Lemon Bay Evening

Lemon Bay Evening

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Ashokan Farewell

The Ashokan Farewell

"Ashokan Farewell" is a piece of music composed by Jay Ungar in 1982. It has served as a goodnight or farewell waltz at the annual Ashokan Fiddle & Dance Camps, run by the composer and his wife, at the lakefront campus (near Ashokan Reservoir) of the State University of New York at New Paltz. The tune was later used as the title theme of the 1990 PBStelevision miniseries The Civil War,[1] as well as the 1991 compilation album Songs of the Civil War.

Mary and Roy stopped in for the Nov 16th circle at Mercer's Fresh Roasted Coffees in Charlotte Harbor, Florida and delighted the group with The Ashokan Farewell.

Mercer's Saturdays Jams, a weekly gathering of musicians in the local Charlotte County, Florida area, presents a multitude of talented friends and friends of friends. The group of friends encourages and lends support to every level of talent and is also supported by a following of regulars who come for the afternoon. Customers of  Mercer's Fresh Roasted Coffees who stop in for their favorite roasted fresh beans are often surprised and treated to some great group playing which they otherwise would never have experienced.
Approaching it's six month of Saturdays celebration, the Jam's founding duo, Bo and Mary Kirgis, are thrilled with the growth and weekly revolving talent which supports them in this endeavor to bring acoustic music to Saturday afternoons. The expansion of the Mercer's floor space, partly due to the growing numbers on Saturdays, now offers a quiet seating area for diners, and drop ins for the Wi-fi and beverages, while the attentive audience fills the new addition of comfortable seating. 

Monday, November 11, 2013

There is nothing so old... or broken ....

That it has no Use ...

This restaurant was open in the late 1930's in Melbourne, AR. 
Proprietress Ruth Baker ... front right,  behind the counter

Then in the 1940's owned and operated by the man in the middle ..
Proprietor  Hawkshaw Davis 

...And again in the mid to late 1950's ...
Proprietor Ransom McCollum front right behind the counter

...and once more in 2006 to 2008 ... 
Proprietors... these Frumps  ...

What you SEE ... is what you get  ...

Monday, November 4, 2013

Native American Flute played by Thumper

Saturdays Jams @ Mercer's Fresh Roasted Coffees
Charlotte Harbor, FL 

Early July of this year, these two Frumps went in search of a venue we had been told about. Well, it was not a venue YET .. but a lovely Coffee Shop / Roastery in Charlotte Harbor. 
After sitting out with the "BLUES BROTHERS" down the road, 


we pulled up to the front of a nice strip mall with the smell of fresh roasted beans drawing us into the main entrance of Mercer's Fresh Roasted Coffees.

 A Welcoming Entrance

The atmosphere was nurtured by owners, Wayne and Valerie Mercer for two years in this location, (and two years in a previous location in Punta Gorda) as a quiet, welcoming local roastery, where you could sit a while and enjoy fresh brewed and specialty beverages. We Fell In Love with it! Earthy colors of coffee bean browns, clay colored reds, and golden sunset yellows made me feel like I was just melting into serenity. 

 Wrapped in the comfort of the colors and tones

The sun light focuses on the counter where you can watch the roasting process

Soft sounds of music streaming over the in house stereo made it possible to carry on personal conversations and not invade other customers private "space" .  
After a fresh bagel and a shared French Press, and finding ourselves the only customers at a rare moment, hubby inquired of Wayne his openness to a duo of "folkies" setting out a tip jar and quietly playing their own styles some afternoon. Wayne, in his mild mannered way, stated he wouldn't object at all! 

Leaving with the idea in mind that these Frumps would call midweek to determine a good day for trying this out, we headed home. BUT! Hubby suggested we just get the guitars and head right back for a trial hour or two that day!  The look on Wayne's face was priceless when in we strolled 45 minutes later guitars in hand and smiles on our faces. 

Well, needless to say, that was the beginning... and now 17 weeks later, the crowds have grown, of Musicians and Listeners! And so has the floor space! A courageous move on these Frumps' part, caused the domino effect of courageous moves and the Mercers have expanded! 

