Do You Like Children?

Not everyone does, you know. Some adults think that those little human “beans” should sprout somewhere else, anywhere but in their close proximity.

Yes, children are loud and can irritate and inflame every nerve to the point where anti-inflamatories don’t work.

Children are curious to a fault – “How come?” “Why do I haf-ta?” “What’s that?” Those questions sometimes makes us grown-ups feel stupid because we don’t always have the internet at hand for research.

But I know that children are magic.

They help us remember what our long-ago years were like.

They remind us of that feeling of satisfaction when the “ah-ha!” moments pop out of nowhere land.

They refill our imagination bucket with all kinds of sweet nuggets of creativity.

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Three years ago and four grandchildren later, ribbons of creativity, once hidden in my DNA, have sprouted again. Thanks to those growing “beans,” the product of their influence is now available here.

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Thank you for taking a look.

Dumbest Teacher

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The first day of school, I’m sitting in the back hoping she won’t see me. But she does.

“Cono,” she says, “Sit on up here in front, where I can keep’n eye on you-uh.”

I hate it when she says “you-uh,” like it’s two words instead of one.

Mrs. Berry doesn’t like anything I do. She doesn’t like the way I look, the way I walk, the way I smell, the way I put on my shoes. Well, I don’t like her neither. She stares at me with the corner of her crinkled up eyes, just to find something else she doesn’t like.

“Cono, you’re pressin‘ down too hard with that pencil, you’re gonna break it.” “Cono, I can barely read what you’re writing, it looks invisible.” “Cono, you-uh got something to say or don’t ya?”

She thinks that she’s higher and mightier than God Jesus himself. She walks with her nose so far up in the air that, if she were a turkey, she’d drown. Turkey’s do that. They’re so stupid that if it starts raining, they look up to see what’s dropping on them and sniff!. That’s all it takes. They’ve plumb drown in a drop of rain. You’d think they would have caught on after a while. Like they would have seen their loved ones plop down dead after looking up, that they’d be onto something. No way. They ever look up just to see the pretty stars? Nah. They only look up when it’s raining. Sniff!

The only thing dumber than a turkey is the man that owns them and he’s dumber than a box’a hammers. Just like Mrs. Berry and Principal Pall.

 

Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper by C. Dennis-Willingham

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via Invisible

“Eternity Don’t Sound So Good”

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It’s Sunday, revival time at the Baptist church. I don’t like it much, but the punch and cookies are good, that is if I can hold my patience until the end when all the “amen-ing” is done.

I stuff those cookies in my mouth two at a time. “Gracious me, Cono,” says Mrs. Allridge, “looks like you ain’t eaten anything for a month.”

Almost every time I get to one of those revivals, the grownups say, “Cono, don’t you want to be saved?”

“From what?” I say.

“Why the Devil hisself,” they say and then they add a bunch of amen’s to go along with it.

Unless they’re thinking about my Dad being the Devil, I just say, “No thank you.”

“But what are you waitin for? We could baptize you right now and all your sins would be forgiven and you would have eternal life.”

As far as sinning goes, I guess I’ve done my fair share of it, Amen.

“What’s eternal mean?” I ask.

“Well, it means you’ll live forever with Jesus right next to you.”

I picture Jesus standing right next to me, while I was thunk, thunk, thunkin’ on a woodpile forever and ever into eternity. And it doesn’t appeal to me one iota. Last year when we lived with Aunt Nolie, I didn’t have much chopping to do. But now, I have to chop all the time, Chop, chop to make sure Mother has enough wood for the cookstove at the Tourist Court. Chop, chop so Dad won’t lay into me.

Anyway, I’ve heard stories about how some churches take a poor person’s last dime, so they can put more gold up by the Jesus statue. Then, a penny-less old woman with only one shoe and five starving children crawls away with her head all covered up, as if she’s ashamed of being broke.

It doesn’t make no sense to me whatsoever. It seems to me that Jesus would want you to keep most of your money, so you don’t have to starve and die and can at least make it to church to pray. What gets me is watching them churchgoers and knowing that they talk all big about Jesus, but when they get home, they just keep doing their sinning anyway, like they’d forgotten every word they’d learned.

Maybe all you have to do is say you believe in Jesus and then you’ll be saved no matter how you act. But what do I know? I ain’t been saved yet.

Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper by C. Dennis-Willingham

 

 

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via Patience

More than a Bloody Moon

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Dad is slumped over on me now; half of his weight is on my right side, my right arm under his. I walk him to his side of the bed hoping Mother won’t wake up and see how drunk he is, see the blood I didn’t get the chance to wipe off his face. He lies down and is out cold. He’s good for the night.

I go into my room and see Delma asleep on her bed. I lie down on mine and stare up at the ceiling. A dim light comes through my window. The half-moon pays me a visit, casts shadows of a kid named Cono who never could beat Hicks Boy.

Well, I guess Dad has met his own Hicks Boy.

I can’t believe I’m not jumping up and down, celebrating. I feel kinda sorry for him, my dad beaten by a cue stick. The same man who, to my knowledge, never lost a fight except for in the boxing ring with Shorty Houghton when I was three years old.

I also feel pretty good that I was there for him, did something for him that maybe he’ll remember. But it doesn’t really matter if he remembers. I will. For the first time, I felt useful to him.

I hear Mother scream. I snap back into the present, out of my daydream. Maybe she’s woken up, has seen blood on her sheets reflected in moonlight, seen the blood on Dad’s face.

I start to get up but the quiet has taken over. I think I might just go back to sleep but the silence only lasts for a moment.

Excerpt from No Hill for a Stepper by C. Dennis-Willingham

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via Dim

Lessons from the Fox

He was undu-ly-late 

but that didn’t stop him from making his presence known to The Little Prince.

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And in excerpts, the fox said:

I am a fox.

I cannot play with you. I am not tamed.

It is an act too often neglected. It means to establish ties.

To me, you are still nothing more than a little boy who is just like a hundred thousand other little boys. And I have no need of you. And you, on your part, have no need of me. To you, I am nothing more than a fox like a hundred thousand other foxes. But if you tame me, then we shall need each other. To me, you will be unique in all the world. To you, I shall be unique in all the world . . .

My life is very monotonous … Think how wonderful that will be when you have tamed me! The grain, which is also golden, will bring me back the thought of you. And I shall love to listen to the wind in the wheat . . .”

And now here is my secret, a very simple secret: It is only with the heart that one can see rightly; what is essential is invisible to the eye.

“What is essential is invisible to the eye,” the little prince repeated, so that he would be sure to remember.

photo credit 

via Undulate

Make it Personal

“It’s true that everything has its Personal Legend,

but one day that Personal Legend will be realized.

So each thing has to transform itself into something better,

and to acquire a new Personal Legend,

until someday,

the Soul of the World becomes one thing only.”

 

Page 150 in Paulo Coelho’s The Alchemist, one of my favorite books.

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daily post prompt: Legend

When Craving Attacks

What do you do if you love fabric but can’t sew, want to paint but don’t feel like bringing out the oils and a large canvas?

I created this piece, “Books on the Beach,” for my granddaughter. I made these tiny books 3-D so she could actually look inside. The fabric in the clothes basket is real. Best part? I got both paint and glue on my hands! Yah!

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Here’s a better view of the 3-D books:

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Time to make one for my 2-year-old grandson!