February 29, 2012

Rest In Peace...

Davy Jones
1945 - 2012
I admit it.  It’s a dark secret, depending on how well you know me.  I am a 1.5 generation Monkees Maniac.  I wasn’t quite young enough to hit the 2nd generation fanbase, and definitely not old enough to hit the 1st generation’s hype.  My sisters, who were 7-12 years older than me, were on the cusp of the first generation fanbase.

Today is a very, very sad day for me.  While I was at work, a co-worker rang my office and told me she'd heard that Davy Jones, one of the members of The Monkees, died today, of a heart attack at 66 years of age.

For those of you who don’t know who Davy Jones is or who The Monkees are... or why I like them... a little history:

The Monkees were a “made for TV” musical “band”.  I put that in quotes because in the beginning, not all of them were adept at a musical instrument.  The producers of the show advertised for fun-loving boys of a certain age.  It is rumored that Steven Stills (Crosby, Stills and Nash (and Young)’s fame) audition, among other not-yet-well-known-musical-now-famous-stars.

The TV show was based around this foursome trying to live on their own (in a beach house that I dreamed of living in one day) and “make it” as a musical band. In every half-hour show, it had music, romping around, usually some sort of “bad guy vs. good guy” theme and girls.  Yes, there was always that 30-minute romance and it was typically Davy, here, who “got the girl” in the end.  Two of the group, Peter Tork and Michael Nesmith, were actually musicians.  The other two, Davy Jones and Micky Dolenz were up-and-coming actors.  Micky was a previous child actor in a television show, while Davy was a horse jockey and dabbled in musical stage productions such as Oliver!  The foursome together made the half hour of their show fun-loving, romping, slightly slapstick, free-spirited, live-life-on-your-terms pure entertainment.

Due to the success of the show with pre-teens, an album resulted.  While the four sang on the album (and messed around), the music was performed by studio performers.  Same with the 2nd album.  It wasn’t until their third album that all of the members played the instruments and sang for every song.  And from the history I know, it was a battle to be allowed to do that.  their first three albums were all released within one year's time.  When concerts were demanded by their fans, the two non-musical-instrument members learned to play so that when they were on stage they were authentic.

Many people hated The Monkees.  There were those who felt they were imitating The Beatles, and poorly so.  I believe that’s what the television producers hand in mind when they created the show… to create an Americanized version of the playfulness that The Beatles exuded.  But just because they were hired to do that job, is that a reason to hate?  Others felt that they should be hated because “they can’t play their own instruments” and therefore didn't qualify for the label "musicians" or "band".  (This well predates the Milli Vanilli lip-synching scandal of the 80's.)  Not having musical ability was true for two of them, in the beginning… but when they saw the importance and popularity of the TV show and how much of a fan base they developed, Micky learned to drum and dabbled on the synthesizer and Davy took up other percussion instruments, leaving Peter and Mike to strum the guitars and play the pianos.  People who felt The Monkees were in direct competition with The Beatles thought there was a hate affair between the two groups.  In fact, while I’m sure they weren’t best of friends, I do know of accounts of some members of The Monkees partying with some members of The Beatles and there wasn’t any animosity.  It was a different playing field.

As a group, they didn’t stick around together for very long.  The TV show cramped the style of the more musically inclined Peter and Mike.  It got under their skin that they couldn’t have more “say” in what they sang and played.  Peter, a very intelligent man, was perpetually cast as “the dummy” and that added another stressor to his involvement.  Over time, one by one the “musical” members left… first Mike and then Peter, until it was just Davy and Micky still singing long after the TV show was cancelled.

