Puppies and Dragons #raising a dragon in the 21st century — Dragon Tails and Scales

“Mommy, mommy I saw the cutest puppy when I was visiting Cheria today.” “I love puppies. Did Cheria get a new puppy?” “No. They got an adult dog at the rescue place. The people there were excited when I signed up to take a puppy home. Did I mention he really needs a home?” “Emily, […]

Puppies and Dragons #raising a dragon in the 21st century — Dragon Tails and Scales

Dementia #atozchallenge #elderlyissues #dragons

“Honey, I lost another one…”

“Okay, let me get my glasses on so I can find my shoes.”

“Why do you need shoes?”

“So I can help you find what you lost.”

“Are you okay? We don’t need shoes to find the word I lost just now.”

 

As I get older I cant tell you how many names and words seem to slip out of my brain when I need them. It’s easy to wonder: Do I have dementia? Am I at risk????

***

There are still soooo many things we don’t know about this condition. If anything it has broadened as a field of study.

It’s easy to get frustrated when mom, dad, auntie, uncle can’t remember me or cant remember how to put his or her clothes on.  I want to fill in the blanks when they drop a word or when speech slows.

Diet ( a happy brain has healthy oils, low sugar, fiber) and activity play an important role as we age; this also being the case with dementia. Family members struggle because there is a new normal that isn’t their normal. It can be easier for an “outside” caregiver because we are not as familiar with the way that person was.

Beyond diet and activity it’s also important to engage. Not easy I promise but it is rewarding when you can “get in” to the world of an elderly person.

***

Dementia Case #1

What are we doing?

Well a man named Isaac Newton did it why cant we? I said as I started dropping a heavy item from one hand and a light item from my other hand.

“Look you better let me do it; you could get hurt.” He couldnt hide the chuckle.

“Okay Mr. D but first you have to predict if the feather or the rock will hit the floor first. ”

“What are these again?”

“They are finger puppets.”

Mr. C walked across the room making his finger puppet fly and made a bird call.

“This is strictly for scientific purposes you know.” He said as he looked over his shoulder.

“What do you wanna bet that my paper fighter plane can fly further than yours.”

“We will have to see after all this is science in the making. ” Mr C. said as he flung his paper airplane across the backyard.

We did a great job with my science curriculum the publisher will be pleased. No telling your family what we were doing.

***

Last summer as I was preparing lessons and activities for a Science curriculum ( we published for schools in E. Africa), I used Mr. D to help practice the science activities. We made bird puppets, demonstrated gravity with different objects, made and flew planes.

 

***

 

 

Welcome to Moondustwriter’s Blog.  I am participating in the 2020 A to Z Challenge.

If you are participating how are you enjoying the challenge after the first “week’?

 

You may have an aging family member in your home.

How do you deal with your family member when they seem to be forgetting or losing a big part of who they used to be?

What are some of your challenges?

 

If you like dragons

Or

You have a child at home who likes dragons

OR

you are spending your day reading stuff and what the heck dragons are okay

“D” obviously for dragons –  https://wp.me/pDORj-6fi

It’s part of a series of children’s stories that we were finalizing when we were invited to publish science curriculum for E. Africa.

An Invisible Dragon #atozchallenge #children #dragons

I’m breaking with my theme “Children” and poetry slightly for today. My pet dragon and his best friend Emily insisted. This is an excerpt from the book we are working on “Raising a dragon in the 21st Century.”

 

 

Today my class went on a cool field trip to the Air and Space Museum. There are really old planes and even a space shuttle. I imagined being in the cockpit of the Discovery as it shot into space on the back of a rocket.  I was adjusting my space suit when…

“Look up there,” one of the students pointed.  “That red airplane is moving. Do you think it will fall?”

“Those airplanes are well secured so they wont fall.” Our tour guide assured us.

“It’s like the movie Night at the museum,” another student said as we watched several of the airplanes rocking back and forth on their thin cables.

The tour guide stepped away from our class and got on her walkie.  I saw her lips mouth “Is it safe for these children…”

Then I noticed the shadow of a dragon wing brushing against a plane.

“Drag,” I hissed, “get over there.” I pointed to the bathrooms as I stomped over to the corner out of sight. “What are you doing here?”

“Emily, when I heard you were going to a place where there were flying things I wanted to see them too.  Not one of them will talk to me.”

“Hmmm. You thought you would find another dragon at the museum?”

Drag’s eyes got big as he nodded.

“Ohhh Drag, I’m sorry. All these things are machines. As far as I know, you are the only living dragon.”

“That’s too bad.” Drag made a face at the winged machines.

“Please stay right next to me until we get outside. Then I want you to fly straight home. No more touching airplanes. And you need to stay invisible.”

“Ok Em,” my dragon wiggled his eyes.

I giggled and crossed my eyes.

You can’t be too careful where you go when you are raising a dragon in the 21st century…

“Hi – If you are visiting from the A to Z challenge can you please not tell my papa you saw me. He get’s worried about my pet dragon and incidents and stuff I don’t understand yet.”

