Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Music Column – The Breakfast Show with William Price King and Sally Cronin – Chart Hits 1981 Part One- Luther Vandross, Kenny Rogers, Phil Collins, Dolly Parton


Each week William and I select two top hits from the charts in the US and UK starting with 1960 for two weeks followed by 1961 etc..through to 1985. We will also include some of the notable events in those years for the up and coming stars who were centre stage at the time. We are now in the 1980s.

Welcome to our show and we are excited to share decades of music with you in 2021. Here is my first selection of top 1981 hits which I hope you will enjoy.

News Event:  January 16th John Lennon’s single “Woman” is posthumously released in the UK

Luther Vandross  –  A house is not a home 

“A house is not a home” is from Vandross’ Grammy nominated debut album “Never too much.”  The track, an R&B hit single, is seven minutes long, and became one of Vandross’ signature songs.  His performance of the song at the 1988 NAACP Awards telecast brought Dionne Warwick to tears.  In 2009, Essence magazine included Vandross’ version of this song in their list of the “25 Best Slow Jams of All Time”.

News Event: January 30th 8th American Music Awards: Barbra Streisand & Kenny Rogers win

Kenny Rogers – Lady

“Lady,” an international success, was written by Lionel Richie and released on the album “Kenny Rogers’ Greatest Hits.” It made history becoming the first record of the 1980s to chart on all four of Billboard magazine’s singles charts – Country, Hot 100, Adult Contemporary and Top Soul Singles. It is listed at #60 on Billboard’s All Time Top 100.

News Event:  February 5th Joni Mitchell inducted into the Canadian Hall of Fame

Now time for my first picks from 1981 which would prove to be a spectacular year and I hope you will enjoy my selection.

Phil Collins – In The Air Tonight

“In the Air Tonight” is the debut solo single by the English drummer and singer-songwriter Phil Collins. It was released as the lead single from Collins’s debut solo album, Face Value, in January 1981. The song climbed to No. 2 on the UK Singles chart, but was held off the top spot by the posthumous release of John Lennon’s “Woman”. It reached No. 1 in Austria, Germany, Switzerland and Sweden, and the top 10 in Australia, New Zealand and several other European territories.  Phil Collins

News EventApril 4th 26th Eurovision Song Contest: Bucks Fizz for United Kingdom wins singing “Making Your Mind Up” in Dublin

Dolly Parton – 9 to 5

“9 to 5” is a song written and originally performed by the American country music entertainer Dolly Parton for the 1980 comedy film of the same name. In addition to appearing on the film soundtrack, the song was the centerpiece of Parton’s album 9 to 5 and Odd Jobs, released in late 1980. The song was released as a single in November 1980. The song garnered Parton an Academy Award nomination and four Grammy Award nominations, winning her the awards for Best Country Song and Best Country Vocal Performance, Female. Dolly Parton

Additional sources: On This Day – Music – Hits of the 70s: Playback FMWikipedia

Your Hosts for The Breakfast Show

William Price King is an American jazz singer, crooner, and composer.

His interest in music began at an early age when he studied piano and clarinet in high school. At Morehouse College in Atlanta where he grew up, he sang in the Glee Club and studied classical music. After graduation he went off to the Yale School of Music where he earned a Masters degree. From there he journeyed to New York where he created a jazz trio ‘Au Naturel’ which performed in some of the hottest venues in Manhattan including gigs on Broadway and the famous ‘Rainbow Room.’ These gigs opened doors for performances in Montreal and a European tour.

While touring Europe he met a lovely French lady, Jeanne Maïstre, who, a year later became his wife. King left the group ‘Au Naturel’ and settled in the south of France where he started a new life on the French Riviera, opening his own music school – the “Price King Ecole Internationale de Chant.” He has had the pleasure over the years of seeing many of his students excel as singers on a professional level, and some going on to become national celebrities. He continues to coach young singers today, in his spare time.

Blog– IMPROVISATION William Price King on Tumblr – Buy William’s music: William Price King iTunes – FacebookWilliam Price King – Twitter@wpkofficial
Regular Venue – Cave Wilson

Sally Cronin is an author, blogger and broadcaster who enjoyed four years as part of the team on Onda Cero International’s English speaking morning show in Marbella and then for two years as a presenter on Expressfm the local radio station in Portsmouth. She co-presented two ‘Drive Time’ shows a week with Adrian Knight, hosted the live Thursday Afternoon Show and The Sunday Morning Show guests including musicians and authors. Following this she became Station Director for a local internet television station for two years, producing and presenting the daily news segment, outside broadcasts and co-presenting the Adrian and Sally chat show live on Friday evenings.

She and her husband David have now returned to Ireland where they live on the Wexford Coast where she blogs and continues to write books.

Books :Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – More reviews: Goodreads – blog: Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Twitter: @sgc58 – Facebook: Sally Cronin – LinkedIn: Sally Cronin

Next week 1981 Part Two. We hope you will tune in.. as always we love to hear from you.. thanks William and Sally.

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2021 -#Potluck – Know Your Worth – Claire Plaisted with A Conversation about Perceived Value Posted on Facebook by Amanda Zito.


Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 1100 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine.

The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history, family and the most recent series was #PotLuck where I shared a random selection of different topics. This series is along the same lines… but is a ‘Lucky Dip’

In this series I will be sharing posts from the first six months of 2021 – details of how you can participate are at the end of the post.

