A Wayward Dream

026-ginger-rogers-and-fred-astaire-theredlist

A Wayward Dream

~~~

Tonight I revisited the songs

We used to dance to

I thought about

The way our bodies

Touched and swayed

To the music

And for a few moments

We were suspended

In time

~~~

A time when we

Were in tune

With one another

About seven years

Packed with laughter

tears tender memories

Some were bad

But mostly good

Deep and true

~~~

A wayward dream

of eternal love

trapped between the past

And between the now

A love paralleled

Alive with contradiction

For my heart to

Achingly dream

A wayward dream

Written by: Theresa H Hall

December 29, 2016 @ 5:00 AM

Copyright © 2016 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

A Theory Of Musical Conversation

ariel-view-maryland

For my left ear Soundscapes, for my right Miles Davis. The small computer fan on my desktop whirls air to cool my iMac, and the floor fan spins out the re-streamed air from the ORECK air-purifier. Every so often Hannah, who is one of my four cats, softly snores and Lillian, her small frame emits soft puffs of slumber. Cosmos paces to-and-fro, waiting for me to carve more turkey. While Regis, is curled into a ball of fluffy black and white, on the console table by the window. I am attuned to every nuance of released sound. It is peaceful. My half-eaten salad lies silently waiting in a bowl colored in turquoise, with patterns of white circling the rim and snowflakes in the well. I think of the bottle of wine waiting to be un-corked as I curl my toes under, to feel the softness of the carpet. Joe is on his way to his office and the skies outside are a light but soft gray. Clouds are blanketed between the earth and the sun.

Listening to both movements of music I am calmed and attuned by the inspiration of the composers. Messages from the hearts of musicians. I decipher their moods and dreams and yearnings, together with the intended energy to echo around the chambers of my brain. I acknowledge a knocking on the doors to the chambers within, and they continue their inquiries, until a door opens wide, to either create new thoughts or to re-play old memories. Music is magical.

During a movie or symphony, music interprets the mood of the scene asking us to follow along on flourishing emotion, or to imagine an experience. These melodies are movements of vibration and each of us tolerate them according to our current vibrational experience. They either carry us along making us yearn for more, or they may call forth the opposing desire. When we are not the vibrational match, these tunes, no matter how thrilling or moving, can make us feel annoyed and we rush to shut them out, or switch them off. Many times changing the channel makes a world of difference. Some days I find I have to search until our vibrational match is found.

The theory of musical conversation is simply an acceptance. Chords and notes strung together create a message of hope or despair, longing, or the freedom from a circumstance. Our heart-strings either absorb or reject but there is always a reaction, whether it is acceptance, reluctance, exuberance, passivity or indifference.

Our Creator, the Universe, God, knew we needed this important dialogue. Birdsong, the wind, storms, the ocean, insects, all living creatures … they provide for us comfort and background for us to enjoy their presence on this planet. We might gaze to the heavens above but in outer space there is no sound. I suppose the earth’s atmosphere acts like an echo chamber. Our communication relies totally on our vibrational response to the musical conversation in play. A drumbeat is another type of music as they offer a primitive power of a different vibrational pull.

I just heard a distant boom like a discharged shotgun. Although it is now hunting season thankfully, we live in a protected area, a wildlife sanctuary. I disturbed Regis to look outside to share four deer standing on the rise, about 300 feet from our home. I roused him to look, but in his confused and sleepy state he didn’t understand, jumped down and walked away. I waved to them and they stared back. Once Joe looked outside our bedroom window to see a magnificent buck standing two feet away. He may have been visiting Regis, who looks outside a lot of times. Joe said he was quiet and could see the buck standing at attention as if sensing being watched. My husband got the gift of experiencing the thrill of being so close to this beautiful creature that he didn’t want to move. For a long five minutes, they acknowledged one another in silence before the buck sauntered off into the night.

Musical conversation while varied are most appreciated when we truly listen, and are in accord to hear the messages intended by the composer.

Demanding My Own Happiness

