Wednesday, August 31, 2011
Tuesday, August 30, 2011
Monday, August 29, 2011
Without further ado, my very own guest blogger, LaRae Collins and Monday Morning Moment:
Some people think an adventure is something exotic and dangerous, like a safari or diving with sharks. But my adventures occur in unexpected places like the freezer section at Walmart. Daughter Kelli is often with me and since these events happen so often, we began saying, “Always an adventure” or “AAA” for short.
Little did I know that a quick trip to the Electra lumber store after school yesterday would turn into my most embarrassing adventure.
I needed a couple of small hooks for a project and a gentleman showed me which ones would likely work best. He took them to the wooden counter and motioned for a lady to come take my money. As I was digging change from my purse, the lady looked at me, then began saying, “Oh, oh, OH, OH” louder and louder. Then she pointed at my neck with each “OH.” I finally said, “What?” and she whisper-shouted “SPIDER!” At that instant, I felt it – scurrying from my neck down the front of my shirt.
I began a crazy spider-dance (it’s a miracle I didn’t make it rain!), but no arachnid appeared on the floor. Fear overcame modesty and I turned to Brenda’s dad Mr. Thompson who was standing beside me and said, “Mr. Thompson, turn your back ‘cause I’m comin’ out of this shirt.” Without looking up, he said, “Oh, ok” and started to turn. But the lady pointed around the corner to another room and told me to go in there.
Seconds later after a vigorous shaking of a shirt that was no longer on my body, there still was no spider. Thank goodness. Then I realized I couldn’t see my back, and the spider might be crouched there, just waiting to crawl his furry legs back up my back. Holding my shirt in front of me, I leaned out to ask the lady to check my back. But at that moment, the salesman, who had missed the first excitement, walked by peeked in to see what was going on. There I was, covered up, but obviously not wearing a shirt. He disappeared faster than the spider had!
Yesterday marked the beginning of our new adventure at school. There will be times when challenges seem to fall from the sky and make us squirm and want to do a crazy-dance. There will be days we feel like our best efforts are ineffective and we’ll wonder if WalMart is hiring greeters. But I am confident that miracle moments – those times you know you are where you are supposed to be – will outnumber the hard times. They always do. Let the adventure begin!
Sunday, August 28, 2011
I only bring this up to encourage people to read and react and leave comments on other writers' blog posts. It's great to be more of a community and less of a mass of individuals posting solo.
Saturday, August 27, 2011
- I would like to have dinner with Odd Thomas, but not at my house. He’s a fry cook in a diner in Pico Mundo, California; so he can cook for me. His specialty is pancakes and I'm quite fond of pancakes. A pancake breakfast for dinner will be a super celebration for me.
Tuesday, August 23, 2011 - Would you rather be transported magically into an imaginary world or a different time period in this world?
- Since I'm having breakfast with Odd, I may as well be transported magically to Southern California and save the air fare and the hassle of flying.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011 - What book did you always take out from the school library?
- When I was in elementary school there were no school libraries. In high school I was not aware that there were books to read in the school library, I thought everything was for reports. But we always went to the public library. The book I remember from my childhood is The Bobbsey Twins. (Aside: I went to amazon.com to check the spelling of Bobbsey and saw a 75th anniversary three book set (1979) with vintage reproductions of the original cover art. I remember those covers. Nostalgia, I ordered the set for someone very special.
Thursday, August 25, 2011 - What do you think about the act of banning books?
- Banning books is not an option. There are books that I would never read, would never let my children read and would advise other people not to read; but I would never try to take away a person's right to choose their own reading material. While on the subject, prepare to celebrate Banned Books Week the last week of September.
Friday, August 26, 2011 - Would you rather publish a work of fiction or a work of non-fiction?
- I would feel more comfortable publishing nonfiction, perhaps a newspaper column. It's what I already do, writing informative newsletters for my school, church and public library. My blog posts are essentially non-fiction being loosely memoirish.
- GS: Gingie, will you put this plug up?
- Me: No, remember you were supposed to leave the plug in so I can rinse my feet off in your water.
- GS: Oh yeah. Gingie, I needed to go to the bathroom so I just peed in the bathwater.
- Me: Hand me the plug.
Friday, August 26, 2011
Two days of rest are headed toward us like bright and beautiful waves of hope.
Let’s write, shall we? Without wondering if it’s right or not.
Take five minutes and remember what it feels like to weave words together...without worrying about how they're edited or perfected.
Thursday, August 25, 2011
- A teenager told me her mouse and keyboard weren't working. I fiddled with the mouse, rebooted the machine, unplugged and plugged in USB cords...the light shone in the mouse again, for awhile. 10 minutes later the teen was back at my desk again with the same problem. I turned off the machine and logged her on to another one.
- A patron was trying to log on to a computer using her library card number but when striking a number key, it displayed the character above the number instead of the number. No, she wasn't holding down the shift key. The keypad wouldn't work at all, and yes, Num Lock was on.
