Proverbial Thursday – Global Wisdoms

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 I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking. 

I hope you think so too.

Continuing on the series of African Proverbs, we have another from Kenya this week:

An empty tin makes a lot of noise

(Kenyan Proverb)

Life, we learn too late, is in the living, in the tissue of every day and hour.

– Stephen Leacock

Stephen P. H Butler Leacock, (1869 –1944) was a Canadian teacher, political scientist, writer, and humorist. Between the years 1915 and 1925, he was the best-known English-speaking humorist in the world. He is known for his light humour along with criticisms of people’s follies. [Wikipedia]

To enjoy the world without judgement is what a realized life is like

– Charlotte Joko Beck

 

What do you make of this week’s proverb? Do you find it is true, in your experience?

And the quotes this week:  Both are about life and how we live it:

Is it possible to live a life complete, without judgement?

Or is judgement a necessary, protection mechanism or an evolutionary aberration?

Japanese Garden

Please do join in the discussion.

I would be pleased to hear all thoughts and comments.

Something to Ponder About this Thursday.

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Invisible Murder – Book Review

With the topic of refugees and terrorism very much in the news, this novel by Lene Kaaberbøl and Agnete Friis, is written for our time and makes for illuminating reading.

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Two impoverished Roma boys are scavenging for something to sell in the ruins of an abandoned Soviet military hospital. Purportedly to improve the lives of themselves and their poverty-stricken families in a rural village of Hungary, one of the boys embarks on a radical plan. Far away in middle class Denmark, Red cross nurse, Nina Borg inadvertently risks her own life and those of her family, to assist a group of Hungarian refugees but little does she know her actions will have disastrous ramifications.

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Source: Economist.com

“Jobbik. It had to be Jobbik, taking to the streets to protest the Jews, Communists and Romas from ‘ruining out nation.’ Lusja straightened herself up pursing her lips as though she had found something disgusting on her shoe. ‘God spare us from any more racist, goose stepping idiots.’ The driver turned in his seat. ‘Jobbik aren’t racists,’ he said. ‘They’re just for Hungary.’ Lusja straightened up in her seat and stared daggers at the driver, 128 pounds of indignant humanism versus 260 pounds of overweight-but-muscular nationalism. ‘And what kind of Hungary would that be?’ she asked. ‘A Hungary clinically scrubbed of all diversity? A Hungary where you can be arrested just because you skin is a different colour? A Hungary where it’s totally okay for Romas to have a life expectancy that’s fifteen years shorter than the rest of the population?’
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Source: Hungarianfreepress.com

A novel that is carefully crafted and well-balanced, allowing you to understand both sides, their personal  motives and furthermore, to feel empathy for the characters woven into the story line: The studious brother who in one brief moment is denied a legal career and betterment for himself, and his family, only because of a racially slanted agenda, his quest to save his wayward orphan brother who, by way of contrast, chooses an extremist, crash-through course of action, and the consequences for each; the innocent bystanders; the well-meaning humanitarians in Denmark, the terrorist thugs and ordinary residents of homogeneous, suburbia integrating with ‘foreigners’.

Are they all helping or hindering the cause? What toll does it take, personally, on those who help the less fortunate, the traumatized, the dangerous, and those on the fringes of society?

In the face of a changing Europe, this Scandinavian novel illuminates some salient points to ponder about inter-related events that shape our modern lives.

Rating 8/10

Other Novels by these bestselling authors: The Boy in the Suitcase

 

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Picky about Pikelets – Anzac Day Traditions

Princess Would it be crass to say that I am the Queen of Pikelets?

Well, I’ve said it, so if I am crass, it is because these Pikelets have won awards for many years at the Royal National Show. Seriously!  If the reactions of others are anything to go by, they really are impressive, well, as much as a pikelet can be, I suppose.  I have always kept my recipe a closely guarded secret, but today being April 25, Anzac Day; a significant, almost sacred national day for Australians and New Zealanders, (that you can read more about here), I’ve decided to spread the love that only an Aussie pikelet can do, and share this recipe with you!!

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Pikelets are very definitely entrenched as a home bake favourite in the vernacular Australian and New Zealand cuisine and are much better than the much touted Anzac biscuits, [find that recipe here] -an oh so popular wartime ‘cookie’ that entered Australian and New Zealand folklore as one of our few traditions that are uniquely our own, but today – today it is all about Pikelets!

