Thursday, January 30, 2014

#Nerdlution: The Year of Billy Miller and More

We're into our first week of the second round of #nerdlution.  Today is the first round-up at Michelle Haseltine's blog:  One Grateful Teacher.  Each Thursday participants will link up to share their progress.

Let's be honest, a few days of being trapped in the house because of the extreme cold made this an easy first week.  Here are a few of my DISCOVERIES this week as I read for #nerdlution.

This Week's Discoveries

A Book
The Year of Billy Miller by Kevin Henkes

Billy isn't sure how his year in second grade is going to go.  He doesn't get off to the best start with his teacher and Emma, another second grader, drives him crazy.  Things at home with his sister, Sal, can be challenging too.  Thankfully his parents always help to pull him through.  Billy loves Papa and Mama and his love for them shines throughout the story.

This is a great story about growing up.  Henkes captures the joys and challenges of being 7 perfectly.  If you haven't read this Newbery Honoree yet, you'll want to add it to your reading list.

A Blog (Maybe a few blogs)
This week I discovered a few posts that made me pause for a bit.

Teachers for Teachers  Pre-Assessment Questions:  Assessment Opportunities:  In this post, Clare and Tammy, authors of Assessment in Perspective, share authentic assessment opportunities that happen as we talk with children.  There is much to learn about what children know if we just ask a question.  This post is full of possible questions to ask as well as suggestions for listening closely to these conversations.

GStevens Blog  Slice of Life:  Would You Rather Fast-Forward Time or Rewind It?   I think we all ponder this question every now and then.  Stop by to see what happened when students were asked their preference.  Their answer may surprise you.  Which would you prefer?

Two Writing Teachers  Writing About Reading in a Writer's Notebook  Two Writing Teachers is hosting a week conversation dedicated to writing about reading.  Across the week several posts about the topic will be shared by the blog authors.  The event will be wrapped up with a Twitter chat on February 3rd at 8:30 EST (more here).  In this post, Stacey shares her thinking about writing in response to reading in a Writer's Notebook.  Her lens of reading as a writer really shapes her responses in her notebook.  Often she is able to spring from a piece she has read into new writing.  So many ideas here!

Can't wait to see what next week will bring!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

Round 2: #nerdlution

Ding.  Into the ring we go for round two of #nerdlution.  I took a few hits in round one, but managed to stay on my feet.  I read 50 minutes of fiction most nights.  Each evening I tried to be done with school work as well as day to day chores by 9 p.m. so I could begin reading.  The first few nights I would watch the clock for my 50 minutes to be done; not because I wasn't enjoying the time, but because I felt like the clock owned me.  I didn't really enjoy this feeling and thought about how our students must feel when we give them "assigned times" to read.  After I realized #nerdlution was a bit flexible, I decided to quit clock watching and just read each night.  Before I knew it I was reading for much longer periods of time.

What I Learned
I'd consider myself more of a nonfiction reader, but I was reminded during the challenge how much I miss getting lost in a story.  I had missed meeting new characters and making them a part of my life for a few days.  Reading fiction also gave me a chance to catch up with all my #nerdybookclub friends who manage to read for hours each day and keep up on all the latest books.  Without Karen Terlecky, Katherine Sokolowski, Katie Strawser and Stephanie Shouldis I would have been lost.

During the event I created a "tissue book rating scale."  It seemed every book I read somehow had me in tears before the end of the story.  Here are a few examples:

What's Next
During round one I was enjoying reading fiction, but I was also not entirely happy with my #nerdlution.  While I was getting to know characters, my nonfiction reading pile was growing.  I wanted to read The Power of Quiet, Thinking Fast and Slow, and Becoming Scientists.  I was also missing spending time with the blogs I enjoy stopping by to read and comment.  There are only so many hours in a day and deciding how to use them is a trick.