- A man had a 62 page print job. He put in $6.20 but only got 6 pages and a paper with an error message on it. I have never seen that before. I had him send it to the printer again and I bypassed the payment. Same result. Next he skipped the bad page and printed pages 8-62 and got three more pages, so he skipped page 11 and printed 12-61. Finally he got the whole document printed minus the error pages (which by the way were all similar with tables and dollar amounts).
- All night long people put their money in the printer, the printer gobbled it up but would not spit out their prints or even give them back their money. Sarah and I were continually bypassing the coin machine to print each person's papers for them.
- We had two computers that were on and displaying the standard screen message "Available for use." But on the control computers these two computers appeared to be off. Since they were off, according to the control computer, no one could use them. I rebooted both of them which restored their on status with the control computers.
- A lady registered at the control computer, it assigned her a computer, she went to sign in at that computer and got the message, "You are already logged on another computer." She came to the desk and Sarah checked, she was reserved for computer 20 but computer 20 was not going to cooperate. I don't even know how Sarah resolved that one.
Wednesday, August 24, 2011
Tuesday, August 23, 2011
Monday, August 22, 2011
Sunday, August 21, 2011
Saturday, August 20, 2011
- Monday, August 15, 2011 - Where is your favorite place to read?
- Tuesday, August 16, 2011 - Do you prefer to own books or borrow them from a friend or the library?
- Wednesday, August 17, 2011 - Talk about your favorite bookstore.
- Thursday, August 18, 2011 - What was the last book you read?
- Friday, August 19, 2011 - Do you like paper books or e-readers?
Friday, August 19, 2011
Today's theme is "NEW." Boy, can I talk about new. I'm not sure I can be as positive as I actually like to be. But on 5 minute friday, the idea is to write for 5 minutes without editing, without correcting, just write continuously and see what happens. (I couldn't get the picture to be an active link to the website so you'll have to click the link in the text above if you want to check it out.)
So, NEW...we just started a new school year. They say new is good, change is good. Well, it eventually is but right now it is difficult to deal with. There's a Chinese saying, something like "Before all great things comes chaos." I almost always find that to be true. I am back full as time librarian this year. I knew (new) about that last year. I was given the extra duty of 7th grade sponsor and found out about it right before the bell rang to begin the first day of school. The 7th graders came to tell me. I hate surprises like that. Today they totally changed the afternoon schedule (our school is small) giving me a new class in the afternoon with 25 students. I had prepared for under ten. SURPRISE! I've had a few new ideas of things I can do with these kids in my "Service Learning" class. There's something else new I'd like to try, retirement!
OK, that's my 5 minutes. I have to admit, I am going to correct the typos and misspelled words.
Thursday, August 18, 2011
Wednesday, August 17, 2011
Tuesday, August 16, 2011
Monday, August 15, 2011
Sunday, August 14, 2011
Saturday, August 13, 2011
- Monday, August 8, 2011, Do you always tell the truth?
- Tuesday, August 9, 2011, What do you think about white lies?
- Wednesday, August 10, 2011, Fictionalize a boring part of your day and retell it.
- Thursday, August 11, 2011, Unpack the statement: truth is stranger than fiction
- Friday, August 12, 2011, What character would you never want to meet?
Friday, August 12, 2011
These are some of the funny things that happened to me at the gym.
1. I start my routine in the circuit room (like Curves and why we chose this gym). After thirty minutes on those machines I go out into the BIG ROOM of machines. One machine I like is for angel wings. Not sure the flappy parts will ever go away but my upper arms are getting stronger.
You sit down to use this machine, raise your hands and bend your elbows so you look like you're about to do the chicken dance, grab than handles and push down so the weights rise. One day I pushed down and nothing happened. I looked at the weights and some he-man had it on 150 lbs. Yikes! I put it down to a respectable 60 lbs. Still it wouldn't budge. I stood up to get some leverage and pushed down and still nothing. I wondered why I was so weak when a young man came over and told me this machine operated by pulling UP on the handles. The machine I wanted was one over. I laughed and thanked him and he told me not to feel bad, he'd done the same thing.
2. I like to workout in the morning when it isn't so busy, but on workdays that isn't possible so I keep a gym bag in my car. I don't always remember to put clean clothes in it and return it to the car after I use it. On one such occasion I noticed it missing when I got to work so on my lunch break I went to the mall to see what workout clothes I could find on sale. I found 4th of July T-shirt on clearance for $4: navy blue with red, white and blue bird houses on it. The only workout pants in my size were black nordic track long pants. I didn't try anything on, I just bought them and went back to work.
Later that day, at the gym, I put on my new gym clothes. The nordic track pants were leggings, totally form fitting. The T-shirt was short and did not cover much of my big middle part. To top off this stunning blue shirt/black pants outfit were the brown tennis shoes (they live in my trunk) that I bought at Walmart one time when I'd just forgotten to include shoes in my gym bag. It took courage to walk out in public like that. I didn't hear any snickers in the circuit room so I used the machines, did a mile on the treadmill and thanked God that the people at my gym don't seem to care what anyone looks like.
3. I've noticed at my gym that guys like to workout in pairs. They spur each other on and work harder when it's a competition. I was on the waist-twisty machine and two young men behind were me using the sit-up machine. After continually not keeping up with his buddy, one boy said, "I need to work out with somebody weaker than me." I turned around and offered, "You could work out with me." He laughed and said, "Are you sure you're weaker than me?" I love a person with a sense of humor.
