Motivation Monday – Everyday is your chance to show people you can be Great (Rosa Parks Day)



Rosa Parks Day is an American holiday celebrated on February 4 or December 1 in honor of the civil rights leader Rosa Parks.

On December 1, 1955 after a long day of work Rosa Parks boarded a bus in Montgomery, Alabama. She took her seat in the ‘colored’ section, but as she road the Cleveland Avenue bus home, the bus began to fill.

The Montgomery city ordinance allowed bus drivers to assign seating, however it did not permit them to demand a passenger give up their seat. Despite this, bus drivers had customarily required black passengers to give up their seats to white passengers when the buses became full.

When Rosa Parks was asked to give up her seat, she refused. She was arrested and what followed is Civil Rights history. She was found guilty on December 5, 1955 of violating the city ordinance and fined $10 plus a court fee.

African American leaders, including E.D. Nixon and Martin Luther King, Jr., organized the Montgomery Bus Boycott for the day of Rosa Park’s trial. The boycott was a success and lasted several months, devastating the transportation system in Montgomery.

I would like to be remembered as a person who wanted to be free… so other people would be also free – Rosa Parks

The Modern Caveman by Christina B (BLW Contributor)



There continues to live a bit of caveman in us today, I think. The man of our house, for one, loves making a wood fire whether it’s in a fireplace or for a barbecue or simply for the sake of having a sociable ambience fire, and I love having a wood fire just as much. Staring into the flames of a cosy fire while time seems to stand still for a while is mesmerising, comforting, peaceful and very social. Nothing rushes us as we sit around a camp fire maybe with a glass of wine and life slows down for a while, bringing us back to nature and the people around us.  Television or mobile phones are superfluous, the company of the fire which has a life of its own and those around us are enough. It takes us back to a time where daily activities ended with last light and everyone would gather around the fire at night to share stories and life would slow down for a while.

The smell of a friendly wood fire triggers happy memories of sitting around a camel thorn wood camp fire whilst holidaying in Namibia, a hard wood that would burn slowly with its own particular magical smell. It’s something I’ve loved doing from my childhood days. Sometimes in Namibia in the middle of winter in freezing temperatures we sat around a camp fire at night but it was so bitterly cold that only the part of your body which faced the fire stayed warm. Every so often after you’d warmed your hands over the fire you’d have to turn around to warm your back because it would have got cold in the meantime, and so you’d continue to keep turning around every few minutes to try to keep warm. And no camp fire was complete without having toasted some sticky sweet marshmallows on sticks.

One of our camel thorn wood camp fires in Etosha, Namibia, on our last visit there

One of our camel thorn wood camp fires in Etosha, Namibia, on our last visit there

Where cavemen might have looked at the sun askance and murmured amongst each other over the weather, we now have weather apps predicting and forecasting what we can expect. We have weather stations telling us current, minimum and maximum temperatures and weather channels on TV with long-term forecasts. My husband loves weather stats, amongst others, and always updates us on the latest forecasts, especially when we’re away from home. The weather station goes along on holiday and gets moved around to different locations for different readings in an attempt to find the ideal location, such as under the front veranda of the tent or beside the tent in the shade.

Recently when we stayed at Donnelly River, an old mill village in the Southwest of Western Australia, in an old timber miller’s cottage we had the opportunity to enjoy some lovely wood fires again. Lying nestled in a little valley, the village gets colder than the surrounding area and with tall Karri trees that have grown to about 30 metres all around, the sun sets early and as soon as it does the temperature dips quickly. Our caveman was in his element when he was able to light us two fires every night – one in the fireplace and another in the old wood fired kitchen stove. Collecting the kindle and firewood supply of varying thickness was a daily activity with which Child No 3 was tasked to help dutifully every time, much the same as it would have been in years gone by and great was the joy – mine included – when the little timber cottage started heating up and in the early morning cold we’d try to warm our hands over the fire inside the old kitchen stove. We teased him over his unabated joy and pride in having made us the fires, true caveman style, but we enjoyed having those fires in equal measure.

