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Oh, When The Cows Come Marching In July 20, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Amazing Animals, Music & Dance, Nature.
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31 comments

An impromptu Jazz concert on a Jersey hillside for a bunch of Jerseys.

No cows were harmed in the filming of this video.

Aah . . . that’s better!

This Is Brilliant! July 11, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Happiness, Humor, Music & Dance.
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32 comments

I clicked on this without expecting much in the way of entertainment value:

Surprise!

Aah . . . that’s better!

What did you think about the sound of that Carrot Clarinet?

Clap Along June 19, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Gratitude, Happiness, Music & Dance.
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41 comments

I double dog dare you to listen to this without cracking a smile:

Lion-Side-ProfileHaving faith in whatever life offers brings greater joy and engagement with less fear, hesitation, and aversion.  Accepting life’s inherent uncertainty allows [us] to experience more awe toward the mysteries of life and less concern.

~ Lama Surya Das

Aah . . . that’s better!

Related post:  Happy! (Pix / Under The Oaks)

Morocco February 20, 2014

Posted by nrhatch in Mindfulness, Music & Dance, Synchronicity & Mystery.
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34 comments

Donald-DuckaWhen the same thing keeps popping up on our radar screen, we need to tune in and LISTEN.

This week, I hear the Universe whispering . . . “Morocco.”

1. Kate shared a post about her planned impromptu trip to the country where they turned back time ~ Fantasies of Heat & Dust.

Kate also shared a craft project . . . making a travel journal for the trip.

2. Freedom Village, a local retirement community, selected Morocco as its theme for February and extended an invitation to the larger community to join residents in sampling Moroccan Cuisine.

I called too late . . . and asked to be added to the “Wait List.”

3. While watching TV, we saw mention of Morocco.  The exact context of that whisper escapes me.  Perhaps it was:

Morocco ~ it’s everywhere you want to be.

4. Yesterday, on Wordless Wednesday, Sylvia shared a photo taken on the road to Marrakesh ~ Washday Blues.

Sylvia’s photo made me run to hug my washing machine.

5. With each passing reference to Morocco, the haunting melody of Al Stewart’s The Year of the Cat begins to play revealing . . . a morning from a Bogart movie in a country where they turned back time.  

The Year Of The Cat encourages me to accept what is offered without obsessing about the future and its inherent uncertainty:

If “Morocco” is the WHAT, what’s the WHY?

Well . . . I’m not sure.

That’s OK.  I’ll accept what’s being offered here and now and allow the future to unfold in its own way and time.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Wow! What A Weekend! November 12, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Art & Photography, Food & Drink, Humor, Music & Dance.
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38 comments

We had tons of fun in the sun this weekend.  Here’s how the fun unfolded:

IMGP0887bOn Wednesday, we received a late breaking invitation to a birthday dinner for our 16-going-on-17 niece, Samantha.

Driving across state to join the revelry and merriment at Seasons 52 in Orlando, we heard Stevie sing “On The Edge of Seventeen.”

Perfect timing!

And then “a little ditty about Jack and Diane” which reminded us to “hang on to 16 as long as you can.”

Oops . . . too late!

We arrived early and surprised Sam by jumping out of the bushes in front of the restaurant, swords drawn.  Like pirates!

We didn’t fool her.  She knew it was us.

Dinner included Flatbread Pizza, Greek Salad, a Dynamic Duo of Hummus, and Sweet Indulgences for Dessert.

Our waiter snapped this photo as we struggled to maintain composure (while fighting a losing battle with a sugar high).

Sam's Birthday

Tigger managed in our absence, greeting us with a HUNGRY yowl and a hairball.  On the carpet.

On Thursday, after a grueling day of doing “nothing much” (bike ride, water aerobics, grocery shopping), we attended an Open House at the South Florida Museum to launch the new equipment in its Planetarium . . . stellar!

The capabilities are absolutely amazing!  We zoomed in to Earth and flew over Anna Maria Island and our neighborhood. We rode through the canyons on Mars. We went out past the edge of the solar system, the Milky Way, to the edge of the known Universe.  

To date, only 25 planetariums in the world have these capabilities ~ much like the Universe, that number is ever expanding.

Tigger greeted us with a contented purr and a wee accident.  On the tile.

On Friday, at the annual Arts Hop, we wandered through five of the island’s fourteen galleries listening to local musicians, sipping wine, admiring the art, and nibbling on  . . . nope, not spongecake.

