July Playlist

Hello!

How are you doing?

Since COVID-19 came to town, everything you loved about summer has been modified either in a small or bigger way than you expected! It has affected everyone; people hoped it would be done by the time 4th of July came around, but it didn’t and because of that, cities cancelled their annual fairs and displays of large populated areas to watch fireworks in the evenings.

Thankfully, music is still here for us!

I am actually going to do something a little different today. Before I give you my current list of Top 20 songs for the month, I am going to share a brand new track from a singer-songwriter ÊMIA! She messaged me a few months ago, but there have various things going on and we have both been awful about getting back in our emails to each other. However, I finally had time to get everything straighten out enough to be able to promote her new single “Selfish” off of her debut album that is coming soon!


emiajulyplÊMIA is a singer-songwriter and producer (yay for more female producers!) based in New York. In her first email she sent me and said that I might enjoy her music because she is similar to SCVRINA, which pretty much sold me right away! She’s been known to write her songs with as much emotions as possible.

Here is what I thought of her new song!

When I first listened to the song, I did think she sounds like SCVRINA in that soft voice but her tone is what I found to be quite sassy and almost angry tone, which you don’t find too often along with an upbeat pop song! Everyone tries but rarely does it work as good as you think it would! She also reminded me of Madison Beer too, as she has this fierce cat-like type of mood in her music that I love so much! The only thing I didn’t like so much was the music. However, I think if she was to release an acoustic version I would like it better. The tempo would slow down slightly and you would be able to hear the words and feelings towards the subject in question a little more too!  

What do you think of ÊMIA’s new song “Selfish?” 


I don’t know if this will become a trend on here, but I think highlighting a song like this by an artist or band that nobody’s heard before, could be an interesting addition to these monthly playlists. What do you think?

Now let’s go back to our normal routine. If you want to check out the rest of the songs not listed below, you can (hopefully) click here to be transferred to listen to the others. Here are my Top 20 songs in July!

Daisies by Katy Perry
The Game Is Over by Evanescence
Like That by Doja Cat featuring Gucci Mane
My Immortal by Halocence
Control by Zoe Wees
Drinks by Cyn
I Dare You by Kelly Clarkson
Rewind by Krewella x Yellow Claw
Only God Knows by Of Kings & Country featuring Echosmith
Love Me Anyway by P!nk featuring Chris Stapleton

Now usually, I have a much longer amount of songs featured in this playlist and I do, but they are not regular songs! Earlier this month I was able to watch Hamilton. I have been hearing and loving what everyone has been saying about it for the past several years! And of course, I had my favorites too, so here are my top 10 that I just couldn’t get enough to keep to myself!

Satisfied
My Shot
You’ll Be Back
Helpless
What’d I Miss
The Room Where It Happens
Burn
It’s Quiet Uptown
Who Lives, Who Dies, Who Tells Your Story
One Last Time

Before I finish I wanted to let you know there will be a specie music post next Monday! So, please be on the lookout for that. I’m sorry this turned out to be so long but I couldn’t help myself to limiting the amount of music I listened to this month. Before you leave, please tell me what you were loving this month in the comments section below!

snowflake

 

Life Lately | Detox For 10 Days!

Howdy!

Hope you’re all doing well out there!

April was an interesting month for me. It was suppose to lead into a great adventure up north for my nana’s birthday, but thanks to the Coronavirus, we, like everybody else’s plans, were cancelled. Honestly, I thought weather would be the main reason we couldn’t go, so this wasn’t necessarily on my radar, but I had somewhat prepared myself for this kind of outcome; so, I wasn’t overly excited or disappointed when it came around.

The other thing was the huge detox I was forcibly to experience at the beginning of the month. My mom and I were in agreement that our internet service turning off our Wi-Fi in a middle of the epidictic was absolutely stupid! Thank god I am not in school anymore or I would have panicked. We had to wait over 10 days or so until someone was sent out to come fix our connection. Like I told my mom on the 3rd, “I don’t know if I should feel bad for the person on the other line” because my dad was basically shouting at how awful this is!

All wasn’t lost though, I was still able to use both my laptop and tablet for other things. I could still write out drafts, play Spider Solitaire, read my books, and organize the many, many lists of baby names on both electronics. (EDIT: I didn’t organize the baby names!) So, I had a lot more pros, than cons and I was okay with that! The one thing I was mildly upset about was the fact I couldn’t post my “Three Good Things” online, but I could work on them for the days I am missing and once I came back, I would upload the posts.