Cat by artist Breton 2012. Etched in wood oil paintingYou’d think it’s a private matter, not something one debates or discusses. Understanding the fundamentals of achieving happiness or joy is paramount unless you enjoy spinning your wheels. No one else can ever be responsible for our joy. I am speaking of the inner glow. This is where we come in. We must take responsibility for our feelings, whereby we practice and train ourselves to think the right thoughts. Most things around us or surrounding us are little exercises in life we must sift through, in order to figure out what it is that we do want. It changes moment by moment, thought by thought.

It was explained to me that we cannot be against anything. I wondered how this could be the truth. The Universe is based on quantum physics. It includes the much preached about Laws Of Attraction. It is relevant. What we send out, like a boomerang, we draw back to ourselves. Especially those self-righteous beams of thoughts. Not be against violence? Exactly. For when you are against a thing it provides instantaneous momentum. We need rather to be for self-improvement, the clean environment, people’s rights, spreading goodness, etc. What we focus on makes it more powerful.

Taking my own advice, I have decided to focus on the kind of world I want, which equates to my curtailing my reading and listening to the horror show that has been unfolding right before our very eyes. Like a snowball rolling downhill, it is compounding and we can no longer afford to continue allowing the negatives to grow bigger. It is a distraction and we need to collectively stop giving these persons, our energy and attention. We need to do the exact opposite. Promote all good things. Only the good stuff. No matter how so and so, has been spewing on and on, or what the news channels are hi-lighting, because it has brought our nation to its knees. It is time to wake up and smell the roses. In the meantime, pick some flowers, send out good vibrations and let’s focus our attention on them in order to see how quickly things  improve.

The first matter is to understand that only we can make ourselves happy. No one else has the power to do this, so we may now all stop depending upon others because they only turn into the excuse when we are miserable. We can take the pressure off of them. We need to accept our energy and our connection to The Source, in order to move things along. I like that I am in control. I won’t give away my power ever again. I Am demanding my own happiness from myself. Being the responsible party … it’s so much easier.

I’m Just The Caretaker

"African Violets 4-12-16"

“African Violets 4-12-16”

 

I feel my parental chest swell whenever I notice new blooms

Taking pride in proving to the world … I have not killed this plant

Although I know I only play a small part in this arrangement

The joy I experience knowing that my flora skills are developing

Exceeds the simple truth that

I’m just the caretaker

I water … I prune … I set the pots in sunlight

I speak to … dance with … and sing to them

I’m just the caretaker

But I feel like the mother

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Out With The Old … In With The New

cherryblossomgirlpicforlayout

I can see it, hear it, feel and smell it as well. Spring is in the air. Here in Washington, D.C., our cherry trees are stretching their branches, lifting their buds up to the sky. The warmth of the sun’s rays stirs all those glorious, pent-up emotions inside the tree. I expect the life-energy to be teeming with a flurry of action and buzzing with accelerated vibrations. Each limb has its job to perform so the tiny blossoms will burst open against the blue skies … and when they do, it’s almost as if it happens overnight. The waterways and parks become magical.

Along the Tidal Basin, cherry trees line the curved waterways, gracing the entire area and pathways. The blooms are almost ready to puff open thus releasing their fragrant perfume. It is a wondrous sight once the stage is set for throngs of people to visit our Nation’s Capital. Truly, it is one of the most popular times to come to Washington, D.C. Some of the trees on either side of the paths are so mature they touch each other, creating a romantic archway or tunnel of blossoms overhead.

Springtime also inspires us to deep clean our homes. What a good feeling it is to throw open the windows, clean between the nooks-and-crannies, sort through clothes and delegate whatever is no longer necessary or desired, into bags destined for donation or the annual yard sale. “Out with the old … In with the new”, was what Mother used to say. So freshen your homes and expect good things to come. Spring is just a week away. High time to welcome a fresh start … a new beginning.

Here is a link for 2016 Cherry Blossoms Update. And another: D.C. Cherry Blossom Guide.

Copyright © 2016 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Artistic Inclination

Painting by Pablo Picasso

Painting by Pablo Picasso

Artistic Inclination

