words

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NaNoWriMo Begins

Posted by on 01 Nov 2008 | Tagged as: NaNoWriMo, Uncategorized, words, writing

I didn’t stay up until Midnight, I sat down at 10 pm after spending the day getting ready for and visiting with a classmate of mine. We held our annual All Hallow’s feast and enjoyed several hours just hanging out and enjoying talking.

So I just finished my first set of words… 481. Not bad for about 30 minutes’ work. Now I am going to do a little bit of research, and then to bed. I am going to try to put up a widget on the “cool things” page so you can track my progress.

Time change for most people in the United States tonight. It will feel like getting an extra hour’s sleep without sleeping in.

November’s “Spare Time” Project (yeah, right)

Posted by on 18 Oct 2008 | Tagged as: Interesting Websites, NaNoWriMo, Uncategorized, wordplay, words, writing

I will participate in National Novel Writing Month again this year, but I doubt I will get the 50,000 word limit this time.

That’s okay, I haven’t been writing much the last few months because of school, and it would be a good challenge to work toward. I suppose I will have most of the last week of November without classes. Let’s see… 50,000 words over 7 days in the last week + four weekends (8 days) = about 3400 words per writing day! A piece of cake, right?

Anyway, here is the pretty large icon that links to NaNoWriMo for this year!

NaNoWriMo Participant Badge

NaNoWriMo Participant Badge

My Own Poem

Posted by on 30 Apr 2008 | Tagged as: art, citizenship, copyrights, fun, poetry, Uncategorized, wordplay, words, writing

Well, Robin has been writing poems all month. I thought it would be a good idea to write one also, since I didn’t manage to participate in NaPoWriMo (this time).

Independent, I

black
/
white

red
/
blue

conservative
/
liberal

happy
/
sad

why choose?

be bold, bright, splendid
/
quiet, calm, reserved

grey, purple, moderate, centered, boldly quiet, splendidly calm, brightly reserved…

and all at once

be yourself.

this is by ks, copyright ks, permission to quote and alter — but please cite ks as your source.

Poet of Note

Posted by on 29 Apr 2008 | Tagged as: art, books, education, good things, poetry, Uncategorized, wordplay, words, writing

This is from “Always a Reckoning” by Jimmy Carter. I really treasure this book. Some of the poems make me uncomfortable, some make me sad or angry. This one in particular makes me feel peculiar. Wistful?

Priorities of Some Mexican Children

A sign was leaning toward adobe shacks
back from the road, across a dry plateau.
LLANOS it read, the same as our Plains.
When we stopped to photograph the view
three blackhaired children hurried down a path
shouting something, eager to be heard.
“Get out your pocketbooks,” I said,
“I can guess the word.”
When they got closer, we could tell it was not dinero but
lápiz and papel.

What would it take for our own children to value education so highly?

dinero = money; lápiz = pencil; papel = paper

Poetry at the end of April

Posted by on 28 Apr 2008 | Tagged as: art, education, good things, poetry, Uncategorized, wordplay, words, writing

Today it is Emily Dickinson…

Wild Nights!

Wild nights! Wild nights!
Were I with thee,
Wild nights should be
Our luxury!

Futile the winds
To a heart in port,
Done with the compass,
Done with the chart.

Rowing in Eden!
Ah! the sea!
Might I but moor
To-night in thee!

Thanks to babbler “kje” who posted this in her profile yesterday.

Reader Appreciation

Posted by on 16 Apr 2008 | Tagged as: art, caring, friends, fun, good things, hope, Making a Difference, poetry, Uncategorized, words, writing

Who reads my writing? A few people, for sure. My mother (hello Mother!), some friends from Babble (hey Babblers!), and an occasional passerby who wanders here from another site (hi there!).

Whoever you are, or whatever your reason for coming here, I want you to know that I appreciate the time you spend! I know how many things there are that probably need attention (dishes, critters, gardens, work, research all come to mind) — we all have limited time and unlimited demands made on us.

Why do you read other people’s blogs? I know why I do. I make a connection with people this way. I write, they read (and sometimes respond). I read someone else’s work (and sometimes comment) and find that I am not so alone in my struggles as a parent, a writer, a person. I follow a link from a friend’s blog (like Robin’s) to another blog and discover that person also has their own hopes, dreams, struggles, achievements.

I think blogging may someday help lead us into a more peaceful world as we learn about each other from the comfort and safety of our own computers. Or perhaps reading people’s blogs lets us experience the best of the things they enjoy — art, music, poetry — expanding our horizons as we dip into someone else’s interests. And, maybe we get inspired to try something new of our own. Something to make the world a little prettier, safer, nicer or more comfortable. At least, I hope so.

And that’s why I am glad you stop by and read the ramblings of my posts.

