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Archive for October, 2016

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Thought I’d share these beautiful blooms with you, because I can’t get enough of their bright happiness. I’ve been purchasing them from my friends at Better Together Farm throughout the summer, along with their exquisite organic vegetables and herbs.

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I like to buy two — one for my table and one to brighten Mom’s & Dad’s days.

Sometimes they last for almost two weeks. I’ll be sad to see the organic farm season close for my friends at the end of October. I’ll have to wait again until March for their superior products.

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I encourage you to take the opportunity to pass along the gift of a bouquet, whether you have the privilege to gather a wildflower bouquet or find such a great bargain as I have. It’s a wonderful way to bring smiles and cheer.

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I awoke this morning to find this happy vignette that my daughter had arranged on our rustic dining table that she and my dad built. (I’ll tell you that story some time, too.)

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For now, I’ll leave you with this beautiful poem:

Autumn Fires
by Robert Louis Stevenson
In the other gardens
And all up the vale,
From the autumn bonfires
See the smoke trail!

Pleasant summer over
And all the summer flowers,
The red fire blazes,
The grey smoke towers.

Sing a song of seasons!
Something bright in all!
Flowers in the summer,
Fires in the fall!

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And the first stanza of another:

To Autumn
by John Keats
SEASON of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss’d cottage-trees
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more
And still more later flowers for the bees
Until they think warm days will never cease
For Summer has o’er-brimm’d their clammy cells.

***

Here’s a wonderful resource for you. You can even search poetry by topic, such as “flowers” or “autumn.”

Do you have a favorite poem about flowers or autumn?

And what’s on your music playlist today? Mine is “Porcelain,” an album by Helen Jane Long — a lovely, wistful, piano instrumental to play in the background while writing.

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My crazy spelling idea, placed among Oklahoma artifacts, including my favorite–rose rocks (barite)! We’ll talk about that in the future, too.

It’s nice to return to blogging. It’s already an exercise in tightening up my skills. Writing the title of this article was a challenge. Titles and subtitles and headlines are a challenge for me. It’s like condensing everything you want to say down into just a few words that will grab the reader and inspire them to continue reading. See, I want to talk about colloquialisms today and if I had titled this, “My Top Five Oklahoma Colloquialisms,” you probably would have skipped out on the fun. (Maybe it’s only fun to word nerds, but I think it’s fun.)

Anyway, in the past I’ve been confused by the differences between colloquialisms, jargon,  and such. Here’s a great explanation I found where they define the words and give examples of usage and even a little quiz at the end, if you are so inclined. (I know. It’s official. I’m a giant word nerd.)

For now, let’s skip the definitions and get right into the language and you’ll see what I mean.

There may be other segments of the South/or central regions of the United States that say “fixin’ to,” but in Oklahoma, people say that a lot.

“I’m fixin’ to go to the dog swap. Do you need anything? Chickens? Guineas? Goat?”

“She’s fixin’ to call him back as soon as she finds her phone.”

“I’m fixin’ to give you a whoopin’ you’ll never forget.”

See? Now you know what I mean, right?

I think one of the top colloquialisms that Oklahoma is known for is, “Ya’ll.” It is a contraction for “you all” and is normally used when speaking to a group of two or more people, but not always.

“Ya’ll calm down in there, or I’m goin’ to give you that whoopin’ we talked about earlier.”

“Ya’ll need anything? Dr. Pepper? Iced tea? Mountain Dew?”

“Ya’ll look like you’re itchin’ to jump in the water? You hot?” (See what I did there? Threw a  handful of colloquialisms at you in two sentences, in each example.)

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I’m thinking this needs to be the title of the chapter in the memoir where I tell all of these fun stories and more. :^)

My personal favorite is “idn’t it.” Mercy. When I catch myself saying “idn’t it,” I  cringe. Why do I say that? I don’t know. Because I live here, I guess.

“Idn’t it odd that she suddenly disappeared when the rent was due?”

“Idn’t he a sorry potlicker?” (Sorry–I’ll explain “sorry” and “potlicker” on another word- nerd day.)