We noshed on imported cheese and crackers and sampled coconut shrimp with mango salsa at Sidebar, the newest gallery.

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We filled cocktail plates with bruschetta, pizza, and fresh pineapple at The Studio at Gulf and Pine.

We tried Japanese Ice Cream “Bubbles” at the Shiny Fish Emporium ~ a first for us.  Mochi ice cream is a small dessert ball with rice cake (mochi) on the outside and an ice cream filling on the inside.  We tried the White Chocolate Raspberry first.  Followed in quick succession with a Chocolate chaser.

We ended our strolling repast with mini pumpkin spice cupcakes and cookies at ArtSpace.

Fun night.  And filling.  Filling and fun.

We went home and collapsed on the sofa to watch The Bourne Legacy and rest up for the rest of the weekend’s scheduled events.  Tigger joined us.

On Saturday, we stopped by the AMI Butterfly Garden Arts & Crafts Show on the island to hang out with Patchouli.  Just the right mix of sun and clouds to keep the temperatures temperate.

Did you catch the chorus?  “I don’t know how to stay, but I don’t know where we’re going.  Hold on ’cause anything is possible.”

Ring any bells?

After getting our fill of Julie and Bruce’s melodies, we swung by The Fresh Market for Taste of the Holidays, with samples of whipped potatoes, sweet potato souffle, corn souffle, stuffing, cranberry orange relish, green beans, cheese straws, pecan pie, and coffee a l’orange.

Also offered but not sampled by us ~ oven roasted turkey, spiral baked ham, pumpkin pie, sweet potato pie, red velvet cake.

After grabbing a few bakery items (Toscano Pano and Cheddar Rolls), we popped down to Coquina Beach for the tail end of Symphony on the Sand, arriving in time to hear the 1812 Overture.  While there, we burned off a few calories with a moonlit stroll along the Gulf, accompanied by night breezes.

After a light dinner at home, we headed inland to hear Sophie B. Hawkins  perform at the Tarpon Pointe Grill and Tiki Bar.

Sophie B. headlined the Pussycat Festival, to raise $’s for the Gulf Shore Animal League, singing songs from Tongues & Tails and Whaler . . . plus a few songs by her alter ego, Janis Joplin.

 

After enjoying her music for 20 years, it was great to kick back and watch Sophie perform live . . . from the comfort of our car.  We arrived late to the festival, expecting to park blocks away from the venue.  Instead, we pulled into a parking spot a stone’s throw from the stage with an unobstructed view.

What a treat!

On Sunday, we attended a matinee of the Island Players ~ Guilty Conscience, a crafty thriller by the creators of “Columbo” and “Murder She Wrote.”  At intermission, we enjoyed a few “Guilty Pleasures” ~ tea cakes and cookies.

On Monday, fun still not done, Mary Lou and Larry took us to lunch at The Waterfront ~ a delicious “thank you” for helping clean out Betty’s villa.

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Today we plan to rest up for next weekend.  Which starts . . . tomorrow!

What’s that?  Weekends don’t begin on Wednesday and end on Monday?  Of course they do.  They must.  How else would we pack in all this fun?

Aah . . . that’s better!

How did you “spend” the weekend?  Are you “paying for it” this week?  :mrgreen:

Stir Life With A Slow Spoon October 23, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Life Balance, Life Lessons, Mindfulness, Music & Dance.
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44 comments

When caramelizing onions, low heat with a slow spoon works best to enhance their innate sweetness.  Cranking the heat to speed up the process doesn’t work, unless you savor the flavor of burnt onions with raw centers.

Life’s like that ~ we enhance its innate sweetness when we slow down.

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In a recent post, Do You Ever Slow Down?, Eric provides 3 tips on soaking up the present moment before rushing headlong into the next.  And the next.  And the next.  And the next.

Reading Eric’s post reminded me of John Lennon’s decision to stop riding the merry-go-round:

Simon & Garfunkel’s recipe for “Feeling Groovy” also came to mind ~> “slow down, you move to fast, you got to make the morning last, kicking down the cobblestones, looking for fun and feeling groovy.”

Looking for fun?

Feeling groovy?

Splash color around.

Ignore the guide lines.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

Bridge Street Blues September 23, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Happiness, Humor, Music & Dance.
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16 comments

On Saturday night, we went to Bridge Street on the island for a Blues Fest.