This time around I want to be able to diversify my reading a bit.  I want to keep growing the number of fiction books I read, but I also need to have time for nonfiction and blog posts.  I'm going to find time to read each day and will continue to work toward being done with everything by 9 so I can curl up to read.  However, some days just don't work like that so I may have to find my time in a different part of my day.  Each week at the #nerdlution round-up Michele is hosting on Thursdays, in keeping with my #olw DISCOVER, I'll share a book and a blog post I discovered in the previous week.  We'll call it my #BooksandBlogsDiscoveryTour.

The Community
Most of all, I look forward to laughing and learning with everyone tweeting about their triumphs and road blocks.  If you'd like to join, stop by Colby's blog to link to the event.  

Sunday, January 19, 2014

Nonfiction Event #nf10for10

It's that time of year again!  Time for our nonfiction picture book event.  Yes, on Wednesday, February 19th, we'll round up posts of your 10 favorite nonfiction picture books.  We wanted to give you plenty of time to check your stacks, dust off your book shelves, and search your nonfiction books for your favorites.

Each year, in August, Mandy Robek and I host Picture Book 10 for 10 event (links here).  Participants share their 10 favorite picture books.  We then round them up in a jog for future reference.  The lists have grown over the years and participants have been quite clever in weaving interesting posts.  Last year, Julie Balen, suggested we add a nonfiction component to this event.  Here's the link to our 2013 nonfiction event.  

We had so much fun, we thought we should do it again!  So...

Julie, Mandy and I are hosting a nonfiction picture book event.  
  • What:  10 nonfiction books you can't live without
  • Hashtag:  #nf10for10
  • Who:  Anyone interested --- educators, media specialists, librarians, parents, etc.  
  • When:  Wednesday, February 19th 
  • Where:  All posts will need to be linked at Write at the Edge.  Then I will move them into a jog resource during the week of the event.  
Start creating stacks of your favorite nonfiction and consider the 10 nonfiction books you just couldn't live without.  On February 19th ---because as Mandy said, "9 favorite nonfiction books plus your 1 very favorite is 10" --- link your post to Julie's blog.  

Saturday, January 11, 2014

One Little Word Community

It's 1-11!  The perfect day to round up all the One Little Word posts to see if we can build a few connections.

The new year is full of new hope as we move into 2014.  Right now gyms are crowded, everyone is eating better, and for a short time we're all working to improve.  In the last few years the One Little Word movement has caught my attention.  Some bloggers attribute it to Ali Edwards and others to the book One Little Word That Will Change Your Life Forever (Get One Word website via Monica Taggart).  I honestly can't tell you.  One day a couple of years ago I just started reading words from blog to blog and jumped into the fun.  

This year as I traveled from blog to blog I noticed friends choosing the same word.  I thought it would be fun to group them a bit so we could support one another.  I thought today would be the perfect day since it is January 11... or 1/11 (that's for you, Mandy).  Here are the words I've received on a previous post and from Twitter.  If you would like your word add, just leave it in the comments below with a link.  I'll add them into this post between today and tomorrow (1/12).  


Deb Day:  Coffee with Chloe   "There's a spirit to Aloha that I think you have to find (kind of like looking for JOY). I think it means to appreciate what you have and share with others. It means to be content and in the now, not worrying about what you cannot change."

Bark Keister:  Balance

Katherine Sokolowski:  Read, Write, Reflect  "I need to regain the balance, and I'm hoping my word will serve as a reminder for me this year." 

Mindi Rench:  Mindi's Musings  "I need to BE present.  I need to BE open.  I need to BE calm.  I need to BE mindful."

Kimberley:  First in Maine  "This year, after much thought, I have chosen a word that can be open to interpretation, but generally fills me with joy and wonder when thinking about what it can bring."

Jodi Samsinak:  The Writer's Block, "My life is so blessed, but this year, I am going to take time to slow down and enjoy every minute of it."

Mary Lee Hahn:  A Year of Reading  " I need a year of slowing down and focusing on the moment at hand, not getting myself all worked up about what's ahead, or all wrought up about how the things behind me played out."

