Monday, 12 August 2019

Poetry Monday: A Childhood Hero

It's Poetry Monday, and the topic this week is ....... A CHILDHOOD HERO.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, Mimi, Diane, and me as we reveal the heroes of our youth. You are welcome to leave your poem in the comments or post on your own blog; if you do the latter, please leave a note in the comments so we can find you. Use the topic, or choose another -- just have fun with the process and keep your brain humming along.

*****

I pondered the topic all week and just couldn't get inspired, I'm afraid. Despite having a caring family, good adults in my community, and good teachers at school, I didn't think of them as heroes and I didn't want to follow precisely in the footsteps of any of them.

Maybe I'm stubborn, or independent, or just using too narrow a definition of the word "hero".

Maybe they were all heroes.

But my brain continues to be as empty as . . . a bird's nest in December . . . a politician's address to the people . . . a squeezed sponge of water . . . (for more similes, click here)


*****

I'm Ready For My Ten Lashes With A Wet Noodle Now

When I tried to write about a childhood hero
All I came up with was a big fat zero

*****

Knowing I wasn't getting anywhere with the topic, I felt even more reluctant than usual when I thought about Monday approaching.

I'll let these memes drive the point home . . .


















And that concludes this edition of Poetry Monday -- whew!

It must be my turn to provide a topic for next week . . . how about CAMPING . . .

 

Good luck!

Wednesday, 7 August 2019

Topic For Next Poetry Monday

Hello, Poetry People!

To be sure we are all on the same page, I wanted to clarify that the topic for next week is A Childhood Hero, suggested by Diane.

I've updated my post for this week to reflect this.

Onward with sharpened pencils -- or shiny keyboards -- we go!



Hopefully I haven't caused you to feel like this . . .


Tuesday, 6 August 2019

Poetry Monday on Tuesday: Thunder And Lightning And Rain .......

It's Poetry Monday on Tuesday, and this week's topic is a mouthful:  THUNDER AND LIGHTNING AND RAIN ..... and as Delores added, "OH MY!"

What trouble can we get into with this topic? Come along with Delores, Mimi, Diane (yes! she's back!), and me to find out. (MotherOwl is on summer break at the moment.)

If you have a poem you'd like to contribute, you may leave it in the comments or post it on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment so we'll know where to find you.

Use the topic or not --- just have fun and exercise your brain cells. Writing poetry is like taking your brain for a jog! (or in my case, a stroll ... but every bit counts)

*****

The phrase "thunder and lightning" has been rolling around in my head since last Poetry Monday, and what kept emerging was a fragment of the lyrics from a very snappy song from 1966, covered and taken to #1 in the U.S. in 1979 by Amii Stewart, called Knock On Wood, which you can hear -- and see -- here.  I thought if I looked up the song on YouTube I might get it out of my head and then proceed with the poetry topic.

I found the video a wee bit cringey at first, because of the gold lame and incessant hip action, but then something happened right at the 2:07 mark, when I began to realize just how talented Amii Stewart and her backup guys were as dancers. They had impressive precision, flexibility, and stamina. Those moves are not easy at that pace.

How would I even begin to know that? Well, the video reminded me of the aerobics classes I took in the 80s, except I wore shorts and T-shirt instead of high heels and yards of gauze like Amii did.

I really liked aerobics. It was similar to Jazzercize and Zumba which came along later, but back then it was a new and different kind of exercise and very much connected with the high energy, beat-driven music of that era. I was in the best shape of my life when I took those classes.

Aaaaaaaand that's when I knew the topic had grabbed me and taken me down a completely different road than I expected.

Join me, then, as I go back to the days when I had one toddler, a slim physique, and a twice-a-week date with twenty or so other ladies and some great rhythmic music to jump and crash around to . . .

