Archive for the ‘Life’ category

Time Management

June 29, 2017

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What do you do when you’ve been on vacation whooping it up and realize when you return home there is a ton of things you need to do ASAP?

Two things:  Prioritize and Downsize

1) Prioritize

Empty refrigerator? Food is the sustenance of life. Grocery shop.

No clean clothes?  Hygiene is important. Wash those clothes!

Weekend guests? If you want to keep your friends close, tasty food and an orderly house are welcoming. Beer and wine help, too.

Grass too tall? Coming from corn country, there’s a saying “Knee-high by the Fourth of July.” That doesn’t apply to grass. Time to mow the lawn.

2) Downsize

Blog? As I prepare for family and friends, this is the downsized version of my Thursday blog.

Meanwhile, celebrate America and enjoy friends and family this July Fourth.

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Art Worth Millions

May 25, 2017

On May 4th, I posted a blog about the 2017 Caldecott Medal Award winner, Radiant Child: The Story of Young Artist Jean-Michel Basquiat. You can see it here.

As a follow-up, I thought readers of this blog might be interested in hearing a bit more about Jean-Michel Basquiat. If you read my previous post, you know Basquiat’s art focused on social and political issues and resonated with a variety of people. He achieved artistic success at an early age. Unfortunately, he died of a drug overdose when he was twenty-seven, leaving behind his artistic legacy. Last Thursday, twenty-nine years after his death, Basquiat’s work, Untitledsold at Sotheby’s auction for an unprecedented amount of $110.5 million. That puts Basquiat’s work among the greatest of the great artists in the world.

“Every single line means something.” ~Jean-Michel Basquiat

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Jean-Michel Basquiat – 1982

“I don’t think about art when I’m working. I think about life.” ~Jean Michel Basquiat

Happy Holidays!

December 22, 2016

Wishing you snowflake dreams, quiet moments to ponder and reflect, and peace and happiness at this special time of the year!

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Break Out!

October 13, 2016

Creativity can only go so far in in your little writing hidey-hole. Maybe it’s time to break out! Stretch your wings, breathe the crisp fall air, and enjoy the beauty surrounding you.img_1498

Last week, I did just that. We took a trip to the Midwest to see friends and attend a wedding. It included a little history, a little culture, a little nature, and a lot of love and friendship.

A little history …

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James J. Hill:  Builder of the Great Northern Railway

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A little religious culture at the Cathedral of St. Paul …

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A little pop culture … a Prince-ly site.

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The Capital in Madison, WI

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Nature

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 Minnesota:  Land of 10,000 Lakes and big pumpkins!

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Love

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Friendship

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This is a fabulous time of the year to feed your inner self with the beauty that’s all around you. It’s a perfect way to spark creativity.

And don’t forget to take time and read!

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Sage Advise From Abraham Lincoln

July 14, 2016

Recently, I made a trip back to my hometown of Lincoln, Illinois. Having been named in honor of Abraham Lincoln, the town is filled with his memorabilia. Lincoln was a wise and witty individual who had the ability to inspire others. Below are some thought-provoking quotes from Lincoln that can be applied to our lives today.

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America will never be destroyed from the outside. If we falter and lose our freedoms, it will be because we destroyed ourselves.

I am a firm believer in the people. If given the truth, they can be depended upon to meet any national crisis. The great point is to bring them the real facts.

Those who deny freedom to others deserve it not for themselves; and under the rule of a just God, cannot long retain it.

A house divided against itself cannot stand.

The philosophy of the school room in one generation will be the philosophy of government in the next.

Upon the subject of education, not presuming to dictate any plan or system respecting it, I can only say that I view it as the most important subject which we, as a people, can be engaged in.

The better part of one’s life consists of his friendships.

Better to remain silent and be thought a fool than speak out and remove all doubt.

What kills a skunk is the publicity it gives itself.

My dream is of a place and a time where America will once again be seen as the last best hope of Earth.

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Dream the Impossible

June 16, 2016

I love the theater – especially musical theater. On Sunday, I watched the Tony Awards. I look forward to seeing what’s new in the theater and which stars are on the rise.

I grew up listening to all types of musical genres, but the stage and screen musicals were the ones I enjoyed the most. I listened to those albums over and over. I memorized the lyrics and sang my heart out. I choreographed my own dances. My secret dream was to be a Broadway star. When I was in eighth grade, I tried out for the lead in our school musical. I was told I had a sweet little voice and was given a small non-singing part. It was a nice way of saying, “Honey, you can’t sing.” Who knew? I sure didn’t! I loved musicals so much it was never an issue for me to be a background cast member where my voice was masked by the better singers.

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One of my favorite songs is “The Impossible Dream” from “Man of La Mancha.” When I first heard the lyrics, it was during those tough adolescent years. It became my theme song. It’s about doing the right thing even though others may disagree with you. It’s about having goals and overcoming obstacles to achieve your dreams. Musicals  have always been an important part of my life. Whenever possible, you can find me at the theater or enjoying a screen version of a musical. The musical “Hamilton” is on my must-see list.

I’m never going to be a Broadway star, but I still dance and sing to my favorites. I’m at the stage in my life where I don’t care who sees or hears me. I also have my secret dreams. Some of them may seem unattainable, but I charge on because I know I will eventually “reach the unreachable star.”

Dream your impossible dream!

 

 

The Cow Stops Here

June 9, 2016

June is National Dairy Month. Since our recent move to New Hampshire, I’m missing Wisconsin and all of its delicious dairy products. I’m particularly missing the Farmers’ Market around the Capital Square in Madison. They do a bang-up job of celebrating Dairy Month. Since I couldn’t be there this year, I’m reposting one of the last times I strolled around the State Capital, taking in all the delectable sights.

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Mo-o-o-ve over! June is National Dairy Month, and Saturday the cows were out – Cows on the Wisconsin State Capital Concourse, of course, of course. Cows flaunted their “Dairy aire.” Got Milk? You betcha! White milk, chocolate milk, and strawberry milk were on the menu. There were hunka hunks of cheese and mounds of squeaking cheese curds. If you missed breakfast or lunch, grilled cheese sandwiches were making the rounds. For dessert or an anytime treat, I scream, you scream we all scream for ice cream and don’t forget the overstuffed cream puffs. The cows were doing their best to please. It was a dairy day overload. Follow me and see.

First stop — cows. I had a hard time getting close to the mooers. Those little kiddos wouldn’t let me in.

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A Close-Up Look

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That’s Big

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Milk mustaches were en vogue. Got Milk?

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There were all kinds of dairy treats – good for your teeth and bones.

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Say Cheese!

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Give the Man a Cream Puff!

It was an “udderly” satisfying day. So don’t forget to celebrate National Dairy Month. Drink a glass of milk today!

Want to know more about cows and dairy products? Check these out.

The Milk Makers by Gail Gibbons (Aladdin, 1987), Cows (Animals Animals)by Renee C. Rebman (Benchmark Books, 2009), Farm Animals Cows by Cecilia Minden (Cherry Lake Pub., 2009), Cows (Animals That Live on the Farm) by JoAnn Early Macken (Weekly Reader Early Learning Library, 2009), Ice Cream:  The Full Scoop by Gail Gibbons (Holiday House, 2008)

For Fun:  A Big Cheese for the White House:  The True Tale of a Tremendous Cheddar by Candice Fleming (Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) 2004)


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