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.

Saturday, January 31, 2015


Today in Music History: February 1

45mph might seem more familiar than 45rpm with that determination, of course, being dependent upon in which era you grew up. From about 1949 - 1990, the former "LP" (Long Play) records replaced by a smaller size format allowed for longer playing time in jukeboxes because they took up less space.  More records. More music.

RCA 7-inch 45 rpm fine-grooved vinyl record

The 45 had the same smaller-sized groove as the LP, and the center hole was larger. 45s became popular in jukeboxes, which had previously used 78s, because 45s took up less space and you could fit more songs in the box. Suddenly jukes went from offering 24 or 40 songs on 78s to having 100 to 200 songs on 45s. 45s are also made of vinyl rather than shellac, and can hold up to about 5 minutes of music on each side. 45s are still being made in limited quantities for jukebox operators who have not upgraded to newer CD jukeboxes, so you can still get some of the latest releases on 45. [Source: history-of-rock.com]

On this day in...
1949 RCA Records issued the first ever 45rpm single, the invention of this size record made jukeboxes of the 20th century possible.

Initially playing music recorded on wax cylinders, the shellac 78 rpm record dominated jukeboxes in the early part of the 20th century. The Seeburg Corporation introduced an all 45 rpm vinyl record jukebox in 1950, leading to the 45 rpm record becoming the dominant jukebox media for the last half of the 20th century. 33⅓-R.P.M., C.D.s, and videos on DVDs were all introduced and used in the last decades of the century. MP3 downloads, and Internet-connected media players came in at the start of the 21st century. The jukebox's history has followed the wave of technological improvements in music reproduction and distribution.

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...

Somethin' Good's Happenin'

      Super 1st!                                                                                 A Heavenly Day 

National Baked Alaska Day 

Vanilla, Chocolate, Butterscotch Baked Alaska (Recipe) 
Baked Alaska is this wonderful ice cream cake concoction that seems easy, but actually isn’t because ice cream makes you nervous and you get scared it’s going to melt before you finish and then you can’t get the ice cream out of the bowl and you anticipate a pending disaster and then the oven wants to burn the hell out of your ice cream cake at the bottom. Oh, is that just me? So says The Footie Patootie...
A Bit of 'Baked Alaska' History...
We have American physicist Benjamin Thompson to thank for discovering how to make meringue back in the early 1800′s! For meringue is a key component of Baked Alaska (recipe), the spotlighted dish being celebrated on Baked Alaska Day!

This sweet treat was named by the chef at the famous New York Delmonico’s Restaurant in 1876 to celebrate America’s acquisition of its new territory. Its lesser known name of Norwegian Omelette also gives tribute to this dessert’s characteristic appearance of a cold, snow covered mountain. Enjoy!

Working Naked Day (No naked pictures, sorry!)

As its name suggests, Working Naked Day is the day in which you carry out the day’s work unclothed (hopefully at home). It should be hastily mentioned that this does NOT mean that you turn up at your workplace stark naked – rather, the whole point is that the day celebrates the act of working from home and the freedom that results from this situation. If you are still shy, then bear in mind that the day can be celebrated by wearing pajamas.

Take Your Child to the Library Day
Image Source: flickr.com
After all, February IS Library Lovers Month. Take your child to the library and you will feed their imagination! A love of reading and books starts with pictures, stories and rhymes which even the youngest child can enjoy; Take Your Child To The Library Day is a great excuse to swing by.

The library...a treasure trove for all ages. Priceless.
Decorating With Candy Day
Image Source: en.wikiipedia.org
On Decorating With Candy Day, people can create and enjoy their sweet creations without guilt. Why not slather a layer of your favorite chocolate candies over a batch of freshly baked and iced cupcakes? Or crush up some peppermint candies and sprinkle them over some minty cheesecake, to add a delicious, fresh taste? Or surprise your own family by creating a whole family scene of jelly babies on top of some cookies? Whatever you fancy, today is the day where you can buy a packet of those much-loved candies, and get decorating away to create a special sweet treat that will be sure to make everyone proud to celebrate Decorating with Candy Day!

Last for today...the quirky...would you believe?

Car Insurance Day
Image Source: flickr.com
It can’t compete for romance with Valentine’s Day. It can’t inspire the joy of Christmas. And it’s almost impossible to find an appropriate costume. But if you remember it, Car Insurance Day will keep you covered the whole year round.

Why not “celebrate” with a quick price comparison – or just a phone call to ask for a better deal. Then test the smoke alarm, tidy the garage and enjoy the peace of mind.

Just remember...no insurance, no car!

Whew! All of this celebration and on one day! 

Th-Th-Th-That's all Folks!

The only thing left to do is to decide which one(s) to celebrate. 
Have fun!

Check out 2014...Best Superbowl Commercials?

Super 1st!