~ Thanks Em

 

Share a Story #children #lifeinUganda #acholi

 

Between  big pages

turn little minds

fairies of every kind

watch the spark

imagination ignites

Dragons bright and dark

animals climb trees upside down

little boys’ arms are wings

no smile becomes a frown

knights get big and golden

kings big and small

words create a kingdom

giants from clouds fall

The dragon got away before I could get his picture but he left a clue behind in his big foot prints.

Never stop dreaming or imagining. By all means never stop sharing these things with a child!!!

 

Miss all of you. I have a morning of so I am writing after weeks. We are enjoying amazing times to teach and tell stories to Acholi children. These village children are so bright and are catching up quickly!!

Waving from Northern Uganda

 

 

 

 

As Writers, Why Do We Blog? #nationalpoetryday #5years #blogging #poetry

 

Join me for a moment as I reflect on my 1600th post (on this blog alone) and the 5 year mile marker. I’ve come almost full circle on a colorful and interesting ride.

 

What I’ve learned about blogging as a poet:

When I first started blogging, I joined an on-line poetry community. It was supposedly very active for a poetry group. We would put our poetry directly on the site – this was before Linky came into being. I rarely got a comment. I finally met one other person who liked to discuss poetry – one person to give me scraps of insight. The one thing I gained was the “nerve” to post what I had written on a public wall. I’m pretty private about the stuff that comes from my heart and soul.

The next poetry community I found was growing quickly( obviously there was a vacuum when it came to creative sites.) It was a good place to meet people, the hostess was nice, and the number of comments you got each week grew exponentially. My skills as a script writer (or commentor) were unnecessary as the comments ranged from “nice poem” to “I like your poem.”

Poetry is an unusual form of creative writing as it evokes different feelings from people.

Consider this phrase:

he knocked on her door once

she was unable to answer

the next time he came

her bags were packed…

Depending on where you are standing, “He” and “it” can mean vastly different things. For one person, this can be romantic for another dark, and yet another person may think of the inevitability of change. I was thinking about death. If you tell me”you liked the poem”, I gather the poem said little or nothing to you.

Poets like to (at least occasionally) see what window they have opened for the viewer. “I like your poem” is a closed window.

The next poetry community was one I decided to form (after attending a writer’s conference.) I birthed the idea for two reasons: I was tired of 20 “I like your poem” comments and I wanted a pilot (practice) for writers in the special needs community. The pilot was called One Stop Poetry. The goal:  to inspire emerging poets to write and get feedback and give existing poets a place to get and give feedback. We (the 3 “ms” and a “D”) never expected to grow like a weed and did not have the plan in place to handle the massive numbers that we were gaining. In a matter of months, we went from one day of poets sharing their work to a week-long format with articles about form, articles about poets, photography, art, chat rooms on twitter… In 6 months, we had thousands of followers (which meant 100s of comments in any given day.) In 8 months, we had won an international award in the arts.  I had interviews and a meeting scheduled (with a financial backer) to discuss creating an on-line poetry (arts) program for children.

In 12 months – Too much too soon never ends well. I’m still not sure why the train was derailed (and a poetry community shut down). I did hear rumors that I was very sick. To anyone who was part of One Stop Poetry (who is reading this) I am grateful for the ride and the relationships with fine and talented individuals.  The next year was a hard year. I got the advice “stop blogging.” I almost did – I was stalked, hacked, someone had borrowed my identity…  I asked the proverbial question, ” What have I done wrong?” Looking back – nothing! What is the saying: “Imitation is the highest form of flattery…” There are other blog sites today that branched off with poets that had met at One Stop. How wonderful that people met through something I was part of.

Sadly, blogging does have its problems like piracy, identity theft, and other mean things that inhabit the real world, but it also has some truly fine people.

The next poetry community I entered into was a wonderful haiku community that was unobtrusive and challenging to my writing skills. I laugh because haiku, since I was 10, has been a daunting task. I’d offer to do the artwork if the teacher would let me off the hook, as I felt incapable of writing a poem in 17 syllables that said “something.” If you haven’t written haiku – and you want to be a serious writer- take some time in that pursuit. I read the most beautiful, full stories in 17 syllables. I’ve met gifted and kind people who deserve hugs and a huge  thanks.

Then I actually found myself bending back on myself. I’m a writer and I always have been. My blog started because I was sad about the closing of a independent(international) radio station that several of us had high hopes for. I wrote the sketches for the children’s hour. When we closed, I had a huge void.

And here I am looking at myself 5 years hence: The book I wrote (almost 5 years ago for special needs children) should be published soonish, I have returned to my study and pursuit of art after a long haitus, My stories with my favorite co-author are being published in other countries for education (I just sent off book 1 of 3), and I found a wonderful artist to illustrate two dragon series in the final development stages.

What did I gain?  A better look at myself, a deeper love for poetry and haiku, really amazing friends and co-writers, and so very much more…

After five years of blogging, I still get the occasional comment “nice poem.” Now I chuckle and remember back to the beginning.

In the next five years, I hope to still write poetry here. I also hope to get my little dragon book into the hands of boys and girls. We are excited to see what comes from this dragon with a big heart. If you want to see a piece of what we are doing visit Dragon Tales and Scales

smiling-pet

The artwork © moondust designs ’14

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