This is the second post from author and publisher Claire Plaisted and it is a reminder that we need to set a worth on our work and that of others that reflect not just the finished project but all the work that goes into it… that includes writing books.

Know Your Worth – A Conversation about Perceived Value, Posted on Facebook by Amanda Zito.

KNOW YOUR WORTH

There are so many people who don’t understand what your job is. I’ve had one client decided all I was doing was putting images in her book and therefore I cost to much… Never had the nerve to ask me, never spoke to me again, never apologised. Think about the job you are doing and how much time and effort, skills and experience goes into it… Then you may have a better understanding of the pre-publishing world.

I have also been trying to tell folks about researching who you hire to help you with your manuscript. Only paying a deposit and never pay full costs until a project is finished and approved. Like I usually say, ‘you don’t pay the plumber until after the job is done.’

The link above shows the image of a deck to be made.

A CONVERSATION ABOUT PERCEIVED VALUE:

A customer asked a contractor friend of mine how much it would cost to do this project.
My friend gave him a proposal: $4500

The customer responded: That’s seems really high.
My friend asked: What do you think is a reasonable price for this job?

The customer answered: $2500 maximum
My friend responded: Ok, then I invite you to do it yourself.

The customer answered: I don’t know how to.
My friend responded: Alright, then how about for $2500 I’ll teach you how to. So besides saving you $2000, you’ll learn valuable skills that will benefit you in the future.

The customer answered: Sounds good! Let’s do it!
My friend responded: Great! To get started, you are going to need some tools. You will need a chop saw, table saw, cordless drill, bit set, router, skill saw, jig saw, tool belt, hammer, etc..

The customer answered: But I don’t have any of those tools and I can’t justify buying all of these for one job.
My friend responded: Ok. Well then for an additional $300 I can rent my tools to you to use for this project.

The customer answered: Okay. That’s fair.
My friend responded: Great! We will start the project on Monday.

The customer answered: I work Monday through Friday. I’m only available on the weekends.
My friend responded: If you want to learn from me then you will need to work when I work. This project will take 3 days so you will need to take 3 days off work.

The customer answered: That means I’m going to have to sacrifice my pay for 3 days or use my vacation time!
My friend responded: That’s true. Remember, when you do a job yourself you need to account for unproductive factors.

The customer answered: What do you mean by that?
My friend responded: Doing a job completely from start to finish includes time spent to plan the project, pick up materials, travel time, gas, set up time, clean up, and waste disposal amongst other things. That’s all in addition to the actual project itself. And speaking of materials, that’s where we will start on Monday so I need you to meet me at the lumberyard at 6:00am.

The customer answered: At 6am?!! My work day doesn’t usually start until 8am!
My friend responded: Well then you’re in luck! My plan is to start on the deck build by 8am. But to do so we have to start at 6am to get materials picked up, loaded and delivered to your job site.

The customer answered: You know, I’m realizing that a lot more goes in to a job than what a customer sees in the finished project. Your proposal of $4500 is very reasonable. I would like you to handle the project.

CONCLUSION:

When you pay for a job, especially a custom job, (whether it’s a physical project or digital project) you pay not only for the material and the work to be completed. You also pay for:

✔️ Knowledge
✔️ Experience
✔️ Custom Skills
✔️ Tools
✔️ Time to plan
✔️ Time to prepare
✔️ Professionalism
✔️ Work Ethic
✔️ Excellence
✔️ Discipline
✔️ Commitment
✔️ Integrity
✔️ Taxes
✔️ Licenses
✔️ Sacrifices
✔️ Liabilities
✔️ Insurance

If you request a proposal for custom work to be done, please don’t disrespect a service provider by trying to get them to lower their prices.

If their proposal exceeds your budget, there’s nothing wrong with getting other proposals.
Just remember.. you get what you pay for.

👉🏼 SERVICE PROVIDERS: Know your worth and be confident in it.

👉🏼 CONSUMERS: Recognize their worth and be respectful of it.

Sharing this to support all my friends, family and clients who are Entrepreneurs, Business Owners and Tradesman.

My thanks to Claire for this reminder to make sure we are taking all factors into consideration when we are employing a contractor or creating a project of our own.

©Claire Plaisted 2021

About Claire Plaisted

Claire Plaisted was born and brought up in Cheshire, England. Today she is living in New Zealand with husband and three children and loving it.

Claire is a Family History Researcher turned writer and self publisher. Claire is a prolific writer of many different genre’s. Adult Romance, Regency, Detective, Erotic, Young Adult, Sci-fi, Paranormal, Thriller, and Young Children’s adventure stories with a learning curve. Some of these are yet to be published.

Claire also helps other Indie Authors get there books online by formatting them into eBooks or Print. Sharing all book on social media, local newspapers and bookstores.

A small selection of books by Claire Plaisted

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Read more reviews and follow Claire: Goodreads – Website/Publishing/blog: Plaisted Publishing House – Facebook: Claire Plaisted Author – Twitter: Plaisted Publish – LinkedIn: Claire Plaisted

My thanks to Claire for allowing me to share her interesting and useful post today. It would be great if you could share.. thanks Sally.

How you can feature in the series?