Some Random Trivia:

  • Mike Nesmith had money in his family.  His mother created what is now known as Liquid Paper, the typewriter correction fluid.  Mike inherited this money after she died.
  • Mike also became an entrepreneur after leaving The Monkees, and a producer and is the one member of the foursome who did not go on their reunion tour (or any tour thereafter).
  • Peter went on singing, forming and joining different bands, and sings to this day.
  • Micky Dolenz continued acting and directing, mostly from the UK, where he moved after The Monkees disbanded.   I actually saw him when he was playing in a touring musical Grease.
  • Davy Jones wanted to be a horse jockey, probably because of his diminutive stature.
  • The Monkees made one movie, called HEAD.  While it is a cult classic today, it was a flop at the box office.  Many very famous (now) people were involved in the making of this movie, either behind the scenes, or acting in the film itself including, but not limited to: Jack Nicholson (!), Terri Garr, Annette Funicello, Jamie Farr (Klinger from MASH) and Frank Zappa.

So, you probably now realize (as I have inundated you with Monkee talk) that while I did not grow up in “the” generation to love the Monkees… I am, and always will be a devoted Monkees Maniac.

Stop back by this Sunday for my storytelling Sunday.  But be forewarned… it has a Monkees theme…

In the meantime, Davy Jones, Rest in Peace.  What a life you lived!  You will be missed by many!

Davy Jones (2011)

February 19, 2012

January's Showers...

...bring February flowers?  Hmmmm.... that just doesn't sound right, does it?

I officially declare winter over.  Yes, we might get a dreaded winter blast in March, but I'm not that worried.  If it does hit, it'll only be temporary.  It'll last a week, maybe 10 days and that's it.  I just know Mother Nature took a vacation during winter and it's just over. 

Spring is springing.

How do I know?  Why am I so sure?

Because this is in my garden:

My hyacinths are breaking ground.  And, one of my trees has begun to bud.

I know they're confused.  But no matter... the snow, if and when it comes, won't kill 'em.  Just make 'em shiver a little.

Winter's over people.  Even if we get socked with some snow... it's temporary. 

Trust me.

February 18, 2012

Word Verification

Thank you who persisted on yesterday's post through Blogger's nasty word verification.  I have heard from others, verbally, of difficulties as well.  I decided to remove the word verification, only Blogger had it 'hidden' in their new interface design.  It took me a while, and I had to revert to the old interface, but I believe I have this configuration now removed.

Please, please, take a moment and just give me a shout on this post to let me know it's no longer there and that you are able to leave a comment, especially if you have had difficulty in the past.  And, if you wanted to leave a comment on any previous post, please, if you have time, try to go back and leave a comment to make sure it's also working on older posts.  I don't see why it wouldn't but... hey... ya just never know.

Y'all are great.  Thanks for the feedback.  Happy Saturday!

February 17, 2012

The Bedroom Project... (Part 1)

As I mentioned previously, we recently (and quite suddenly) decided to renovate our "master" bedroom.  I put "master" in quotes because the sad room is actually quite small.  All of the bedrooms are in our 1964 house.

Here's how it came about...

The Hubs and I spent a week down in Myrtle Beach. During this time, we slept in a king sized bed at the condo in which we were staying.  It was nice.  Roomy.  Yes, very roomy.  You see, back home, we have a full-size bed (also known as "the double").  It was my bed from before we got married and we just never upgraded.  Plus... I LOVE my bed (the double).  It was going to be hard for me to find another bed that was THIS perfect.  I dreaded giving up my happy little sleep nest.  But we talked about the fact that perhaps it was time we moved up to a bigger bed.  We briefly discussed a queen size, but then I decided I am a selfish sleeper and I really, really, really wanted a lot of space.  So we agreed we'd think about maybe, someday, possibly purchasing a king-size bed.  You know, sometime in the future.  Maybe when we got a bigger bedroom, because certainly a king-size bed would fill our tiny bedroom.

Yes, this is my "old" room.  And  yes, it's a total freakin' mess.
Hmmmm... do you think that's why it looks small?  The clutter?
This is standing in front of the closet, looking toward the south window.

