Tuesday, March 28, 2017

Slice of Life:Gotcha Day

Gotcha Day is an important celebration in my family. We hold a feast for children brought to us by adoption. Because our children were born in China, we order Chinese food...and swap memories of meeting on the day we gotcha!

This year is the first that our eldest will be at college for Gotcha Day. We celebrated early. It was festive and fun and all the warm fuzzies that we embrace from our tradition.

When it came time for fortune cookies, the paper that fell out of mine, stopped me. 

You have to know, this child came into my arms in the throes of a tantrum. The two of us stormed with and against each other all through the growing up to age eighteen. Now, college life and a little space for understanding, things are better between us.

How did the person writing that fortune that ended up in my cookie on the day we celebrated this child know? 

I wish you extraordinary fortune cookie wisdom today.

Thursday, March 23, 2017

Poetry Friday 3/24/17

Hugs and High-fives to Catherine at:
Reading to the Core for hosting today's Poetry Friday Round-up.

Sometimes, at the close of a weekend, when I've read as many PF blog posts as I can get to, I think: What on earth will I share next week?  

I have to laugh at myself because....

A. Poetry Friday is voluntary...I enjoy PF no one is forcing me.

B. Poetry Friday can be as simple as thought, or idea

By Monday or Tuesday....I have a flicker of an idea and start thinking about how to share it. Usually, it's a piggy-back idea from another PF friend or something I see in social media.

Yesterday, I encountered this tweet:


I thought I'd give this exercise a try. I searched for poems that I would use with middle school students. 

Choosing two poems, for a poetry lover/writer, is like choosing outfits for a family portrait. Do I go with matchy-matchy? Or, complementary colors, or matching tops of varied colors? Maybe we should all wear white shirts, blue jeans and show bare feet. Decisions, decisions!

I chose these two beloved poems,

Poem 1: Introduction to Poetry by Billy Collins
Poem 2: Truth Serum by Naomi Shihab Nye 

I sat myself down and started reading and doodling and thinking. I had to read the poems out loud (which I don't often do ....even though you're suppose-ta'). I counted lines and stanzas and looked for sameness in the differences. I collected some of my doodles in a Venn diagram. I put it away for a day and pulled it out again. The thing about this activity is that you can find something each time you look. It's fun and I learned a thing or two....definitely more than if I had re-read each of these poems alone without the idea of comparing and contrasting them. 

I'll bet you can find more than I captured in an early diagram. What comparisons and contrasts do you see?

What two poems will you choose for comparison? I'd love to know.

Have a poetry filled week.

15 Words or Less

Laura Purdie Salas challenges us to draft a poem in fifteen words or less based on a  photo prompt.

This was tough. There's so much more to say!

Hear Ella Fitzgerald Sing, I Love Paris (#11) https://www.timeout.com/paris/en/music/best-paris-songs

Tuesday, March 21, 2017

Slice of Life 3/21/17

Image: Still Life with French Novels and Glass with a Rose - Vincent Van Gogh - The Athenaeum."Still Life with French Novels and Glass with a Rose - Vincent Van Gogh - The Athenaeum. The Athenaeum., 24 May 2014. Web. 20 Mar. 2017

I wish you a good book today.

Thursday, March 16, 2017

Poetry Friday March Madness

I wish I was more of a sports fan. During an event, I can be found reading or awkwardly chatting to someone absently "uh-huh-ing" while trying to watch the plays. I really DO enjoy the charge others get from cheering for their teams. March brings us Pi Day, Einstein's Birthday, Women's History Month and Basketball! 

Photo: Getty Images/Andy Lyons. Read the rest here: https://www.loc.gov/poetry/180/109.html?loclr=lsp1_rg0001

This week, I am enjoying sharing some Basketball poetry with friends. If they can cheer at TV screens.....I can find rhythm in bouncing words. That's my kind of ball. 

Nesbitt, Kenn. "Search Results Basketball - Kenn Nesbitt's Poetry4kids.com." Poetry4kids. N.p., n.d. Web. 14 Mar. 2017. .

Bounce on over to Robyn Hood Black's blog, Life on the Deckle Edge for this week's Poetry Friday Round-Up.

Alexander, Kwame. HMH Books for Young Readers, 2014. Print.

READ THE REST HERE: http://www.bpj.org/poems/alexie_whitman.html

A nice list of Basketball Poetry can be found at The Poetry Foundation

Charles R. Smith has several basketball poetry books.  Click on the image below to hear audio of some poems.

http://charlesrsmithjr.com/media/audio/Hoop Kings Candlewick 2004 Hoop Queens Candlewick 2007

15 Words or Less

Laura Purdie Salas challenges poets to draft a poem and share in 15 words or less. 

Wednesday, March 15, 2017


Well, thank you, Storm Stella! 

I hunkered down and read Wheels of Change by Darlene Jacobson. What a beautiful middle-grade historical fiction spun out of family lore. 

Perfect for those 1900-1919 years when there were so many, many new inventions and contraptions up against age-old conventions. I hope this author keeps writing. 

Jacobson, Darlene Beck, and Marissa Moss. Darlene Beck Jacobson Presents Wheels of Change. Berkeley, CA: Creston , LLC, 2014. Print.

One of my favorite lines from the book, "There's no wrong time to help a friend". (62)