Sunday, October 29, 2006

You might be a famous artist one day. . .

I am so impressed with the freestyle of some of my 4 year old students in my preschool classroom this year! I got so excited about some of them that I had to photograph their paintings.

Here they are. . .I think they speak for themselves. I think I will give them large mural paper and see what they do individually next time.

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

Photobucket - Video and Image Hosting

I hope their parents framed them.

Saturday, October 28, 2006

Bells . . .

What is your response when someone says the word "bells?"

I think sometimes it depends on the season. "Jingle Bells" is definitely a popular song for fall and winter from Thanksgiving through the Christmas season. . .It is a song for young and old alike. Does that make it an all generational song?

I remember learning it at an early age because others sang it in my family. BUT when I think about the song, it is the words of "dashing through the snow" that bring me the best memories. . . Sleigh Hill in Pocatello, Idaho; tobogganing down the apple orchard at St Gertrude's Academy in high school --in the panhandle of Idaho; the blizzard in eastern upstate New York in 71 . Yes, sleigh bells are one thing that comes to my mind when someone says "bells."

Wedding bells might be a close tie for first place in most people's lives. . . my marriage only lasted ten years but I will never forget that special day. I still have the beautiful white linen A-line dress. . . heavy lace on the edges of the sleeves with a linen bow to complete it. I look at it today and wonder how I ever fit into that tiny dress. I guess the best memory from that dress/those bells are trifold. . . my three children.

There are other bells. . . bells for church services; bells on doors that alerts the shopowner to someone's presence; school bells; and others that I have probably forgotten at the moment.

The bells I want to write about to end this essay are bell choir bells. Our church purchased their first octave of bells through member donations. For years now, they have found a way to get more octaves and now we also have several octaves of chimes to play alongside the bells. Most of us that donate our time to this service aren't professional musicians but we enjoy playing and trying. Since we are all volunteers, sometimes members of our group don't take it as seriously as we should and don't show up for practice. We were supposed to play chimes this Sunday but it got cancelled because we aren't ready because of the missing members. That announcement was melancholy to me. . . I was ready to play and yet, know some of the newer members aren't . . . so maybe it is a blessing in disguise. Oh well, something to look forward to the next time.

I made a small banner for our bell playing during Easter time. I am seriously thinking of making one for Christmas season. We also have one that has ribbons hanging from the bottom with bells hanging from each ribbon. I only made the lettering and arranged it for that one. Making banners is another hobby I have--many of our church banners were partially made by me.

We will be participating in the Bell Concert in Medford. Oregon in May. It is the last one they are sponsoring so it will leave melancholy memories. We will once again get to play with other bell choirs and be directed by a very talented musician/director. We will get to take some classes and have a nice lunch together. It will end with a concert for the whole town on Sunday afternoon. Yes, bells are a part of my life and I am glad I had the opportunity to participate.


Monday, October 23, 2006

What in the hell do you write about when. . .

you don't know what to write?

I don't even know why I am here writing this. . . but I have a few wild guesses. . .

1.)I don't want to clean my messy house.
2.)There isn't anything worth reading at Tnet tonight.
3.)It's too early to go to bed.
4.)I can't see well enough to read my new book. (Eyes hurt.)
5.)I love to procrastinate.
6.)I love to write.

Growing up, I had 40 pen pals of all ages. (Good thing that stamps were only 3 cents apiece and that I babysat for a family of 8 kids for 25 cents an hour!) We wrote back and forth regularly. Some of my pen pals were adults. Looking back, I have no idea why adults would write to a ten year old kid. . . but those were the good ole days and people did stuff like that. Just because.

I remember when one pen pal died. . . she was 18 and I was 10. It taught me how precious life is. It was a neat time to live and to be pen pals with others who enjoyed writing. I saved those letters for so many years. I don't know what happened to them after I went away to boarding school during high school. I would give anything to be able to re-read them now. I wonder if they saved any of mine?

That makes me sad for my grandchildren. . . they never experienced the pleasure of writing letters to friends they never met in person. I am sure that they would scoff at Grandma and think I was a little crazy (OK . . . a whole lot crazy) for hanging on to these memories. After all, I never even met one of the 40 pen pals in person. Not a single one.

Yet, in my heart, I knew each and everyone as if they lived next door. Tonight, I am glad they didn't . . . as I might never have gotten to KNOW them like I did writing letters. If I could wish one thing for every child on this earth, I would wish they could have a pen pal. Thanks, God, for the memory!

Sunday, October 15, 2006

It's Been Awhile . . .

A couple weeks ago, I thought I would never get to write in my blog again. I went to the emergency room with such intense pain that I thought I was going to die then and there. After spending 7 hours going through all kinds of tests, they could not find anything the matter with me and referred me to a clinic if I felt the pain again. . . well, my experience with the clinic is so unmentionable that I refuse to dwell on it. I ended up going back to the emergency room the following Tuesday after I was there on a Saturday.

I used to think the world of doctors. . . but with all their expertise, they could not figure out what is the matter with me. Not even after another ten hours there. I can't believe I walked out of that hospital and caught the bus home after ten more hours of tests and all that I had gone through. I left with 10,000 dollars in bills. . .

Well, a few days later I made an appointment with a clinic and now am on a beta blocker for a month. I hate taking pills twice a day. To top that off, three days before I got this prescription, I had such bad headaches that I started taking Advil three times a day just to get through it so I could teach preschool. Really felt like a junkie. In the past month, I have taken more prescribed meds and over the counter pain relievers than during my entire life. . .and I'm old! I am not a pill taker. Rather, I WAS not. . . (I am a drug addict . . . or should be at this rate.)

I have been trying to clean and sort things in case I should die in the near future. I have so much to do as so much got neglected when I was doubling over in sharp shooting pain last month. Maybe I will never get caught up -- I guess you could call that "leaving a legacy for my children." Ü No wonder my daughter doesn't want any contact with me.

They are not going to appreciate going through my collections of stuff. I save everything just in case I might need it. Many times that has come in handy. Anyway, there is the possibility that I could recover from whatever it was and live to be 100 so I will have to sort all my "junk" after all. Things could be worse, I guess. I don't know how but . . .