On the day I chose to write this post, which was day 2, we were experiencing another beautiful day of spring weather. It’s nice to see our trees in bloom again. Our neighbors have two dogwood trees in front of their house and I love it when they turn white at the ends. In a matter of days, they’ll change colors again and become a nice dark green and stay that way until the start of fall. It is also really awesome to see our front yard growing in grass after little over a year since we tore down our old house and dad had to put straw all over the large space. The few strands that remain are being taken by the birds as they are building their nests in the nearby trees.

The day before we were greeted with a sweet surprise in our mail. We received a cute drawing from my little nephew! My sister and brother-in-law sent a folded piece of paper of their traced hands and there were some parts to make it extra special, Nolan got to draw on it too! When my mom came home from work, she showed it to me and I almost broke out in tears because it was absolutely adorable!

A few hours later, I thought it would awesome to send them something back. In February, my mom bought Nolan a Mickey Mouse coloring book for a $1. We have a lot of pages where there’s lines of purple and blue (colors that he knows the most!) and everybody else attempting to stay inside the portrait of Mickey and his buddies! I thought it would be a great idea if we could do a page and send it to him in the mail. Once I made the announcement, my mom grabbed the book and Ziploc bag of crayons from the living room where we have his lunchbox full of Hot Wheels and the larger cars underneath the light stand. She put them inside my bookcase closest to my bed so that if I wasn’t too busy, I could work on it throughout the day.

I actually sat back towards the wall on my bed, a place where I like to sit and read my books, and I had to push away all (5!) of my blankets to the end of my bed to make enough room to pull this off without causing me too much pain. To make sure I didn’t suffer, I took more breaks than I usually give myself, so by the time I finished the page I was actually comfortable in my placement.

And of course, I had to show off my footwork (haha!) and sent a text of my masterpiece to my mom. I decided to do a simple design just in case it would cause me too much pain and/or if I messed up, I could switch to another one. I knew he would enjoy a Mickey page than any of the other characters. I just hope he wouldn’t mind if Aunt Megz does the maze page in the book? I am a sucker for mazes!

By the time this goes live, I would hope to God I have my internet back and everything is right again! I’ll live if it doesn’t but damn if I have to wait longer than the 10 days we were told, I might be the one yelling at the poor soul who decides to answer the call!

UPDATE: I went without using any Wi-Fi for like five to six days before my mom let me use her phone every once in a while. It was actually harder for her to stay away for like five minutes! After day four though, I was actually counting how much longer I’d have to be without it.

Do you schedule in the amount of time you want to be without your phone, Wi-Fi, etc? What do you do to detox from your electronics?

snowflake

Coronavirus | When Does The Cycle End?

I wasn’t going to talk about this. I didn’t want to be another echo in a steady line of chatter, but I have realized two things about this Coronavirus madness. If this panedemic has taught us anything, it is that we truly are as human beings are only concerned about ourselves and the cliche phrase “history repeats itself” rings true to our new reality.

Before I get too far, I should mention that I hardly watch the news. Honestly, I don’t have to, social media is doing its best that it is plastered in every newsfeed, tweet, and vlog. I understand the panic and worry over your financials; I may be a disabled, but I’m not an idiot! I feel for every person who is sick in the hospital forced away from their families and the ones who are upset about the fact that everything is being cancelled.

For the past two days, I have been going through our DVR watching documentaries that I had piled up for a number of weeks. The two I want to talk to you were broadcast on PBS and a part of it’s American Experience program.

The first was about the outbreak of Influenza in 1918-19. I knew from the time it started it was an older episode because of the quality of color on the screen. It was talking to people who were infected or had members of their own family and possibly friends that were diagnosed with it and died.

It featured a lot of elderly people talk about their childhoods before and after the sickness creped into their cities and towns. What really pulled me in was when the narrator explained that it didn’t start with children and their weak immune systems. Instead it was the soldiers in the army camps that were being taken out first. You have to remember that at the time, World War I was going on and the need for young and healthy men were desperately needed to help fight the cause overseas.

Unfortunately, the war wasn’t the only killing machine out there. When Influenza appeared in the spring of 1918, there is a possibility that 500 million people worldwide came down with the deadly virus. Once the war was over, the men who came home were “healthy” to the naked eye but the disease lingered in their bodies to spread into their families and friends who were happy as clams to have their loved one back. All of a sudden the happiness was shattered when more and more people were being knocked down by the symptoms of the virus. The world was put on pause, and businesses and whole families were put on lockdown.

