Wednesday, June 24, 2015

So You Think You Know About Disney Animation?

I just watched one of TCM's great movies. It was Esther Williams' day today and movie after movie featured her as the star or co-star. She swam a lot, smiled a lot and even sang a bit. She had that understated beauty that is hard to resist.
In the last movie of the evening, she played love-interest to Howard Keel, as Hannibal, in Jupiter's Darling. It's amazing to watch Howard Keel in these old movies because all I formerly knew him as was JR's Daddy in Dallas. What a waste of talent that turned out to be! Not that I didn't enjoy Dallas (the original series) but Howard Keel's part was nothing close to seeing him in his heyday.
The reason for this blog post is that last movie featured an actress named Marjorie Belcher (later known as Marge Champion). That young lady could really dance and sing and was pretty cute, too. I'd never heard of her before, so I "googled" her and look what I came up with -

I'm an avid Disney fan, animation fan, Pinocchio, Snow White, and Fantasia fan. Who knew, right? Well, I didn't, anyway, and I thought maybe you didn't either.

You're welcome.

Answers and Flora

A beautiful lily - we planted a bunch of bare root plants we were given a few years ago in a 'lasagna garden' bed up in the front corner of the yard. This is the first year they've bloomed because, for the most part, we've been able to keep the cows and goats from eating them (they did get a few plants but maybe we'll do even better next year).
 Because I've been successful with making a fence out of old tin roofing, I've saved my wild raspberries from marauders as well and we've got a small crop to harvest. I've already tried a few berries and they are extra sweet and tasty.
This is my little vegetable garden, you can see some peas, my waddle fence (made with using only stuff scavenged from the yard) and the pots of cabbage (it's an experiment), tomatoes and sunflowers, and you may be able to make out the cucumbers in the back - lots of yellow blossoms but very few bees (sad face). I've seen some sweat bees hovering in and out of the flowers, so maybe they'll get pollinated. I did see some fruiting, but only a few so far. 

The garden is not pretty, but it's made to keep out pests that demolish and forage ravenously whenever and where ever they choose. I've managed to keep them out with this mess of fencing and blocking access. It makes weeding and harvesting a challenge, but it is working and that's all I care about. 

So, now, the questions I asked in my last post have gotten some mulling over. While no one else has chosen to lend an opinion, I have come up with some answers of my own.

The reason I don't like to watch network television anymore is the commercials. I truly wish there would be a groundswell of outrage about this. Get out your clocks, timers, stopwatches and see for yourself. Here's the scenario - the show starts without fanfare. In the past, shows had an intro, then a commercial; now, they just jump right into the show (an intro follows after the first batch of commercials). Five minutes (maybe) of show, then 4 of commercials. Another 6 minutes of show is followed by another 4 minutes of ads. And some of these ads are duplicated, one right after the other! It's just a waste of time, so, unless it's a really great show, I don't watch network. [Of course, many other satellite and cable channels also have loads of commercials as well. I don't watch them much either, not the ones loaded with commercials.] And here's the thing about commercials today - they're not creative or funny or smart anymore. They're stupid, idiotic and aggravating and don't succeed in their aim of selling anything, in my opinion. Many times you watch an entire ad and don't even know what product or service it tried to sell you. Turner Classic Movies channel doesn't show commercials during the movie - in between, yes, but not during. I'm in love. 

Now, Facebook; it's my own fault that I end up spending way to much time on it. I don't stay on task, ie. checking messages or scrolling through for "important" posts made to my timeline by others. No, I have to check out the cute videos, the new photos and little sayings people put up to share a nice thought or a cheeky joke. It's  not FB's fault it's so full of stuff, it's mine. 'Nuff said. 

When I asked how you can keep from smiling when hearing a nice tune or a seeing a pretty flower, it was simply rhetorical. But, when I thought about that, I realized that it's likely that some people, on a given day, won't smile at those things. Why? It's their frame of mind. 

 The next question, again, has everything to do with frame of mind. It's important to know that your frame of mind simply means your attitude, mood or outlook. Once recognized, anyone can change their frame of mind. You've surely heard of affirmations - things you tell yourself that help empower you for a task or just with facing the day - and all they do is change your frame of mind. It's easy to 'fool' yourself into having a new outlook. Say you're on your way to work and you're not feeling it - you're dreading to face, again, what's been going on the past few days, weeks, months even. You're in the car, scowling (check your reflection, you are!) and thinking negative thoughts. Just stop to recognize what you're saying and feeling a moment. Now, start saying just the opposite (true or not, unreasonable or not) and say it out loud. After a minute or two, you WILL start having a change in your frame of mind. Oh, it can change back again in a heartbeat, if you let it, but you don't have to let it. That's all I'll say about that, for now.

The book, well, there are real problems with finishing it. First and foremost, I've never written a book before and don't have a coach, so I'm on my own. To be perfectly honest, it'll get done when I figure out the climax and denouement; the plot is good up to the point I have it and the characters are fine, too, it's just that pesky top rung of the ladder and ending I'm stuck on.

I'm sitting here, typing, and glancing over at my guitar right now. It's right there in it's gig bag on it's stand, and it's lonely because I haven't played it in months. I took the first step the other day, getting out some song sheets that I enjoy playing, but that's as far as I got. I did play my keyboard, however, and do so with some regularity. Music is important for brain function, so it shouldn't be neglected. Case closed and question answered.

Leading traffic to a post or site can be tricky, if you really get into it, but I don't. I tried that once and it's simply more than I care to be tied up with. I'd rather spend time making stuff than researching 'proper' keywords and such. If you post interesting content and get it to enough people (google, FB, Pinterest, Twitter, for example), sharing on as many sites as you can, you'll get some traffic. You just have to be diligent to get more and more traffic.

As for hours in a day and getting stuff done - one of my faults is not setting daily goals, and setting them realistically when I do. When you have a goal in mind you make time for it. It's not a 'pie in the sky' hope, it's a plan. That's the real crux of the matter, planning.
I operate well with schedules - the kind done with lists,  prioritizing, and crossing off when done. This is how I operated as nurse manager. I multi-tasked hourly; it was my job description, and I would never have been able to do it without a list. It's what made me successful as an assistant director, scheduling coordinator, in-service coordinator, wound care coordinator, etc. I had annual, monthly, bi-monthly, weekly, and daily schedules to follow.
People don't really know what it's like to be a nurse unless they've done it themselves. Most staff nurses have practically minute-to-minute schedules to follow in their daily work - and those depend on written plans they usually have no control over. It's really hard to get everything done when you factor in how often unforeseen glitches, emergencies, and other human-being-woes come into play in the course of an 8 hour shift. These unplanned events are never considered by someone sitting behind a desk making decisions about how an 8 hour shift should unfold in an ideal world.
I suppose it's a small wonder that I shy away from doing that now. It reminds me of a career that, while rewarding and one I wouldn't have chosen to live without, was so very stressful that I feel as though I've been suffering from PTSD since I left it. All the same, though, I really NEED to start making schedules again if I am serious about using my time wisely.

Alright, I've answered the questions I posed, and I hope I answered them well. Not only for you, reader, but mainly for myself. They were my questions, after all.