Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'm Making Other Writers Rich

Although I have not had anything published, I am a writer. As a teenager, I kept journals and wrote poetry. In college, I enjoyed the research papers and writing assignments in all of my courses. After college, I took a course in writing children's stories, and helped my sister with her college research projects. For over twenty years as a speech pathologist, I have written lessons, goals, progress summaries, quarterly reports, evaluation reports, stories to use in therapy and endless lists. I have written letters to parents, letters to teachers and letters of justification to agencies. As a mom, I have co-authored and edited many reports from the life of raccoons to the life of Mohammad Ali. As a hobbyist I have written several children's stories, started a cookbook, and proposed a non-fiction book to several publishers. Currently I am enjoying this blog as an outlet for my need to write. As you see from the pictures, I have helped other writers by buying their books. I know everything I need to do to write books and get them published. I have all the knowledge I need for marketing a published book. I have all the sources for using the best words, using the most proper form, and ways to profit from writing. The only thing missing is the time to write. I squeeze it in whenever possible, but my paying job, family, and activities of daily living seem to always take priority. I have a long term goal and a short term plan for my writing. I will get my current stories sent out to possible publishers. I will also pursue my current projects with a new enthusiasm and priority. I will be published.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Wildlife Project






We allowed a Graduate Research Assistant to place a camera on our property this past winter. He wanted to study what wildlife may be in this area. They did it last year and plan to do it again next year too. He was able to get pictures of several things. These are pictures of some of the animals that he found. He did not get pictures of the many others that we have seen or taken pictures of ourselves. We have also seen: deer, beaver, groundhog, muskrat, geese, blue heron, mallard ducks, fox, squirrel, hawk, owl and many different varieties of birds. This beats the city any day!

Friday, May 29, 2009

Bottle Tree

Our Bottle Tree

I had heard a little about bottle trees and saw one in a local yard. Since Eddie is a metal artist, I asked him to make me a metal bottle tree. The teachers at the school I work at were kind enough to drink some wine in beautiful colored bottles for my tree. I love it in our yard.

Bottle Tree History
(Taken from internet I did not write this but I don't know who did)
Glass "Bottle Trees" originated in ninth century Kongo during a period when superstitious Central African people believed that a genie or imp could be captured in a bottle. The legend said that empty glass bottles placed outside and near the home could capture roving evil spirits at night. The spirit would be destroyed the next day when the sunshine hit the bottle. They could then be corked and thrown into the river to wash away the evil spirits. So, this is how bottles and trees originally came together.
This practice was taken to Europe and North America by African slaves. Thomas Atwood, in History of the Island of Domi (1791), made particular note of the bottle tree as a protection of the home through an invocation of the dead. Atwood writes of the confidence of the African people "in the power of the dead, of the sun and the moon--nay even of sticks, stones and earth from graves hung bottles in their gardens."

While Europeans adapted the bottle tree idea into hollow glass spheres known as "witch balls," the practice of hanging bottles in trees became widespread in the plantation regions of Southern states and from there migrated north and inland into Appalachia.

Traditionally, the bottles are placed on the branches of a crepe myrtle tree. The image of the myrtle tree recurs in the Old Testament, aligned with the Hebrews' escape from slavery, their diaspora and the promise of the redemption of their homeland.

Bottle tree colors can range from blue to clear, to brown, but cobalt blue are always preferred. In the Hoodoo folk-magic tradition, the elemental blues of water and sky place the bottle tree at a crossroads between heaven and earth, and therefore between the living and the dead. The bottle tree interacts with the unknown powers of both creative and destructive spirits.

The bottles are placed upside down with the neck facing the trunk. Trees need not be thickly populated with bottles. Malevolent spirits, on the prowl during the night, enter the bottles where they become trapped by an "encircling charm." It is said that when the wind blows past the tree, you can hear the moans of the ensnared spirits whistling on the breeze. Come morning, they are burnt up by the rising sun.

Today, the bottle tree has entered the realm of folk art. Companies now market bottle tree armatures meant to serve as colorful garden ornaments, once covered with colorful bottles.