100 Acre Personality Quiz

27 May 2007


We in the United States have all heard the haunting song, "Taps". It's the songthat gives us that lump in our throats and usually tears in our eyes. But, do you know the story behind the song? If not, I think you will beinterested to find out about its humble beginnings.

Reportedly, it all began in 1862 during the Civil War, when Union Army CaptainRobert Ellicombe was with his men near Harrison's Landing in Virginia. TheConfederate Army was on the other side of the narrow strip of land.

During the night, Captain Ellicombe heard the moans of a soldier who layseverely wounded on the field. Not knowing if it was a Union or Confederatesoldier, the Captain decided to risk his life and bring the stricken man backfor medical attention.

Crawling on his stomach through the gunfire, the Captain reached the strickensoldier and began pulling him toward his encampment. When the Captain finally reached his own lines, he discovered it was actually aConfederate soldier, but the soldier was dead.

The Captain lit a lantern and suddenly caught his breath and went numb withshock. In the dim light, he saw the face of the soldier. It was his son. The boy had been studying music in the South when the war broke out. Withouttelling his father, the boy enlisted in the Confederate Army.

The following morning, heartbroken, the father asked permission of his superiorsto give his son a full military burial, despite his enemy status. His requestwas only partially granted. The Captain had asked if he could have a group ofArmy band members play a funeral dirge for his son at the funeral.

The request was turned down since the soldier was a Confederate But, out ofrespect, for the father, they did say they could give him only one musician. The Captain chose a bugler. He asked the bugler to play a series of musicalnotes he had found on a piece of paper in the pocket of the dead youth'suniform. This wish was granted.

The haunting melody, we now know as "Taps" used at military funerals was born.
The words are:

Day is done ... Gone the sun
From the lakes... From the hills...
From the sky... All is well.
Safely rest... God is nigh.

Fading light... Dims the sight .
And a star... Gems the sky
Gleaming bright From afar ...
Drawing nigh . Falls the night.

Thanks and praise... For our days .
Neath the sun... Neath the stars..
Neath the sky... As we go
This we know .. God is nigh.

How to Observe Memorial Day

The "Memorial" in Memorial Day has been ignored by too many of us who are beneficiaries of those who have given the ultimate sacrifice. Often we do not observe the day as it should be, a day where we actively remember our ancestors, our family members, our loved ones, our neighbors, and our friends who have given the ultimate sacrifice:

~ by visiting cemeteries and placing flags or flowers on the graves of our fallen heroes.

~ by visiting memorials.

~ by flying the U.S. Flag at half-staff until noon.

~ by flying the 'POW/MIA Flag' as well (Section 1082 of the 1998 Defense Authorization Act).
~ by participating in a "National Moment of Remembrance": at 3 p.m. to pause and think upon the true meaning of the day, and for Taps to be played.

~ by renewing a pledge to aid the widows, widowers, and orphans of our falled dead, and to aid the disabled veterans.

The History of Memorial Day

courtesy of U.S. Memorial Day

Memorial Day, originally called Decoration Day, is a day of remembrance for those who have died in our nation's service. There are many stories as to its actual beginnings, with over two dozen cities and towns laying claim to being the birthplace of Memorial Day. There is also evidence that organized women's groups in the South were decorating graves before the end of the Civil War: a hymn published in 1867, "Kneel Where Our Loves are Sleeping" by Nella L. Sweet carried the dedication "To The Ladies of the South who are Decorating the Graves of the Confederate Dead" (Source: Duke University's Historic American Sheet Music, 1850-1920). While Waterloo N.Y. was officially declared the birthplace of Memorial Day by President Lyndon Johnson in May 1966, it's difficult to prove conclusively the origins of the day. It is more likely that it had many separate beginnings; each of those towns and every planned or spontaneous gathering of people to honor the war dead in the 1860's tapped into the general human need to honor our dead, each contributed honorably to the growing movement that culminated in Gen Logan giving his official proclamation in 1868. It is not important who was the very first, what is important is that Memorial Day was established. Memorial Day is not about division. It is about reconciliation; it is about coming together to honor those who gave their all.

Memorial Day was officially proclaimed on 5 May 1868 by General John Logan, national commander of the Grand Army of the Republic, in his General Order No. 11, and was first observed on 30 May 1868, when flowers were placed on the graves of Union and Confederate soldiers at Arlington National Cemetery. The first state to officially recognize the holiday was New York in 1873. By 1890 it was recognized by all of the northern states. The South refused to acknowledge the day, honoring their dead on separate days until after World War I (when the holiday changed from honoring just those who died fighting in the Civil War to honoring Americans who died fighting in any war). It is now celebrated in almost every State on the last Monday in May (passed by Congress with the National Holiday Act of 1971 (P.L. 90 - 363) to ensure a three day weekend for Federal holidays), though several southern states have an additional separate day for honoring the Confederate war dead: January 19 in Texas, April 26 in Alabama, Florida, Georgia, and Mississippi; May 10 in South Carolina; and June 3 (Jefferson Davis' birthday) in Louisiana and Tennessee.

