Bloggerhood Etc. 2/2//15

Cornelia Seigneur at home.

Cornelia Becker Seigneur (Photo: Vern Uyetake/West Linn Tidings)

Best News.Walking On: Longtime (West Linn) Residents Working to Get Back on Their Feet After Serious Accident” by Patrick Malee at West Linn Tidings.

Best Parenting Post.Sympathetic Pregnancy Hits the Chaos Team” by Evelyn Shoop at Momsicle.

Bravest.Good Girls Don’t Get Depressed” by Cara Strickland at Tanya Marlow’s Thorns and Gold.

Best Special Needs Post.Sharing in the Sorrow of Others” by Sandra Peoples at Not Alone.

Best Answer to a Stupid Question.Pope Francis, Radical Leftist?” by Elizabeth Stoker Bruenig at The New Republic.

Best Rant.If Any of You Mention Oils, I Will Punch You in the Face” by Melanie Dale at Coffee + Crumbs.

Best Essay.What the World Will Speak in 2115” by John H. McWhorter at The Wall Street Journal.

Best Reminder.The Holocaust’s Forgotten Victims: The 5 Million Non-Jewish People Killed By The Nazis” by Louise Ridley at Huff Post UK.

Best Literary Analysis.‘I am No Man’ Doesn’t Cut It: The Story of Eowyn” by Mariah Huehner at The Mary Sue.

Best Book Review.Apraxia Monday: A Meditation on Play” a review of Savage Park by Leslie Lindsay at Speaking of Apraxia.

Best Interview.Cardinal Marx on Francis, the Synod, Women in the Church and Gay Relationships” by Luke Hansen S.J. at America.

Best Video.I Still Haven’t Found What I’m Looking For” by Peter Hollens, featuring Sabrina Carpenter. (via YouTube).

Bloggerhood Etc. 10/13/14


BEEFTANK!!! (Image: Jon Bois/SB Nation)

Best Return.Breaking Madden: BEEFTANK Returns” by Jon Bois at SB Nation.

Most Honest.Making Peace With My Mental Illness” by Cara Strickland at Little Did She Know.

Best Special Needs Post.An Extraordinary Story” by Robert Rummel-Hudson at Support for Special Needs.

Best List.10 Reasons I Can’t Relate to the 30-Something Blogger” by Andee Zomerman at Nature of a Servant.

Best Question.I Sing Because I’m Happy! Or is it the Other Way Around?” by Adam Hall at Tenor Dad.

Best Parenting Post.Target’s Response To My Calling Out Their Girls” Clothing Problem” by Stephanie Glese at Huff Post Parents.

Best Commentary.Synod 14: The Church Needs to Replace the Family” by Artur Roseman at Cosmos in the Lost.

Strangest Story.I’m a Blonde Tattooed Girl From Texas. Why Are ISIS Fighters Tweeting Marriage Proposals to Me?” by Jennifer Williams at New Republic.

Best Use of Bad Candy.Six Silly/Spooky Candy Corn Crafts” by Brent Almond at Designer Daddy.

Best Travel Article.Shakespeare and the Seven-Year Old” By Melissa Hart at Show Me the Monkey: An Oregon Family’s Adventures.

Best Guest Post.Why I Am Made Right” by Ashley Linne at Addie Zierman’s How to Talk Evangelical.

Cutest.What Happens When Second Graders Are Treated to a Seven-Course, $220 Tasting Meal” by Jeffrey Blitz at New York Times Magazine (Video).

Best Essay.40,000 Suicides Annually, Yet America Simply Shrugs” by Greg Zoroya at USA Today.

Best Bilingual Video.Transformers: Age of Extinction (變形金剛4 灭绝重生)” by Honest Trailers (via YouTube).

“The Transformers are back! And they’re as over these movies as we are.”

A New Word



$127.50 at Letterpress Blocks by (in)courage (New words don’t come cheap!)

What makes a word?

A combination of letters? Yes.

A defined meaning? Yes.

Being in the dictionary? Um … not necessarily.

At some point, every word had to be made up by someone. Shakespeare made up words, so did Lewis Carroll, G.K. Chesterton, Dr. Seuss, and many others. Language is a living, growing organic thing, It mutates and evolves over time as it’s spoken. Dictionaries only report what’s already there (and sometimes they propagandize what someone thinks should be there, but that’s another post).

