Dear Blogosphere …

19th c gentleman at 21st c laptop

Image: The Art of Manliness

You inspire me every day to be a better writer. Some of you lay your hearts out on the page two or three times a week. I am awed by your honesty, your bravery, and your skill. Many of the best writers I know are fellow bloggers and you awe me regularly. That’s why I set aside a day each week—Monday—to highlight some of the best writing I’ve found. The funny, the sad, the thought-provoking, the beautiful, and the harrowing. I can only take a bottleful out of the ocean each week but I try my best to make it a great one. Thank you for inspiring me and pushing me.

And thanks to those who post interminable lists and click-bait headlines. You’ve taught me what not to do, even if it costs me clicks. I don’t care. I know I’ll never make money off the blog and I’ve given up thinking otherwise. I’m happier and my writing will be better as a result.

Because it’s important as a writer to learn what you want to write and also what you don’t want to write. That’s why you read as much as you can—so you can learn the difference.

So I will continue to make my small contribution to our vast shared community—and the cozy FMF community as well—to continue writing about parenting and life and sharing my experiences as a dad, husband, reader, writer, Girl Scout volunteer, Catholic, and all the other words that describe me.

I know I’m not the only one who cares about these things. I know I can encourage others just as I’ve been encouraged. And I’m going to stick with it.

Thank you for reading. Please come again soon.

Five-Minute-Friday-4-300x300

 

Advertisements

More Stuff Anna Says

exasperated anna

Photo: Julia Ozab

Our daughter has a great sense of humor, and says some really funny things. We try to write them down as soon as she says them. We often share them on Facebook and if they’re brief enough I post them to Twitter too. Here are some more of the funniest ones…

Julia was tossing her in the pool one evening and told her that she could only do it while in the pool. Anna asked “Why?” Julia said “If I tried to do it out of the pool, it would kill me.” Anna’s response? “It wouldn’t kill you, Mom, because then you wouldn’t be alive!”

Once when I asked her what she was thinking, she said “If you could read my mind, you’d know.”

Another time, while hanging upside down off the couch: “It’s hard to think when your brain’s upside down.”

While “training” one of her plush elephant toys: “It’s hard to keep an elephant on schedule.”

Back in the pool— this time doing flips: “I did a double. Now I did a triple! Now a quadriple!”

On her jewelry choices: “I’m wearing two bracelets, one for each wrist, but I’m wearing one necklace because I only have one neck.”

Playing on her iPad: “I don’t like level three! I’m skipping level three from now on!”  “All level threes?” I asked. “Yes!”

Once she tried to say either “it slipped my mind” or “I lost track of time,” but it came out as “I lost my mind.”

One day while throwing out grape stems for the birds to collect and build nests: “I’ll just toss it out here for whoever gets it first. And no, I didn’t name one of them ‘Whoever Gets It First.'”

At Princess Night with the Eugene Emeralds: “They should have a Princess Night every week!”

Later that night, when it was time to leave: “But, Mom, I want to stay and party!”

And the next morning:”I slept in because I was out partying last night past my bedtime.”

This next one came up while watching the original Toy Story. Right after the scene when Sid performs the first “double brain transplant” by switching the doll’s head with the pteranodon’s head, Anna looks over and says “That’s not how you do a real brain transplant.”

Julia related this one on Facebook: “Anna has created a new word … ‘Talentor’—someone who has many talents. (And she is apparently the first example of the word).”

Another Anna word: seatbeltilization n. The act of using a seat belt.

Just the other night I was talking to her from the next room. She didn’t respond, so I asked”Anna can you hear a word I’m saying?” Her answer? “No.”

And finally a poem that starts with a story …

I said a phrase to Anna today that I haven’t said in months, because she got tired of it. “That’s the plan, Ann … a.” It slipped out and as soon as I said it, I apologized. “That’s okay,” she replied. “I’m not mad, Dad. Or sad, Dad.” “Are you glad?” I asked. “I am glad.”She paused and smiled. “Dad.”

Saving and Sharing Water (Cont.)

Save Water Share Water

Update! Anna completed both her Save Water and Share Water projects this week. She redeemed enough bottles and cans by last Tuesday to exceed her $20 goal and finish her Save Water project. But she’d been promised a few more bags. She turned those in on Friday, and upped her total to almost $24.

We rounded up her total to $25, and this evening she went to Maddie’s Thirst (a charity:water September Campaign) and made a donation. In two weeks, we’ll make a matching donation of $25.

And that completes her Share Water project. All that’s left is to finish her Wonders of Water book and take her WOW pledge, and she will complete her journey. We’re so proud of what she’s accomplished!

Wondering how you can help? Make a matching donation of $25 (or whatever you want to give) to Maddie’s Thirst. All contributions to charity: water September Campaigns will be matched by a generous donor up to the first $1,000,000 raised.

And you can still take Anna’s Save Water Pledge. It costs no money, just a commitment to recycle.

Note: beyond sending you a thank-you email, I will not share your email with anyone or bother you ever again.

Her First Girl Scout Badge!

At the End of the Trail Interpretive Center

Photo: Julia Ozab

Anna has earned her first Girl Scout badge! As I typed that sentence I realized that I will never type it again. Yes, she will likely earn many more badges for as long as she’s a Girl Scout. But she will only have one first and this is it.

Oregon Trail Badge

The Oregon Trail Brownie Badge.

We visited the End of the Oregon Trail Interpretive Center on our way up Portland on July 5th, the first day of our family vacation. Anna took a lot of photos and learned about some of the hardships of the trail first hand.

Continue reading

Gallery

Animal Diets Poster Project

GSOSW Zoological Brownie Badge

GSOSW Zoological Brownie Badge

In addition to her Oregon Trail Badge, which is nearly complete, Anna is also working on her GSOSW Zoological Brownie Badge. Yesterday, I shared her hippo habitat, and today I’m sharing her second activity— identifying herbivores, carnivores, and omnivores from a local zoo.  Anna chose Wildlife Safari as her “zoo,” and a poster-project made from her own photos as the second step toward her badge.

Continue reading