicate with someone globally with the click of a button or mouse. Technology has advanced systems via airways that allow for both sound and video correspondence, as well as entertainment. Between 1911 and 1977, the first messages sent around the world and out of this world exemplified technology, science, and inventions progressing at an accelerated rate. It is of no surprise that on this day are two celebrations related not only to corresponding but peaceful communication.

November 21 is...

Ever had a bad day where it only took a single word, "hello", "hi", or someone asking "How are you?" to make you feel better? Such a simple gesture showing that someone cares, especially when accompanied by a smile, can do so much! Now, think about the power of communication on a global aspect. 

Our world is vast is terms of cross country travel but rather small when transmitting via the airways. The gist of World Hello Day is to bring a sense of community to everyone around the world. The history of World Hello Day dates back to its creation in 1973. The 70s were plagued with conflict so a day of communicating peacefully was a welcomed change from the animosity and violence across oceans. Today, world conflicts are still centerfold. The purpose of World Hello Day is encouragement to reach out in a voice of peace settling any disputes, reaching resolution peacefully, rather than forcefully. Unfortunately, as with events of the present, there must be willingness on all parties to both talk and listen.

On this day, create the domino effect and start a chain of communication. The more you greet peacefully, the more that will be greeted peacefully as each 'hello' is passed along. This celebration is the 42nd Hello World Day. Keep the voice of peace moving along loud and strong!

While we cannot join hands literally, we can certainly join voices!

Since its inception with the progress of television has come controversy over whether it is healthy or not, good or bad. Yes, the TV has opened windows to the world allowing insight into people and places only once part of the imagination. But, has it overstepped the boundaries of integrity and morality? While this may be true that is not this day's focus and will just have to wait until another day. 

The United Nations (UN) declared each November 21 as World Television Day. Must be serious coming from the United Nations, which means the UN hasn't established this day to encourage watching more TV or our favorite programs and comedies.

World Television Day is not a celebration of the tool but brings insight into the world of television, attention to world events, threats and conflicts, why they are happening and what is being done to prevent further issues from arising. It is a celebration of the philosophy which it represents, it is the significance of television in today’s international issues. World Television Day highlights how communications can facilitate social and cultural development, and encourages cooperation and partnerships in international media.

    Television is universal.

 To keep tabs about what is happening on the day, visit the World Television Day website.