Monthly Archives: April 2014

Mistakes are the portals of discovery – James Joyce



i was so excited.

i’d saved up my change,

69 cents,

to buy my first record.

i got a ride to the store,

found ‘lady madonna’,

ran to the counter, counted out my change,

and skipped out of the store.


the moment i got home,

i put the record on, 

ready to hear my favorites sing,

i was a young beatles fan.

and i quickly discovered,

that in my rush and excitement,

i had actually purchased

 the fats domino version 

of the same song.

not the same,

but fun and different.

and new to me.

do you ever get that excited that you lose sight of the mission?

do you ever discover something wonderful and new quite by accident?

The four building blocks of the universe are fire, water, gravel and vinyl.
Dave Barry

image credits: captiol records, reprise records

Half my life is an act of revision 
- John Irving



very recently, i received the note below, and was happy to have been one of a huge group of writers on this first-ever collaborative novel writing project. each writer was assigned a date to write her or his chapter, feeding off of the one before it, having never seen it before, and given 24 hours to complete it. i loved the challenge of this project, as well as the international group effort that went into creating it.

Writers, hello.

In November 2013, around 300 writers from 27 countries (and 44 U.S. states) worked together to write a group novel for National Novel Writing Month (NaNoWriMo). We called the project #GrammoWriMo; and, clocking in at a total of 130,927 unedited words, we are proud to say that your draft was among the 41,940 completed!

Today, it is with great excitement that the Grammarly team announces the publication of this GrammoWriMo e-book on Amazon. (see above) Thank you for your patience with us through the editing process.

Finally, you’ll note that the e-book is listed for $0.99 on Amazon. Given the theme of the novel, we plan to donate all proceeds from the sale of the book to the Make-a-Wish Foundation.

“What you don’t wish for will always be beyond your reach.” ― Micheal Ende

Thank you for all of your contributions to our 2013 GrammoWriMo e-book. We’ll look forward to working with you in 2014!

All the best,
The GrammoWriMo Team


Get it down. Take chances. It may be bad, but it’s the only way you can do anything really good.
- William Faulkner


six degrees of sexton-ation


we discovered last fall, in blog world, that we were connected, through many different avenues,

and mutual close friends. amazingly, we had never crossed paths in real life. until…..


i attended a wonderful and unusual book signing at our local ann arbor senior center,

with guest author, susie sexton.


susie read and offered anecdotes from her book,

and local Roy Sexton, Susie Duncan Sexton’s son,

(known throughout Michigan for his cabaret style performances),

sang some of his mom’s favorite musical show tunes.

they kept the audience laughing and clapping.

and roy was there to support his mother’s wonderful endeavor.


Susie Duncan Sexton – is a writer, political pundit, arts critic, animal rights advocate, (and mother of Roy) – has her own column on Jennifer Zartman Romano’s “Talk of the Town.” The column offers observations of growing up in a small Indiana town – the culture, the anecdotes, the legends, the gossip, the joys, the heartaches – and what Sexton has learned about life ever since. She also writes a column “Homeward Angle” for the Columbia City Post and Mail, and she recently published two books, “Secrets of an Old Typewriter,” and “More Secrets of an Old Typewriter.”


and just yesterday, i attended son roy’s own book signing,

at a new ann arbor local independent community bookstore, bookbound.

and susie was there to return the favor.


as roy shares a piece from his book, about growing up with films all around him,

susie is happily surprised by a shared love of favorite movies,

with yet another closely connected audience member, john.


roy (snarky and smart blogging movie reviewer), sang,

(accompanied by his longtime friend and fellow theater musician, rebecca biber),

and read and answered questions.

and susie was there to support him.


book bound owners, megan and peter blackshear

(former borders bargain book-buyer extraordanaire)

graciously hosted the event

in support of local authors.

they may have to create a ‘sexton section’ in the store.


only open seven months,

this store has brought a much needed bookstore to the north side of ann arbor.


and roy’s first book,
Reel Roy Reviews Volume 1: Keepin’ it Real.
has been making it’s way around the world.


there were so many sextons, so little time……

and i was so happy to be a part of it all,

and in awe of the heartfelt and mutual support shared by all.



Susie’s blog:

Roy’s Blog:

Susie’s author website:

Roy’s theatre group:






Small business isn’t for the faint of heart. It’s for the brave, the patient and the persistent. It’s for the overcomer. – Unknown



Washtenaw Dairy has been many things to many people in the community, and a home away from home for the neighborhood for almost 80 years.  what began as a dairy, has continued on as a family-friendly gathering spot for locals and visitors from all over, with ice cream and home made donuts and coffee and smiling faces, always happy to welcome in anyone who stops by.


when they proposed raising the price of a cup of coffee by 10 cents, topping out at over a dollar,

to at least break even, some of the morning regulars were upset,

so they decided to keep selling it at the old price,

and see it as a service to their loyal community. 


with the second generation of owners, one in their 60s, and his partner in his 80s, their quote sums up their approach “We won’t put on airs, we’re pretty much just workers,.” The workday starts early to make sure everything gets done. The first employees get to the store at two in the morning, the managers follow at four, and doors open at 5 a.m. “every day but Christmas.”


While ice cream is a big part of the business, the store also sells 150 dozen donuts a day.

“we don’t even know how to turn on a computer, we missed the whole tech thing and for us it’s really hard to get into.” despite the owner’s lack of technical know-how, they’ve been a major presence in the community for a long time. they donate ice cream or money to several hundred causes a year ranging from a the zen buddhist temple to the local high school hockey team. “we support the community, because the community supports us. that’s why it’s worked all these years. it adds up on your bottom line, but these same people come down with their families and buy ice cream. they’ve come for years and supported us.”


The important thing is not being afraid to take a chance.

Remember, the greatest failure is to not try.

Once you find something you love to do, be the best at doing it.

– Debbie Fields




animal, mineral, or vegetable?


part of my life as a full-day kindergarten teacher is having lunch with the kids 3 days a week. it’s especially fun because the pre-kindergartneners also share our table, and while we might not get much time to eat, it never fails to be exciting and i am endlessly fascinated by their take on the food.



here are some chickeny stripnuggetstick things


here are some fishy stripnuggetstick things 


they are never quite sure what to ask for, or what we’re having, when wanting more.

every year, someone declares themselves to suddenly be a ‘bege-tarian’,

because they like animals.

and they stop eating any meat,

but somehow they don’t identify our nuggetstickstrip items as meat,

and i understand completely.


and i loved the day when one of them asked for syrup to go on their foodstripnuggety item.

why do you want syrup, i asked?

aren’t these french toast strips?, they answered.

i’m not really sure, but let’s go with that.

Part of the secret of success in life is to eat what you like and let the food fight it out inside.

 Mark Twain