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Saturday, July 9, 2016

Heart Healthy Habits

Join in the Celebration Link-up via #celebratelu on Twitter 
or at Ruth's Blog-Discover Play Build today!

Take a look at this picture below:


Yes, it's large!  It's large because this is a big celebration!  For the past 16 days, I've been doing better.  Better with:
  • eating a healthy breakfast of either oatmeal (with skim milk) or cheerios (with skim milk).
  • trying to drink more water, downing two of these or so water bottles per day
  • and (drum-roll please) I've rejoined the rec center to exercise (9 visits in the last 14 days).  
Yay!!

The healthier me is a happier me.  I see what my dad is going through lately with his health problems and I know that I don't want to end up with Type II Diabetes...I hate seeing what's happening with his circulation, blood sugar and breathing as well as heart problems.  I want to live a healthier life.  I've made changes and I know the payoff is great.

So here's to celebrating heart healthy habits!  What healthy habits can you celebrate?

Tuesday, July 5, 2016

A Monkey's Aunt and Other Zoo Dos


It's Tuesday and that means Slice of Life!  Join in the fun at Two Writing Teachers!

Sunday was family fun day for us-time to spend together and enjoy the four of us.  We spun the wheel of life and agreed to having a day out at the zoo!  We piled into the van on the perfect 78 degree partly cloudy July day and trekked up to Cleveland.


WE experienced many moments to treasure...
  • walking confidently into the zoo entrance and the discussion about entering Kindergarten 
  • consulting the zoo map first to determine where we'd head to see the elephants
  • dipping into our Dippin' Dots while we watched the elephant dine on it's hay
  • waiting in line for a long time for the tram and then changing to go see the giraffes
  • riding on the carousel and Natalie picking the leopard (the first animal to be added to the new carousel) and nervously riding on her own without mom
  • looking at the water pool and redirecting water from the pumps to flow into the pipes and reach the end of the pool
  • watching the giraffes plod along in their large play area searching for yummies to eat
  • seeing the big rhinos
  • talking to the zoologist about the leopard
  • seeing Monkey Island and the Colobus Monkey along with the Klipsinger deer
  • visiting the Sarah Allison Steffee Center for Zoological Medicine-and being disappointed there were no animals being checked out
  • riding the tram to see the primates and fish
  • cooling off with refreshing water from the drinking fountain
One of our funniest moments was at Monkey Island where Kam and Nat posed for a picture with a bronze monkey...
I told Kam, "Go be a monkey's uncle!" and Nat agreed, "...and I'll be a Monkey's aunt!"  We started laughing and laughing.  I just knew this had to be my Tuesday slice!  I looked up information about the idiom and from what I read, the phrase, "Well, I'll be a monkey's uncle" started up in the late 1800's and early 1900's used as an expression to show shock and amazement.  We were shocked and amazed at Nattie's response.


Friday, July 1, 2016

Hunting for Treasure, Our Pleasure



Hard to believe that we've settled into summer like a tiny dog curled up on it's owner's lap under the gentle breeze of the ceiling fan.  I'm glad for that because I felt like it was never going to happen.  My dad finally came home from the hospital and is on the mend.  It was an ugly experience-sparing the details-just glad he's home.

On Tuesday, I had the pleasure of going on a nature treasure hunt with Natalie.  We had a great hunting list to work from and found lots of little details during our walk.  You can see the original pdf list here.  I took a picture of the list and imported the picture into my notepad so we could check off the items digitally as we took the pictures of nature's treasures on our walk.


Natalie and I had lots of great conversations about the beautiful flowers, birds and other things on our walk.  Here are a few of the pictures of items we found from the list, which I captured in a collage frame.


We were feeling disappointed that we could hear the birds but we couldn't see them.  Our ears telling us the birdies were out in full force but were playing hide and seek.  We were feeling sad that we didn't see the beautiful butterfly we were looking for either.  Maybe next time right?  We were celebrating pleasure in finding nature's treasure as we settled into summer.

Thanks to Ruth Ayres for hosting the weekly #celebratelu at her blog, Discover, Play, Build.

Tuesday, June 28, 2016

A Growing Heart



Thank you to the Two Writing Teachers Group for hosting the weekly Slice of Life each Tuesday.  Click here to read more slices.

