Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Trouble and Strife…

In the UK you can claim to be a real cockney if you were born within the sound of Bow Bells.

St Mary-le-Bow is the church of the ubiquitous ‘Cockney‘. imageIndeed to be an authentic cockney you must be born within the sound of ‘Bow Bells.’ The term ‘cockney, was originally applied to a small or misshapen egg, which was sometimes referred to as a cock's egg. The Oxford English Dictionary claims that the first use of the word as a reference to native Londoners was in 1521, when it was used by writer Whitinton. In 1617 John Minsheu wrote in his Ductor in Linguas that the word originated thus. 'A cockney or cockny, applied only to one born within the sound of Bow bell, that is in the City of London, a tearme coming first out of this tale. That a citizen's sonne riding with his father in the country, asked when he heard a horse neigh what the horse did; his father answered "neigh." Riding further he heard a cock crow, and said: "Does the cock neigh too?"' Whatever the origin of the term it was intended as a term of flattery for it was applied contemptuously by rural people to native Londoners who lived by their wits as opposed to by their muscle.”

Following on from that interesting fact Cockney folk used to have a language all of their own which was spoken in rhyme.  For instance, trouble and strife meant wife.  Apples and pears stood for stairs.

Rhyming slang phrases are derived from taking an expression which rhymes with a word and then using that expression instead of the word. For example the word "look" rhymes with "butcher's hook". In many cases the rhyming word is omitted - so you won't find too many Londoners having a "butcher's hook" at this site, but you might find a few having a "butcher's".

Cockney rhyming slang originated in the East End of London. Some slang expressions have escaped from London and are in popular use throughout the rest of Britain. For example "use your loaf" is an everyday phrase for the us in UK, but not too many people realise it is Cockney Rhyming Slang ("loaf of bread: head").

Further examples for your amusement and interest (the phrase is written first, with the word that is actually said aloud is on brackets and the translation comes last!)

Dickie dirt (dickie)= shirt
Almond rocks (almonds)= Socks
Whistle and flute( whistle)= suit
Jam Jar (Jam)= car
Mickey Mouse (Mickey)= house, can also be Cat and mouse
Dog and bone (Dog)=phone
Trouble and strife (trouble)= wife
China plate (china) = Mate/friend
Moby Dick (moby)= sick
Porky pie (porky/porkies)= lie
Ruby Murray (Ruby) Curry
Adam and Eve (Adam and Eve)= Believe
Cream crackered (crackered)= knackered/tired

That's just a few, so the next time someone uses any of these you might (just) be able to figure out what they're talking about!

Meanwhile, the main reason for this post was not to dwell on Cockney slang but try to move away from all the ‘trouble and strife’ in the world today!  Most recently the terrible fate of those poor young people in Norway who were killed by a deranged madman.  A sad reflection on today’s world when such acts can be perpetrated so easily.  Imagine, someone dresses up as a policeman, a member of the public we have all been taught to respect; a keeper of the peace, law and order!  Only to find this man dressed up as one and then going on a shooting rampage.

For this reason I thought I would post some ‘happy’ pictures of items made by the BBEST team.  Just for a few minutes take you mind of today’s sad world and browse some wonderful talent!

Garden Sunshine by Pocketcomfort

Highly collectible miniature altered art quilt *ACEO measures just 2.5" by 3.5”

Good Day Sunshine by MagdaleneKnits

“I need to laugh and when the sun is out
I've got something I can laugh about
I feel good in a special way
I'm in love and it's a sunny day
Good Day Sunshine”

Sunshine and Shadow flower by Zudagay

This summery flower focal features sculpted petals on a sturdy base and a button center

Fused Glass Night light by Chris1

A fun night light that will make you smile

Garden of Joy by JNoriginals

Just in time to brighten your day is this blossom brooch that will dress up your jacket or sweater, a hat and even a purse!

Hibiscus Flower by Sixsisters

It is a happy looking flower!

So, hopefully, by now you will have had your mind taken off any unpleasantness and had a bubble bath (bubble)= laugh!

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Some like it hot...