In 1915, inspired by the poem "In Flanders Fields," Moina Michael replied with her own poem:
We cherish too, the Poppy redThat grows on fields where valor led,It seems to signal to the skiesThat blood of heroes never dies.She then conceived of an idea to wear red poppies on Memorial day in honor of those who died serving the nation during war. She was the first to wear one, and sold poppies to her friends and co-workers with the money going to benefit servicemen in need. Later a Madam Guerin from France was visiting the United States and learned of this new custom started by Ms.Michael and when she returned to France, made artificial red poppies to raise money for war orphaned children and widowed women. This tradition spread to other countries. In 1921, the Franco-American Children's League sold poppies nationally to benefit war orphans of France and Belgium. The League disbanded a year later and Madam Guerin approached the VFW for help. Shortly before Memorial Day in 1922 the VFW became the first veterans' organization to nationally sell poppies. Two years later their "Buddy" Poppy program was selling artificial poppies made by disabled veterans. In 1948 the US Post Office honored Ms Michael for her role in founding the National Poppy movement by issuing a red 3 cent postage stamp with her likeness on it.

Traditional observance of Memorial day has diminished over the years. Many Americans nowadays have forgotten the meaning and traditions of Memorial Day. At many cemeteries, the graves of the fallen are increasingly ignored, neglected. Most people no longer remember the proper flag etiquette for the day. While there are towns and cities that still hold Memorial Day parades, many have not held a parade in decades. Some people think the day is for honoring any and all dead, and not just those fallen in service to our country.

There are a few notable exceptions. Since the late 50's on the Thursday before Memorial Day, the 1,200 soldiers of the 3d U.S. Infantry place small American flags at each of the more than 260,000 gravestones at Arlington National Cemetery. They then patrol 24 hours a day during the weekend to ensure that each flag remains standing. In 1951, the Boy Scouts and Cub Scouts of St. Louis began placing flags on the 150,000 graves at Jefferson Barracks National Cemetery as an annual Good Turn, a practice that continues to this day. More recently, beginning in 1998, on the Saturday before the observed day for Memorial Day, the Boys Scouts and Girl Scouts place a candle at each of approximately 15,300 grave sites of soldiers buried at Fredericksburg and Spotsylvania National Military Park on Marye's Heights (the Luminaria Program). And in 2004, Washington D.C. held its first Memorial Day parade in over 60 years.

To help re-educate and remind Americans of the true meaning of Memorial Day, the "National Moment of Remembrance" resolution was passed on Dec 2000 which asks that at 3 p.m. local time, for all Americans "To voluntarily and informally observe in their own way a Moment of remembrance and respect, pausing from whatever they are doing for a moment of silence or listening to 'Taps."

The Moment of Remembrance is a step in the right direction to returning the meaning back to the day. What is needed is a full return to the original day of observance. Set aside one day out of the year for the nation to get together to remember, reflect and honor those who have given their all in service to their country.

But what may be needed to return the solemn, and even sacred, spirit back to Memorial Day is for a return to its traditional day of observance. Many feel that when Congress made the day into a three-day weekend in with the National Holiday Act of 1971, it made it all the easier for people to be distracted from the spirit and meaning of the day. As the VFW stated in its 2002 Memorial Day address: "Changing the date merely to create three-day weekends has undermined the very meaning of the day. No doubt, this has contributed greatly to the general public's nonchalant observance of Memorial Day."

On January 19, 1999 Senator Inouye introduced bill S 189 to the Senate which proposes to restore the traditional day of observance of Memorial Day back to May 30th instead of "the last Monday in May". On April 19, 1999 Representative Gibbons introduced the bill to the House (H.R. 1474). The bills were referred the Committee on the Judiciary and the Committee on Government Reform.

To date, there has been no further developments on the bill. Please write your Representative and your Senators, urging them to support these bills. You can also contact Mr. Inouye to let him know of your support.

Visit our Help Restore the Traditional Day of Observance page for more information on this issue, and for more ways you can help.

To see what day Memorial Day falls on for the next 10 years, visit the Memorial Day Calendar page.