Our Summer has launched with lots of car time driving back and forth to the hospital or my parents' house as my dad was diagnosed with a host of medical problems.  It's been a rough time for the whole family.  The good news is he's home now recovering.  During our car rides, I've had lots of conversations with Natalie and Kam.  I love these conversations!  They are just the right thing to cheer me up when I could easily be wading knee deep in tears as I see my parents aging before my eyes.

Yesterday's conversation revolved around a growing heart.  Natalie shared (in a matter-of-fact sort of way) that she wanted to thank Kameron and me for showing her how to be sharing and caring.  "You're making my heart grow big and strong!"

She got me smiling, ear-to-ear!



Sunday, June 19, 2016

Sitting by the Fires


Sitting by the fires...special memories of my dad on Father's Day!
One of the special things I’ll remember about my dad is how much he loves sitting by the backyard campfires.  My dad used to volunteer on the town fire department where he learned about fire and then taught us.  He's always respected fire.  Just from watching him, it was obvious that he was meticulous about making sure every piece of starter paper, kindling stick, branch, and log was perfectly arranged before the fire was started.  There would always be a large bucket of water off to the side in case of fire jumping to a place it wasn’t wanted.  Once the kindling caught, the fire would begin to burn brightly in the tire rim urn outlined with bricks.  When old enough, the kids were finally allowed to help build and start the fire and use the coveted poker stick!  The “poker stick” was the perfect tool to nudge and rearrange logs so that the embers continued to flicker-flame and catch the other logs ablaze causing the fire to burn into the wee hours of the morning.

Gathering around the fire made for an inviting time together, especially on cool summer and fall nights.  Anyone and everyone who came to the Farkas Fire Pit always had a good time.  The crowd was sometimes just family, sometimes just friends, sometimes old and young-or just married couples on a date night away from the kids.   The point is, no matter who gathered to exchange conversation, tell a story or play games, Dad’s cozy fire was always put together with love.  As my sister-in-law so lovingly puts it, the fire pit was a place to warm the cockles of our hearts. 

Anyone who pulled up a chair to gather there learned that nature was always part of the experience as well.  Watching the moon come up on the horizon, play hide and seek behind the clouds and shine brightly in the midnight sky was especially appealing.  Listening to the chirp and tweet of the crickets, the buzz of the cicada and the often annoying buzz of the mosquito were so pleasant when heard through dad’s ears.  

Dad always noticed the formation of the clouds as signals for when to douse the fire as the lightning would dance in the sky. Dad would watch for planes heading for other airport destinations determining if they were headed east, west, or north of our house.  He taught us to enjoy nature’s outdoor treat while we sat to chat!  Sitting by the fires is a special experience I’ll always remember with DAD!  Thanks Dad, for all of these fireside experiences!  Love you! Happy Father's Day!

Sunday, May 29, 2016

Changing Views


Today's #Digilit Sunday is all about perspective..."Changing My View"
"Perspective has a Latin root meaning "look through" or "perceive," and all the meanings of perspective have something to do with looking. If you observe the world from a dog's perspective, you see through the dog's eyes. In drawing, perspective gives your drawing the appearance of depth or distance. If we say someone "has perspective," we mean she has a sensible outlook on life."     Source:  Vocabulary.com

I wanted to spend today sharing about how what I learned from the #educoach tweet chat on Thursday changed my view.

The chat was focused on responding to questions from Chapters 8 and 9 from the book, Better Conversations by Jim Knight.  I haven't read the book, yet.  So, I mostly lurked during the chat.  There were some resources shared that helped me to learn about having "Better Conversations".

The first is the idea of empathy...watch this short digital text on "Empathy" and I'll see you on the other side:



The big takeaway from this video for me is that "empathy fuels connection" and by being connected, I can make a situation better.  As I build relationships with the teams of teachers, I aim to better my connections.  One of the quotes I really related to was "I know what it's like and you're not alone."  I will also be more cognizant of trying not to "silver-line" things.  

The other source of learning I connected with from the chat was the video Kathy Perret shared in her tweet about body language that she learned from Elena Aguilar, author of The Art of Coaching which is officially on my TBR pile.
Take the time to watch this Ted Talk...body language has an amazing impact on perception!

I have realized that my body language is doing a lot of non-verbal speaking.  The way others see my body responding and the way I see myself has a lot to do with how I'm communicating.  If I want to have better conversations and a more emphatic perspective, my body language must be considered in the conversations.