The old wood fire kitchen stove

The old wood fired kitchen stove

The old wood fired kitchen stoveA trip away wouldn’t be complete without the weather station going along though, so we had accurate temperature data all along, but it was quite entertaining when we were very proudly told the actual stats of a 0.1°C temperature increase inside the cottage not long after the fire in the old kitchen stove got going and I realised that even though we love all the temperature gages and modern gadgets that our technological age provides, deep down there still lives a bit of caveman in us, which really makes us but modern cavemen and which will hopefully live on in years to come. It’s great to take a step back sometimes and appreciate things in life that really matter, albeit with the aid of some mod cons.

Check out other great articles from Christina B


Happy Small Business Saturday!!! – Support local business stores around your community



Small Business Saturday is an American shopping holiday held on the Saturday after US Thanksgiving during one of the busiest shopping periods of the year

First observed on November 27, 2010, it is a counterpart to Black Friday and Cyber Monday, which feature big box retail and e-commerce stores respectively. By contrast, Small Business Saturday encourages holiday shoppers to patronize brick and mortar businesses that are small and local. Small Business Saturday is a registered trademark of American Express corporation.


In 2010 the holiday was conceived and promoted by American Express via a nationwide radio and television advertising campaign. That year Amex bought advertising inventory on Facebook, which it in turn gave to its small merchant account holders, and also gave rebates to new customers to promote the event.

American Express publicized the initiative using social media, advertising, and public relations. Many local politicians and small business groups in the United States issued proclamations concerning the campaign, which generated more than one million Facebook “like” registrations and nearly 30,000 tweets under the Twitter hashtags #smallbusinesssaturday and #smallbizsaturday

The Rebellious Typewriter by Ryan Fu




Sitting down on her tiny table top chair furiously banging on the keys on her cute old school turquoise typewriter, typing right in front of the Apple Store during a busy holiday season at the Grove. She was in her own universe creating her own world as she typed out poems on demand by people who gave her donations, but honestly I think she would have done it for free because it looked fun. After finding out the epic thing she was doing I was totally enamored by her. Plus, I wanted to check out her work maybe even writing a poem for me.

I wait patiently even though I was the only one waiting in line for her to create a poem for me. At the moment she was in the middle of finishing up a masterpiece for a nine-year-old girl. Her parents looked like artistic hipsters, who also thought what she was doing was cool as well. The tiny tot looked on as the bigger version of herself typed with a purpose occasionally missing up on a word and manually fixing it on the fly, which we all take for granted with Auto-Correct. We all forgot the simple pleasure of carefully typing in words but if you messed up, you really had to care a lot to correct your mistake but it made you into a better writer.

As I watch her being in the zone as the little girl danced around her and her turquoise machine, a crowd started to gather like a Sprinkles Cupcake store when they have giveaways but you don’t get sick of too much poetry maybe a little crazy but that’s a good thing. Some people looked puzzled at her prehistoric machine. Even workers from the Apple store where a bit confused on what she was typing on, making comments outside of the store like,

“What is that? Is that an old computer? Where is the screen?”

But then the comments became a little more abrasive as the employees showed off their Hater Degrees, telling each other that she shouldn’t be there, which did not faze her one bit. She continued on finishing the little girl’s poem even with the rude comments from the Apple employees.

When she finally finished her poem, she handed her completed piece to the toddler. The look on the little nine-year-old girl was simply priceless. She made her feel like it was Christmas morning and the parents were so happy giving the poet a generous donation. I couldn’t wait for my turn like a fat kid next in line at an ice cream truck on a hot summer day.

I confidently step up into her office as she asks me what she wanted me to create. She wanted hints or pointers on what the poem should be about. I tell her that I was in terrible mental and physical discomfort like a prisoner in solitaire from working at the Grove for then last thirty days. She gives me a smile from chin to chin as she could see the pain in my face but also knew that I had a good sense of humor. She confidently tells me to wait on the side giving her ten minutes to type it up.

I was simply amazed. 10 fucking minutes, it took me that long to type up a title!

It takes the poet prodigy ten minutes to create a poem? Now I was totally intrigued because what kind of art can you create in less than ten minutes or less. She takes a minute to digest what I said to her then she takes one last look at me then off to the races. She begins to get to work, systematically and carefully constructing my piece. But like everything else great in life, nothing lasts forever. Security finally notices her surrounding her in the middle of my poem. 

