I am writing this blog in honor of my Mother, Alta, who owned her small beauty salon. She began working as a stylist after she left home at the age of 16. When she had her salon in North Carolina, she had some wealthy patrons among the tobacco heirs. Mostly, her clients were the average person. Those were the “good old days.”
She would be horrified to know what small business owners are going through today. We lost my Mother at the age of 93, long after she retired. Her last few months were in an assisted living and nursing home.
On a previous blog, I wrote that I thank God that she didn’t have to be without family to cheer and visit her as many have these last few months. Just today, I have learned that our Governor in Florida is once again making visits for families possible with proper precautions. We mourn for those who died all alone during this time.
What does all this have to do with the COST of beauty? I will quote what a small business owner in California, like my Mother, had to say about a very wealthy member of our Congress and the Speaker of the House.
It appears that the business owner has released to the public a scene from her security camera, showing the Speaker with a wet head and no mask over her nose or mouth, moving through the inside of the salon, after having her associate called in that she was coming in for a “wash and blow.” Like most salon owners, the owner rents out the chairs to stylists, and can’t control who their customers may be.
Oh, yes, the owner, Erica Kious, is being rebuked that she didn’t get permission to release the security clip, but she felt obligated to do so because of the fight that small business owners, like herself, have had to go through during this pandemic. She also is being shown in the press as a person who “set up” the Speaker…even though the Speaker is the one who asked to come in for the style. Kious’ response to the battle, “I’ve had a camera system in there for five years….I didn’t go in there and turn cameras on as soon as she walked in and set her up. So that is absolutely false.”
Her response also for why she released the video of the Speaker was this:
“This is for everybody,” she said. “I am sharing this because of what everyone in my industry, and my city, what every small business is going through right now.”
These battles will continue and the Press loves it, but there is much suffering going on in the small-business arena. This blog is not to write in depth here about the many small business owners who have had their businesses burned to the ground by so-called “protesters.” That could be another post.
The fact remains that those who are doing this without regard to the hard work put into developing a business is despicable. Their real names are not “protesters”, but “anarchists” and “criminals.” There is certainly NO BEAUTY in what they are doing. I wonder why the young people/or older, who go out night after night to destroy, have not learned anything about RIGHT and WRONG. No cause…or position in thought…can justify this in any way. People have died. Having hair done, or some have laughingly called “hairgate,” is small potatoes. The real point is destruction and the shut-downs.
As my readers know, history is a big teacher. The Nazi regime brought about a similar situation before WWII when they went out to destroy the hard-earned businesses of the Jews. We know how this ended…with millions incarcerated…and murdered. Whenever a mob picks a leader and gets into power, someone will be the scapegoat. There will always be a reason to blame someone for the crisis. Beware…beware…America!
( I continue with the article, in part, by Brook Singman, with an interview of Erica Kious, the small business owner of the salon in California. )
“There were rules and regulations to go by to safely reopen, which I did, but I was still not allowed to open my business,” she said, noting that she installed plexiglass partitions between sinks and seating areas, and ensured that all salon chairs were six feet apart, along with proper air circulation from open windows. “They never let us open,” she said, while adding that she is unable to reopen outside because her salon specializes in hair color, and using chemicals outside is prohibited. ( “…Salons in San Francisco had been closed since March and were only notified they could reopen on Sept. 1 for outdoor hair styling services only. )
“We have been shut down for so long, not just me, but most of the small businesses and I just can’t – it’s a feeling – a feeling of being deflated, helpless and honestly beaten down,” Kious, said.
“I have been fighting for six months for a business that took me 12 years to build to reopen,” she explained. “I am a single mom, I have two small children, and I have no income.”…
Kious said that the area where her salon is located has turned into “a third world country,” saying that “every other storefront is completely vacant and shut down and boarded up.”…
“And because of the shutdown, and the store closures, we’ve lost people, my clients, and my employees, and that is due to the politics in San Francisco,” she said, adding that the homeless population is “everywhere” and “defecating” all over the city...
“It has gotten so extreme,” she said. “It is so night and day from what it was a year ago, that everyone is fleeing.”…
It is understandable that this shop owner is upset about her business shut-down and what it has done to her years of work. Stylists, like my mother, stand on their feet for long hours, use chemical dyes to make women look younger etc, but it is how they earn their living for their families. They try desperately to go by the rules placed upon them during this pandemic. No wonder she is furious that the standards of personal engagement are for some but not all. She has lost customers due to the shut-downs that she may never regain but also because people are fleeing from the cities due to the violence and destruction. In American, small or large businesses should not have to board-up except for extreme weather…not a climate of fear brought on by people. Our son just returned from California where the hotel he was staying in was boarding up their windows because of “protesters” outside. They also warned their customers, “… you might not want to go out there.”