*****

Get On Yer Pink Tights And Aqua Bodysuits, Folks

After our toddlers were parked at day care
And after ascending two steep flights of stairs
We ladies would spend forty minutes to sweat
A privilege we paid out good money to get

Most of us worked to get back into shape
After having our babies had made us gain weight
The funniest part -- looking back, anyhow --
Is how skinny I actually was (unlike now)

Led by a boot-camp instructor wannabe
We marched and we kicked and we jumped -- oh did we!
The beat of the music propelled us along
And we felt energized by each high-octane song

A-one and a-two and a-three and a-four
We thundered like rhinos upon that gym floor
A-five and a-six and a-seven and a-eight
Our adrenaline surged, as did every heart rate

I can still hear those songs in the back of my mind
They transport me back to a very good time:
Hall and Oates, Blondie, Donna Summer, and Queen
Dolly and Joan Jett, J. Geils and Irene

In fact, as I sit on my chair, here and now
I'm thinking of how I can get back that "wow"
So excuse me; I'm going to dig up some songs
And head back to the eighties where I think I belong


I didn't dress like this but some did, headband and legwarmers and all



*****

I went off topic again, didn't I? But I did use "thundered" -- did you spot it?

I'm thrilled that Diane has re-joined Poetry Monday -- it was her idea to begin with and Delores and the rest of us were just keeping it going in her absence. The link to her blog is at the beginning of this post. Welcome back, Diane!

And next week's topic, courtesy of Diane, is going to be ............. A CHILDHOOD HERO ................... Good luck! 



 

Monday, 5 August 2019

Poetry Monday: ......... postponed

Due to temporary lack of brain, Poetry Monday at the Procrastinating Donkey blog has been postponed to Tuesday.

Thank you for checking in; here is a consolation prize:


Me and my brain


Until tomorrow . . .

Monday, 29 July 2019

Poetry Monday: The Moon

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is . . . THE MOON.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, Mimi, and me as we contemplate this heavenly marvel and pen our thoughts. The fiftieth anniversary of the moon landing has just been celebrated, so it seems like a good time to think about our closest celestial neighbour.

If you have a poem to offer, you may leave it in the comments or post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please let us know in the comments how to find you so we can come along and applaud. Use the topic, or not -- the object is to have fun and exercise our brain cells :)

*****

First, to set the mood for my poem, and because he is my hero, I would like to present a somewhat relevant poem by the great Ogden Nash:


A Caution To Everybody
   by Ogden Nash

Consider the auk;
Becoming extinct because he forgot how to fly, and could only walk.
Consider man, who may well become extinct
Because he forgot how to walk and learned how to fly before he thinked.

*****

If you think that sounds like rather faint praise for aviation, I think you're right. And I would take it one step further.

Although I found the moon landing fascinating, I do not approve! No, not at all. We cannot even take care of our home planet; what makes anyone believe that we will take care of any other body in space?

In fact, it has been estimated that mankind has, for various reasons, left 187,400 kilograms (413,100 lb) of material on the moon, including ninety-six bags of human waste.  You can read more about it here (total materials) and here (poop), if you have the stomach for it.

I'm shaking my head here. I'm shaking it so vigorously I bet you can feel the vibrations all the way to wherever you are, can't you?

It's not that I don't believe in science. I believe in science like anything, people. I just think we should first be doing science that repairs and advances what we have here on Earth before we start sprinting off to other places in space.

And it's not that I don't appreciate the mysteries of the universe, either. I appreciate them like nobody's business. My favourite time of day is dusk, when the curtain opens on the stars and the moon, and the vastness of all that lies beyond our planet starts to reveal itself. It leaves me in awe every single time, and sometimes in tears of wonder.

But our planet does the same. And shouldn't it? How can so many be so casual about the damage we've inflicted on our precious home?

Questions, people. I got 'em.

And a poem. I got that, too.



*****


The Moon Was Just The Beginning . . .

What have we done to our marvellous Earth?
We've starved it and scourged it and plundered its worth
We're killing the beasts of the land and the sea
And killing each other for power and money

The lessons are clear for the souls who dare look
But lost on the ones with no conscience to brook

And now we are focused on living on Mars . . . . . . . .

Shouldn't we fix first the planet that's ours?
 