4. I have a big Great Pyrenees puppy (8 months, 80 pounds). I fed her before I left to exercise. She jumped on me, maybe to try to get me to stay. "Ouch Bear! Don't do that. Your claws hurt when you jump on me."
I didn't realize until I was on the waist-twisty machine again that she had ripped a hole in my workout pants. I was given this information by a concerned gym member. She put her hand on my shoulder and said, "Did you know you have a hole in your pants?" I shook my head, she continued, "Well, so many people wear their clothes ripped and with holes and I thought maybe you were one of them. But in case you just had a hole in your pants and didn't know it, I thought I better tell you." I thanked her and slunk away to check out the damage in the ladies locker room.
Sure enough, there was a big hole in my pants right where bear's claw had pierced my leg. Luckily my underwear wasn't showing and I had on a long baggy T-shirt that covered the hole when I kept it pulled down. I walked a mile on the treadmill, pulling my T-shirt down every few steps, before going home.
5. The kids who work at the desk are the greatest. They are so friendly and nice. I lost my ID tag moments after they gave it to me so the second time I went I asked what I should do to get a new one. They said they could sign me in by my name. From then on they remembered my name and I just smile and say hello while everyone else is showing their ID tags. Makes me feel special.
One day when leaving, the boys and I had a short, witty goodbye conversation. I got to my car and realized I'd left my street clothes in a locker. I wanted to just go home but I couldn't leave my clothes there so I sucked it up and went back in. "I forgot my street clothes." They didn't look surprised. Maybe they know me better than I thought.
Joining this gym was a great idea. I'm healthier and stronger, I come into contact with a variety of interesting people, and it's all good fodder for blogging.
Thursday, August 11, 2011
I recently got an email from my professional organization telling me about a new $500 million state-level grant competition. Each state can apply for a $60 million grant to fund early childhood education for kids in poverty, cradle-Kindergarten. That may be a worthy project (or maybe not), but in either case, we have a national debt to pay. $500 million dollars may be a drop in the bucket that can hold trillions of dollars, but we have got to start putting drops in that bucket in order to get the debt paid off, not find new ways to spend money we don't have.
This is wrong on so many levels.
Wednesday, August 10, 2011
Choir members begin to file in from a side entrance. The Baptist minister and a Methodist lay speaker take seats on either side of the pulpit. The pianist plays a variety of old time and well loved hymns.
The music stops, the preacher stands and says, "Please rise for the family." Everyone stands. The funeral home people walk to the front of the church followed by the family. When they are all seated, the preacher speaks again. "You may be seated."
The Methodist lay speaker begins with prayer. He continues with a eulogy, beginning with the day the Lord spoke Beulah's name and brought her into existence. It's a celebration of Beulah's life with funny stories, touching memories, and a testimony to the impact she made as she lived her 81 years.
As the lay speaker sits, the choir stands and belts out "I'll Fly Away."
Some glad morning when this life is o'er, I'll fly away; to a home on God's celestial shore, I'll fly away...
Tuesday, August 9, 2011
Monday, August 8, 2011
Sunday, August 7, 2011
Saturday, August 6, 2011
What? No prompts on Saturday?
Since I haven’t used any of the prompts this week. It’s a great time to catch up with a prompt list.
- Monday – What is your favorite book? The Bible
If I could only have one book, it would be the Bible. It contains every type of literature, evokes every emotion, instructs, and is continually new. I can read the same passage multiple times and get new insights every time.
Picking my favorite work of fiction is not so easy. I won’t even go there.
- Tuesday – Who is your favorite author? IDK
As a librarian I get asked that question a lot. I can’t just pick one. It’s like asking, “Which is your favorite child?” I think JK Rowling is one of the best current authors and I loved the Harry Potter series and look forward to her future work. But I also enjoy many mystery writers, too many to name.
- Wednesday – Have you ever wished you could enter a book? No, not really.
The kind of books I read (murder and mayhem) are too scary to become an active participant. If I were going to enter a book, I’d like to be in one that Mr. Rogers wrote. I would love to have met him.
- Thursday – What character would you most like to meet? Again, hard to say.
Two endearing characters are Dexter (Jeff Lindsay) and Odd Thomas (Dean Koontz). Dexter is way too scary and over the edge so I’ll go with quirky Odd Thomas.
- Friday - What is the best first sentence you can think of off the top of your head?
"It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…" (A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens)
Is there a better first sentence than that?
Friday, August 5, 2011
Thursday, August 4, 2011
I used to read one book at a time. I kept it by my bed and read before I went to sleep.
Then I moved to rural Oklahoma where it's a 20-30 minute drive into "town" and I discovered audio books. Now I always have a book going in my car. It's a different reading experience, sometimes better. The Secret Life of Bees was richer read with a southern accent, something I wouldn't have conjured up myself. Jim Dale reading Harry Potter is amazing. If you've read the books and seen the movies and wish there were more, read the audio books. Maybe by the time you get through the seven books, J.K. will have written something new.