Every woman wants to be beautiful. There is no problem with dying the hair if it helps take some years off…but women who can’t get this done by a professional because of regulations…regardless of what they can pay or who they may be…can take themselves down to the local beauty supply store, if it’s open, and buy a box that does the trick!
All small businesses have to be reopened as soon as possible. Large department stores are also closing, leaving thousands without jobs. These hardworking men and women need to have their livelihood restored. Congratulations to Erica who braved the possible backlash of revealing those who preach to us through the media and do something different in real life. Most people I know have turned a deaf ear to all they have to say.
Thanks, Mother, for all the years that you worked so hard in your salon to be a provider for your family and also for being a good citizen. I wish there were more like you…with respect for people and property.
We, as women and men, thank the salon workers and owners…as well as the small barbershops around the country, who are finally opening with proper caution. The COST to you and your small business has been great. We won’t forget you. Hang in there!
SUN.…Have you walked outside the air-conditioning and just felt the warmth of the summer sun on your face? There is something relaxing about drinking in the gift of God…bright, calming sun.
FLOWERS…Today we are going to think about all the beauty that summer brings…FLOWERS. My rose garden is a delight. When I reach for a new, glorious bud or an open bright, red bloom, I can truly say that all other thoughts leave my mind. They are perfection as they raise their long stems toward the heavens.
Oaks….The trees that shade us from the hot, summer sun and give the birds their perch…we honor you for you will probably still stand long after we are gone to God above.
BIRDS…The song of BIRDS are clearly heard each morning. Occasionally, I am at the right place and time to photograph a bird…not just any little bird…but the unusual, big birds.
BUTTERFLIES... Plant some seeds in your garden. You will be amazed at how fast they will grow into colorful blooms that the butterflies love. After they bloom, collect the old blossoms for the seeds. Shovel some dirt over the old flowers and watch them come up again. Giant sunflowers will do the same.
Rain that showers down the blessings of a fresh day. Filling our lakes and rivers that run into the oceans blue.
WAVES…If you love the sound of the waves lapping on the shore, the stretch of Beaches and the soft, smooth sand, you have found the perfect summer. Here, in Florida, we also have sand dunes. Once I encountered a 6 ft. alligator coming up the beach and slowly making his way into one of the sand dunes. He seemed to pay no attention that humans were sharing this lovely spot with him. THE JOY of SUMMER CAN BE ALL YOURS!
LOOK AROUND YOU AT GOD’S CREATION.
Enjoy the summer video below.
VIDEO FOR YOUR PLEASURE Turn up your sound
Living in Florida has its advantages…especially if you are a Space Geek. I can walk out my door…onto the driveway in front of my house and have a view of the most incredible launches from Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA. (Kennedy Space Center) Of course, it isn’t exactly like actually being there when everyone can feel the tremendous roar and vibrations of the massive engines. Nevertheless, on February 6, 2018, the most powerful operational rocket in the world made a successful test flight. The cheers of the thousands who came to Florida to view it in person give us a sense of the excitement of people from around the world, as well as Americans. The prospects of space flight and new space ventures are beyond imagination. Thanks to the fine engineers and employees at SpaceX and CEO Elon Musk, the future looks bright. We all want to know more about places like Mars and beyond! Your Grandchildren and their children may very well know the mysteries in space or even visit the glories of God’s great universe.
SPACEX released these words and a video after the successful launch of the Falcon Heavy rocket:
“Following its first test launch, Falcon Heavy is now the most powerful operational rocket in the world by a factor of two. With the ability to lift into orbit nearly 64 metric tons (141,000 lb)—a mass greater than a 737 jetliner loaded with passengers, crew, luggage and fuel–Falcon Heavy can lift more than twice the payload of the next closest operational vehicle, the Delta IV Heavy, at one-third the cost. Falcon Heavy draws upon the proven heritage and reliability of Falcon 9. Its first stage is composed of three Falcon 9 nine-engine cores whose 27 Merlin engines together generate more than 5 million pounds of thrust at liftoff, equal to approximately eighteen 747 aircraft. Only the Saturn V moon rocket, last flown in 1973, delivered more payload to orbit. Falcon Heavy was designed from the outset to carry humans into space and restores the possibility of flying missions with crew to the Moon or Mars.”
