March Slice of Life – #31

 

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Today is the last day of the March Slice of Life, the daily writing challenge hosted at “Two Writing Teachers.”

After writing every day for 31 days, it is going to be hard to see the end of this challenge. Yes, there is the weekly slice challenge on Tuesdays, but this was special.

When I started, I hoped I would write a slice every day. I had done it last year and so I was pleased that I had completed the challenge this year.

But, it is not just been about the writing. It has been about :

-the searching for a topic each day

-the looking at the world around me in new ways

-reading of other slices each day

-commenting on other’s slices each day

 

It is truly a community which offers so much support. We are not alone. When we are vulnerable, we may fear sharing, but others have experienced the same things and give us caring and support.

I will certainly miss the daily challenge. I have learned a lot from it though. I have learned:

*to look closer at the evens of my day and record these in my journey so I won’t forget

*inspiration comes often from other slicers

*that I must make time for writing, reading and commenting every day

*even small events are important to remember and write about

 

Thank you everyone for your inspiration and your support. It has been a lovely journey.

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March Slice of Life – #30

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Today is Day 30 of the March Slice of Life daily writing challenge, hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”.

Hard to believe we are almost at the end of this writing journey. I will miss the daily writing – hopefully I will continue. My goal is to continue to write daily.

In a conversation with my daughter Friday night, we got onto the topic of looking for partners.

She had been through a bad relationship and had just recently found someone special. She then told me about the list she had drawn up of what she would want in a partner. She then it away. Just recently, she looked at it and was surprised at how accurate the list was to the traits of her new boyfriend.

I had gone through much of the same process fifteen years ago. After I separated from my now ex, I drew up a long list of what I sought in a new partner, certain that no one could match it. But I did leave it will God.

When I met my now husband online, both of us were positive about never marrying. We then phoned each other, met and then dated. Two years later we were married, both of us aged 50.

Shortly after that, I found that list and I was amazed to see all but one of the items on the list matched my husband. The only thing different – he was not taller than me. Instead, we see eye to eye – we are the same height.

March Slice of Life – #29

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Today is day 29 for the march Slice of Life daily writing challenge, hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”.

Photos and Memories

When I went to facebook yesterday, I saw a photo my nephew had posted and I recognized everyone.

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He wasn’t too sure, so I told him this this was a photo of his dad (my older brother), his grandfather, me (topless!), grandmother and aunt.  My brother was able to identify the place – Lake Mattabin, Quebec, a place I didn’t remember.

As I looked closely at the photo, I knew I was 4 or 5 but I did not remember being on the boat. I did vaguely remember climbing stone steps.

Later I pulled out the first album I ever made, as a ten year old. The first photo was of a young girl. I knew I had played with her, the house I lived in but I could not remember her name. I hadn’t even put it in the album.

As I leafed through the album, few memories were vivid. I could remember snippets of events and people, but if names were not listed I could not remember them.

It seems like memories are slipping away. As I look back, some memories can be remembered from a photo and some memories play like a video in my mind, with much detail.

I have a shoebox of old photos of my Mom’s, that I received after she died. When I looked through them, too many had no names or dates and it was only a guessing game who the people were. Now, there is no one left to tell me who these people are.

I am saddened by the loss of these memories, of not knowing who these people were. I have so many albums and photos, filled with moments captured in time. A smile, young children, people I’ve cared about – I don’t want to ever lose these memories.

 

March Slice of Life – #28

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Today is Day 28 of the march Slice of Life  daily writing challenge, hosted at “Two Writing Challenge.”

Twice I came to start my post and nothing came. So I checked emails and turned to the new post at  “Chatting at the Sky” and started to read what she learned in March. The second item caught my item. She had discovered playing Monopoly with her family. It was the second mention of Monopoly this morning. A new game is to be introduced by Hasboro with the inclusion of favourite house rules people have shared. You can read more about how you can vote  here.

It got me thinking about the games we played as a family, both when I was young and then with my children. For myself, I cannot play monopoly any longer. My brothers were way too competitive and we played for hours and hours, even saving a and continuing a game for days!

Here are a few of my favourite games:

1. Card games have always been fun. One of our favourites when I was a teen was “Up and Down the River“. (It has other names but can’t repeat them here!) We played 4 – 10 people and it was a lot of fun.