Maria Caplin:  Teaching in the 21st Century  "I am thankful for the opportunities when I have a choice.  I have learned the littlest choice can make a huge impact on my life."

Mindy Reid:  Principal's Pensieve  "In 2014, I look forward to all of the ways I can show my commitment.  First and foremost, I am committing to this word!  It is my word, and I'm going to own it."

Cathy Sankey:  Every Student, Every Day "As an educator and as a leader, I feel that vision, faith and courage not only guide our work but make the difference between what Richard DuFour calls in On Common Ground the Knowing-Doing Gap."

Julie Johnson:  Raising Readers and Writers  "At this point in my life, I now understand the importance of giving myself permission to not be perfect."  

Jaana:  Jaana's Writing Blog  Stop by to read her discovery poem.  

Cathy Mere:  right here  "Though there are some things I'd like to find out more about, I think DISCOVERY, at least for me, will also be about those random surprises I find that make me want to dig a little deeper; the things that unexpectedly surprise and fascinate me. "
Mandy Robek:  Enjoy and Embrace Learning  "I know I'm ready to straighten out that pitch and make some necessary changes in what I do and how I think so my heart is happier."

Michele Knott:  Mrs. Knott's Book Nook  "But in 2014 I want to encourage myself:  reading is fun, it's enjoyable, it's what I love."

Dana Murphy:  Two Writing Teachers  "This year will be the year that I learn to float.  To me, floating implies a certain steadiness, a calmness.  I picture myself floating in crystal blue waters, breathing in and breathing out.  Moving gently with the breeze.  Calm and steady" 

Cathryn Petticrew:  Learning Journeys  "Focus, for me, is about being intentional with my time and my attention."

Clare:  Assessment in Perspective  "I want to open myself up to thinking about different types of GRIT and how GRIT can help me in a variety of situations in my life."

Monica Taggart  "For me, IGNITE also means to create and launch ideas myself. I also hope to IGNITE sparks in my family, friends, and fellow teachers simply through encouragement and support."

Jennifer Hogan:  The Compelled Educator  "Professionally, my focus areas are growing teachers and leaders, increasing collaboration, finding a mentor, creating a tribe, and taking chances. Those may seem vague, but I am working on the specifics so that I can sharpen my focus. Intentional."

Melanie Meehan:  Two Reflective Teachers  "Sometimes in the rush and pressures of daily life, I do forget that kindness is a daily gift that is available to dole out to the people around me."

Amy Rudd:  The "Rudd"er  "I need to listen to my own heart too-what are my needs and wishes-what is my heart telling me?"

Kevin Hodgson:  Kevin's Meandering Mind  "It’s digital, physical and internal, and I am going to “make” 2014 a year of diving in as deep as I can."

Margaret Simon:  Reflections on the Teche   Margaret has a beautiful poem on her blog about OPEN.  Stop by to read it.   

Jen Vincent:  Patient


Stacey Shubitz:  Two Writing Teachers  "I look forward to 2014 being a promising year for my family, and to the promise of a bright, loquacious future for my daughter."  (Stacey also has listed her promises as well as some new maxims she lives by.  Stop by to read more.)

Leigh Anne Eck:  A Day in the Life:  "Now I know that living my life upside down will help me to REACH out and become a better me...that ME I searched for and found last year."

Rose:  Mentor Texts with Lynne & Rose  "2013 brought a number of changes for me both personally and professionally, and I have had to re-imagine my role as teacher, mother, and writer. Since I am continuing this journey of “re-imagining” as I head into 2014, I think it will serve me well."

Kelsey Empfield  Kelsey plans to use her writer's notebook to help her "remember all the awesome epic-ness that is happening" to her.  

Michelle Haseltine:  One Grateful Teacher "Risk.  It scares me.  It scares the crap out of me!  And that's why I need this word." 

