Tag Archives: stories

The Little Red Hen

Another story from the 1920’s grade 2 Primer, written in cursive, so for that alone a true relic from the past.  I know that we had access when we were kids to these readers saved from my mothers childhood and although I don’t know who was responsible for all the underlining, I will plead guilty to the colouring.  That red hen was not red enough for me.

My grandmother was an avid reader, but I never saw her read a book without a pencil or a pen in her hand, underlining what seemed to me to be completely random words and phrases.  She would have loved hi-lighters.  Mom gave me one of grandmas “doctored” books as a keepsake.  It’s full of squiggly pencil underlining from beginning to end.  Maybe she passed this habit on to one of her kids when they were learning to read.

Anyway, here’s the story, underlining, bad colouring and all.  Sorry some of it is hard to see, but the pages have been around for almost a hundred years.  We should all look as good when we’re this ancient.

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Rain Stories

Rain was a popular subject for primary school children learning to read in the early 1900’s.  I am basing this assumption on these stories from the Ontario Readers Primer, authorized by THE MINISTER OF EDUCATION (that part was important enough in the book to print in all caps bold) published in 1920.

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How lucky am I to possess books that are almost a hundred years old? Even if the stories are blatantly sexist.  Wimpy little girl afraid of the rain vs. bold adventurous little boy having fun.

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In this case the smart males all seek shelter and the silly female goose doesn’t. Girls just can’t win.
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Isn’t that delightful? The pages are well-read, faded and stained, the cover is worn and falling apart and the binding disintegrating and barely holding everything together. It’s one of the things my mother felt was worth saving, and it is one of my treasures.

My Three Word New Years Resolution

tell your story

Trifextra Week Ninety Nine:

Michael Hess inspired us with his three word New Year’s resolution – just be nice.  We’re asking
for your own resolutions in just three words.

I made a long list for inspiration.  Carry a pen, stop and look, have some fun, ride the waves, laugh like hell, find what matters, write it down, tell your story.  I aspire to do all these things, plus use more glitter and shoot the moon.  Why?  Because ultimately I want to do this:

Leave Something Behind

It finally came down to those three words when I realized it’s why we do it all and why we write – so that some small part of us will live on after we’re gone.  If you can’t make your words earth shatteringly memorable , don’t worry.  Glitter is almost impossible to get rid of and will keep people thinking about you for a very long time.

Happy New Year to everyone at Trifecta and everyone who participates in these delightful challenges.  Keep making memories.

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The Closest of Confidants

Two little girls in bed, playing with Japanese...

We were kids pretending, playing roles

Being the characters, wearing the clothes

Making up stories, saying the lines

There were no limits and no confines

But no matter who we decided to be

You were you and I was me.

Together now it seems as though

Our grown up selves are just for show.

The walls come down, the pretense dies

We see through each others thin disguise

No matter how old or long apart

You know my honne, I know your heart.

We are at peace and safe and free

When you are you and I am me.

Prompts for the Promptless:  Honne is a Japanese noun referring to the behavior and opinions someone truly believes in– often displayed with one’s closest confidants.

Sisters Are Forever Until One Pisses the Other One Off by Writing a Book

Daily Prompt:  Coming to a bookshelf near you:

Write a summary of the book you’ve always wanted to write for the back cover of its dust jacket.

Before the Lights Go Out by Lara Beckman (not her real name) (also this illustration is not the actual dust jacket and the two people on it are not even sisters)

English: The author Madeline Brandeis (1897–19...
English: The author Madeline Brandeis (1897–1937) and her daughter Marie on the dust jacket of her book “The Little Swiss Wood Carver”, published in 1929 (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Before the Lights Go Out  is a brilliant collection of timeless stories, illuminating moments in the ordinary lives of two sisters who experience the same growing pains in childhood, but whose adult lives unfold in astoundingly different directions.  There are twists of fate, chance encounters and life altering moments as their two pathways seem to diverge more often than they cross.

Their strongly based family connection and shared history is not something either of them can escape and although they both get lost or go temporarily missing in action over the years their lives continue to sporadically intertwine in delightful ways.  There are beginnings and endings, arrivals and departures; accidents, misfortunes and tragedies, always interspersed with large doses of good luck, good times and miracles.

The sisters chronicles are profoundly memorable, funny, authentic, sometimes irreverent.  Prepare to be amused, shocked and amazed at how strange and extraordinary two ordinary lives can be.

Author’s Note:  Although these stories may strike random family members as being autobiographical in nature, I assure you they are pure fiction and more or less completely made up, based so losely on fact as to be irrelevant in the grand scheme of things.  I swear.  Really, I’m almost totally serious about the fictional part.  So stop worrying about it.  Your secrets are safe with me.

Pictures From Moms Kitchen (Part Two)

He followed me into the house – can I keep him?
“Yikes – I think there’s a ghost behind us!” “Really? HAHA Nothing scares me – everything makes me laugh. Everything. Life is hilarious.”
Me and my happy happy boy.
All ready to go to Aunt Ann’s wedding.
Grandpa McArthur tells the best stories and sings the silliest songs.

Yes, in this kitchen I slathered jam on my toast.  It was homemade.  It was delicious.  There were some things I was powerless to resist.  However, the instant coffee was not one of them.  I got a coffee maker for my mother, and she dutifully hauled it out for me every time we came to visit.

Blog Tag – Wanna Play?

Thank you C.B. Wentworth  for inviting me to play BLOG TAG.

