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I wonder why the writing prompts for kids are more interesting to me than the ones for adults? I think the ones for adults are too involved, write too much of the story for you, maybe. Anyhow, I don’t have a favorite childhood toy, but I will tell you about some of my dolls. They were so important to me. I was a serial monogamist with dolls.

There was Baby Tender Love, Chrissie (with the blonde hair that grew!). My first doll was Thumbelina, which I sort of thought was because I sucked my thumb. She was a little doll, half the size of Baby Tender Love. Baby Tender Love had a real mouth to pretend feed.

Thumbelina might have had a pull string in her back that made her do something, but I don’t remember what. Or that may have been another doll. I remember mostly her size (small like me) and her beautiful dress, which I loved. Also, she had a soft stuffed fabric body, not plastic like Baby Tender Love, who I obviously remember better! It was a rust colored corduroy. I can feel it right now. I rubbed the heck out of that corduroy. She was quiet and sweet and really seemed to have a personality. I had a huge imagination. She may have been a hand me down, because I remember she seemed a little grimy. Probably from me carrying her everywhere! And maybe my sisters before me.

Once my Uncle David (who is 71 today!) was stationed in Korea after he graduated NC State, and he sent my sisters and me this beautiful Korean doll. She was gorgeous. I think I’ve written about her before. She was about 3 feet tall, and her elaborate clothes seemed like silk and she had a silk-covered china doll face. And I remember sequins. It was exquisite. I wish I could tell you more details about the doll. I don’t remember details well at all.

Anyhow, my sisters and I literally loved that doll to death. She became a ragged toy after we were finished with her. At the time we were probably 5, 7 and 9. Each one of us loved her. To death. RIP, Korean Doll.

Let’s see-I may have a pic, because I think I told this story before. I think we were about 4, 6 & 8. I’m on the left. I always felt guilty that we didn’t take better care of this special doll. Which seeing my age is a little ridic.

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Reading this poem, which I ran upon when I wanted to read or say something about how freaking cold it became today! This poem made me think of Leaves of Grass for which I have thought uncharitably about on Walt Whitman’s behalf for years. It was so flowery sounding to me.

However, I believe I have not given Leaves of Grass its proper review. I haven’t read much of it. I seriously laughed at times because it sounded so silly to me. I’m sure I need to take another look.

Meanwhile, I did read this lovely Keats poem about the fall. I found the writing about nature very pleasant. Almost visceral in its visuality, or sensualtiy, I think. What do you think?

Lastly, has the word twitter in it! A bit uncommon!

Found here.

To Autumn

John Keats1795 – 1821

Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness, 
  Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless 
  With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees, 
  And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core; 
    To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells 
  With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees, 
Until they think warm days will never cease,
    For summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store? 
  Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor, 
  Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap’d furrow sound asleep, 
  Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
    Spares the next swath and all its twined flowers:
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep 
  Steady thy laden head across a brook; 
  Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
    Thou watchest the last oozings, hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they? 
  Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,--
While barred clouds bloom the soft-dying day, 
  And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn 
  Among the river sallows, borne aloft
    Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies; 
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn; 
  Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
  The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft, 
    And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.

“Write about an intense game of Scrabble that takes a turn for the worse.” –Writing Prompt from Mama Kat.

I picked this prompt because I did have a Scrabble game with Tim early in our relationship that went awry. He kept using all 7 tiles, which I thought was virtually impossible. I was furious! It was so funny. I didn’t realize at the time that it really is quite possible to use all seven letters. I know not why I didn’t think that was so.  Once I realized this, I started having games where I used all 7 tiles. It’s a 50 point bonus, you know. That’s a lot! Or maybe 100. Can’t remember.

I learned an important lesson here. I’ve always ascribed to believing anything can happen. It isn’t hard to convince me something great will happen. Here, once I knew that it wasn’t that difficult to use all 7 letters, I was able to do that on a regular basis. In all my years of Scrabble before, I had never used all 7 letters.

Granted, Scrabble wasn’t my first game choice. I like card games–spades and hearts. I used to love Backgammon, played it constantly, but I’m not sure I could set the board up properly now. The kids got me to play Cards Agains Humanity and it was hilarious.

Someone I knew was talking about blogging today and it made me want to blog. It’s been a long time. I would love to write poetry again. Or maybe just take a writing class. I like this one that’s more of a diary class, really, but I love his prompts. It’s been years since I took it.

Let me leave you with a pic–hopefully it will work properly. It’s been so long since I blogged the format has changed a bit.

I doodled my name!

I doodled my name!

So, here is something I think we may be able to do to effect change. Thoughts?

Nice post about #RVA

Rufus' Food and Spirits Guide

0086 Flights of fancy at Strangeways

By Katherine

We headed back east last month for a family wedding and had three hours to kill before meeting up with family. We like to make the most of our time.

We started with a trip to Blue Bee Cider where some recipes came from the Virginia Historical Society and are almost as old as the country. (But not as old as Virginia, which by American standards is ancient.) We each had a flight and were impressed with the uniqueness of the offerings. We brought home a Mill Brace Bramble, a rose cider and a nice dessert cider called the Harvest ration. Blue Bee Cider bills itself as the state’s “first urban cidery” and is in downtown Richmond’s Old Manchester district near the James River.” Grab a late or early (we won’t judge) lunch around the corner at Camden’s Dogtown Market. Order the…

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Andrew Solomon’s ‘The Noonday Demon-An Atlas of Depression,’ which won a National Book Award in 2003.  Hadn’t read anything self-helpish in awhile, but the dense Grey Cloud has been with me for a month or so, and I thought it might help, and assumed it would be well written.

Sarah Manguso’s ‘The Guardians’ is a memoir about her grief process after her friend dies unexpectedly.  Since I’m kind of a student of Grief I thought it would be interesting and informative.  It appears to be.  We shall see.

Yesterday I got a book that the author contacted me about on Twitter and I was so disappointed.  I thought it was nonfiction and it was not.  I’m not wanting to read it but hopefully I will pick it up.

So, on to a little reading!

Last night I read this book.  It is the first novel of a writer named Jan Ellison.  She didn’t ask me to review it, but I enjoyed it so much I wanted to tell you about it.  It is a suspense novel, but mostly it is a novel about love, the nature of love, how fluid it is.  The book was incredibly moving.  I read this review at The Rumpus.  I wasn’t expecting the book to be as well written as it was, mainly because it is a first novel and I didn’t know of the author.  However, when I researched a bit I found out she is a very accomplished writer.  Her first story won the O. Henry prize!

I mentioned the book was moving.  I could feel how much this mother loved her children, and others in her life.  It is written in the form of a letter to her son, which is unusual, but didn’t take anything away from my enjoyment.  I think it was more enjoyable because her first person made it so relatable.  I could have been that young girl, and middle-aged Mom.  It spans the course of about 20 years.  She is about 8 years younger than me, but close enough in age for me to relate to what the world was like during the times she writes about.

I actually read it through the night, and was too lazy to go downstairs to get a highlighter, but there were quotes in the book that I wanted to remember and reflect upon, so I dog eared many pages.  Also, I read and enjoyed a well known and successful contemporary novel last week.  Since I don’t read a lot of fiction, the contrasts stood out, in terms of how well the book was written, how fleshed-out the characters were.  I sure didn’t feel like tweeting and blogging about it after I finished it, although I enjoyed it.

Love, love, love.  Yes, it is about family, secrets, trust.  But it is mostly about love.  To me, anyway.  If you are a woman, you probably have felt the rush of a risky relationship, and how it makes you feel about yourself.  There was so much introspection in this book.  I highly recommend it.