*****

Yeah, yeah, I know - my poem wasn't really about the moon after all, was it? Even though I tried to cheat by putting "moon" in the title. But as the instructions up above say, use the topic or not, and I chose to use it as a stepping stone to what I found most important in my heart when I sat down to write.

Thank you, as always, for reading.

I hope you have a week full of wonder and awe, filled with natural beauty and quiet happiness.

*****

Next week's topic is ........... THUNDER AND LIGHTNING AND RAIN .... OH MY!




 

Monday, 22 July 2019

Poetry Monday: Things That Cool Us Down ........ and Funnies

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is . . . . . . . . . . THINGS THAT COOL US DOWN.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we chill out over this topic. If we do our job well, you'll shiver with the thrill of a poem well made. (When was the last time a poem made you shiver?? Ah, well.)

You can leave a poem in the comments, or post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please let us know in the comments so we can come along and applaud. Use the topic, or not - your choice. Have fun!

*****

I am writing this in the final hours of Sunday evening because I had a busy week (and weekend) at work and didn't get around to "pome-ing" until now. The heat and humidity were overpowering here yesterday and the earlier part of today, so this was a great topic for this week.

Luckily, we had a terrific downpour a few hours ago and things are much cooler now. I guess "rainstorm" is one thing that cools people down.

But it's not as if you can just order up a rainstorm anytime the weather gets hot. So what are some other ways to get cooled off?

Oh, look, here's a poem to explain it all! It's a short one, because I'm running out of time, and also I stupidly just closed my finger in the door and it hurts to type :)

*****

Be The Coolest Cat Around

Sit in a kiddy pool
Swim in a lake
Slurp up a popsicle
Eat ice cream cake
Jump in the shower
Sit by a fan
Run through a sprinkler
Do 'em all if you can

And if you have plenty
Of money to spend
Go live somewhere cold
Until the heat ends! 



Also, sunglasses make you cool, but in a different way.

 

*****

Some of these funnies have snow, which is another great way to get cool. Except . . . if it's snowing, you're probably not feeling terribly hot. It's a conundrum, isn't it?



This is clearly how you can afford to move somewhere else.



Snowmen are cool. Snow dogs are cool too.



Kitty thinks the melted spot is a box. Or kitty does not like the cold snow. Or both.



Kitty is not happy. I think kitties in general like summer better than winter.

 

I just hope his humans appreciated his work.

 

Bill is so suspicious!! He's behaving just like a cat!!

 

Yum!

 

That is one cool bear.

 

But it would be so nice and cool . . .

 

Oh, all right! Five more minutes.

 *****

I hope your weather is treating you kindly. 

Next week's topic will be . . . THE MOON (in honour of the 50th anniversary of the first moon landing, July 20, 1969) . . . a little late, but I had to wait for my turn to suggest a topic. lol

Good luck.

 


Monday, 15 July 2019

Poetry Monday: Notes

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is . . . . . NOTES.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and I as we scribble our thoughts on little scraps of . . . er . . . computer screen . . . er . . . *analogy falls flatter than a half-cooked souffle in a cold breeze*

Never mind. We all know what happens on Poetry Monday. You, too, can be a part of this. Leave your poem in the comments or post on your own blog. Use the topic, or not. Try a two line poem, a Haiku, a non-rhyming poem, an epic thousand word poem . . . . anything at all. Or just enjoy what we're offering.

*****

There were so many directions to go with this topic. Delores mentioned a few in her comment here last week. She suggested musical notes, notes to the butcher, hold-up notes . . . that last one really got my attention.

Imagine if bank robbers wrote their demands in rhyme. I wonder what those notes would look like?

Maybe:

Fill the bag with cash
Or your fingers I will mash

or:

Put the money in the sack
Or your head I'll surely whack

or, if they're trying to cut down on the violence:

Please fill the bag with money
And I'll thank you, honey bunny

I have to admit, I tried to write a poem that would incorporate the sad back story of the thief, who I imagined had earned a Bachelor of Arts and was trying to make it as a poet, but, being unsuccessful, was driven to a life of crime, and poured out his talent in his hold-up notes . . . but it wasn't jelling, so I turned instead to my own stacks of notes that I can't throw away because they're ALL useful or necessary (or are they?), and this is what came out.

