Tag Archives: World War II

Remembrance Day is tomorrow; updates for NaNoWriMo & PiBoIdMo

Today was a busy day for me. I had much to do at Dad’s before I came home for the week, but I also spent lots of time just with him. I didn’t get anything at all written on my NaNo novel, but I got a fun idea for PiBoIdMo before I was even fully awake this morning. That gives me idea #16 for Day 10.

Tomorrow is Remembrance Day here in Canada, Veterans Day in the USA.  Since Dad is a WWII veteran we will be attending the special service in the morning. It’s not foremost in Dad’s thinking this year, but we are seeing to it that he gets there since he would not like to miss it. Next year may be a totally different scenario. Following the service ten of our family will be going to the veterans’ dinner with Dad.

Remembrance

 

 

 

 

 

 

REMEMBER AND HONOUR OUR VETERANS ON NOVEMBER 11. THEIR SACRIFICE IS ONE WE CAN NEVER FULLY UNDERSTAND UNLESS WE’VE BEEN THERE. GET OUT TO A SERVICE AND REALLY OBSERVE AND LISTEN.

Have you ever talked with a veteran about the war, and their experiences they’re willing to discuss?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

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My word is GRATEFUL: Remembrance and Thanksgiving

Lately, I have been finding it hard to write. If you have been following my progress during NaNoWriMo you will have noticed there is not much moving forward the past few days. I am so far behind now there is little hope for me to end the challenge with a high word count. I’m even wondering if I will finish this novel no matter how many words it takes to get there.

For some people, when things are going wrong in their lives, or they are just having a down time, they write. It helps them through it. But for me … I can’t seem to think that way. The creativity gets put on hold by whatever is troubling me. I seem to fall victim to my emotions, and that’s not a good thing.

Remembrance Day is a special day for this family. Our dad is a WWII veteran and we are very proud of him, especially as he was one of the young Canadian soldiers who bravely liberated the Netherlands. For years, with Dad we have attended the ceremonies and the Veterans’ dinner following the special service. This year things got a bit confused and it was difficult for awhile – my week “on duty” so it was more upsetting for me. It got straightened out but left me with a troubled heart. That affected everything since I just can’t seem to separate myself from it all even when I get away for my week at home. I think if I were good at writing through things, I would have had a lot more done on my novel by now!

Last Thursday was my birthday. I won’t say which birthday, I’ll just leave that for you to guess if you want to.  I’d been talking to God, telling Him (as if He didn’t already know, but I had to admit it) that I need help. I need help to get through this. The day before my birthday two friends called me, two friends totally apart from one another and whom I hadn’t talked with in awhile. Neither knew my of increased stress, both conversations were ministering to my need.

The next morning, November 16, a really interesting thing happened when I woke before my feet even hit the floor.

First, by way of explanation — There is someone who has a website or blog who chooses a word for herself at the beginning of each year, and challenges others to do the same. That word – individual to each person – is to be their word by which to live all that year. (I’m sorry I don’t recall who that person is, but if you know please remind me in a comment.) I had tried to come up with a word for myself, but nothing came to me. What is fascinating to me is that as I was waking on the morning of my birthday  .. there it was! My word. GRATEFUL.

My word is GRATEFUL!

Now, let me tell you, that word makes a difference. The trick is to remind myself of it in the midst of disappointment, worry creeping in, feelings of inadequacy, frustration, sadness, depression raising its ugly head, anger over things beyond my control … GRATEFUL chases it all away!  

Notice my word is not gratefulness, but I feel gratefulness when I am grateful. :)

Here is the definition for gratefulness: 

  • warm friendly feelings of gratitude [synonyms: thankfulness, appreciativeness]

The definition for grateful:

  • 1: feeling or showing gratitude; “a grateful heart”; “grateful for the tree’s shade”; “a thankful smile” [synonym:thankful] [antonym: ungrateful]
  • 2: affording comfort or pleasure; “the grateful warmth of the fire”

When negative feelings or thoughts come upon me, I remind myself that I am grateful or I have much to be grateful for and those negatives are washed away. It’s an attitude of gratitude that has to become habit for it to be most effective. (I did remember to thank God from my grateful heart for the help He sent me.)

