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Thank you so much for caring. Instead of an award, won't you Follow an' share your comments? I'm truly glad you are here. ~ Yaya

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Saturday, January 30, 2010

Solve-It Saturday Word Search

     I'm back!  I'm back!  That old flu can't keep me down for long.  No sirreee, Bob.  I'm ready to be done with this flu.  I do not like it.  I do not like it one little bit.

     And to celebrate my Backness, I have decided to rename the games for Saturday.  The new name is Solve-It Saturday and I'll leave the game up for a couple of days, before posting the answers.  That way, you won't be tempted to check the answers, just in case you are soooooo close and almost have that last word figured out.

     To print the game, left-click on the game and use the printer-icon at the top of your online screen.  Be sure to put the print option to Landscape so you'll get all of the words on the page, too.  If you have any problems, lemme' know and I'll try to figure it out.  Have fun and 'til the next time, keep a hug on.


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

The Answer To A Word Search

     Illness has put me way behind schedule.  Well, illness and blogger problems.  However, I am finally here to post the answer to Saturday's Word Search.  I hope you were able to find all the words.  I did search for extra words, ones that were not included in the list, but I'm still finding them and don't know if I'll list them or not.  So here are the answers.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Sunday, January 24, 2010

So Sorry. No Answers

     Last night, I was very careful to write my messages and post them.  On Word Designer, I was also careful to include the word scramble.  Apparently, I didn't stay with myself while I posted in Red Wagon Flights and Yaya's Changing World because it wasn't until late this afternoon that I realized there was no game included in those posts.  So, considering that I did not post the games until late this afternoon, I am gonna' wait until tomorrow before I post any of the answers.  Okie-dokie? I'm so sorry for the goof.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

Biltmore Estate For Game Time Saturday

     Happy Saturday!  'Course, I'm saying this at the end of the day, but I truly hope your Saturday was a good one.  I have visions of life being all Sunshine and Roses for each of you, so it would just be lovely if you were to tell me that is exactly what your life is like.  If that does not happen to be how things are going, please accept a special hug from me and I hope it helps.

     I'd like to give you a little information concerning today's game for Saturday Game Time.  Another blogger, Ramblin' Southern Woman, mentioned in a comment that her favorite place on Earth was The Biltmore Estate in Asheville, NC.  Many, many pictures on her blog.  Well, being the nosy curious creature that I am, I had to learn more, as I had never heard of The Biltmore Estate.  I know, right?  Where have I been all my life?

     Have You Ever Been There?!?  Unbelievable!  I am sooooo in love with that place and I am ready, willing and quite anxious to move in.  Wanna' see it?  Lookie here!  And there are more places where you can learn even more about it.

     So, here is a word search, using just a few of the words I gathered from the home I'd like to live in.  You are welcome to print these puzzles out to play and I hope you enjoy them.  I post the answers, tomorrow.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Friday, January 22, 2010

But what are the rules of this game?

     I don't know about you, but I am fascinated with all things pertaining to weather.  Or, maybe I should say all things pertaining to Mother Nature.  Have you ever noticed that she can be as fickle as the rest of us?

     I have a book that tells all kinds of fun and interesting tid-bits of useless information.  There is one bit of information in there that never ceases to amaze me.  Well, pretty-much all of it does, really, but I have read this one page so many times that its a wonder I don't have it memorized.

     Did you know that the most amazing temperature fluctuations ever noted were in Spearfish, SD?  Yup!  At 7:30 AM the temperature was -4°F, but just two minutes later, it had risen to 45°F.  That's an increase of 49° on the thermostat in just two minutes' time.

     Remarkable, you ask?  Ah, yes, but it gets even better.  By 9:00 AM, the temperature had risen to 54°F and at 9:27 AM it dropped back down to -4°F.  Almost exactly two hours and the thermostat stood precisely where it was to start with.  I don't think I would've wanted to be a farmer in the fields, that day.  Do you?  Our dear Mother Nature was playing games, that day, I think.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Tremors of a Nation

     You know, with the earthquakes in Haiti, I have been giving a lot of thought to some of the places where earthquakes have left their mark in America.  Of course, California and along the west coast are among the first that come to mind.  But did you know that Missouri was a major spot for earthquakes in the 1800's?

