catnipoflife

Observe life at its best, listen to life’s songs, embrace life’s bounties, breathe the breath of life and savor life to its fullest!

Awakenings: Virginia & New Hampshire

This Day in History: June 25, 1788

Virginia, “Old Dominion,” “Mother of Presidents,” “Mother of States,” the Birthplace of a Nation

Each of the state nicknames independently, as well as in combination, attribute to Virginia being declared the “Birthplace of a Nation”. Virginia is an American history icon! This is where our country began…the founding of Jamestown on the banks of the James River, our first permanent English colony, in Virginia in 1607 – 13 years before the Pilgrims landed at Plymouth in Massachusetts. So much American history, so many historical sites. No wonder it is said Virginia’s history IS America’s history!

Source: awakenings2012.blogspot.com

Bit of Trivia: Maine, Maryland and Massachusetts have a state cat, Maryland also has a state dinosaur, West Virginia has a state rattlesnake and Virginia has a state BAT!

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New_hampshire_in_autumn

Also in June, 1788 is the establishment of New Hampshire as the 9th state to join the union. Did you know New Hampshire was first named North Virginia, and it was once under the jurisdiction of Massachusetts?

This Day in History: June 21, 1788

New Hampshire, the Granite State, the Mother of Rivers, the White Mountain State, Switzerland of America*

*This state is also called the Switzerland of America, on account of the salubrity of its climate; its wild and picturesque landscapes; its lakes and rapid streams. The celebrated White Mountains, in the northern part of the state, are of great elevation, and afford the grandest display of mountain scenery in our country. [From Hayward's New England Gazetteer of 1839]

Source: awakenings2012.blogspot.com 

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Awakenings: West Virginia: The Mountains are Callin’

This Day in History: June 20, 1863

West Virginia, the Mountain State

 

West Virginia’s karst topography contributes to its cool trout waters, diverse landscapes, whitewater rapids, historic caves and lost world caverns. The state motto of West Virginia Montani Semper Liberi or “Mountaineers Always Free” was adopted in 1863 reflecting the character and beliefs of the citizens of the state at the time of its adoption. Being known as the land of rugged mountains (the scenic Allegheny Mountains cross the state), it is most appropriate for West Virginia to be nicknamed The Mountain State.

Source: awakenings2012.blogspot.com

On June 20, 1863, in the midst of the Civil War, West Virginia became the 35th state to join the union. West Virginia is the only state in the Union to have acquired its sovereignty by proclamation by the President of the United States. Statehood was proclaimed by President Abraham Lincoln.

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Awakenings: Arkansas: Natural Wonder

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

This Day in History: June 15, 1836

 Arkansas, the Natural State, the Land of Opportunity

Arkansas is famous for its natural scenic beauty, clear lakes and streams, and abundant wildlife. Since 1995, it has been officially known as the Natural State. This nickname replaced the official Land of Opportunity nickname adopted in 1947 following the slogan, Arkansas Is a Natural, which was used to promote tourism and outdoor recreation. The state motto of Arkansas is “The People Rule.” As with many state names, origins can be traced to native American Indian languages. The name Arkansas is the French interpretation of a Sioux word: acansa, meaning “downstream place.”

As part of the land acquired in the Louisiana Purchase,which nearly doubled the size of the United States, Arkansas became a separate territory in 1819. Nearly twenty years passed before it achieved statehood in 1836 becoming the 25th state (13th slave state) to join the union. Arkansas withdrew from the United States and was the 9th state to join the Confederate States of America during the Civil War.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

“Because of its location as a gateway to the Wild West, Arkansas didn’t luck into the romantic Southern moonlight-and-magnolia image. Rather, it became known as a rough crossroads where people — and outlaws — hid in the mountains, married cousins and sold moonshine.” Source: Arkansas Hillbilly Image

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: South Carolina: The Shag & Shad Roe

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

This Day in History: May 23, 1788

South Carolina, “The Palmetto State”

South Carolina was the first state to ratify the Articles of Confederation, and the 8th state to ratify the US Constitution on May 23, 1788. South Carolina later became the first state to vote to secede from the Union which it did on December 20, 1860. It was readmitted to the United States on June 25, 1868. The state motto of South Carolina “Dum Spiro Spero” means ‘While I breathe, I hope.”

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

What about the shag and shad roe? Where do they fit in the scheme of things in South Carolina? The answers and more @Awakenings…

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: ‘Copycats’ & Fun Facts

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

Today in Music History: April 25

It’s not just about the music, the words and the melodies, but also the stories behind the music and the performances that set the stage for MTV and DVDs yet to come. Some of the most interesting trivia comes from songs of the past that were covered by other artists whose renditions are more remembered than the original. For some, the beginning we know may not be a song’s beginning at all.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Who do you associate with the song ‘Such a Night’ – Johnnie Ray, The Drifters, Elvis, The Four Lovers? Wait a minute. Four Lovers? Never heard of them…Oh! They are the Four Seasons! What about ‘Stuck on You’ – did you know there is more than one version? And the music goes on beating to the rhythm of the changing times…

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: Titanic – Day 5: Tragedy Strikes

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

The unthinkable happened. The unimaginable occurred. At 2:20 am (2 hrs 40 mins after striking the iceberg), the ocean vessel once deemed unsinkable leaves around 1,517 souls in the depths of her final wake. The water in the area in which Titanic sank was lethally cold, a temperature of 28 °F (−2 °C). A human body will perish in fifteen minutes or less in such water, even for people young and physically fit.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Thus, the end of the Titanic but not the end of her story.