Maria Selke:  Maria's Melange "So - my "word" is more of a theme this year. Breathe... slow down... enjoy each moment instead of always looking for the next thing to complete."

Ramona:  Pleasures from the Page  Ramona has an interesting story - and some beautiful images - of finding her word so stop by.  

Jennifer  (hoping to find a link for Twitter or a blog)

Jennifer M:  I Hablo Espanglish  "In all of this, I want to shine like a SPARK: emitting rays of delight and energy while spreading positive change."

Terje:  Just for a Month or So "My quest should have been for a word that would help me to remember "What kind of a person am I striving to be?" in different situations."

Kendra Limback:  Simply Learning Together "Strong covers and helps define a lot of what I hope to achieve this year. "

Annie Orsini:  Simply Learning Together  "I want to be strong and handle challenges with grace."

Michelle Nero:  Literacy Learning  "Strength in my balance of life and finding time to balance all that I need and want to do and accepting that I can't do it all!"

Franki Sibberson:  A Year of Reading " I am going to try really really really hard to not stress about all that is coming my way and enjoy each day whether it is a day full of work, rest, friends, exercise, whatever."

Tammy:  Assessment in Perspective  Over the past few weeks, I have noticed the word TIME again and again.   It actually feels like this word is choosing me instead of the reverse.

Linda Baie:  TeacherDance  Linda reminds us to choose wisely, " days hold only so many hours."  

Tuesday, January 7, 2014

Do You Wonder Who Chose Your OLW?

"[People] changed because they were embedded in social groups that made change easier. (p. 88)" Duhigg, Power off Habit

As I've been catching up on blog reading in the last week I've noticed many people posting about their One Little Word which I believe was started by Ali Edwards. I've also started to realize that often bloggers have the same word as someone on another blog. For example, I have chosen the word DISCOVER and, as luck would have it, so has my friend Julie.

I'd love to put together a post that groups bloggers with like words so they can support and inspire one another. If you're interested in joining this round-up, please leave your link to OLW post here or send it to me in a tweet by Saturday, January 10th. My hope is to have it posted on 1-11 ---- seems to make sense to post about the ONE word on 1-11.

Hope to share your word soon!

Monday, January 6, 2014

The Lighter Side: Twitter Stays

via Web-Designer Depot
by Geek and Poke
As the calendar turns to 2014, everyone is busy thinking of new things they will do or changes they will make to become a better person.  I too fell to the pressure with One Little Word.  However, I plan to also remember to continue the parts of life that work well for me.  Instead of making "To Do" lists, it feels better to make "Today I did" lists.  Reading 50 minutes of fiction each night is pretty relaxing (and usually ends up to be more than 50 minutes) - #nerdlution.  Publishing at least one time each week on my blogs is doable.

Another part of my world I want to continue is using Twitter to share, learn, and collaborate.  You know I have an addiction as I've written about Twitter a lot.  At least it's an addiction that helps me to learn and grow in my profession.  When I stopped by Amy Rudd's blog and found her 10 top tweets for 2013, I thought I'd check mine out as well.  Here they are:

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Yep, I'm Going There: My One Little Word

It is only in adventure that some people succeed in knowing themselves - in finding themselves.  -Andre Gide (from Brainy-Quote)

It's a new year, but are we any different?
Standing in line at the grocery store this evening, I had to smile.  The magazines all featured pictures of the thin and fit.  Carts no longer contained sugar, cookies, snack food, and holiday beverages, instead everyone had Weight Watcher meals, vegetables, and grains.  Everybody waited in line wearing their "somehow I'm different today" looks as they strive to put their best foot forward in the new year.

I smile to myself, "Who are we kidding?" I wonder as I wait in the long check out line.  Every once in awhile I pull out a resolution or two, but for the most part I try not to fool myself.  I'm constantly trying to improve, don't get me wrong, but I'm probably not going to make it to the gym anymore than I did last year.  I'm probably going to drink just as much coffee and I can't really live without chocolate.

