Monthly Archives: February 2015

All 737 Are Hers


In light of Tina’s sometime aversion to putting pencil to paper (unless she’s drawing), I choose my words carefully. Would she like to enter a story contest? The librarian says I can type it if all the ideas are hers.

Absolutely! She shows me two that are already underway. The one about a dog has some writing, courtesy of the neighbour girl who served as a scribe, and the one about a cat has some exciting illustrations. Tina’s proud of her surprise picture, and I think I see the influence of some of the excellent picture books she’s enjoyed.

Armed with supper and fuelled with enthusiasm, she talks while I type. Only infrequently does she ask me what I think happens next, to which I answer, “I don’t know.”

Not a problem. The story starts out as an archetypal “Animal Finds a Home” story, with strong elements of “The Ugly Duckling.” Add an ocean cruise, intense dialogue and splashes of humour–and Tina has her very own 737-word story.

Which brings me to remember once again that we’re all individuals. There’s a place, and it’s a prominent one, for doing what we’re told in school and completing assigned homework. But there’s also a place to put creativity on cruise sans control and let imagination run free.

I’m glad I get to be there for that part.

Categories: Journey | Tags: , , , , | 2 Comments

A Winning Old Door, and an Open Door for a Little Girl

stories door 2

Bright Day 1

warm and bright cold night

Thank you, everyone!

You chose “What stories lie beyond the door?” as my #1 entry to the photo contest. It was followed by “Winter sunshine and shadow” and “Warm and bright on a cold winter night.”

Here are your votes, by category of voter. Some voted for more than one pic, more than one person in a category voted for the same pic–it’s all good.

G+ friends: 3, 4, 1

Other friends: 4, 3

Artists: 1, 3

Family: 2, 3, 1

#3 also had the most interaction–even people who didn’t vote tried to answer the question! I find it interesting to speculate how much effect the caption had on the votes. Two kind friends suggested I edit out the pointy-headed photographer’s shadow (no, they they didn’t actually say that 🙂 but you can see the difference here:

No one chose #5, “Protected and cared for in the cold.”

Protected and cared for in the cold

This did not surprise me as I do not really think it has much artistry, and it’s missing the lovely light of the top three. But it did garner the most +1s (equivalent to Facebook Likes). I actually put this one in as a tribute to farmers who care for their animals, and the approvals and kind comment indicate I may have succeeded there.

We’re allowed to enter three photos, and I’m eager to send off your choices.

Little May should be here by next month, and I’m eager to start snapping pix for her very own alphabet book.

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A One-of-a-Kind Book for Tommy’s New Sister

The Reason: Little May has been in foster care since she was a baby. She’s almost two years old now, and our daughter, Lisa, and her husband, George, are waiting expectantly for the adoption to be finalized.

The Vision: I want to make a book that will help to anchor May to her new home and family, as well as help her big brother, Tommy, with his project. A book lover himself, eight-year-old Tommy wants to teach May to read!

I see an alphabet book, loosely structured, and using phrases and sentences. For example:

A a
May has an alligator book.

C c
The cat lives downstairs with Emma.
The new baby has a cradle.

R r
Tommy is reading May a story.

I would use a plain font, and there would be photos to go with each sentence.

Here’s where I’m asking for your help. There’s a County photo contest which I plan to enter. All contestants get some free prints at a local photo shop. Having entered what I feel is a fair effort, I want to take the free print voucher to the photo shop and get the pictures for May’s book printed there.

My themes for the contest are winter, beauty and gratitude.

Could you let me know if you think any of #1, 2, 3, 4 or 5 might be of interest to the judges?

Please vote for one or more photos, or if none appeal, #6 (keep trying!).

Bright Day 1

#1 Winter sunshine and shadow

footprints past

#2 Footprints from the past?

stories door 2

#3 What stories lie beyond the door?

warm and bright cold night

#4 Warm and bright on a cold dark night

Protected and cared for in the cold

#5 Protected and cared for in the cold

Thank you for your help!

Categories: Journey | Tags: , , | 21 Comments

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