Meanwhile, some of you are probably thinking: ” Just, what ARE Pikelets?” Right? Continue reading

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last time Lima

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Where is this located?

Each Monday, I post a mystery photo, (shown above), or occasionally a mystery object. I invite you to leave a comment if you think you know the location of this week’s photograph, (posted above). If you guess correctly, I will link back to your blog when the answer is revealed the following week.

*N.B. If your comment/guess isn’t showing immediately, it is because comments are released on the following Thursday or Friday of the week the Monday Mystery photo, is posted. That way, everyone gets a chance to guess, without peeking at any of the previous guesses.

MMP Peggy April 10

Last time, on MMP,  Peggy  from the blog leggypeggy submitted a fabulous water attraction in Lima, Peru.  Drake from LeDrakeNoir and Ted from RetroRambling guessed the location correctly. Peggy tells us a little more about the structure in Lima:

“The Magic Water Tour in Lima Peru is the current record holder for the largest fountain complex in the world. With 13 distinct fountains spread over eight hectares, the tour opened in 2007 and had 2 million visitors within nine months. This pic shows the 35-metre Tunnel Fountain of Surprises that people can stroll through.”

Thanks Peggy for your wonderful contributions!

This week’s photo was submitted by Pooja of Stories from Europe. New Guest contributors to Monday Mystery Photos, are very welcome. Please flick me an email if you’d like to submit a photo to the Monday Mystery Feature. You will find my email by hovering over my Gravatar and clicking on ‘Complete Profile.’

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last time Brisbane

This week’s photo comes from Peggy, a wonderful blogger from Down Under. Do you know where it might be located? If so leave a comment below.*

MMP Peggy April 10

Each Monday, I post a mystery photo, (shown below), or occasionally a mystery object. I invite you to leave a comment if you think you know the location of this week’s photograph, (posted above). If you guess correctly, I will link back to your blog when the answer is revealed the following week. Continue reading

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Proverbial Thursday – Global Wisdoms

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader. Mostly anonymous, they come to us from past generations and from across cultures. They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb or Saying and a Quote that I find thought-provoking. 

I hope you think so too. Continue reading

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To Honour the Best Dog in the World

TIFFANY :

Your first two years were difficult, but you found your way to Schnauzer Rescue and finally to us. One of our family was a bit reluctant to have a dog, but you quickly won him over with your gentle spirit, your kindness, manners, and limitless trust.

We loved you so much, and you returned this love more than hundred-fold. You found us a whole group of like-minded, sweet, new friends, and great dog friendly places to go.

Strangers stopped us to admire and pat you, often mistaking you for a Boy Dog and we’d have to tell them that they were wrong, that you were our ‘Beautiful Bearded Lady.’

You were such a great dog, so endearing; you knew just how to care when we felt the world was against us. You helped us through the darkest times, you were there often reaching those, who no one else could reach, with your love and empathy.

I miss your intelligence, intuition, elegance and dignity;

I miss the way you wrapped your two front legs around mine when you were feeling anxious;

I miss how you would gently remind us that it was time to go – that light touch of your wet nose on my leg, or that concerted flick of my wrist off the computer mouse with your “schnauze”, when you knew it was time to prepare dinner!

You always had food on your mind!

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You weren’t really impressed when new little sister Rebel came to live with us in your twilight years. She tried to take your bed, your mat, your couch, and your food. In true Tiffany form, you were gentle and forgiving, often taking second place to the younger model, while still guiding this ‘interloper, ‘ in the finer points of Schnauzer Border Patrol Protocols: sniffing out and removing neighbourhood vermin, possums and skinks from the property. The ‘Usurper’ became your ears when you lost your hearing and ended up as a pretty good mate to nap with.

Life wasn’t always fun for you; everyone has their troubles, but you didn’t deserve yours. Two unprovoked attacks frightened you and took you down, a cattle dog that likely mistook you for a sheep – (what an insult!) and the second, a complete ‘blindside’ by a raging psycho Amstaff, who also attacked your new little sister and nearly killed you both. It damaged you and shortened your time with us. We are sad about that.

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Even in your final weeks, you were careful to prepare us for your departure; you slowly withdrew from activities, sleeping more and more, never showing us how sad you were to leave us.