I connect this to #digilit Sunday as I change my views to better understand others while living, learning and leading in my role as an instructional coach.


A special thank you to Margaret Simon for hosting #digilit Sunday and inviting me to write on the topic to share with others.  Head there now and check out other responses to "Perspective".

Saturday, May 28, 2016

A Journey's End, A Caravan's Beginning


Thanks to Ruth Ayers for hosting the #Celebratelu each week!  Head there to read more celebrations!


Reaching a point in our lives where "A Journey" felt like it was nearing its end, we decided to go car shopping.


We started checking out new cars.  At first, we ad shopped, window shopped and web shopped.  We checked out colors, models and styles.  We looked some more...

Our next step was to test drive.  We found a model we liked but weren't 100% sure.  The style and model were ok but we weren't sold on the color.  We decided to web shop for the exact color we wanted as a salesman suggested it wasn't very popular and we'd have a hard time finding it in stock.  That color was true blue pearl.  We used the web to narrow our search-it was an amazing tool in locating model, style and color within our area.

On Monday we piled into the car as a family and went for it!  This was the Caravan's  beginning.   We traded our Journey, did a test drive and sat down with the salesman to write up the deal.  A little negotiating ensued, all user-friendly! By 8:30, we had a deal and a new car!  Woo-hoo!  At deal's signing, the whole family rang the brass bell brought out by the salesman and the whole place cheered!  So exciting for our children to be a part of the experience!

Our new car-after signing the deal Monday night 5-23-16

Today, we dropped off the old car and picked up the new one.  Here's to celebrating new beginnings!  A big shout out to Mark D. at the Progressive Dealer in Massillon!


Sunday, May 22, 2016

Celebrating at Life's End

Thank you to Ruth Ayres for Hosting the Weekly #CelebrateLu!



Yesterday, I attended a beautiful celebration of the life of the wonderful lady pictured:  Carolyn Becknell.  I have the privilege of working with 3 of her daughters (2 of them directly).  Her four daughters are dedicated and strong women who reaped the benefits of many gifts from their mom.  Yesterday's celebration perfectly demonstrated how she modeled unyielding strength and dignity all the way up to the end of her life.


Each of her daughters got up and eulogized their mom in their own special way.  It started with Sherry-the daughter Hal and Carolyn adopted.  She honored her mom by reading the letter her mom wrote on the day she was adopted.  It was so special to hear the details of how Sherry came to be the daughter Carolyn and Hal had hoped for after they were first married.

Then, Saundra spoke and thanked her mom for all of the wonderful things she'd done and taught her.  Her talent was shared in her written words.  Sauni's message was sweetly delivered just matching her personality.  As I listened to her, I prayed that she could make it through.  She did it!   Anyone listening would quickly know that "Sauni Kay" loved her mom dearly.

Next, Heather, the music teacher of the family, shared her talent and love for her mom through a song she'd written.  She played the piano as she sang.  She openly shared that she'd just written the chords to go with the song at 4 am the night or morning before the celebration.  The song was beautiful and moving.

Finally, Christy shared her talent for humor yet deep thinking as she shared her "Top 10" List.  The list was sprinkled with humor (apparent in Christy's witty personality) and serious times too ending with her #1 time with Carolyn.  She shared how Carolyn comforted her daughter even though it was she who was nearing the end of life.

Our little family attended the celebration together.  It was raining and my daughter noted that it was probably raining tears because everyone was sad that Carolyn passed.  Natalie shared how she was glad Carolyn's body was still here but that her soul was now in Heaven.  I told her that I knew Carolyn was in Heaven as an angel and her spirit was learning to fly especially with the beautiful music that her children were making.

Carolyn will live on in the beauty and love of all of her daughters and their children.  Her life here making an impact on those who knew her and even those who didn't.  It was quite a celebration of her life's end.

Tuesday, May 17, 2016

Stop Thief!

Slice of Life Tuesday @Two Writing Teachers
It keeps happening!  The Thief returns again and again,
every time taking a little more, 
a little more, 
a little more...

At first, a tiny bit gone missing noticed by few, 
questioned by some, 
uncertain for one...

More stealing happening over the years, 
the memories of us and things shared beginning to disappear...

I hate the thief!  
Wondering why we're all the target?

So much pain and sadness...
especially for one who knows every day and one who doesn't.

The dementia is taking its toll on my mom...it's wearing thin on my dad.  
She always seems to know 
me-
but not dad.  