*****

I Knew What It Said When I Wrote It

My stack of tiny notes is now quite dangerously high
Most of them embody things I wish to keep close by
Ideas, thoughts, and brainwaves that will never come again
Jobs to do, and names of books, and how to reach a friend
Crafts I'd like to research, and jokes I want to tell
Things I need to mail away and things I need to sell

But some of them are useless and of that there is no doubt --
My penmanship's so awful that I cannot make them out



It's okay, kitty. I'll read your notes to you, if you'll write mine for me.

(Photo: icanhas.cheezburger.com)



*****


Wishing you a noteworthy week, one and all :)

Next week's topic is ......... THINGS THAT COOL YOU DOWN.

Good luck!


Monday, 8 July 2019

Poetry Monday: Gardening

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ..........GARDENING........

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we dig for inspiration, plant idea seeds, and tend our poems with loving care. Hopefully you enjoy the bloomin' good verses we come up with and also hopefully they weren't watered with tears of frustration :)

You can do it too -- leave a poem in the comments, or post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment so we can find you and applaud. Use the topic, or another of your choosing -- the idea is to have fun and exercise our gray matter.


*****

I plant flowers each summer but it's been awhile since I had a vegetable garden. My place of work is busy in late spring, making it hard to find the time to plant early enough to harvest anything in our short growing season.

You may also remember that deer often visit our yard, and they consider young garden plants to be delicious appertifs.  This year they have even come up onto our front step to eat the blossoms of my geraniums -- the muddy hoofprints gave them away. I don't want to go to all the trouble of putting in a garden just to feed the deer.

But this year I had a plan.

The deck on the back of our house is too high for the deer to reach, so I decided to do some pot gardening. No no no, not that kind of pot; while marijuana is legal in Canada now, I have zero interest in growing it, smoking it, or eating it.

I meant the kind of pot you plants things in, of course.

What did I plant? A cherry tomato plant, a zucchini plant, three cucumber plants, some peas, some lettuce, and some micro-greens.

So ........ the crops are in, the crops are up, and in some cases, the crops already have fruit or vegetables on them. They're tiny, but they're there.

It just goes to show, you should never give up on your dreams.

Unless the squirrels and/or the birds get at your dreams and wreck them.

THEN, I might give up. Stay tuned.


*****

Never Throw In The Trowel 

(Sung to the tune of "If you're happy and you know it, clap your hands")

If you haven't got the time, never plant.
If the deer eat all your work, never plant.
If you haven't got the time and the deer eat all your work
If they drive you quite berserk, never plant.

If you get the urge to plant, squash it down.
If you want to buy some seeds, squash it down.
If you get the urge to plant and you want to buy some seeds
If you'd even welcome weeds, squash it down.

If the urge to plant gets strong, buy a pot.
If it's in you like a song, buy a pot.
If the urge to plant gets strong and it's in you like a song
If not planting just seems wrong, buy a pot.

Now your pots are full of plants: Hip Hooray!
Now your plants have grown a bunch: Hip Hooray!
Now your pots are full of plants and your plants have grown a bunch
Now go eat your home-grown lunch: Hip Hooray!



Bunnies could also be an issue, even if the squirrels and birds behave.




Thank goodness we have indoor cats . . . Wait, the neighbours have outdoor cats . . .




Six inches apart? That won't be enough!!




I wouldn't mind growing a cat instead of a cucumber; no, sir.



*****

Wishing you a week with good things springing up in front of your eyes as if by magic, and without any awful earworms such as "if you're happy and you know it, clap your hands" ......

Next week's topic for Poetry Monday will be ..... NOTES.

Good luck!


Monday, 1 July 2019

Poetry Monday: Drone

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ............ DRONE.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we take on this word that can mean such different things, including:
- a continuous low humming sound
- a part of a musical instrument that emits a constant sound (such as a pipe in a set of bagpipes or a string on a sitar)
- a male bee
- a remote-controlled pilotless aircraft

Surely to goodness it can't be too hard to dash off a few choice lines on this versatile word, right? RIGHT??