At first we didn’t want to admit you were ill; we didn’t want you to go, but even then, you made it possible for us to hold you close until the last possible moment.

And then, – and then  –   you were gone.

I cry and I cry, but I know that the tears can’t bring you back.

We grieve for your companionship, your trust, the feel of your soft velvety ears, your big soulful eyes and yes, even for the feel of that wet beard that you loved to rub all over our furniture, especially after possum hunting.

It is selfish of us, but we still want you here, with us.

You are resting now in peace.

Our gorgeous Tiffany, forever, you will be our treasured, beloved Schnauzer. We will never forget your spirit and we’ll miss you til the ends of time.

You were the BEST dog in the world.

From your Loving Family   ♥♥♥♥♥♥

 

Someone I will Always Ponder About

 

 

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How to Design your Own Artwork – Space

If we are ever to begin to design our own art, we need an understanding of the various elements and principles of design, and how they combine to create an overall pleasing visual effect. So far, in previous posts, we have looked at Line and  Shape, and how they contribute to art forms. This week, we focus on the element of ‘SPACE’ and find how it can assist to create a better design.

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Week 3 – Space 

Space as an element of art that refers to the area around objects: either Positive Space: that is areas occupied by an object or form and, Negative Space: the area in, between, around, or within objects. Every positive shape is surrounded by negative space.

You can further divide Negative spaces into: –

  – Passive negative space – this separates visual elements, and includes things like margins and the spacing between letters, words, or lines.

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-Active negative space – this draws the viewer’s eye to something, or help viewers focus on the objects that they should see, instead of making their eyes look all over the place.

Notan negative and positive space

 

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Color Your World – Extending my Palette

Over at Jennifer’s blog she is all about colour.

A daily ‘Color Challenge’ is running until next month. Such a challenge can help with understanding colour, its attributes and nuances, and how it makes us feel. Everyone sees colour differently.

Having a good sense of colour can help us make good choices in home decorating, in how we dress, in art and in how we feel, as colours around us can often affect our moods. Just think how we feel when the skies are dark and grey, as opposed to a sunny morning with a blue sky.

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Find your perfect colour combination

There are various colour matching tools on the web, (links below), that can help you find the colour that most matches the one you want for your art/decoration/clothing/craft. You can even upload your own image and analyze the colours there.

Today’s colour is PLUM. A full-bodied colour, often spoken about as if it were a description of a much cherished wine! Here’s why:

104_0427Which one is closest to your version of the colour, ‘plum?’

What colours affect your mood?

Colour Matching Tool

Colour Explorer Tool

#cyw or #coloryourworld

Something colourful to ponder about

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Proverbial Thursday – Words of Wisdom

I find there to be profound wisdom in proverbs, sayings and quotes and I marvel at the way they are so succinct in communicating messages to the reader.

Mostly anonymous, these global words of advice come to us from past generations and from across cultures.

They speak of the experiences of lives lived and lessons learned. Quotes, like proverbs, make us think more deeply about something.

Each Thursday, I post a Proverb, or Saying, and a Quote that I find thought-provoking.

I hope you think so too.

Firstly, this week I have selected a Native American Proverb:

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The quotes I have chosen this week, each revolve around Effort – yet in a different sense.

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Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential.

-Winston Churchill

The less effort, the faster and more powerful you will be

-Bruce Lee

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What do you make of Churchill’s quote? Would you dispute that intelligence and strength are irrelevant?

Can you see the irony in Lee’s quote?

And can we not be wise in the present time? What could the Native Americans be alluding to, with their proverb?

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Proverbial Thursday is Something Serious to Ponder About

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Monday Mystery Photo – Last Week Switzerland

Each Monday, I post a mystery photo, (shown below), or occasionally a mystery object. I invite you to leave a comment if you think you know the location of this week’s photograph, (posted above). If you guess correctly, I will link back to your blog when the answer is revealed the following week.

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Where is this mystery location?

*N.B. If your comment/guess isn’t showing immediately, it is because comments are released on the following Thursday or Friday of the week the Monday Mystery photo, is posted. That way, everyone gets a chance to guess, without peeking at any of the previous guesses.

New guest submissions of Monday Mystery Photos, are very welcome. Please flick me an email if you’d like to submit a photo to the Monday Mystery Feature. You will find my email by hovering over my gravatar and clicking on ‘Complete Profile.’