Dad, the strong man
But growing weary
and
weak
the mood swings...the anger, 
the words that won't come for her
They are gone...the physical motions take their place
Disrupting the flow-
Of Peace and Tranquillity 
Happiness gone missing...

The latest triggers-lawn mowing, food, junk mail, and the checkbook...
She doesn't mean it.  
It's not her.  
It's. NOT. HER.

I pray for patience for the whole family.  Wishing Dementia,
the thief,
would stop the taking and pain-bringing.


Sunday, May 1, 2016

Learning about Thing Link

DigitLit Sunday
Thanks to MargaretGSimon for hosting!
On Thursday, I attended the meeting at the middle school with parents and the seventh grade teachers to learn about how the students will be going one to one with Chromebooks.  It was a great learning opportunity.  I learned about how the seventh grade teachers are currently using Google Classroom and tools they added to the classroom stream to allow for digital learning assignments.

One of the assignments that I learned about is called a ThingLink.  The ThingLinks allow for students to explore a group of themed links (similar to padlet) so that the images, videos, slideshows can be viewed right within the classroom stream via the thinglink website.  It allows the creator to collect links to external sites and strategically place them throughout the image chosen for the background.

Here is my first thinglink.  It's about summer reading.


I enjoyed learning how to make it as the site had helpful video tutorials that I could watch to learn more about the product and how to use it.  I also see the potential as an inquiry project that could showcase final work of an individual or collaborative group work.  I think the possibilities are endless.  Try it out and see what you think.  Here is the link to sign up for an account.


I wonder if you've used Thinglink before and for what function?  Please share in the comments below.  Thanks and happy learning!

Saturday, April 30, 2016

Joy in the Busyness of the Week


Thank you to Ruth Ayres for hosting 
the #celebratelu this week at her blog


Like all educators in the field right now, as we near the end of the year, our weeks get busier and busier.  This week was full of something special to do each day!

Sunday-
Last day of pre-school PSR Celebration.  We've been getting up early on Sundays to get ready for pre-school PSR (religion class) to learn about God.  The children each received a certificate of completion from their teachers.  Natalie adored them and is disappointed that we're finished with class until next year.

The Baseball Parade around the city's circle!  It was so special-I could not stop smiling as Natalie was singing to anyone who would listen, "I love my city!  My city is awesome!" over and over.  I bubbled and bubbled with giggles, smiles and happy eyes...

Monday-The Inter-generational band concert between the Hudson Middle School 8th grade band and New Horizons (the band my husband joined to learn how to play the bass).  He's still going strong and making progress.  The music joyfully blended as the two bands joined together conducted by an instructor from Baldwin Wallace College.  So moving.  I gave them a standing ovation.  They sounded amazing even though they practiced together only once...

Tuesday-Another T-ball game for Nattie.  It was freezing cold at game time and part of the field was under water.  Despite the cold and mud, the kids had a ball doing their thing.  It was quite a hoot to watch the little guys and gals playing together...3 innings of joy!

Wednesday-Evening work time with my friend Rosemary.  We designed a framework and curriculum for a summer ELL K-2 reading program that will take place at two of the buildings in the district for 8 weeks.  Looking forward to training the teachers and seeing the fruits of our work at the end of summer.

Thursday-I attended a meeting at the middle school to learn about going 1-to-1 with Chromebooks for next year.  The teachers had an example of a Google Classroom Stream with various assignments.  I learned about some new tools-Thinglink, EDPuzzle, and Gizmos.  Have you heard of these?  I am looking forward to seeing more.  I know Kam will be engaged with lots of interesting learning projects next year.

Friday-I celebrated after work with some friends.  My happiest moment ended in playing dollies with Natalie.  She picked up her two friends and asked me to play.  We had conversation around the two friends going out and seeing a movie, pretend laughing at the theater, and walking home together when the movie ended.  It was so cute...I know I fell asleep with a smile on my face thinking about the joy she brings me.



Whew!  T-ball again today-wondering if the game will be cancelled...stay tuned.  Celebrating joy in the time to write and reflect on a busy week.

Tuesday, April 19, 2016

Play Ball!


Under the bright, April sky, the Angels took to the field for their first, dramatic, three inning game of the season!  The team was all decked-out with bright red baseball caps and t's along with gray pants and black socks. They brought along their water bottles, baseball bags, and spikes.  The team's first opponent was the Oakland A's.