  • All I need you to do is give me permission to dive in to your archives and find two posts to share here on Smorgasbord. (sally.cronin@moyhill.com)
  • Rather than a set topic, I will select posts at random of general interest across a number of subjects from the first six months of 2021. (it is helpful if you have a link to your archives in your sidebar by month)
  • As I will be promoting your books as part of the post along with all your information and links so I will not be sharing direct marketing or self- promotional posts in the series.
  • If you are an author I am sure you will have a page on your blog with the details, and an ‘about page’ with your profile and social media links (always a good idea anyway). I will get everything that I need.
  • As a blogger I would assume that you have an ‘about page’ a profile photo and your links to social media.
  • Copyright is yours and I will ©Your name on every post… and you will be named as the author in the URL and subject line.
  • Previous participants are very welcome to take part again.
  • Each post is reformatted for my blog and I don’t cut and paste, this means it might look different from your own post.
  • If I do share a post which contains mainly photographs I will share up to five and link back to the original post for people to view the rest.

N.B – To get the maximum benefit from your archive posts, the only thing I ask is that you respond to comments individually and share on your own social media.. thank you.

Smorgasbord Cafe and Booktore Extra – #Anthology – Autumn Paths – Seasonal Collective of Nine Authors


Dellighted to share the news of a seasonal collection featuring nine authors and their stories. Autumn Paths: An Anthology.

About the Anthology

Nine writers from both sides of the Atlantic, including best-selling and award-winning authors, have created this miscellany of stories.

These tales of family, mystery, intrigue, adventure, and suspense will take you across continents, through time and space in this world and others. With a linking theme of autumn, discover new landscapes, encounter new and intriguing characters, uncover secrets and lies, and witness the resolution of old enmities.

Take the first step on this roller-coaster of an emotional journey, and you won’t be disappointed.

An early review for the anthology

Mr D G Pope 5.0 out of 5 stars A great read  Reviewed in the United Kingdom on 18 October 2021

A really good collection of short stories, mostly from writers I have not come across before.

Each author has thier own individual style and each story is very different from the others although they are all linked by the theme of autumn.

It’s hard to pick out any one story above the others – they are all so good. I liked the way the stories progressed from a gentle human story about life on a farm in Canada, to a good old fashioned murder at the end. In between there’s plenty of variety – adventure, crime, sci fi and more. One of my favourite authors is also in this collection and her story was just as good as her novels.

Not a single story here disappointed and I can recommend this book as a great read.  

Head over to buy the collection: Amazon US –  And: Amazon UK –  Reviews: Goodreads

Featured Authors

Allan Hudson

Allan was born in Saint John, New Brunswick. Growing up in South Branch he was encouraged to read from an early age by his mother who was a school teacher. He lives in Cocagne with his wife Gloria. He has enjoyed a lifetime of adventure, travel and uses the many experiences as ideas for his writing. He is an author of action/adventure novels, historical fiction and a short story collection. His short stories – The Ship Breakers & In the Abyss – received Honourable Mention in the New Brunswick Writer’s Federation competition.

He has stories published on commuterlit.com, The Miramichi Reader, The Golden Ratio and his blog – South Branch Scribbler

Sandra Bunting

Sandra’s publications include two books of short fiction, a poetry collection, a non-fiction book besides articles, poems and stories in numerous literary magazines. Sandra is on the editorial board of the Irish-based literary magazine, Crannóg, and worked at NUI Galway where she set up the Academic Writing Centre and taught Creative Writing and TEFL teacher training. Now living in Atlantic Canada, she is a member of The Writers Union of Canada, New Brunswick Writers Federation, Words on Water Miramichi, the Grand Barachois group Women Who Write and the Galway Writers’ Workshop.
Sand Bunting

Scribbler visit – go HERE

Pierre C. Arseneault

The youngest of eleven children, Pierre grew up in the small town of Rogersville New Brunswick. As a cartoonist, Pierre was published in over a dozen newspapers. As an author, he has five titles published so far. Mysterious Ink

Dark Tales for Dark Nights (2013)
Sleepless Nights (2014)
Oakwood Island (2016)
Poplar Falls – The Death of Charlie Baker (2019)
Oakwood Island – The Awakening (2020)

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

Chuck Bowie

Chuck graduated from the University of New Brunswick in Canada with a Bachelor Degree in Science. His writing is influenced by the study of human nature and how people behave. Chuck loves food, wine, music and travel and all play a role in his work.

His publisher has just launched his latest novel, set in Ireland and England, entitled Her Irish Boyfriend, fifth in the international suspense-thriller series: Donovan: Thief For Hire. He has just completed and published the second novel in a new cozy mystery series, set in a fictional town in New Brunswick, and is now finishing the follow-up in this series.Chuck Bowie

  • – Chuck recently completed tenure on National Council of The Writers’ Union of Canada
  • – Acted as Writer in Residence at Kingsbrae International Residence for the Arts, 2019
  • – Acknowledged as an author of note in the Miramichi Literary Trail installation, 2021

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

S.C. Eston

Steve always had a conflicting love for the fantastical and the scientific, which led him to write both fantasy and science-fiction. He has three published books: Deficiency, The Conclave and The Burden of the Protector. He lives in Fredericton with his wife and children. S. C. Eston 