     It was in the winter of 1811-1812, actually, when the New Madrid Fault was showing its strength by raising the ground and lowering it on a regular basis by about four feet.  By some reports, the land almost seemed to have a life of its own, breathing and moving with the force of a woman, giving birth.

     And did you know that in 1886, Charleston, SC experienced an earthquake that was felt by millions of people in the eastern United States and farther, even?  From Canada to Cuba and Iowa to Bermuda, nearly a thousand miles away, the strength of that quake was felt.

     My heart truly is with all those who are struggling and heartbroken because of the devastation in Haiti.  It serves to remind me that every moment should be treasured and every breath appreciated.  Truly, the most important things in life cannot be touched, except by the heart.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Wednesday, January 20, 2010

A Dying Man's Circus

     Do you like Trivia?  I really enjoy trivia and all the different angles it takes.  Did you know that there was once a man who, while spelunking, had a boulder fall on his leg and pin him in a cave for something like three weeks?  Its true.  While some few tried to rescue him (he refused to allow his leg to be removed to save his life), many others turned the event into a circus atmosphere and sold balloons, hot dogs and souvenirs.

     I have been looking for the book that tells about this.  It would prob'ly help if I knew the exact title, but all I can remember is that it is one of the many books of trivia that I own.  I believe it is also from the Old Farmer's Almanac collection of weird facts.  I am certain that it has found a secure place to tuck away inside my personal black-hole of confusion.  Hopefully, someday I will actually find the book again and share more of the story with you.  If, in the meantime, you happen to be one of those people who has seen or owns this book, I would dearly love it if you would email me with more information.  And thank you, in advance, if you will do that.

     I would like to say that I have come across the story of a man, Floyd Collins, whose telling sounds so similar that I think it must be one and the same.  But to be really honest, I wish I could find the book I first saw the story in because, as morbid as it may sound, I was far more intrigued by the way it was told in that book.

     To be sure, it is a very sad thing that happened and my heart goes out to this man, whenever I recall the event.  It must have been horrible for his family to know that he lay dying a slow, torturous death and there was nothing they could do to help him.  There is a place in my heart that hopes to meet him in the hereafter and give him a hug, just because my heart hurts so completely for him.

     Are there things you've heard that haunt you like this story haunts me?  I am drawn to trivia like the proverbial bee to honey.  I'd love to hear of trivia you know... it really does not have to be morbid... and I'm sure I'll be sharing more of my information with you, as well.

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Tuesday, January 19, 2010

A Little Life, A Little Fiction

     I was very surprised by the reaction to last night's posts.  Thank you all for your encouraging words.  I love reading your posts and having you come to read mine.  I do hope that we can continue to visit each other and get to know each other better.  Blogging has been and continues to be a very uplifting experience for me, as I'm sure it is for you.

     I wrote an article for a newspaper, today, and before I sat down to write, I considered some of the things that I've experienced over the years.  When I asked for my good hubby-buddy's help in deciding what to write about, his input was even more intriguing and I suddenly remembered why I love to write.

    When I write, even if I happen to be writing fiction, I manage to re-live the experiences from my past.  You want volcanoes?  You've got it!  Earthquakes?  Been there.  Blizzards?  I can't tell you how many I've lived through.  How about Hurricanes?  I can tell you precisely what it feels like to live through an horrific hurricane 'cause I think I've experienced every level.

     I guess what I'm trying to say is that writing, for me, is like living the adventures.  Again, if I must, but living them, nonetheless.  On the other hand, I also have a tendency to create some of my own adventures, so it stands to reason that I was given the heart to love writing.  'Else, how in the world would I live all my made-up adventures, withing breaking, maiming or destroying every part of me that I own?

     Yup!  I really love writing; even more, now that I realize how much pain it saves me.  Ungh!  Can you just imagine?!?

     Until the next time, keep a hug on.


Monday, January 18, 2010

I hope you'll understand

     I've been stressing for awhile, now and I'd like to beg your forgiveness.  Recently, four people were kind enough to pass awards to me and I was sooooo thrilled.  I love getting awards.  I love passing them on, even more.  However, I found myself totally overwhelmed by the enormity of the task.

