Friday, April 30, 2010

Journal: Conference

I've attended lots of conferences: leadership, educational, teaching, writing, insurance, etc. Although very different, they follow similar schedules:

A breakfast of some kind(sit down or buffet or donuts in the back of the room) is followed by a welcoming session. Then, breakout sessions fulfill the advertised purpose of the conference. (Most often, people don't attend to get an education, though, they attend to socialize. If a person rarely attends conferences, they go for the education.) Sometimes there is a luncheon, while other times they recommend you take a speaker to lunch. A trade show, or something else where people are encouraged to buy things and others pitch their wares from behind designated tables, is usually a good place to go to get free stuff. A banquet or organized meal is arranged at some point during the day. Snacks are available, which may or may not include alcoholic beverages. Social opportunities abound that are not listed on the conference schedule.

The difference in conferences is the general personality of attendees and the amount of money available. Education conferences are very different from insurance conferences. Political leadership conferences are very different from writing conferences. They have their similarities, but the main difference is those in attendance.

Journal: Consider a character--one of your own or someone else's. Take him or her to a conference and see what happens. Maybe you'll meet another story there.

Saturday, April 24, 2010

Journal: the town character

If you've ever lived in a small town, you know its characters. Town characters are those people few know, but everyone knows who they are. Something makes them distinct.

From my childhood, I recall Charlie and Josie, who went to all the high school athletic events--even though away games required driving a car with no doors. They were a couple of our town characters.

I'm still learning the characters in my new town. I have a couple of nominees, though.Definitely in the running is the guy riding the unicycle in the pouring rain, wearing a backpack with blinking lights.

Journal: Write a scene from a town character's point of view. Be sure to hint at, if not explain, the behaviors that make him or her unique.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Journal: nursery rhyme re-do

Peter, Peter Pumpkin Eater
had a wife and couldn't keep her.
He put her in a pumpkin shell
and there he kept her very well.

Does this strike anyone else as creepy? It's in one of my son's nursery rhyme books. I've heard it my whole life, but the more I read it, the more my mind creates horrible stories to fill in the blanks left by the story.

I mean, why couldn't he keep his wife?
Was she running away and so he put her in a vegetable prison?
Was he angry that she was in love with someone else and so he made her into a pumpkin pie?
The most innocent excuse for this story is that Peter didn't have a lot of money and had trouble taking care of her, so he made her a home out of pumpkin shells, but still....

Journal: Consider a nursery rhyme and write the rest of the story.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Easter Egg Hunt

I've not been too "hippity-hoppity" in getting this post published. We had so much fun at Easter that I had to share it. After the day was over, I said to G, "I never thought we'd have a day like this." It was perfect. Max loved it so much he didn't even nap.
On Easter Sunday, my mom (and dad) hosted a family Easter egg hung for her great-nieces and nephews, grandson, and even a great-great nephew. Here she is before the strawberry pie, strawberry shortcake, and Lisa's sugar cookies (decorated as Easter eggs )hit the table.

Max met his cousin C for the first time here. C introduced him to Hot Wheels, so Max thought he was super-cool.
Here are the youngest kiddos enjoying a ride in my parents' gardening wagon. The older cousins entertained them thoroughly, especially with this wagon. (So much so that, just today, Max crawled up in the wagon and looked around, surprised no one magically appeared to pull him at high speeds down a hill.) This picture cracks me up because Max's hair sticks straight up and he has some sort of bad boy look on his face. Note the car in his hand: Once his cousin let him play with it, he didn't let it go all afternoon.

Eager faces as Shannon serves up the Easter bunny cake...
Isn't this what family is about? Who wouldn't love them?

Saturday, April 10, 2010

Journal: poem

April is National Poetry Month.

And National Pecan Month, Soy Food Month, and Emotional Overeating Awareness Month,

International Guitar Month, Jazz Appreciation Month, National Kite Month,

Couples Appreciation Month,

Car Care Month, Straw Hat month,

National DNA & Genomics and Stem Cell Education and Awareness Month,

Child Abuse Prevention Month and Alcohol Awareness Month.

And if those aren't enough, there's also Stress Awareness Month.

There's many more things we're supposed to be appreciating and learning about this month, but I think we'll focus on the poetry today.

Journal: Write a poem inspired by April.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Fickle friendship of a boy and his duck

At one month:

Last night:

I told my son that if he hit me again, he was getting out of the bath.

He pointed at the duck and, I swear, said, "He did it."

Then he hit the duck.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Journal: plot

Plot is an important part of a story. It's the action. Without it, no story exists.

Since yesterday was April 1, let's do a journal in honor of the day of fun.

Journal:Write a scene about a prank.