Monday, December 30, 2013

Special Time - One Night

The Tuesday Slice of Life is hosted by the Two Writing Teachers blog.  Go there to visit the other"slicers"! I'm looking forward to more great posts from Stacey, Tara, Dana, Betsy, Anna, and Elisabeth!


  Hurrah!  The Cybil's finalists will be announced on January 1st!  Watch for them!



            I believe I’ll do my reflecting from 2013 in small chunks, a bit at a time.  It’s been a long year with reflecting built in, so it’s not a good time for me to re-look again.  But-for this end-of-2013 post, I want to thank so many thoughtful commenters, friends, writers.  It was a wonder of a year in that part of my life.  I was able to attend the All-Write Conference in Indiana in June and meet so many with whom I had only an online connection, very special indeed to meet such a terrific group, and have 
lo-o-ng conversations.  Thanks Bonnie, Ramona, Robin, Katherine, Amy, Betsy, Elsie and to Ruth, Deb G. and Mary Helen for being such terrific welcomers!


            I also attended NCTE just a few weeks ago and found more people to meet and spend time with, like Stacey, Catherine and Gigi, and was also able to re-connect with some, like Bonnie and Ruth, although too brief.  Plus, I met others from the Monday Reading meme and from Poetry Friday.  Exciting to actually meet those I think I know, but only online.  It was especially wonderful to room with Tara, an immediate friend and teacher whom I admire so much.  We’ve said it before.  Wouldn’t it be fun for us all to teach together!

            Time for a big shout-out to Betsy for her wonderful poetic creation, the monthly “Chalk-A-Bration”.  I haven’t missed many, and it’s always fun to see what others ‘chalk-up’ for us.  Here’s mine for this end of 2013!


If you can’t read very well, here’s the text!

Betsy- cheers for end-of-year-fun
where you’re asking everyone
to gather all their creativity
and chalk rainbows of poetry!

              I had a wonderful Christmas week, with my son and family here all week, daughter and family dropping in or having everyone at their home some of the time.  The final night before my son, daughter-in-law and grandson left, we four went to our botanic gardens for their annual Blossoms of Light—awesome.  It was a milder than usual evening and incredible to see the numerous ways they lit the trees and shrubs, or created with lights in other ways.  We strolled through the dark, only lit by colorful sparkles, sometimes spotlights splashing our clothes and faces.   Most everyone was quiet, sometimes there was music, other times just the happy sounds of people laughing, ohing and ahing, or saying, ‘take a picture here!’. 



           We had to walk a few blocks because there were so many people, but another surprise happened afterwards on our way to the car.  I love this picture and hope you can see (imagine) what I see.  It is an old tree to the side of the sidewalk, and there as I looked, I saw the bear.  Can you see its head on the left, body poking out a little on the right?  I think a story could be crafted from this ‘found bear’.  Does she come out at night when everything is quiet?  Did the crowds keep her trapped during this holiday time? My imagination is running away!



I shared this quote Saturday, and want to share again, a favorite of mine.  From Rainer Maria Rilke: 
                 “And now, we welcome the new year, full of things that have never been.”


Happy New Year Everyone!

38 comments:

  1. Love it all Linda! That chalk poem is special, thank you for the amazing shout out and always being such a huge supporter of Chalk-A-Bration. It was great meeting you this past June, I hope we can do it again sometime. :) Happy New Year to one of the most thoughtful and committed bloggers I know!

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    1. Thank you Betsy-me too, me too! Looking forward to another chalking and teaching year with you!

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  2. A wonderful celebration of lights, bears, and family. Linda, you are once again top commenter on my blog, so I'll be sending you a copy of Illuminate, my Christmas poetry book. Thanks for being such a wonderful supporter of this community.

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    1. Margaret, I love reading your blog, and the reward is seeing your creative way with words! But thank you for thinking of me with that beautiful book.

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  3. I lingered for a while with you and your family at the Blossoms of Light - such a perfect place, it seems, on so many levels, to gather with dear ones and reflect upon the year past, the love present, the year that beckons. Happy New Year, dear friend.

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    1. You are a thoughtful friend, Tara, & I hope we'll be able to connect again in 2014! Happy Days ahead for you too!

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  4. I think about you often, friend. You are a warrior! I'm thinking about that image of you and your family walking on the beach... Happy Happy New Year!

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    1. Thanks Bonnie-that was a special evening too! We're going back! Hope your new year begins spectacularly, and looking forward to our next meeting!

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  5. What a beautiful post, Linda, filled with joy. Happy New Year to you.

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    1. Thanks Katherine. Same to you also. Hope you have a fantastic year with family, work, friends!

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  6. You and Elsie are my commenting mentors and heroes! When I first started blogging last summer, I could count on the two of you to leave a thoughtful comment every week. I could tell you took the time to think about what you wrote, and I felt like you meant it. As a new blogger, that meant the world to me. Because of that, I now try to comment on as many blogs as I can...because I know how important it is. I am hoping to attend the next All-Write conference and meet many you. Thank you for welcoming me to this community and making me feel that my writing does matter! Happy 2104 to you!

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    1. How wonderful to look forward to meeting at All-Write. It was such a great time last year! Thanks for the compliment, Leigh Anne. As I say at the end of this blog-having a conversation is what's important! Happy, happy new year!

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  7. I like the light in the darkness. There is always light. And magic.
    You have been a wonderful person to connect to through blogging. Thank you for sharing your stories and thoughts and kindness. Head uut aastat!

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    1. It was a magical night, Terje. Wish I could have taken many, many pictures! And you're so welcome! I love reading your posts, hearing all about your life, the good parts and the not so good! Happy New Year to you!