22 May 2007

Too Little, Too Late

So I was at the STaR Gala yesterday, the third one that day to be exact, when I get told by Derek that Rose Mary was looking for me. I found that interesting since at the end of the second Gala I shared with my friend Kathi that she had forgotten my anniversary.

I go to my Console and there she is with Patty and my balloon. They throw pixie dust at me and I kid you not, this is what she said: "Congratulations, sorry I missed it yesterday. Happy Anniversary." Now read that completely deadpan and flat... that is how she said it.

I just wanted my Steamboat Willie pin and now I have it. Rose Mary popped by later to ask me out to supper the next day (meaning today) so I accepted but let's be honest. I don't want to go... my Leader is too high maintenance for me. I'll go but it will be two hours of my life that I will never get back.

21 May 2007


My leader did NOTHING (or as my PopPop used to say "n-u-f-f-i-n, nuffin") for my anniversary!! I did not get my Steamboat Willie pin nor did I get my balloon and cards. Granted, she was off yesterday but she didn't even bother to set anything up for me... she didn't even call!

My friends around DRC remembered; Cindy Mahan, Geri and Laine. They all came by at one point or another and said congratulations. Each one wondered where my stuff was and how horrible that she didn't remember such a milestone anniversary.

It's just like my birthday ~ they forgot it for two months. Gesh, I need some pixie dust.

20 May 2007

Happy Anniversary!!

Happy Anniversary to all of the original cast members on "Figment's Dream Team"! We made it a whole year.

Now, on the news regarding the cast members I started back with a year ago. We were a class of 27 and now there are only 9 of us left: Myself, Tommy, Jackie H., Jackie D., Todd, Samantha, Blake, Steve and Melissa. This core group of people, sans Tommy and myself, came up with idea of all gathering at Hooters after work tonight. They are good people but they forgot about two of us original Dream Team members.

Tommy was omitted because he left for a few months and just came back ~ he's in training as we speak. I was omitted because, and I swear this is the answer they gave me, I am a leader. What kind of stupid answer is that? Because I am no longer a sales agent on the floor but am a leader who has saved their butts more than once they forgot that I am one of the original team... whatever.

Not going to ruin my day. I think I will wear the same outfit I did a year ago to Traditions.. my black pants, red sparkly sweater and black heels. That will be nice. I'll get my Steamboat Willie pin and 1 year balloon... they should be waiting for me with a card from Bob, Cal and Bill. Should get one from Rose Mary too... I love anniversaries at Disney!!

18 May 2007

Words of Wisdom

Never try to teach a pig to sing.
It's a waste of time,
and annoys the pig

Back One Year

So on Sunday I will be back at Disney for one year. Can you believe it? I don't really count this as my anniversary but the company does since they didn't bridge my time. My anniversary that I count is on November 12 ~ that will be three years. I don't think being gone for six months really counts as being gone, do you?

Anyway, Happy Anniversary to me on Sunday! I will get my Steamboat Willie pin and I can hardly wait. I missed it the first time by two weeks.. that was sad for me. I'll post a picture of it when I get home on Sunday night.

17 May 2007

Mozilla FireFox

So when I couldn't get into my blog I had to download a new web browser and I must say that I really like it. It has all the cool features of IE7 like the tabs, search bars and customized themes but it doesn't shut down on me. It also enabled me to get into my blog when I had to unistall IE7 and reinstall IE6. So what is the name of this miracle web browser, you may ask... Mozilla Firefox

There is one down side to using this web browser when you are working on your blog ~ you have to know your HTML in order to get things like links, pictures and movies to work. It isn't a hard language once you start working with it but in the beginning it can get a little fuzzy.

Now go and check it out. I am sure you will love it as much as I do.

16 May 2007

Locked Out

So my blog was on a sort of lock down and I could not get in to it. I had to disable one aspect of it and we'll see if that helps. If it does not, I am going to have to "relocate" this site in order to keep things safe and fun.

Nice to be back, I've missed you all.

12 May 2007

Explorer 7

So far, not so good. It has shut down on me twice already. All I want to do is create a post and add a picture. I am not impressed. I am giving it to the end of the night and if it keeps shutting down on me then I will revert back.

I'll let you know how it goes.

10 May 2007

Michael Ball - Mini Break Celebration

I am going to celebrate my first Mini-Break with a Michael Ball celebration. Please enjoy these beautiful clips of a beautiful artist. To quote someone completely inappropriate at this moment ~ One day he will be mine. Oh yes, he will be mine. Yeah, Wayne's World doesn't really fit but I swear one day I will move to London just so I can see him whenever I want... that would be a dream come true. Besides, I may be a southern belle but I was born to be a Londoner.

