Smells From Childhood


I reintroduced myself to black licorice the other week.  I was shopping, and suddenly I had a craving for something in the sweets isle.  However, I did not want my normal candy of choice, peanut M&M’s.  Noticing a box of Panda Licorice, childhood memories came flooding back to me! 


Grandpa’s red pickup permeated the smell of licorice!  Even his carport reeked with the smell of licorice, of which I could never understand because it was exposed to the open air. I thought the air would sweep the smell away.  I just convinced myself that Grandpa bought stockpiles of licorice, and hid it in every nook and cranny that he could find.  I absolutely love the smell and taste of licorice, because it was Grandpa’s smell. 


When the box of Panda Licorice was opened, and I smelled that unique oder tinkling my nose, I was back in the safety of my Grandpa’s lap, and  watching his his favorite show, wrestling.  It certainly was not my favorite show to watch, but in the name of love I was able to tolerate that one insane love of his!    


While I am writing about the smells I associate with Grandpa, I have to mention this.  Grandpa was a rockhound.  Mom often has  said that they couldn’t go to the beach without both of her parents butts ending  up in the air, as they were always on the hunt for agates. 


Grandpa had a barn full of rocks and equipment that he turned rocks into gems with.  There were saws, sanders, buffers, Polishers, and everything else that could be needed that kept his hobby running.  I loved sitting in the corner of the barn, and watching him work with his rocks; making some into jewelry.  It was his element and his passion.  I loved the pure earthy smell of the rocks being grinded!  Grandpa never went anywhere without a small handfull of rocks rattling in his pockets, just waiting for his grandchildren to find a unique stone that we had to have.  


What smells instantly transport you back into your childhood? 

Posted at 9:03 AM by

Earnestly Seeking Want-To-Be Bloggers


Over the summer, my co-workers Rob, Amy, and I have been learning Sharepoint, the program we’re using to post blogs. Personally, I am finding that sharepoint is really easy to work with. 


The only real complaint I have with the program, is that I’m a slow typer, and if I don’t save my work often, the program will time me out.  So, what I usually do is type my next entry in some other program like word perfect, and then cut and paste the finished entry into the body of the blog. 


All too often, I will go back and read the posts I have published, and find some errors.  It’s simple to go back and make my corrections.  However, once you have published a post, it remains published.  I am sure  you can just delete an entry if you choose to, but I have yet to try it. 


I was even amazed that I figured out how to post pictures. Although, I vowed never to post photos, because that’s getting too private.  One day, just for my curiosity sake, I wanted to see how hard it was to upload one picture.  Within five minutes I had it figured out!  What can I say after that, just that I was hooked!  If I can figure it out, then I know  you will have no problems posting pictures, as well. 


I will admit to you, that I had hoped I would have more posts published by this time. However, I think I am speeding up a bit.   Last week, Amy, Rob,  and I were discussing creating a community blog.  Each blogger would have their own blog site, except when we publish a post, it will also go into a community blog.  That way, if we create a regular audience of readers, at least one of us would keep our readers supplied with new material to read.  We are hoping you all will want to start blogging. 


I believe with every fiber that is in me, that everybody has a story to tell.  Something that makes you unique from everyone else.  I was born on my cousin’s birthday.  I know that’s not too uncanny.  However, the fact that we were both born with cerebral palsy is definitely unique.  He had a great influence in my life.  I will most likely post something about him one of these days. Stay tuned! 


What is your unique story?  Do you have it in your mind? 


I have a few writing tips to share with you:


1.   Have your niche, which is the subject that you know the best to write on.  However,  write about other subjects as well.  if we write about the same thing all the time, our readers will grow bored with the blog.  


2.  Pace yourself. Don’t burn yourself out by thinking you have to write an entry every day.    it’s perfectly okay to write one or two posts a week, or even once a month if that’s the only time you can spare. we know you have a life to lead.  So, enjoy your life, and while you’re at it, collect things to write about.  


3.  Writing short posts is okay, I have found out that writing long entries takes a lot of forethought and energy on my part.  By writing short posts, I can generate other entries faster.  However, if from time to time, I might have  the creative juices flowing, I’m going to keep writing until I’m good and ready to finish. 


4.  Have opinions. I might not necessary like a bloggers writing style, however I find myself returning to their blogs, because I’m curious about what opinions they are going to express today.  


5.  Encourage participation. Keep your blog interesting by asking your readers questions.  When readers post comments to a blog entry a new dynamic opens for both blogger and reader.  They are able to communicate back and forth, and exchange thoughts and ideas, and in that process  new friends are made!     


6.  Mix up your topics: reading about the same things gets boring.  Nobody likes a broken record.    


7.  Explore new areas: be diversified. 


8.  Write about your own experiences and interests. Keep your blog real and uniquely you, while maintaining a level of privacy.  For instance I never mention what town I live in, and I change names to protect the innocent. 


9.  If you are not sure readers will think your blog would be interesting to them.  Try this exercise:  Step into their shoes for a little while, and see if is interesting from their viewpoint.   


Are you wondering who can start blogging via Sharepoint?   We want Self Advocates who are willinng to share what is like to live with their disability.  We also would like to see our co-workers at CDRC contributing to this blog sitde as well.  You can write about a number of things: your research projects, your favorite restaurants, funny life storie, timely issues, ect.      


If anyone is interested in becoming a blogger, post a comment telling me your wishes.  I will see to it that you get hooked up! 

Posted at 3:07 PM by