...but probably not as hot as it has been in the United States this past week. Heat wave records from Maine to Texas were broken in mid-July when temperatures of 100 degrees Fahrenheit and higher, coupled with very high humidity, affected millions of people and strained power grids everywhere. According to the Washington Post, the "proximate cause of this heat wave was a huge ridge of high pressure at the upper levels of the atmosphere, which led to sinking air that inhibits rainfall and boosts air temperatures. The clockwise circulation around the High helped pump humid air northward from the Gulf of Mexico. The abnormally strong high pressure cell peaked in the central states on July 17 and 18, and then stretched eastward, moving the bubble of heat with it as the week wore on." (

Are these extreme weather patterns signs of global warming? The answer depends on who you ask. Certainly many scientists interpret the data to support this cause, predicting that a permanent rise in summer temperatures will occur in the near future. ( No matter what the reason for the heat is, we can only think of how to stay cool when the temperatures climb. Here are some ideas for beating the heat and humidity this summer.

Drink plenty of water. If needed, or if you need to be active in the heat, add electrolytes to prevent dehydration. Limit or eliminate alcoholic beverages, which are diuretics; they add to dehydration. So fill your wine glass with water, plenty of ice, and a splash of lemon or freshly squeezed lime rather than chardonnay.

Cool water is your friend. Keep a mister bottle of water in the refrigerator and use it to spritz a little cool water on your skin periodically. Keep a plastic bottle filled with water in the freezer and apply it to your ankles and behind your knees, cooling the entire body. Refrigerated, damp cloths can be used to cool pulse points on the wrists. Take frequent cool (not cold) showers.

Wear loose, lightweight clothing, preferably in cotton or linen - fabrics that allow moisture to evaporate from the skin. If you will be outdoors, wear a hat to protect your head and face from the sun's rays; this will also make you feel cooler in general.

Keep the heat out and the cool in. Close all curtains, shades and blinds on south-facing windows during the day, and open them at night. Shut off unnecessary electrical devices, such as computers and televisions; these items not only draw on overtaxed power systems, but they also emit heat to indoor air. Take advantage of cross-ventilation by opening windows strategically based on natural air flow, allowing any available breeze to cool a room naturally.

Get away from it all. If you don't have air conditioning, spend time in a public place that does. Now might be a great time to visit your local library to pick up a summer novel. Or take in a movie. If you can, take a trip to the beach where you can go for a swim and enjoy ocean breezes. Don't forget the sunscreen!

Stay cool, calm, and collected. Don't let the heat overwhelm your frame of mind. This is a good time to lay low, to slow down your busy schedule, and to spend time on rest and relaxation. Stroll gently on the beach and collect shells. Take a boat ride and catch the ocean spray. Or simply sit in the shade of your favorite tree while reading that book you meant to finish months ago.

Try to enjoy the summer despite the heat. Create some fond memories to last through the winter months. Before you know it, those lazy summer days will give way to busy fall schedules, holiday plans, and the short days of December. Stay cool - in both body and mind! Have a relaxing summer.

Monday, July 4, 2011

From Then Until Now by Pam Todd

Two hundred thirty-five years ago today, the Declaration of Independence was signed by our forefathers.  The story began in the early 1600s when settlers came from Europe, primarily England, to the shores of North America.  These brave travelers (for it took a long time to cross the Atlantic Ocean, and the conditions on the ships were more dreadful than any of us can imagine) created a settlement in 1620 at Jamestown, Virginia.  Many people died that first winter.  Had it not been for the Native Americans who lived in that area and taught the Pilgrims how to plant corn and squash, even more would not have survived. 

During the next 156 years, more and more people arrived, and colonies were established.  Everyone was under the rule of the King of England.  Eventually, the people grew tired of living under the King’s rules and of paying tax money to England, and they rebelled.  They declared their independence with the signing of the Declaration of Independence on July 4, 1776.  However, they weren’t yet really free.  England sent soldiers to America to control the colonists.  The colonists fought back, and the Revolutionary War occurred, ending with victory by the colonists in 1783.   Only then were the 13 colonies free and independent.

As time passed, the land between the Mexican Territory and the Canadian Territory was divided  and the United States grew to 48 states.  With the addition of Alaska and Hawaii, we are now 50 states. 

The United States is a strong friend and ally to England, our original mother country. And for those of us Boomers on Etsy, there are many friendships between artists there and here, for which we are especially thankful.

Since that first July 4, citizens have celebrated our independence…….with picnics, parades, and fireworks.  The red, white, and blue colors of our flag are seen everywhere.  May we all pause and be thankful for the freedoms we enjoy as we celebrate the Fourth of July this year and every year.

In honor of the Fourth of July, here are some special selections from the shops of our Boomers and Beyond Etsy team.