Please, oh please, forgive me my clutter and terrible, nasty mess.  I cannot say much in my defense other than... well, a lot of this mess is left over from Christmas, believe it or not.  That, and I really just got overwhelmed with... clutter.  The table in the corner was supposed to be my sewing table.  The Hubs surprised me with it last spring, encouraging me to sew more.  I never once used it for sewing.  It just held... crap.

Seriously, do NOT tell The Hubs I posted these totally embarrassing photos!
This is standing in the doorway looking at the south wall (bookcase) and
the east wall (window).

Mortifying!  But you always want 'before' photos, right?  *shame*
And this is standing in front of the bookcase looking out the door, closet to the right.

Talk about skeletons in my closet!  Look away!
Same spot in front of the bookcase looking straight at the closet, east wall to my right.

When we got home, while sharing the adventures of our vacation with a friend, I mentioned the bed conversation.  Later that afternoon, she brought me a sales coupon for beds.  I took it home and shared it with The Hubs.  We talked about going the following Saturday to look.  That Saturday approached and I got cold feet about spending the money.  Another week passed and we decided to just go try some out. 

We came home having purchased a king size bed.

Next, I was mildly whining about I wish that we had time to renovate the bedroom before the new bed was delivered (at that time, it was a Tuesday and the bed was to be delivered the following Friday - 10 days).  Her response?  "You've got PLENTY of time."  The bug was planted.  I told The Hubs that I thought we should renovate the room.  I passed the bug on to him.  I shared the colors that I wanted to paint it.

Blue on the walls, brown on the baseboards, closet door and door frame, vanilla bean on ceiling and the inside of the window frame.

The first major step, however, was to get the ancient, dusty, musty, dirty, NASTY wallpaper off the walls. 

Nasty.  Ugh... more embarrassment!!
This is the south-east corner where the bookcase was.

Have I ever mentioned how much the woman who lived here before us loved wallpaper?  Well, let's just say it borders on fanatical.  And much of it was 3-D, as in, it had raised surfaces to it.

The scratches and gouges are from accidental scrapes with the fingernails and kitty claws.
To the left of this photo you can see how she artistically overlapped the wallpaper about
a quarter of an inch.  Every.  Single.  Panel.  In.  Every.  Single. Room.

So, we mapped out our schedules and started with removing the wallpaper. I must say, I LOVE the steam machine we bought (eons ago).  It was wonderful.

Southwest corner, standing in front of the closet to take this photo.

Above is The Hubs, ankle deep in wallpaper and glue.  I was ahead of him peeling down the wallpaper, while he came around behind me with the steamer and scraped off the glue.

We were so thankful the walls behind the wallpaper were painted or it could have been a mess.  We removed wallpaper previously in a room in the basement that she had adhered to just plain ol' drywall - no paint, no primer.  Chunks came out of that wall!

We had to stop every now and then to de-glue The Hubs' feet.  Literally had to peel this stuff off the bottom of his slippers.  It was funny, though.

Standing where the bookcase was, looking at the north wall.

Whew!  It was a good six hours of straight wallpaper removal.  We gave up on the closet door, figuring we could remove it from the track and do it outside of the room.  Later.  But even this... what we got done... was such an improvement.  It was exciting!

This is what we did on weekend #1.  The Saturday and Sunday after we caught the bug to renovate the room. 

Now there are 5 short days before the bed is to be delivered.

What did we do?  We spent the rest of the Sunday relaxing... y'know, because we had all kinds of free time to get the job done.  No worries about working during the week.  Plenty of time, right?

Stay tuned...

... more bedroom renovation coming up...

February 16, 2012

How I Miss Thee...

Oh, dear blog and bloggy friends, how I miss thee. 

2012 feels like it has barely begun and yet, it's weeks into the new year and I've barely dropped in to even say hello and ask everyone out there how YOU are doing so far this year?

I have been doing so much and for once, most of the things I do nowadays are because I *want* to, and not *have* to.  That is so very freeing.  I am finally enjoying the time I have now that I do not work a second job in the evenings and on weekends.  My evenings are still sucked up and I don't consider them "free" time, but what I do during that time is in the pursuit of better health and fitness. 

