Once again it is Memorial Day, and for many it is a long weekend for camping, parties, lots of sales, and even Memorial Day cruises. There are many reasons why this day is notable. But let’s not forget the real reason – the important reason. It was set aside to remember and honor all those who have paid the ultimate sacrifice in the military service of America . . . Those who died fighting to preserve our lives and our freedom. They won’t be here to celebrate with us because they gave up everything for us. So amidst our celebrations, let’s pause and take time to remember the thousands of men and women whose lives were cut short so that we could live, and be with those we love to enjoy our freedoms.
God help us to remember the cost of our blessings and to remain worthy of that cost.
The new PREQUEL BOOK to the DRAGOMEIR SERIES is coming out this month and HERE IS THE COVER! The new book –
Daughter of the Dark Lord, Part One, The Burning Sky
– will inform you about the early years of “The Ariella”, Queen of the Dragons at Mt. Drago. It gives a better understanding of her earliest moments and how the environment into which she was born and the people surrounding her, shaped the character of a child and led to the unique leader she became. And of course, her best friend and dragon companion, Exxa, played an important role in shaping her life. So, if you loved the dragons in the Dragomeir Series, along with all the other amazing creatures, Daughter of the Dark Lord will give you an engaging look into the past of the Queen of the Dragons that will keep you wondering what happens next!
Check out the Dragomeir Series and my other books at www.solitaireparke.com.
If you’re struggling with feeling tired, uninspired, or have writer’s block, maybe you should take a good look at your diet. We tend to blame everything for not being at our peak performance, but what if it’s partially as a result of what we eat? Creative minds place very tall demands on our brains, and to do our best work we should think about what affects our productivity. We probably won’t produce our best work if our bodies feel tired and sluggish. So check out the list below:
FOODS FOR CREATIVITY
- FISH – High in Omega3 fats which are essential for healthy brain function
- EGGS – Contains choline which enhances memory and reaction times
- WHOLE WHEAT BREAD, PASTA, AND BROWN RICE – They are digested more
slowly than their white equivalents, so you don’t experience creativity-killing energy
highs and lows
- BANANAS – Contains potassium needed for oxygen flow to the brain, keeps energy levels up with just the right amount of glucose
- BLUEBERRIES – Contain antioxidants which improve memory
- UNSALTED NUTS AND SEEDS – Great source of proteins and fats which provide long-lasting energy
- BROCCOLI – Your brain’s best friend. Contains Vitamin K which enhances cognitive functions – works best when eaten raw or roasted with olive oil and garlic
- SWEET POTATO CRISPS – Baked crisps, thinly sliced, with a little salt. Contains more potassium than bananas – needed for oxygen flow to the brain
If you know there are certain foods that will tempt you, just don’t keep them around.
Make sure you don’t over-indulge. Even healthy foods and snacks can quickly lead to a
sugar crash. (Avoid foods and snacks containing high fructose corn syrup).
It’s always a good idea to eat a healthy breakfast to start your day.
Have a snack a couple times during the day – maybe an apple or some unsalted nuts.
These are some ideas that should help to keep the creativity flowing and keep your brain functioning all day. So, what works for you? If you have a special diet that helps you to write, think, and learn better, let us know.
Don’t step on the sidewalk cracks, walk under any mirrors, and stay away from black cats are a few of the taboos on Friday the 13th. We’ve all heard them before. Most people do not take it too seriously, but there are some who dread the date. By the way, if you’re interested, the word paraskevidekatriaphobia means fear of Friday the 13th! If you were looking for a definitive answer, there really isn’t one. Like many cultural traditions and long-running superstitious beliefs, the exact source is unknown. It is most likely the result of many different factors, strengthened over time by a combination of specific incidents, folklore and religion that have evolved over hundreds of years to create what we now refer to as the unluckiest date in the calendar. Here are a few of the beliefs about Friday the 13th:
- Some superstitions about Friday the 13th are rooted in the guest list of the Last Supper. Judas was the 13th guest at the table, and Jesus was crucified on a Friday. Coincidence?
- On Friday the 13th in 1307, thousands of Knights Templar were arrested on orders from King Philip IV of France because of suspicions that their secret initiation rituals made them “enemies of the faith.” After years of torture, they were burned at the stake. Dan Brown’s novel The DaVinci Code popularized the link between the Knights Templar and Friday the 13th.
- The first specific written reference to Friday the 13th as an unlucky day was in an early-20th century novel by Thomas W. Lawson, called Friday, the 13th. Ironically, a ship named after Lawson was caught in a storm and shipwrecked on the night of Friday the 13th, 1907.
- Superstition can result in an economic dip. Donald Dossey, founder of the Stress Management Center and Phobia Institute, says U.S. businesses lose millions of dollars on Friday the 13th, because some people are reluctant to leave their homes.
- Friday’s position as the unlucky day may have been strengthened by it being the day of execution of criminals for many years, commonly called Hangman’s Day.
- Scandinavians believed 13 signified bad luck because their 13th mythological demigod Loki was an evil one who brought great misfortune upon humans.
- Hindus believed that it was unlucky for 13 people to gather in one place.
- Most skyscrapers and hotels lack a 13th floor, which specifically comes from the tendency in the early 1900s for buildings in New York City to omit the unlucky number (though both the Empire State Building and the Waldorf-Astoria Hotel have 13th floors). Street addresses sometimes skip from 12 to 14, while airports may skip the 13th gate.
- Allegedly, the popular Friday the 13th films were so-named just to cash in on this menacing date recognition, not because the filmmakers actually believed the date to be unlucky.
- Black cats have been seen in Western cultures as an omen of bad luck — they have been associated with witches, and many cultures believe that a black cat crossing your path means you will suffer disaster or even death. Gamblers are especially fearful of the black cat curse – many of them believe that if they see a black cat while going to a casino, they should abandon their plans to gamble there.
Do you consider Friday the 13th to be an unlucky date? Has anything bad ever happened to you on this day before? Do you have any superstitions to help you avoid bad luck? Add your comments below.