The side boosters were seen coming back to earth and safely landing upright, which makes them reusable rather than landing somewhere in the ocean. A great looking red Tesler Roadster also took the ride. Clever!
In case you were working at 1:30 Eastern Standard Time or asleep on the other side of the world…and missed it. Here is a video of the excitement about Falcon Heavy.
Help is pouring into Florida from many states around the country. Not only are they the National Guard but also Power Companies that have staged hundreds of trucks ready to move. As of 9-16, there are still people in Florida without power, but they are continuing work diligently on it. This must be very hard for many after this many days since Irma went through the state.
Thank you! Thank you for all the help.
Here are a few pictures of the devastation and suffering of the people who have lost so much when Hurrican Irma hit Florida and moved further up the Eastern U.S. Some reports feel that the loss of life and property was not as severe as it could have been. Nevertheless, those who lived through it and have little left are getting help as quickly as possible thanks to the quick response around the nation. It is greatly appreciated
Examples of the National Guard’s readiness and movement toward Florida is shown on the video below. The Guard came from many areas.
Again, we thank all the FIRST RESPONDERS and VOLUNTEERS from the state of Florida and every state that has come to bring help. There is so much to be done to recover.
by Staff Sargeant Alex Blaum CLICK VIDEO
Update: Irma has passed and now for Florida and Texas, as well as some other states on the East of the U.S. In Florida, it is in the 95-degree range…very hot and humid with no way to cool off. It is a major clean up time. Many are still without power which means that everything is more difficult.
This music and words are dedicated to our friends and family in Florida.
Have courage. Our thoughts and our prayers are with you as you recover.
May you be blessed.
from Boyer Writes
Nestled in the center of Florida, USA, is a tiny town called Howey in the Hills. Yes, there are actually hills here, as the center of the state has beautiful rolling hills that visitors to the state rarely see. There is much more to Florida than theme parks.
Let me introduce you to Howey. It has one blinking light, a caring and protective police force, one small library, a doctor’s office, post office, a convenience store with gas and a market with a deli, and two beauty salons. An active Community church holds a live nativity scene each year, often with farm animals. Recently our 101 year old resident turned his work of art landscaping into the new town’s Blevins Patriot Park. Visitors often come there to salute those who have served in our country’s military.
The people are friendly and stop to chat as they walk their dogs along the lake front. Gorgeous sunrises are seen early in the morning across beautiful Little Lake Harris. The moss sways gently in the oak trees and the birds arrive each winter from the north to share the trees and lake with the resident birds…like the Sandhill Cranes that roam around the yards.
This town is in Lake County, Florida that gives good fire and rescue service. A brand-new grocery is just across the bridge and several up-scale restaurants at a conference center and a golf course is a short distance from the one stop light. Crime rate is extremely low. A modern school for special needs students is just down the road from the lake. Who would not want to live here? If it ever snowed (which it doesn’t) one could sled down our hills right into the lake. Which might not be a good idea for alligators can occasionally be seen. Boaters fish and once in a while a pontoon airplane lands and takes off.
Each year Howey in the Hills has a Christmas parade. There are activities for all ages and at night lighted boats sail along the lake shore. Small towns close to Howey send their high school bands and color guards to join the festivities along the lake. Eat your heart out if you are sitting in snow and ice. (Notice the school twirlers aren’t wearing snow suits). How many towns have Llamas dressed for Christmas in their parades? These gentle creatures come to show off every year.
Since most of our readers will not be here for this Christmas, we would like to share the spirit of Christmas from our little town with you. God’s blessings on this wonderful time of year.
We cannot forget our Santa Claus who brings up the end of the parade.
Video of Santa at Howey Christmas Parade (Turn on sound)
He lives in our town in Florida. Woody Blevins is turning 101 this year. Over the years our small town of Howey in the Hills has watched Woody get up each morning; work his ornamental garden, care for the flowers and make his town and ours a more beautiful place. His lovely wife, Leah, who is a excellent pianist, has worked in the garden along side of Woody.
Let’s take a lesson from a dear man who just wants to leave this world “a better place.” Happy Birthday, Woody!
Click to hear Woody at 101 ( Turn up your volume to hear Woody better.)
How wonderful are the winters in Florida! Of course this is why we have so many “snow birds” (People from the north coming south). I am certain at this point most anyone in the Boston-New York areas would love to simply get away from the snow drifts and see a beautiful cherry blossom on a tree!