      Looking back to plan ahead...                           Somethin' Good's Happin' 

Tomorrow will begin a new month with 1/12 of the year already gone. With the month of February comes many celebrations as already noted in looking back to plan ahead, some filled with absolute craziness but not without loads of foodie fun. Are you ready? Bring on the celebrations...

This year February 1st is super loaded! 

Super Bowl Sunday: Past, Present, Future

Budweiser Super Bowl XLVIII Commercial -- "Puppy Love" (2014)
A Super Bowl is not a super bowl without the Clydesdale!

"The Super Bowl is a game. Life is for real. What I went through helped me get to where I am today. I won't forget. I can't forget. Because a man who forgets his past sometimes loses his soul and forgets where to go in the future."

 Embrace the Past...

  Few ads ever reach this level of heartfelt Americana.

Top 10 Best All-Time Commercials

 Empower the Present...

2015 Superbowl Ads

 Enrich the Future...

 50th Super Bowl in 2016 Goes to...

 Let's play football!

Don't forget the chips & watch out for the Chipper Dipper!


Looking back to look ahead...

          Brandy Alexander                                                              Super 1st! 

What's Happenin'? in ...

Something is happening and being celebrated on a daily basis! What's Happenin' kept you updated on funny days, weird holidays, foodie fun and celebrations during the month of February in 2014. The date of 'holidays' designated as specific days of the week change in 2015 but the celebrations themselves do not change providing choices on what to celebrate or not. Look ahead by looking back.
What will you celebrate in February, 2015? There is so much more to celebrate than just Valentine's Day. Check out what's on the calendar & plan ahead. In fact, it is not too early for a Prelude to Valentine's Day: The Day of Love

In addition to daily events, there are month-long festivities:

Berry Fresh Month
Celebration of Chocolate Month
 Great American Pies Month
National Cherry Month
National Fiber Focus Month
 National Fondue Month
 National Grapefruit Month
 National Heart Healthy Month
 National Hot Breakfast Month
 National Snack Food Month
 Potato Lover’s Month

Happy Celebrations & Bon Appétit 
 on the Foodie Days!

Friday, January 30, 2015

Brandy Alexander

The Kipfel                                             Looking back to look ahead...
National Brandy Alexander Day

Decadent delight on a cold winter's night!

When one hears the name Brandy Alexander, a person might readily come to mind with question as to who is he or she? Of course, for anyone familiar with cocktails knows it is not a person at all but still may wonder who was the eponymous chap named Alexander known worldwide as a specialty drink? Definitely not Alexander the Great for Alexander III of Macedon did not carry the first name, or any name part for that matter, of Brandy.

Classic Brandy Alexander
2 oz Cognac or other fine aged brandy
1 oz Dark crème de cacao
1 oz Cream
Garnish: Freshly grated nutmeg
Glass: Chilled Cocktail Glass

WOW your friends with a Brandy Alexander Pie!


Tempt the taste buds with Brandy Alexander Cupcakes!

Cheers! Don't forget Super Bowl Sunday!

Is your mouth watering yet?

yum, yum, yum . . . yummy!

Pocketful of Sunshine

Today in Music History: January 31

To encounter brothers and sisters who have been successful recording artists is not totally out of the question. But to have a brother and sister experience chart toppers at the same time is not so commonplace. In 2004, a brother and sister were the first to have separate solo UK No.1 hits. The spotlight for this day shines on the sister of Daniel Bedingfield.

Welcome into the Spotlight...

Natasha Bedingfield Gallery

Natasha Bedingfield: sultry combination of good looks, husky voice and charming personality 

It's difficult to find any other singer who possesses such great energy to represent women empowerment and create good music, other than Natasha Bedingfield. She released her debut album, Unwritten, in 2004, which contained primarily up-tempo pop songs and was influenced by R&B music. Bedingfield managed to break both UK and US markets in a short intevral of time with her pop/R&B signature songs.

Songfacts: This empowerment song was featured on the third season's finale of MTV's The Hills. Another Bedingfield song, "Unwritten," is the reality show's theme song. Bedingfield also performed this on the seventh series final of the Canadian teen drama TV series Degrassi: The Next Generation. "Pocketful of Sunshine also featured on the soundtrack of The Sims 2 Freetime computer game, Bedingfield recording a version in the unique language of The Sims called Simlish.
On this day...

2008 Natasha Bedingfield entered the US chart at number three with her album Pocketful of Sunshine, equaling the record set by soul singer Sade in having the highest-ever US chart debut for a UK-signed female. The British singer sold 50,000 copies of the record in its first week of release.
Bit of Sunshine humor...
This song was a running joke in the 2010 movie, Easy A, where Emma Stone's character gets one of those greeting cards that plays a song when you open it, and "Pocketful Of Sunshine" plays. After dismissing the song, she spends the next weekend sitting around the house constantly listening to it. Bedingfield's manager William Derella told Billboard magazine that he had reservations when he first heard the pitch. "They sent me the part of the script where the star of the film says the song is awful, so we turned it down," he said. "But then they sent me the rest of the script, where the character can't get the song out of her head and winds up loving it. I approved it, and we've seen a nice sales boost for the track."
[Source: Songfacts.com]
No.1 hits on this day...
[Click on the year for all the songs that hit number one on the charts in the US during that year.]