At this time, radio was the only way people could have contact with the outside. There was no TV for young children who were either bored or sick in their beds. They got by with doing chores, schoolwork, and played with their siblings in their rooms. To me, it is a surprise the stock market didn’t crash when the virus showed up because nobody would go anywhere. They were too afraid to!

Even though mainstream medicine was popular in the homes of American people, some could be superstitious and say that God was punishing them for their sins. Satan was there to claim every single person affected with the influenza. However, like with most sicknesses, as quickly as it came in, it disappeared! It had ended just in time as World War I was over and soldiers stationed in Europe were allowed to return to their homes again. Everyone was back to their old selves like nothing ever happened.

coronavirus news on screen
Photo by Markus Spiske on Pexels.com

The next morning I woke up, had breakfast and started watching my second documentary, this time it was about polio. Since this epidemic happened in the 1950’s, the talk about it was discussed a little bit more compared to the influenza outbreak. I heard it through both sides of my grandparents when I was younger. I never heard much talk about it while I was a teen and honestly neither one were discussed in school. You would hear someone talk about a fraction of what happened and that was pretty much it.

So, when I saw American Experience was going to re-air the episode about polio or infantile paralysis I knew it would keep me entertained for the lack of a better word.

Where the influenza had been affecting anyone from the ages to 20 to under 50, polio began to infect children the most. Adults were also struck with it too, such as future President of the United States, Franklin Delano Roosevelt or FDR for short. He was the one that everyone talked about in my family. I think it was to possibly show me that at one time we had a disabled President.

Anyways, the program was focused more on the relationship with FDR and his friend Basil O’Connor. He was put in charge of running the President’s fund and resort for more research done on polio. As influenza came and went fairly quickly, polio dragged on and on, infecting as many people as it could at various ages. Polio was known for headaches, dizziness, and eventually the loss of movement, which explains the technical term ‘infantile paralysis’.

If you have ever watched the episode of The Waltons, where their mother becomes diagnosed with polio. In the beginning you see this strong young woman become affected by a dark shadow one day. She could no longer control her arms or legs. She could no longer go outside by herself because it made her unable to walk or do anything by herself. This was common to everyone who had it. They could be permanent paralyzed and at the mercy of their families for support. Although for Mrs. Walton regained the usage of her body at the end of the show.

After Basil O’Connor met Jonas Salk, he began to look into the science behind this nasty curse. In 1953, it was announced that Dr. Salk had discovered the source of the problem and gave treatment on a number of people to test it. A year later it was said that the vaccine had worked and they moved to have it be given to everyone in America. Forty-four years later, it was said that polio had became extinct

Yet here we are again, in our own crisis, dealing with a brand new illness with really no end in sight.

History will continue to repeat itself over and over, to show us what we need to see again. When each sickness rolled into town, people seemed to be kind and stayed at home. They followed quarantine rules and religiously practiced social distancing, so to not affect anybody else with the virus. So, as we keep modern day Americans, Italians, English, etc keep gathering together for fun, we are only making everything worse.

I know you’re bored. I live at home, and rarely get to go out when the air is clear. It’s been over two weeks since I have seen my sister, brother-in-law and little nephew. Yes, I have seen and talked to them on FaceTime, but I love being face-to-face with people. So I ask you to please do everything you can to help eradicate this new virus, so we can go back to our normal lives and forget about it just like our ancestors did before us.

Thank you!

snowflake

Book Review: “Women Of Scotland: A Journey Through History” by Helen Susan Swift

Howdy!

Recently I was scrolling through new free books on Amazon and I came across this little beauty. It is called Women Of Scotland: A Journey Through History by Helen Susan Swift. I am prone to love books directed towards women and their everyday lives, and it doesn’t matter on the time period, I just like to learn what they were up to; so when I read the description of this, I became even more curious to learn about them.

I actually wasn’t going to do this review, but I wanted a nice get way to talk about my reason to why I decided to read this book. I just figured I could kill two birds with one stone! So, let’s get started with my explanation and ultimately talk about why I enjoyed this, but still gave it three stars on Goodreads.


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A historical survey of Scotswomen from earliest times to the 21st century. This book looks the huge number of women who have been the driving force behind this small but dynamic nation from the dark ages to the present day. As well as warriors and scientists, fish wives, seawomen, the factory workers and authors are included.

taken from Goodreads.


For Christmas, my dad received the AncestryDNA kit. He’s always talked about doing it, but is really paranoid about these things. However, once he did it, it was like he was a kid again, all excited and giddy with every new notification. It was so adorable!