     You see, when all four awards were added together, I was to pass them on to nearly fifty new people.  I didn't have any problem with that.  I find that all of you are amazing writers and, if I had my way, I'd give each and every one of you awards, many times over.

     The challenge is that giving out so many awards is very time-consuming.  I would take all the time needed for passing out awards, but my fear is that I will cause others the kind of stress that I have been feeling.

       Therefore, I'd like to to thank everyone who has given me an award and say that I have decided to respectfully become an award-free blog.  In that way, I will not be contributing to anyone else's stress.  I do hope you'll understand.

     For the purpose of time, I will post this message in each of my three blogs.  Thank you for understanding.

     As always, keep a hug on.


Sunday, January 17, 2010

Answers to the Word Search

     Were you able to find all the words from the word search, last night?  I do have fun creating them.  Its nice to know that someone enjoys working them, as well.  And how about last week's puzzle?  Did you take the challenge to do the puzzle without the word list?  I did and was quite surprised at the outcome, really.  I found 105 words, without once looking at the list, nor using any of the words that were on it.  After I go over and post the answers to the other two puzzles on my other blogs, I'll be back to update this one with a list of  the words I found in this puzzle.  I think you'll be surprised, too.  I'll see you soon.
     Keep a hug on.


     Well, how'dya' do?  Here are the words I found beyond the word list.  You should try it that way.  Its actually a ot of fun and makes you think.  Same challenge for next week?  Okie-dokie, then.  Now, I'm headed back to bed.  This flu is still not fun.

     Seen you next time.  Keep two hugs on.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Game Time Saturday #3

     Its that time again; Game Time Saturday.  So here is a fresh Word Search Puzzle to test your skills.  How do you think you'll do?  I'll see you tomorrow with the answers.  And don't forget to make an extra copy so you can use one to just circle any words you see.  Did you do last week's puzzle both ways?  I'll tell you tomorrow how many unrelated words I found.

     Until tomorrow, then, keep a hug on.


Escapades With Flu

     Yaya sleeps fitfully, dreaming that she is making hot chicken soup for her pals, Just Joany and Wordy.  Flu is not a fun place to live and she tries to remember that she is not the only one suffering.  Feverish and out of sorts, she reaches for the chocolate pudding to flavor the chicken soup.  Something tells her this is wrong, but she can't seem to figure out why.  Chocolate is always in season, she tells herself.

     Still dreaming, she thinks she is carrying two huge pots of soup, one to Wordy and one to Joany, across the yard.  Suddenly, she is awakened by the sound of her name being called.  She looks around and realizes that she has been dreaming.

     Dismissing the sound as part of the dream, she rolls over to go back to sleep.  Must get plenty of rest if she wants to get well.  Again, she hears her name and gets up to investigate.  Outside, she sees Joany, lying in the snow and hurries to rescue her.

     Joany tells Yaya about Wordy's plight and the two of them work together to scoop up the blob that is their friend, Wordy.  It is not easy.  Finally, three personalities manage to work their way back into Yaya's house to sit in front of the fire and hope that none of them gets sicker as a result of their middle-of-the-night escapade. 

     Meanwhile, hubby-buddy sleeps on, struggling with his own flu symptoms.  Poor hubby-buddy.

     Stay well and keep a hug on.


Thursday, January 14, 2010

Puckered For Action

     I am puckered and ready for a kiss.  My good hubby-buddy had better look out.  I am gonna' share with him.  I am SOOOOO gonna' share this miserable flu with him.  Now, where is he?  He can run, but he cannot hide.  This may be a big house, but its not that big.  Even if he hides in the scary, creepy basement, I could find him if I wanted to.  Go down there.  In the scary, creepy basement.  If I wanted to.  Go down there, I mean.  But I don't.  Its scary and creepy.  Duh!

     But he can't stay down there forever.  And I'm ready.  With a kiss.  I'm puckered and ready to share... back.  He gave it to me and I MUST give it back.  grrrr

     I'll let you know when I find him.  Until then, keep a hug on.


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Did he hafta' share?