~~~

Woke up today with my mind

Brimming over with ideas

Watched a Picasso video

Thanks to Julian

A colleague

~~

A friend really

He shares with us

Historical stories and facts

To keep us coming back

For more

~

So back to my story

About how I have

Stayed in the background

Until now for such a

Long time

~

It’s just my artist’s inclination

Lying quietly while my brain

Produces dreams and such

Feeling terrific vibratory joy

A rush

~

It’s my artistic inclination

Painting in my head

Poetic license

Scripting words for the living

The dead

~

My artistic inclination

Singing favorite tunes

Visiting musical days past

And yearning for what is

To come

~

Theresa H Hall

February 9, 2016 @3:33 PM

Copyright © 2016 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Independence From Others’ Opinions

Earth-at-night-NASA

As we center and surround ourselves with the inner-peace we are working toward, we can concentrate on the oneness of us all. We become secure in how we feel about ourselves. Negative words or thoughts from others carry no weight. As we tune into speaking our gratitude for things we have and those things we want, we are then able to enjoy life anew. We can draw power from those things which we have not noticed or paid attention to for a while.

Everywhere we look there is infinite intelligence and perfection. There is abundance all around and through us. We carry the Spirit of Our Creator, Our Universe within us. We create with our thoughts and words … good or bad. We must consider improving situations, relationships, our communities and in taking interest in our world. By listening to others … hearing with loving hearts … and speaking only good words today.

“We are not our bodies, our possessions or our careers. Who we are is Divine Love and that is INFINITE”.

Dr. Wayne W. Dyer

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Photo: Earth at Night by NASA

Old Blue Eyes On My Mind

"Frank Sinatra ... Old Blue Eyes"

“Frank Sinatra … Old Blue Eyes”

Does what I wrote in the past still count? Or once written and read through, could it lose some of its impact? These are my thoughts as I wake up over my coffee. “I’ve Got You Under My Skin”, is playing repeatedly in my head, even now. I dreamt about Frank Sinatra, and each time I changed positions in bed, he was singing another one of his hits. Old Blue Eyes himself.

Last night I watched the recording I’d made of HBO’s two-part documentary about Frank Sinatra, “All Or Nothing At All”. I stayed up until 5:30 a.m. as I couldn’t resist watching the entire production. It was four hours well spent. The footage and video coverage brought home the enormity of the vision he’d dreamed about from the time he was a teenager. One that would touch us all. His strong work ethic, dogged determination and hard work, sometimes to the point of exhaustion, was the price he gladly paid in order to reach the stars, becoming a living legend of the twentieth century. When my attention has been captured, I morph into a human sponge to absorb all the details.

Beginning with his difficult entry into this world, baby Frank (weighing over twelve pounds!), nearly didn’t make it. He suffered a broken ear drum and the doctor who was called in to help, most likely used high forceps to pull him from his mother’s womb. He was left with a few scars but his grandmother was a hero for splashing him with cold water, then patting and massaging him to encourage him to survive. We’re so glad she did!

For the music lovers out in the world, Frank Sinatra’s hand in his song arrangements, the motion picture industry, and his inclusiveness of all people, regardless of their ethnic background, when it wasn’t the popular thing to do, is a story you won’t want to pass up. I know I’ll watch it again for the history I wasn’t taught in school, but mostly to review and watch his story unfold. It is personal and thrilling as well. I don’t want give away more than his precious beginnings in life. See for yourself this man who impressed and influenced the world, long before Elvis, or The Beatles did. His impact was huge and is long-lasting. You’ll be amazed at how he gets under your skin.

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Where Did Monday Go?

HangingChair

I just looked up and saw it was after midnight and I’d gone from yesterday to now. Where did Monday go? I usually take off on Mondays … allow myself to cool out and concentrate on relaxing my mind, my body, my spirit. I like to let my mind go blank and absorb what is going on in the vibrations of teeming life surrounding me, my home; the new life buzzing by my windows. I really meant to do this and lounge around without concern for wifely duties. Even the cats slept most of the day away. I had good intentions, but it fell by the sidelines when I sat down to enter Facebook land.

It’s nice to see my friends and what they get up to, hear about performances of musically passionate peers and catch some social news. I must admit to becoming engrossed and roped in. I visited but then felt compelled to write, make comments and voice my point of view about animals, videos, horrible and tragic news, some kindnesses of caring people, and that an elderly woman in a nursing home can keep her elderly cat with her. I was so upset the other day when I read about this happening, that she and her beloved cat would be separated. Apparently enough of us disagreed and it made a difference.