He has known about the Scottish and Welsh roots, but wasn’t really sure about the percentage. Once the results were ready, he found out that he a greater amount of both heritages but with the addition of Irish, British and Germanic, which we are still unsure about anyways, so if you know this means, please explain it to me so I can tell him too!

For me, I have always felt more Irish than Scottish and that was the big reason why I decided to get this book, because I thought maybe it would inspire me to accept this easier. In the beginning, it really helped and I was even saying to my mom, “these are my ancestries and I am descended from these strong women!” So, it became a great investment in both ways as my dad was discovering his family tree and I was learning more about the history of Scottish women.

*****

I feel like I should mention that I got this, a little bit before he received his results back. So, whether or not he was right about his family folklore (because we found out another tall tale was wrong!) I think I would have continued to read it. I say “I think” because there were some chapters that were incredibly boring…

Since this book was about women, the author really dug deep and found some extraordinary women and girls to discuss in each section. We start off learning about the Romans, Vikings invading early Britton. As it continues talking about the Celts and their ways, like how they revered the women from their beauty to rules of marriage, divorce, and ownership over lands.

One story in particular that I remember in a chapter was about Lady Devorgilla. The name differs but the way Helen used was “Devorgilla” so that’s how I’ll call her. I don’t really remember much, because of the amount of other’s stories I learned while reading, but she was the mother of a King of Scotland. She created a college located in Oxford (Balliol College), an Abbey called “Sweetheart Abbey”, and a notable bridge called Devorgilla Bridge.

One interesting fact that I just adored was that even though she was betrothed to her husband John Balliol from a young age, she clearly loved him dearly! After he passed away, she commissioned an Abbey to be made so she and the nuns could endlessly pray for her husband’s soul. She apparently had his heart embalmed and locked away in a casket so she had a piece of him every day and night. This is why the name of the Abbey, is “Sweetheart Abbey”.

There were a lot of individual stories included in the book. Since it literally goes in order of history, you have many tales of medieval royal women. She does talk about Mary, Queen of Scots, but tries not to dedicate too much time to her which I liked a lot because I hope to read a book dedicated to her only. However, there were also just ordinary women included too. Some who maybe made a name for themselves outside of Scotland.

As you come to the 19th and 20th Century chapters, you will learn about women who did not abide by the rules of the time. They traveled all around the world like the men of the time. One by the name of Helen Gloag was an regular young women wanting to explore new worlds but her boat was captured by pirates and was forced to change course to Morocco.

At the point, the sexes would be separated, while the men were killed the women on the ship were sold as slaves and she was brought to the ruler, Sultan Sidi Mohammid ibn Abdullah. He obviously liked her unique features and took her in and eventually married her, thus becoming an Empress of Morocco.

The chemistry between them must been mutual as they had two sons and she was able to write to her family back in Scotland about her new home. She was also able to persuade the Sultan to release any person captured by the pirates that came into their kingdom. When her husband died, she was removed of her place and title as one of the Sultan’s older sons had his younger half brothers killed and there’s a possibility that Helen lived the reminder of her life in exile as she disappears from history afterwards.

These women were wonderful to learn about, but I did give a three star rating on my Goodreads profile for a reason. It was because there were like four or five chapters in a row that discussed how women dealt with life as a peasant I guess, and I do feel awful about this. I really didn’t like the discussion about how women were treated during the times of war, although learning that some wives and entire families would flock among the camps of soldiers! Imagine bringing in a new baby to an actual war zone?! The other part was when we got into the lives of fisherwomen and working in the salt mines. It just wanted to drag on and on, but I am glad I continued though.

A part of me thinks this is a great book full of references a person could use if they are after a Women’s Studies degree. It has a lot of material that could be useful for feminists, as it talks about the Scottish suffragettes in the later chapters. It could also be a great motivational book, as it really helped influence me into thinking I am a strong woman myself, and since I am descended through many of these different women and their histories, I definitely felt influenced but loved as well.

Have you read “Women In Scotland” by Helen Susan Swift yet? If you have, what were your thoughts about it? Did you have any favorite stories too?

snowflake

Blogmas | Christmas Tree Ornaments

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Howdy!

Before I start on this, I am leaving my previous Blogmas post about my Christmas tree because if you haven’t read it yet or this is your first time on here, you can get caught up on why I have adopted a very interesting way to do my tree this year.