The coach/ump called "Play Ball!" And the team batted around the order until the ninth batter hitting cleanup cleared the bases...what a hoot!  For just three innings, seeing these little guys and gals step up to play a game most of them never did before just made everyone smile.  

Coach Gray recruited my help in keeping the bench organized.  I followed the batting order and kept the rotation flowing.  Bats, hats, helmets and mitts constantly abandoned by the next player up or down.  It was a fast moving game for sure.  

In the end, everyone enjoyed the game.  The team completed their first game...under the bright, April sky...and Nat, she had a ball!



Play Ball!
Team
starts
T-ball
Game on, smiles
Bats slam and kids jam
Yes, Angels played their first ball game!

Thanks to Two Writing Teachers

Sunday, April 17, 2016

Morning Wake-up Call Fibs-a Trio

Thanks to Margaret Simon for hosting
Digi-Lit Sunday

As I stretched and woke this morning, I listened to the sounds around the house.  I had to capture them quickly as I knew they would melt with the rays of the sun.  I quickly got to work, busying my fingers with tapping on the keys...here is the pay-off...three little Fibs about waking up.  And a bonus-creating with the "Poetic" app (which is a free download today!).

Waking Up

Birds
Chirp
Chirping
Sun peeking
Stretch, yawn...still sleeping
Yawn, stretch, eyes open- now awake!


Wake Up!

Call
Chirp
Chirping
No one stirs
Morning Dove calls us!
It's time to wake up sleepy heads!




Rise and Shine

pause...
Rise...
And shine!
Ready mind-
Wonder and thinking?
Heart beating, eyes blinking... it's time!


So, I downloaded it and started playing with the words from the first Fib...the pic above shows my result.  It's fun to play...with words and poetry on a slow, sleepy, Sunday morning.  Ironically, Margaret's post today is about Revision...I needed to revise my Fibs-I left the first lines off of them...thanks for Kat's catch-I fixed.  The importance of having a buddy read or collaborating before taking it to final publishing is key.  Thanks for this reminder Margaret!

Saturday, April 16, 2016

Birds and Words

I'm celebrating with Ruth Ayers this weekend at Discover, Play, Build.  Head over and join in the celebrations.


I really dove into writing these past several weeks...I've noticed that it's made me a better listener.  I feel like I need to have a way to quickly capture words that could inspire near me or I'll forget them.  Last night was an example.  A blue jay was perched in the Japanese Cherry Tree and it was squawking up a storm.  Natalie was playing around with the iPad and since we had the patio door open, the bird did seem rather loud.

She blurted out, "Bird stop!  Stop bird! Stop."
I immediately captured her words in my enotebook and went on to write this poem...

Will the bird stop?
Stop bird, stop!
Why does the bird squawk? squawk, squawk?
What message is he sending?
Now I can see, it cat's tail bending...
Watch out! watch out!
Bird's given warning!
Watch for the cat-
Who's slinking I the morning!

So today, I'm celebrating birds and Nat's words that were inspiration for writing.



Friday, April 15, 2016

Reflection in Reverse

Happy Poetry Friday everyone!  Happy National Poetry Month too!  It's been a great month to wonder, think and reflect about words, thoughts and ideas.  Today, I wondered about what I would share for Poetry Friday.  I read the blog post by Michelle at Today's Little Ditty where today's Poetry Friday share is taking place.  I was inspired by the "Echo" idea and remembered back a long time ago when I had first written a "Reflect" poem.  After re-reading my poem and reflecting about the learning and wondering that I've been doing, I decided to revise it and do a revamp using some digital tools that I've learned about since I last wrote this poem.  So here is my "re"vision of "Reflection Day and Night":



Reflection Day and Night

Reflect
Think Constructively
Examine Closely
Imagine and Hope
Wonder of Purpose
Question
Record Thoughts, Words,
Ideas
Purposely Wonder
Reflect

Reflect
Wonder purposely
Ideas, words, thoughts, record
Question
Purpose of Wonder
Hope and Imagine
Closely Examine
Constructively Think
Reflect.

Thank you to all the poets who've been inspiring my writing and posting during National Poetry Month.  It sure has been fun to write, share and read all of the contributions being made.  A special thank you this week to Kathryn Apel and Greg Pincus for the Fib fun too.  Today's poem is not a Fib-but is a part of my regular heartbeat-always reflecting and thinking...