I didn’t get my day off. I got involved and I was emotionally wrung out … like a dish rag. For those of you who never used one, it’s the old-fashioned way to scrub your dishes. An old saying. I bet the people behind the scenes at Facebook land, have determined, sifted, what posts will show up on my feeds. I have been targeted with so much controversy lately, that I am forced to write something helpful, encouraging or speak out over social injustices.

Time to figure out how to get back to a more simplistic feed, shut out the things that disturb me. There’s too much sadness going on and it is dragging me down. Just wanted to say that I finally got it. I’ll have to visit Facebook land sparingly, unless my feeds improve to a gentler atmosphere. Otherwise I’ll go screaming into the night. That’s another old-fashioned saying. IGSITN is the new way to write it, so it sounds/looks current. I’m hip to a lot of the newfangled abbreviations. Wishing you a better world than the one happening right now. I’m returning to the place I refer to as Teesa’s World. Time to sit in my hanging chair.

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Finest Freaky Friday

My WorkplaceOn Sunday, I will celebrate my eighth year of blogging. Over the past two years I have been keeping more to myself. I suppose as the old saying goes, every seven years our tastes change and sometimes our direction. I’d felt overwhelmed by outside challenges and my focus on blogging became distracted. Through the years I have kept to myself, even when I was an on-stage performer for two decades. One might believe being “out there’, was not only very public … but it seemed to negate my privacy issue. I must insist that other than having some very close friends and acquaintances, I am still a private homebody. I do venture out occasionally, and feel that now we are settled in our condo, that I shall be doing a lot more exploring as soon as the weather turns warmer. There’s lots of territory to discover with my camera and I’ve decided that I will dine with people I am interested in with the intention of conducting personal interviews. Peeling back the persona to see the inner-workings of another is a delicate process.

Our world is complex, mainly because humans grow bored quickly then turn their attention to the next popular thing. I find it amusing to have so many directions from which to choose how I will fill my days. I’m shifting my computer in order to stand up for the most part. The downside result of sitting down for hours at a time, has made me discover a lack in stamina. My Tony Gazelle is to my left and lately I have been putting him to good use. Moving is key and whilst I will continue to write, I will also begin to adventure out to meet new people and visit new places. My city is full of historical memorials, artists, restaurants and an old theatre, plus I’ll be tapping into the music venues, too.

Friday is the best day to me as it heralds in the weekend. Have a blooming Cherry Blossom Weekend to all who are in the Washington, D.C. area, and a lovely weekend to everyone else.

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Peach Crostada

Peaches have always been one of my favorite fruits and it need not be summertime in order for me to enjoy them. I purchased a can of fruit pie filling, in order to enjoy the delectable flavors of a peach dessert. This technique is a rustic pie called a Crostada, and is easier to slice and serve than a traditional pie. Serve after it is cooled with ice cream or a dollop of whipped Creme Chantilly.

 Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

"Sweet dough folded over in a rustic way, brushed with heavy cream and sprinkled with sugar"

“Sweet dough folded over in a rustic way, brushed with heavy cream and sprinkled with sugar”

 

'The crust is flaky and complements the softness of he peaches"

‘The crust is flaky and complements the softness of the peaches”

"Double pans allow for an even bake without complications of a burnt bottom crust"

“Double pans allow for an even bake without complications of a burnt bottom crust”

"The filling needs to bubble before it is removed from the oven"

“The filling needs to bubble before it is removed from the oven”

 

"Baked to a golden Brown ... once cooled the bottom crust has a crunch which is precisely what one wants to achieve"

“Baked to a golden brown … once cooled, the bottom crust has a crunch which is precisely what one wants to achieve”

The Cold Season and A Dash Of Flavor

DSCN4508 DSCN4505 DSCN4507 DSCN4501 cinnamon coffee cake DSCN4506 DSCN4504I confess that it is all my fault. I shared my horrid cold with my husband. In my defense someone gave it to me, for the day after Christmas and gathering with our families, the tell-tale tickling and urge to clear my throat began the next night. I remembering wanting to sing (I was outside guarding the moving van) when I pondered this idea. I told myself I’d better not strain the vocal chords (I am a vocalist for those of you who are unacquainted with me and my past). Guarding the U-Haul van you might ask? We did finish moving, back in September, but those storage bins we rented for five months, needed to be emptied since we had unpacked the original-move belongings. We had made a quick run on the christmas tree stand and ornaments ten days before. So this was the final push to shove these things (art easels, brushes, paints) and bulky objects into our new place. I digress. Even though earlier that day it was unseasonably warm, at this juncture, it was bone-chilling cold. Cold temperatures isn’t good for vocal chords and I refrained from singing any refrain. The next day there was that hard, body-shaking sneeze. I knew I was in for it.