See on www.awakenings2012.blogspot.com

Follow the journey:

Awakenings: Titanic – Day 1: Setting Sail
Awakenings: Titanic – Day 2: Journey Underway
Awakenings: Titanic – Day 3: Upon the Sea
Awakenings: Titanic – Day 4: Iceberg!
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Awakenings: Vermont: Magical Landscapes of Green

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

This Day in History: March 4, 1791

On March 4, 1791 Vermont became the 14th state as the politics of slavery threatened to divide the United States. Vermont’s nickname The Green Mountain State is a direct relationship to the Green Mountains mountain range, which runs south to north specifically within this U.S. state. It is home to many beautiful and natural wonders being truly one of those green magical places. Vermont is the leading producer of maple syrup in the U.S.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Find yourself, lose yourself, anything goes
Take off your shoes, exercise your toes
Run the hills, fields, everything in between
Bathe in the magical landscapes of green

See on www.awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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At the Close of Valentine’s Day

Heart-TransparentAs most of you know, catnipoflife has a sister site, Awakenings whose focus is on history and  America – embracing the past, empowering the present, enriching the future. While Valentine’s Day does not have its original roots in American soil, its runners run deep throughout the nation.

Below is an abbreviated closing for this Valentine’s Day from Awakenings. To see the entire post, just click HERE!

A step back in time...

To truly understand Valentine’s, you must step back in time to 278 A.D. during the time of the Roman Empire. There are many legends and myths surrounding this day, some Pagan, others related to Christianity. Each of these legends vary on its connection to romance but several carry the name Valentine with each being martyred. One legend has the origin of Valentine’s day ending in the death and beheading of Valentine, a holy priest in Rome.

Rome was besieged with many unpopular and bloody campaigns. There was a strong attachment of the men to their wives and families thus a strong reluctance in joining the military forces of Claudius the Cruel, 42nd Emperor of the Roman Empire.

To change the situation, Claudius banned all marriages and engagements in Rome. This was not taken lightly by Valentine, the holy priest. Valentine continued to perform marriages and honor engagements in secret for young lovers until his deeds were discovered. Before going further keep in mind that Emperor Claudius was known as Claudius the Cruel so he did not take lightly the services performed by Valentine behind his back.

The first Valentine’s Day message of love…

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It was upon the orders of Claudius that Valentine was put to death – beaten first, then beheaded. This occurred on February 14 on or about 268-270 A.D. Legendary beliefs show while in jail, Valentine became friends of the jailer’s daughter. He supposedly left a farewell note for her signed “From Your Valentine.” Thus, the first Valentine’s Day message of love.

It was not until after his death when Valentine was named a saint for his many services during his lifetime.

Declaration of February 14 as Valentine’s Day…

At the end of the 5th century, Pope Gelasius declared February 14 to be St. Valentine’s Day, and centuries later romantic authors like Geoffrey Chaucer and Shakespeare helped seal the deal with references to the day in their works. 

At the close of Valentine’s Day…

Thus, we are at the end of yet another Valentine’s Day where its original color ran red with blood instead of roses! In today’s society, this day has been set aside as a loving day with the only blood drawn being that from the prickly stem of the rose.

As you look ahead, don’t leave the loving thoughts of Valentine’s Day behind. Every day can be a Valentine’s Day as long as there is passion in your heart and a loving spirit in your soul!

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Awakenings: Saddle Up!

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

This Day in History: February 14, 1912

Saddle Up! This is America, this is Arizona!

Arizona’s state motto is Ditat Deus in Latin, translating as “God Enriches.” Its nickname is The Grand Canyon State named for its unmatched vistas riding along its rim. The grand canyon was formed by the uplifting of the Colorado plateau and erosion caused by the Colorado River over a period of 6 million years. Nearly two billion years of the Earth’s history can be observed in the layers of exposed rock. Prehistoric native Americans built settlements within the canyon and its many caves. The Pueblo people considered the Grand Canyon a holy site and made pilgrimages to it.

Sharla Shults‘s insight:

Watch National Geographic’s breathtaking video, Amazing Flight Over the Grand Canyon. Priceless!

See @Awakenings…

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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Awakenings: Land of Many Changes

See on Scoop.itAwakenings: America & Beyond

This Day in History: February 14, 1859

Two states joined the union on February 14 in different years, of course. First up today is Oregon, The Beaver State.

Oregon Flies With Her Own Wings and is a Land of Many Changes…

Sharla Shults‘s insight:
Land of Many Changes

From the rugged seacoast
Inland to high mountain passes
A swath of forest hills
Gather as though in masses

Continued @Awakenings

See on awakenings2012.blogspot.com

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