     My good husband is such a generous person.  Its one of the things I love about him... usually.  He got the flu.  He shared.  I do not like this particular generous attitude of his.  He's not so funny.

     Now, I am going to bed.  mmmmmmm

     Stay well and keep a hug on.


Tuesday, January 12, 2010

An Elephant In The House

     Have you read The Magician's Elephant by Kate DiCamillo?  My good husband and I watched the interview with Kate, awhile back, and I determined to read the book.  I'm glad I did.  I thoroughly enjoyed it.  Found the plausibility of an elephant crashing through the roof of a building very strange, at first.  As I read, though, and the different parts of the story began to fall into place, it was amazing how willing I was to believe that exactly that had happened.  That an elephant had, in fact, come crashing through the roof and all of the amazing things that followed were natural results of such an occurrence.

     Will I read this book again?  I'm sure I will.  Will I be surprised by how things turn out?  You bet!  Kate DiCamillo has so cleverly weaved a tale of intrigue and fantasy that I'm sure this is a story that will be calling for me to return again and again.  If you enjoy getting lost in a story, I hope you'll take the time to lose yourself in this one, The Magician's Elephant.  Its worth the time and belief in the impossible to completely lose yourself in this one.  Great read!

     Keep a hug on.


Its a regular heat wave

     Tonight I was gonna' share some awards I received, but I realized that its gonna' take a little while to really do the awards the proper justice.  And since I have articles and puzzles that need to be turned in tomorrow so they can be published on Wednesday, I was thinking that you might not mind if I waited another day to tell you about my wonderful awards.  Okie-dokie?  Aaaaaaaaawww.  See?  I just knew you could identify with a writer's deadlines.  Thaaaaaaaanks.

     The weather was 29° outside, today.  Too warm for almost everyone.  My good husband and I went off to the store and the school library in shirtsleeves.  Long shirtsleeves, but still...  I don't recall seeing anyone else wearing a jacket while we were out, either.  You know its been a mite too cold when the weather warms up to a whopping 29° and people start running around in their shirtsleeves.

     So how's the weather where you are?  Are you rakin' leaves, yet?

     Until another heat wave, keep a hug on.


Monday, January 11, 2010

Answer and a New Challenge!

     So my New Year's Resolution, of sorts, was to post each nigtht before midnight.  I don't think I've ever actually made a resolution around this time of year, before.  Last night, I missed, but the way I see it, that's only a miss-step (how'd'ya' spell that, anyway?).  When I was little, there was lots of talk about people who would backslide and then, recover.  Voila!  Here I am... recovering!  Tonight, after missing the deadline last night, I will be back to post before midnight.

     And now, you'd like the answers to Saturday's Word Search, wouldn't you?  Oh, before I post the answers, I hafta' tell you something.  My friend, PJ, has suggested a really fun way to do a word search and I, for one, am gonna' try it on accounta' I think it is one coooooool new way to play this game.  To quote PJ, "AND... I totally ROCK at this! TOTALLY! This has my name written all over it!

Hey, did you ever take one of these, not use the word list and just start circling words? You find extra words that way....Just sayin.... "
     So you may want to make two copies of the game so you can play one round without the word list and one round, without.  I wonder who will find the most words?  ahem, the challenge is ON!  How many words did you find, without using the word list?  Next Saturday, I will post how many words I found.  Will you do the same?
     Now, here are the answers for the game with the word list.  And 'til tomorrow, keep a hug on.

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Game For Saturday

     Well, for awhile, I got away from posting games, but Game Time Saturday is back, again.  Each week, I will post a word game on Saturday evening and the correct answers for that game on Sunday evening.  I do hope you enjoy playing these games as much as I enjoy creating them.  I haven't figured out, yet, how to make them so you can play online, but I'm working on it.  For now, you can print the game out by right-clicking and choosing Print Picture.  And if you'd like more games, go to my other blogs here and here.
     Have fun and keep a hug on.


Friday, January 8, 2010

Am I Normal?