Tuesday, April 12, 2016

7 Days-Just the Right Amount


I was thinking about the Wonder of the Day #1666-Why Are There Seven Days in a Week?  I am glad there aren't 8-woa!  I think just one more day would make the week a little bit crazy.  And I am glad there aren't 6 because one day less would mean jamming a whole lot of stuff into less.  So, I like lucky seven.  I think it's just the right amount.  So here is my #wallowinwonder poem on days of the week.

We are all so lucky
that there are seven days
just seven little days
inside of one small week.

We are all so lucky
that there are not eight days
having eight whole days
inside of one long week.

We are all so lucky
that there are not six days
having six short days
inside of one short week.

We are all so lucky
that we have seven days
just seven important days
to take one day at a time,
one day at a time,
one hour at a time,
and sometimes-
one minute
or one
second
at
a
time...
sometimes
just the right amount

Monday, April 11, 2016

Debit or Credit


My #wallowinwonder Day 11 is a Fib.  I wrote it in response to reading about the Wonder of the Day #115 Are Debit Cards and Credit Cards the Same?  I learned about the Fib form of poetry from Greg Pincus and Kathryn Apel via the twitter stream over the weekend.

You can read more about Fibs here at Greg Pincus' blog

Here is my Fib about Debit and Credit Cards.

Debit or Credit

Cash
Stash
Debit
Or Credit
The difference is
You have it or it's a short loan


A special thank you to @amylvpoemfarm for continued inspiration to #wallowinwonder during #NationalPoetryMonth .

A Fib Filled Weekend

Thank you to the Two Writing Teachers 
for hosting the 
Tuesday Slice of Life at Two Writing Teachers.


The weekend was filled with fibs (poetic Fibs)!  With it being National Poetry Month and all, I had to share the wonderful story of how all of the Fibs began.

I waded slowly into my twitter stream after waking up in the middle of the night.  I saw this tweet:

I am always interested in learning more about poetry so I clicked on the link that took me to Greg Pincus' blog post on "How to Write a Fib!"  I thought writing Fibs is an interesting and fun way to pack a big punch in a few words.  It's basically following a Fibonacci sequence of zero, a 1 syllable word, another 1 syllable word, 2 syllables, 3 syllables, 5 syllables and 8 syllables.  I decided to give it a go and then wrote a Fib about tweeting and when Kathryn Apel shared her Fib.



Then Kathryn tweeted a response back to me...


Then some tweets later, Greg Pincus got in on the action...

Our tweets of poetic fibbery continued with these:

 and this after seeing the weather forecast


A special thank you to Kathryn Apel and Greg Pincus for the twitterverse learning and support.

Such fun writing Fibs with Twitter Friends.  And now, the challenge!  I challenge you to write a Fib-and leave in the comments to create a new collection of Fibs with slicing friends!

Sunday, April 10, 2016

Going to the Moon



Wallowing in Wonder Day 10

After, reading the Wonder of the Day, How Much Do You Weigh on the Moon?, I was inspired by a part in the last paragraph of the wonder that said, "Write a short story about what you would do on the Moon if you had the chance to go there in person. Share your story with a friend or family member."
So I thought about what it would be like to go to the moon with Nat...here is the poem about The Wonder.

Going to the Moon

Going to the Moon-
You and I together!

Hanging out having fun...
No worries about weather!

We would have to think...
about how much we'd weigh!

We'd wear special boots
so we wouldn't float away...

We could run, jump and skip!
Feeling oh-so free

Playing there on the moon...
with 1/6 the pull of gravity

I'm sure we would look-
out into the vastness of space!

Yet, know that on the moon
we'd create our own little place.

A private space trip for just you and me,
Can you imagine how special it would be?

Mother and daughter together on the moon-
Do you think we could start to plan our trip soon?

Saturday, April 9, 2016

Look for the Glow




I celebrate wallowing in wonder day 9.  I celebrate 39 days of writing and posting.  I celebrate supporting thoughts from bloggers, writers, tweeters, authors and friends.  I look for the glow...inspired by Wonder #1665 Sun Dogs-the glow around the sun...


Look for the Glow

When I think,
When I see,
When I look, 

Snow for the moisture of the Earth
Rest for the growth coming to birth

Slow for the spring in Spring's pace
Holding up on the flower's speed race

Noticing the slowing
But everything's still growing

When I look-
When I see
When I think...