We'll see :)

You can leave a poem in the comments or post it on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment so we know where to find you and your offering. Use the topic, or another of your choosing -- just have fun and make those little brain cells work to earn their keep!

*****

My first thought when I see the word "drone" is a variation on the first of the meanings above.

I think we've all had the experience of being in a classroom or at an event where somebody at the front of the room has the rest of the people in the room trapped like bugs in a bottle while he or she does the talking.

That's real power, my friends.

A great speaker is a rare and pleasant thing. A poor speaker with uninspiring material and apathetic delivery, on the other hand, can make even the kindest and most understanding of souls think dark thoughts and wish for toothpicks to prop their eyelids open.

*****

Please Pass The Sledgehammer

Even speakers well-known
Have been oft heard to drone
Leaving listeners to moan
And organizers to groan

This is not to condone
Walking out on a drone
But I wouldn't bemoan
Being swapped with a clone



Here we all are, under those circumstances:



And for those who prefer pictures rather than video:



Video clip and meme found on icanhas.cheezburger.com.

*****


 Wishing you all a good week, free from the need for toothpicks :)

Over to you, Delores; what's the topic for next week??

Update:  GARDENING is next week's prompt. Good luck!




Monday, 24 June 2019

Poetry Monday: Portals

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ........... PORTALS.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we peer into this topic and transport you to another realm with our portal poetry ... hopefully ...

You can leave a poem in the comments, or post on your own blog. If you do the latter, please leave a comment so we know how to find you and your poem. Feel free to use the given topic or any other topic of your choosing; the idea is to have fun and make our brains fire a little faster.

*****

I was unsure how to approach this topic at first. While I enjoy science fiction, I haven't read anything about portals for a long, long time. Are there portals in the Harry Potter books? I don't read them, so I don't know. But Delores gave me a few tips over on her blog Mumblings, and that helped.

And then one day I was watching our cat Lulu play inside a large brown paper bag, and my path forward was suddenly clear.

Lulu doesn't consider what she does in that large brown paper bag to be "play". She's completely serious when she enters that portal, and uses all eighteen of her claws to attack whatever is on the other side.

(Just between you and me, the only thing in that bag when I looked inside was a piece of kitty litter, but I think human eyes and kitty eyes see things differently.)

*****

i am feerce kat

in my kingdom
i rool benev  benoval
kindly
with velvet paw

there is much peece
but there is wun place
uv grate danger
full uv monsters

i gard portal vall  valyia
bravely
and i battul monsters
with all my mite

they are feerce
but i am feercer
i keep my subjet  subjekt  peepul safe
and i do not get a singul scratch

rawrrrrr



Lulu guarding the portal to monsterland. She was feeling self-conscious here because she doesn't like to have her picture taken. You should have seen her after she wrote that poem, though -- talk about self-confidence!!



Apologies to those whose mother tongue is not English; the kitty's spelling is not good. I hope it makes sense to you :)

*****

Wishing you a peeceful week with zero monsters to battul.


Next week's topic is ............... DRONE .......... Good luck!




Wednesday, 19 June 2019

Close Encounters Of The Bird Kind

A few weeks ago, I went for my usual afternoon walk along the river near our home. I stopped at the lookoff, which is built high on the river bank.


Taken facing away from the river, so as to capture the cat and shadows of the railing.


This particular day I was facing the other way, looking out over the water. Right away a couple of chickadees flitted into view, and perched in the bare branches of the bushes that grow up close to the railing. One was looking directly at me, at eye level and only an arm's length away, still chattering -- and before I could  do any more than wish in vain that my camera was turned on, he had flown to me and landed on my head.

On my HEAD, people!!

Unsure of his intentions, and not wishing to have my head pecked at or pooped on, I carefully reached up and that was enough to make him fly off. I still don't know what he was after; maybe he wanted some hair or maybe I looked like a gigantic piece of bird seed. It was shocking and delightful all rolled into one.