     I like to read.  Do you like to read?  If I were to make a guess at how many books I've read in my life, I would prob'ly hafta' say at least two or maybe even, three.  Nah!  I really couldn't begin to make a guess, since I've read nearly every book I own and pretty-much all those I've given away.  There are some 2500 to 3,000 books that I own and at least that many, twice-over that I've sent to new homes.  Besides, my name is indelibly printed on many records in many libraries throughout our great country, so rather than guessing, I'll let you do the math.

     Having said alla' that, I've gotta' follow through by sharing what I believe are some of the best hours of my life.  Of course, Janette Oke and I have become quite well-acquainted through her amazing story-telling abilities.  Well, that is to say, she is deeply-imbedded in my heart.  There's just the slightest chance that she may have never heard of me, though.  Hmmmm.  I can't imagine why someone of such talent wouldn't have heard of me, of course, but you never know.

     A number of writer's who have contributed to the Christian Romance Market have shared my life and received emotional fanfare as a result.  I wish I had the time to name all of them, but I'm afraid you would be reading clear into next week and beyond, if I tried.  Janette Oke was the one who introduced me to that market, so naturally, I have read nearly all of her books more than once.  I've also read many other authors' books more than once.  When I find a book I like, I tend to wear it out.  There are some books I have had to replace a couple of times.  I'd much rather read than eat.

     Actually, I don't read books written for adults very often.  That is, unless you count Reference Books.  Those, I devour.  Most of my reading time is spent with picture books and those written for the under-twelve age group.  Of course, if you've been here before, you've heard me talk about the humor that is Junie B. Jones.  Perhaps you've heard of her mother, writer, creator?  If you want to laugh until you cry, read some of the books about that little Kindergartner.  My good husband and I have read a couple of her books and spent a good while together, laughing ourselves silly.  Did I mention that we're too poor for dates, these days?

     One of the authors whose books I never tire of is Barbara Brooks Wallace.  I often say I don't care for mystery, but this lady has captured me as a lifetime follower.  Of course, she writes for the older-younger set, but you know, they're still a very enjoyable read for many adults I know.  Books such as Peppermints In The Parlor seem to have enough of the old Nancy Drew mystery with a splash of Alfred Hitchcock thrown in that I keep returning, as do several other adults I know.

     Since it is not my purpose to make this post terribly long, I'd just like to leave you with the idea that if you have limited yourself to adult reading, especially mystery or blood, guts and gore, I think you've short-changed yourself.  Step out and see what some of the kids are reading.  You just may be glad you did.  Then, again, maybe I've just never grown up.  Whaddya' think?  I hope I'll see you in the next kids' book.  Until then, keep a hug on.


Thursday, January 7, 2010

Is there no limit to the joy?

     Last night, I promised to share my good news with you.  Lookie!  Lookie!  Mommy Tantrums has given me a pretty award... with CUPCAKES!  I loove cupcakes.  It is a Happy 101 Award.  And all I gotta' do is tell you ten things that make me happy and then, share my award with ten others.  Don't you just loooove Bloggie World?

     Now, let me think.  Is there anything in this entire world that makes me happy?  hmmmm.  This could really tax my brain.  haha.  Actually, lots and lots of things make me happy.  Like, for instance, bubbles.  Don't you just adooore bubbles?  How could anyone not be happy with bubbles around?

     I also get a particular thrill over air.  I find it so much easier to make it through my day when I have air.  Don't you?

     When there are children around, I often break into giggles, so I guess that would classify as something that makes me happy.  And when its my grandies, well, we all giggle.

     Water, for sure!  I am so happy that I can have water.  'Else, how could I wash my hands?  And I would have to eat my food with icky hands.  Eeeeeeewww!  So, water for clean hands.

     Chocolate Chip Ice Cream.  Oh, and Pecan Praline, too.  Did I mention that Chocolate Cherry Ice Cream REALLY brings a smile to my face?  Yeah, pretty-much any kind of ice cream.  Well, not licorice.  And not mint.  But I like all the others, pro'lly.

     Getting published, so if any of you are agents, don't hesitate to interrupt me here.  I'm more than happy to share my work with you.  :-)

     Getting my own home would really make me happy, so if any of you happen to know where my home is... you know.  I'm just sayin'.

     Knowing that you are here, reading my words.  Ain't it great having Bloggy Friends?

