Friday, May 9, 2014

Celebrating Words, in conversation

Thanks to Ruth Ayres for Celebration Saturday! Tweet at CelebrateLu  Link up here!

             This week, I'm celebrating the gifts of words: 

  • I celebrated my mother yesterday in a poem for all mothers. It's for all of you, too, if you didn't get a chance to read it. You can find it here.
  • Today I celebrate my daughter and daughter-in-law, wonderful mothers who, like many of you, juggle such full lives, raising children, managing the household, their professional lives, and offering me such support, especially in these past challenging years. A proverb for them: "Mother is a verb, not a noun."
  • I started a writing workshop for a small group this week. We'll only meet for a few weeks, and they were so excited. They all have chosen personal goals:

  •  short stories, persuasive speeches, serious poems with lots of feeling, funny poems, sonnets. We began with a free write of a random word chosen by one of the group from a dictionary. The word was "settled", and they amazed me by the depth and the breadth of their varied responses to that word. Next assignment: After choosing a topic, quick create a basic list of words that come to mind. Then, in a second list, find other words that hold similar meanings but are fresher, not usually used (at least by the students), etc. We'll work with comparisons next, both for the non-fiction, fiction and poetry. 
  • I had my annual check-up today, haven't seen my doctor in a year. She was kind and professional as well, made me feel good both inside and outside.
  • Wednesday was Teacher Appreciation Day, and parents made posters with wonderful words of appreciation, sent to the teachers' lounge with food!  There are great quotes about teachers and education, but a favorite is "If you think education is expensive, try ignorance."
  • My final meeting with the primary teachers was Thursday lunch. It was a good conversation, finishing our work with Georgia Heard's Finding The Heart of Non-Fiction, and a bit bitter- sweet, for one of the long-time faculty members is leaving. She is a wonderful teacher and we will miss her, her collegiality and her knowledge, the friendship too.
  • And I cannot ignore books, filled with words that do what they're supposed to do: inform, persuade, and entertain. Every day, at least one book does those things for me, to me, with me!
  • Nor can I ignore the words of our weather people: "Snow starting Sunday afternoon, into rush hour on Monday. High of 40 for Mother's Day. Wow! Guess I celebrate moisture!
Have a terrific weekend and Mother's Day to you and your families!




41 comments:

  1. I would love to be in your book group and writing group and teaching group. I am happy I am with you in SOL and Celebrate community.

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    1. I wish you were in the groups with us, Terje. What a great time. But in SOL, we are in a group and share so much as you say. Happy Mother's Day!

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  2. I agree with Terje!! What a a writing group we'd all have!!! :) Love the celebrations this week, Linda! Happy Mother's Day to you!!

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    1. Thanks Michelle, hope your weekend is good!

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  3. What a great week! And I need to read Heard's book - I know it is on my shelf upstairs. :)

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    1. It's a good book, full of specific things that are helpful, Katherine. Hope you enjoy it!

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  4. I love that you have a writing group! Is this something you do at school? I'd like to do some professional groups, but haven't started yet....

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    1. I do have an adult writing group, Michele, but the group I wrote about above is a student group in the class I'm working in. Looks like it will be a nice way to end the year with their goals!

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  5. So many great celebrations this week. I love the proverb and it is so true! I have Heard's book in my amazon cart. I keep moving it in and out, substituting something else that I have heard about. Maybe I just need to leave it in there, huh? My reading life has been nonexistent the last month. There is just so much to do this last month of school. I guess that is what summer is for! Happy Mother's Day to you!

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    1. And best wishes for a wonderful mother's day to you, too, Leigh Anne. We enjoyed the Heard book very much. She didn't 'over-talk', just shared good specific things to include about non-fiction. Yes, May is 'over-busy'. Even my evenings are filling up!

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  6. Glad you are healthy inside and out! You are surrounded with celebrations of the literate kind. Now that's a life to celebrate! Happy Mother's Day! Will this snow ever come to an end?

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    1. Thank you, Elsie. Always happy to have the doctor give me a clean bill! The weather people said last night that our latest snow on record is June 12th! I don't know if the snow will ever end. This time everyone is worried about the trees who have now leafed out. Hope it's not too much snow! Happy Mother's Day to you too!

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  7. Here's hoping your snow will melt quickly! I love the proverb! How fun to start writing groups this close to the end of your school year. I think we (online friends) should have a summer book club. How about Linda Rief's new book, Read, Write, Teach?

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    1. Oh, I just received the flyer for that book, Ramona. It does look great. I would have to wait until July, the latter part of June is taken. How does the beginning weeks of July sound to you? We could do a private FB group!