I realize I have not come back recently to share with you the ongoing trials and tribulations of my fitness foibles, but suffice it to say that the Sadist still sees me weekly.  In fact, I have been visiting her torture chamber three times a week now (up from merely two whip-me-into-shape sessions).  I am thankful that she has Boot Camp classes that are much less expensive than a private session, allowing me to increase my time with her.  In addition, I bought a Living Social deal for Zumba classes at a local dance and fitness center.  I have only used up 3 of the 10 classes I purchased, but I have made a commitment to go to Zumba once a week, on top of the three Sadist sessions.  I have missed a week or maybe two since I started that commitment, but that's because of The Great Bedroom Renovation.

In addition, thanks to Move More Eat Well 2012 with Cathy Zielske,  I have begun to focus on my fitness journey in a slightly different way.  My mind is ever-evolving and I appreciate the things Cathy shares with us in videos, online message boards and in the documents she shares with us every month.  I have not made the time to sit down and put my MMEW book together yet, but I have been doing the work... just not the printing and cutting and putting-into-page-protectors. 

After watching Dr. Oz (who, by the way, I am not fond of) interview Rosie O'Donnell (which everything she said except 2 things could have come directly from my own mouth), I am finally embracing that the way I eat is really an eating disorder (eat for all reasons EXCEPT hunger).  I have begun to wholeheartedly and honestly document the food that I eat daily using My Fitness Pal.  I have given myself a week to just eat and write, and not worry about staying below the calories allotted to me.   Well, that was an eye-opener, I must say!  So, starting tomorrow - beginning of week 2 - I am working very hard to stay within the calorie limit set for me (and actually I accomplished this today). 

[To Watch Dr. Oz Interview Rosie O'Donnell, Click Here To Start]

I will prevail!

So what about my weekends?  Why haven't I come on and written posts and visited on the weekends? 

My weekends... oh my lovely weekends.  First, can I say that not having to work my "social calendar" (snicker) around my 2nd job's working hours is absolutely wonderful!  Second, my "social calendar" is packed!  How did that happen?  No matter, I'm loving every minute of it.  Much of it revolved around actually scrapbooking and crafting, and that's AH-MAZE-ING!

Take just the month of February so far, shall we?  The first weekend was spent partially working on The Great Bedroom Renovation and the other part was relaxing and patting ourselves on the back for a job well done, which included scrapbooking with a friend (when I made my vision board).  The second weekend in February I was at a crop with friends all weekend.  It was local, so I slept in my own bed, but we were cropping until midnight on Friday, all day Saturday until midnight and much of the day Sunday.  Heaven, I tell you.  Heaven!

When all of those things are said and done, and I do the bit of blogging that I do over at Scrapbooking from the Inside Out, suddenly I'm kind-of tired!  So my own personal blogging has taken a back seat.  For now.  It won't last.  I just need to work it into my social calendar a bit more reliably. 

So hang in there with me.  I have so much to share.  Obviously y'all will want to see The Great Bedroom Renovation (which still isn't done, but finishing it is what's on the schedule for this upcoming weekend), the recipe books I made at the last crop, my upcoming crop retreat and a bazillion other things I want to share with you.  Not to mention I have had a 10 Things post  and a challenge from a commenter that I've needed to follow up on from last June! 

Oh, it's coming... it's coming!

But O!  How I miss thee...

February 9, 2012

My Vision...

"Dream lofty dreams, and as you dream, so you shall become. Your vision is the promise of what you shall one day be; your ideal is the prophecy of what you shall at last unveil."
James Lane Allen, novelist

Hello my friends out there in the cyber world of blogging.  Have you missed me?  I have completely fallen short on sharing my world with you, and I have missed being here and hearing from you.  My apologies, and some "so, so sorries" on top.  