 Getting ready for Saturdays Jams before all the walls are painted

 Wayne tempted try it out and put his feet up

 Val adding the finishing touches of the wall art

 oh yeah, just right ..
and the WOW factor of the open space from the front entry

The following is just a sample of the broad genres and talents coming to these Mercer's Saturdays Jams. 

Therapy for the heart, mind and soul comes in many forms, but in this Frumps opinion, there is none so valuable as the music we have, and share.  

Friday, October 18, 2013

Florida Bobcat in my Backyard

I shared this YouTube video here so you can see that these awesome scenes are not uncommon.  Earlier this week, as I sat on the Lanai, I saw a beautiful bobcat strolling casually across the back yard of our neighbor. 
Dumbstruck and in awe, I just sat there watching until it stepped into the wooded lot and disappeared. Reporting this event to my husband and son later that day, left me a little doubtful of seeing this event in full daylight, and a very urban setting. 
UNTIL the next morning, as my hubby and I drove away from the house in mid morning daylight, I saw another bobcat (or maybe the same one) sitting along the side of the road, and as we approached, it got up and trotted into another undeveloped, wooded lot. 
As you can see in this video, this gal was not so surprised at her visitor that she couldn't get some great video footage of it, and did a good job a capturing its casual attitude in being in her yard. LOVE this Florida WILDLIFE ! 

The Shed ... AND the Post Script at the end ...

Did I mention my aversion to snakes? I hate snakes. Every snake is a killer snake. Ex.:  If a snake frightens me into a heart attack, and I die, the snake killed me.  Every snake is a killer snake. 

Sweeping the autumn leaves from the porch area in the front of the house, exposed the evidence of a killer who tried to come in our house. 

Summoning the grand daughter to see the evidence, the first words out of her mouth, " I hope it didn't get IN the door!", left me with the sick realization that this could have happened!  Did I mention that I hate snakes? 

Asking her if she wanted the evidence brought a positive response, and since she was in the middle of preparing her lunch, I offered to bring "the evidence" in the house for her. Washing my hands up to the elbows afterwards, I saw another photo op staring at me.  This slitherin' creature exited it's skin in such a perfect way, the Eyes seemed to be glaring at me !  

Now, I really DO try to see the beauty in ALL of nature, and as difficult as this was, I cannot help but marvel at the delicate process of  The Shed !  


Dateline Nov 11,2013 ...

Massaging the yard into a place for meditation, relaxation, mini vacation, I was clearing some of the overgrowth of ferns, decomposed leaves, etc. On the backside of the shed, I discovered the perfect spot for a somewhat larger reptile to "shed his burden"... and then decided it was another opportunity for the "natural yard art" theme...   ...observe ...

I am certain this fellow, in his new digs, is watching the transformation of his untouched by human hands for the last three years jungle , and probably plotting my demise even as I post this to my blogspot.  In fact, after I finished my work for the day, I sat myself in the green chair in the center of these grand old oaks, just to feel the energy and force of nature. Maybe ten minutes or so into this relaxation moment, I turned to look over my left shoulder toward the sitting area behind these beautiful oaks, and looked straight into the eyes of a (raised his head) black racer ... who I am pretty sure if he had hands... would have been flipping this old lady off! 

Monday, September 30, 2013

When Plan A gets Trumped ... by plan B ...

...and Plan B Gets Cancelled ...

Go To ... Plan C !!!

Paddling again ! After seven years of absence from these back waters of Florida... like the first drink after a week in the desert ... satisfying .. nourishing.. and life sustaining. 

With this post I am sending you to another blog of this author for a photo journey of this past Thursday's Kayak adventure. Hope you enjoy it. 

http://dogs-n-blogs.blogspot.com/      Stories from Big Sur, CA to the Gulf Coast of Florida.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

Thursday, September 26, 2013

The REAL Mother ...

A Classic

...Makes a Mother Proud ...

I've been looking for this book for some time now. Thrift Stores ... Yard Sales ... book stores with used books .... with no success.  Today, while re-packing some of my (grown up)son's treasures for storage ... LO and BEHOLD !  I raised a brilliant man! This is a treasure he has stored for his daughter... a beautiful... bright... sensitive... funny ... did I say.. also brilliant like her Daddy? .. young 16 year old...  Some days are just awesome!

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

When You're Smiling ...when you're smiling ....