Not long after that, I had a different kind encounter, this time at a strip mall, the kind where stores are accessed from outside rather than inside the building. I had bought a small bag of chips to ward off hunger pangs until I could finish my errands, and was walking along the sidewalk in front of the mall, headed for my car.

I'd already noticed a couple of seagulls flying around the parking lot, shrieking insanely, as gulls do, and I was feeling sorry for them having to scrounge food in that way and at the same time idly wondering how good their eyesight was. I'm not sure why, because it was very out of character for me to do something so poorly thought through, or to litter, but I decided to test their eyesight by dropping a chip beside the sidewalk, as if by accident, figuring they'd see it sooner or later and clean it up.

They saw it Sooner, and started shrieking even louder to alert all their buddies from the far side of the parking lot. They swooped down, far too close for comfort, and looked at me with their beady little eyes. I started walking faster, but I thought I'd better drop some more chips so they would stop following me and eat instead.

All that did was attract more gulls, so I dropped some more chips. By then I was almost to my car, and walking very fast for an old girl. I swear those gulls were still looking at me as I sat in my car, sneaking the three chips that were left in the bag (it was small, remember? really small). I tried to be completely invisible, not only to make the birds go away, but in case anyone was watching my stupidity.

Not my brightest idea, and not my finest moment. Let's call this encounter shocking and educational.

I certainly know for sure now that gulls have formidable eyesight.


The head honcho of the seagulls was this close to me, but looked a lot less friendly and a lot more focused. (Source: Pixabay)


Have you had any close enounters of the wild animal kind lately?

And did you ever see the movie Close Encounters of the Third Kind, which I ripped off adapted for the title of today's post?




Monday, 17 June 2019

Poetry Monday: Mail

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is .........MAIL.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we bring our poems to you Special Delivery!

You can post your poem in the comments or on your blog; if you do the latter, please leave a comment so we know where to find you.

Use the topic, or not; the idea is to have fun and maybe give your brain a workout.

*****

Without any preamble this week (I'm fine, I'm fine, don't worry, ha ha), here is my effort.


*****

We're More Alike Than Different

No matter the means of delivery--
Pony express or technology--
All of humanity feels a real thrill
When the mail brings a letter instead of a bill.


Does your mailbox look like one of these? (Source: Pixabay)

 *****

And some mail-related funnies from icanhas.cheezburger.com . . . . . .




























*****

Next week's topic is ............ PORTALS ............... thank you, Delores.


Wishing you some good mail this week :)




Monday, 10 June 2019

Poetry Monday: Mosquitoes

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is ...... MOSQUITOES.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we delve into this topic. You can post a poem in the comments or on your own blog; if you do the latter, please leave a comment so we know where to find you. Use the topic or not -- it's all in fun and it's good exercise for the brain.

*****

Mosquitoes.

Tiny but deadly.

What's worse than turning out the light and climbing into bed after a long summer day and hearing ...... hmmmmmmmmmmmmmm ..... all around your face? You know you won't be getting any sleep until you (1) donate blood, or (2) kill the critter.

But in the dark, it's hard to know just where to aim. And when the droning stops, things just get worse. You know the flying hypodermic needle has landed and is about to pierce your skin. You wait for the tiny prickling sensation that tells you it has started to insert its pointy proboscis, and slap yourself silly.

Hoping you've landed a death blow, you settle down to sleep again.

Ahhhhhh. Peace and quiet.

And then .............. hmmmmmmmmmmmmm ...........

It's either Lucky Lindy back again . . . or a half a dozen of her friends who've arrived for the funeral.

I say "Lucky Lindy" because, as we are often told, it's only the females who want to drink our blood. I personally have probably killed thousands of mosquitoes during my life and I bet half of them were innocent. But who can tell if a hovering mosquito is male or female?

Smack it! Smack it dead!