So I will finish up (in honor of poetry month) with a little ditty I wrote just for today:

I set out the good china today,
and made a fresh pot of tea
with lemon and sugar in pretty silver bowls
waiting for you

I dusted the house
and swept off the rug by the door
thinking of things to talk about
waiting for you

I sat on the porch
with a book in my hand
and hummed a song while I read
waiting for you

I looked up
and there you were
all smiles and flowers
to visit a while.

one lump, or two?

Something Blue

Posted by on 15 Feb 2008 | Tagged as: blogposts, fun, Gardens and Life, good things, hope, musings, Uncategorized, words

There are many things that are blue (I am blue, thinking how late I am writing this, for example).

Blue eyes were in the news that last couple of weeks — if you have blue eyes you are definitely a cousin of every other person with blue eyes! Though possibly a thousand generations removed…

Blue skies were overhead for me a couple times this past week. After weeks of mostly gray, cold, and often rainy or snowy weather, they sure looked pretty! Looking forward to tomorrow, when more blue skies are again predicted!

The robe I am making for my son’s birthday in a week is blue — a pretty dark blue (just shy of navy, not quite as bright as sapphire) and a lovely light aqua. Tropical fishes swim across. It will be lovely and warm for him — once it’s done.

My Tom favors blue jeans for daily attire, dark indigo, or faded almost to white, they are durable, comfortable and go with everything! Today, I wore my blue-jean skirt!

And, of course, the stidkid’s bird is “Bleu!” A lovely little parakeet, he continues to bring us a good deal of joy.

Blue can mean many things — it is so common in our language. To feel blue is be sad, melancholy. To be a blue-blood is to have high standing in society as an accident of one’s birth. To be true-blue is to be loyal, trustworthy, honest.

And yet, blue can be elusive. The blue sky cannot be touched, a truly blue rose does not exist. Like any quality that can be named (love, hope, joy), blue is known by all, but experienced uniquely by each. When you think of blue, what is in your mind’s eye?

sky-blue
azure
teal
aqua
navy
sapphire
turquoise
indigo

or some other color?

How blue are you?

Helping in High School

Posted by on 02 Nov 2007 | Tagged as: books, books and authors, children, education, fun, hope, parenting, reading, school, Uncategorized, words

I never thought I would do it, but I did.

I am helping in one of the kids’ English classes at the local high school.  They have book discussion groups, and I am working with one (my kid and two others chose to read the same book).  Today was the first day I got to sit down with the kids, and I think it went pretty well, considering none of us really knew what we were doing!

I was nervous, but apparently this book is too “highbrow” for the rowdier kids, so I got lucky.  The three boys in this group and I had a great time, and I am looking forward to next week.  There is a lot of good material for discussion — if time were unlimited, two hours’ discussion at a stretch would not be impossible.  I don’t know how many parents bother to volunteer in schools at this age…  but I think it is good that I am there.  If nothing else, these are three children the teacher doesn’t have to monitor for an hour, so he can focus on other students who need more help.  Maybe when this book is done I will keep coming back and helping in other ways.  I would like to.

I would like to recommend this book, but there is a caveat.  There is quite a bit of un-necessary vulgar language and prurient topics…  though the book deals with a teen-age boy’s “coming of age” story, I don’t think some of the passages had to be quite as graphic as they were.  Still, if you can overlook this flaw (which could be rectified with judicious editing and small re-writes), the rest of the book reads well, represents the area I live in beautifully (many passages are quite poetic and inspiring), and isn’t “dumbed down” in any way.  By Jim Lynch, The Highest Tide has been a national bestseller in the United States, and may be available locally in a library near you!

First Chapter Complete!

Posted by on 01 Nov 2007 | Tagged as: fun, good things, NaNoWriMo, Uncategorized, words, writing

I signed up officially for NaNoWriMo this morning at 11 — and here it is 1:15 and I have written MORE than 1500 words! Which is good, because I realized that I need to write an average of about 1700 words (not the 1500 I had anticipated) to meet the 50,000 word goal.

Gee, that’s a lot of zeros!

Anyway, my User Page at NaNoWriMo is up, though I still have to figure out how to change things on it and add the words I have written…

Their site has been really slow today though, so if you don’t get there, you might want to wait until the internet is less crowded…

Free Rice

Posted by on 30 Oct 2007 | Tagged as: education, fun, Giving, good things, hope, Making a Difference, poverty, Uncategorized, Word Games, wordplay, words

This is a cool website.

Improve your English vocabulary — and do something good for people who have need.

Free Rice.

It works a little like the old word association tests in school. They give you one word, then you choose the closest equivalent from four others. If you get it right three times in a row, they bump you up a level; if you get a word wrong you go down a level until you are hovering pretty close to the sort of language you use and understand easily.

Note to non-native speakers: as you get higher up in the levels, you will run into more words that are not in common use except by people who study specific subjects (history, science, medicine are the ones I have noted so far).

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