So why not make up a word? My daughter does it all the time, and if creativity is the essence of play—and I believe it is—why shouldn’t I make up words too?

I did. Last night Without even trying.

Spinderrific: adj. Something so good it makes you want to spin in a circle as fast as you can. A combination of terrific and spin, with a “d” thrown in because it sounded right.

Now I invite you to create your own word and leave it in the comments.

Thanks to Jimmy Edgeworth for inspiring my new word (and this post) at last night’s Mid-Valley Willamette Writers Meeting.


Bloggerhood Etc. 7/1/13

Claire Simpson

Photo: Bradford Telegraph and Argus

Here are my seven favorite posts from the last week of June, along with my usual bonus video at the end.

Most Inspiring. “Guiseley woman completes 1,000-mile challenge for Smile Train charity” by Chris Tate in the Bradford Telegraph and Argus (UK). By running at least a mile a day, plus a marathon, half marathon, and ten 10k race, Claire Simpson exceeded her goal of a 1,000 miles, raising £3,100 for children born with clefts. Wow!

Most Moving. “Death’s Waiting Room” by Natalie Trust. I’m not sure why she is grieving (she doesn’t say), but I grieve with her and I pray with her.

Best Mom Post. “The Guilt of the Working Mother,” a guest post by “Isobel’s Mom, Bridget” on Momsicle. Living in Ireland, Bridget had the opportunity to take a full year maternity leave from her job in the semiconductor industry. Now she has to go back to work. Heart wrenching.

Best Dad Post. “Babies and Baseball” by Jason Duncan on NYC Dads Group. Okay, she’s really a toddler, and she had a great time.

Favorite Post that Taught Me Something I Didn’t Know. “Auf Wiedersehen to a Dialect”  by Katy Vine in Texas Monthly. Did you know there was a German immigrant community in Texas that has been speaking its own unique dialect, called Texas German, since the 1830s? Me neither. Fascinating story.

Post I Want to Read to My Daughter Today. “A Second Grade Intro to Fiction Writing” by Leslie Lindsay on Live, Write, Love: The Art and Craft of Writing. Actually, it’s a good review for writers of all ages.

Post I Want My Daughter to Read Herself in a Few Years. “Modesty: I Don’t Think it Means What You Think it Means” by Rachel Held Evans on Q Ideas for the Common Good. An extraordinary post on the difference between humility and humiliation, and a must-read for both women and men.

And in honor of Thursday’s holiday . . .

Best Video. “Honest Trailers – Independence Day” by Screen Junkies on A great reminder of why I hated this movie so much.

That’s two-and-a-half hours of my life that I will never get back!

What if it’s all Rhythm?

Open score.

J.S. Bach, Mass in B Minor, vocal score (Photo: Claire Stewart)

I saw poet Phil Long perform at the Faith and Culture Writers Conference last April, and amidst the torrents of words and images that flowed from his heart and through his lips surfaced a question about life that became the focus of his poetic whirlpool.

“What if it’s all poetry?”

I thought about that question tonight as I finally sat down after a long day to clear my thoughts and tackle this week’s Five Minute Friday. And soon, another question arose in my mind.

“What if it’s all rhythm?”

Rhythm, along with language, is the essence of poetry. Rhythm is what gives poetry its structure, its drive, its emotion and often even some if its imagery.

That’s why a line like “Seagulls swooped overhead, periodically pausing to punch holes in the surf” creates an visual image beyond the meaning of the words. Alliteration, onomatopoeia,  and the length and pacing of words gives the sentence a rhythm that matches the movement within the scene.

Rhythm is also the essence of life. We exist in time. Our hearts beat at a regular tempo. Day and night cycle regularly and our biology cycles with it.

Us and all living things.

So maybe the question is this. What if we—and just we—are both rhythm and language, the essential elements of poetry? And what if we—and just we—are both because we alone are made in the Image of God? What if the whole universe is a symphony composed and conducted by God, and through us what was once the inexpressible beauty of the divine has become known as God set words to the music?

What if the universe, the whole of creation, is rhythm and melody and harmony, and it is we who are the poetry?

And what if that is what makes us uniquely in the Image of God?

Five Minute Friday