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    2. July (after the 4th) sounds perfect! I'll be in touch.

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  8. Snow? We are looking at 78 degrees today, it looks as though we will slide from winter into summer once again this year. It sounds as though you had a full and fulfilling week, Linda - much to celebrate! PS. I'd love to be in that book group with you and Ramona (and whoever else!).

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    1. Yes, snow. Supposed to wake up to a rainy day tomorrow! Hurrah for the book group possibility. I'll tell Ramona, & send an e-mail!

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  9. Linda - Happy Mother's Day to you! I love what you say here about books doing what they are supposed to do. Beautifully expressed. So pleased your appointment was a good one - good health is something we all need to celebrate.

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    1. Thank you, Carrie. Love those books! And, yes, a positive check-up is always celebrated! Hope your day tomorrow is wonderful!

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  10. I always have a hard time imagining snow at any time, but in May? really? The sun blazes here. Good to hear about all the celebrations in your life. I totally forgot to include teacher appreciation week. We had so much food! I think I gained 5 pounds.

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    1. Yes, the food! There was so much, we were all appreciating and talking about how much! Yes, May snow is not a surprise, but I do hope the trees hold up! Have a nice day tomorrow!

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  11. Linda, I appreciate how you write this post week after week. Everyday is filled with gratitude and celebration! Thank you.

    And I can't believe your forecast. I am too skittish to check our weather in New England. YIKES.

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    1. Thank you! I'm just in the habit of writing a lot, so thanks to Ruth, my life fills with those small moments each day. And yes, snow is coming, don't know if it will come your way or not. Sometimes it does...

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  12. I love every inch/word of your post. The focus on words a subject so near and dear. As is mothering, definitely a verb and an active one. A writer's group how wonderful. Gives me ideas. How do you persuade others with busy lives to partake in this work. Happy Mother's Day to you and all of those moms in your life.
    Julieanne
    PS Isn't it interesting how Teacher Appreciation and Mother's Day fall in the same week.

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    1. I do have a writers' group, Julieanne, and we do our best to meet every month, but this group I wrote about above is a student group, in the class I'm teaching in right now. As for that final comment. I don't think TA Week has been around very long. At least I don't remember it. It is interesting that whoever designated it picked close to Mother's Day. Hope you have a special one, too!

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  13. I missed your mother's poem yesterday, so thank you for linking it. I loved it! Especially the last line. SNOW is coming your way?! Oh my. Happy Mother's Day, and keep warm!

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    1. Aw, happy you liked the poem, for you and all mothers everywhere. Thanks for the wishes, and Happy Mothers' Day to you too!

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  14. The gift of words cannot be underestimated. Happy Mother's Day.

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    1. Thank you! Best wishes for a good day for you too!

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  15. "Mother is a verb"! Yes, for sure! That may be my new favorite proverb. Thanks for sharing it. I have that Georgia Heard book in my stack for PD reading this summer. I love her books but haven't gotten to that one yet. I find a lot of techniques and approaches in her work to use with my college students, and I'm sure this book will be no different. We have more snow in the forecast here as well. But I try not to complain about moisture, because we rarely have enough of that! Hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day!

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    1. Hurrah-so glad you love the proverb, Elisabeth. I thought it was great fun, too. I do think you'll find ideas from Heard's book for your classes. I wish I could visit your classes, always love hearing what you're doing. Hope you have a wonderful Mother's Day, too. Thank you!

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  16. Mom is a verb not a noun. Like this. So glad you had a great week.

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    1. Thank you, Jone. It was, and hope you did, too!

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  17. Good Lord isn't mother a verb. I've been exhausted all day. I made my children promise to do things for themselves tomorrow. I even made them practice saying 'oh no, don't worry Mommy, you just drink your tea and read your book." Here's to writing groups and mothers!

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    1. Agreed Kimberley! I hope tomorrow you receive all the minutes you need with the book and the tea! It seems that you were "mothering" very well indeed! Glad you liked the proverb!

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  18. Linda, I love the activities you're planning for your writer's workshop. I may try some of them myself. What age are your students?

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    1. Thanks Carmela, you're certainly welcome to use them. These particular students are a few 4th and mainly 5th graders.

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  19. What a great collection of celebrations. Most about people in your life. Excellent!

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    1. Thanks Crystal. Hope you had a lovely Mother's Day!

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  20. I always enjoy reading your celebrations! Like you, even when I try not to talk about books, I end up doing so because they are such big parts of my life.

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    1. Yep, I do always veer toward books, you're so right, Earl. Thanks for celebrating with me!

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Having a conversation is a good thing!