     Knowing that tomorrow I will prob'ly know more than I know today 'cause I love learning new things.

     And the ultimate happiness in my world is all of my family and friends together, watching some great kids' movies that have been created from books I wrote, having my grandies snuggling close and all of us eating all the ice cream and cookies we want.

     Now, I am so thrilled to be able to share this award with these wunnerful people:

     I hope you have had as much fun as I have with my award.  Please go and check out all these great sites, including Mommy Tantrums, whom I sooooo appreciate for giving me such a pretty award.  There is fun to be found.  'Til tomorrow's fun, keep a hug on.


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

In Flight

     Welcome back.  I'm so glad you stayed for the whole flight.  If you arrived today and don't know what's about to happen, you may want to check out the details, here: Flying and writing and dancing

     Now, before we get started, I'd just like to make sure that everyone is comfy and cozy.  Do you each have your snack of choice?  And how about the children?  I know there are a variety of children, including offspring and a furry assortment, as well.  I trust you've taken advantage of the seating so all the children can look out the window while we fly?  Alrighty, then.  Let's check out why I am so thrilled to be a writer.  And with that... weeeeee're OFF!!!  Please keep your hands inside at all times.

     A couple of days ago, I had the very pleasant experience of being interviewed and I'm here to tell you, I didn't know what to expect.  For starters, I was pretty sure I would throw up during the process and never be invited back again.  My next thought was that I might possibly cause both of us to never want to be involved in anything even remotely akin to an interview, again.  To say I was nervous might give you a slight hint as to my overall emotions.

     However, if you will look out your window, you'll notice that we are now flying directly over the home of Claudsy's Blog, where I was treated to a most enjoyable time.  Claudsy was very professional and managed to help me through this, my first interview, as a writer.  Read what a gracious hostess Claudsy was and learn of not only my own life as a writer, but other writers, as well.  If you aspire to be published, may I suggest you visit Claudsy's Blog often and avail yourself of some of the fine points that have brought her to the success she has achieved as a writer.  You won't be sorry you did.

     Oh, and I forgot to mention that, today, Claudsy interviewed someone whom I admire very much, Jan Fields.  Jan is not only a very successful author, but is an Instructor at the Institute of Children's Literature.  Again, if you have not checked out this fine school and you wish to be published, be sure to look into it.  I am a student, so I am speaking from experience.  As well as writing and teaching, it may interest you to know that Jan is also the moderator at the Children's Writer's Retreat where I have found many other writers and the encouragement to become confident and move forward in my writing career.  I do hope you will take the time to visit there, also.

     Before returning to Yaya's Changing World, I thought you might all like to take a bit of a detour and see our Big Blue Planet from space.  Of course, right now, a great portion of our planet is covered in white, so the effect may not be quite as spectacular as, say, in the fall.  Still, I think our home is quite lovely, don't you?

     I do hope you have all enjoyed our trip, today.  How was your first flight in a Little Red Wagon?  And were you as thrilled with your first Whirly-Floops and Back-Sassy Bounces as I was, the first time I flew?  Be sure to head on over to the Red Wagon Flights and join in the fun over there.  Or, maybe you'd like to fly with me while I return the Little Red Wagon?

     Thank you all for coming to Yaya's Changing World and helping me to celebrate my very first interview as a professional author.  I do hope you will return to Yaya's Changing World often and join me in other adventures.  Tomorrow, I'll be sharing my good news from Mommy Tantrums.  Hope you'll be here.  Until then, be sure to keep a hug on.


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Flying and writing and dancing

     ::Yaya dances merrily, 'round and 'round, finding it difficult to sit still with so much excitement in her life::

     I LOVE being a writer!  Don't you just LOVE being a writer?  You can be who you want to be {I enjoy being short people, under four feet tall, myself}, do what you want to do {do you have any idea how much candy can be consumed without ever gaining an ounce?} and go where you want to go {I'm working on three different novels, at the moment and each one has allowed me freedom like you would not BELIEVE!}.  Yup!  This whole writing world is just FILLED with Wonder and Awe.

     Wanna' know what I did today?  C'mon!  I'll show you...