I can feel most of my face, upper lip, and cheeks again.  (Two hours since I left the dentist’s office, 4 hours since I sat in the chair for the fix… and although the discomfort of my upper lip being stretched over my head for working room still reminds me where I went this morning,)  I am doing the “new tooth” dance !!   Even having a high tolerance for pain cannot prevent some of the dental agony in the aftermath of a great sculptor.  But today, parting with nearly three hundred dollars total for this positive result, I am excited to be able to smile my toothy smile in public, laugh with my head tossed back, and make those “cheesy” faces when relating descriptive stories to friends and strangers.

Caught exposing the gap at Busch Gardens Tampa !

Earlier this summer, I walked into the kitchen to declare that I had sufficient evidence to argue that one should not brush their teeth. The gaping hole in the front row of my not so perfect teeth, and the last bit of the old filling in the palm of my hand.  Sporatic years of irregularly scheduled check - ups, cleanings, fillings and such is no substitute for consistent, daily diligence to my own hygiene. 

Fully owning the responsibility of my inactions for my dental practices, I am grateful for the technology and skill available now.  I recently learned that due to the political pressures for Americans to provide their own health insurance, there is a disappearing element. Any county, state or otherwise, free health clinics.  
As a result, I went searching for some reduced cost clinics and discovered one nearby.  The Family Health Centers of Southwest Florida Inc. You can check out their website at http://www.fhcswf.org/.  
While waiting for the full impact of the numbing injection, we made some inquiries about the FHC and learned that it is a non profit organization, with careful hiring practices to insure that the staff has the same work ethic and dedication to providing the best patient care as the individual who started this company nearly thirty years ago.  Without going all mushy or overstating an opinion, I just want to say here, that this organization seems to have a handle on blending the “old school” medical practices with current state of the art tools, and topping it all off with a friendly, courteous, knowledgeable, compassionate staff. KUDOS ! to The Family Health Centers of Southwest Florida ! 
... The Whole World Smiles !

Sunday, September 15, 2013

First Encounters .... A Journey of Trust

Tom and Darrell

The phone call came mid morning, a Saturday in October. "MJ, do you know of any very inexpensive place we could stay here in Memphis? Our return flight to L.A. is next Saturday, and the family made it clear we are not going to be staying with any of them."
(We knew Tom and Darrell were going to meet Darrell's family just outside of Memphis, hopefully to get answers and explanations for Darrell and more research for the book Tom was writing.)
Over thinking a situation has never been my strength... in fact just the opposite. Impulsive. That describes me... at least most of my life. Although I am practicing the art of procrastination in these more recent years.
So we determined they would stay in the motel for one more night, and hubby and I would drive to Beale Street and pick them up the next afternoon. 
Hubby spotted Darrell first. Standing outside the door of The Hard Rock Cafe.         

Tom had just stepped inside to check out the Tee shirts... for his collection... and left Darrell to watch for our arrival... explaining to Darrell that he would recognize me by my hair... long and white/gray. 

When hubby spoke Darrell's name as we approached, Darrell, mildly startled, turned to see who would know him on Beale Street at this time in his life, and immediately embraced the big stranger in a warm hug. Then turning to me, embraced with assurance, our friendship. Tom came out the door just in time to see this tender encounter, and got in on the hugs and greetings. 
That first five minutes grew into a week long sharing of love...laughter...fears... and dreams...plus a lifetime of loving friendship that is priceless. The details of some of this can be found in the book.

TRUST: belief that someone or something is reliable, good, honest, effective

In a world where a trip to the market can end tragically, trust is a thin leg to stand on when asking strangers for help. OR it can define the character of who you are. 

A sidebar to that first night in our home in Melbourne , Arkansas, a three hour drive from Memphis, where we spirited Tom and Darrell away from the world for one week. Once settled into bed for the night, I , in a very paranoid moment, voiced my concern to hubby. " What if they are some psychotic, crazed murderers, who come in during the night and bludgeon us to death... and NO ONE knows who they are, because we told NO ONE what we were doing... bringing strangers into our home for a week?"   Then with a nervous chuckle, he dismissed my thoughts as yes, paranoia, and we slept like babies. Now, the humor in all of this, is to tell you that, in their own little 'heaven in Melbourne', in the Funfinder RV in the yard, Tom and Darrell shared the same moment of fears about US !! 