I also enjoyed hearts and rummy. We are just learning canasta now.

2. Racko.  I played this when I was a kid and then played with my children. It was a great way to encourage the order of numbers.

3. Wide World. I had this game when I was young and my own children loved it. It was a great way to learn where the countries of the world were.

4. Crazy 8 Countdown. This was one I played so often with my youngest and he was the king.

5. Cribbage I still love this game although I seldom play it now. My father taught me and to practice I would play myself (often losing to my partner!) My kids never enjoyed it much and neither does my husband. O play once in a while now when I can find another zealot.

6. Euchre I played this at university and still paly it, sometimes at church euchre nights. So enjoyable.

7. Scattegories. This has become THE game to play with my own kids when they visit. There is so much laughter and challenging of triple play choices.

8. Mexican Train. This domino game is the newest one we have learned and one we play most often now, with friends and with my husband’s children.

9. Solitaire. I have to mention these games as O play these online now, especially while waiting on the phone. I played different ones with cards and now play spider solitaire or mah-jong.

10. Word games. I love scrabble, but seldom find people to play with me. I also enjoy Boggle and online, Bookworm and Word Whomp.

Games have always been a part of our family. So much laughter and sharing and talking takes place, even some arguing at times. I cannot imagine not having those games to play. What an enjoyable time for bonding.

What’s your favourite?

 

 

 

March Slice of Life – # 27 & 30 Words Thursday

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Today is Day 27 of the March Slice of Life writing challenge, hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”. We are soon to the end of this challenge. It has been difficult at times to think of a topic, but reading the posts each day has given lots of inspiration. What a fascinating community of writers!

Today is also “30 Words Thursday“.

I couldn’t resist the poem I crated this morning. I am nearing the end of patience for this winter weather. More snow is expected tonight. Ugh! But, I actually saw my first robin yesterday!

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I created an acrostic for spring!

SPRINGTIME

S pring in name only

P lease appear!

R ain, not snow

I ce be gone!

N ature calls out

G reen grass to grow

T ime for growth

 I t`s due.

M ake it NOW!

E veryone seeks Spring.

March Slice of Life – #26

 

 

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Yesterday, Linda Baie shared what the origin of her weaving was. I commented and it brought back memories .

I said:

“I remember one year I did small cardboard looms for our pioneer unit and one group of 5 boys took off with it. At the end of the year they presented me with a fairly large woven piece, made from many squares that a mom had sewn together. All their initials were in the piece. I still have it and treasure it.”

It made me think about those special memories we treasure from our teaching days. (And it is not what curriculum I taught or even how well students did!)

Here are a few highlights I remember:

*Reading aloud and knowing everyone was so involved in the story, begging for just one more chapter. I felt that I had them in the palm of my hand. “The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane”, “Stone Fox”, “Because of Winn Dixie” were just a few of their favourite books.

*Writing and illustrating books with students for different competitions

*Holding a “White Elephant Sale” – the children planned, set up and ran the sale to raise money for a local shelter.

*Building robots and writing and performing stories about them.

*Student teachers

*Christmas concerts.

*Poetry writing.

*Creating masks for our native unit

*creating Eric Carle papers and then collage animals with the papers.

*Creating dances based on “Stomp”

I could go one – so many of the memories revolve around art, reading, music and drama. Even though I had to “prepare the kids” for the Gr. 3 assessment, to me, what was important, was to ensure kids had exposure to all of the arts. There is so much to be learned from creating – whether it is a poem, a song, art or dance. Kids ned to be able to express themselves and find where their strengths lie. We all need the arts in our lives somehow.

 

 

March Slice of Life – #25

 

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Today is Day 25 of the March Slice of Life, a  daily writing challenge, hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”. hard to believe there are only 5 more slices for March!

Yesterday, I visited Jen Baum’s blog and was reminded of a writing exercise I always did with my classes at the beginning of the year. Yet, I have never done for myself. She called it a “Taxonomy of my Favorite Things“. usually when we did it in the classroom, it was a list of possible topics to be used for writing. I love Jen’s idea of recording all of your favourite things.

