Tuesday, February 26, 2008

Chit-Chat Over Coffee Swirls (9)

To start the morning off I would like to quote this expression that was said by Philander Johnson, in 1895, "Oh, what a blamed uncertain thing this pesky weather is; It blew and snew and then it thew, and now, by jing, it's friz"

Looking at the weather channel this morning, it seems like it is going to be another one of those days of freezing rain, etc. For those of us who have to go to work,traveling in bad weather conditions, is not something to which we have to look forward to. At least, we should be grateful that its not a blizzard like in 1888, which occurred during March 11-14, killing about 400 people and, dumping 21 inches of snow in New York City. For an overview of this blizzard, I have provided this link for your benefit:

Americans have always talked with despair and horror about the weather. We have been a witness to the total destruction that has come about from hurricanes that have battered our shores, causing floods and devastation such as in "hurricane Katrina" and hurricane Andrew in Miami", leaving thousands homeless and billions of dollars worth of property damage. How many people vow each year to leave the intense cold of the mid-west and new England States, to move to sunny Florida, only to find themselves in another weather crisis. Let's face it no matter which part of our country we move to, there is no escape from these weather conditions.

Although the early colonists were acquainted with rain, sleet, and hail in England, I don't believe they were forewarned of the severe American climate, with its blizzards, tornadoes, and Hurricanes. Its interesting how some of the terms that we are familiar with today, such as "snow shoes," and "flurry of hail" have dated back to 1664 and 1686. I am going to list a few such as: "snow storm-1771," snow shower-1779," "snow plow-1792," snowed in-1859" and snowed under which was used by 1880. Not until 1870 did the term "blizzard" come to mean a snowstorm with gale winds and low temperatures. The word "hurricanes" which in spanish is "huracan" means "big wind". "Tornadoes" is (Spanish tronada, thuderstorm, influenced by another Spanish word tornar, to twist), 1804.

"New Englanders have called a gale wind from the northeast a "northeaster" since 1774, and we have referred to a strong, cold wind from the north as a "norther" since 1776."

"The first weather forecasts in New York City newspapers was published in 1853. The weather bureau was not established by the Signal Corps until 1870. After being part of the Department of Agriculture from 1891 the Weather Bureau was moved to the Commerce Department in 1940, becoming the National Weather Bureau in 1970."

Articles of weather conditions affecting the New England States as well as New York City such as extreme heat, thunderstorms, floods, snow storms, ice storms, extreme colds and the famous hurricane of 1938 all find their way to thehistorybox.com

So for us here in the Northern states, brrrrrrrrrr..... bundle up because baby, its cold outside. Oh, and most of all, don't leave the house without your ice-scraper and cell phone too.

contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Fleeing From Communist Oppression: The Great Cuban Exodus 1959

Today, the media announced "Aging Cuban leader Steps Down From Power. End of Half A Century Rule." This brings to mind an article which I had written on the subject matter of "Fleeing From Communist Oppression: The Great Cuban Exodus 1959," In this narration I describe the experience of one man who fled for his life as well as the political situation in Cuba that prompted the mass exodus during 1959. I also mention how the Cuban people in America over the years have made an enormous and outstanding contribution of their talents, knowledge and creative abilities to the American culture, for the benefit of all, even being elected to the U.S. Congress, such as Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, Lincoln Diaz-Balart both of Florida and most recent newly elected Senator Robert Menendez from New Jersey.

If you would like to read this narration, click here.

To contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net

Monday, February 18, 2008

Table Of Contents : Mimi Speaks Blog

There are many people who love to read blogs, but just don't have the time to waste, or are in the mood to go through it's entire contents trying to find something that may be of interest to them. Usually when people approach a blog, they like to go quickly from one thing to the next. As for actually reading the text, there is little evidence of that unless the subject matter should catch their eye, then it becomes worthwhile.

Since my blog was started in 2007, there have been postings of 201 tid-bits of information, which talk about history, life situations, goals and success. So my dear reader, for your benefit, I am making every attempt to improve the navigation to this treasure trove of information as quickly as possible. For this purpose I have created a table of contents divided by categories, for easy accessing. However if there is something that may catch your eye, I suggest you find yourself a comfortable chair, and while you're at it, grab a steaming hot cup of coffee and a bagel with cream cheese and you'll be all set to settle down for a while. So happy reading.