Silhouette by the Light of a Supermoon

A Super Moon Night in New Smyrna Beach

What is a supermoon? The word supermoon didn’t come from astronomy. Instead, it came from astrology. Astrologer Richard Nolle of the website astropro.com takes credit for coining the term supermoon. In 1979, he defined it as:…a new or full moon which occurs with the moon at or near (within 90% of) its closest approach to Earth in a given orbit (perigee). In short, Earth, moon and sun are all in a line, with moon in its nearest approach to Earth.  http://earthsky.org/
Saturday,  June 22, 2013

Walking along the quiet shoreline in New Smyrna Beach, there came an incredible sense of power from the east. Turning to look over the peaceful Atlantic I saw the rising full moon and knew immediately that what I was experiencing came from this summer event.

Borrowing a quote from a blogspot I follow, http://helloworld420.blogspot.com/ ,  I became aware of the fact that turning on the light requires an action, or effort, to get the result. For me, I had to turn and see the light.

 "Happiness can be found even in the darkest of times, if one only remembers to turn on the light."

Albus Dumbledore - The Prisoner of Azkaban - J. K. Rowling


...the outline of a body viewed as circumscribing a mass (circumscribe : to surround by or as if by a boundary ) http://www.merriam-webster.com

Self Portrait

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Wondering if it's A Personal Plague ...

I get the feeling there is a message here ... but have yet to hear it clearly.  Frogs ... there is a "frog magnetic field" around my person. The following photos (taken by me) are of actual up close and personal events with these amphibians... just three of dozens over the years...
 Wiki...  http://www.wikipedia.org/      opens the "frog" page with this statement: Frogs are a diverse and largely carnivorous group of short-bodied, tailless amphibians composing the order Anura (Ancient Greek an-,without + oura, tail). The oldest fossil "proto-frog" appeared in the early Triassic of Madagascar, but molecular clock dating suggests their origins may extend further back to the Permian, 265 million years ago. 

So ... am I an ancient soul.. being sought after for reconnection? ... or do I look like a great meal for a jinourmous appetite? 

 The Sky is the Limit

 ...and the black button is where? 

...a zen moment in the Ozarks ...

Sunday, August 25, 2013

Weekly gatherings of local talent , great coffees and friends ... Mercer's Fresh Roasted Coffees in Charlotte Harbor ... oh yeah ....

Monday, August 19, 2013


He's Substantial
  Webster defines substance as  
1. essential nature  
 2. a fundamental or characteristic part or quality . 
Add these variables from Webster 
1. ultimate reality that underlies all outward
manifestations and change
2. practical importance
... and the implication is when anything is essential, it is necessary to the whole of something. 
... to me 

Sunday, January 6, 2013

Contributors corner; Gold coins

Gold Coins
(A Philosophy)
©2012 Bo Kirgis

     Ok, I'm going to ask everybody who reads this to indulge me for a moment. Just imagine, if you will, that every single living soul on this earth, (At present count, that would number OVER 7,000,000,000 PEOPLE! ….that's  7 BILLION!! ), were all standing around one enormous Crater in the ground. Now, imagine that this Crater was emitting the most awful, horrid cloud of noxious, lethal fumes. A killer gas that not only possessed the most nauseating stench possible but also killed it's victims in the most violently painful and horrific convulsions that you can picture in your mind. (Feel free to envision your worst nightmare here). And if we didn't stop it, it would kill EVERY LIVING THING!! Not only that, but, it wouldn't just kill proportionately, it would either kill ALL or NOTHING. No in-between. 

     So,.. what if the solution to avoid disaster was this simple. Every one of us had to throw 1 Gold Coin in the hole because gold was precisely the correct element to render the gas harmless and 7 billion was the appropriate number of coins required to fill the hole. Don't you think that it would be worth it to put in your share? What if you had hundreds of those Gold Coins. That would be pretty easy, huh? But, what if you only had 2 Gold Coins? Or maybe only 1 Gold Coin?! Wouldn't you think it was worth the sacrifice to give all you have to avert this immediate danger to you and your own. (Rewind to the horrified faces writhing in pain.)