Here’s mine:

A: ART,  Australia, aboriginal art, afghans, apples, angels

B: Bill, Bible, books, bunnies, ballet, blogs, bananas, butterflies

C: crochet,children, Christmas, computer, collage, chocolate, card playing, cribbage

D: dogs, dancing, dragonflies

E: England, eggs, English muffins

F: family, friends, flowers, fall

G: gelli printing, games

H: hugs, hearts, horses,  humour, herons, humming birds 

I: ice cream

J: Jer, Jeff, jam & toast

K: kisses, kittens

L: love, laughter, learning, letters

M: Matt, music, movies, mountains

N: nature, news

O: oceans, oranges, the Olympics

P: prayer, photography, pizza, pinterest, peanut butter  popcorn, painting 

Q: quilts, quiet , questions

R: reading, roses, red, rest, relaxation,

S: stamp carving, spring, sunrises & sunsets, swimming, scrabble, Scattegories, snow, shadows, swans 

T: teaching, twitter, tea, theatre 

U: unicorns

V: violets, the Voice, volleyball

W:  writing, water, watercolour

X: XOXOXOX

Y: yarn

Z: zoos

There are probably more I could add, but this is a good representation of things I like and things I like to do.

 

 

 

 

 

March Slice of Life – #24

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Today is Day 24 of the March Slice of Life, the daily writing challenge hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”.

Sunday,  my husband and I went out to buy a new CO detector. We already had one at home, but after reading an article on CO detectors a couple of days ago, I realized I had been getting it wrong for many years. I thought having a detector by the furnace was the best way to prevent CO poisoning.

The article was in response to family’s tragic loss this past week of three members of the family,  to carbon monoxide poisoning. This brought back my own memories of going through my own father’s death from carbon monoxide poisoning 42 years ago.

My dad had always warned us about rolling down a window in a car if it was running. I always do this. He warned us against running a car in a garage with the garage door closed. Yet, he did not follow his own advice. Whether it was the drink he had had that night, or the cold, he pulled the car into the garage, and let it run. Maybe he was listening to the radio and fell asleep. His death was a shock to all of us. My youngest brother was 10, I was 20. My mother was left to raise five children on her own.

When I read the article, I discovered 2 things:

*a CO detector is needed on every floor, especially right outside of bedrooms

* the detector should not be near the furnace

So we corrected the errors yesterday and I urge you as well, to be sure you have CO detectors. They are well worth the money.

March Slice of Life – #23

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Today is Day 23 of the march Slice of Life, the daily writing challenge hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”

While visiting several bloggers over the past few days, I have read some amazing book spine poetry. Maybe because it is almost 2 in the morning, but I thought I would try. I ended up with 2 poems – quite different.

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March Slice of Life – #22

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Today is Day 22 of the March Slice of Life writing challenge hosted at “Two Writing Teachers”.

As I was posting at my art blog, I thought that a look at challenges I take part in or have taken part in would make an interesting list. It might even provide someone with a new challenge to take on. There are so many challenges available online – in art, writing and photography to name a few. These are the areas I usually seek out, but I’ve seen some on decluttering, weight loss and personal improvement. Where ever your interests lie, you’ll find something to challenge yourself.

Photography Challenges

My favourite challenge is at “Shadow Shot Sunday“, where shadows are posted each Saturday. I have become addicted to seeking out shadows where ever I can.

ImageSky Watch Friday”  is a fun challenge that focuses on capturing skies, one of my favourite subjects.Image

Messy Little Details” is a weekly photo challenge on Thursdays, that looks at the messy details of our lives, in a fun way.

If you love flowers there are several photo challenges. I usually do these in the late spring and summer.

Flowers Today

I Love macro Flowers

ABC Wednesday, which posts on Tuesdays, is a fun weekly challenge that can be met in so many ways. Each week a different letter of the alphabet is the focus and everyone responds to that letter. I have chosen to do it through art. This week , we will be at “K”.

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Art Challenges

There are so many art challenges. Here are a couple of weekly ones I enjoy:

Collage Obsession

Inspiration Avenue

There are several that encourage creativity and have challenges often:

Creative Every Day

Daisy Yellow

Art Journal every Day

Gelli Paper Party

I have only scratched the surface. Plug in any challenge you seek and there will be many to find. The writing challenges are numerous as well, but I am sure you could list those.

It was the art challenges that really got me creating again and I still take part in these several times a month. It is the community of bloggers who make the challenge so much more enjoyable – as it is with the Slice of Life.