What have I been doing?  Well, I have been overwhelmed with life.  Mostly, I have been focused on taking better care of myself.  I can't say I've been doing a spectacular job of it, but it has been a focus so far this year.  I have set up a goal for myself regarding my health and that goal encompasses a lot of things:  weight, endurance, nutrition, sleep, vitamins and mental stimulation.  I have been trying to get more physical activity in, eat better and get at least 8 hours of sleep each night.  That last one is a doozy coming from sleeping only on average 5 hours a night.  Giving up those two hours of awake time has honestly cut into my blogging time... but that's not an excuse.  I just haven't learned how to manage my time better.  So you will be seeing more of me, I promise.

In the meantime, to help me with many of my goals, I spent some time last weekend creating a vision board, and I wanted to share it with you...

I sure hope it helps keep me focused.  It was a lot of fun to make and it's amazing what 'pops' out at you from regular ol' magazines when you're skimming through the pages looking for words and pictures to represent your vision.  I may never look at a magazine the same again! 
Have you ever created a vision board, or thought of creating one?

February 6, 2012

Storytelling Sunday: Dangerous Song & Dance

In today’s edition of Storytelling Sunday, (which is, yes, posted on a Monday, but let’s just pretend I’m on time for once), I’m going to share with you the dangers of a popular dance and song.  It is sung to children, by children and for the entertainment of children.  It is played and danced to as adults become children once again (usually imbibing alcohol as they go along). 

I am here to tell you I want it stopped!  I want it stopped now!  It’s too dangerous.  It causes pain, suffering and life-long disfigurements.  What is this song/dance, you ask?

The Hokey Pokey.


The name itself just brings goose bumps to your skin. It sounds ominous and creepy.  It brings forth images of people tossing about their appendages, shaking and spinning as if possessed by a dark and wrathful spirit.  Are you familiar with the song?

Here are the lyrics, in case you need your memory jogged (or visit YouTube for plenty of terrifying videos on this dangerous pastime):

You put your left foot in…
You put your left foot out…
You put your left foot in…
And you shake it all about. 
You do the hokey pokey,
And you turn yourself around. 
That’s what it’s all about!

Then, before you can escape, it repeats itself forcing you to put your other foot in and out, shaking it and spinning, then your right and left hands, respectively.  Again in.  Then out.  Then shaking and spinning.  It’s just terrifying.

Here’s the worst part of the song.  The “turn yourself around”.  Therein lies the biggest danger.

Picture this… a young girl, innocently joining in on what she believes to be a fun and free-spirited game of Hokey Pokey with her sisters.  Little did she know that she was about to embark upon one of the most traumatic events in her young life. 

Cue the music. 

The game begins. 

Her sisters, unknowing of the dangers, guide her along, urging her to put her foot in, out, in and shake it.  Then spin… “turn yourself around”.  Then that awful repeat.  Again, faster.  The little girl giggles and tries to keep up, spinning during the “turn yourself around” phase just a little too fast…

… a little off balance…



A brief moment of silence as panic fills the room…

The little girl doesn’t remember this day.  The events are wiped from her memory due to the trauma that occurred.  The song, however, is forever embedded in her brain, right beneath a one-inch scar across the left side of her forehead, which she carries with her to this day.  A scar that her mother would occasionally remark upon, “you had X number of stitches, but the doctor promised me it wouldn’t scar!  And there it is…”

When trying to remember what happened, her mother told her this piece of the story…

“… and then one of your sisters ran back to me yelling, ‘Mom!  Mom!  Kai fell through the fish tank and there’s blood all over the living room carpet!’…”

I once asked her what my other sisters were doing while I was laying there bleeding (and I assume crying my head off).  She told me, 

“…they were picking up the fish and putting them in water to try and save them.”

*sigh*  Sisters!

So please, please, please…for the sake of innocent fish and fun-loving little girls everywhere.  Ban the hokey pokey from your life. 

For the love of children everywhere... ban it now!

For more fun stories, visit High in the Sky's Storytelling Sunday's list for this month.  


Related Posts with Thumbnails