Joe had been experiencing a dry cough for weeks and said it was nothing whenever I asked him how he was feeling. Guys are like this. He makes me go to the doctor whenever the tiniest thing happens but he emphatically tells me that he doesn’t need to go. I shrug my shoulders. He is nine months my senior so I give him respect. I do not insist. As of Friday afternoon he sounded just as sick as I was. Now he is listening to me and … snatching my medicine. Hopefully it’ll go away soon, or I’m flying us to the south just like the birds do.

Even though my neighbors (who have been promised some of my baked goods) have naturally, had to wait, I can cook for the two of us. I couldn’t make him any more infected if I tried. We nurse our colds but we don’t have to just drink soup.

I prepared an Onion, Potato Gruyere Gallette and some more Cinnamon Coffee Cake (sans the pecans), freshly tossed salad and veggie patties. Since I feed him with homemade goodness, I stopped being guilty for making him feel yucky.

Copyright © 2015 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Operation Success – Holiday Baking

Gert's Mama's Pound Cake My Breakfast 12-22-14 Pecan Cinnamon Coffee CakeJust an update about my recent eye surgery and that everything went great. I can see what I’m doing without wearing glasses. HooRay! The left eye lens is a closer range than the right eye lens (which was replaced over nine years ago). Clear vision is a treat, an absolute treat. The distance and reading glasses I have can work, but when I return to the optometrist in about two and a-half weeks, he’ll let me know if I require a change. Then it’s on to renewing my driver’s license and lots of new projects. My blood pressure is normal, my blood-work is normal and now that I can see straight (ha) I am no longer dizzy. Fantastic!

Today we got up very early. I’m hoping we can keep this earlier schedule and sleep when it is dark outside rather than light. It will be a good change. Plus, bakers begin early morning and it feels right getting up before sunrise. It’s the time when the world is nice and quiet.

I baked a favorite “Gert’s Mama’s Pound Cake” (the perfect recipe), I borrowed my friend Buck Bannister at Sugar Pies. He is such an accomplished baker. Next I made “Cinnamon Pecan Coffee Cake”. One is for us and one for Joe’s office. He’ll take along the big cake as well which should drum up lots of holiday cheer.

For breakfast I sautéed onions, red pepper slices and tossed in handfuls of fresh spinach, to accompany my fried eggs. Joe likes his scrambled with cheese and that’s what he was served. Later today I’m planning out the next few days of whirlwind baking: breads, cheesecakes, pound cakes, cookies, bars, mini-fruit tarts and mini-fruit pies. Perhaps between now and the New Year … a chocolate soufflé, then a cheese soufflé, brandied cherries and cream cheese on puff pastry, and in honor of my Chef Mark @ LAC, an “Apple Tart Normand“. I’ve been toying with the idea of serving “Seafood Newburg” over puff pastry shells and baking one of my “Onion, Potato and Gruyere Cheese Galettes“. The Holidays are a collection of special days when cooking, baking, sharing time together and decorations bring The Winter Wonderland into our hearts to make new memories. Happy Holidays … Tis The Season!

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Why I Haven’t Written Lately

Sometimes my brain goes “Tilt!” For the past year I have been running on overload, figuring out things, and organizing them.These matters have taken up most of my time. I have a Venus in the Sign of Cancer, which equates to me hiding myself inside myself, to my approaching everything cautiously, moving from side-to-side all the while creeping forward in direction and doing so at a slow pace. Much unlike my Sun Sign, Leo, that fearless leader who sometimes hides in the corner clutching his tail, or in my case … her tail. Throw in the sting of my Ascendent Sign, Scorpio applying that fiercely, cunning eagle-eyed stare to urge me to focus on everyone and everything with a microscopic glare. And finally, fighting with my inner nature or Moon Sign under Libra, weighing out the pros and cons of every minute detail. It’s exhausting!