Yes, the glow!  In the slow...
due to April snow in O-hi-o!

Thank you to Ruth for hosting the #celebratelu this week.  Also, thanks to Amy Ludwig VanDerwater for creating the #walllowinwonder for #nationalpoetrymonth.  It's been fun playing and learning.

Friday, April 8, 2016

Beginning a Journey



Happy Wallow in Wonder Day 8!  Happy Poetry Friday!  Happy National Poetry Month!
So much to celebrate so much to realize.  The Wonder to Wallow about was #1664 Why Can't You Drive as Fast as You Want?  I have been thinking for almost 24 hours about this...

I was thinking of speed in the figurative way and connecting it with journeys.  I was also fortunate enough to attend the Virginia Hamilton Conference at Kent State University today.  One of the speakers I met was Illustrator, Christian Robinson.  His keynote address struck me as he shared about the journey of his life as an illustrator...

All of this wallowing in wonder lead me to...Beginning a Journey!

Beginning a journey-
you are here
Start...who helps you get up to speed?
What influences around you keep you on the right track?
Control the world through your passions
Education helps as you drive along the path
You learn confidence, command and control
Sometimes you have to follow the speed limit
Going too fast or too slow creates problems
Seek Inspiration from your surroundings
As things get busy maybe it's better to slow
As things get slow maybe it's better to move fast
Study how others do their driving, learning from their techniques
Experiment with your comfort zone
Explore driving down a different road!
And now you are here!  STOP!
Where will you go next, fast or slow?
A new journey begins...
Reflect on your previous journey...
What will you take along to make this journey better?

Thank you to all the poets who've shared ideas and inspiration with me over the past week.  I am on 39 days of writing and posting...woo-hoo!  Thank you to Laura Purdie Salas for hosting poetry Friday this week.

My journey has begun...more on this later...

Thursday, April 7, 2016

Costumed Invader



After reading about the Wonder of the Day #1663 How Sweet is Honeysuckle? I thought about the nature of the plant and how it's really a predator in disguise as it's invasive and takes over gardens.  I decided to make the honeysuckle sweetness in disguise.

April showers falling, dropping on fertile ground
Helping paint nature's scene, turning from drab to bright
Spring flowers showing their blooms
Their premiere act of color and scent combined


Floating in on a breezy boat
Waiting for the first cruisers to board
Birds and bees with senses awakened
Called by nature's newness on the honeysuckle vine
But,
Gardeners made aware, taking special care
Removing the sweetly disguised invader...

Wednesday, April 6, 2016

First Emperor, Diamante

Wallowing in Wonder after reading about the First Emperor of China was great learning for me.  I thought about how Prince Zheng changed over time from first needing help to rule and eventually coined himself the First Emperor of China.  I learned so much about him.  I decide to use the Diamante Poem format.

Prince-Zheng
Learner, Thinker
Planning, Organizing, Uniting
Authoritarian, Persuader, Enforcer, Conqueror
Ruling, Building, Influencing
Absolute, Confident
Emperor


Tuesday, April 5, 2016

Fertilizer, Appetizer?



Fertilizer, Appetizer?

Farmers plan to plant their seeds
But long before they do
They add nutrition to the soil
Mixing and tilling through

The things plants need to grow
Mixed well in advance
Helping seeds get what they need
Giving them their best chance

There are some basic nutrients
Plants need to survive and thrive
Carbon, hydrogen, oxygen
Keeping plants alive

Nitrogen, phosphorus, potassium
Added to the mix
The fertilizing process,
The out-of-balance fix

Farmers use the combination
An organic and synthetic sow
Blending both so over time
Plants have a healthy place to grow

Farmers get help from animals
Use their manure as fertilizer
It seems so weird to think about
It's the future plants' appetizer!




Monday, April 4, 2016

Just. A. Kid. and a Sliced Thumb


at Two Writing Teachers for hosting
Tuesday's Slice of Life

Listening to the Cantina Band play away in the car by request, of course.  I was transported to a Star Wars moment a long time ago in a galaxy far, far away.  We slowly pulled up to the stop light.  I felt so tired I wasn't sure how I got there.  (I admit I didn't sleep well last night.)
I paused with the traffic...
took a deep breath... 
imagined hanging out with the band...
but Natalie broke the musical moment with a comment-

"Mom! I have a cut on my finger!" she called out from the back as if I was the audience.

