Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Tuesday, April 30, 2013

Let's Talk Chicken!

After being in the ER with my husband from 3AM to 5AM this morning, I find myself in rare form. Ever been so tired you become 'punchy'? Everything you see, everything you say seems funny and you laugh at the silliest things almost to the point of hysteria like running on high from too much caffeine. That's me today and would you believe it led to the topic of conversation being chicken. I know what you are thinking...why chicken? I say, Why not chicken? 

I was once informed you KNOW you are getting old when the topic of conversation becomes bowel movements. I do NOT want to go there so this discussion will remain on the topic of chicken. Whew! Yeah! Thought you would agree.

Embrace the Past...

So, where are we heading with this 'chicken talk'? Maybe we should first take a look at the background of the chicken. Which came first, the chicken or the egg? "The chicken, no the egg, no the chicken, no the egg!" has reverberated throughout history creating probably the most debated question of all time
A chick hatching from an egg Source:en.wikipedia.org

So, whilst the video yields the conclusion of the egg being first, do you agree or disagree? What is the logic behind the basis of your reasoning?

Empower the Present... 

Regardless of which came first, we are now in a world where the chicken, domestic chicken that is, rules the roost. There are more chickens than any other domesticated bird on Earth, which makes it so far down the list of endangered species there is no need to worry. 

With that worry out of the way, we can rest assured there will be enough chickens for decades to come to be casseroled, crocked, crusted, baked, BBQed, boiled, braised, broiled, fingered, fricasseed, fried, grilled, nuggeted, pied, roasted, rotisseried, rubbed, saladed, sandwiched, sauced, sauteed, seared, stir-fried, stuffed and served just about any way we like it. 

Now, I ask you... 

Enrich the Future...

Raise more chickens! Why you may ask? They are not endangered, in fact, their numbers are massive. Here ya' go...the latest scoop...
Chickens may start losing sleep over more than Americans’ love of McNuggets. Chicken consumption in the US creates over six billion pounds of feathers each year. Previously discarded as waste, researchers at the University of Delaware are developing an innovative way to put all that wasted plumage to use — as fuel to power hydrogen fuel cell vehicles. If this technology was implemented in a fuel cell vehicle, it would cost about $200, as opposed to using carbon nanotube tanks (which cost about $5.5 million) or metal hydrides (which cost about $30,000).
Source: Chicken Feathers May Fuel Hydrogen Cars in the Future
Good night, all and sweet dreams... buck,buck,,,,, buck,,, buckAHHHH; brrk, brroock, broock, brk-ooock; bwwaaaaaaaaaaaakkkkk and bock,bock,bock,bock,bock,begowwwwk! 

NO! I did not make the sounds as I typed or did I

Related articles:

Which came first, the chicken or the egg? http://www.word-detective.com/howcome/chickenoregg.html

Finally answered, Which came first, the chicken or the egg? http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/animals/stories/finally-answered-which-came-first-the-chicken-or-the-egg

The answers to two very important questions http://raaniyork.wordpress.com/2012/07/21/the-answers-to-two-very-important-questions/#comment-2836


MORE on the All-American Diner

Meet Miss Mendon: Classic Diner of Distinction 

by Marilyn Armstrong

Miss Mendon was born on the drawing board at the Worcester Dining Car Company in 1950 in Worcester, Massachusetts. Over the next 63 years, she did considerable traveling until she found her way to Mendon, the heart of New England‘s Blackstone Valley.
In her current incarnation, she is Miss Mendon, having begun as Miss Newport. She has been repainted, re-tiled, given an expanded dining area and a new kitchen. She’s had a long life and seen hard times, but despite everything, she has survived with grace and character.

She was assigned number 823 although she was actually the 623rd dining car built after Worcester Dining Cars began numbering dining cars using 200 as the base number.

She debuted on May 16, 1950. She is very much the same as she has always been. Her layout is unchanged from its original design. Her new owners modernized her a bit and added dining space along the side. 

She sports a professional kitchen.
The seats have been re-chromed, cleaned and restored. Miss Mendon looks as if she was built just yesterday She’s open for business serving good food to the people of the Valley.

You can visit her at 16 Uxbridge Rd, Mendon, MassachusettsShe is open for your dining pleasure every day from 6 AM to 10 PM. 

An American icon lives on...

Article/Photo credit: Marilyn Armstrong, author of The 12-Foot Teepee
You can visit Marilyn at her blog, Serendipity, where you will be enlightened by her writing, nature, photography, history, arts, nostalgia, humor and so much more!

Saturday, April 27, 2013

The All-American Diner

A classic of classics, like baseball, hotdogs, apple pie and Chevrolet...that's the all-American diner! Often epitomized with an exterior of stainless steel, the diner is unique in its architecture. Then, of course, there is the interior: a casual atmosphere, a counter, stools and service area along a back wall.  

The Rosebud Diner, top right photo, is a restored 1941 Worcester Lunch Car #773, as it appeared in 2012. Somerville, MA

The Bendix Diner, lower right photo, in Hasbrouck Heights, New Jersey, is an example of Art Deco style and neon signage.

Photo credit: wikipedia.org

But, how did it all get started and by whom?

