Welcome to Awakenings

Life IS history in the making. Every word we say, everything we do becomes history the moment it is said or done. Life void of memories leaves nothing but emptiness. For those who might consider history boring, think again: It is who we are, what we do and why we are here. We are certainly individuals in our thoughts and deeds but we all germinated from seeds planted long, long ago.

Thursday, February 28, 2013

A View from a Child’s Eyes

Embrace the past...

Chinese Jump Rope 1960s-1980s

First Books (n.d.)

Kermit (b.1955) and Miss Piggy (b.1974)

Heidi - 1880 until...

Roll Caps 1945-1965
School Reading 1930s-1970s

Seseme Street 1969 until...
 Let's go back even farther...

A View from a Child’s Eyes

Early Modern PeriodSeventeenth Century (16001699)

Puritan beliefs imbedded values based upon strict lessons on behavior and courtesy 
with leisure time coming only after work was completed. 
Games being played four hundred years ago are still common today!

Strict obedience to Father
I honor with respect
Ne’er to be usurped by Mother
Nor treated with neglect

Humble and submissive
I will always be
Ne’er conscious of free will
Else to suffer thee

During any mealtime
I will stand, not sit
Ne’er uttering a word
Else chance being hit

Once chores dutifully done
I’ll turn to schooling rules
Ne’er being disrespectful
Else face thy switching tools

With feather pen in hand
I trace the alphabet
Ne’er forgetting prayer
Else evil will be met

While learning to read and write
I also learn math
Ne’er making many mistakes
Else accept thy wrath

With little playtime allowed
I welcome rest from work
Lummelen, all hid and hop frog*
Ne’er will I ever smurk

*Keep away, hide and seek, and leap frog

©2012 Awakenings
  Sharla Lee Shults

What was your favorite past-time?

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Awakenings Author Interview

AwakeningsClaire Cappetta, author of A Broken Ring is featuring, Awakenings, on her blog today. Please visit Claire's site and leave comments. I am offering my book as a Kindle Giveaway to one lucky commenter! Yippee!! :-)

Thank you, Claire,

for being so supportive of my writing and providing this wonderful opportunity!

Monday, February 25, 2013

Dance your heart away: SHAG!

Summer time, open-air beach parties, warm nights, cold beer and a hot date! With or without the beer, that was the era of the Carolina shag. An outdoor pavilion with the roar of the ocean waves in the background set the stage to dance your heart away hand-in-hand with your favorite gal or beau.

The roots of the shag are grounded in a cross-pollination of black soul music and club dancers in Myrtle Beach, SC with fun-loving carefree 40s white teenagers. The radio stations of the 40s did not broadcast black music so the kids had to flock to the beaches to play the music on jukeboxes.

Having been grounded in the 40s, the shag became THE dance of the 50s. 

There is, however, evidence those roots were possibly established well before the 40s. Even as far back as colonial times lies evidence of slaves dancing aboard slave ships for exercise. Not to be outdone, the white sailors began to show off their own moves. This resulted in yet another cross-blending that eventually led to the Lindy Hop, a type of swing dance. Onward into the early twentieth century evidences the jitterbug associated with various types of swing dances, including the Lindy.

A bit of evolution...

"The Lindy Hop was performed by young kids in the twenties, jitterbug in the thirties, swing in the forties, and rock and roll/​bebop/​Carolina shag in the fifties. In the sixties, young kids broke away and danced animal caricature dances; in the seventies they danced the hustle.” Each of these dances is characterized by a unique set of moves that are suited to the music of the period. “The music of the seventies lent itself to the development of the hustle just as the music of the twenties lent itself to the development of the Lindy Hop."
So what makes the Shag the Shag? It's all in the moves...slowing down the original tempo of the jitterbug and incorporating sexier, looser movement.

Let's Shag!

 Compare to the Jitterbug!

 Are you ready? Dance your heart away!

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

Related Articles: 

The Evolution of the Shag

Swing, lindy, jitterbug, shag, and hand-dancing

Carolina Shag History

The History of the Shag 


Wednesday, February 20, 2013

50s Teen Scenes

It was the end of WWII. However, the world felt far from safe: impending war in Korea, frightening talk of Communism, threatening talk of nuclear war. Even amid new fights and threats, post-war America's priority was family: feeling safe and secure within structured communities.