*****

My Hypocrisy

Oh, woe betide the soulless schmuck
Who kicks a dog or shoots a duck

Or pins a wriggling butterfly
Or from such things does turn his eye

My scorn for such a savage jerk
Is merited by his vicious work

. . . But I don't turn a hair and I don't say No
When somebody kills a mos-quit-o


*****

While searching for an appropriate mosquito-related picture, I came across some additional helpful information.


First, this:






And this: (but be sure to read the punch line. We don't want a rash of spoon burns going around the internet.)


*****

Wishing you a week free of things that bug you :)


Next week's topic is ........... MAIL ........... Good luck!





Monday, 3 June 2019

Poetry Monday: Stitches

It's Poetry Monday, and this week's topic is . . . STITCHES.

Join Delores, MotherOwl, and me as we wrack our brains for something to write about this topic . . . or is that just me who had to root around in my brain like a kid looking for all the pieces to a small toy in a full-to-overflowing toy box??


made of stitches and cuteness



There are so many kinds of stitches . . . sewing, knitting, crocheting, cross-stitch, crewel work, stitches that doctors use to sew us up, getting a stitch in your side if you run too long, being "in stitches" over something funny, and being without a stitch of clothing.

What to write about?

Having an interest in sewing (which you may have guessed from last week's post), I should be writing about sewing stitches.  Instead, I decided to talk about the dark side of sewing -- unpicking stitches. This is the most boring, frustrating, time-consuming, and apt-to-go-sideways part of a sewing job, in my opinion. I need to have a good rant about it, and now I have the perfect excuse :)

Why would a person ever want to unpick stitches? Well, if you make a mistake while sewing, or if you want to let out a seam or hem to make a piece of clothing bigger or longer, or if you want to take apart a garment in order to re-make or repair it, you're going to need to rip out the old stitching first.

Here's the tool you need when you're unpicking stitches:

the handy seam ripper


Looks harmless and effective, right?

Well, the same little pointy part that is supposed to slip under a stitch can also easily slip under a thread of the fabric, especially when the thread and fabric are the same colour -- which will result in a hole in the fabric -- and also especially when you get older and your eyes aren't quite as sharp as they used to be. The sharp blade can also put a neat little slice in the fabric if it slips.

And if you have carpal tunnel problems? Holding that tool makes your hand go numb in less than a minute, which isn't enough time to unpick one average seam.

Enough, enough! I can rant just as well in rhyme!


*****

The Horrible, Awful, No Good, Very Bad Sewing Day *

I sewed a seam so straight and true
But then those jeans did not fit you
. . . So I ripped it out.

I sewed two pockets to the butt
But then I saw I'd sewn them shut
. . . So I ripped them out.

I sewed the hems to their new length
They were too short -- Oh! give me strength!
. . . So I ripped them out.

I sewed the zipper (what a chore!)
It opened upside down. (I swore.)
. . . And then I ripped it out.

The drudgery of sewing seams
Was lessened by machines, no doubt
But what I wish for now would be
An automatic ripper-out .......


*Apologies to Sesame Street's Grover and his book "Grover's Bad, Awful Day", which is the version of the story I'm familiar with, and also to Judith Voirst and her book "Alexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day" which I suspect inspired the Grover version . . .  

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Wishing you a week wherein you have more than a stitch of clothing to wear, you are in stitches at something funny in your life, and you avoid medical stitches.

Next week's topic will be ......... MOSQUITOES ......... courtesy of Delores - thanks, D!





Monday, 27 May 2019

Poetry Monday: The Tool Shed

It's Poetry Monday, and the topic this week is . . . THE TOOL SHED.

Join Delores, Mother Owl, and me as we nail our topic this week, hammer it home, and deliver solid, well-built poems that will shelter us from all weathers.

. . . poems that will WHAT now??

Sometimes analogies just don't work the way I think they will.

Moving along.

You can leave a poem in the comments or post on your own blog; if you do the latter, please leave a comment to let us know where to find you. (Pssst! You can even post a poem that's not yours, as long as you tell us who wrote it!)

Use the topic, or not. The objective is to have fun and get the brain cells working.