Many of my friends have been talking about choosing their One Little Word for the new year.  There has been talk on Twitter, Facebook and blogs about the words they'll let guide them for the year.  I tried this in 2012 with the word "gratitude."  Last year, I just decided to let the New Year roll by with no crazy promises.  As we said goodbye to 2013 and moved toward 2014 I considered a resolution, a word, a challenge (my 2011 fiasco), or something, but nothing really felt right.  I was quite fine with letting another New Year slip by without pomp and circumstance.

Then this morning I stopped by Tammy and Clare's post at Assessment in Perspective.  They were celebrating their new word.  You'll have to stop by their post, Celebrating Our One Little Word 2014, to find their words and some information about OLW.   Tammy talked about how her word was choosing her.  After reading their post, I decided to not really force a word (or a resolution or a new plan), but instead to see if it found me.

spinach, goat cheese, red pepper
crepe from Taste of Belgium 
My One Little Word
Today I talked my husband, Jeff, into venturing out before the cold came.  We've been entertaining for days and getting out of the house seemed a great idea.  We decided to go into Columbus to the Columbus Museum of Art to walk around for a bit.  It had been a very long time since we'd been there.  There was an interesting exhibition of Columbus artist, George Bellows, and a fun Lego exhibit.

After leaving the museum we meandered to the North Market.  As we walked around enjoying the afternoon sampling flavored popcorn, smelling spices, looking at different cheeses, sipping coffee, and checking out the variety of ethnic foods, my word hit me:  DISCOVER.

When we travel we usually find ourselves in a city.  I enjoy discovering new food, unique shops, historic sites, and the culture of an area.  I always wonder why I don't know as much about our own city as I do about all those we visit.  I could tell you more places to go in Boston, Chicago, Cincinnati, than I could suggest to you right where I live.

In the weeks to come I'm going to think about this word a little more.  I'm also going to think about what it means to me.  Though there are some things I'd like to find out more about, I think DISCOVERY, at least for me, will also be about those random surprises I find that make me want to dig a little deeper; the things that unexpectedly surprise and fascinate me.

Stay tuned
In the weeks to come I hope you'll hear more about my word.  I'm thinking on this blog you'll be hearing more about how the word plays out on the educational side of my life, and on Merely Day by Day I'll be sharing my life DISCOVERIES, but who knows.

The Lighter Side: Sunshine Award

During the past few weeks I have been nominated for a Sunshine Award by bloggers I admire greatly.  However, the busyness of the Christmas season has left me little time to read, write, or respond to posts.  Today is the first time I've had to sit down to catch up.  (Truth statement:  this took a few days to write.)  The Sunshine Award seemed like the perfect way to get back in the groove.

Here is a description for the Sunshine Award shared by Matt Renwick:
The Sunshine award gives others an opportunity to learn more about me as a blogger and then, in turn, I will send sunshine the way of 11 other amazing bloggers for you to get to know!

and the rules:
  • Acknowledge the nominating blogger.
  • Share 11 random facts about yourself.
  • Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.
  • List 11 bloggers. They should be bloggers you believe deserve some recognition and a little blogging love!
  • Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer and let all the bloggers know they have been nominated. (You cannot nominate the blogger who nominated you.)