I really hate to rub it in to those with icicles dangling from their heavy winter coats, but just outside my house a cherry tree is beginning to put out a lovely pink blossom. This, of course, reminds me of the two great trips that I have had to Japan…neither of which were during the cherry blossom time. I may have to make a trip to Washington, D.C. to see them in full bloom one spring soon….when they get finished with winter.
This blog is for all those winter weary people who would more than love to have a little spring to come their way. You have endured much; shoveled much….and deserve a break! We here in Florida have not forgotten the people of the Great Lakes and Minnesota. So get yourself something hot to drink and enjoy a breath of Spring with some soothing piano music. Winter won’t last forever. Enjoy!
The wildlife of Florida is especially appreciated by those of us who see it daily. Each morning, just like clockwork, the beautiful white egrets from Bird Island stretch their wide wings and in formation fly over our neighborhood. The estimate is about 30-40 of them. Later in the day, they fly back to their beloved island where only a few boats pass by.
A less viewed part of the Florida wildlife is the Florida panther which is on the endangered list.
The video you are about to see is one of rescue and surgery of a Florida panther that was struck by a car. It is heart-warming to see its release back into the wild.
Most people have not heard of Howey in the Hills, Florida, USA, but they are quite familiar with Disney World or other theme parks around central Florida. Howey wishes you a MERRY CHRISTMAS and a HAPPY NEW YEAR!
What is this small town like? The deep, red sun rises each morning over the lake with no snow or ice. The cypress trees blow gently and the birds from Bird Island parade overhead. An occasional alligator can be seen and the cranes wade through the grasses. Yes, it is a special place. It is a wonderful, small town where neighbors know each other; dogs are welcome and people stop to chat as they walk them along Little Lake Harris. The police and fire departments are appreciated; the schools are honored, and the small businesses and residents are asked to take part in a great Christmas parade. Where else would one find llamas dressed to welcome such a great holiday? Take a look below.
|Another free digital slideshow by Smilebox|
I heard their loud calls this morning and knew the Sandhill cranes were strolling through my yard. Most of the time the high-pitched call is to warn the others that something or someone is close by. I have found that if I am quiet, that I can walk up to them with no problem. They do not seem to fear the human as other birds do. Here in Florida, these birds can be seen walking through the neighborhoods in a slow, methodical style. Often one can see them in large numbers in a more rural setting.
The Florida Sandhill Crane is far less common than cranes in other states. Only about 5,000 are remaining. Building projects drive them out of their areas for reproducing. However, in Florida, they are protected. Anyone harming them will receive a huge fine. Their species is under protection of state and federal law.
“Since the loss of habitat is a somewhat controllable cause of a declining population, habitat preservation is a valuable management measure. The current outlook for the Florida sandhill crane, if it can be maintained on the protected habitats, is good. Transplanting wild birds, as well as introducing captive-reared birds into suitable areas where crane numbers are low, appears to be a practical technique in the management of this threatened species. It is hoped that these management strategies, plus continued ecological research, will prevent the Florida sandhill crane from reaching a more critical status.“
Sandhill Cranes can be found from Alaska to Florida with journeys in areas in between. So you are not certain if you have seen a sandhill crane? I have a treat for you filmed in Alaska. It is an interesting story about a goose that thought he was a sandhill crane.
For your viewing enjoyment, I give you the elegant sandhill crane…and a goose:
When visiting Florida, one may want to find the small towns with colorful history. Some were the bean or celery capitals of the world at one time. Most have a small museum with pictures or plaques telling what happened there.
Take Ybor City, near Tampa, for instance. It had everything from the Rough Rider Army to the mafia trying to control the area. Tampa crime started with Charlie Wall who in the 1920s controlled a number of gambling rackets…as well as corrupt officials. His headquarters was in the Ybor City neighborhood where he hired Italians, Cubans and others.
Today one is invited to take a stroll down the street (during the daytime is best); eat at the Columbia Restaurant ( first started by Cuban emigrants);visit a museum where you can learn about the cigar business of the past.
The Rough Riders rode through Ybor City. They were a military unit and was the 1st United States Volunteer Cavalry, one of three such regiments raised in 1898 for the Spanish-American War and the only one of the three to see action. Theodore Roosevelt, a commander of the Rough Riders, pushed for American involvement in Cuban independence. The term “Rough Riders” became famous from Buffalo Bill’s show. The Rough Riders were mainly college athletes, cowboys and ranchers.
While visiting Ybor City, you may even have time to visit the museum and see how cigars were made. Cuban tobacco made the finest cigars. Don Vicente Martinez Ybor, an influential cigar manufacturer, fled Cuba’s 10-year war of independence and came to Florida.