     Please, everyone, take a seat in the Little Red Wagon and make yourselves comfy.  There's plenty of room, so be sure to introduce yourself to your neighbor and let's all get better acquainted.  Now, is everybody ready?  By the way, don't you just adoooore my Little Red Wagon?  I borrowed it from my other blog, Red Wagon Flights, so no one would be left behind.

     Oh, hello, there.  I see you brought your little furry children.  I'm so glad.  There are seats so they can also look out the windows while we fly.  And don't forget the snacks.  This is a very magical Little Red Wagon.  It expands to hold as many people as would like to come along and the snacks just magically appear when you want them; hot or cold, it makes no difference.

     Now, since this is already becoming rather a long post, I'm going to schedule the rest of the trip for tomorrow.  You are gonna' LOVE the flight, believe me.  We will be doing Whirly-Floops and Back-Sassy Bounces, among other things, so I truly hope you'll stay in the Little Red Wagon for tomorrow's flight, too.

     Until we are airborne tomorrow, keep a hug on.


Monday, January 4, 2010

A chain is only as strong as its weakest link

     Okay, stop right where you are.  Close your eyes.  Now, open your eyes and look straight ahead.  What do you see?  Oh!  I forgot to say that you should choose an area about two feet square... then, tell me what you see.  If you see a blank wall, that's okay, but if you see several things within that two foot square, it works even better.

     Here's the thing: within that small space, have you ever considered how many people contributed to your comfort or interest?  Is there a lamp or a light of some kind?  Ah!  Someone discovered electricity.  Do you know who?  If you answered Ben Franklin, think again.  Yes, our friend, Ben, did realize that there was a connection between lightning and electricity, but there's a rumor that the man who actually built the first electric battery was Alessandro Volto.  That battery, it is said, was the real break-through in the discovery of electricity.  hmmmm.  Could it be?  Is there more to this than meets the eye?

     Looking again into your two-foot square, do you happen to notice if someone has painted some portion of it?  This thought made me wonder who invented paint.  So, I went searching.  hmmmm.  I know that Tom Sawyer incorporated the help of his friends to white-wash the fence, but was that the same as painting?  I actually do not think it was... quite, although that's just my opinion.  But if you look back through history, you will find various ways that some form of painting was done by different cultures.  Take, for instance, the Egyptians.  They were the dudes with the sphinxes and the pyramids, right?  There ya' go!  They slapped all kinds of Paint-ey things all over the insides of the pyramids.  Scratched out designs and threw Paint-ish into some of the designs.  Were they painting?  I guess they were, so my earlier opinion just changed.

     As the ages followed and each generation tried something new, improvements were made and today we benefit from many different people and cultures who all contributed in one way or another.  Whoever the Top Dog of paint is today cannot deny the involvement others had before we arrived at the worlds of living color we have available to us, today.

     Moving on, what else do you see?  Is there some kind of paper within your view?  Thank you, Ts'ai-Lun of Lei-Yang in China.  Or, was it the Egyptians and their papyrus?  Man, those dudes really seemed to get around, didn't they?  Wait a minute!  What of this guy, Charles Fenerty, of Halifax?  And where do those two Englishmen come in?  What were their names, again?  Healey and Allen?  Yeah, that's them.  They all played a part in the paper-making process.  Now, I can take my pretty little sticky-note and stick it to my pretty little stationary and put it in my secure envelope without having to remember that I need to make some paper before I can write a letter.

     The point I'm trying to make is that no matter where you choose to look, especially in a city or town, if you take the time to notice, you will have reason to realize that we stand on the shoulders of those who came before.  Every society and every generation builds on what those from the past have contributed.  Even the fields are filled with seeds designed for better yield.  No man is an island and the sooner we realize that, the better our progress will be.

     Ben Franklin did not, alone, discover the benefits of electricity.  It is my firm belief that neither did his predecessor, Alessandro Volto.  If you will notice, a good many ideas come from something that someone else has said or done.  Remember Tabitha Babbitt from yesterday's post?  Great inventor, right?  She didn't do it alone.  She was watching two men from her community when she was struck with an idea and Voila!  Life just got easier.