“Idn’t she a sight for sore eyes?” (That one, too.)

Obviously, “idn’t it” stands in for “isn’t” and I have no explanation. It’s regional, because I’m not the only one who says it. Thank goodness.

“Howdy” is a good one. You probably already know that it’s used in place of “Hi” or “Hello,” but it’s considered less formal and more friendly. But it can be used in formal settings–just depends on who you are and your personality. (Which is the same with any of the above-mentioned colloquialisms because they have nothing to do with your current status, education, or job title. It’s regional, as I stated previously. It’s probably not a credit to an English major/editor/writer to chat with your co-workers in this manner:

“I’m fixin’ to send out an email inviting ya’ll to the next potluck lunch. Idn’t that a good idea?” Mm hmm.

It has nothing to do with living in the city or country, wearing Prada or Faded Glory, heels or boots, but you’d probably better live in Oklahoma. Or Texas. Or thereabouts. Or people will look at you cross-eyed and walk away. Quickly.

The last one is another personal favorite, just because my dad says it to be funny. “Far,” as in “fire,” and not how far you have to travel to reach the fire. Far.

“He preached hellfar and brimstone again.”

“I tried to light that far, but the wind came sweepin’ down the plain.”

“It’s hotter ‘n far today, idn’t it?”

Yep. (There’s another one for you.)

So, if you travel and a bunch of Okies are having a conversation and you feel like you’re visiting a foreign country, you very well may be. But Okies aren’t the only ones. Here’s another link to a great article that gives you a visual on this very thing. Some of the topics are pretty hilarious, too.

Hope you’ve enjoyed and that you understand what I’m talkin’ about. If not, ask questions in the comment section. And leave a comment listing your favorite colloquialism from your area. That should be fun!

 

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BEAUTY IN THE PARK, DURING TRANQUIL MOMENTS

It’s been a while since I’ve written. It’s been a busy time for me, with much writing on a professional level, but I’ve missed the easy-going, interesting, enlightening conversations that can take place by blogging. I’ve considered some different ideas for re-entering Blog World and finally ended up thinking that life can get complicated on its own. I’d like to keep this simple. Plus, as a writer, it’s nice to have a place to hone my skills in an easy manner — practice, and connect with other people who are interested in what I have to say, aside from social media, which can sometimes end up too complicated.

My interests tend to lean toward the eclectic — many and varied. Of late, I’ve spent some free time researching genealogy, which involves digging deeply into my heritage. I am currently thrilled with the long Scots lines that I’ve located, and although I’m proud of my ancestry, I’m particularly enamored with the Celtic aspects. I’m planning a trip. I have a long bucket list, but this trip seems to be calling out the loudest. I think I’m just going to jump off and go. (I kept telling myself that I wanted to wait until I could stay for two or three months, but that seems unlikely for the near future, so I’ll plan something more reasonable and see what transpires.)

I wrote another novel this summer. Well, it started out as a memoir, with stories from our family. It ended up being a collection of the beginning of several more story ideas, as well as an entire first edit of one of my previous novels. (I know! That seems to be part of my creative process.) I had wrestled with editing my novels for too long. I knew I had to start somewhere. I’m still dealing with what to do next. There is too much information on publishing and self-publishing and I get bogged down. I need to simplify this process, too. I really think the next step is to lay it all out and review it and edit again with my daughter who is also a writer.

This summer I also spent six weeks motivating myself back into better physical shape by taking the prodding of my daughter and joining the Couch to 5K movement (through the C25K app.) It’s actually eight weeks, but I made it for six weeks and actually felt much better. Then, I fell ill and have remained so for an entire month! Talk about frustrating. I spent time taking supplements and learning more and more about building my health through the immune system and then took a very hard hit. Well, it’s back to square one, but with some beautiful autumn days, hopefully, I can begin again.

Occasionally I’ve mentioned some writer’s quotes that inspire me. It might be fun to end some posts with some of my own. Quotes have to begin somewhere. It might as well be here. On writing — I know you’ve heard this many times before and it’s been attributed to many authors, but it’s true — just write.

 

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