"Oh, you do?  Which one?"

She boldly shared, "MY THUMB!"

I asked if it was bleeding and how big the cut was.

Boldness turned to calm, "W-e-ll, it's just a super small cut."

I wondered aloud, "Would you like a band-aid?  I can get you one when we get home.  Or dad has this stuff called 'new skin' that we could-"

"Mom!  I'm just a kid!  A small square band-aid will do!"

"Ok, Miss Natalie, thank you for letting me know,"  I smiled and began chucklin' to myself.  'Just. a. kid.'-she knows herself well, yep, 5 going on 20!  I'm still smiling as I write this slice.  She cracks me up.  I had to share our little moment.



Glitter and Glue

Wallowing in Wonder Day 3
 A special thank you to Amy Ludwig VanDerwater for hosting the Wallowing in Wonder Project.  I have warmed my writing brain with sparkles as I wondered about the Wonder of the Day from yesterday "What Makes Glitter Sparkle?".  I read through the wonder and jotted some quick notes in my notebook...I learned about who created glitter and what makes it sparkle.  I thought about how glitter can't do without the glue, they need to be partners.

So that lead me to write today's poem:

Glitter and Glue

Glitter and Glue,
Making things shine
Add shimmer and sparkle
They are partners in crime

Glitter can't work 
without Glue's sticky
Don't use too much
or your project turns icky!

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Storm Chasers Work Saving Lives

Wallowing in Wonder-Day 2.

In honor of National Poetry Month, I am "Wallowing in Wonder" with other teachers and poets, lead by Author Amy Ludwig VanDerwater.  We are looking at daily wonders from Wonderopolis for inspiration of daily poems.  Yesterday's wonder was all about storm chasing.  After listening to the wonder and reading through it, I jotted some notes in my notebook and then began crafting my poem.  I thought about important words and actions that relate to the work of storm chasers.  I determined the rhyme scheme for my poem and then began to draft my thoughts.



After I drafted, I thought about how it sounded.  I noticed it had lots of action words and those words made it sound exciting.  I re-read it again to see if I had the right words in the right place, and I did some changing around.  I'm sharing my final draft with you...what do you think?

Storm Chasers Work Saving Lives

Looking out the window,
Knowing what I see
A big flash of light
Shining bright in the night!

Seeing the lightning,
Mind filling with worries
A chill down my spine
Hair standing on end at 10 after 9!

Flashing of lightning
Means crashing was next!
Leading me to wonder,
how far was the thunder?

Thinking of scientists...
studying storms' habits
Teaming up and giving storms chase,
Learning together to determine storm's place!

Chasers study for warning
to tell the people early!
Cities sounding the alarm!
Prevent storms doing harm!

Saturday, April 2, 2016

Inspired by Green-ness


Ruth Ayers Writes-Celebrating This Week

With April 1 beginning the kick-off to National Poetry Month and just completing the Slice of Life Story Challenge, I feel inspired to continue writing.  I may not be posting every day but I am going for the daily writing.  I am celebrating inspiration today because there is much going around.

First, I read Carrie's slice about Spring poems she wrote with her class.  She shared a new book title, 
When Green Becomes Tomatoes by Julie Fogliano and illustrated by Julie Morstead.  She shared a form of two by two words to create nine-word poems.  I thought this would be a great way to help students create poetry about springtime happenings.

Next, I was inspired by Carol, inviting participation in poetrylicious offerings...which I joined in yesterday.  I jumped in on the #poetryfriday link up.  There is so much wonderful writing happening around us.  I read many poems yesterday, each creating imagery to be savored in the soul.

Then, I connected with Amy Ludwig VanDerwater and her idea of wallowing in the daily wonder from Wonderopolis.org. She's keeping the "daily wonder" with her all day and using it to inspire a poem she'll share the next day on her blog, The Poem Farm.  She invited others to join too...so I am!

Finally, yesterday's wonder was about whether the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence.

As a result of all these connections, here is my poem...inspired by yesterday's wonder...
My surroundings glow with green-ness.  I feel so blessed to be where I am.



Inspired Green-ness
By Amy Rudd

Grass greener?
Bird's-eye view...
No way!
Appreciating mine!
Grateful.

Focus instead
Eyes here
Greenly views
Near perfect 
Dear!


So grateful for all of the wonderful opportunities in my life.  Won't you celebrate green-ness with me?