Wednesday, June 8, 2016

A Historical Moment

Last night I stayed up, into the "wee hours" of this morning, with my eyes glued on to my television, to view History In The Making.

For the first time in these United States of America, my adopted country, a woman from a major political party, became a presumptive nominee for President. 

A historical event!

A milestone!

To think that merely a hundred years ago, women were not allowed to vote.
We have come a long way.
I am proud of Hillary Clinton!
I am proud for womankind! 
I am proud of being a woman!

True, this is not the first time that I witnessed History in the Making. 
Remember -
I had been through Civil Wars in China, had lived under Japanese Occupation, had lived through World War II, migrated to Hong Kong, immigrated to the U.S. . . .
In my eighty-seven years, I have "lived" a lot of History. 

When I was a little girl, my parents never said to me that I could be anyone I wanted to be, or do anything that I wanted to.
No. That was not in the cards. 
I was to be groomed to marry someone from a Good Family, by which it meant a well-to-do family. I was to be a good wife, a good daughter-in-law, and a good mother. When time came to be the lady of the house, I was to run a smooth household.

At that time, the question of what I could do with my life was not ever discussed. 
No one had asked me, "what do you want to do when you grow up?"
If anyone one did, I would not have an answer.
I lived a very sheltered life, and I was not expected to do much thinking for myself.

Circumstances did change.
I did go on and had further education. Abroad, no less.

I did end up working as a  Librarian in Hong Kong, before I got married.

However, after immigrating to the U.S., my husband, being basically very old-fashioned, said to me that he did not want me to work outside the home. He was the bread-winner and would provide for the family. I was too busy trying to learn how to be a new mother, without domestic help - a daunting job as far as I was concerned at that time. I did not think I could manage been a mother and having a career . . .

Life did change for me later. Much later.

I did have a career, as a Realtor.

I am glad I did. 

And, my daughters grew up to have careers.

So, Three cheers for Hillary!

Monday, February 8, 2016

Chinese New Year

Happy Chinese New Year to all!

2016 is the Year of the Monkey. 

Persons born under this sign are usually successful in any field they choose, good at making deals, and skilled in business and diplomacy. Decisions are easy; they have plenty of common sense. Monkey people read extensively, remember everything they read, and consequently are well informed. If a monkey person is allowed to pursue his own instinctive course in life, he stands a good chance to becoming famous. However, monkeys tend to talk too much, driving friends away with their overlong explanations and endless chatter. They are sometimes contemptuous of people less gifted than they. Their inclination to appease rather than fight is a predominant characteristic.

My eleven-year-old grandson is a Monkey. We will see how much this applies to him.

According to Chinese legend, Buddha asked all of the world's animals to pay him a visit, promising those who showed up a magnificent gift each. Only twelve animals responded to his call. They came in this order:
           the rat, 
           the ox,
           the tiger,
           the dragon, 
           the snake, 
           the horse, 
           the sheep,
           the monkey, 
           the cock, 
           the dog, 
           and the boar.

Buddha's reward to each was to set aside a full year in honor if each one. The animal year will rotate forever, starting with the rat. The Orient God then decreed that humans born under each sign would have the talents, traits, and flaws of their animal.

My understanding is: the time of the day when the child is born under affects his astrological character.

I am a Dragon.

We Dragons are given the gifts of health, energy, courage, and sensitivity.

The Dragon is said the have these blessings: virtue, harmony, riches, and longevity. Of  all the signs, this one is the most eccentric. Dragon people are susceptible to flattery, excitable, and enormously stubborn.

I will let those who know me to be the judge of all these characteristics!

Happy Chinese New Year To you!

Saturday, January 16, 2016

Coloring Books

There is a definite Fervent Fever for Coloring books - not the kind that my kids had when they were in grade schools.
This is much more sophisticated.

There are the ones with flowers, 
               the ones with animals, 
               the ones with buildings, 
               the ones with landscapes, 
               the ones with people, 
               the ones with symbols, 
               the ones with abstract forms, 
               and so on.  

My neighbor, a retired educator, received such a coloring book with a set of colored pencils, from her sister. I suppose her sister thought that she needed such activities to occupy her time now that she is no longer working. Truth be told, I think my neighbor is now busier than ever, doing a lot of things. 
I am not saying that she did not like her job. She definitely did. She was a very good teacher. But she has other interests as well. 
Now she has time to do the things that she had wanted to do but had not had time to do before retirement.