  • 1970 The Jackson Five went to No.1 on the US singles chart with 'I Want You Back'. The song was originally written for Gladys Knight & The Pips and was the first of four No.1's for the group. It made No.2 in the UK.
  • 1981 Blondie went to No.1 on the US singles hart with 'The Tide Is High', the group's third US No.1, also a No.1 in the UK.
  • 1988 Janet Jackson started a two week run at No.1 on the US singles chart with 'Together Again'.

2007 Jim Morrison was enlisted to help fight global warming more than 35 years after his death. 'Woman in the Window', a previously unreleased poem written and recorded by The Doors frontman shortly before he died in 1971 was being set to music and used to publicise the Global Cool campaign.

And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times...

Lone Ranger rides the airways...radio, that is!

This Day in History: January 30, 1933

"Hi yo, Silver, away...A fiery horse with the speed of light, a cloud of dust and a hearty 'Hi-Yo Silver' … the Lone Ranger!"
Not sure about you but I just love learning trivia facts about the heroes I grew up idolizing. This one is really special - The 'masked rider of the plains' known none other than The Lone Ranger. My fondest memories rely on my observances via television and the movie screen of his fighting injustice joined by his trusty steed, Silver, and his loyal Indian scout, Tonto. Of course, that is not how or where he got his start.

Farmer Listening to Radio, 1933.
Records of the Office of the Secretary of Agriculture,
1839–1981, Record Group 16, National Archives.
With his faithful Indian companion, Tonto, the daring and resourceful masked rider of the plains led the fight for law and order in the early West. 
It was on this day, January 30, 1933 eighty-two years ago when The Lone Ranger debuted on WXYZ (Detroit) radio station. Yep! He made his first "appearance" on a radio show! His character was based on a former Texas Ranger. The book "The Lone Star Ranger" by Zane Grey had been dedicated to Texas Ranger Captain John R. Hughes in 1915. Some believe the original character was inspired from experiences of Capt. Hughes. Others think the character was based on US Marshal Bass Reeves. In either case, the show was a hit!

Behind the Scenes at the Radio Station
 Catchphrases (Kemo sabe, faithful friend, trusty scout), the Ranger's trademark silver bullets, and the theme music from the William Tell Overture have become tropes of popular culture.
There are many hallmarks that have followed The Lone Ranger well into the 21st century. Remember the music? The William Tell Overture. Once established there wasn't any other musical score that would ever take its place. It became iconic. Then, since we are in the days of the wild, wild West, there were definitely guns involved and the Lone Ranger's gun shot silver bullets. Also notable because of Western modes of travel overland there was the need for a horse. Not just any horse. This horse was a white stallion.

Return with us now to those thrilling days of yesteryear. From out of the past come the thundering hoof-beats of the great horse Silver. The Lone Ranger rides again!
Keep in mind we are still talking about a radio program. There was no wide open range or even live horses. Just sounds...sounds presented as authentically as possible as though you were there. The voice of Tonto reflected a mono-syllabic tone of a Native American with his most memorable word being "kemo sabe." The Lone Ranger was portrayed by Brace Beemer from 1941 until the show’s final episode in 1954.

Clayton Moore as The Lone Ranger and Silver
Source: en.wikipedia.org
Jay Silverheels as Tonto
Source: findagrave.com
A face was finally put with the name when the show transitioned from radio to television. A couple of Lone Ranger serials were released by Republic Pictures in the late 1930s. It was throughout the 1950s when The Lone Ranger television series (1949-57) made the "masked rider of the plains" an American institution. It became ABC network's highest-rating show throughout the decade. While geared more to children, the show was equally enjoyed by adults!

Clayton Moore and Jay Silverheels played the Lone Ranger and Tonto, respectfully, in all eight seasons of the television show, as well as in both the 1956 and 1958 feature-length movies. The Lone Ranger was revived in the 21st century with the making and release of a new version.
 The Lone Ranger (2013 film)
How does the Armie Hammer/Johnny Depp version measure up? 

Doesn't look anything like the Lone Ranger and Tonto I grew up knowing and loving. Guess I will just be content with my grandfather's radio hero and my own television memories!

 “To have a friend, a man must be one; all men are created equal; and everyone has within himself the power to make this a better world. God put the firewood there, but that every man must gather and light it himself, a man should make the most of what equipment he has, that ‘this government of the people, by the people, and for the people’ shall live always, that men should live by the rule of what is best for the greatest number.” (The Lone Ranger Creed)

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