Saturday Morning Rewind

free-imagesBoots here with some fabulous Saturday morning music for you to enjoy with your coffee.  This music is nothing short of fantastic.  Brilliant.  Energetic.  Super fun!   Sam & Dave, Otis Redding, and Marvin Gaye.  This is the sort of line-up that puts a smile on your face and gets your toes tapping.

And this lively music combined with my morning Joe?  Well, nothing’s going to stop me today from putting my best left foot forward and dancing like I mean it.   After all, is there anything more fun than some lively dancing?  Be it on a crowded dance floor or in your laundry room . . . while walking down the driveway or mucking out the stalls.  Dancing is one of those primary elements that makes the world go round.  It’s true.  It really is.

So this weekend, get out there and shake your thang.  Have a good time.  Appreciate the beat of the tunes and  the beat of your heart.

Sam & Dave – Soul Man (1967)

Otis Redding “Try A Little Tenderness” Live 1967

Otis Redding, “I’ve Been Loving You Too Long”, from MIPF 1967

Marvin Gaye- Got to Give It Up (Long version). TV Performance 1977

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Ollio Women’s Shoe Platform Open Toe High Heel Ribbon Accent Multi Color Pump

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The Geography of the Coffee Bean: The 3 Main Coffee-Growing Regions

the geography of coffee

Cabin Door Coffee

Coffee. It’s not just a simple plant in any old garden . . . coffee = landscape + climate + elevation.

Attention all Map-of-the-World Lovers!  Boots here, as promised, to talk more about the Geography of Coffee.   And to keep it interesting, I am going to keep it brief.  As our friend Bill Shakespeare said, “Brevity is the soul of wit.”  Now I don’t know that my end goal today is Coffee Wit, but I am going to do my best to stir your interest in the geography of coffee.

Coffee is Geography . . . Geography is Coffee  

The 3 main coffee regions of the world:

  1. Latin America: well-balanced; crisp and bright acidity; more consistent quality
  2. Africa/Arabia: exotic; berry, citrusy/grapefruity, and spicy flavors; more unpredictable
  3. Asia/Pacific: full-bodied; spicy, herbally; depth; pairs well with savory
  4. These regions each have unique and distinct, geographically-inspired taste profiles.

All of this base-camp info will ultimately lead to me walking you through a coffee tasting at the end of all this fascinating Geography stuff.   Next?  We will look at how to “taste” coffee and identify the characteristics that help you to identify region.  But in the meantime, I am feeling some camp stories percolating to the surface.  I might have to explore some of those before looking at coffee tasting.

And if you are interested in this kind of stuff — I am! –then you will be surprised that you can not only taste but actually smell the geography of the bean before you even slurp.

So have some fun today just enjoying the flavor of your coffee.  Appreciate how very far those little beans in their burlap sacks had to travel to give you so much pleasure.

Who doesn’t want a map of the world on the wall? And it’s so inexpensive! I have two maps posted in my cabin: one in the kitchen and one in the little house with the crescent moon cut out of the door.

Rand McNally Signature Map of the World

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This paperback looks so awesome!  Who doesn’t want to know the secrets to happiness?  I am thinking: I must order this.

Happy: Secrets to Happiness from the Cultures of the World

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Have you heard this music?  It is simply the best in collaboration, talent, creativity, and musicality . . . all from around the world.  

 Songs Around The World (CD + DVD)

http://amzn.to/2cyp4u3

Seeking Higher Ground & Following Random and True Directions

IMG_3112. keep your heart pointing trueBoots here on this beautiful summer day . . . pointing my compass and seeking Higher Ground today . . . and keeping my heart pointed true.

It seems as if some days my compass gets swiveled around and I find myself turning around in circles.  I think we all experience this from time to time.  Not knowing which way our compass is pointing or from which direction the winds are blowing or how high the river is going to rise.   There are so many uncertainties in life.

It is when I am out in the wilderness and trying to figure out which way to go on a “gently-used” (read invisible) trail when I most have to rely on my compass.  And on my internal compass — my intuition — as well.  There is something about aligning my intuition with the jittering of the compass needle that makes me feel ultra-alive.  Add to this a tiny and disconcerting sliver of the great unknown that lies ahead . . . you have a pretty good recipe for being in the moment.

Well, I am here now clacking away on the keyboard, so that must mean that I chose the right and true directions out there in the woods.   Still, this is not to say that I haven’t arrived home or back in camp without some mean bruises, scrapes, blackberry scratches, and nettle stings to remind me that lucky as I am to feel “found” again, it wasn’t without some discomfort along the trail.

Like life, we don’t really ever know if we have chosen the perfect directions . . . those directions that lead us to a sense of home, unscathed and happy.  There are always going to be forks in the trail, creeks to be forded, blazes that are tricky to find.

I once asked an old-timer, this tough Bull of the Woods, why blazes were cut so high up on the trees?  He answered me with one word, “Snow.”  Blazes, the recognizable scars you see high up on trees, are marked to establish a true line.  This line is run by what is called a “random and true” line method, ensuring that the trail can be followed through the woods.  Blazes are cut high up on the tree to allow for them to read during the wintertime’s heavy snowfall.

If you have ever been on skis or snowshoes in the forest in the dead of winter, you know how amazingly well a trail can hide in the wintertime.  So, a resounding Yay! for those who have gone before us with the foresight of cutting those blazes high for us — no matter how high the snow gets, we are still able to follow that random and true line.  [And I sometimes wonder if this foresight was learned partially by some tough-love from Mother Nature.]

So, if you are going to be relying on blazes, you have to take your eyes off the ground and look up for that random and true line that will lead you back home.