Elvis Presley = 1954
But, where did that leave the teenager? The teen was between...sandwiched in between child and young adult. In fact, the term 'teen-ager' was coined during this time the 50s, the era where the teens started to hear music about their world, love songs about high school sweethearts, wild parties and fast cars. This was the age of rock 'n' roll the devil's music of Elvis Presley, the rebelliousness of James Dean. A new culture was born and there was no stopping it! Long live rock 'n' roll!

James Dean - 1954

"What I remember most about the 50s were rules.  Rules, rules, rules... for everything.  Rules about clothes — which clothes you could wear when.  Rules about church.  Rules about streets.  Rules about play. The dance rules were different.  Dance with girls and hold this hand, but then... you could do whatever you wanted to do!  Dance looked like freedom.  The only freedom this kid knew." John McKeon
Embrace the Past...

Images from 1950s Unlimited...


 The dance craze: The Jitterbug

Want to learn the jitterbug?
Groovie Movie (1944). Funny jitterbug instructional video.

Monday, February 18, 2013

City Pharmacy Sells Gasoline?

Embrace the Past...

Did you know the first places to sell gasoline/petrol were pharmacies as a side business? That's right, pharmacies! The city pharmacy in Wiesloch, Germany was the location of the first gas/petrol station. In 1888, Bertha Benz refilled the tank of the first automobile on its maiden trip from Mannheim to Pforaheim.

Here are just a few as we step back in time...

 See these in larger versions plus more @ http://hipspics.freewebspace.com/gas/gas.html

Did you know?

A facility which sells fuel and usually lubricants for motor vehicles is known as... 

~filling station, fueling station, garage, gasbar (Canada), 
~gas station (United States and Canada), 
~petrol bunk or petrol pump (India),  
~petrol garage, petrol kiosk (Singapore), 
~petrol station (United Kingdom, Ireland, Malaysia and Hong Kong),  
~service station, or servo (Australia)

What do you remember about the old gas stations? Do you recall the "full service" stations?

Sunday, February 17, 2013

How do you celebrate Presidents' Day?

What does Presidents' Day mean to you? Do you have the day off from work? Are you seeking out the best deals and sales? Are you into Clothing and Accessories, Shoes and Purses, Home and Garden, Health and Well Being, Tech/Computers/Accessories? Slow down. . .actually, STOP!

While Presidents' Day is renown for its 'deals and sales', there is something much more special about this day that unfortunately often goes unnoticed. Everyone knows it is an American holiday celebrated on the third Monday in February. BUT, what is it really celebrating and has it always been this day?

Embrace the Past...

In 1885, this day was set aside in celebration of President George Washington's birthday. It was traditionally celebrated on February 22, the actual day of Washington's birth. In 1971, under the leadership of President Richard Nixon, the Uniform Monday Holiday Act attempted to create more three-day weekends for the nation's workers. Thus, the third Monday of February was supposedly designated as Presidents' Day. But, not so fast, there is more to the story...

Not only was Washington born in February but also another great U.S. President, Abraham Lincoln, who was born February 12. Having two Presidents' birthdays so close together created problems. February is the shortest month of the year and here were two holidays which potentially would mean two school-free days, two Mondays off from work and sales, sales, sales on both days. Actually, that sounds pretty good, doesn't it? 

Of course, we know the celebration of two holidays so close together did not become reality. Only the one day evolved with that day neither actually being Washington's birth date or Lincoln's birth date but instead an arbitrary date known as Presidents' Day.

Empower the Present...

For the most part, Presidents' Day is a federal holiday now celebrating all United States Presidents, both past and present. Whether you call it Washington's Birthday, Lincoln's Birthday or Presidents' Day, it is all the same day and celebrated primarily in recognition of the United States of America's first President, George Washington.

Enrich the Future...

Make a special effort this Presidents' Day to honor the leaders of our great nation, our Presidents, both past and present. Become an example that can be passed on for generations to come as to how this day should truly be celebrated. Be sure those you meet and greet on this holiday know what this day is all about and that it goes much deeper than bargain basement prices on a single day of the year.

My contribution is a video poem in honor of seven of Our Founding Fathers, many of whom went on to become President of the United State.

Bottom Line...

How do you plan to celebrate Presidents' Day? It is much, much more than simply the sales, sales, sales that are so widely advertised. What better time to pay tribute to America and our founding fathers than on this day!