Scribbler visit – go HERE

Angela Wren

Angela is an actor and director at a theatre in Yorkshire, UK. An avid reader, she has always loved stories of any description. She writes the Jacques Forêt crime novels set in France and is a contributing author to the Miss Moonshine anthologies. Her short stories vary between romance, memoir, mystery and historical. Angela has had two one-act plays recorded for local radio. Angela Wren

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

Monique Thébeau

Monique is retired and lives in Riverview, NB. She has published a murder mystery ‘In the Dark of Winter’ (which she is currently translating) and a French historical novel of her hometown, Saint-Louis-de-Kent. She is as passionate about building suspense in her stories as she is about gardening and being a grand-parent. Monique Thebeau

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

Jeremy Thomas Gilmer

JEREMY is a writer of short fiction and nonfiction. He has been longlisted for the CBC Canada Writes Short Story Prize, won the inaugural Short Story Day Africa Flash Fiction Prize and was selected as the writer-in-residence at the KiRA residency in 2018. Jeremy is the Art and Literature editor-at-large for The East magazine.

Gilmer has spent over twenty-five years as an Engineering Consultant on environmental, energy, and mining projects. Born in New Brunswick, Gilmer grew up in Nigeria, Northern Ireland, and Canada and has lived and worked in over forty countries. He splits his time between Eastern Canada and Brazil.

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

Angella Cormier

Angella grew up in Saint Antoine, a small town in south east New Brunswick, Canada. This is where her love of reading and writing was born. Her curious nature about everything mysterious and paranormal helped carve the inspiration for her passion of writing horror and mystery stories. She is also a published poet, balancing out her writing to express herself in these two very opposing genres.

Previous titles include: Oakwood Island – The Awakening (2020), Oakwood Island (2016), A Maiden’s Perception – A collection of thoughts, reflections and poetry (2015) and Dark Tales for Dark Nights (2013, written as Angella Jacob). Mysterious Ink

Scribbler visit – go HERE.

 

Thanks for dropping in today and I hope you will head over to download a copy of this season anthology.. sounds like a great read… thanks Sally.

 

Smorgasbord Cafe and Bookstore Update – #Reviews – #Canada Margaret Lindsay Holton, #Mystery Fiona Tarr, #Thriller J.P. Mclean


The first review is for the collection published on October 16th by M.L. Holton…Sticks and Stones: Ten Canadian Short Stories

About the collection

Ten Canadian Short Stories from Canadian artist and author, Margaret Lindsay Holton
Eclectic & Electric. Satisfying & Satiating. Delightful literary morsels to feed the mind …

From the INTRODUCTION: “… I am offering these stories to a wide range of readers because sharing well-chosen words expands our minds. New synaptic connections are made. We learn. We become more than we are. And, in these challenging times of reflection and crisis, reading really is a supportive and reassuring Gift that we can offer each other.” – mlholton

“Beautiful. A fine collection of memorable moments.” – “Cinematic.”
“Details described impeccably.” – “I loved these stories immensely.”

Experience isolated island life in the North, inner-city dilemmas, a heart-felt funeral, star-crossed lovers, untidy father-daughter dynamics, stories filled with razor-sharp elders and ever-constant rebellious youth – this collection is about life and the living.

An early review on Goodreads

Sep 13, 2021 M. Walker really liked it

Sticks and stones is a great collection of short stories. The descriptive work in these stories are absolutely wonderful! The book gives you a perspective view a life, love, and everything in between. I really enjoyed it! 

Buy the book: Amazon CA – And: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A selection of books by Margaret Lindsay Holton

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And: Amazon UK – Read more reviews and follow Margaret: Goodreads – Facebook Author/Artist fan pageMargaret Lindsay Holton FacebookTrillium NovelTwitter@TrillLINDSAY

Another new release receiving great reviews is by Fiona Tarr – Presumed Missing (Foxy Mysteries Book 2) –

About the book

Most Runaways are Found Within 48 hours. So where is Gemma?

It’s been nearly two weeks since her disappearance. The police investigation has hit a brick wall until Liz, a high-class escort and part-time private investigator, takes on the case.

Detective Jack Cunningham thought he’d seen the last of Liz. But now her missing girl case has been linked to two interstate murders. With everyone on high alert, Jack and Liz team up once again.

Liz has no choice. She must jeopardise their budding relationship and lead Jack into her dark past to uncover a side of the sex trade he never knew existed. With a deadly predator at large, it’s a risk she’ll have to take, because the clock is ticking for Gemma.

One of the recent reviews for the book on Goodreads

Sep 15, 2021 Jim Phillips rated it five stars

An excellent mystery with a good storyline and a strong female character. A new detective agency keeps Liz very busy, but she still finds time for her former business. A real page turner that I would highly recommend. 

Head over to buy the book: Amazon Au Amazon US – And: Amazon UK

A selection of books by Fiona Tarr

Read the reviews and Buy: Amazon Au Amazon USAnd: Amazon UK Follow Fiona: GoodreadsWebsite :A Time 2 Write – Twitter: @FionaTarr

And the third recently released book to be receiving great reviews is by JP Mclean – a paranormal thriller Blood Mark.

About the book

What if your lifelong curse is the only thing keeping you alive? Abandoned at birth, life has always been a battle for Jane Walker. She and her best friend, Sadie, spent years fighting to survive Vancouver’s cutthroat underbelly. That would have been tough enough without Jane’s mysterious afflictions: an intricate pattern of blood-red birthmarks that snake around her body and vivid, heart-wrenching nightmares that feel so real she wakes up screaming.

