Wednesday 6 October 2010

I hope you dance . . .

Dancing with the feet is one thing, but dancing with the heart is another.
~Author Unknown

One of my favourite memories of visiting my family this past summer was watching my little grandson dance. He would be playing with his toys and then a song would come on the radio or the television that would capture his attention. All of a sudden he would stop whatever it was he was doing and stand completely still . . . and then it would start. At first just a few movements of his head and then it would work it’s whole way down his body and within just a few seconds his whole body would be moving in rhythm to the music and he would be dancing with total and complete abandon. He didn’t care that anyone was watching. I doubt he even noticed. He was dancing and in his own little world, enveloped by sweet music and giving his whole self over to his own sense of rhythm. It was charming. It was beautiful. It was wonderful to watch.

Small children are like that. They have no sense of fear really, no self consciousness. They hear a song and they give themselves over to it. They don’t care about what you or I think, or what anyone thinks really. They just hear the music and they dance, with abandon and pure pleasure. Completely innocent of all the cares and woes of the world, they dance. They dance because they hear the music and they listen to how it makes them feel. They dance because they are in tune with their inner bliss. They dance because they want to.

Sometimes when I am alone I dance. I just listen to the music and I close my eyes and go with the flow. It’s a wonderful feeling . . . invigorating and inspiring. For those few moments I can do anything, be anything . . . and I feel beautiful. The music envelopes me and carryies me away to a place where nothing and nobody else matters. It’s as if I am a bird and I am flying, soaring through the air above this earthly realm, my own spirit carrying me to places only my inner voice can see or reach. For a few moments I am a child again . . . and I am free to be me, free of all thoughts and cares and woes. It’s a wonderful feeling.

Really we should dance through life. We should listen to the music around us as it speaks to our soul. We should happily go with the flow and abandon ourselves to feeling and loving and enjoying every scrap of our lives that we can, without worrying about anyone watching us or what others will think . . . finding our inner bliss and embracing it totally. Perhaps at first we will only be comfortable moving our heads a little bit, but as we free our spirits even more, we should feel the dance working it’s way down our whole body until we are totally involved and dancing in the deep end with both feet.

Too many of us live our lives just in passing, for fear of being judged, or hurt. We are afraid to listen to the music around us, afraid to abandon ourselves to the dance. We spend our lives sitting on the sidelines and letting it pass us by. Life has so much more to offer us than just a seat on the side . . . We need to grab it and hang on and go, just go with the flow, enjoying the music of our lives and wherever it may take us.

Just my thoughts on this early October Wednesday morning. I hope you have a beautiful day today and that . . . . you dance.

I have this old handwritten cookbook that my ex mother in law gave me back in the 1970’s when I was first married. It’s pages are quite splattered now and the cover is falling off and some of the pages are getting hard to read. I really need to get a new notebook and copy the recipes over before they are lost forever. One of my favourites from this book is this little gem. It’s a great way to use up leftover cooked chicken or turkey for that matter!

*Hot Chicken Salad*
Serves 4
Printable Recipe

I can remember my mother serving this to the ladies that came for lunch on occasion when I was a girl. My mother in law used to serve it to her friends as well. It was simple to make, but "oh-so-delicious" when it was done. A really wonderful way of dressing up leftovers and making them seem truly special. Eating it made you feel special, coz it was like "Ladies's Lunch" stuff!

3 cups of cubed cooked chicken
½ cup chopped toasted almonds
1 TBS grated onion
1 ½ TBS fresh lemon juice
¼ tsp pepper
1 cup good quality mayonnaise (I use Hellmann’s)
1 ½ cups of diced celery
1 ½ cups grated medium cheddar cheese
1 ½ cups crushed potato crisps (chips)

Preheat oven to 180*C/375*F. Lightly grease a 1 litre casserole dish and set aside.

Combine chicken, almonds, grated onion, lemon juice, celery, and pepper in mixing bowl. Add mayonnaise and mix it all together well. Place in the prepared casserole dish, smoothing the top. Scatter the grated cheese over top and then sprinkle on the crushed potato crisps. (you can use flavoured ones if you want. I like the cheese and onion ones) Cover with aluminium foil.

Bake for approximately 25 minutes. Remove the foil and bake for another 10 minutes, or until bubbling and nicely starting to brown. Remove from the oven and let sit for about 10 minutes before serving.

I like to bake a batch of homemade biscuits to serve with this, along with a nice mixed salad of lettuce greens, cucumber, radish and tomato. Delicious!

In The English Kitchen today, a delicious Ginger and Pear Upside-down Pudding!


  1. I love to dance when I am on my own too:) I agree with you about children too, if only we could grow up with the same freedom and abandonment of childhood.

    both your recipes today are tempting me, I made a pinapple upside down cake at the weekend and it was soooooooooo good. I had not made one since my children were small and considering my youngest is 35 this month, it was long overdue. My granddaughters loved it.
    You are responsible for my renewed interest in baking and cooking in general. I would like to thank you very much Marie. You are an inspiration on several differing levels.



  2. My little three year old granddaughter Amy Grace goes to ballet now. I asked her over the phone to show me her new dance steps. From what I could hear from her Dad asking her what she was doing whilst on the phone to Grandma, I could tell she was giving it her all! lol
    It was a deligtful moment.
    I too love to dance spontaneaously. I might just dance out the room whilst I disappear to make a cuppa. Bryan usually just rolls his eyes to heaven ad gives his head a little nod at times like those.
    Dancing is a pure release of happiness.
    I hope you are feeling a wee bit better today Marie. Must be all that
    Jeanie xxxxx

  3. Dancing is wonderful and I don't do it enough. I'll have to work on that one! The hot chicken salad sounds wonderful! I have an old cookbook too. It's not handwritten but the pages are worn and falling out. It still gets used but gently. I did manage to find another in much better shape in a used book store so now I have a replacement on hand, but yours cannot be replaced. What a treasure you have there. Hope you get it copied soon.

  4. Personally, I am a skilled exponent of the art of figurative dancing. It's ever so easy, you don't even need real music; just the music in your head. You may see my feet tap or my eyes dance or a little giggle gurgle - that's me and the music in my head.

  5. Sweet, fun post, Marie! Funnily enough, lately I realized I need to revisit dance--get the body moving in a different way, and need to be more spontaneous with dancing and movement and love this body I've got... I don't do this enough. Hope you are feeling better and up and dancing soon, my frined ;o) Be taking good care... LOVE YOU LOTS ((BIG HUGS))

  6. I love to dance...I always have music going on in my I walk each morning, I am always singing too! Love your recipes! ;D

  7. A great post today. How often are we too self conscious to really feel and experience the world around us? The recipe sounds yummy. I hope you are feeling better today!


Your comments mean the world to me, and while I may not be able to address each one individually, each one is important to me and each one counts. Thanks so much!