(A. ) Getting To Know Mimi (B.) N.Y.C. History (C.) East Harlem
(D.) Spanish Harlem (E.) Black Harlem (F.) New York State

Table of Contents (3)
(G.) Chit-Chat Over Coffee Swirls

Table of Contents (4)
(H.) Jewish Knowledge (I) Self-Improvement (J) Historical Facts On England & United States

Table of Contents (5)
(K) Miscellaneous (L) Timetables (M) Ethnic Groups (N) Legal Talk
(O) Entertainment: Backward Glances (P) Immigration

Table of Contents (6)
(Q) Women__Bio Sketches, Feminine Fancies, Recipes, Kitchen Talk.
(R) Worship

Table of Contents (7)
(S) A Little Taste of History


Contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net

Friday, February 15, 2008

Monday, February 11, 2008

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (6)

People can continue to be happy" beyond the extraordinary moment," if they make up their minds to do so. How happy you are depends on your approach toward life and the people that surround you.

I leave you with these two quotes:

”Happiness is not in our circumstances, but in us. It is not something we see, like a rainbow, or feel, like the heat of a fire. Happiness is something we are."
--- John B. Sheering ---

"When you are inspired by some great purpose, some extraordinary project, all your thoughts break their bonds: Your mind transcends limitations, your consciousness expands in every direction, and you find yourself in a new, great, and wonderful world. Dormant forces, faculties and talents become alive, and you discover yourself to be a greater person by far than you ever dreamed yourself to be." --- Santiz Patanjali ---

Goodbye for now..............until the next time......when "Mimi Speaks."

I hope you have enjoyed this article. I would love to hear your comments. Author: Miriam Medina.

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Contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (5)

So now I ask you, when was the last time you had an extraordinary moment? Is it fear that is holding you back from living an extraordinary life? Fear of failure, fear of being ridiculed by others, and fear of what others may think of you, even fear of success? Would you rather continue to live with neurotic patterns rather than make changes? Are you one of those that remain in a state of lethargy and non-action? Get out of the rut you are in, and begin to explore new horizons. Failed in your business? Do not forget that you still have the creativity and ingenuity, with which you originally started out with, and can begin another business using this same creativity and ingenuity, which will result in a much more successful and prosperous accomplishment .Get rid of the Self-limitation which you have been imposing upon yourself, keeping you from achieving success and experiencing extraordinary moments in your life. When you change the belief about yourself, then the outward experiences will be changed also. Work with whatever you have and move forward, taking advantage of the opportunities that surround you and let the results speak for themselves.

Discouragement? It comes to all of us at one time or another. Sometimes failure to attain a goal may lead unexpectedly to another of a more rewardingly experience so don't remain in that state of discouragement. Give your attention to the positive; you will be amazed at how the influential people that are needed, the right opportunities and favorable situations will present themselves in order to bring your goal to a successful completion. . Unload the "woe is me" attitude, you are not at the mercy of fate. I reiterate, what you have and where you are today are the effects of all the choices and decisions you keep making in your life. Life gives back to you exactly what you believe you can accomplish and believe what you are able to accept for yourself in your own mind. No more and no less.

Most of all you need to focus on Self-Acceptance. As a start, begin to eliminate all negative beliefs about yourself which are holding you back from experiencing more extraordinary moments. Love and accept yourself completely for who you are. Acknowledge that YOU are an extraordinary person with unique talents and have an extraordinary potential to accomplish the things that you really desire. Do not allow yourself to indulge in a negative mental attitude when your circumstances are not working out the way you expected it to happen. Try to trace the real source of the anxiety and worry which will help you to have better control of the situation and take steps to deal with what is really troubling you, then move on.

To be continued: Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (6)

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (4)

Okay, so now you finally got that promotion to a great job. Wasn't that an extraordinary moment for you?

"Yes, it was at the time..."

"Oh, oh, what happened?"

"That extra money in my paycheck looked good at first, but then after taxes, it didn't add up to much." "The position just didn't meet my expectations!"

May I ask why?

"Too many responsibilities... more than I anticipated," "I've been putting in longer hours and getting paid the same," "My family complains they don't see enough of me," " There isn't a day that goes by that I'm not up-tight," "I hate the perfume my secretary wears everyday, it gives me such a sinus headache," "I can't stand my boss, he's a real pain in the b____, he is always finding fault with my work.... "

Doesn't this sound like a person who is terribly unhappy and dissatisfied with the job? If this individual is unhappy with the job, then he or she must be unhappy away from the job as well. This one is definitely hanging on for dear life to a Negative Mental Attitude.