Our Canadian Thanksgiving was October 8, USA’s Thanksgiving is coming up on November 22, so it seems quite fitting to have this word now. Try it out and see what it does for you.

My questions to you are:

  1. Do life’s struggles set your writing free? or does writing free you during times of stress?
  2. If you write when life hits you hard, how do you do it?
  3. Do you have a word to live by for this year?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

Book Review: Watching Jimmy – by Nancy Hartry

Book: Watching Jimmy
Author: Nancy Hartry
Publisher: Tundra Books
Date: September 11, 2012 (reprint edition)
Genre: Historical Fiction for young people (age 9 and up)
Pages: 160; paperback
Price: $9.95
My Rating: exciting and absorbing from start to finish
 

I received this book from Library Thing in exchange for an honest review.

This little book was a surprise. I knew it was coming, but I didn’t expect it to be so big for its size. By that I mean, this book may be small but it is jam-packed – in such a nice way.

Nancy Hartry grabbed my attention right away with how she began this tale. She set the scene in chapter one, then hit with a gut-wrenching punch in chapter two. Even so, this interesting – yet painful – story that’s easy to read, easy to follow, easy to understand, is hard to put down until the end. And once there it evokes a satisfied sigh and leaves the reader thinking it all over.

Carolyn and Jimmy were best friends. When Jimmy got hurt, Uncle Ted’s story was that he fell off the swing. What nobody knows is that Carolyn saw the whole thing, but who can she tell? And what good would it do?

This story is set in 1958, after World War II, during a time of struggle and recovery in Canada, a historical time that will change the nation. Nancy Hartry writes in a way that illuminates that era without the reader realizing there is a history lesson being presented.

This book is well worth the read. It is very believable and captures the reader for a step back in time to learn what life in Canada was like then, and what it means to be courageous, dedicated, and truthful.

Watching Jimmy by Nancy Hartry was a finalist for the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, the Geoffrey Bilson Award for Historical Fiction for Young People, and the Ontario Library Association’s Golden Oak Award.

If you enjoy historical fiction you will certainly appreciate Watching Jimmy by Nancy Hartry.

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)

Does duct tape (or duck tape) help your writing?

I LIKE DUCT TAPE.

I can’t tell you specifically why, but I really like duct tape. I find uses for it quite often. If something is broken or loose or needs a patch, I’ll be the one to say, “Did you try duct tape? Use duct tape on it.”

Often I have heard it called “duck tape”, which makes me laugh. Apparently it has been called one or the other since the 1940′s, and was useful as duck tape to WWII soldiers.

Have you ever watched The Red Green Show? It’s a popular Canadian sitcom that was on television from 1991 to 2006 in Canada and the United States – and continues in reruns. The main character, Red Green, found all kinds of crazy and ingenious ways to use duct tape. He would say it’s “the handyman’s secret weapon” because his motto was “if women don’t find you handsome they should at least find you handy.”

I have been saying for some time now that I have to find some duct tape in a colour other than the usual grey, and I want pink. Just because I like pink.

Look at what my daughter found when she was shopping in a local  hardware store recently –

Oh … my!  A whole display. And look at all the colours and patterns! She likes the zebra one — second one in on the bottom left.

I told my husband about it, and when I came home for my week off — look at what he had bought for me —

PINK DUCT TAPE!  What a guy!  :)

Now take a closer look –

The company picked up on the other name and marketed it. Duck tape duct tape. How clever! And the pink is called Funky Flamingo.  Hilarious!

How can I relate this to writing?  …

Have you ever been writing along and suddenly you are on what seems a totally wrong path for your story?

Perhaps your character starts acting out in a way you didn’t plan, or the plot takes an unexpected turn. Instead of trying to pull it all back to what you first had in mind, try going with it, ‘market it.’ Maybe that duct tape you thought you had turns out to be a roll of duck tape. Doubly good. Underneath it is the same, but on the surface you are about to go on a wonderful adventure that will be even more meaningful when pieced together.

Have you ever started out with one idea and ended up with something entirely different? Or with added twists that make your story even better?

Remember, duct tape … or duck tape … is used to hold things together, and to repair things, and to create new things. Have you used any lately, figuratively or for real? What difference did it make?

Thanks for reading, and … Creative Musings!  :)