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  8. What a year it has been for you, Linda. Lots of professional and personal highs. However, I know it was also the year Arvie passed away. I know it was a long good-bye, but I'm sure that didn't make it any easier.

    Happy New Year to you, Linda. May 2014 be a good year for you & your loved ones.

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    1. Thank you, Stacey. You have been such a warm support this year. Looking forward to more goodness for teachers at TWT! Happy New Year to you and your family!

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  9. Dear Linda,
    As always, your words are thoughtful and beautiful. The communities that are built through blogging are amazing. I hope I can meet you in person some day. I love the images you illustrated in this post. I can see a writing lesson in there somewhere. :) Like others mentioned above, your comments on my blog always mean so much and you've helped me do a better job at leaving comments for others too. Happy New Year Linda! I hope this year is filled with lots of happiness for you.

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    1. Thank you Julie. I've been gone since the am, & now am back, ready to usher in this new year! I appreciate all your comments, too! Happy New Year to you!

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  10. Your post reminded me again of the importance of attending professional conferences (even if you have to pay from your own pocket), making connections and fostering those connections! I am also glad that your holiday season was so beautiful! Happy New Year Linda!

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    1. Thanks Jaana. Both these times were wonderful, and I'm looking forward to other ones in 2014. Hope you are able to attend some time! Happy New Year!

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  11. I love your chalk poem and pictures Linda! I really enjoyed getting to meet you at All-Write this summer...the connections I've made from blogging have been amazing! Happy New Year!

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    1. Thanks, Robin. It was a lovely time, wasn't it? Hope to see you next year too! Happy New Year!

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  12. What fun is packed inside this post! I love it all -- the chalk, the lights, and the cute tree-bear! The New Year quote makes me remember how long I've "known" you, because I remember you posting it before. I hope 2014 brings you a lot of joy!

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    1. It is indeed my favorite quote for the new year, Jennifer. One year I even made Christmas/New Year's cards with it! We have known each other a long while. I still remember your amazing moves of the classrooms-a few years ago! Happy, happy new year to you and your family!

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  13. Linda,
    I love reading more about you through your posts and how you capture things beautifully with pictures and your words.

    I loved meeting all of you at All Write too. It was life-changing. I've always wanted to go to NCTE. That is on my teacher bucket list :). I'm hoping I can go to All Write again this summer and see you all again.

    How do I link up slices? I've only done it once, and it is so hard for me to figure out each time. I'd like to share mine too.

    I hope you don't mind me asking. You seem to have the blogging thing down :).

    Happy 2014,
    Jen

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    1. Hi Jen, All Write was very special wasn't it? I'm really looking forward to it again. I loved NCTE for very different reasons, but the All Write is the favorite-maybe because it's smaller. As for linking. Can you find the link at Two Writing Teachers? When you post, be sure you have clicked on your post title so you can get the full URL at the top to copy. Then just act like you're commenting on TWT & you're linking up. Write back to tell me if this helps. Hope so! Thanks for your lovely comment, and Happy New Year!

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  14. I can not wait to read the bear story(and I DO see it, too). Thank you for sharing your voice through all that 2013 brought your way. There is something powerful in writing our way through all life has to offer. You told some very poignant stories with love and grace. Touching. Happy New Year, Linda.

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    1. Oh, so glad you can see that bear. I will write the story, puzzling over it already! Thank you Kim. I appreciate your words. Happy New Year to you and family!

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  15. Love, love, love the Rilke quote. Perfect for tonight! I'm a member of the Botanic Gardens, and go often, but I haven't been to Blossoms of Light this year. I need to find out if it's still going on. I want to go find that bear.

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    1. It's still going until tomorrow, Carol. I belong too so we'll have to go together in the spring! How to find the bear: leave the gardens & turn right (south). Walk down the walk almost to the first street. All the way down! The tree is off the sidewalk on the left, very big! Hope you can find it, maybe in the day? I need to return too to look! So glad you like the quote-see you soon! Happy New Year too!

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  16. What a year it has been! I think of it as my year of slicers since I met so many this year. Meeting in person adds a rich layer to knowing the person you thought you knew. Thanks for all you do by responding to so many blogs. The botanical gardens sound so beautiful and the bonus is sharing it with all your family. Truly priceless!

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    1. Thanks Elsie, it was a pleasure meeting you in June, and I'm really looking forward to All Write being another highlight for us too. I loved your lights at Silver Dollar City, too. Happy New Year!

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  17. What a year. I am so glad that you had time with your family. The lights look beautiful. Happy New Year.

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    1. Thank you Jone. So looking forward to working with you again this year! Happy New Year to you as well!

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  18. Linda, what a pleasure to read this end of the year slice and see your bear. It reminds me of the picture book, Bear Has a Story to Tell. Now we're all waiting - Linda Has a Story to Tell about a Bear. One of my treasured times of 2013 was attending All Write and spending time with my slicing friends! Happy 2014!

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    1. Quite wonderful to hear your support, Ramona! Happy New Year-It's January 1st! The All-Write was a wonderful time, I agree. I remember our walk and other talks fondly! I hope your year begins spectacularly!

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  19. The Blossoms of Light are so beautiful - as are your thoughtful and kind words. I wish you all the best in this new year, and I thank you for the encouragement and inspiration I always find in your writing. I do see the bear - and I look forward to reading your tales about him (her?). Happy 2014!

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    1. Thank you! It was a beautiful night, not so cold, just fun to be out! Now, cold & snowy-I wonder how many will show up on this final night, new year's day?

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Having a conversation is a good thing!