At least I think I mean thank you and not curse you.  I will let you know if I ever get to the end of this little assignment.   As a child I was not that good at being IT.  As an adult who has learned that no one wants to listen to me snivel about stuff, I have decided to play by the rules and give it my best shot.  And I was kidding about the cursing.  I’m flattered.  Really, I am.

I hope everyone who reads this will check out C.B.’s blog by clicking on the above link – it’s a delight to read and you’ll be glad you did.  I’ve been following her poetry, stories, artwork and photography – there are awesome things there for everyone.

The rules for playing blog tag are….

  • You must post the rules
  • Answer the questions the tagger set for you in their post
  • Create eleven new questions to ask the people you’ve tagged (or use the existing ones)
  • Tag (eleven) people with a link to your post
  • Let them know they’ve been tagged

Here are the questions I’ve been given, and my answers to them.  Everything you never wanted to know about me and more great links coming up:

1) What is something you’ve always wanted to learn how to do?  Teleport.  Right now it’s science fiction, but if instantaneous travel ever becomes reality I am SO going to be a frequent flyer.

2) What is your favorite quote?  “I like living. I have sometimes been wildly, despairingly, acutely miserable, racked with sorrow, but through it all I still know quite certainly that just to be alive is a grand thing.” (Agatha Christie)

3) What is the scariest thing you’ve ever done?  I gave birth to babies. And then, even scarier, I had to be their mother.

4) If there were no rules, what would you do? No doubt I would make some up.

5) Stick shift (manual) or automatic transmission?  Automatic is certainly easier, but manual can be a lot more fun and definitely makes you pay closer attention to what you’re doing.

6) Mac or PC?  I’ve only ever had a PC but I’ve heard so many good things about Macs, when this lap top dies I think I’ll make the big switch.

7) You are a published author at your first book signing.  What message do you write with your autograph?  Happy reading?  I have no idea, and feel confident that this scenario will never come up.  But for sure I’d use a really great pen, like a fine point sharpie.  In purple, maybe.  Doodle some hearts and stars.  Personalize it with your name, which I will have to ask you how to spell.  Add a few hugs and kisses.  The line up will be slow-moving.  Better bring a coffee with you.

8) What charity is closest to your heart?  All the health related ones I guess.  Heart and stroke, cancer, diabetes.  And children’s hospitals.  Research and prevention.  We wouldn’t have to be searching so hard for cures if we could prevent these things from happening in the first place.

9) Name something that you think is underrated.  Yoga pants.  If everyone wore them, this world would be a much more relaxed and happy place.

10) If you could give yourself a new name, what would it be?  Ultimate Supreme Queen of the Universe has a nice ring to it.

11) What book or event changed your life?  I don’t know if reading “The Power of Now” by Eckhart Tolle changed my life, but it did change the way I look at it, and the way I experience things.  Instead of constantly reliving the past or rehearsing imagined future situations in my mind I am learning to let the involuntary thinking subside, giving way to stillness, peace and the joy of Being.  There is something to be said for having an empty head.  Put on your yoga pants and try it.

Here’s the 11 questions for those I have tagged:

1.  When is the last time you did something for the first time?

2.  What would your life be incomplete without?

3. What is your greatest fear?

4.  What makes you smile or laugh out loud?

5.  What’s your worst habit, and what are you doing to change it?

6.  Who (or what) is your best friend?

7.  What makes you sad (or mad) enough to cry (or punch somebody)?

8.  If you owned a boat, what would you name it?

9.  What’s your proudest accomplishment?

10.  What did you want to be when you grew up and how did that work our for you?

11.  If you were making a movie about your life, what actors would you chose to play yourself and your significant other(s)?

(Question number 12 is Do you hate me for tagging you?  but you can skip that one if you think I won’t like the answer.)

I am tagging:

Incidentally

the dancing professor

sillyliss

slapppshot…tales of a single dad

As I See It

Coffee Powered Mom

Coffee and Spellcheck

brainsnorts inc >.<

HURTLED TO 60 AND NOW BEYOND

Andy’s words and pictures

The Meat and Potatoes of Life

There are many more tag worthy people I follow but the rules state that I must stop at the magic number of eleven.  If I’ve missed you, please feel free to answer my fascinating questions anyway. One way or the other, I’d love to hear what you have to say.  There was a lot of messing around to be done getting all the links right, but this was fun anyway.  And if it directs some new fans to these and other great blogs, my work is done.

What I’m Looking Forward to in 2011

If we look at great expectations on a number line we’ll see that all of mine hover around the zero mark. That’s really the only thing that makes them great because it’s so easy for them to drift either way. No plummeting or soaring required. That way if something fails to happen or turns out all wrong, it’s okay. Kick it off into the minus zone and carry on. And if something beautiful and joyous and wonderful comes along I can gratefully embrace it and leap up to the plus side for however long it lasts.

Anticipation can be a crippling waste of the present moment if it grows big enough. I try to keep it in perspective so that it won’t consume me.

So, in other, faster, less round about words, there is really nothing major on my personal agenda for this year. Might take a trip to Ireland. Maybe go on a river cruise in Europe. Get hit by a bus. Have a heart attack and die. There are a lot of possible scenarios out there.

Right now I’m going to start a second blog site and begin writing a story of some sort or other. The rest of you here have all inspired me. Everyone has something interesting to say, and I think if I type away for long enough perhaps my own unique something will pop up when I least expect it. Stranger things have happened I’m sure.

Seems to me to be as good a way as any to start off a brand new year. One day at a time, one word after another, moment by moment by moment.

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