Let's start with 11 random facts about me:
  • Fantasy sports are my new obsession.  
  • I am addicted to foofoo coffee.  If Starbucks wasn't so expensive I'd be there everyday for a marble mocha.  
  • Saturdays are my favorite days because I wake up early to read and write.  It is the one chunk of time I feel like I own.  (I guess it's the one chunk of time I've always owned....let's hear it for Saturday morning cartoons in the 70s.)  
  • I'm an advocate for public education.  I believe strongly in the power of public schools, when fairly/adequately funded and not bogged down by standardized testing, to be a positive place for learning.  I'm grateful to be working in a public school district that proves this daily by putting children first, trying to maintain balance in directives sent from state/federal officials who know little about teaching children, and working to create innovative learning environments.  
  • I love poetry.  Some of my favorite poets include Billy Collins, Ted Kooser, Maya Angelou, Robert Frost, and Langston Hughes.  I love when iTunes has a collection of audio poetry read by the poet.  
  • I guess you could say I am part of teaching family.  I am married to a teacher.  Jeff teaches 8th grade Language Arts.  My oldest daughter is now a teacher and teaches 8th grade Language Arts too.  My son is at The Ohio State University working toward is education degree in primary education.  (My youngest daughter is adamant she will major in business.)  My youngest brother teaches high school math, my brother-in-law teaches middle school science, and my other brother is a superintendent.  Family dinners are quite exciting.  
  • When spring arrives you will find me out in my flowerbeds working to prepare for the upcoming perennials and determining arrangements for the annuals I will sprinkle throughout.  
  • Right now there is snow on my patio, but it is my favorite place to be as soon as the weather starts to warm up. 
  • I spend too much time on Twitter.  I learn so much from the people who spend time sharing, collaborating, and asking thoughtful questions.  I find most of the books I plan to read by paying attention to the recommendations of the book lovers I follow.  
  • If I had the money, I would spend weekends traveling from city to city.  I enjoy checking out restaurants in cities, visiting museums, hearing about the history and getting a sense for the culture of an area.  
  • I miss my time with genealogy.  Several years ago I began researching my family history with the goal of finding all of my great great great grandparents.  I managed to accomplish this task and enjoyed the work so much that I began working on our family history.  Unfortunately, time in so many other things has taken me away from this work and I'd love to get back to it.  

Here are my answers to questions from the nominating blogs of , Matt RenwickJulie BalenRose CappelliFranki SibbersonRhonda Deighton, and Maureen Devlin.  I'm cheating a bit and picking from all of their pages.

1.  What songs/bands are on your favorite playlist right now?  (Matt)

I'm not very good at picking favorites as I like so many different artists and genres.  My iPod is full of a variety of genres of music by many different bands and artists.  Putting it on random shuffle is always worth a laugh or two.  However, I must admit to enjoying top 40 music.  Right now I'm loving listening to Royals by Pure Heroine, Let Her Go by Passenger, I Love It by Icona Pop, Counting Stars by One Republic.  My favorite bands/artists include:  Fun, Imagine Dragons, Adele, The Script.    

2.  Who are your favorite authors?  (Rose)

I probably read more nonfiction and poetry than most readers.  When I do read fiction I tend to read the books everyone is talking about.  My favorite adult fiction authors would include:  Amy Tan, Jodi Picoult, and Mitch Albom.  You know I have to also mention my favorite children's authors:  Kevin Henkes, Lester Laminack, Cynthia Rylant, Eve Bunting, Mem Fox, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, Todd Parr, and Oliver Jeffers.  You can read more about my favorite children's authors here and here.  

3.  What makes you laugh?  (Julie)

I love to laugh and I really don't do enough of it.  I enjoy going to comedy clubs, listening to comedians on my iPod, and watching really hilarious movies.  The funniest movies every??  Austin Powers, Anchorman, Bridesmaids, Meet the Fockers, You Me and Dupree.

4.  What is the best thing that happened to you this week?  (Franki)

Dinner at the Mad Mex and a movie, Anchorman II, with the hubby.

5.  Which 2-5 professional books were the most influential in molding you as a teacher? Explain. (Rhonda)

The first book was In the Middle by Nancie Atwell.  At the time, I was teaching sixth grade.  This book changed the way I thought about ownership in the classroom and helped me to see ways to make student learning authentic and purposeful.  The second book was Guided Reading by Fountas and Pinnell.  At this point, I had moved from sixth to first grade and really needed some help teaching emergent readers.  Other major professional reads:  Reading with Meaning by Debbie Miller, Opening Minds by Peter Johnston, and Digital Writing Workshop by Troy Hicks.