Embrace the Past... How did diners begin?

Walter Scott, a part-time pressman and type compositor in Providence, Rhode Island, founded the first diner. It all started around 1858 with Scott supplementing his income by selling sandwiches and coffee from a basket. Newspaper night workers welcomed the services and by 1872, he had developed a very lucrative business. So much so, he quit his printing work and sold food at night from a horse-drawn covered express wagon parked outside the Providence Journal newspaper office. Walter Scott unknowingly inspired the birth oif what would become one of America's most recognized icons -- the diner

Empower the Present... Are diners still around today?

The interest in the American Diner continues today. Just ask Guy Fieri of Drive-ins, Diners and Dives! A significant number of vintage diners have been rescued from demolition and relocated to new sites in the United States and Europe. Manufacturers of diner structures are experiencing new orders or remodeling projects in a retro style. 

Photo credit: Marilyn Armstrong, author of The 12-Foot Teepee
You can visit Marilyn at her blog, Serendipity, where you will be enlightened by her writing, nature, photography, history, arts, nostalgia, humor and so much more!

Enrich the Future... How can the diner be preserved?

Since diners became a part of the American landscape more than 100 years ago, the culture has been affected in many ways. The influence of lunch wagons and diners have touched almost every aspect of life including cooking, dining out, popular culture, design, fashion and so much more. 

"A recommendation from the American Diner Museum is to help preserve diners by keeping them in business. Whenever possible visit a diner to share a meal and conversation with others." Once you do you will find yourself coming back over and over again!

Have you visited a diner? If so, when and where?

Friday, April 26, 2013

Celebrate Neighbor Day, Saturday, April 27

What has happened to our sense of community? Is being a good neighbor out of style, gone with the wind, incognito? Has technology completely engulfed communication to the point that face-to-face, person-to-person, is slowly becoming a thing of the past? Instead of talking across a fence in one's own backyard, the sounds of conversation have become "tweet, tweet, tweets" and they are not coming from the birds!

Before going any further, what does it mean to be a good neighbor? Do you have to live right next door to someone in order to be a neighbor? Because of the diversity of the English language -- one word having two different meanings, two different words carrying the same meaning, or one word with multiple meanings -- neighbor can sometimes be synonymous with brother or sister, but not in the sense of being related. 

For purposes of today's celebration, let's examine common definitions of the word neighbor. Notice the emphasis on #3 and #4.

neigh·bor  (nbr)
1. a person who lives near another.
2. a person, place or thing that is adjacent to or located near another.
3. one's fellow human being.
4. a person who shows kindliness toward fellow humans.
5. (used as a term of address, esp. in greeting a stranger).
Ah-h-h! I see. If you are human, you are considered a neighbor to another human. That makes us all neighbors, that is, those of us who consider ourselves of the human race. In other words, being a neighbor means being kind one to another. Is that so hard to understand? Not really. Is that difficult to carry out? Shouldn't be.

Embrace the Past...

The source of the word, neighbor, was a compound of two words meaning "near" and "dweller, especially a farmer" making a neighbor a "near dweller." This being taken as a literal notion would mean in today's society, one might have many neighbors whom one does not know at all, a situation that would have been highly unlikely in the early days. In times past, survival was often dependent upon neighbor helping neighbor. Many people could have been called from miles and miles around without any prior knowledge of the family other than they were a family in need.

Empower the Present...

How long has it been since you borrowed a cup of sugar or delivered a plate of cookies to a neighbor or simply initiated a random act of kindness? Perhaps you have never done this. While April 27 is not designated as a national day of celebration, does that make it any less important? Not in the least. Produce a ripple effect and on this day be a good neighbor, greet and meet that person or persons face-to-face! Lend a helping hand wherever that hand is needed.

Enrich the Future...

Make this day a tradition. Mark it on your calendars. It is not impossible to be a neighbor to your fellow humans nor is it ever too late to become a good neighbor. 
Where does the celebration take place? Everywhere. 

What does it mean to you to be a good neighbor? Let me hear from you...

Thursday, April 25, 2013

Thank You, Soldiers!

Awakenings honors our soldiers, past, present and future...without them, America would not be the America as we know it today. Next time you see a soldier, shake his/her hand and express how much you appreciate the services performed and sacrifices endured by each and every one. They are the life's blood of American freedom!

Honor, respect and support the
United States of America military! 


Walk among the Wild Flowers
A soldier’s life far from home is a lonely life in the sense of family ties and times. It encompasses dreams of one day returning to the life and loved ones left behind.
My journey home was a walk alone
A knapsack upon my back—
My only companion
Days were long and nights were cold
Tattered clothes, laceless boots—
My wardrobe companion
Memories kept my will alive
Belief in my only rightful love—
My true companion
Plans remained deep-rooted in my mind
Clear visions of future anticipations—
My crystal companion
Darkness succumbed to daylight
Dawn of a new day for me—
My faithful companion
Wounds were deep, blood visible
Faith in a better tomorrow—
My healing companion
Desire to live and see you again subsisted
Hope to walk among the wild flowers—
My constant companion

©2013 Awakenings
Sharla Lee Shults