I have met some wonderful new friends along the way. Treasures they are and we wouldn’t be where we are today without their Divine Intervention. I think they might be Angels because there is a light of warmth and love that glows from them. We’re so lucky to have them!

Just have one more seemingly grand matter to work out before the sigh of relief can be exhaled. Well … two, as I am to have surgery in mid December. The numerous tests my doctors had me undergo made me feel nervous, but alas, my fears could be put to rest on the majority of my concerns as to whether this or that was wrong. Hopefully, I will be able to regain my eyesight 100% in my left-eye and my dizzy spells will cease altogether. I’ve been noticing that part of growing up is having a body that changes over time and little adjustments need to be made. I was very worried about my blood sugar as 1.5 years ago I was told it was dangerously borderline. So instead of watching the amount of sugar I was inhaling, I hid my head in the sand and kept doing the same things. About four months ago, I knew I would have to get the dreaded blood work drawn; I am happy to report my sugar levels were good as was my bad cholesterol good, but my good cholesterol is over 50 points too high. I can and am doing what I need to do quickly in order to reduce these levels. My blood pressure has been fluctuating and I am told stress is what I need to reduce … immediately.

So … there you have it. I need to drink water (I do this already) cool out on the sweets, baked goods and rich proteins and exercise. Reduce stress levels by 90% and get my eye surgery in about five more weeks. Then I will be able to return to work with eyes wide open, and not experience the vertigo and dizzy spells. Please send up good thoughts and prayers so I can cease worrying and allow the Blessings of the Universe to flow into my life. Thank you ever so much!

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

Happy Fourth Birthday Harper Jane!

Four years ago yesterday, September 13, 2010, Harper Jane Titherington came into our lives. She is beautiful, smart, funny and growing into a fearless adventuress. We are going to share a family get together and have cupcakes and ice cream. We love her so much and look forward to spending time together now she is getting to be a big girl. She started Pre K4 about a week ago and is always excited to learn new things and she plays well with the other children. What a thrilling time in the life of a youngster. Everything is new and fascinating.

Joe and I have finally moved into our new place and still have unpacking and figuring out the placement of things. We have spent much quality time together and while it was hot, exhausting, tiring and we got scrapes and bruises, we shared many intimate moments. Friendship is always better when shared and when you love each other, it’s even better!

I am back amongst the writers and shall endeavor to amuse and entertain you once again. HooRay!

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

What I’ve Been Doing Lately

 

JoeHallStudio

I was asked on BlogCatalog … “Do You Blog For Money?”

My first response was this:

“I write because I am passionate about it. I blog because I must communicate and sometimes it pays off.”

Then I was asked:

“Yes, being passionate about blogging is the key feature in sustaining the ever-growing community “but” what do you see in it? Money or passion or passion and money …”

To which I replied:

“I see a way to sit comfortably in my chair and by touching the keys of my iMac, I may join in conversations with people from around the globe. People whom I would never have connected with. I see a way to have my voice be heard without ever leaving my home. My mind is engaged and something inside myself … much bigger than I AM … transforms and is awakened. By blogging and interacting in cyber space, as I like to call it, I am a part of an electrifying energy of The Universe. Do you not feel it also? We might sit alone but we are never alone. It’s a big beautiful world with lots of different souls. Collectively speaking … we have it in us to encourage others and to improve the world by becoming aware and conscious of what is in the minds of others. We can reach out and hug someone or congratulate them. We give relevance and appreciation, which to me, is a fantastic way to share my life. I love the world.” 