Enjoy poppets!

Empty Chairs, Empty Tables

Tonight (with Lesley Garrett)

First Interview on Terry Wogan (with Andrew Lloyd Webber)

Interview on Terry Wogan

The First Man You Remember

And Her Mother Came Too

Seeing is Believing (Aspects of Love)

All I Ask of You - Phantom of the Opera

This song is originally a duet in the show and Michael Ball played the part of Raoul, and he did an awesome job. On the CD that I got from London, he sings the entire song by himself and it is just beautiful. I wanted to share the lyrics because they just strike a cord with me today.

09 May 2007

Mickey's Magical Milestones Tour

Here is my only photo taken on the team outing that I set up. We went on the Mickey's Magical Milestones Tour and I really enjoyed it. If I ever to go to work in the parks, I want to spend at least half of my time doing tours like that because it was so much fun.

Starting from the left: Devika, Rose Mary, Doug, Patty, Wanda, Chris, Jill, Derek and me. The woman in the center with the costume on is Nicole and she was our tour guide. Nicole was very funny and handled everything this motley crew threw at her so I tip my ears to her.

08 May 2007

Air Quality

Thanks to the fires in Georgia the air quality around here is horrible. I just went out to get some gas in the car and I had an asthma attack almost immediately. You can see the haze from the fires and smell the smoke. I swear I can not stand this particular aspect of living in Florida and it happens every year. For those of you with allergies and asthma, here is a breakdown that I found regarding the Air Quality Index. I, for one, never understood what all the colors and numbers meant so now that I found it I thought I would share, compliments of AirNow.Gov.

Air Quality Index
Levels of Health Concern Numerical
Value Meaning

Good 0-50 Air quality is considered satisfactory, and air pollution poses little or no risk.

Moderate 51-100 Air quality is acceptable; however, for some pollutants there may be a moderate health concern for a very small number of people who are unusually sensitive to air pollution.

Unhealthy for Sensitive Groups 101-150 Members of sensitive groups may experience health effects. The general public is not likely to be affected.

Unhealthy 151-200 Everyone may begin to experience health effects; members of sensitive groups may experience more serious health effects.

Very Unhealthy 201-300 Health alert: everyone may experience more serious health effects.

Hazardous > 300 Health warnings of emergency conditions. The entire population is more likely to be affected.

Straight from London, U.K.

One of my cast members just got back from London and Paris for her vacation. I admit that I was jealous because she took the trip that Dani and I were planning on doing this past March. My team knew about the disappointment of us not going to get to see Michael Ball in concert and even though they have no clue who he is, they felt bad for us.

Long story short, Erin brought me back a Michael Ball CD!! Now, I know most of you are thinking "big deal, it's a CD"... well it is a big deal because out of the 6 years that I have been hunting for his music I have only been able to find 2 CDs stateside. It's not common to be a London stage groupie here!! Anyway, she was sweet enough to scower London for the perfect gift and it turned out to be Love Changes Everything: the Essential Michael Ball. Go listen and enjoy.

06 May 2007

Answer Some Questions

Yeah, the cyberstalking. I am sure you are all wondering what in the world I am talking about so I will illuminate.

About a year ago, Diane contacted me using some made up name and asked about Dani. I was hesitant and inquired more about who this person was before I said anything about my baby. She finally fessed up and then began demanding information. Uh, hello? She was 13 1/2 at the time and I could tell you that they hadn't seen her in 13 years!

Needless to say I wrote an email that very elloquantly stated that she had no right to demand anything from me and to please leave my family alone. I took down the one site I had and in July last year I built this one. We all know what my mother did so let's not go there.

Now, I also have a MySpace account that I use to keep up with my friend's kids that are like family to me. I've written about them before ~ Brandon and Katie over in Iraq and then Boo (her name is Katie too so she got a nickname to tell her apart from Brandon's wife) ~ Jacque's kids. Anywho, I don't have anything about my kids on my MySpace as it's only purpose is to keep up with my nieces and nephews. So the other day, the exact same day I made this an invited blog only, I received this letter from "Annishia" in my MySpace Inbox:

I recently found out that you have shared personal emails that I have sent to you (and your mother) with one of your bloggers. Amazing to me that you have taken advantage of our attempts to communicate with a very special person whom we love. Shame on you and your mother for playing such a hateful game for your enjoyment on the internet. By the way, your blogger led me to this internet site.

Now, initially I responded on a nicer note:

I have no clue who you are or what you are talking about so unless you would like to introduce yourself and speak in a civilized tone I suggest you rethink the previous email. Have a wonderful day.

