Memories & Milestones: July 5 – 11

Here’s some dates to celebrate, from the new weekly column, MEMORIES & MILESTONES.

JULY 5-11

PT BarnumJuly 5, 1810: P. T. Barnum’s Birth Anniversary

“Ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls, children of all ages…” It’s the ‘Greatest Show on Earth’, enjoyed by roughly 30 million people each year.

Much of the early success of this popular circus is due to a man born over 200 years ago. A consummate showman and brilliant promoter, he once said, “If I shoot at the sun I may hit a star.” He found his fame. PT Barnum’s legacy continues to bring laughter and enjoyment to boys and girls and children of all ages.

July 8, 1911: Nan Jane Aspinwall’s Grand Feat

In a year when American women didn’t have the right to vote yet, Nan Jane Aspinwall set out on a historic journey. She was the first woman to cross the United States on horseback. She covered 4,500 miles in 301 days. Why? Why, to deliver a letter from San Francisco’s mayor to New York City’s mayor, of course.

July 9, 1893: First Open Heart Surgery

With all the medical advancements this century, it’s amazing to realize that the first open heart surgery occurred well over a hundred years ago. Dr. Daniel Hale Williams operated on James Cornish, who suffered from a severe stab wound to his chest. The patient not only survived the surgery, but lived for many years following this groundbreaking surgery.

July 11, 1960: To Kill a Mockingbird Published

On this date 55 years ago, Harper Lee’s first and only book was published. To Kill a Mockingbird is a best seller, selling over 40 million copies since its publication. It was awarded a Pulitzer Prize in 1961 and became an Oscar winning movie in 1962.

Overshadowing this milestone date, is Harper Lee’s second book, due out July 14, 2015. With a release date within days of this 55th anniversary, Go Set a Watchman is already a bestseller. Before it’s even been released.

This column is available for publication. Contact me at texastrishafaye@yahoo.com for details.

Alice’s Desire

Alice’s Desire.

Wisdom Wednesdays – Time is not on your side

Originally posted on Be Like Water:

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Now Available: Texas Historic Museums: North Texas

Originally posted on Vintage Daze:

Heritage Park in Euless – the first brick house in Euless, an 1850’s log cabin and an old barn from Camp Bowie lumber.

I want to go there!

Chestnut Square Historic Village in McKinney – a living history museum demonstrating how people lived in early Collin County.

I want to go there!

Heritage Farmstead in Plan – a living history museum on 4 ½ acres.

I want to go there!

A walking tour in Rockwall.

I want to do that too!

The list keeps growing, longer and longer from week to week. Places I want to see and visit. Museums, sites, and heritage villages that will take me back in time.

And this is without the places where I’ve been that I want to return to: Log Cabin Village in Fort Worth. Dublin, the home of Dr. Pepper. Fort Richardson in Jacksboro. And so many more.

North Texas LKO CoverOh, there’s so many…

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Weekend Thoughts – Be Grateful

trishafaye:

A perfect reminder to BE GRATEFUL!
Thanks for the post Be Like Water.

Originally posted on Be Like Water:

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Scooter’s Tale: A Rescue Cat’s Story

LKO COVEROnce upon a time … a three week old feral kitten was abandoned by its mother.

This fairy tale could have had an ugly ending. But it wouldn’t be a very good fairy tale without a happily ever after ending, would it?

Enter a bit of magical luck – the little kitten (one without mittens) was rescued. He found a new forever home, in the midst of a family filled with other rescues. A bought of calicivirus in the feline family almost caused a totally different ending. Fortunately the cats only lost one of their nine lives and Scooter lived another day.

He tells the tale of his life, dictating his words to Mama Pat, who transcribes his story to bring it to others.

Tips for caring for young kittens and information about feral’s and calicivirus is included in this ebook.

100% of the author’s proceeds of this story goes to help other rescue kittens and cats. Half of the profits remain in the DFW Metroplex area while the other half go to Cats of Angel’s Meadow, in Kentucky.