The last time I saw her, she told me that she had been too busy to have tried her hands at working on her Coloring Book yet.

I, myself, received a similar book from one of my daughters (Not with pencils, since she knows that I have plenty of them, as well as all different kinds of colored markers, colored brush pens, etc. After all, I have been painting and drawing for a number of years.) I did do a few sheets. 

Believe it or not, during Christmas time when my other children, in-laws, and grandchildren, came home, some of them tried their hands in doing some pages of My coloring book. 

Was I surprised? Yes and no.

One of them said that it was a challenge. 
Another said that it had a calming effect on him.
Mind you, these are not "kids".

So it was not a total surprise to me when I read that one of the big craft stores sold some 27 millions dollar's worth of Coloring Books and Related items this year. Wow!

In this day and age, when even the little ones are hooked on electronics, why is a simple coloring book became such a Draw? 
(No pun intended.)

Remember the hula-hoop?
You may be too young.
It was such a popular item - a simple plastic hoop - that took the world by Storm.  

But Coloring Books?

Would someone enlighten me as to Why?

Perhaps one of us may Reinvent the wheel again!

Sunday, January 10, 2016

Make Goals For The New Year

My friend, the Newly-elected President of my Writers' Club told us that instead of making New Year's Resolution for 2016, we should try to make Goals for the Year in the following areas:
  - Financial
  - Health
  - Fitness
  - Career
  - Relationships
  - Family
  - Education
  - Faith
  - Others
Write it down.
Then at the end of the year, take out the written list that we have made, and check to see where we stand. 
Have we met the goals?
Or, not?

What a great idea!
We should all try it. Don't you agree?

Thank you, Kathy.

So here are my goals:

Financial - Have my finances in order always. True, I am retired and am not concentrating on savings. That does not mean that I could or should spend more than my income. "Saving for the rainy day still applies."

Health - Boy, don't I know that Health is most important. Without good health, you have nothing. So, eat right, get enough rest, try to live with as little stress as possible. Simplify my life.

Fitness - Exercise! I failed in this department. I will try to do better - ride my stationary bike and do Yoga.

Career - It does not mean that I have to go out and get a job.  My painting is my career now. And writing my Blog. One has to have something to get up for everyday. Right? Yes, I am passionate about my painting. I am in a zone when I am making Art. I am at peace. So I will continue doing so for as long as I can.
I will continue with writing my Blog as well.

Relationship - With people?
I am a bit too straight forward, saying and telling like it is. May be I should "Tone Down" a little. Count to Ten before making a comment.
It is not that I care what people think of me or my remarks, but I do need to think of the others' reactions to what comments I make. Talk Less!

Family - I have little complains in this area, except that I wish my kids will "get along" with one another. I cannot interfere too much though. So can I "chicken out" on this? Merely let them know that I do give them Unconditional Love.

Education - Does one ever stop learning? I should continue to learn - the world is my University. Watching TV is not as bad as some make it. I learn a lot from the TV shows, especially from the documentaries. I do need to learn to use my computer and my iPad better.

Faith - I have faith in me. Never lose Hope in Humanity.

Others - My father used to tell me, "There are always those who are better than you, and there are always those who are not as fortunate as you." I will try to do my little part to help whose who are less fortunate, in health and otherwise, than I am.

Now, we will find out at the end of the Year to see how I do.

Would you like to do the same?

Saturday, January 9, 2016

Happy 2016

Happy New Year to all!

It has been a while since I wrote. 

My encounter with my "breathing Problem' threw me a loop and turned my life upside down for a long while. I am much, much better - almost back to my old self. Everyone says that I am doing well for my age. I better try to live up to it.

I will soon be 87. I am trying to age with dignity!

I tested myself and attended two art workshops - one a two-day oil painting in November and another a very intensive four-day oil painting workshop in December. The first one left me pretty worn out. The second? Well, I manged with what you would say with "flying colors". Of course, I crashed for a bit after the four long days. 
I actually ended up with three pretty presentable paintings, after working on all of them at home after the workshop.

So now, I should resume my normal life, with a little less productive events.

Here are the paintings: