Friday, August 17, 2018
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I recently watched the movie, “No One’s Perfect” and decided I had to get the book it was based on, the autobiography of a man born with no arms or legs. Calhan, Colorado high school physical education equipment. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) The movie showed the author during one year of teaching, how he related to his students, how he managed his considerable challenges, which were less about his physical needs than the reaction of students and teachers alike to him. As movies often do, it turned out the movie had little to do with the book. Instead of focusing on a single year of teaching,... (Read More ...)

I asked my mother what was in her mother’s cedar chest when she gave it to me. Doroteo Arango Arámbula (June 5, 1878 – July 23, 1923), better known as Francisco or “Pancho” Villa, a Mexican Revolutionary general. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) “I don’t know.” “You don’t know?” “I’ve never opened it.” This is as close as my mother ever came to admitting she had emotions. Over the years, I’ve taken a few things out. My grandmother’s wedding dress was packed away carefully. I took it out to wear to my mother’s 80th birthday and it now hangs in a closet. A poster... (Read More ...)

On August 21, 1959, Hawaii became the 50th and the most recent state to join the United States. Flag of Hawaii Hawai`i: Ka hae Hawaiʻi Like Vermont, Texas and California, it was an independent republic before becoming a state. Hawaii was a Republic for four years, from 1894 to 1898, after American and European businessmen living there overthrew the king. The United States annexed it as a territory in 1898. It was a sovereign monarchy from 1810 to 1893. It was probably populated by Polynesians from the Marquesas in 300 A.D. and possibly from Tahiti in 1000 A.D. British Captain James Cook discovered... (Read More ...)

  Illustration from the play Snow White and the Seven Dwarfs by Jessie Braham White, Jacob Grimm, Wilhelm Grimm, Edmond W Rickett, and Charles Buckles Falls. The caption read: “Here for nearly a year they have watched over and night”, this has been stripped in this derivative for transcription at another place. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Millions of Cats, Wanda Ga’g’s first children’s book, (1893 – 1946), was released in 1928. This must be the first place we heard, “millions and billions and trillions” that now is associated with the number of stars, as popularized by... (Read More ...)

How did you get your Grandma name? William Merritt Going to see Grandma (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Many new or about-to-be grandmas tell me they are not going to pick their Grandma name. They are going to wait for the first grandchild to pick a name for them. They do this in hopes they will have a story to tell about how they got their name. One Grandma I talked to recently said that her children were trying to get the new baby to call her Grandma, though she was waiting for her grandson to come up with something on his own. He started with Bink, since he couldn’t pronounce Grandma, but his parents... (Read More ...)

Magic Squares: Odd The magic square, according to Chinese legend, was first constructed on the back of a turtle and is called the Lo Shu magic square, the only order of numbers in a 3×3 grid in which they all add up to 15. The unique normal magic square of order 3, also known as the Lo Shu Square. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) By contrast, when there are 4 rows and columns, there are 880 different ways to lay out the numbers in a magic square. Constructing a magic square is different if there are an odd number of rows and columns than an even number. Let’s get started making your own! Materials: Paper Pen... (Read More ...)

A friend told me recently that she had received a book for Mother’s Day from her daughter that gives her a place to write down stories about her childhood and her children. Children with a book (Photo credit: Wikipedia) She planned to sit down and fill out every page. Called “Mom, Tell Me Your Story: A Guided Journal,” the book is a series of questions with lined pages leaving room to write down the answers in the book. The questions are organized in four categories: Family framework Milestones Lessons Learned Personal. The family framework questions invite the reader to enter their parents’... (Read More ...)

What a birthday gift – a book about you and to you from a Grandma who is a writer. Cheryl Therrien, an author and blogger ( and who loves technology, decided to write a series of letters to her upcoming grandchild. Letters from Grandma She published her book, Letters from Grandma: Before You Were Born, just weeks before the May 4, 2013 arrival of her new grandson. She nicknamed her grandchild Sweetling. She has already started a conspiracy with Sweetling to spoil him or her rotten, and to reveal his or her daddy’s tricks, showing her delight at the thought... (Read More ...)

Having no daughters, I imagine that mothers and daughters have a deep, intimate relationship in which they can share hopes and fears, tea parties and toenail painting. Mother and Child watching each other (Photo credit: Wikipedia) But, that may just be in my imagination. I’ve interviewed enough young mothers now to know that when young women become mothers, whether they are daughters or daughters-in-law, their mothers think the relationship will remain one-way – they will continue to give advice. Daughters, by contrast, just like sons, think that they are pretty good at this parenting business... (Read More ...)

How many of these things do you recognize? Lightsaber. List of Star Wars air, aquatic, and ground vehicles (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Jedi. The Force. Darth Vader. Obi-wan Kenobi. R2-D2. A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away…. Princess Leia. C-3PO. Luke Skywalker. Yoda. Death Star. Jabba the Hut. Chewbacca. Han Solo. All of them, right? Because Star Wars, released May 25, 1977, is in our culture. If you’re a real fan, you’ll know which order the films were released in, relative to the time they portrayed. Star Wars actually represents episode IV: A New Hope (1977) The Empire Strikes... (Read More ...)