Mel & Suan and Peggy from leggypeggy.com/ took out last week’s correct answer of Switzerland. Good geographic knowledge, all of you!

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The village of Istenwalt lies on a delta at the south bank of Lake Brienz. It is around 15 km  from Interlaken,  and the municipality includes the hamlets of Furen, Sengg and Isch, as well as a number of scattered farm houses and Faulhorn mountain, which has an altitude of  2,680 m (8,790 ft).

Good luck with this week’s photo.

 Something to Ponder About this Monday

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DIY Mini Note Book Covers

I just love this fun idea of using up beautiful paper. It is practical and functional and you can appreciate the lovely paper far more often than before.

The next best thing to pretty fabric is pretty paper! Although I don’t scrapbook, I love to walk through that department at my favorite craft/sewing stores and couldn’t resist buying some when I saw it marked down.  Of course, then I had to come up with a project for it, so here it is!

Sometimes the paper is so pretty, I am reluctant to use it, but I had no such trouble with this project. Some are planned to be small gifts, others I will use myself and then I can appreciate the paper each time I use them.

The therapeutic and relaxing nature of craft is something we should ponder about whilst stuck in traffic jams, heading to work each week!  🙂 Continue reading

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No Dead bodies – Just a True Story of Courage and Love

 Quite unusually, I’ve been reading a book that has no dead bodies contained within its pages.

(See my book review page here for the lists of crime fiction novels I usually read). 

Biographies of interesting people, are also on my book shelf, but the title of this book, given to me by a work colleague, did not give me any clue as to the intensity of the story within.

 

Horse boy is the story of one family’s journey to heal their severely autistic son. Conventional western therapies were yielding little success and their son’s tantrums and neurological trauma appeared to be  increasing, exponentially.  Spurred on by an accidental discovery that Rowan had a special gift with horses, the family embarks on a monumental adventure that takes them to the outer regions of Mongolia. 

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What is in the Box?

Imagine if you had a box, and it could contain anything, anything at all.

But the contents are things one can not pick up.

What would be in your box?

This was an exercise given to primary school children, aged 7- 12 years. The text in BOLD  italics is mandatory and the rest, part of one’s own fertile imagination.

A great exercise for kids to use their thinking powers to fill an imaginary box. It focuses not on the usual kid’s wish list of Xbox or Barbie Dolls, but rather on abstract thoughts.

A gift that is free.

I pondered about what would be inside my box, which I call:

The Moose’s Box

I will put in my box –

the freedom of children to dream and aspire.

the fortitude and perseverance of a nanny goat,

the sound of boots stomping in freshly laid snow,

the anticipation of holidays and travel.

I will put in my box –

empathy and altruism,

emotional intelligence and joy,

extra doses of joy and happiness,

extract of a young pup’s exuberance.

I will put in my box –

a shifting fog,

wild windy weather,

a thousand giggles,

and the sky at twilight.

I will put in my box –

a black unicorn hiding behind the rainbow

and the toes of a fish or the fins of a horse.

My box is –

shaped like a moose’s horns

and is a kaleidoscope of colours and sounds

tied with imaginary bows of angel’s breath.

In my box –

I will understand the meaning of life and find contentment and love.

What would you put in your box?

Just a little Something Abstract to Ponder About  – What could you put in your box if the contents could not be materialistic?

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Norwegian wood box

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Blind Drawing: Good Practice

Blind or Contour drawing is a favourite with drawing teachers to develop hand-eye communication. It is essentially outline drawing, and blind contour drawing means drawing the outline of the subject without looking at the paper.

A Blind drawing hand using  the right side of brain

The end result doesn’t matter. What is important is carefully observing the subject in order to follow contours and space, with your hand and eye. This trains your brain to tap into its right hemisphere, which aids us in drawing shapes, lines and angles, positive and negative space, instead of objects that we can “name.” Naming objects is the domain of the left brain, logical, realistic but also one that shackles our drawing ability to that of a ten year old.

Above you can see my first blind drawing. My vegetable patch in the back yard. One can just make out the garden edging and the tomato plants, and stakes. I used a soft B pencil which made a nice effect when I drew on the rough Gesso finish of a hard cardboard backed frame. I painted a little colour in a pen and wash technique and then soaked it in tea overnight.  I added a little outlining in pen.  I was surprised by how much my right brain could do without the dominant left hemisphere taking over.

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