     So the next time you begin to feel that no one cares about you, take a look around and notice some of the things that make your life easier.  Someone, somewhere must have cared a whole awful lot because my life has all kinds of Easy in it.  How 'bout yours?

     Until tomorrow, keep a hug on.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Spinning Wheel or Circular Saw?

     What do a spinning wheel and a saw have in common?  Give up?  Alright, then, have you ever heard of Tabitha Babbitt?  She was a very intelligent lady whom I would love to find in my ancestral line.   Since she was a member of the Shaker Religion, its not likely that I'll be able to trace my roots back to her.  You see, the Shakers believed in celibacy.  So you might say, they actually bred themselves out of existence, although I think the religion has been re-established.

     But that's a story for another day.  Today, I'd like to tell you about Tabitha Babbitt.  Evidently, all the energy she preserved by not having children gave her plenty of time to think.  And think, she did.  In fact, some of the things she thought about have been very beneficial to the world.  For instance, it was dear Tabitha who actually invented the circular saw.

     It is said that she also invented the method for making nails from a rod of iron, although I have had little time to research this and cannot be sure that it is correct.  And when she died, she was supposedly in the process of inventing false teeth.  Could it be?

     The story I first heard about Tabitha's invention of the circular saw was that she was watching two of the men of her community, one on the roof and the other down below, each working one end of a two-man saw.  Realizing that half the motion from such activity was lost, she began to toy with the idea of a round piece of notched metal, instead.  She wrapped the metal around the wheel of her spinning wheel, spun the it and tried it on a shingle. When it worked, she shared her idea.

     That's the way I first heard it.  Is it true?  At least some of it is.  I am still reseaerching, as I find the entire story quite intriguing.  Do you ever feel the need to find out more when faced with stories like this?  This is a very interesting legend, if you ask me.  In fact, off and on, I have searched for this information for several years.  One day, I may just take the time to do some serious investigation.  In the meantime, don't take my word for it.  Why don't you find out for yourself?

     And keep a hug on,

Saturday, January 2, 2010

A Very Large Mouse In The House

     I have a mouse in my office.  Yup!  He is very large and very persistent.  I can't get rid of him.  Truth be told, I don't really want to get rid of him.  I've grown kind of accustomed to having him around.  Some things are like that. 

     In my office, I keep various snack foods.  This is necessary because I have attacks of hunger that quickly make me sick, if I don't do something to overcome the hunger.  It's all part of the medical mystery that is me.  The thing is, my hunger attacks do not happen often, but since I sometimes stay up all night, I need to have the food nearby.  I am not keen on walking all the way downstairs.  In the dark.  Alone.  Besides, taking that trip all. the. way. down those stairs. in the dark. alone. is sometimes more than said hunger can deal with and I have dizzy spells.  All this was said just to emphasize the need for me to have food readily available.

     Now, imagine if you can, the boldness of my mouse as he enters, day or night, and sets his sights on one of the tasty morsels I have nearby.  With daring confidence, my mouse thinks nothing of opening a jar or digging in a canister to take whatever delectable treat he chooses.  Can I really reject such nerve?  Not I.  In fact, I find this to be a very charming creature, indeed.  My midnight snacking isn't nearly as appealing as my friend's is.  So I continue to put out more snacks than I really need, looking forward to the next raid.

     Last night, as my good husband wandered into my office, eyes bright and nose twitching ever so slightly, I commented that he was as bad as a mouse when he comes searching for snacks.  As mice go, I think I like my mouse best of all.  How many women can say they are married to a mouse?  Well, he's certainly not a mouse in other ways, but like Walt Disney's creation, he does keep me entertained.

     Until the next episode, be sure to keep a hug on.


Friday, January 1, 2010

Second Stop

     In my newest effort to gain control of my time and my life, I suddenly decided a few minutes ago that I should try and post my messages before midnight, each night.  I started here at 11:46:28 PM.  I don't know if it can be done in such a very few minutes, but I think we are about to find out.  This is a totally new concept for me; getting something done on such a short schedule.  Well, actually, that's not quite true.  Living on no schedule means getting everything done on a much shorter schedule.

     It is now 11:52:51 PM.  Can we do it?  Let's find out.  See you at the next blog.  Keep a hug on.


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