In 1885, Henry B. Plant built a new railroad and shipping port. Ybor acquired forty acres and began construction of his town. Here again, one of the biggest factories in the world was in Florida with 4,000 workers who were Cubans, Spaniards, Italians, Germans and Jews. With this diversity, they opened their own newspapers, restaurants, shops, and hospitals. From the opening of the first factory in 1886 until the 1930s, Ybor City was a flourishing Latin community. People paid premium prices for hand-rolled cigars. Workers were paid well and lived well. Ybor City became the ‘Cigar Capital of the World.’
Don’t let Florida fool you. It is much, much more than theme parks. There is history everywhere.
View VIDEO BELOW:
I live in Florida, USA. Most people who travel here are looking to visit the theme parks like Disney or Universal Studios. These are not the real Florida. The real Florida has a wonderful history. There are thousands of acres that are being preserved by the ranchers who still own the land.
The video below is worth seeing if you want to understand something about the history the present day men, women, and children of the real Florida.
It is a land of horses, brought here by the Spanish in the 1500’s. The horses drive the cows…some of special breeds from India. Dogs help with the round-up…and 4th and 5th generation children ride the range with the grandparents.
The environment is vast, wild, peaceful and filled with wild-life of all kinds: turkey, hogs, eagles, alligators and more. This is the real Florida. History has shown that the men who worked the miles of Florida from coast to coast were sturdy, rugged individuals. We must not forget the women who shared this land with them. They had their babies here with nothing more than a mid-wife and prayer that they would survive. These people were often referred to as Florida Crackers . They were also the Florida cowboys. Yes, before the wild-west cowboys, the Florida cowboys were here!
What were the Florida Crackers? (see video below)
- Crackers were self-reliant, simple and tough (mostly Scots Irish) immigrants who settled the backwoods of Florida.
- Came to Florida by the promise of independent living and cheap land e for raising cattle
- Crackers battled everyone from the Seminole Indians and the British army
- They also battled malaria from mosquitoes and wild animals.
- Living among the palmetto and scrub, they survived on turtles, possum, frogs, grits, cornbread and greens and whatever else they could catch.
- Historians will tell you that “cracker” originally meant “a braggart.” Some use the term today to describe country folk or someone who was born in Florida.
- The word “cracker” actually came from the sound of a whip made when rounding cattle.
What was the Florida Cracker House?
- wood-frame construction, an elevated first floor,
- a large attached front porch, a revealed fireplace, horizontal wood siding in both the exterior and interior,
- A wrap around porch with an overhang was key to beating the sun outdoors. The windows usually had netting or shutters to keep out bugs and other creatures
- Rocks or bricks made of oyster shell and lime served as pilings to keep the shelters off the ground.
- Crackers often built their homes of cypress wood, which has inherent anti-rot and anti-insect properties.
VIDEO OF THE REAL FLORIDA (Longer version video)
For this Sunday, Boyer Writes thought you may need a little break from “heavy” reading to just simply enjoying a little jazz and the beauty of SUMMER! ENJOY and HAPPY FATHER’S DAY
Ahh…the beautiful orange! I can walk outside my door here in Florida and there they are…first a small white blossom that smells so heavenly. The bees buzz everywhere. The lovely white blossom turns to a small orange that continues to grow slowly…oh so slowly until they are ready to be picked and juiced. I have to admit that my husband is better at juicing than I am. We both love our orange juice for breakfast…or any time.
Not only is orange juice healthy and a great source of vitamin C, but so great in Florida’s warm weather. While I am taking a look at our Florida history, let’s look at the orange juice industry and find out what it takes to get that orange juice to your table. Have a glass of golden, delicious….oh so refreshing orange juice!
Click on video below:
Just what is a CRACKER? If you live in the USA…and down south in Florida, you may have been asked if you are a Florida Cracker? Most people do not even know what the term means, but think of it as someone who was born in Florida.
The real meaning is the cracking noise that Florida cowboys made with their whips. In fact, there is also a Florida Cracker Horse. Now, this is a “cracker” that you do not want to miss. If you are one of our winter visitors or have moved to Florida because of our wonderful winters, you may want to know more about Florida history. We are surely known for our oranges and great things that we grow here. However, there are many things that roam our state and that are useful to all of us. Watch this video. See this wonderful “Florida cracker” with the funny gait. Come on down, “you all”. Florida has more to offer than you can imagine! Don’t be fooled. We are more than Disney World and smooth sand beaches. Take a look.