I couldn’t believe my luck! Delectable delights waiting to be devoured and I was the only one there. Look at all the maple seeds (they are also called samaras or kids call them helicopters – but I call them delicious!) just laying around.

I must admit, I wasn’t paying much attention to my surroundings because I was starving. I was here last week checking out this location and no one was around. Imagine my shock when a robin attacked me, immediately followed by a small blackish bird. They flew right at me and pecked my head! What was that all about? Quickly I dove for cover.

The hostas were perfect for hiding. I waited for a bit then cautiously crept out to continue my feast. Have you ever tried these seeds? They are the best in the spring!

Just as I settled back in for my feast, the birds were back interrupting my meal. I would have gladly shared my seeds, but they weren’t having it. They kept flying right into me so I had to hide out under the arborvitae tree.

Cautiously I crept out to continue my dinner, but I wasn’t safe for long.

Thank goodness for the safety in the hostas! Do you see that robin sitting on the fence. It was just waiting for me to creep out of my hiding place.

Eventually I gave up trying to have a peaceful meal. I climbed up the fence and was strolling along the top when the #%$@! bird came charging. I scurried across the top of that fence and hid in a dense viburnum bush. Maybe later I will go back and snack on a few seeds. Want to join me?

Find more stories, or write one of your own to share.

Day 30: Encounters of the Phone Kind

Encounter #1: The first time it happened, I was taken aback. I was getting into my car after a day of working, and thought I’d better check to see if I had any texts. My ringer had been on silence during the day.

How did my phone know I was going home? That freaked me out a little. Then when it happened again and again, I assumed this was something built into the phone that always told you how long it would take you to get home. Hmmm, is someone tracking my movements?

One morning I got into the car, looked at my phone, but this time it was telling me how long it would take me to get to one of my schools. What? I wasn’t going to that school. The three days before I had gone to that school. Apparently it had been tracking my movements and assumed I would be returning to that school. This was getting a little creepy.

Now I look at my phone just to see where it thinks I’m going. Sometimes it’s right.

Encounter #2: As I climbed out of my car, I heard a voice talking to me from my front left pocket. Had I pocket dialed someone? Quickly I pulled the phone from my pocket. Apparently, Siri thought I was talking to her. I must have bumped something because I certainly don’t talk to her. When I have actually tried to use her, she never understands me. I was not about to engage in a conversation now.  I quickly turned her off. She must have gotten her feelings hurt because she remained silent until. . .

Encounter #3: I was sitting at my desk, talking to my mother on the house phone. My cell phone was sitting on my desk, when all of a sudden Siri began talking. My mother heard the voice and asked if someone was with me? I laughed and said no, it’s just my cell phone. Once again, Siri didn’t make any sense.

Have you had any surprises from your phone?

Side note: elsie is my blogging name, my real name is LeAnn. 🙂 At least she knew how to spell my name right.



Unwelcome Guest

Be sure to visit Two Writing Teachers for more slices of life.

Be sure to visit Two Writing Teachers for more slices of life.

She dropped hints that
Her arrival was imminent.
Scratchy throat,
Heaviness in chest
All signs
She would barge in, uninvited.
She visited others
All winter long,
Now that spring is on
My doorstep
She popped in
For an extended visit.
She said,
“You are long overdue.
I haven’t seen you in a year.”
She brought me
Her finest
Hacking cough,
Thick phlegm,
Drippy nose,
Tired eyes,
Pounding headache.
She is a bad influence,
All I want to do is
Lay around
With my eyes closed.
It’s time for her
To hit the road,
I have work to do.
Good-bye cold,
I will not let you stay.
Pack up your symptoms and move on!

A Mix-Up

In May Stenhouse had a blog tour  of the second edition of The Daily 5 by Gail Boushey and Joan Moser, AKA “The 2 Sisters.” All you had to do was leave a comment on the blogs and you would be entered for a signed copy of this book.

Any chance to win a book, I’m in. I’ve been known to make a comment every now and then, even with no carrot dangling. 🙂 Lucky me! I got a Twitter message from Mandy Robek at Enjoy and Embrace Learning that I was a lucky winner! (Thank you Mandy!) Woo hoo! All I had to do was send her a message with my address. I did, so now I began waiting for my book.

About six weeks after winning, the book arrived from Stenhouse. Excitedly,  I opened the package. Did I just dream that it would be signed or was it? That was what I wanted to check out first. There was a lovely note from Chandra Lowe and she even spelled my name right! (see photo)

photo 2 (12)

Then I quickly flipped open the cover, turned a page and there it was, signed by the Two Sisters! I am smiling to myself and thinking how cool this is. While I’m looking at the inscription, my friend is peering over my shoulder. She asks, “Who’s Maureen?” (see photo)

photo 1 (11)

Now my brain begins to process. I had noticed the name Maureen, but it didn’t register that it was the wrong name. I began to laugh. Somewhere, someone has a book inscribed to LeAnn. Apparently things must have gotten busy at the Stenhouse offices and there was a slight mix up in books. Now I have a funny story to share with teachers as I introduce them to the Daily 5.  🙂


First World Problems Continue

Previously I wrote about a few issues that are considered first world problems. I share a few more today.

Ouch! Sharp stabbing pain pierces my back. I reach behind me, readjust the pillow, lean back, and ouch! again stabbing pain. Repeat previous procedure several more times. Thoroughly frustrated I pull the offending pillow out from behind me. I begin the search for that minuscule needle sharp feather. Aha! I found you! The offending feather is plucked from the pillow. The rest of the feathers get a fluffing before the pillow is positioned behind my back. I am concerned that by removing the errant feather, I will eventually have no feathers inside. I have tried poking the feather back, (while most of it is inside the pillow) but it just doesn’t work.

