Marching Madness – SOL #23 – 2017


I read a post today about how to write a Blitz poem.  You can read about it here. Joodles   I went for the shortened version.

March Madness

Madness takes its toll

Toll house

Toll house cookies

Cookies crumble

THAT’S how the cookie crumbles

Crumble to your knees

Pray on your knees

Pray all day

Day to day

Daylight Savings Time

Time for fun

Time for work

Times table

Table order

Chaotic order

Marching orders




CO-KINDERATE – SOL #21 – 2017



The new word my students came up with after completing this collaborative art project earlier this  year.  It’s been our go to  operational word ever since.


Here’s how I describe them:





Never dull




Art filled




Some art projects just make me happy!

My Not So Favorite Slice – SOL #20 – 2017


I’ve missed a few days.   Life happened and I couldn’t bring myself to write about it.

Today, I got caught up on my email and was inspired by this post, Elsie’s blog, who was inspired by her friend’s post here, Leigh Anne’s post.  I love the domino effect!

So today, I am doing a mash up by taking  a twist to Leigh Anne’s invite of making a list of your five favorite things and Elsie’s recent chronicle of unpleasant medical tests.

NOT My Favorite Tests:

  1.  Monday – Mammogram – 3 dimensional body parts becoming nearly 2 dimensional is never a fun time.
  2. Tuesday – Mammogram repeat – 3D becoming even closer to 2D; even less fun, plus a newly furrowed brow.
  3. Wednesday –  MRI – So LOUD, even with earplugs! No pain, just noise; additional worried brow furrow plus niggling questions;  What?  Where?  Why?  How big?  Since when?
  4. Thursday – Pinpoint Scan – Breasts are numb but brain has been flooded with tidal wave of information
  5. Thursday afternoon – Excision – Same numb breasts but can feel oddly cool trickles of blood.

My Favorite Result:

  1.  Monday –  Carcinoma In Situ, all removed;  Dr’s orders – Return in 6 months, excellent prognosis, stay healthy.

Ahhhh, big sigh of relief, I can breathe again and…


AKR, RIP – SOL #14, 2017


I read the love letter from Amy Krouse Rosenthal extolling the virtues of her soon to be widowed husband.  She was looking for a new wife for him.  So Amy of her.

Amy of the yellow umbrella.  Amy of Duck! Rabbit!  Amy of “We Are All One.”  Amy, my first blogging, virtual friend.  She was eternal sunshine even through a windy, cold Chicago winter.

We hadn’t connected for awhile, distance does that to a relationship, but when we did reach out, we reveled in our love of language and we traded some spirited letters, videos, emails and texts.

Now, no more.  Amy died two days ago.  She leaves a legacy as bold, as strong, as enduring as the beautiful sugar maples that line the Chicago streets where she used to leave random dollar bills hanging just to brighten someone’s day.

Me, of the yellow backpack, she, of the yellow umbrella.

I am feeling so blue.

Sunday Gardening – SOL #12 – 2017


Fingers ease deep into the dark rich soil

Moist clumps break easily in my hands

Thank you endless winter rains

For softening my garden earth

Depositing bits of sand, mineral and grit

To support my tenuous seeds, stems, leaves

Providing a rooting place for what will grow

What needs to grow

What needs your stability and incubating space

To flourish, go deep and climb higher and higher.

Dark, rich soil, giver of life

Landing place of seeds

Foundation of growth

Foundation of my soul.

Surprise Visit – SOL #9 – 2017


“Hello Mrs. M” rumbled the deep voices.

I turned around to see two tall high schoolers with vaguely familiar faces, wide smiles and the beginnings of little mustaches.  Hmmmm, I know these two, but what are their names??

“Well, hello there, guys!  How are you?” My mind is racing, tumbling through my mental rolodex of former students.  They look like they’re about 15 which would mean they were in K about ten years ago…

“We just wanted to come back to see you.  Boy everything looks so different AND so small.”  I usher them into the classroom and have them try out the chairs to see it they still fit.

“Oh, look!  You still have the little dollhouse.” the taller one says.  “Remember we used to play with that all the time?”

Ah-ha!  It’s Damion and Duane!  My two little long-haired kindergarteners who were the loveliest, kindest young students so many years ago and YES, every day they worked through elaborate play scripts in the dollhouse.

We caught up with how they are doing at school, math and writing are their favorite classes besides PE and sports of course.  They walked around the room, pointing and remembering some of the toys and books, reminiscing about similar projects they did SOOOO long ago.

Such a lovely surprise to see these two young men at my classroom door.  I guess we never know what the day will hold!

IWD – SOL #8, 2017


In honor of International Women’s Day, here is an incomplete list of important women in my life, past and parent:

Darlyne, Molly, Kelly, Ashley, Nora, Anna, Maria, Lydia, Betty, Flo, Margaret, Cathy, Pat, Arina, Estelle, Wilmaretha, Donsie, Vera-Lisa, Leslie, Lesley, Lynn, Bobo, Sheila, Gloria, Laura, Honore, Heidi, Anh, Becky, Chris and Kris

Thank you strong, compassionate, smart and creative women.  You rock!

In my mind, I planned to write a bit about each one but the flu bug has gotten to me and, today, it is all I can do to make the list.  😦

Fresh Air – SOL #6 – 2017


Our End of Year (EOY) writing prompt window is open.  I feel a knot in the pit of my stomach.  How can it already be the end of the year? (Actually, as a colleague pointed out, it is NOT the end of the year, we still have over 50 days left.  It’s just the administration who feels the need to have us input the data now.  Grrrrr!)

Alas,  we are made to assess these little ones now and I am horrified to admit this, but I feel myself “teaching to the test!”  Today I realized I was pushing my kinders too hard.  “How about another detail?  Did you write ALL the sounds for that word? Did you tell the reader your topic first?  Remember only lower case letters in the middle of words!

Looking around the room I could see a general slowing of writing, more looks to me for validation, more fretting and less “getting.”  I looked outside and noticed the morning rain had stopped.

“Students!” I announced, “We’re going outside to look at the world!”

“Why?” asked one student as he bounded towards the front door.

“Your teacher needs some fresh air!” was all I answered.


CDS – SOL #5 – 2017


Last night we were lucky enough to see Cirque du Soleil’s LUZIA show.  It was spectacular!

C ircus extraordinaire

I mmersive and surreal

R eality suspended

Q uirky

U nique perspectives

E ndless entertainment


D ynamic

U tterly mesmerizing


S wirling colors

O there-worldly

L ong & lithe, athletes & artists

E xquisite beauty

I ncredible show

L asting memories.

Snip, Snip, Snip – SOL #3 – 2017


Is there anything lovelier after a long, draining week at work than to sit in the comfy  hairdresser’s chair and let your senses be fully renewed by her expertise?

Honeysuckle and tea rose wafts over me as I feel the silky lather on my scalp and hear the soft scrunching and slurping as she shampoos my hair. An errant drizzle, a little  splash, slowly dribbles down my neck and under my collar.  A surprise reminder that I am not floating away in a tropical dream.

A few snip, snip, snips, a Wooosh of warm air and a brisk brush later and I am refreshed, rejuvenated and ready to embrace my life.

Sometimes fully relishing a simple pleasure is all I need to bring me to my senses.

Life is good.