Blog Archives

Music In a Melancholy Mood

Today my optimistic self has fled from my soul at the moment. I am wondering and pondering big questions in my head trying to decide the best course of action for my melancholy mood.

I know lots of people have it worse than I. I have a good family even if I don’t speak to them as often as I should but I know they love me too even though the distance between us is humongous. Recently though, I am wondering what I could do or say to help my brother whom I haven’t seen in 30 years. I am trying to take a leaf out of Sting’s Lyrics praying that perhaps by setting him free he may come back to me. I know I can be a very possessive little sister but I love him to bits. I love him so much it’s disgustingly good. I know when he is ready he will let me or the rest of the family back in but I really wonder if it’s going to be another 30 years before it happens. I certainly hope not because I am planning a trip back to the states in 2015 to visit family and friends.

I want to make new memories with him and his own family. I do think in time it will happen but in this moment I am feeling melancholy. I don’t want to interfere with him but I want to be part of his life. Maybe I am asking too much but maybe it is what he needs too because I can’t imagine my world without him. We don’t have to speak all the time but just knowing he’s out their in the universe makes my world brighter.

August Peace Challenge: One Good Thing About Music

Since I began blogging in January, I have always loved sharing things about music and peace so when I discovered Kozo Hattori’s Blogger for Peace, I was rapt! This month though, I am sort of struggling with this challenge. I wanted to do something really special but when I try to sit down to write a song about Peace, a lot of things and songs come to my mind. Mostly it’s all the liturgical songs that I have grown up with.  I guess this would be the best place to start because if it wasn’t for the music that I heard growing up in church, I don’t think I would be as formed as I am.

In a lot of ways, music for the most part always ring with the truth of the lyrics.  I was thinking of doing a montage of songs that I have grown up with. I do know there are a lot of wonderful versions of the songs that I could find on youtube but wouldn’t it be more personable if I were to sing it myself? I am not sure but I do know there are such beautiful songs already about peace. Carey Landry wrote Peace Is Flowing Like A River and Sy Miller and Jill Jackson wrote one of my favorites which is Let There Be Peace On Earth and David Haas wrote Prayer for Peace.  I will spare everyone’s ears from me singing! 😉

Not everyone though believes in God but they do believe in peace and love so I thought why not put up a really lovely song that everyone should be able to relate to and with. Kozo Hattori in one way I think has started his own sort of Peace Train of sorts through our blogs so I thought it fitting to put up this video in my blog. Surely if we all stepped aboard the peace train in one way or another we’d start a really lovely revolution or evolution to peace. Thank you Kozo for setting out such a really wonderful challenge and I hope that everyone will glide on the peace train to make their country as well as our world a better place.

Morning Rituals

Everybody has a certain something that they like to do in the morning. As for me, I don’t really appreciate being woken up by a whining dog but it’s something that I am used to. I can easily go back to sleep. Poor Adam doesn’t have that sort of ability. He will lie in bed with me until he gets uncomfortable but always tries to get out quietly as not to disturb me. I love that about him. He’s such a sweety. If I try to attempt the same strategy, I epically fail 9 out 10 times. The man sleeps lightly. For once, I am not exaggerating.

After getting up, I usually head to the kitchen for breakfast. This morning, I had to grind more coffee for my coffee machine because I only had beans that needed to be ground. I like to have music on so I popped Pandora radio on my iPhone which I put into Adam’s high jacked  iPhone speaker because good music needs to be blasted. I danced around the house getting ready to eat. We had to put on our sweats because it was a cool 11 c (51.8 F) in the house. Summer has fled our part the world until probably December. I danced as the coffee grinder ground my delicious smelling coffee which was grown in Mullaway. There is a coffee plantation somewhere in our vicinity. I am so glad we learned of it. I put out our cereal and danced while waiting for Adam to join me at the dining table.

Sometimes I make my coffee after brekky as I did today. Adam went to go have his shower and I drink my coffee while deciding what I want to do next. The thing to do today was sit down and type out this blog. It feels like today is going to be a ripper of a day. I know my mom used to say not to sing before breakfast. I have, so let’s hope I prove that old wives’ tale wrong. I don’t want to cry before supper.

I need to go shower now myself but I really love my morning rituals. My mornings are normally spent waking up listening to Mitch whine at me to be let off so he can go have a pee around 6. I then hop back into to bed for a cuddle with Adam or chit-chat then fall back to sleep but hunger always gets me up. We then go to the kitchen and break our fast with cereal. The dogs then get fed by Adam or myself (usually Adam) and I work on doing my cappuccino in a mug. (Muggaccino) There is normally music playing via the iPhone. I know it’s not that earth shattering or exciting but there is something about it that I like doing.