     Well, what if the person next to you didn't have their 1 Gold Coin. Just to keep the gas from killing you and your loved ones, would you not be willing to throw in 2 Gold Coins? And, what if that person was from a different neighborhood than you. Or a different town, or state or country. What if they spoke different, or dressed different. What if they were taller than you? Or shorter? What if they were ugly or smelled bad, would they still be worthy of your genorosity. Ah, but what if that person next to you happened to be of another race or religion. Now what would you do? What if that person is a liar, a cheat, a thief, or a murderer. It wouldn't feel so easy then, would it! But we still have the same dilemma at hand. If the quota of Gold Coins isn't met, the gas is still going to kill ALL of us. Not just the undesirable people, but, YOU AND EVERY ONE YOU LOVE!!

     Alright now. Let's add another dimension of adversity to the mix. YOU DON'T HAVE YOUR GOLD COIN! Now what are you going to do? You can't just stand there and expect somebody to feel generous enough to cover you? Why would they? Why should they? Who are you? Where do you come from? You are not their responsibility.  You never did anything for them!…., Wait a minute,…. aren't you the one who ignored them when they asked for directions, or did you knowingly sell them that lemon of a car? Did you park in the handicap spot, because you're just that incredibly lazy and inconsiderate, which caused them an extra problem as they went grocery shopping in their wheelchair because they can't walk. Maybe you're the one who told that lie that got them fired because you wanted their job. Hey, aren't you the bully who used to terrorize them in school. Or was that you who stole that couples newborn baby girl so you could sell her for drug money. Were you the one who killed all those little children at the school because you "lost your mind". Whoa,.. I know who you are,… you're the one who once set a man on fire just because he was a homosexual! And YOU want ME to pay YOUR 1 Gold Coin?!?! 

     Moral decay is at an all-time high and is causing a cumulative effect of "bad begets bad". The "Crater" is every crappy thing that we've done in our lifetime. It's filled with all the bad things we've knowingly chosen to do. Every time we had a choice to do Right or Wrong and deliberately chose Wrong, we heaped more "stinkin' thinkin'" on the compost pile which festers and turns into the "Gas" which envelopes us all thereby causing everyone to make more bad choices, and so on, and so on. How many times have you heard "…well he did it", as if that was some kind of "get out of jail free" card. It's the snowball effect. One person drove 2 mph over the speed limit and got away with it, so this one drives 5 mph over and also gets away with it, so then everyone says "The cops just allow you 5 mph over." Now somebody chooses to push that limit and they're going 7 mph over, then 10, then faster and faster. Now being ILLEGAL is not an occasional exception, it's THE RULE. Now doing things in defiance of those in authority is the standard that we operate under instead of recognizing the fact that laws were NOT made just to inconvenience folks. They were made for the purpose of protecting people from those who make bad choices
     Now, as for the "1 Gold Coin". Every deliberate act of choosing Right over Wrong equals 1 Gold Coin. You see, the truth is, every one of us has an unlimited stash of Gold Coins. We can pull out a Gold Coin any time we want simply by making a choice to do Right. Some choices seem like insignificant little "good deeds" in their importance and some are obviously monumental tasks but they all count. Some of us easily recognize the difference between Right and Wrong and smartly spend their Gold Coin on something that will reap a greater benefit than just some immediate self gratification. They think of it as something far too valuable to waste and they try to buy a better future for all. Some folks aren't as automatically capable of seeing the difference between Right and Wrong, but once it's pointed out to them, they too will have the ability to choose to spend their Gold Coins in a way that's good for everyone. If there seems to be several choices at one time, then we just have to try even harder to see as many of the possibilities of Right and Wrong as we can. That would require working together as a team so that everyones choices have been considered and no ONE person or group gets all the benefit and others get the shaft. 

     I know that some who read this will cheer or applaud this concept but you are the choir. Thank you for your support but your not the ones who need to be educated.  Some who read this will scoff and snarl something like "Oh shut up ya whiney do-gooder. You always have to take the fun out of everything." Well, I would say to you, "If the way that you choose to have fun causes someone else pain or grief, THEN YOU ARE THE PROBLEM! ". And some will read this analogy and say, "Wow, I never thought of it that way before". To you I say, "I believe life could be wonderful for everyone. Not just a select few. Treasure your choices. They are your future. They are your Gold Coins. Invest them wisely"!