After she meets the first man who isn’t repulsed by her birthmarks, Jane thinks she might finally have a chance at happiness. Her belief seems confirmed as the birthmarks she’s spent her life so ashamed of magically begin to disappear. Yet, the quicker her scarlet marks vanish, the more lucid and disturbing Jane’s nightmares become—until it’s impossible to discern her dreams from reality, and Jane comes to a horrifying realization:

The nightmares that have plagued her since childhood are actually visions of real people being stalked by a deadly killer. And all this time, her birthmarks have been the only things protecting her from becoming his next victim.

Blood Mark is the first in a brand-new paranormal thriller series by JP McLean, author of The Gift Legacy series and whose writing has been described as “. . . deftly crafted, impressively original, and inherently compelling from first page to last.”

A recent review for the book

Sep 29, 2021 John Kerry rated it five stars

Books can be powerful and moving, but they can also be just plain entertaining. After all, there would be little incentive to explore the world of fiction if it didn’t offer some joys! Thriller writers have understood this for ages, which is why an action-packed thriller remains the best choice for beach days and airplane travel. But any book can benefit from a bit of genre-bending, which is why we’re partial to the supernatural thriller: that special book that feels like a speculative fiction novel with a bit of thriller thrown in, or vice versa.

Anyone who knows me knows I love all things supernatural…and paranormal…and thriller related. So what’s better than a thrilling paranormal series or a great supernatural read? Well, a paranormal Thriller series of course. So Blood Mark is the first in a brand-new paranormal thriller series by JP McLean reads for you to sink your teeth into. I’ll be honest: I actually just read this book recently and I cannot stop thinking about it. Are you a mystry thriller reader who loves attempting to guess the twist with every new piece of information you receive? Because I am and this novel did not disappoint. This novel was truly addicting to the point where I kept trying to sneak my Kindle into the office so I could keep reading.

JP McLean truly has a way with words and this spooky story is sure to grab you from the start. It really does have all the best elements of a thriller novel mixed with paranormal horror for you to enjoy. Highly Recommended! 

Read the reviews and buy the book: Amazon US – And:Amazon UK

Also by JP McLean

Read the reviews and buy the books: Amazon US – And : Amazon UK – Follow JP Mclean on : Goodreads – Website: J.P. Mclean Author – Twitter: @jpmcleanauthorFacebook: JP Mclean

 

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you are leaving with some books.. thanks Sally.

 

CarolCooks2 weekly roundup…October 17th-23rd October 2021…My Culinary A-Z, The Winners of the Earthshot Prize, Duqqa, Black Bean Burger, Music and S.O.A.P…


If you missed any of Carol Taylor’s posts this week then here is your chance to catch up…Environmental A-Z, Music …it’s National Pumpkin and Apple month in the US…The winners of the Earthshot prize, Peanut Brownie Cookies, Duqqa, Black Bean Buns, S.O.A.P and Music by Coldplay.

There seems to be a problem with the formatting this end but it is fine on Carol’s blog

Retired? No one told me!

My Environmental A-Z, Music …it’s National Pumpkin and Apple month in the US…The winners of the Earthshot prize, Peanut Brownie Cookies, Duqqa, Black Bean Buns, S.O.A.P and Music by Coldplay.

Time is marching on and I am hearing little murmurings about Christmas…sigh…we are now nearing the end of October and Halloween will soon be here… Santa says it’s 62 sleeps…It is nearly time to start making those cakes and puddings if they are to be matured, marzipanned and iced by Christmas…

Does anyone remember the Tunis Cake ? a Madeira cake with chocolate icing and marzipan fruits? I’m thinking of having a go at replicating that this year…

Did you know that in October…? 

If you live in the Northern Hemisphere then you should have or should be planting those Spring Bulbs…I absolutely adore seeing the spring flowers… the first snowdrops, the beautiful narcissi and my favourites bluebells which come…

View original post 1,059 more words

Smorgasbord Posts from Your Archives 2021 – #Potluck – #ChineseNewYear by Miriam Hurdle


Since this series began in January 2018 there have been over 1100 Posts from Your Archives where bloggers have taken the opportunity to share posts to a new audience… mine.

The topics have ranged from travel, childhood, recipes, history, family and the most recent series was #PotLuck where I shared a random selection of different topics. This series is along the same lines… but is a ‘Lucky Dip’

In this series I will be sharing posts from the first six months of 2021 – details of how you can participate are at the end of the post.

This is the first post from children’s author and poet Miriam Hurdle and was published in February 2021 and is a celebration of Chinese New Year.

Chinese New Year – Memories, Calendar, Legend, and Traditions

Chinese New Year begins on Friday, February 12, 2021. It is the year of Ox. The holiday was traditionally a time to honor household and heavenly deities and ancestors. It was also a time to bring the family together for feasting.

Image result for personality of an ox

Childhood Memories

When I was a kid, my favorite family time was Chinese New Year. We had one week off from school and my dad had five days off from work. On New Year’s Eve, Flower Markets took place in major parks. They were open from early evening to 5:00 a.m. on New Year’s Day.