Half off all jeans the sign proclaimed. Good, I need a new pair, so the purchase is made. They are a darker blue than I’ve had before, so they are washed before wearning. I wear the new pair, love the new pair! What’s that? My light colored leather seat is turning blue. I return to the store with my tale of blue leather that is not supposed to be blue. Soak them in salt water the manager of the store advises me. Jeans are soaked in salt water for twenty-four hours. The leather is still turning blue. Sadly the jeans are returned. Now I have a black pair of jeans. I wonder, will my leather turn black?

We have two cars, one is keyless. Keyless is a lovely feature because you don’t have to get a key out to open doors or even start the car. You just need to be near the car and the doors unlock automatically. The problem arises when you have been driving the keyless car, those features become automatic actions. So why is the door not unlocking? Oh, that’s right, this car uses a key. I search through my purse to find the key so that I can get in. How annoying!

Once inside (whatever car) there is the issue of syncing your phone to the bluetooth system. I always forget until someone calls while I am driving and I discover that my phone is not the current phone on the bluetooth system. Why can’t the car manufacturers figure out how to make the system recognize the phone that is in the car?

So what first world problems have you had to deal with lately? By the way, my chair has been sinking as I’ve been typing.

Name’s the Game

Sunday’s paper had an insert that declared this week is “Celebrate Your Name” week. They had a focus for each day of the week. Since I obviously didn’t follow through with their daily suggestions, I thought I’d fit them all into one post. So hang on, you are going to find out more than you ever wanted to know about my name.


Some facts to know upfront:

  • elsie is not my given name (I know, you are not surprised)
  • elsie was created from my initials (LC)
  • elsie didn’t think she was much of a writer, so she did not want the world to know her real name for a while (I’m more confidant now)
  • the information below is about my birth name
  • I use both names, depending on how you know me 🙂

Sunday: Namesake Day

My mother was pregnant and on a boat to the Philippines to join my father at Clarke’s Air Force Base when she met a woman and her daughter. My mother declared that should her baby be a girl, she would be named LeAnn because that was such a beautiful name. As a child, I was not happy with the name choice. I grumbled about why did my mom meet that lady? No one else had a name like me. I was different, I did not like being different. I wanted to be a Debbie, there were several Debbie’s in my class at school.

Monday: Fun Facts About Names Day

It’s amazing what Google can do for you! I thought surely there are no facts about my name, but I was wrong, and a little right. There are no facts about my spelling (another painful hurdle I have with this name), but there was information on Leanne. Be prepared to be wowed:

  • it is the 1560 most popular name in the US
  • through some sort of calculations, it has been determined 217 people a year are named Leanne
  • 60% use it as a first name; 40% as a middle name
  • Urban dictionary states: A name normally given to only the most gorgeous of girls. (yeah, right) Plus a lot of other bits of nonsense.

Tuesday: Unique Names Day

I hated having that unique name (didn’t I mention that before?), so I feel for anyone with bizarre names. Here is my rule when naming children: You must be able to find a key chain, a pencil, a mini license plate, or something with the name you have selected for your child. No exceptions! Hence my son’s name is David.

Wednesday: Discover What Your Name Means Day

This information is according to American Meaning: 
In America the meaning of the name Leann is: Derived from an Irish Gaelic of Helen: (light;beautiful woman). Who knew?

Thursday: Name Tag Day

They say to wear a name tag that says, Hello, I’m _________ Not happening for this girl. I will be working, I will wear my name tag.

Friday: Middle Name Pride Day

Don’t have one, no pride here. My maiden name had two words, my mother decided since my first name sounds like two words I didn’t need a middle name. She didn’t want to burden that little baby with so many names. Thanks, mom!

Saturday: Descendants Day

I’m supposed to check out family tree. I don’t have to, my cousins already did it. Thanks cousins!

So there you have it, I’ve celebrated name week. Perhaps you will want to share your trials and joys of your name this month.

Hazard at Home

Are you aware washing your hands could be hazardous? Of course, not washing your hands could also be hazardous. However that’s another story for another day. On this day I need to warn you of the danger lurking at your sink.

Beware! This innocent looking bottle of hand soap can inflict pain.

Beware! This innocent looking bottle of hand soap can inflict pain.

Do you use liquid soap in a pump? If the answer is yes, take heed of my warning. I had to learn the hard, may I say painful way. Here is my sad tale . . .

I approached the sink nonchalantly, unaware of the danger ahead. I reached for the pump to plop a squirt in my hand. I applied even pressure to the top but no soap was dispensed. I pressed it slightly harder. There was a moment of resistance before the dam gave way and soap shot out in a variety of angles!

In a fraction of a second I was covered in clear soap goo. This goo smeared across my fuzzy fleece shirt, narrowly missed my mouth (fortunately it was closed), but landed just above my lip, and in my hair. However, that was not the worst! A miniscule speck shot into my right eye. Oh the burn!

I was aghast looking at my reflection in the mirror. Immediately I needed to attend to my eye. I rinsed and rinsed, but still it burned. I continued to furiously blink as I tended to the other landing places of the soap.

Once I was moderately cleaned up, I examined the soap bottle carefully. I had never been attacked by my soap before, so I wondered what had prompted this full frontal assault. Wedged in the opening of the pump was a lump of congealed soap. Apparently it had built up over time and I had not noticed this collection of semi-dried soap getting ready to attack the next user. I suppose I should be grateful that this did not occur when I was dressed to go some place special, thereby requiring a wardrobe change.

The rest of the day, my eye was tender. It was a constant reminder to look before pumping. I only hope this story serves as a warning to you, dear reader. Check the end of the pump and you will be spared. 🙂