Available at: Amazon and Smashwords

Dear Arlie: Postcards to a Friend (1907 – 1913)

Dear Arlie_LKO coverTraces of a friendship over a hundred years ago remain in the postcards Pauline Washburn sent to her friend Arlie Shinkle. Enjoy the journey of their friendship through these postcards from 1907 to 1913.

The historic images on these 21 post cards, along with the words inscribed on the back, take us back to a different time and place. The first cards are sent from Pauline in Bloomington IL to Arlie in Ellsworth IL. Images showcase East Side Square in Bloomington IL, Main Building, Illinois State Normal University, Normal IL and others typical of popular early 1900’s postcard.

Postcards after 1910 were sent from Los Angeles CA, showcasing many historic features of southern California: the California Alligator Farm, a steam engine traveling through orange groves, bathing at Long Beach, the National Orange Show in San Bernardino, Avalon on Santa Catalina Island, an assortment of New Year’s cards, and Pauline’s photograph postcard gracing the cover.

A bonus 1911 postcard from another friend, Millie, shows Sauble Inn in Ludington, Michigan, with a period motor car.

A brief history about early postcards follows the images. Information on Miller Park in Bloomington and Old Settler’s picnics in McLean County IL, both mentioned in the correspondence, are included as historical background to the two friends.

Come along and join us as we travel back in time, thanks to the traces of the past these women left us.

Dear Arlie is available now at Smashwords: https://www.smashwords.com/books/view/531997

It will be available on Amazon.com after April 2nd.

Wash on Monday: Eight Stories of the People behind the Antiques

Wash on Monday: Eight Stories of the People behind the Antiques.

Be Gentle with Yourself – Tomorrow is Another Day

Be Gentle with Yourself – Tomorrow is Another Day

(Today’s post is an excerpt from EVERY DAY’S A GOOD DAY: Remaining Positive in a Retail or Service Based Profession.)

EDGD_be gentle with yourselfToday was one of “those” days. You know what “those” days are. I know you do, or else you wouldn’t be reading this. And it reminded me of an important nugget I had to share.

This journey of remaining optimistic in the face of retail or service annoyances is not a smooth, even road. Yes, this is a journey that we’re on, hopefully progressing at a somewhat steady pace. Some days or weeks we’ll make great strides, reaching reservoirs of patience and infinite calmness that we didn’t know we possessed. And other days, well … they exist, those days where we feel like we’re back at the beginning. Our goal is, or should be, to have continued growth, be it baby steps inching along, or be it huge leaps bounding along the path. At the end of each day, if we can look back and see progress, whether in large or small increments, that is what’s important.

For this issue of remaining positive in our working environment is not an all or nothing thing. It’s not one-day-we’re-Negative-Nellies and the next day …. Whoop … Instant-never-wavering-Positive-Polly’s.

There will be days, and even weeks, where we’ll sail along on an optimistic tide – always cheerful, patient, nary a grumble escaping from our lips. And then, in one moment, it all comes to a screeching halt, with steam rising from our collar, our ears bright red with aggravation, and temples pounding, warning of an impending headache.

Today was one of those. The day was almost over. Thirty more minutes and a genuine smile was still on my face. My order was completed well before lunch time, leaving me some extra time to help order in another department. General maintenance in the department done, labels on, new labels ordered, a few packages repaired. I’d even had time to pop in and watch my safety videos for the month. Check. Check. And Check.

I was still cheerfully assisting customers, helping them figure out fabric dimensions for a project and taking them to other areas of the store in search of what they needed. I had the duster out, finishing the last of my zoning (general straightening and cleaning of our departments) when I heard a voice behind me.

Yep. There he was. The district manager. I didn’t even know he was in the store. Thank goodness at least he caught me in the middle of doing my job and doing it properly. But, his impromptu visit rearranged the rest of my day.

I called for my zone check, which we can’t leave without the closing manager walking our department to ensure we’d done a proper zoning.