One year, I went to the Flower Market with my older sister and her boyfriend. We lived in western side on the Hong Kong island, and took the tram to Victoria Park in Causeway Bay. By the time we finished walking through the entire market, there was no tram in operation until morning. We followed the tram track and took one hour and thirty minutes to walk home.

Victoria Park Chinese New Year Market

Victoria Park Chinese New Year MarketVictoria Park, Causeway, Hong Kong

I was half asleep even though my feet were moving with one hand holding my sister’s and other hand holding something she bought me. I dropped the bag on the ground many times, bent down, picked it up and continued walking on autopilot.

By the time we got home, my mom had made special food as part of the Chinese New Year ritual. I liked sweet rice balls. We ate and went to sleep for a few hours. On New Year’s Day, everyone put on new clothing. Kids would say “Gung Hei Fat Choi” (Wishing you prosperous) to the parents and adults. My parents and the adults in the neighborhood gave us kids Lucky Money in red envelopes. It was the tradition for the married people to give Lucky Money to the kids and unmarried adults. We visited our relatives on the second, fourth, and fifth day. Kids loved that because we could keep all our Lucky Money.

We anticipated with excitement on the 3rd day. There were three activities became our family tradition. In the morning we went to Tiger Balm Garden, which was a private mansion and garden that eventually became a public garden. After Tiger Balm Garden, we went to the Botanic Arboretum, and visited the Governor’s Garden, which was open to the public during Chinese New Year.

Being able to spend five holidays with my parents was the best thing for me as a kid.

Why Chinese New Year is on a different date each year?

Image result for images of lunar calendar

Chinese New Year is based on the ancient Chinese lunar calendar. It functioned as a religious, dynastic, and social guide. Oracle bones inscribed with astronomical records show the calendar existed as early as 14th century B.C. when the Shang Dynasty was in power.

A lunar calendar is based on the monthly cycles of the Moon’s phases, with the new moon being the first of the month and full moon the middle of the month.

Each lunation is approximately ​29 1⁄2 days. The lunar calendar alternates between 29 and 30 days a month and an average of 354 days a year.

Leap Year

The Gregorian calendar has an average of 365.25 days a year, and therefore 365 days a year with 366 days in a leap year every four years.

Approximately every three years (7 times in 19 years), a leap month is added to the Chinese calendar. To determine when, we find the number of new moons between the 11th month in one year and the 11th month in the following year. A leap month is inserted if there are 13 New Moon from the start of the 11th month in the first year to the start of the 11th month in the next year.

Chinese New Year usually begins when the new moon occurs between January 21 and February 20, and it lasts about 15 days until the full moon arrives with the Festival of Lanterns.

The Legend of Chinese New Year celebration

Image result for lion dance

Lion Dance, Chinese New Year, Hong Kong

According to Chinese mythology, a Nian is a beast lived under the sea or in the mountains. It was unclear whether the Nian was an authentic folk mythology or a local oral tradition. Some sources cited it resembled a lion’s head with a dog’s body. Towards the end of winter, on Chinese New Year’s Eve, the Nian came out to feed on crops and sometime children. All the villagers hid from the beast. One year, an old man came to the village. On the New Year’s Eve, after the villagers escaped, he put red papers up and set off firecrackers to drive off the creature. The next day, the villagers came back to their town and saw that nothing was destroyed. They later found out the old man discovered the Nian was afraid of red and loud noises. It became the tradition the villagers celebrated the New Year wearing red clothes, hanging red lanterns, and red scrolls on windows and doors. People also used firecrackers to frighten away the Nian.

Chinese New Year Traditions and Symbols

New Clothes

The Chinese New Year is a time of change and new beginnings, wearing something new is a symbol of removing the old and welcoming the new. Red is the color for celebrating any happy occasion, as it represents prosperity and good luck.

Lucky Money Red Envelopes

The married people give the Lucky Money red envelopes to children or unmarried adults to bless them with good luck/fortune and happiness/abundance.

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Plum and Peach Blossoms

People decorate their homes with fruit blossoms to symbolize a plentiful crop in the new year. Peach blossoms symbolize long life, romance, and prosperity.

Fish

The homophone of the Chinese word ‘fish’ is the same as the word for ‘surplus’ inferring more than enough. By hanging up fish decorations or eat fish, people hope the New Year will bring wealth and prosperity.

Tangerines and Oranges

Both fruits symbolize abundant happiness. The homophone of ‘tangerine’ is the same for the word ‘luck’ and the homophone of ‘orange’ sounds the same as the word for ‘wealth’. When visiting family and friends, it is a custom to take a gift bag of oranges or tangerines.

Rice-cake — Progression or Promotion

Glutinous rice cake is a lucky food eaten on Chinese New Year’s Eve. This is play on words to infer “getting higher year after year.” It can imply children’s height, rise in business success, better grades in study, or promotions at work.

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Sweet Rice Balls — Family Togetherness

The homophone of ‘ball’ and round shape are associated with reunion and being together. They are favorite food during the New Year celebrations.

I hope you enjoyed finding out something interesting!

Wishing you a

Happy Chinese New Year!

©Miriam Hurdle 2021

About Miriam Hurdle

Miriam Hurdle is a member of the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators (SCBWI). She published four children’s books at twenty-six years old. Her poetry collection received the Solo “Medalist Winner” for the New Apple Summer eBook Award and achieved bestseller status on Amazon.