For today though, I am discussing my process of both the ornaments and the way I took the pictures, because that in itself was a big production that some people might find enjoyable! Fun fact: I am one of those people! 

  The Ornaments  

I feel the need to mention that the day I finished writing my previous post about my tree, my whole original theme of white lights, purple bulbs, and a star on top, kind of went out the window since my mom could not find anything to match that scheme. However, my dad did say something about going to Dollar General and getting things there. So, one morning I went on the DG website and looked over their very limited holiday decorations and found two that I actually loved, and they were: a pair of angel wings that came in two colors on the site, gold and red. I really fell in love with the red ones. The other one I just couldn’t get over was the crown. If you know me well, you know I need anything royalty and I thought for this reason would be no different!

Later that day, my mom went to the store and came home with an interesting sort of things for me. She got me a box of array silver ornaments. There are the normal shiny ones but my favorites are really the glittery and matte bulbs the most. Unfortunately, they didn’t have their hooks on them already so that was a bummer, but I managed to put two of them on the tree myself before letting mom take over! Now, you’re probably wondering about the two I found online. Did we have any luck in that department? Well, I’m happy to say, she found both of them! There was a setback though, she found the wings only in silver.

This wasn’t what freaked us out though. When I saw them online, they looked pretty smell, almost the same size of the other ones she got me. No… The wings and crown are huge! We couldn’t believe it! Honestly the crown is the perfect size but the wings just look obnoxious! This wasn’t the funny thing though, because both of my parents thought it would look great as the topper, but every time I look at it, I think it looks like a vagina! I literally thought of the episode of Everybody Loves Raymond, when Marie takes an art class and the sculpture she presents to her family, looks just like a vagina. The wings are basically in the same shape but with a bigger opening in the middle, so when my mom placed it at the top of my tree, it just looked very wrong. I mean, I’m all for my Christmas tree being non-traditional, but I have to draw the line somewhere!

I managed to talk my mom into putting the wings lower on the tree, but as much as I had my heart on a star on the top, I kind of thought the crown would look better there instead. It took some convincing on my part because my mom was very adamant about the vagina–I mean, the wings on top–but it does fit on there nicely. As far as decorations on my tree, this is about it. My mom did find me some lights too, but the cord was white and since the tree isn’t as full like others, it looked a bit chaotic but all is not lost, because my mom came up with another idea for them. I don’t even know what prompt this, but she just started wrapping them around my curtain rod on both sides and it actually looks amazing with my sunflower curtain! Thankfully, the lights don’t generate too much heat that I can actually leave them on all day and night. They make my room look really cozy!

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  The Process Of The Pictures  

Now that we have that part out of the way, I can talk to you about how I managed to take the photos for this blog post. I will say, it was not easy, but honestly any post that requires a lot of pictures is usually pretty difficult anyways! Between the fact that I am always adjusting myself to get the ‘perfect’ shot and basically trying not to pop out of my wheelchair and land butt (or worse, back) first on the hardwood floor, isn’t the best thing in the world. Thankfully, I can say I did not hurt myself too awful that day – I did sleep like a baby that night so I took that as a good sign!

For the first round of photos, I used my Kodak digital camera I got last Christmas. I thought the pictures turned out really good the last time so I tried it out for this part, but since I was working with higher angles, I was having a lot of difficulty keeping the camera steady enough. I was able to get a few of the ornaments in their places, so that was nice, but for the rest I switched to my tablet.

Now, I will say that I would only use this as a last resort, because they weren’t in the best quality. I think the culprit for this was because it was too dark in my room. I have become dependent on the flash and since I didn’t have enough lighting, they might not look the greatest but I honestly loved how they turned out for some odd reason. Besides this, I used something else to help make everything easier for me. My nana and papaw had this foot stool that they inherited from the aunts, and I use this to prop up my tablet to color and read. However, I hadn’t thought about using it as a tripod until that day. It took me a good hour and a half to arrange it in certain ways to get the shots I wanted, because when it comes to blog photography, I am incredibly picky! We were successful though, or at least I’ll found out if any of you send me comments about them after reading this post.

The last thing I would like to do, is find this large bag of classic Christmas heirlooms my nana gave me a couple of years ago. I think they would look awesome surrounding the tree. It would complete the whole thing I think. If we find them, I’ll update you about it on Instagram and Facebook!

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What was the meaning for your Christmas tree theme? Do you have any funny ornament stories you would like to share with me? For anybody with a disability, does it normally take you a while to get everything just right? What do you use to make things easier?

snowflake