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Thursday, March 29, 2012

Are you Superstitious?

Most people say they are not superstitious, but are they telling the truth?

Most superstitions are just that - superstitions. But, is there a superstition that deep down inside you believe, but don't tell anyone about it?

According to Merriam Webster, the definition of superstition is:  a belief or practice resulting from ignorance,  fear of the unknown, trust in magic or chance, or a false conception of causation or a notion maintained despite evidence to the contrary.

I think I might say it is when you believe in something you do not understand.

I think many early Appalachian people were superstitious. My grandmother was very superstitious.There were many things they did not understand, so they believed in the superstitions. Some of them were passed down to other generations and they stuck with us. We may know in our minds they are illogical, but we believe in them anyway.

How about things coming in threes. This is one I admit I believe in. I have seen it happen too many times. Usually deaths in the family occur in threes. Accidents, such as airplane crashes, occur in threes. 

My parents would not give you a knife. They would ask for a penny in return.

Whoever opens up a pocketknife must also close it. My husband goes by this, if he hands me one already opened, he makes sure I do not close it before I give it back to him.

How about opening an umbrella up inside the house. I know this could not possibly cause bad luck, but you will never catch me doing this. I about had a tizzy fit one time when one of my kids started to open up one inside the house.

How about stopping a rocking chair from rocking if no one is in it. This is another superstition that is from the old days. They say evil spirits will come in and sit if one is left rocking. Now I know this is not true, call me crazy, but I will stop the rocking of empty chairs. I guess this is just a habit now, not a superstition to me.

I never watch someone leave until they are out of sight. I will turn my head just before they disappear. My mom started me doing this when I was just a teenager.

I know you are aware of many superstitions, I could make a very long list and did so a few years ago on my blog. You can go here and read the post.

But, are there some you believe in and still practice?

Are there any you admit to believing in?

Posted by Janet Smart on Writing in the Blackberry Patch
©Janet F. Smart

Monday, March 19, 2012

God's Rainbows

Into our lives a little rain must fall.

But, then God gives us a rainbow.

©David Smart

Take the time to stop and enjoys the rainbows in our lives.

Posted by Janet Smart at Writing in the Blackberry Patch
©Janet F. Smart

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Kite Flying

            Did you fly a kite when you were a kid? I bet you did. This March has been the perfect time to fly a kite. We've had nice weather and plenty of wind. My kid's column in Two-Lane Livin' this month is about flying kites. I thought I would share it with you.

Fly a kite this spring and fill the March skies with a rainbow of colors
March is the perfect month to launch a dancing kite. But, if winds are too strong or too light, it is difficult to fly them. If your kite sinks tail first, there might not be enough wind. If it comes down nose first, there might be too much wind. A good way to measure the wind is by rustling leaves and waving flags. If you feel the wind on your face, there is probably enough wind to fly your kite.
Kites come in many sizes and shapes. Three common types are flat kites, box kites and soft kites. The most common is the Diamond kite.
Box kites fly better when winds get a little stronger (8-25 mph). But diamond kites fly well in light to medium winds (6-15mph).
Tails on kites help them remain stable. Small kites and flat kites may not last long in the air without tails. But if you want your kite to roll and pitch, then try one without a tail. Use lightweight material or brightly colored ribbons so you can make a longer tail. You can also use a long string with lightweight ribbons tied every 10 inches or so. Tails look pretty fluttering and twirling in the sky above you.
Never fly in lightening or rain. Find a nice open field without any power lines overhead. A happy kite is a kite with a lot of room. But, like Charlie Brown, you must beware of kite-eating trees.
 To launch, stand with your back to the wind and hold your kite up as high as you can. Make sure the nose is pointing up and let go. Do not throw it into the air; just gently release it into the wind. If the breeze is strong enough, the kite will start to rise. Slowly let out on your line and the kite will fly back. Before it reaches the ground, tighten your grip on the line and it will start to rise again. Repeat this process until the kite gets up into steady winds.
If your line becomes slack, bring it in a little. If the kite begins to pull too hard or act unstable, let some line out. To increase altitude, gently pump the line. Each time you pull in, the kite will rise a few feet. Do not be tempted to let out too much line. If your kite gets too high, it is harder for people to see and enjoy it. And, it takes longer to wind in when you are finished.
It takes practice, but soon you will be flying your kite like a pro.
The wind blows past
My kite and I
And lifts it quick
Up in the sky.

With its long tail
It flutters by
And sails about
Up in the sky

With skill and grace
My kite climbs high
And twirls around
Up in the sky.

What kind of kite do you remember flying when you were a child. I flew the simple diamond kites.
Here is a neat PBS site to go to with instructions on how to make a simple kite.

Posted by Janet Smart at Writing in the Blackberry Patch.
©Janet F. Smart

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Weekend Happenings

I haven't accomplished much this weekend except getting sick and snuggling under this warm  WVU throw. Thank goodness for the JGH Clinic at Walmart being open on weekends. I don't think I could have waited until Monday.

 I like to turn out the overhead light and turn on my motion lamp.
Do you remember these from the 1950s and 1960s.
I love them. When I was young, I remember that we had one with a lighthouse on it.
This one is of waterfalls and I was lucky enough to get it at a yard sale quite a few years ago for only $3.
  They are so soothing to watch.

I finally got around to cracking a big bag of black  walnuts that had been out in the garage since December. I got a quart bag out of them and put them in the freezer. I love black walnuts, they are my favorite nuts to put in fudge, brownies, etc. Wish I had a batch of brownies with black walnuts in them right now.

And, last but not least, we discovered a bullet hole in our house! Seems it hit one of our big front porch columns and then swerved and landed in our siding near the garage door. If it had been an inch to the left, it would have  missed the column and went into our sliding glass doors of our family room. Right where I sit at my computer!

We don't know when it happened, but it had to be within the last couple of days (or nights). 
It's a little scary. We could have been outside when it happened and that would have put quite a scare in me. The Sheriff's Department came out and then talked to a few neighbors from the direction of the bullet. They seem to think it might have came from people shooting at coyotes on the ridge. 

We were very lucky that the bad weather missed us on Friday. We got a bad storm that only lasted fifteen or twenty minutes.

What's been happening in your neighborhood.

Posted by Janet Smart at Writing in the Blackberry Patch.
©Janet F. Smart