April is National Poetry Month {Spin Cycle Prompt}

Poetry: I love to read it, but dislike writing it! A few years back, when the lovely Jen from Sprite’s Keeper was the Master Spinner, she chose poetry for the Spin Cycle. Here’s the poem I wrote: Years ago, in a small classroom I taught Seven-year-olds, smart and adorable ....more

Every Day Is Earth Day

My grandparents were masters at reusing everything. My grandma used an empty coffee can as a cookie jar. She never bought ziplock bags because bread bags were perfectly good for storing food ....more

Could the Use Of GMOs Help Our Environment?

We are very fortunate to live close to our elementary school and I pick up my daughters after school every day. We walk in any kind of weather; rain, snow or shine. As we walk, we pass a long line of cars waiting for children to come out the doors when the bell rings and–this annoys me–their engines are running the entire time ....more

We Go Together Like Peas and Carrots

One time when my sister was visiting me, we had bought a papaya to try. As we were unpacking the groceries, I held the papaya in my hand and started making up a song. “Pa-pa-pa-pi-yah!” I sang ....more

Earth Day Is This Week {Spin Cycle Prompt}

Earth Day is on Wednesday, April 22. I love teaching about Earth Day and the three R’s: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle! Last year, my students made flowers from cereal boxes ....more

Just Write! {Spin Cycle}

The writing advice I give most often is to just start writing and the words will come. I use this strategy most often during the month of November, when I blog every day for 30 days. I keep going strong for the first couple of days in December…and then I get back into my old routine of blogging only when I feel like it ....more

Ten Random Things About Me

1. My family moved from Nebraska to Illinois when I was three. During the move, I got stung by a bumblebee on my big toe! 2 ....more

Angelhood, by A.J. Cattapan {Book Nook}

My neighbor introduced me to A.J. a few years ago, and we discovered that we had a lot in common. We’re both teachers and we’re both writers. Along with another friend (Mayor Crazyville) we started a blog “support group” and met for coffee and blog talk ....more

Have You Been Writing? (I haven’t.)

My favorite pair of slippers literally just crumbled apart tonight. I couldn’t figure out why they felt so strange and lumpy on my feet until I discovered I was leaving bits and pieces of the rubber soles all over the house today. What else could I do but throw them out? ...more

A House Is More Than a Building, It’s Your Home

The kids are all tucked into bed, and as I sit down with my laptop tonight, I’ve also been looking at the weather radar. Several tornadoes have touched down in Northern Illinois this evening, which terrifies me. A small town in DeKalb County supposedly no long exists ....more