Monday, October 29, 2012

Shh! Don't Tell My Kids.

     I never lived in a Mayberry RFD or on a Little House on the Praire. When I was growing up, our lack of quality or quantity of T.V. made us creative capable kids. Playing outdoors until the street lights flickered on, we dragged ourselves indoors. We begged our Mom, "Do we have to come inside?" With our hair tangled with dead leaves, faces covered in dirt, and hands full of stray animals, we would have stayed outside and played all night!
     I'm so thankful my boys have stayed so innocent in so many ways for so long. I love their carefree attitude about life, What's for dinner? Can so & so come over? How can I make money? Is my brother adopted?  If he says that one more time I'm gonna punch him in the face. With my whistle and black and white striped shirt, I play referee on all days ending in y.
     These days little tweenie-bopper girls (& even younger kids like 7 or 8 years old!) wear Justin B t-shirts and chat with friends about which boy they I'm seriously not that old, but when I was in ninth grade, I discovered boys existed. You can stop laughing now. Until I turned 13 or 14, I didn't know boys existed
      Today, kids need to be kids and boys just need to be boys. They need time to play, hike, participate in sports, beat each other up. Just kidding on that last one. So, I watch and observe children, especially my own. They have the greatest real life scenarios and friendships. Secretly, I write down snippets of their conversations and interactions between them and their friends. My observations have now turned into a full length middle-grade fiction novel. Oh, my! Just wait 'til they find out.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

No Writing Today!

The weekend. I convinced myself, when I woke up this morning, I would refrain from writing. After all, it's Sunday, and there is church and family and friends. My feet hit the floor and the first thing I grabbed was my favorite soft yellow hoodie. I cleansed my mind ready to tackle a fun-filled non-writing day. My eyes wandered down to the wording on my sweatshirt. The date 1885 in bold letters jumped out at me. I wonder what happened in that year?

Seeing old dates are like getting clues to a pirate's chest full of  hidden gold. No, I won't research today, I tell myself. Although I have a new picture book idea simmering in mind of a long ago inventor slash spy slash millionaire who met one very famous president....NOPE, I'm not writing today.

 Nothing gets done before I put my contacts in in the morning. I'm as blind as a bat. Bats aren't really blind.  When I taught fifth grade several years ago, my class went batty for a unit on bats. Wisconsin is full of fuzzy brown bats. We even took an evening trip to the Watertown Library for a close up look at those amazing creatures and learned all about echolocation. What a fantastic idea to incorporate bats into a novel. NOPE, Let it go, I say to myself.

I head for the kitchen (newly remodeled thanks to my awesome hubby!) and step over a purple macaroni yarn necklace and a dart board. I scoot past an old red tricycle--the same one I had as a child--and the memories wash over me. NOPE, I'm not going to write today.

Bags scattered around my living room, remind me I'm a busy person. First, the diaper bag hangs nearby, which only contains snacks and toys now that my daughter is three. Then the writing bag comes next, propped against the couch, becasue I do so much writing in my living room. Lastly, the  art bag reminds me I've been teaching art for the past eight years. This year I have a wonderful group of 3rd-6th graders. My daughter hands me a book to read--George Rodrigue's Are You Blue Dog's Friend? Maybe, I will write today.

May #IWSG: Mayday!

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