** Please stop over to read my latest interview with talented author, Kathleen Maher.

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

What Scary/Funny Dreams May Come

Sensitive people out there, you know what I mean when I explain the movies, television shows we watch, everyday life and what we read on the Internet, sometimes play havoc on our nighttime slumbers. Just yesterday, Joe changed the movie channel and “Deep Impact” (click to watch this scene) was being shown. We tuned in at the part where father and daughter are hugging one another on the beach just as the meteor hits the Atlantic Ocean. The humongous wave envelopes them and the rest of the shore lines over half of the planet. I incorporated this scene into my dreams last night. I convinced myself I needed to shut down my body (no breathing), until the wave subsided. You see … I had secured myself in-between some pylons that were embedded with tons of concrete, deep into the Earths’ surface. This baby wasn’t going anywhere! I promised myself that I could go into suspended animation (a trance-like state), while the world was being turned topsy-turvy. I would survive sans air for hours. And I did! I lived to tell the other characters in my dream the way I survived. Apparently in dreams one can do this. I conquered my fears by resisting possible world destruction.

Next, I dreamed about the character in the BBC television series, “Orphan Black”. Not about the women but her friend with the dyed jet-black hair who is flamboyant, handsome in a strange way and the her side-kick. What a team they make. In my dream, he was running away from a copper. He was being chased in circles. Just as the policeman rounded one corner, Felix would dash round the next bend (almost out of sight), allowing the police a glimpse of the direction he had taken. Round and round they went while we onlookers watched the comedy unfold. Soon our amusement could be heard, much to the chagrin of the officer in pursuit. Down an alley Felix dodged out of sight by hiding behind one of those old-fashioned silver trash cans complete with a lid. He covered himself with a piece of burlap that conveniently lay atop the can just before the policeman ran past him … running onward, all the while jerking his head back and forth fervently searching for the bad boy he chased. We all had a good laugh. Felix stood from his crouching position and took a bow. We applauded him and then the dream was over.

The next dream was about a man wearing an oxygen mask and inhaling the air. He had been caring for dozens of cats he had found languishing in an old home. And it goes on and on these dreams, until I shake myself awake. I toss and turn and sometimes think Thank God that’s over. I never know what dreams will come once I close my eyes. How many of you have frightening or comical dreams that are influenced by what you are watching or reading?

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.

What Do You Mean … “No Problem”?

dscn2559-copy.jpgEnough! I have had it up to here with people, especially those serving the public, tout these two ill-used words. “No Problem.” When I attempt suggesting they try other more positive and appropriate ways to enlist and engage the customer or person on the other end of these tidbit exchanges, I get understanding nods (up and down movement) of their heads accompanied by blank stares. I suppose they think they are being criticized or simply do not care to make the effort to improve the way they tell a customer that they are not a problem, or a task is not a problem. Whoever said a request was any type of problem?

When a person says these words they are indirectly indicating that there is, might be, or could be a problem. Wow. I am in your restaurant yet you tell me my order is “No Problem”. I ask politely for a glass of water or a bottle of A-1 Sauce. What do I hear? “No Problem”. It’s cavalier to say the least and the world, mostly Americans from the USA, are touting these negative words and telling us that the service is in fact a problem … even when it really isn’t. Well, I have a problem with this because it conveys they are not glad and happy to see me there and to offer me the service for which I am paying. And most handsomely most of the time, too.

In a final attempt I ask the public to pass along these phrases (hopefully to spread quickly) and for us all to use them in place of the ever-popular and negative speak, “No Problem.” No matter what cost the meal or service we are paying for … it should not matter. We should be allowed to expect the best from anyone serving the public. Just remember to be polite, good customers and on your best behavior, too. Servers want to be treated well. Respect people … respect.

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“It should only take a few moments/minutes to do this for you madam/sir.”

“How glad I am that you chose to have me serve you today.”

“It is my pleasure to add value to your stay.”

“You are most welcome.”

“I hope your meal/stay will be everything you wish it to be.”

“I look forward to bringing you the best service today.”

“What a good selection you have chosen.”

“May I be of service to you?”

“Today we have something special to tempt your appetite.”

“Might I suggest an appetizer or cocktail?”

“The pleasure was mine.”

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The call I received this afternoon is the reason I decided to write on this topic. After everything I explained the voice at the other end of the line thanked me and ended with “No Problem.” To which I repeated “No Problem.” It’s time to let this phrase go … forever.

Remember … You may have just given the best service of your life but if you tack on these two words … “No Problem”, then you are leaving your satisfied customers with a bad taste in their mouths. Pamper them with one of these phrases and see the delight reflected in their smiles.

Copyright © 2014 “Sleeping Kitten – Dancing Dog!” All rights reserved.