Fifteen minutes later – nothing. No response. I went looking for the closing manager. Ah, she was in the middle of a discussion with the DM.

That’s okay. It shouldn’t take long. It’s still not quite time to clock out. I’ll be patient and catch her in a few.

And then, in my pacing, I pass by the office and see all three managers sitting in the office, with yellow legal pads on laps, and the DM sitting behind the desk.

Now my dilemma. It’s now past time to clock out. I can’t clock out without a manger checking my zoning. Yet, I can’t stay late waiting for them. It’s already marked on my sheet that I’m 0.20 OVER my allowed time (yes, that’s a whole 12 minutes over. We can’t have that!)

I can’t go. I can’t stay.

There’s a third option. Interrupt the grand powwow in the office and ask. Woo-boy … I’m not EVEN going to go that route! No siree! I’ve never been on the receiving end of the wrath of the DM. But I’ve seen others there and I know that that’s one place I don’t want to be.

By 4:08 pm the convention was over and I got my reprieve. Now I’m 20 minutes over, instead of my 12 minutes. And by now the shoulders are tense, the jaw is clenched and the cyclone of aggravating and irritating thoughts is rampaging through my brain, stirring up every negative thought about this job that I thought I’d laid to rest long ago.

No matter the progress, no matter how consistently you’ve improved in wearing the mantle of cheerful optimism around your shoulders, just know that in a moment, you can be right back to where you started on this journey.

My purpose of sharing this story with you isn’t to garner your sympathy. It’s merely to show that we all, every one of us, has moments where we revert to a negative, complaining employee. And that’s all right.

What you need to take from this is

  • Don’t beat yourself up.
  • Be gentle with yourself.
  • Tomorrow is another day and another chance.

When setbacks appear, don’t spend your time and your energy whipping yourself over it. Admit it happened. Acknowledge that you’re human, just like the rest of us. Know it happens to us all. And go on.

Go home. Treat yourself to a comfort snack. Call a friend. Take a long hot bath. Get a good night’s sleep. And go on. It won’t be the last time. But as you gain more practice at remaining positive, these instances will happen less frequently, at longer and longer intervals.

A Memory Garden with no Plants?

What? You can’t garden you say. Your thumb is perpetually brown, not a green sprig in sight?

That’s okay. You can still have an area where you pay tribute to your loved ones that have passed. You can use statuary, stepping stones, garden signs, flags, windmills, chimes, bricks painted with their names – the possibilities are endless.

Here’s a short excerpt from MEMORY GARDENS: Botanical Tributes to Celebrate our Loved Ones (just released at Amazon this week) to give you some ideas.

*******************

MG_heart stumpWhat? You say you don’t have room for a garden? You don’t have a place to put any potted plants? Nothing grows there? You don’t have a green thumb?

It is possible to have a beautiful memory garden area without a single plant. Thousands of concrete and polyresin pieces exist, with loving sayings, angels, rainbows and a multitude of symbolic meanings that can create a memory area at your house, on a patio, in a corner of a room, or on a mantle. Angels in every form or fashion you can imagine are available. Pick up any mail order catalog. Do an internet search. Possibilities abound with something you can use to create a special space for our loved one.

Were they an ocean lover? Fill a basket, or a planter area, with sea shells, driftwood or pieces of smooth edged sea glass.

Were they a bowler? An old bowling ball or a bowling pin inscribed with their name will fill your memory area with special thoughts.

Look around your house or your yard. Find a corner, a niche, an area that you can fill with mementoes that bring your special loved one to mind. It may take a weekend. It may be an ongoing project that you keep adding to as you go along. When you spy that additional little trinket that brings your loved one to mind, think of them as you purchase it and bring it home to add to your collection. Their memories remain alive in your remembrance. Cherish the memories that return to you unbidden, even though they are sometimes painful and saddening. Our tears and emotions keep our feelings alive, and the connections with our loved ones open.

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