Then I thought about it for a minute and replied with this:

Oh and if this is Diane again ~ bugger off!! You'd think you would at least be brave enough to use your real name in any of these conversations.

I have the right to speak to whomever I chose about whatever topic I see fit. I suggest you use these weak attempts at manipulation on someone else... perhaps your deadbeat son.

You can not love someone you do not know so forget it. She now knows the truth and finds your entire family to be horrible and wants nothing to do with any of you. To prove the point, she threw away the one picture she had of Shawn... but not before tearing it up and calling him some unsavory names with my approval on that one occassion. That chapter of her life is now over.

I do not know what cheap entertainment factor you may be speaking of but I do know that if you have found my blog on the internet you can consider it removed immediately ~ or at least changed so that only members may read it as you have no right to anything regarding my family.

Now, please return to the rock from which you have emurged and I will go about my life as I wish you would go about yours and stop stalking my family or I will press charges against the lot of you.


P.S. - we are moving out of country in the very near future and wish no further contact. Should our wishes not be obeyed you will be hearing from my lawyer.

Yes, I know what you are thinking ~ What if it isn't Diane? My response is that I don't flipping care because the initial note written to me was just about as passive aggressive as you can get so I figured that they needed to be "spoken" to in a manner that they might understand. I then emailed MySpace and reported this individual as a cyberstalker and cyberbullying me. We shall see what happens from there.

That is the long and short of it as to why this is no longer out for all the world to see but just my close friends and family. Enjoy and if I have left a loop hole in the thought process somewhere, let me know and I will tie it up.

04 May 2007

Why the Email?

I am sure you are wondering why you received an email to read my blog. It seems as though there are people out there who "cyberstalk" my chidren. I do not want them in their lives and therefore they have no business slinking around the internet reading about them and seeing the updated photos. In order to keep thing the way they should be, I have blocked this blog from being read by anyone other than those I invited... simple.

Now you know you are loved and adored if I have invited you to read all of my babblings.

03 May 2007

We're Half Way There!

As you all know, Disney is celebrating A Year of a Million Dreams and we are already halfway there! Cast members receive a publication called Eyes & Ears and it is full of wonderful stories, tips and such. I thought it would be nice to look back at our first dream and where we are now... enjoy this cast exclusive look at the magic. To expand the articles, all you have to do is click on them to open in a new window.

Mickey's Magical Milestones Tour

Chronicle the fascinating world, development and success of Mickey Mouse while touring the Magic Kingdom® Park. Recall and discover the magic of Mickey by visiting special locations that retrace his rise to fame. Relive some memorable moments from his distinguished career and learn why he wields such an emotional impact even today.

That is what I chose to do for our Team Outing this month. I chose, coordinated and set up the entire affair which will happen on Monday!! It isn't going to cost us a thing (another fabulous Disney perk) and will be so completley fabulous that I can hardly wait.
I am such a Disney geek!!

Spring Fling

So yesterday we had a Spring Fling at work. We all gathered for food and fellowship before an afternoon full of meetings. It was fun. We were to all dress in our Spring best and bring something to eat. I took my mom's Maccaroni Ranchero and everyone loved it. A lot of people had strange ideas as to what their Spring best was but here is what I wore... and of course stayed completely Disney. I swear, if I ever leave Disney people will wonder about my wardrobe!

01 May 2007

How I Survived Jury Duty

Confessions of Super Mom was so funny that I did not mind sitting in the "holding area" for jury duty most of the day Monday. I was actually a little ticked when they called my name to go and watch other potential jurors get picked and I was excused. I used my "Super Eavesdropping" skills to find out why since I harbored a bit of guilt at the prospect of lying. Apparently I am too "All American Girl Next Door" and I work for Disney. The defense decided that I would not be good for his case... go figure. I thought the guy was guilty by looking at him ~ you know the type ~ and he was being accused of drunk driving... yeah, no brainer.

Anyway, here's the teaser:

For every harried mother who dreams of cleaning with the power of 10,000 Swiffers, putting her children into Super Time Outs with just a flick of her Merciless Gaze, and employing a little Super Eavesdropping when the occasion warrants, CONFESSIONS OF SUPER MOM is a must-read.

Filled with romance, intrigue, humor and a colorful cast of characters, this delightful new novel introduces a superhero for the Swiffer generation.So forget those chores --- pick up CONFESSIONS OF SUPER MOM and relish in a much-deserved escape. This charming novel will keep readers glued to the page as they cheer for Super Mom to root out injustice and surrender herself to love. Readers everywhere will find themselves in its pages and rejoice in finding a book that celebrates their overlooked everyday acts of heroism.