“dear miss kennedy, i know this spell. if you do that magic it just keeps you safe from stuff if you are in danger.”
– from my student, l.
one of kindest and most wonderful gifts i’ve ever received
“kindness is a magical spell –
performed by enlightened beings –
meant to enchant hearts and lift weary souls that they might fly.”
-richelle e. goodrich
when someone in our class
got injured while playing outside
the kinder quickly sprang into action
creating art and cards for their friend
23 pieces of art from 14 children
given to her to know she was cared about
a quiet smile was her gift back to them.
“making art is like giving a gift: evidence of your spirit and that you are here.”
– paddy mitchell
Harper Lee — the famously private author, might never have written the classic “To Kill A Mockingbird” if it hadn’t been for a 1950s Christmas gift.
Back in 1956, Lee was a ticket agent for British Overseas Airways Corporation. Like most struggling writers, she was having trouble balancing her job and finding time to write. She told this to her New York City friends, Michael and Joy Brown (who were also friends of Truman Capote).
Michael was a successful “industrial musical writer” whom American corporations hired to create performances to inspire their workers. His clients ranged from DuPont to JC Penney, and he was raking in the money for songs like “The Wonderful World of Chemistry.”
So in 1956, the Browns’ gave Lee the best Christmas present of all: An entire year’s salary so she could take time to write whatever she wanted. “There was an envelope on the tree, addressed to me. I opened it and read: ‘You have one year off from your job to write whatever you please. Merry Christmas,'” she wrote in McCall’s Magazine in 1961. “ They assured me that it was not some sort of joke. They’d had a good year, they said. They’d saved some money and thought it was high time they did something about me.”
Lee took that time to write “To Kill A Mockingbird,” which sold over 40 million copies worldwide, has been translated into over 40 languages, served as the basis for a hugely popular film, and for which she won a Pulitzer Prize.
“when life gives you a gift, receive it with all your heart.”
credits: Megan Willett-Wei, Insider
this tiny dog
has lived a full life
gifted to me by my dear friend
her husband’s mother/grandmother
i would love to know its story
it has seen the world and is beautifully imperfect.
“art is something that makes you breathe with a different kind of happiness.”
~ Anni Albers
try as he might
my colleague was not able to convince anyone
to steal from him
or trade with him
for this monstrosity of a white elephant gift
that he randomly chose
at our faculty holiday party
it was as huge as a shield, very heavy, and not the most beautiful
(even said on the back that it was microwaveable,
but would not come anywhere near fitting
into any microwave i’ve ever seen,
and was edged in metal)
but we did laugh about it the entire time
‘the manner of giving is worth more than the gift.’