Miriam writes poetry, short stories, memoir, and children’s books. She earned a Doctor of Education from the University of La Verne in California. After two years of rehabilitation counseling, fifteen years of public-school teaching and ten years in school district administration, she retired and enjoys life with her husband in southern California, and the visits to her daughter, son-in-law, and granddaughters in Oregon. When not writing, she engages in blogging, gardening, photography, and traveling.

Books by Miriam Hurdle

Read the reviews and buy the books:Amazon US And:Amazon UK Goodreads: Miriam Hurdle – Blog: The Showers of Blessings – Twitter: @mhurdle112

 My thanks to Miriam for allowing me to share posts from her archives… and I know she would be delighted to hear from you.

How you can feature in the series?

  • All I need you to do is give me permission to dive in to your archives and find two posts to share here on Smorgasbord. (sally.cronin@moyhill.com)
  • Rather than a set topic, I will select posts at random of general interest across a number of subjects from the first six months of 2021. (it is helpful if you have a link to your archives in your sidebar by month)
  • As I will be promoting your books as part of the post along with all your information and links so I will not be sharing direct marketing or self- promotional posts in the series.
  • If you are an author I am sure you will have a page on your blog with the details, and an ‘about page’ with your profile and social media links (always a good idea anyway). I will get everything that I need.
  • As a blogger I would assume that you have an ‘about page’ a profile photo and your links to social media.
  • Copyright is yours and I will ©Your name on every post… and you will be named as the author in the URL and subject line.
  • Previous participants are very welcome to take part again.
  • Each post is reformatted for my blog and I don’t cut and paste, this means it might look different from your own post.
  • If I do share a post which contains mainly photographs I will share up to five and link back to the original post for people to view the rest.

N.B – To get the maximum benefit from your archive posts, the only thing I ask is that you respond to comments individually and share on your own social media.. thank you.

The Era of an End.


Another wonderful music post from David Prosser with a walk down memory Lane.. Songs from 10CC Freda Payne. The Small Faces, Detroit Emeralds, Julie Driscoll Brian Auger and Trinity… sadly the last in the series but I hope you will head over and also check out the other posts in David’s archives.. #recommended

The BUTHIDARS

Some songs stick out in the memory years after they came out. Some for good reasons, some for bad and that always depends on who you are and these days whether you were born or not in the Dark Ages of 1968 when this particular one came out. This is the only record by them I ever remember hearing.

Julie Driscoll, Brian Ager &Trinity -Wheels on Fire 1968

From 1972 is a brilliant Soul record by the Detroit Emeralds. I’m playing this version rather than losing my lunch over a later version ‘danced’ to by Legs and Coo on our Top of The Pops.

Detroit Emeralds- Feel the Need in Me 1972

Back to 1968 now and a group that had been on the scene for a couple of years and were influential and always around the top. This one was a little different.

Small Faces- Lazy Sunday Afternoon 1968

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Smorgasbord Blog Magazine – Memories, Music and Movies – 1968 – Southsea Seafront – The Funfair – Mary Hopkins and Funny Girl by Sally Cronin


I cannot remember a time when music and movies where not a part of my life.

1968 – Southsea Seafront – The Funfair – Mary Hopkins and Funny Girl

It is 1968 and I am fifteen going on twenty-five. Desperate to move on from being a child to a young woman and time seemed to move so slowly.

The previous year at age fourteen and three months (the earliest that you could work legally), I had begun my stint as a weekend and school holiday council employee in one of their cafes along Southsea seafront.

I worked in a small souvenir kiosk next to South Parade Pier and a short distance from the main cafe that I was employed by. I was under the watchful eye of Betty who I have to say was one of the best managers I have ever worked for. She trained me exceptionally well and by the time a year had passed had every confidence that she could leave me in charge of her little fiefdom for her lunch breaks and day off.

In this, my second year, I was moved into a front of house position responsible for the new whipped ice-cream machine. Talk about fox in the hen house! My job was to fill the central container with a specially prepared formula which was delivered in large plastic containers, switch the machine on first thing in the morning to cool the mixture. There were two sizes of cone and you had the option of sprinkles or a Cadbury’s Flake for what was called a ’99’….

I would spend my weekends and the whole of the summer months serving this delicious treat to the thousands of holiday makers who would pour down from the north of England as the factories shut for August. I have to admit that a fair amount of quality control was required for this job and since I was in charge… Well what can I say?

Working there provided me with extra money and my parents had a rule which I think was sound. If we worked we contributed 25% to the housekeeping, bought our own clothes and then the rest was ours to spend as we wished. I did save around half but this still left me with more than the average pocket money.

What little spare time I had was spent in less sensible pursuits. At Clarence Parade which was just five minutes walk from our house there was a moderately sized fun fair. There were a couple of rides in particular that caught the attention of girls of my age. One was the Wall of Death where leather clad young men on bikes risked life and limb to charge around the inside of a large saucepan scaring the living daylights of us peering over the edge. The other was the Waltzer.. Not so much the ride but the tall, dark-haired attendant who wore a cold ring in one ear and a definite smirk as he viewed his teenage entourage.

My best friend and I would tell our parents that we were going into Southsea to the shops and the slip into the fun fair instead. We might spend an hour in the penny arcade but would eventually and nonchalently saunter over to the Waltzer where we would lean against the wooden railings waiting for our opportunity.

