From Waffles to Writing Books

M-m-m-m, oatmeal with brown sugar are just what a body needs on a damp, cold Monday morning in a hotel far from home. I am sipping my coffee, blowing on the spoonful of creamy warmth as I peruse the USA Today front page. Several people have arrived in the dining area. They are milling about the breakfast area making their choices for the first meal of the the day.

All of a sudden, I begin to notice activity in the waffle section. Two men are standing around, making comments on the news story above their heads as the wife of one man comes over, “What are you doing?” she inquires of her husband.

“I thought I’d have a waffle,” he replies. She glances over to the waffle irons.

“Did you put batter in it and turn it over?” wife asks. I believe she already knows the answer to this question.

A look of puzzlement crosses the man’s face. “I thought it already had that in it. Don’t I just wait here for the waffle?”

Exasperation with head shaking describes the wife, as if this is not an unusual response from her husband. “You have to put batter in the waffle machine, then flip it over. The timer will beep when it is ready.” she says in a very calm voice.

“Oh, I guess I would just have been standing here a while if you didn’t come over here.” he says with a laugh as he watches his wife pour the batter into the waffle iron and flip it over. She walks away before the timer beeps. Her breakfast is getting cold. After the waffle iron beeps, he is able to wrestle the waffle to his plate and join his wife at the table.

I suppose the wife has always done it all for her husband. This makes him helpless in new situations. I remember this scene when I am working with kindergarten teachers today. They have a difficult time believing that their students can be successful and independent in writer’s workshop (after all they are only five). I continue to sing the song,” Kindergarten’s Can Do Writing Workshop.” You know the tune, it all starts with a belief that your students have something to say. Today I brought thinking by Katie Wood Ray, a blog  post by Katie Keier (Catching Readers Before They Fall), and another blog post  from a  kindergarten teacher, Mrs. Wills to try to convince them kindergarten students can write books. Not just they can, but they should be writing books! If they (teachers) always do the thinking for their students, those students will still be standing there waiting for someone to tell them what to write. I hope my message made them think about stepping out and giving this a try with their students.

Which Day?

Do you know my favorite day of the week?

It could be Friday. I especially love Friday evenings. The feeling that time stands still. The work week is over and the weekend stretches ahead of me. Ahhhhh . . . but no, it’s not Friday.

It could be Saturday. No alarm clocks going off, I can roll over and sleep a bit longer. The day is mine to mold and shape. I might not even have to cook dinner, but nope it’s not Saturday either.

You, yes, you who are reading this should be able to guess my favorite day. You are a part of this day. You make this day because you read my words. You make comments that make me smile and allow me to be a writer for a day. Clicking on Check Mail, every chance I get. Is there a new message that says “comment-reply@word. . .”? Oh goody, there are two! Check again, there’s another, and the cycle continues all day long. Days later another comment may appear and my heart races again to find out what someone thinks. When I am in schools working, I can only check during lunch and it is the first thing I do as I walk to the car leaving school.

I get to peek inside your life and mind by reading your words. I love learning about what is happening in your part of the world and I do mean around the world. That is amazing to think we can be connected across oceans, mountains, and the great plains. I miss your voice when it is silent. I know that you might need a break, but just know that there is someone out here in the cyber-world wondering what you are up to and why didn’t you share today?

So by now you know that my favorite day is  . . . drum roll . . . TUESDAYS! I never dreamed that this would become a constant in my life. Even when I don’t have anything to say, I say something and you talk to me. Thank you for all your comments and letting me view your life at least once a week.

See you next week?

The Season Begins

Is it just me or has the Christmas season started earlier than ever? I love Christmas, but it should start after Thanksgiving. It should not be evident before Halloween. However, the world did not ask me (can’t imagine why).

There is one place where I can accept Christmas prior to Thanksgiving. That would be at a Trans-Siberian Orchestra concert. In August I got tickets as soon as they went on sale. This would be the fifth Christmas concert for us. I couldn’t wait! I L-O-V-E the music!

Walking from the parking garage to the arena you can see the excitement in the steps of the concert-goers. Next to the arena nine huge Prevost motor homes idle plus there were several semis parked in the loading bay. I walk just a bit quicker, as if my quick steps will start the concert sooner. Voices chatter excitedly as we wait for the concert to begin.

The stage darkens, bodies move into place. The silhouette of each musician strikes the pose. Strobe lights flash, BOOM –  the music begins and does not let up for two and a half hours. We are lost in a Christmas world of rocking music, then too suddenly the music is over. Lights are back up and slowly we reenter the world of November, but there is a song echoing in in our minds as we begin the walk back to the parking garage.

Now the CDs are in the car and I can relive the music of that night over and over. Attending this concert makes it so much easier to endure the stores pushing  Christmas before Thanksgiving.

Lights, music, action!

A Voice from the Yard

Lately I feel as though I am running on the hamster’s wheel. When I am home, I am preparing for schools. If I am not at home, I am in a school working with teachers. There is no time in-between to sit back, relax, and enjoy the season. This doesn’t make for an interesting slice of life episode. So, this week I have taken on a persona of an inanimate object I can view from the window of my office: the pansies below the maple tree.
We are suffocating, does no one care? A few weeks ago we were plucked from the only home we’ve ever known (a black plastic box) and deposited under this tree. Life was great! What a view of all the comings and goings of the neighborhood. We’ve put down roots and just started to get comfortable when leaves began to fall. At first we thought, “These leaves are so pretty, maybe they will give us some warmth for the frosty nights.” A few are fine, but come on, this is ridiculous! No one can see how pretty we are. Everyone is talking about the colors in the leaves. Don’t they see how cute we are? We’ve got pretty colors too. Who will do something about this?
Vroom, vroom, what’s that? A leaf blower? No, it’s a leaf vacuum! We are saved! That amazing tool has devoured all the leaves and now we are back in our rightful place of being admired for our pretty colors.
The world thinks we are fragile, but actually we are  very hardy. We will watch the neighborhood through all forms of weather. Blooms will vanish when the flakes fly, but they will be back when the winds warm the air in the spring.

A Shower

The night frosted the world outside.

As the sun rose, it slowly warmed the sparkling glitter.

It began as a drip, drip, drip

One leaf, two, three

Like drops of water falling from a leaky faucet.

Slowly it became a constant drizzle.

A slight breeze created a blizzard!

How did they know?

The puddle of leaves are a rainbow.