A small one to be sure.  And we didn’t hear any actual Blues.  But we enjoyed watching the Hoop Dancers while listening to live music on island time.

One dancer suggested I check out Beth Lavinder’s videos on youtube.  So I did.

She makes it look easy!

We didn’t spend long at the Fest.  We got distracted by bands playing at four other outdoor venues on Bridge St. ~ Island Time Bar & Grill, Blue Marlin’s Back Alley, Bridge Tender Inn, and Dive In (a real dive).

Ya, mon.  De island be hopping . . . it’s a happening place.

Except at sunset . . .

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When time stands still long enough for us to catch our breath.

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That’s it.  Toes in the sand.  Eyes on the sky.

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Exhale.  Again.  Leave your worries sitting in the sand.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Garage Bands & Garbage Men September 21, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Fun & Games, Humor, Music & Dance, Sustainable Living.
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20 comments

When we went to Snooty’s 65th Birthday Bash, we enjoyed the sights and sounds, including a Garage Band called The Garbage Men.

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The band’s members created playable instruments out of cereal boxes without topses and other found and re-purposed materials.

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Their performance reminded me of something I might see on Sesame Street or Mulberry Street.  Or perhaps near a picked-over landfill in Paraguay.

Aah . . . that’s better!

I don’t know about you, but the closest I’ve come to playing a home-grown instrument was putting fresh wax paper in my Kazoo.

 

Can you Kazoo?

Diminishing Appetites & Metabolites September 13, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Food & Drink, Humor, Music & Dance.
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27 comments

I don’t know about you, but my appetite is not what it once was . . . which is just as well since my metabolism is also headed south, in inverse proportion to my advancing age.

In younger years, I ate an impossibly large quantity of food at times.  Perhaps that’s why I often felt like a gargantuan plodding oaf?

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In recent years, both appetite and metabolism have taken a nose dive, entering into a rapid free-fall descent.

No.  My weight has NOT followed suit.  Thank you for asking.

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As newlyweds, BFF and I could easily down a large pizza in a single sitting without thinking twice (or tasting it twice due to reflux).  These days, a large cheese pie lasts for several meals ~ a single slice, that’s nice.

Most times, I don’t mind.  Smaller appetites are better for our bottom line.

Last Monday, we went to Tarpon Pointe Grill and Tiki Bar for Labor Day play.

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On the website, someone had advertised 1/2-price appetizers.   We decided to swing by for a light lunch.

On inquiry of the bartender, our information turned out to be misinformation.

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They did have a few Happy Hour specials available, but none appealed to the vegetarians in us.

After looking over the menu, we decided to split a beer and an order of fries while listening to the guitarist, Ricci D, play an eclectic mix of songs ~ from Dave Matthews to Neil Young to Crosby Stills & Nash to Matchbox 20.

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Appetites sated, we wandered around Tarpon Pointe enjoying the gorgeous water views and river breezes.

It turned out to be a perfect Labor Day ~ easy on the eyes, the ears, the stomach, and our wallets.

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Aah . . . that’s better!

If you’re wondering where all the people are . . . an enormous gargantuan plodding oaf ate them . . . like French fries!

Fi Fie Fo Fum!

Circle of Friends September 8, 2013

Posted by nrhatch in Fiction, Fun & Games, Humor, Music & Dance, Word Play.
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33 comments

Wikipedia ~ Dredge

I scanned the room, wondering who had dredged the bottom of the gene pool to compile this motley mess.

Gyrating hips and hipsters occupied the dance floor.

Transfixed by the less-than-smooth moves of countless flailing limbs, I stood on the perimeter of the precipice, sipping a frozen  margarita.

Is this what social gatherings had become in my absence?

A sea of misfits twitching and twisting and twerking around in a lawful, yet lewd, display of claimed carnality?

Tiggers-R-UsIn horrified fascination, I watched writhing torsos engaged in blatant mating rituals designed to entice the preferred gender to take a gander.

Satisfied this foray was not the way to expand my circle of friends, I fled the scene ~ claiming a pert and perky pink parasol as a suitable souvenir.

Aah . . . that’s better!

Jumble Prompt:  Dredge, Occupy, Frozen, Social, Lawful, Entice . . . Circle of Friends

Related post:  Sidey’s Weekend Theme ~ Circle

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