All of this to say, the change-ability of life is inevitable.  But the compass, if I trust it, will point in the direction that will determine my new destiny. When I think on it, true directions aren’t always going to be the Easy Path in life.  Sometimes it means doing what I have to do, reminding myself on a daily basis that this current paradigm is temporary.  That sometimes life kind of sucks and I feel kind of lost . . . and it’s up to me to get out my compass, line up with true north, and head off on a new adventure that will lead me out of my current temporary into a whole new feeling of temporary.

I listen to this music and see all of the collaborative effort that went into its recording.  It takes a lot of energy to make stuff like this happen.  I respect it. And I also respect the effort that people put into reaching a higher level of consciousness.

Here is some great music for you to check out!  Click on the images/links below.  Have a fantastic day, listen to good music, follow the blazes, and head in your true directions.

Keep your heart pointed true.

Songs Around The World (CD + DVD)

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PFC 2: Songs Around The World [CD/DVD Combo]

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PFC3: Songs Around The World [CD/DVD Combo]

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Playing For Change: Peace Through Music: DVD

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16 Tons of Saturday

Happy happy Saturday.  For some of you, Saturday morning conjures images of sleeping in, reading the paper while sipping your coffee, generating your to-do list for the weekend, starting a pot of soup or setting bread to rise, hitting the trail for a loop around the lake, deadheading the rhododendrons, or maybe thinking about throwing in a load or two of laundry . . . all of these quiet, pleasant activities that set a week of hard work behind you.  It’s a day of restoration, a day of catching your breath.  Yay for Saturday.

o brother chain gang

thistooismeaningless.com

Others of you see Saturday as another work day that might even be a bit busier or a touch more demanding than the other days of the week.  You might be waiting tables on a Saturday night or checking groceries in a tourist town food market or catching up on that work project when the office is finally quiet or lesson planning classes and grading papers for the following week or making up hours to fill your paycheck to your weekly max or working customer service at a large store where everyone takes care of their returns on Saturday.  It is a day of watching your friends be friends: going to Farmers’ Market, lunching at the brew pub, engaging in Book Group, shopping for groceries or shoes . . . this sort of thing.  It all looks to be pretty idyllic when you are the one working away while your friends are off playing and engaging in leisure activities.  (Enter theme music): My Life on the Chain Gang.

Well, if you are part of this Saturday group, like so many of us are, this post is for you.  And if you sometimes feel like you’ve sold your soul to the company store, you are going to love this version of “16 Tons” sung by Tennessee Ernie Ford.  Enjoy the music below.  I know that Saturday can feel harried, but try to take some time to enjoy some music.  It is truly balm for the soul.

And while you are enjoying this music, snap your fingers, tap your toes, and dance.  Yes, dance.  When was the last time you just stood up and started dancing at home?  Truly.  When was the last time?  And who cares if someone is watching.  In fact, if someone is . . . even better.  He or she might join in with you.  Be a trend setter.  Dance!

If you dance to these tunes below, please, please, please, share a comment as to how it made you feel.  We’ll all enjoy reading about your dancing!

Happy working, happy Saturday, happy dancing, happy life.

Live is a lively event.  Dance like someone is watching you, drink coffee, and get to it.  What’s stopping you?

xox Boots

 

 

And when was the last time you watched O Brother, Where Art Thou?  Or listened to the soundtrack?  Fun!  Maybe tonight would be the perfect night for it.

O Brother, Where Art Thou?

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O Brother, Where Art Thou? by Various Artists (2000) Audio CD

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A Love & Happiness Saturday morning to you!

saturday. love and happinessLove and happiness . . . this picture makes me feel good inside.  It makes me think of a rundown little honky tonk in a tiny town . . . one of those towns with crooked streets and more taverns than there were bakeries, grocery stores, and churches combined.  It was the place where my sister, Ranger, and I used to go dancing every Friday night.  Friday night dancing . . . we wouldn’t have missed it for all the Joe in Latin America, Africa, and the Asia Pacific combined — the music was just that good.

At the end of every night, the band would be casing up their instruments and the music man, Dan the Band Man, used to plug “Love and Happiness” into the speakers to quell our demand for “More!  More!”  His intent, I am guessing, was meant to settle us foot stompers down from a rousing rendition of “Congo Square” or “Love Shack.”

Well, after a night of dancing in this establishment, I can tell you that a Saturday-morning-after-Friday-night-dancing cup of Joe was just what I needed.  This place was a hoot and a half, and I am feeling a story coming on.  Yep.  I can just feel it.

For your Saturday fun and enjoyment, here is some music for you to enjoy.  I am dedicating these two tunes to Dan the Band Man and to Orville Johnson, who can play the best cover of “Congo Square” I have ever danced to — wishing them happy music and good coffee.

Love this version of Al Green’s Love and Happiness!

. . . and I have to add Sonny Landreth into this mix . . . so awesome!  All you have to do is listen to the first riffs of this song, and you know you are going to love it!

 

Life is a lively event.  Listen to music, drink coffee, and get to it.

xox Love,

Boots the Badass Coffee Babe

Journey to Your “When I’m Gone” Place

IMG_3119Love this!  Take a moment today to dream about where your “When I’m Gone” place is . . . and then go there, if only in your mind.  It might be Paris or it could be that high mountain lake where you go camping every year.  Take some time today.  It only takes a moment.  Shut the door, put your feet up on the desk, close your eyes, and just imagine.  Breathe.  Dream. Open your eyes.  Life is good, isn’t it?

“He who travels has stories to tell.” – Irish saying

Tell your story.

maps III