6.  What is your greatest professional challenge at this time?  (Maureen)

Balancing the collection of data from assessment with the forward movement of instruction.

7.  Apple or Microsoft?  (Matt)

Apple!  I suppose it started in my college years when we were learning to work with Macs.  Yes, the old Apple IICs.  Later we owned several Windows based computers, but dealt with so many problems often a result of virus protection/corruption. We began slowly moving back toward being an Apple based household.  I love the way my Apple devices work together and easily allow sharing.  They're a bit more user friendly.  I'm thankful to work in an Apple school where students easily move from device to device.  Apple systems are perfect for creating and sharing with others...and you just can't beat Apple's customer service.  

8.  What is the one skill you bring to a collaborative group that helps the group succeed?  (Maureen)

I'm able to synthesize the thoughts of others and put them together in a plan that moves us forward.  

9.  List three high points of 2013.  (Julie)

Choice Literacy retreat, #nerdcamp2013 (and #carpd), and a trip to Cincinnati.

10.  Is your favorite meal breakfast, lunch or dinner?  Why?  (Franki)

Lunch.  It's middle of the road.  It can be breakfasty, more like dinner, or light and refreshing.  There are so many different choices for lunch.  It can be hot or cold.  It's also usually a little lighter.  If you go out for lunch, you can usually find a lunch menu full of interesting combinations and reduced pricing.

11.  You are writing. Describe the scene.  Where do you write? Paper and pen, journal, notebook, or computer? Music or quiet? Office, den, living room? Desk or couch? (Rhonda)

If it's summer I am sitting on my patio with my computer most likely.  It has to be quiet so I get up earlier than everyone else to sneak a little time before the day begins at our house.  If it is winter, I'm probably on my couch sitting by my patio doors wishing it was warm enough to be outside.  At times, you will find me with my notebook and a purple pen with a medium tip or my NoteShelf app open.

Bonus Question:  If I wasn't an educator I would... (Matt)  

I really can't imagine doing anything else.  I'm glad I chose a profession that makes me happy.  It's much easier to get up every morning when you like what you are doing.  However, if I didn't teach I'd spend my time writing.  I enjoy writing.  If I had enough money that it wasn't necessary to work or if I had all the time needed to play and learn, I would love to dabble in writing children's books or poetry.

11 Questions

  1. When you look out the window or door of your house, what do you see?  (What's your favorite view?)
  2. Ocean or mountains?
  3. What is the best vacation you've ever taken?
  4. What is the best book you read in 2013?
  5. Who is your favorite book character?  Why?
  6. What is the one thing you wish you could have someone else to do for you?
  7. What inspires you?
  8. What do you make time for?
  9. If you could spend a month on any continent with your expenses paid, where would you go?  Why?
  10. What are your favorite games to play?
  11. If you could make one change in the world, what would you want to change?  
11 Invitations to Participate
I think this meme has been going for weeks and many blogs have been mentioned.  I'm going to share 11 bloggers who I wish posted more often or are just getting started that I look forward to following.  No pressure intended to blog more or to participate in this (this post takes a long time to write); just a shout-out to tell you I enjoy reading your writing.
  1. Tonya Buelow:  Learning, Growing, and Reflector Educator
  2. Nicole Kessler:  The Life of a Teacher;  Random Thoughts and Reflections 
  3. Valerie Ruckes:  The Sensibly Savvy Teacher
  4. Jacki Prati:  Teacher at Heart
  5. Katie Muhtaris:  Coffee Filled Musings
  6. Jackie Haworth:  Family Trove
  7. Kassia Owedekind:  Math Exchanges
  8. Kathleen Gillis:  Gillis and Her Big Mouth
  9. Cathryn Petticrew:  Principal Reflections
  10. Karen Szymusiak:  Talkworthy
  11. Katie DiCesare:  Creative Literacy