Some people like to start their day with a run or walk but me, a cup of frothy coffee and cuddles always get my day off to the right start!

Do you have any morning rituals that you love?

Frothy Coffee for the Morning Win!

Frothy Coffee for the Morning Win!

Barnsey’s love of Cheap Wine and Three Day Growth

Some Australians already know of Barnsey who is a legend vocalist of the band Cold Chisel but did you know that I have created his alter-ego on the MMRPG of World of Warcraft? Actually, one of my toons (characters) lovingly named her bear after Jimmy Barnes because he too loves cheap wine and 3 day growth. The character, Whiloe, who is a  night elf huntress on the realm(server) of Silver Hand can tame many animals but the one she holds dearest to her heart is Barnsey. She did have a Barney but she decided to give him up when she discovered Barnsey near Everlook.

Whiloe with Barnsey about to enter the world!

Whiloe with Barnsey about to enter the world!

Better look at Whiloe, Barnsey is shaking his head so you don't get a clear look at him.

Better look at Whiloe, Barnsey is shaking his head so you don’t get a clear look at him.  His excuse is all the cheap wine making his vision blurry.

I had never heard of Jimmy Barnes or the band Cold Chisel until I moved from the land of my birth. I do enjoy their music though. It’s considered to be pub rock.  I never heard that term until I came to Australia but now I get it totally. They have been around quite a while, something like over 20 years. Jimmy Barnes and Ian Moss are headlining a tour soon in my area. I should have bought tickets. Sorry about my digressing from the subject of Barnsey but I thought I would let you into my thoughts about my Barnsey and his love of Cheap Wine! Ian Moss shouldn’t feel left out. I have a Draenei huntress named Neches who tamed a ravager called Mossy in the realm of Lightbringer.

I do love writing fun random posts so I thought this could be a cool subject to do! I leave you with the song that inspired Whiloe with the naming of her Barnsey.

Paul Mac: Song writer, producer, musician

When I moved to Australia back in 2002, I had no idea who Paul Mac was. I am hoping with this blog to expose you to some of my happy discoveries which I really treasure. Paul Mac is just a musical genius in my opinion. He has a wonderful ear as well as poetic style which I fell in love with when I heard “Just The Thing” from his album 3000 Feet High. I loved it so much, I bought the album. As I listened to it, I loved every song which he had written. It really spoke to me.

His next album, Panic Room, was really great too. The first song released was Sunshine Eyes which reminded me of Adam except it wasn’t Adam’s eyes I thought about it was Adam’s smile. Again, every song on that album was just terrific.

He has worked on many projects which I think are enhanced because of his ear. There is something very special about Paul Mac. I love the way he selects different singers for different songs. It’s just magical. I just discovered soundcloud and am thinking of maybe doing an audio blog with it. The idea is definitely appealing.
Missy Higgins does a collaboration with Paul Mac that he has posted there from a movie of a classic song by a band called Sherbet. The song is Howzat! It was a really different take which I liked. I liked the original but the version they did was pretty cool. I have added the two songs below so you can have a listen!

Paul Mac, if you ever want a back up singer or lyrist please look me up! HEE HEE! A girl can dream!

All That Jazz But The Smooth Makes Me Groove

There are so many things that I love but the thing I love most is my hubby which of course is why I married him. Adam has introduced me to many fine things but the one thing I have to thank him for the most is my love of Smooth Jazz. I love music of most variety but when I hear Smooth Jazz, I automatically think about Adam because he is the one who really helped me listen to it and appreciate it due to his enthusiasm for it.

When he came over to the states after challenging me to challenge him back in April of 2001, he had brought his mp3s over so that I could hear what he enjoyed listening to. I kept most of those songs for the exception of two. It wasn’t through his mp3s that I learned about Smooth Jazz. We would listen to radio stations online as well. We found Smooth because he was telling me about his love of Smooth Jazz. Leesville didn’t have any stations with that sort of genre so we of course had to look online.

I have heard Jazz before but it was more like New Orleans Jazz the brassy bluesy stuff but the jazz Adam was talking about was not like the stuff I was used to. It was softer. It was really an eye opener for me. After Adam returned to Australia, I found myself listening to it more than I ever did before and this one song really made me think of Adam. It still does to this day. Adam loves instrumentals the most and this song I think just fits him to a tea. It could also do with the fact that I would have visions of him at night as a child being my dance partner too. I will leave the conclusions up to you.

Some of my fave smooth jazz artists are Boney James, Pieces of A Dream, Candy Dufler, Chris Botti, Will Downing especially this song:

Incognito, man the list just goes on and on! There is just so much variety I can barely scratch the surface.

I am going to leave you with Get Into My Groove by Incognito! I have this one my mp3s but not the live version. I just love her voice!

