Facing my fears #SOLC19

I’m just going to say this up front. I’m TERRIFIED of snakes. I have no idea where this fear came from. No bad experiences with them as a child. Never saw Snakes on a Plane. (As if!) Absolutely no clue where it stems from

When I worked in Uganda during the summer of 2010, I was petrified I’d run into one, two, three, or more. It was Africa, after all. I’d see snakes, right? During my three-week teaching trip I went gorilla trekking in the Virunga mountains on the border with the DRC, went chimp trekking on the Kasiisi Reserve, even walked alongside fields of tea that went on as far as the eye could see. Not one snake. Incredible!

So why, when we hike in the woods here in the northeast am I so terrified? It really is irrational. During yesterday’s weekly hike, I veered off the Battle Road trail that my husband is using to train for a long-distance hike and went into the woods by myself. He needed to clock a 20-mile walk, and I just wasn’t up for that. Instead, at the 5-mile mark, we parted company and I took the vernal pool trail (of course I did!) into the woods. By myself. All alone. Solo. Nobody with me. Yup. I did that. And guess what? Didn’t see a single snake in 45 minutes.

Now that I’ve written this, I will. Because that’s how it works. But I think I’m ready. Well, maybe.

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

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Held hostage #SOLC19

“Have fun!”, said my husband instinctively as he dropped me off at the door to the hair salon.

“Thanks. See you around 4:30,” I replied.

“Wait. Do you have fun when you get your hair done?”, he asked.

“Sure do!” was my response.

Hah! Have fun? Are you kidding? 90 minutes in someone else’s care, relinquishing all control? You bet I do!

No household chores or errands can be done.

I’m forced to sit still with color on for 30 minutes with nothing but People magazine filled with actors and musicians I may or may not have heard of. In Touch gets me caught up on the weeks leading up to the arrival of Harry and Meghan’s royal baby.

The Keurig machine provides me with a bottomless cup of relaxing chamomile tea.

Salon staff I’ve known for a dozen years, give or take, stop by to say hello and give or take updates on life.

Around-town gossip is shared. Who is closing, who is opening, who is causing controversy.

Laughter. Lots of laughter.

Then, with feet propped up on a foot rest, the head massage in the rinsing sink begins. All the week’s worries swirl down the drain with colored residue. Ready to begin anew.

A slightly altered angled bob, refreshed color, grays blended away. And then my husband appears at my side. “Did you guys have fun?” You bet we did.

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

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Golden Hour #SOLC19

Golden hour.

The moment I look forward to all week.

Saturday morning. Early. Very early.

Sitting side-by-side on our living room couch as the sky begins to lighten.

Soon lamps are no longer needed, but coffee is.

Me with my novel, my notebook, my laptop.

Always in that order.

He with his book, his writing project, a small stack of bills to pay.

Sometimes lingering longer than an hour.

Calm. Peaceful. Still.

It will end soon, but for now we savor it.

Golden.

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

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An amphibious affair! #PoetryFriday #SOLC19

Happy first Friday of spring, everyone! It’s the second to last Friday of the 2019 Slice of Life Challenge at Two Writing Teachers (how is that possible?) AND it’s Poetry Friday. I’m slicing up a bit of poetry this rainy Friday in response to a big event that occurred last evening. Rebecca Herzog is hosting this week’s PF gathering on her blog, Sloth Reads. Won’t you join us there as well? And BTW, slicing poetry on Friday’s during the SOLC is a great way to flex those writing muscles. If you are ever wondering where to find the weekly host of Poetry Friday, you’ll find a list of hosts and their blog links here.

Last night was a big night. “Big Night” for amphibians, that is! The first rainy spring night in the Northeast, with temperatures in the 45-50 degree range, is the first night amphibians start making their move. After hibernating all winter long in the woods, it’s time for them to make their way to local vernal pools for breeding season.

Party time!

Our Kindergarten biologist-in-residence, Emilie, visited us yesterday to show us the traps she was about to put in our campus vernal pool. She will be monitoring them regularly, and in a few weeks, when the “Big Night” party animals have conducted their business, we will meet Emilie there to collect the wood frog eggs we will be headstarting in our classrooms and meet, face-to-face, whomever might have wandered into the traps after a wild night of partying. If we are lucky, we will get to meet a frog or two up close, or even a salamander. Seriously? Could these party-goers be any cuter?

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Photo: parklands.org

As you can imagine, my Kindergarteners were enthralled at the thought of 100s of 1000s of frogs and salamanders on the move in the middle of the night. Wow! All I can think of is a party train. (I’d cue the Gap Band, but WordPress won’t let me.)

There are “Big Night” enthusiasts who meet up in the middle of the night, in the rain, to guide these adorable, but vulnerable creatures to safety across roads.  I’m obsessed, but not that dedicated! To learn more about “Big Night,” click here.

And finally a “Big Night” poetry party favor to take home.

Vernal Pool Spine Poem (1)

This is a spine poem I created from the titles of the books in my collection for teaching our year-long vernal pool study. Party on, creatures of the night.

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

 

 

 

The Fly That’s Making Me Crazy! #SOLC19

Don’t get me wrong. I’m excited about spring. Longer days. Warmer temps. Bulbs popping up. Love it all!

What I don’t love? The flies that have been hibernating somewhere, and suddenly wake up and are in our house. I am trying to write at the end of a long day, and they are annoying!

They are lethargic, I must say, just having woken up from a long winter’s nap.  This makes them pretty easy to catch. But they keep popping up everywhere, and I’d rather they not.

Because I am always curious, I Googled around a bit and discovered they are most likely cluster flies. Click here to learn more. It’s a thing!

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

 

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Full Moon Skinny #SOLC19

What will you bring

Full moon

Madness

Mayhem

Spring

Full moon

Balance

Light

Hope

Full moon

Bring what you will

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Feel like trying your hand at a “skinny” poem? Click here to learn how. And to see another example, Alice at Alice Nine has a delicious skinny in her slice, too! 

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

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A sign #SOLC19

I’m struggling

To find the good

In this day

In this week

But I found a little

Just a very little

Waiting for me

At home

On this sunny afternoon

I had to look for it

It was hard to see

But it was there

Waiting for me

The new

Amongst the old

Forcing its way up

Against resistance

Determined

To find a path forward

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This post is part of the annual month-long Slice of Life writing challenge organized by Two Writing Teachers. Join us! It’s my third year of slicing in the challenge and I’m looking forward to writing and learning along with all of you.

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