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Stimulating Discussions Solve Problems
Stimulating Discussions Solve Problems

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I was bursting with responses to Nissetje's post as I poured words into his comment box. Then I recalled a WordPress principle guiding us bloggers to resist leaving long comments, and to reblog the inspiring post instead with our response. So here's what I would like to say to him:
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I've been working on my loom
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I used to wonder what was meant by a "balanced loom". Some threads and weaving patterns require more loom balancing than others, as you can see in this video and comment.
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Originally posted on CatTail Creative: When Chuck and I caught the ceramics bug and set up our studio last summer, we started out with reckless abandon.  We spent the evenings and weekends making anything and everything that we wanted to try and, in a…
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Our first frost of the year
And our first snowfall of the year
On the same day

No more tomatoes this year
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I discovered these meditations at the Google Android app store. This youtube recording is a quick sample of the content. I need to be more grounded, and this meditation gives me a great way to connect.
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Del's River
an excerpt from near the beginning of my #RiverNovel

Stacey barely looks up from her book. "Hey, girl! How was The River?"

"Good." Del puts her things in her room, comes back out to the kitchen, puts a pot of water on the stove to boil.

I look from Stacey to her, watching for more of an answer. "Good?"

"Yeah." I leave it at that until Del pulls down a box of macaroni noodles, pours in enough for a party, and puts the box back.

I'm wanting more of an answer. "So, you had a good time?"

"Yeah." Del gets the cheese from the fridge, takes the grater out of the drawer, and starts rubbing the cheese against the metal like she's going to grind up the whole block.

I can't stand her silence. "Are you OK?"

"Yeah." The lid on the pot taps as the water comes back to a boil.

I can't stand the suspense. "Did you break up?"

"No!" She looks up at me, and blinks as if the lights just came on. "Why did you think that?"

I'm relieved. I'd hate to think that he'd dumped her, or that she discovered something awful about him. "You came in looking unhappy. Did you guys get in a fight?"

"No! I'm telling you: everything's OK!"

"Then why do you look so miserable?"

"Because I don't understand him!" Now the pot lid is making a racket as the water threatens to boil over.

As she stirs the pot, I ask, "What do you mean?"

"How can I keep him?"

"What?"

"Why does he like me? What does he want from me? I'm so used to having him, I don't ever want to be without him. I can't stand the idea of losing him. How can I keep him interested in me?" She turns away from the stove and looks straight at me, and says again, "How can I keep him interested in me?"

Del must be the most beautiful woman on the planet. Her peachy skin shows no scars from childhood diseases or injuries. Her hair has a silky sheen, and sweeps back perfectly into decorative combs. When she lets me brush it, any snarls fall apart like magic, and the strands in the brush glitter like sunbeams. When I think of Italians, I think of dark curly hair, but she says that her ancestors lived near Switzerland. She is just a few inches shorter than Larry, so they look beautiful together. His dark coloring makes him look even more stunning beside her. I wonder out loud, "Why would you lose him?"

"He takes me everywhere, does everything for me. He takes me to the greatest restaurants and concerts and shows. He keeps taking me shopping for special clothes to wear to these places, and paying for everything."

I shake my head. "Honey, you got a Sugar Daddy, and he's got the best Barbie doll."

"When is he gonna get tired of me?" Foam rolls over the top of the pot. I turn down the fire so it's just bubbling slowly. Del's eyes are red, her cheeks are flushed. What can I say to comfort her? I can tell her that everything's OK, and he'll never leave her, but I don't know that, and she has to find out for herself. I can tell her that she's being a silly baby, but she's not likely to take well to that strategy. Instead, I give her a hug, and say, "If he ever leaves you, I'll hand you the sharpest knife that I can find so you can kill him nice and slowly, slicing through one layer of his slithery snake skin at a time, revealing his serpent-like slimy sap that splatters all over the place." We break out in heaving laughs, mixed with her sobs.

The alarm rings, indicating that the noodles are done. I mix together the cheese, milk, and noodles while she blows her nose. We take our servings, and I ask her, "What happened this weekend?"

"Nothing and everything. It was perfect."

__________________________

Everyone who "Likes" and makes suggestions motivates me to continue exploring this story. Some of the most effective comments ask for more detail about a moment, event or character.
___________________________________

This is a #SaturdayScenes from near the end of my #RiverNovel .

