Check out the cute stuff my mom sent to me for an Easter care package! She did really good this year! It definitely helped cheer me up since I had been feeling pretty lousy lately between my depression and my chronic health issues.
I got my first OwlCrate Jr subscription box! This book box is for middle grade books and each month a theme is chosen revolving around that month’s book. This month the theme was “Birds of a Feather” and the book is The Simple Art of Flying by Cory Leonardo. I chose OwlCrate Jr instead of the regular OwlCrate box because I thought I might enjoy the middle grade books better than the YA books. I do love YA books as well, but well-written middle grade fiction holds a special place in my heart.
Here is what came in the box:
– The book (obviously lol)
– Author-signed bookplate
– Letter from the author
– OwlCrate Jr monthly magazine
– National Geographic’s Ultimate Explorer Bird Field Guide
– Pineapple scented tropical birds stickers
– Flamingo gel pen
– Mini owl plush toy
– Parrot keychain
– Spoiler card and card for next month’s theme (which will be “Crack the Code”)
I loved this first box and am excited to see what else they send in the future! I’m halfway through the book and love it so far. It is a sweet, sad, and funny story about a pair of brother and sister parrots living in a pet shop. Right now I just got to the part of the story where the siblings are split up when one is adopted and it is breaking my heart a little.
I love the bird field guide, the owl plushie, and the flamingo pen. Plus, I’ve already made a couple ACEO collage artworks with the stickers:
(Art available for sale on my Ebay store!)
Here is my tweet-sized entry for this week’s photo prompt Twittering Tales challenge:
The train draws near in a cloud of fog – the headlight shining through the mist just enough to illuminate the faces of those waiting to board.
I tip my hat downwards to hide my own expression. I do not want to see. I do not want to be seen. Human attachments will hinder my plans.
with the hair
on their heads
(Poetry by Maranda Russell, marandarussell.com)
The prompt for this week’s Twittering Tales writing challenge immediately brought back sad memories of an ill-fated tour of a great entertainer (one of my all-time personal favorites), so I went with it. Here is the photo prompt and my entry:
“It was meant to be my swan song. I pulled out all the stops…the moonwalk, the sequins, the white glove, the gangster getup for Smooth Criminal.
It was the only chance my children would ever have to see me live on tour. When I said This Is It, I meant it, but it came too soon…”
I wanted to add the video and song by the same title as well. It is a beautiful, though sad song and the video features footage of rehearsals for the tour that never was…
While reading a book called “Flash! Writing the Very Short Story”, written by John Dufresne, I came across the writing form called a abecedarian. This writing form is where you write a story or other form of creative writing where each new sentence starts with a new letter of the alphabet, going sequentially from A-Z of course. I thought it sounded fun and tried it myself, with a creative writing piece I call On Climate Change:
Another world is not an option. Before we give up on this one, let’s at least put up a fight.
Clean up your mess. Don’t think you can cut corners. Everyone has to learn to work together. Failing to do so, may lead to the annihilation of us all.
Give up the fossil fuels. How? Imagination – learn to use yours. Join together, share ideas. Keep trying. Let no temporary failures steer you off course.
Make clear the risks we face. None of us live alone, quit acting like we do. Open your eyes, open your mind, open your heart.
Practice makes perfect, but persistence wins the game. Quit fighting each other and fight the corrupt system. Right the wrongs that have persisted too long.
Stop worshiping consumerism. Turn your trash into treasure. Undo the damage our selfishness has created.
Voice your appreciation for the strong, proud nature of our mother planet. Watch how she rallies to protect her own. X-ray her heart and share the joy you find within.
YOU hold the future in your collective hands. Zealously protect and celebrate your beautiful home while she is still beautiful.
I hope you liked this little writing exercise. It was indeed fun and I think I might try it again sometime and maybe do a fiction piece.
Here is the photo prompt and my entry for this week’s Twittering Tales writing challenge hosted by Kat Myrman:
Olivia sat on the edge of her daughter’s unmade bed. She ran her fingers over the ridges and bulges of the white blankets. She leaned down to sniff the fluffy pillow at the head of the bed, then laid her head down on it heavily.
She’s really gone. The pain hit hard and fast.
(Note: The photo prompt this week really reminded me of the novel I am currently reading, “The Night Olivia Fell”, by Christina McDonald. So, I stole the character name for the writing exercise.)
It took me a couple days to come up with something this week for the Twittering Tales hosted by Kat Myrman, but I finally have something. As I explained before, this writing challenge is to simply write a short story, or poem, or whatever you want as long as it is under 280 characters (the length of a tweet).
Here is this week’s picture prompt and my entry for this week below (photo from Pixabay):
“Route 66? I remember that road.”
“Great, thanks for the reminiscing, but that doesn’t tell us how to get there.”
“That is a road you only find by following your heart, not a map.”
“Thanks Big Bird, but we aren’t exactly looking for Sesame Street!”
“Shame..I could get you there too.”
Lately I’ve been trying random book subscription boxes just to try to figure out which one I want to get on a regular basis. For January/February, I tried the following two boxes:
This first box was the January Book Drop subscription. I picked the middle grade option, although I was torn between that and the young adult option. This subscription box sends you one book per month (along with a card about the book and little extras like bookmarks) and is pretty cheap (about $10 including S&H for this shipment). The Book Drop is run by an independent bookstore, which makes buying it even better since I like to support small businesses.
The book they sent this month was Winterhouse by Ben Guterson. I really enjoyed this mystery novel! The main character is a book nerd and loves to do puzzles, just like me! I did figure out the plot of the book pretty early on though, so the mystery wasn’t all that hard for me.
Here is the second box I received, this one in early February:
This box was from Kids Bookcase Club. It cost $9.99 plus S&H. You get three kids books a month. This was the 7-8 year old box. Out of the three books they sent, my favorite by far was Terrific by Jon Agee. This picture book is sarcastic and hilarious! I love the grumpy old man who is the main character! The Very Fairy Princess was a cute picture book, but not exactly my taste. The Animal Planet Dolphin Rescue book was a young reader chapter book and it was cute and interesting, but obviously a simple read. For next month’s box, I decided to up the age to the preteen box to see what kind of middle grade books they send.
For the upcoming month I am also trying out the Scribbler subscription box for writers and the SpearCraft Book Box (which comes with all kinds of cool reader goodies)! So stay tuned!!!