“Excuse me miss but you have to leave,” as security kindly tells her.

Without lifting her head, “Sure, but tell me why,” continuing to finish my poem.

“Ugh, I’m not sure miss but you have to go.”

“No, that’s not a good reason,” she calmly tells the security guard making him look at the other security guard for support but he just shrugged his shoulder. 

I couldn’t believe what was happening. She was so feisty and rebellious towards authority like revolutionary poets of old not giving one fuck for anyone’s opinions except for their. Before the security calls his manager she tells him she was done, “I’m finished. I’ll leave now,” handing me my poem, which by the way she completed a little over ten minutes.


I handle it like an ancient piece of artifact making sure I didn’t smudge or bend it. She quickly wraps up her operation before attracting any more heat to her picking up her typewriter and folding her chair. I was so excited that I get my poem, which I didn’t even get a chance to read it. I was like just a happy kid and I was simply amazed how she continued to do what she loved to do in the midst of so many haters. I graciously thanked her and gave her a generous donation.

She gathers her things proceeding to leave to the Grove not because of the security telling her to do so but own her terms because she already made her point. That you can’t stop art or control it, you just have to let it be.

You can make art anywhere you want to with any kind of device, just make you sure you have passion for it and don’t give a fuck what people think because any good artists will tell you that you must have a bit of rebellious nature if you’re going to be a great artists because you’re pissing off the status quo.

Good art is a little dangerous because it can evoke emotions, which sometimes is not all positive but at least it makes you feel something for it. Art is supposed to make you feel alive making you forget the mundane motions of your life. Great artists add the beautiful bright colors to this dull grey world making us believe that we can do and imagine anything that we want to be in our lives.

Sometimes we have to act like rebellious typewriters in a world dominated by obedient computers.




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Happy Thanksgiving by The Ivory Tide (BLW Contributor)


national-lampoon-s-christmas-vacation-national-lampoons-christmasvacation-31459765-1500-997Happy Thanksgiving to all my followers and anyone from around the globe who happens by. This is my favorite time of year and if you know me just a little by now, well, I’m not so serious. I love a good laugh. The movie Christmas Vacation always had us in stitches, especially the antics of the good-hearted character played by Chevy Chase. My father used to tell me, “You know Mike reminds me of Chevy Chase.” Mike, of course, is my husband. Yep, I had to agree with my Dad. So every time I see him in a movie I think of my husband. Thanks Dad, I’m grateful. I guess God knew I needed laughter in my life.

There’s something about Dads in our life. You go to them for those important conversations in your life. We save them for the big stuff and then we never talk about it again. Our mother’s are there for us every step of the way, and we even call them mommy when we are teens. Somehow this makes us feel good. Now I’m one to believe that these roles can be reversed, so you see I use this loosely. A father can be more motherly and vice versa. People give us different things in life, some gifts, some pleasure, some outright trouble, and then, the special ones give us love. And we keep going back for more of that, right!?

Please think about this on this special holiday celebrated in America. I believe the little ones want more of your love along with boundaries and restrictions. They don’t want to be told no and how awful they are. Try to lift your little ones up and give less put downs. Think about yourself and how you’d like to be treated. Families don’t live by each other anymore, so grandparents don’t get to be a big part of the little ones lives. One of the common threads for my husband and myself in our life was grandparents. We were especially close to them. They gave us unconditional love. Always. I think children lack this now a days. What do I know? My family life is not perfect, but I do keep trying and loving.

I think knowing you are loved is a primary gift we get in life and some kids don’t have that. I am grateful for my parents, all their love and support they gave me throughout the years. They were supposed to be here with my family this year and we are sorry they couldn’t be here. Instead they are with one of their children, my brother, who needs them more. That’s the kind of parents they have always been, supportive til the end of time at their own expense. We love you mom and dad, forever. Miss you, too. Happy Thanksgiving to you and yours!

Now to lighten things up a bit. Have you ever heard of a turkey vulture? I hadn’t until I moved south many years ago. When you finally see one you will never forget them. They hang out in groups and love to perch themselves on the rooftops of homes or high in the trees. If you spot one or ten, then know that something big has died in your vicinity! Take a look.

turkey-vultures_nick_toddBy Kim Troike

Google Images Credit

Check out other great articles from The Ivory Tide 

This is your Chance to Post on BLW!!! – Share your Thoughts, Stories & Ideas with Us






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Leader of the Pack – Bruce Lee’s Rules for Success



He was a martial artist, actor, teacher, and philosopher.