It’s amazing the things you can discover if you just open up your mind or broaden your horizons. Great things can happen especially through the power of music!


My Heritage: A Hodge Podge Of Cultural Melting Pot

Today’s blog is going to be a bit all over the place but I hope to make my connections in the end which you may understand and if you don’t please leave a comment and I will try to clarify for you if I can.

I’ve been wanting to share this story for a while now but wasn’t sure how to do it. My story is not really that unique but for me, it does form me into who I am. I am quite proud of my heritage but at times, I  feel as if I have missed out on a few things. I can’t compare it to  the stolen generation of Aboriginal Australia but when I hear the stories that they share. I can feel a kinship to it because in some  ways, I have lost parts of my own heritage though I wasn’t ripped from my family in the way they were. The Aboriginal language is said to be  dying and I can say that the Cajun French my father spoke growing up is sort of dying as well. The University of Louisiana Lafayette is  teaching Cajun French now. I never took the course but to me Cajun French is a living language. The aborigines of Australia have a rich  oral history but because the stolen generation was stripped from their  families they have lost quite a bit of it. It’s hard to write down a history when it has been robbed from you or denied to you since it was deemed not worthy of knowing. When my father was growing up, he was  not allowed to speak the language of his birth in school. He spoke it when visiting his family but he didn’t teach it to his children.

I know more about my father’s side of my family mostly due to the fact  that is where they decided to settle once he retired from the Army. Both of my mother’s parents were deceased by
the time I was born. My  father’s parents were still living in Louisiana when he was stationed  at Ft Polk or at least my Paw Paw was. I think Me Maw died right before or right after we moved to Louisiana. I was only about 3 when  she died. I do know a little bit about my mom’s father and mother. Her father immigrated from Naples, Italy when he was 9. My mom’s mother  was born from Irish American stock. My mom spoke very little of her upbringing.

Dad’s sister, Dolly would come up and help us slaughter pigs or we  would drive down to visit PaPa and Aunt Dolly who lived about an  hour’s drive south-west of us near Hathaway.
We might go down for a  cousin’s wedding. Oh, the fun we’d have watching our parents dance or dancing with each other.

One of my dad’s favorite recording artists was Doug Kershaw. My father  said that Doug was a cousin. I am not sure if this is actual fact but  one of my fondest memories of my dad is him singing “Louisiana Saturday Night” or “Jole Blon” or “Louisiana Man”. Jole Blon was  definitely Dad’s all time favorite.

Certain things bring back memories to me. Just as the Boab tree in Western Australia moves me. Looking at Bald Cypress trees in the Atchafalaya Basin can move me especially if a great white egret is perched on or near it. I am not sure why but I have always loved Southwestern Louisiana. I know it’s partly to do with my father’s heritage. I know when we would drive down to Lafayette my heart would always skip a beat when I spotted the spanish moss strewn cypress trees. I am really thankful that we got to take a swamp tour with Judy and Margaret back in 2006. I am not sure if it holds good memories for them but it sure did bring up some nice ones for me.
I took Adam down to look at Vermillionville when he came to meet me  for something to do as well as try to let him get an idea about my heritage on my father’s side. I learned more myself with that visit.  If you are ever in Lafayette, Louisiana, I highly recommend spending  some time exploring the venue. I know if I get to return back to  Louisiana, I would go again if I can fit it into my schedule.

It sort of baffles me how humanity can keep making the same mistakes when it comes to prejudices. I have come across bigotry and prejudices while growing up on my father’s side of the family. I look also how people who believe in God can look down on other believers because  they don’t use the same rituals to praise Him. I am not sure why some  people believe they are better than some one else because of skin  colour or religious belief. I have seen it occur in films which were  made all over the world. It occured in my own ancestory. It has happened in Australia with natives being taken away from their  families for the greater good. Children who should have been with  their families were taken to be taught how to serve or be educated to  be better. These people survived thousands of years before white men  came along and decided that they were the savages. When I look at it,  I can see who the real savages were.

It’s not just the white people though who have this twisted sense of  righteousness. I know of people who look down at their fellow countrymen because of their religious belief or because they were not born on the right side of the track. Lies can be told a thousand  different ways but the truth can be only told only one way. In my heart, I feel as if we are suppose to live with tolerance. I strive to  honour our differences and learn to respect others beliefs even if they aren’t my own. Money doesn’t make you a better person or  education can not make you a better person if you can’t discern the  truth from what you are being taught. Blind acceptance of things will  not protect you but shedding light on situations will help you find  the truth of what is being told.

The pieces of information I get from my heritage have helped form me.  I walk with the knowledge of where I come from in hope of spreading  love and tolerance to others that I touch in my lifetime.