Now for the flip-flop side, people that practice a Positive Mental Attitude. Whether these individuals are experiencing mental and emotional conflicts or frustrations regarding their employment, they are motivated to take a positive view of the situation as well as of themselves to see how they can improve and perfect it. They are determined to learn more about their position as well as the background of the company they work for, so that they can become more skilled toward making their work situation satisfactory. They will do whatever they have to do, even to the point of setting mini goals for themselves. Although, the job has ceased to provide intellectual stimulation or challenges, these individuals will look at each obstacle as a stepping-stone to something much better, turning their disadvantages to advantages...

To Be continued: Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (5)

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (3)

Some parents become deeply affected by the lack of appreciation expressed by their children which makes them most unhappy. With all good and noble intentions, these parents have worked and sacrificed to give them the comforts and pleasures which they themselves were not able to enjoy growing up. Their ultimate desire is to make the lives of their children easier by protecting them from lack, showering them with material benefits, which he or she is able to supply. Though the parents experienced happiness in making their children happy by satisfying their every want and whim, they are neglecting to provide for them a strong and stable foundation to gain strength of character by learning how to struggle and fend for themselves.

There is no substitute for the Human Connection. One must teach their child to understand and be appreciative of all that their parents do for them. Parents also need to make time to interact with their children showing them how much they love them by sharing themselves as generously as they share their money.Human warmth is the best physical communication that brings its own special kind of reassurance for both parent and child. Keep reassuring your child, teen-ager, young adult that you will always be there for them no matter what. No only say you love him or her unconditionally, but follow up with affection and most of all listen to what they have to say. You will be amazed and rewarded by the return of their love and even their appreciation.

The purchase of the house which you scrimped and saved for years is finally realized. You are now the proud owner of your first or a more expensive home. Once the experience of the extraordinary moment is over, you begin to focus on other things that you want. As you begin to satisfy each desire, then new desires keep surfacing, which becomes an endless progression. So the more you want, the less happier you are feeling.

To be continued: Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (4)

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (2)

Optimistic people have learned how to control their emotions, in dealing effectively with stress, anger and anxiety. They look for good in every situation, find opportunities in every problem, thus becoming more flexible in coping with different circumstances as well as having harmonious relationships with loved ones and co-workers. For the optimistic person, who is happy and well adjusted, memories will only yield abundant treasures. Whereas the pessimistic person only looks at the negative aspects of life, making it his or her business to be unhappy. They are constantly complaining about this and that, thus attracting more of the same into their lives. The consequences of where both of these individuals are and what they have is based on the choices and decisions which they have made "beyond the extraordinary moment.”.

People can be happy if they make up their minds to be so. The optimistic person attracts happiness, while the pessimistic person will repel it. The home is where the greater part of our life is spent with our families. This dwelling that was intended to be a place of sharing extraordinary moments of love and happiness, sadly for some, has become a battlefield of hostility and antagonistic thoughts, where its residents do not benefit from harmonious relationships. Spouses are in conflict with each other.Children are in constant conflict with their parents. In some cases, the element of force and control is apparent through verbal, mental and physical abuse, whereas in others, behavior patterns and manner of thinking that are similar, you will find encounters. Children who come from a highly stressful home environment are inundated by it, which doesn't give them a chance to deal with their own emotions. Parents, who are always in conflict, can't be a role model to their children if they themselves have not learned how to use the skills of emotional intelligence.

Many parents set themselves up for disappointment, with expectations which they want their children to respond to, failing to realize that their child's personality is different from theirs as well as having hopes and dreams of their own, thus contributing to the problems and conflicts between them...

To be continued: Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (3)

Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (1)

By Miriam Medina

What is an extraordinary moment?

An extraordinary moment can be defined as something out of the ordinary, "far exceeding the usual; exceptional; remarkable." It is an experience or some sort of achievement that may change your life forever. Once it happens, the effect is only momentary, becoming a thing of the past. The images of that moment are deeply marked in one's memory or sub-consciousness to which only a small percentage of it can be conjured up.

These extraordinary moments flow in and out of our daily experiences. They are what people want out of life, and the more of these moments that they have, the better.

The immediate reaction to an extraordinary moment is one of happiness, or better yet bliss, which is ecstatic, perfected happiness, displayed by tears, laughter, joyful shouts or just a simple grin...Happiness is a profound warm feeling.

Extraordinary moments are interpreted differently by most people. For some it could be the excitement of their wedding day, the birth of their first-born, a long awaited promotion to a great job, the exhilarated feeling of their first love, moving into their first home, starting a new business,while for others it would be getting their first driver's license,being ordained into the ministry, seeing his or her manuscript accepted by a publisher, winning in sports, getting accepted by the college of his or her choice, a long awaited investment that ultimately paid off, so on and so forth.