The key thing was to wait until there was only about four of the cars occupied and for those to be filled with adults or families. Then the two of us would slip into one of the cars and wait to be whirled around at great speed. We knew that the dashing lothario would always head straight to the cars with teenage girls esconced and offer his special and extra attention. He would stand on the rolling platform, oiled quiff artfully arranged over one eye, a cigarette hanging from the corner of his mouth and proceed to spin the chair until you were giddy..

Those were the days…

Which brings me to the music that I listened to during those heart quickening months of the summer in 1968. There were a lot of songs to choose from that year including Mary Hopkins with the appropriate Those Were The Days, Tom Jones with Delilah, The Beatles with Hey Jude, Manfred Mann and The Mighty Quinn and of course The Rolling Stones with Jumping Jack Flash.

Here is Those Were The Days by Mary Hopkins which looking back 53 years seems appropriate… shared by Ahmad F Elyan 

Films too were a huge part of my life and I loved going to the cinema. I used to immerse myself in the stories and I was enraptured with Funny Girl with Barbra Streisand and of course the gorgeous Omar Sharif as Nick Arnstein.

Here is Barbra Streisand singing a song that was my theme song from that day forward. Don’t Rain on my Parade

 

Thanks for popping and by and hope that this brought back memories for those of you as old as I am!!
 

Smorgasbord Blog Magazine Round Up – 17th – 23rd October 2021 – Pink Floyd, Movies, Short Stories, Books, Reviews, Anti-Aging, Health and Humour


Welcome to the round up of posts you might have missed this week on Smorgasbord.

Another week flown by and well and truly into autumn.. This week a major job in the garden with the side and back of the house now fully lawned. Not that I can claim any credit except for buying the biscuits to go with cups of tea, but the team who were doing the work barely stopped for a break. Very impressed with the result and they did an amazing job.

That is the last of the major jobs before tackling the internal decoration and waiting for the guy to come and repair the wood stove.. we now have all the spare parts and it will be great to get them off the dining room table…

I have finished my clothes, bags and shoes declutter and next week I shall be starting on the kitchen cupboards…that will be interesting…

The Blog

I am also working on the blog format and plans for 2022.. I shall be entering my 70th year and I have an urge to complete some online and offline projects  to celebrate. I also would like to revamp the blog in some areas, particularly if they are going to drop the classic editor completely so need to get that done before 31st December.

If you do visit the Cafe and Bookstore, you will see that for the rest of the year I won’t be accepting any new authors. My focus will be on the existing authors, their new books and reviews, and I am planning to feature everyone in the annual Christmas Book Fair.

Next year I want to up my own reviews for authors to hopefully help get their books noticed, and I will be doing some new features throughout the year to promote those in the Cafe.

I will do more on my podcast as well and also I plan on turning some of my own books into audio versions.

I began the blog in 2012.. so a ten year anniversary and in whatever the format it might take,  I am looking forward to sharing it with you.

As always my thanks to William Price King, Debby Gies and Malcolm Allen for their contributions this week.. and to you for visiting, sharing and commenting.

On with the show

– Chart Hits 1980 Part Two- Pink Floyd, Billy Preston and Syreeta Wright, Irene Cara, The Detroit Spinners

Yves – Be careful what you wish for! by Sally Cronin

Zoe Looking to the Future

#Choka – Dress Rehearsal by Sally Cronin

1967 – Portsmouth – Englebert Humperdinck – the Graduate

Turning Back the Clock – Part Five – The Hormone Factor Part Three – by Sally Cronin

Women’s Health – The Heart and Stress – Foods and nutrients needed to support you

Weekly Grocery Shopping List by #Nutrient – Part Three – #Calcium to #Manganese

Over the counter eye drops and possible side-effects by Sally Cronin

#Branding – Psychology and Business by Claire Plaisted.

Emotional Challenges of Being a Writer by Jan Sikes

#Pot Luck – #Short Story – Just My Luck by Abbie Johnson Taylor

Making Annual Plans 2020- Darlene Foster

#Poetry – Behind Closed Doors: A Collection of Unusual Poems by Robbie Cheadle

Book Reviews – Rewind 2017 – #Thriller – His Revenge (John Cannon Book 2) – John W. Howell

Tuesday 19th October 2021 – #StudentAchievements Robbie Cheadle, #RoundUp Carol Taylor, #Editing Paula Readman, #Vancouver #Art Rebecca Budd

#Shortstories #Fairies D.L. Finn, #NewBooks Norah Colvin

New Book on the Shelves – Pre-Order – #Romance -Love, Me: A Christmas Wish Novel by Jacquie Biggar

– #Fantasy Richard Dee, #Horror #Suspence Audrey Driscoll, #Paranormal Romance Marcia Meara

#Poetry Annette Rochelle Aben, #Memoir #Flash Pamela S. Wight, #Western #Folklore Staci Troilo

#Transylvania #History Patricia Furstenberg, #Thriller #Haiti Mark Bierman, #poetry #Shortstories Sally Cronin

October 19th 2021 -Hosts Debby Gies and Sally Cronin – Security blankets and Dog Days

October 21st 2021 – Malcolm Allen – Typos and Exposure

 

Thanks very much for dropping in and I hope you will join me again next week… Sally