#SaturdayScenes is a Google+ community giving authors constructive feedback every week on work in development. You can ask to join us. Click on the link below and then click the red Ask to Join button.
https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/113661273168031586623

See links to all of the excerpts that I've posted by going to http://weavergrace.com/2014/09/17/river-novel/

Photo credits:
Ukraine dnepr at krementchug, by Lutz Fischer-Lamprecht http://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Ukraine_dnepr_at_krementchug.JPG Licensed by Creative Commons Attribution Share Alike 3.0 Unported. 
Kissing Crane Leg Knife, by James Case https://www.flickr.com/photos/capcase/7348516434/in/photostream/ Licensed by Creative Commons Attribution 2.0.
Modified by Grace Buchanan.
#RiverCuts for #RiverNovel by Grace Buchanan.
#ns
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Take care of your Mental Health! Burn a Bristly Relationship http://weavergrace.com/2015/05/01/burning-brushy-relationship/

#MentalHealthMonth  
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My First Monster Story since I was a kid

Bleary-eyed, I'm putting on my shoes and socks while Nikita whines and pants in the doorway. She leads the way to the coat rack as I get used to being vertical. She sits still while I clip her leash on to her collar. She tugs on the leash ever so slightly, restraining her urge to take off across the field in pursuit of whatever she smells that has traveled the farthest. We head out for our route around the block.

My vertebrae are stacked up properly, with my skull settled on top, but I'm walking with a hobble. My hips and knees flex properly. My ankles are behaving. My feet aren't coordinating quite correctly. My left foot is aching a bit.

Nikita keeps me going as my left foot begins to feel compressed in my shoe. Why would it be swelling? I don't recall banging it on anything.

As we approach the halfway point, I am limping. If anyone else is out this early, they will surely stop me and ask if I'm alright. I'm the only one here now to ask that question. I must be alright; I can't recall any reason why my foot would hurt. It's not like I've been kicking soccer balls around or stumbling along mountain paths lately.

Just past the halfway point, I am taking a large step with my right foot, and dragging my left foot behind, to keep from aggravating my left foot as much as possible. Stepping on it doesn't hurt so much as lifting it for the next step. As I realize this, I used more of a clopping gait, launching myself forward with my left foot, then dragging it along to my right foot.

As we approach the final home stretch, I tie Nikita to the Gillymans' gate, and press down on the top of my left foot. Yowza! I hit a nerve that wanted to be left alone! I can't stop myself from releasing the foot from my shoe. As I untie the laces, the swelling becomes conspicuous. As I remove my sock, my stomach churns at the sight of my malady: a pointy yellow projection pushing the skin up away from the bone. Horrid to look at, but relief after its confinement.

I stuff the sock in my pocket, and tie the shoe by its laces to my belt loop. Nikita has "done her business" while waiting for me, so I collect it, and we continue on toward the garbage can at the corner.

The wind blowing toward us is the only thing hampering my progress now. I don't usually like walking barefoot, but the pain relief overcomes any squeamishness that I have about my tender soles.

Just past the garbage can, after we turn the corner, the wind shifts. It whips Nikita's attention toward my concern. She stops, leans back, hunches over, and growls at my foot. She digs her feet into the lawn, and gives my foot her undivided attention. "Come on Nikita," I coax her, but she seems oblivious to the rest of me. All she is aware of is my foot, and she's not liking something about it. I've seen dogs on TV do this kind of thing when they saw bears and such (the fur really is sticking up on the back of her neck), and I suppose that I'm glad that she's not brave enough to attack the foe that my foot seems to have become.

I try to look at the foot from her vantage point, and notice that the top isn't just peaked; it has taken on a more irregular shape. As my stomach threatens to backfire, I look ahead at how much farther we have to go.

"Come on Nikita. Let's get home for breakfast. Hungry? Want a treat? Kibble? Walkies." None of the key words evoke the usual response. It's her and my foot, and that's all that's existing in her world. If she wasn't so deaf at this moment, I'd pat her on the head to redirect her attention, but I'm afraid of getting between her and her target. I wiggle my toes to help her recognize my foot for what it is, but that raises a more persistent and deeper growl. The top of my foot jiggles a bit.

What if I take my end of the leash and swing it into her field of vision? I don't want to let go of her. If I do, she might bolt after some passing distraction that the wind carries.

The sock in my pocket.

"Hey Nikita. Look. A sock. You like socks. Come on, play tug-of-war with me. For God's sake, take it. I won't get mad at you this time, I promise." I'm shaking like the sock, I'm so desperate to break her stare from my foot. I take a breath in, relax my shoulders the best that I can, take another breath in as deeply as I can, and aim the sock to land on her muzzle. Yes! She tosses it in the air, catches it, swings it around, and rips a long gash in it.

"Come on Nikita, let's get on home. Walk!" She resumes her place at my side, upwind of me, and carries her head like she's holding a hard-earned prize. My foot flinches as I think of how it would feel if it was still in that sock.

Chapter 2: A Beast Erupts
Chapter 3: Nikita? Yum!
To be continued...maybe
__________________________

Everyone who "Likes" and makes suggestions motivates me to continue exploring this story. Some of the most effective comments ask for more detail about a moment, event or character.
__________________________
This is a #SaturdayScenes completely unrelated to my #RiverNovel

See links to all of the excerpts that I've posted from my River Novel by going to http://weavergrace.com/2014/09/17/river-novel/

#SaturdayScenes is a Google+ community giving authors constructive feedback every week on work in development. You can ask to join us. Click on the link below and then click the red Ask to Join button.
https://plus.google.com/u/0/communities/113661273168031586623

#ns
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