However, once the novelty and excitement of that fleeting exalted moment passes, and one is caught up with its daily routine and responsibility, then life is viewed differently. For some people, newer emotions of a negative nature begin to manifest themselves. Unpleasant feelings such as anxiousness, fear, discouragement, failure, inadequacy, frustration, anger, disappointment, resentment, loneliness and rejection encourage many of these individuals to look forward to some" imagined future time when things will eventually work itself out, or that they will become more financially stable in the hopes of improving their situation." Yet there are others who feel they have lived their lives richly by tuning into positive sentiments.

To be continued: Beyond The Extraordinary Moment (2)

Friday, February 8, 2008

Chit-Chat Over Coffee Swirls (7)

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Need to use the bathroom? Take a number please! Other than the kitchen, the bathroom is one of the most important and heavily traffic areas throughout the entire house, or apartment. It is a place where we relieve ourselves, read books, do puzzles, use for hygienic purposes, where women blow-dry their hair, apply cosmetics and of course where men also shave and groom themselves. Unfortunately where there is only one bathroom, you know there will be a line of short tempered family members waiting to get in......

Have you ever wondered how our ancestors managed when they had to relieve themselves or take a bath?

I must say there was nothing like the great outdoors for our early pioneers and farmers. There were plenty of trees and bushes for the sake of privacy and most of all, fresh air to breathe. Naturally as the population increased and the freezing weather would be present, "outhouses" also called "Privy houses" were built. The outhouses that were designated for the women had a crescent sign, while the men's sign was that of the sun.

The chamber pot known as the "Piss Pot" was used indoors at night for emergencies and by those who were sick. This was usually kept under the bed. I remember my papa had one. Those of wealth would refer to it as a commode. In the finer homes during the 1750s the "Privy" moved indoors and was called the water closet. The water closet was actually a closet room which contained a chair with a hole in the seat. Underneath the hole the chamber pot was placed which always had to be emptied when filled.

As for taking a bath, things were much different back then. Bathing was for the most part considered unnecessary, and immodest. Some of the men would just jump into the lake, creek or a pond whenever there was one nearby. Of course, the outdoor bath was skipped in the freezing winter. But in some homes, where they felt it would be a necessity, the family would have a big washtub in front of the fireplace or stove, where there would be kettles of water boiling to pour into the tub. In the book "I hear America Talking" there is mention of "Philadelphia's Elizabeth Drinker who took a therapeutic shower bath in 1799. It was remarkable enough to be recorded in her diary as her first bath in 28 years!" Geeez...........

The first toilet was installed in the White House in 1825 during the term of John Quincy Adams. Sometime during the 1880s, the wonderful words of "toilet paper" and "wash rag” were added to the bathroom vocabulary.

The poor immigrants, some up to maybe thirty or fifty families living in one tenement building under horrendous and unsanitary conditions during the late 1880s, had to make due of only one or two outhouses which the landlord provided and neglected to maintain.
The stench from the outhouses creeping into the building was enough to knock a horse down. Since there wasn't any water in the house to bathe themselves, the inhabitants had to get water from the pump at the corner and drag every drop that they would use up the long flight of stairs. Oh well, I guess that was that as for taking a bath.

One of the first completed bathrooms with an installed bathtub and toilet was found in George Vanderbilt's N.Y.C.'s mansion in 1855. Vassar College made sure in 1865 that their little ladies bathed twice a week.

Therefore, my dear readers by the time 1935 rolled around, most people here in America were in the habit of taking baths on a daily basis, though there were still a few who chose not to.

Bathroom anyone? why of course.................

Contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net

Thursday, February 7, 2008

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

Chit-Chat Over Coffee Swirls (5)

With all this creative writing on self-improvement as well as a story to entertain, I do not wish to overlook the importance of reflecting on the aspect of history in my blog.

Currently I have been busy transcribing verbatem an article which I feel is of great importance on the subject of Foreign Immigration and Tenement Living. Since most of us have had ancestors who came through Ellis Island and decided to stay in New York City, this information would help us to understand how they lived back then during the 1800s into the early 1900s. In my Tenement Living and Urban Social Issues section , there are many articles to read as well as images to dwell upon. Because the Foreign Immigration and Tenement Living article is lengthy, I have to divide it into parts and post them on a daily basis. So when you have time.....find yourself a comfortable chair and give a look into the past.

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Contact: miriammedina@earthlink.net