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You might be expecting a poem about a traditional tool shed, a little building out behind the house filled with garden rakes and shovels and maybe a lawn mower and a workbench with hammers and saws and bottles of nails and that sort of thing.

That's the first thing that came to my mind, too. But there's never been one of those in my life, ever, so I was a bit lost as to what could be written about it.

And then, a dim bulb brightened as it occurred to me that I just bought my own tool shed.

Oh yes I did. Here's a picture:





Yep, as soon as I get it cleaned up, my sewing tools will be going in there, so while it's officially a sewing basket, it's basically just a miniature tool shed, right? 

This came from the local second-hand store. I've wanted one exactly like this for a long time and when I saw the $10 price tag I knew it was coming home with me. It needed two screws replaced in the handle, but that was a simple matter for my husband to do, and with the help of a little Murphy's Oil Soap, it will be ready to use shortly.

Look how much room there is:



I already have a sewing basket, standard size, but I ran out of room in it long ago. I can hardly wait to fill this one. Then, my old friend -- much more portable -- will hold only the essentials I need to fix a hem or a loose button.



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Roomy Enough For All My Memories, Too

Into my sewing basket
I will place
Pinking shears from my mom
Straight pins and measuring tape
From high school sewing class
Bobbins and thread
Needles for my sewing machine
Needles for hand sewing
Thimbles and needle threaders
Scissors of all sizes
Hand drawn patterns for small crafts
Pincushions
And my sweet little pin dish
For stabbity items
And an old spice bottle for safe storage
Of bent and broken stabbity items

You may s-a-a-y I'm a weirdo*
But I'm not the only one**
All you sewists out there
Will understand my utter delight . . .




*Sorry, Mr. Lennon, for taking your beautiful lyrics and changing them
** Sorry again, although this time I didn't change them, I just stole them


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Here's my old faithful basket. It's so full it won't shut, and I have boxes of stuff besides that.




And here's the spice bottle for bent and broken stabbity things (you can push them through the holes in the inner cap, and they won't easily fall out if the bottle tips over without the lid on), along with one of my pincushions and one of my measuring tapes:




Finally, my pin dish, which I wrote about before (I can't find the post, but you're not really missing anything):




What can I say? I enjoy simple things.

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Next week's poetry topic is . . . . . . . . . STITCHES . . . . . . . good luck :)





Monday, 20 May 2019

Poetry Monday: Favourite Food . . . And Funnies

It's Poetry Monday, and the topic this week is . . . FAVOURITE FOOD.

Join Delores, Mother Owl, and me as we whip up our mouth-watering and delicious poems on this topic! You can leave a poem in the comments or post on your own blog -- if you do the latter, please leave a comment to let us know where to find you.

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I had a surprising amount of trouble with this topic (who suggested it, anyway? oh right that would be me), until the moment I found a different perspective.

I was thinking about how people will sometimes speculate for fun what they would choose if they had to eat the same thing for the rest of their lives. I was thinking that wouldn't be the same as a favourite food for me because I doubt I could eat just one thing forever, no matter how much I liked it to start with.

Then it occurred to me that that's exactly what many dogs and cats do, especially the pampered ones being fed a veterinarian-approved diet . . .

Written from the point of view of my cats this week :)


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Let's Have A Bit Less Of That Crunchy Kibble, Eh?

What's in your bowl, Tall One?
What's on your plate, Furless One?
Whatcha cooking, Stiff-Spined One?
Whadja bring me from the store, Water-Bathing One?
What's in your mouth, Selfish One?
Whattya putting in the Cold Box, Clawless One?

Whatever it is,
I WANT IT.
IT'S MY FAVOURITE THING .....






But you just said you wanted it . . . Sigh. This, too, is normal for a cat.

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For the sake of all that's verbal, verbose, and full of verbiage, please Delores please give us a better topic for next week!

I'll update here the moment she does :)

(Note: I've put the update on next week's topic at the bottom of the post, where it is usually found.)


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In the meantime, some more funnies, just because:




































Wishing you a week with your favourite foods in it :)

Update:  Next week's topic is . . . THE TOOL SHED . . . thank you, Delores!