He is widely considered to be one of the most influential martial artists of all time.

He is often credited with helping change the way Asians were presented in American films.

He’s Bruce Lee and here are his Top 10 Rules for success.

Credit: Evan Carmichael

Confession: I read “too much” and I don’t care by A Novel Glimpse (BLW Contributor)



This past weekend was the first weekend in a couple of months that my family had some down time. We weren’t camping, vacationing, birthday partying or sucked into any other commitment. I actually got to stay in my pajamas and read one day.

It was probably around noon that lounging day when my husband said something to me that he’s said to many times before:

“You read too much.”

I always hate when he says that to me. Partly because I know it’s true. Partly because it makes me feel guilty and embarrassed. It makes me feel like I need to stop reading so much.

I mean, I get why he thinks I read too much. Reading is a physically lazy hobby. You’re sitting or lying there with a book in your hand. I do try to read while walking on the treadmill a lot just to make up for the time I spend sitting with a book.

I’ll admit I spend a ton of time reading. It’s probably too much. Most of it is at night after my daughter goes to bed and my husband’s watching T.V. I explain it to people by saying he watches stuff I don’t like, so I read instead of watching with him. While that’s true, there are better reasons.

I really do love to read. I try to explain it is like watching a movie, only better. Non-readers don’t get this. Wouldn’t it be better to have an actual picture of what’s going on instead of imagining it? My answer is no, it’s not. There are so many emotions that cannot be shown simply by acting. Unless there is a narrator, you’re not in the characters heads like you are in books.

A prime example of that would be Fifty Shades of Grey. I remember reading the book and becoming sucked in by Ana’s emotions. They made the book for me. Her emotions are what kept me reading. I recently watched the movie. I have to be honest. The movie and its lack of emotions made me rethink how I felt about the book. (I don’t like it as much as I did before.) Instead of it being about the emotional connection Ana and Christian had, all I saw was the sex. And it wasn’t a pretty picture. Lack of emotions ruined it.

Also, books usually include more than movies. Anything imaginable can happen in a book. Not everything can physically happen in a movie. It’s gotten better with the special effects that are being created, but it’s not as good some authors’ imaginations. Then, there is the time constraint of two to two and a half hours. Most books take longer than that to read.

But that’s not even the real reason I read.

I read to feel.

Some people might label it escaping the norm, but it’s about feeling something for me. In my early twenties, everything was new and exciting. Once I started working full-time things started changing. Every day was similar. I used to yearn for the weekends and finding something exciting to do. Then, I got married, had my daughter and became a stay-at-home mom. While there were many exciting milestones, there was also a lot of boredom. My mind was used to the fast-paced work environment. Now, there wasn’t a lot of mental stimulation. I turned to reading to keep my mind sharp.

As I started reading, I discovered new authors and books. I found authors like Colleen Hoover, Jessica Park and Ginger Scott, that had me feeling. I felt so many emotions that I hadn’t in such a long time: first love, longing, heartbreak, etc. While I wouldn’t want my life to be any different from it is now, it was nice to be reminded of feelings I felt in my younger years when everything was new and exciting all the time. It made me appreciate my current life even more.

So, what I guess I’m trying to say through this long and rambling post is that I’m okay with reading “too much.” I’m not going to stop because it truly makes me happy. I know not everyone will understand my love for it, but that doesn’t matter. And the next time my husband says I read too much, I’m going to say,

“You spend too much time in the garage, snowmobiling, watching T.V., on the computer…”

Maybe that will help put things in perspective because life is too short not to do the things you love. And I love reading.

**Update: I feel the need to add to this post that my husband is an amazing guy. We normally “get” each other.  My obsession with reading is one area where we don’t always see eye to eye. He’s not a reader, so how could he understand? I hope my comeback at the end of this post doesn’t seem too sassy. It’s really just my way of putting my love of reading in a way he would understand.

Check out other great articles from A Novel Glimpse

Motivation Monday – You just need to BELIEVE in Yourself!!!