Tuesday, December 30, 2014

Farewell babyhood...

What do you do with a crib that no longer passes child safety laws?  Ours broke last year, in our move to this new house. With a broken side, clumsily secured using zip straps, passing the crib on to a worthy newborn is no longer an option so basically, once Brooklynn was finished with it, it was bound for the dump.

Well, it was bittersweet, but we moved our little monkey into a big girl bed.  She wasn't sleeping in the crib anymore, anyway.  She's taken to calling our bed, "MINE!" so it was time.  This crib was a very good crib for us for 10 years and I'm not ready to let go of it completely, so I decided to try my hand at something I'd seen passed around on Facebook a while back.


So for $26 and change, I picked up a vinyl table cloth and double sided tape, some plastic bins from the dollar store, and some colourful clothes pins.  Then with a screw driver, pair of scissors, and my glue gun, I made our baby crib into a desk for the girls' room.  I basically took the drop side off the crib, moved the bottom back up to the highest level, zip strapped the bins onto the inside of the rails (I love those zip straps!), and hot glued clothespins around the inside of the "desk."  I used the table cloth to cover the bottom of the crib and re-cover the trashed kids' folding chairs.  It was a very fast, very fun project and all the kids have had their turn working on their artwork at the new desk.
I am very, very pleased with the results!  It's not as professional looking as the ones on Pinterest, but the girls seem to love it and they're impressed.

Now I have to decide what I want to do with the offending drop side that I removed from the crib.   There are plenty of ideas on Pinterest.  Here's what's in the running so far...

A drying rack for the laundry room
                                                   A book case for one of the kids' rooms
 Or a little something for ME... a craft storage rack for my scrapbook room.

They're all very tempting... might have to keep my eyes peeled for discarded baby furniture from here on out.  

Saturday, December 13, 2014

"Kids Say the Darndest Things" is already taken...


I've had an idea for a book in mind for a few years now. It's going to be a compilation of short essays and funny things that my kids say.  Mostly anecdotes I've already blogged or used as my facebook status updates.  I've already got a plethora of really great material and it just keeps coming.   

I've also already started writing it in snippets here and there.  Here's an oldie but goodie sneak peek of one of the first page:

I was sitting on Alex's bed with him tucking him in.  He stuck his hand in something brown and slimy.  He said "Eww, what is that?"  

I determined, upon closer look and smell, that it was the remains of a very ripe, mushy banana (that quite conceivably went through the washer since I just pulled his quilt out of the dryer an hour ago.) I said "It's okay, it's just some banana."

and he said...

"No, I think maybe a fruit fly pooped on my bed." 

Anyway, I've had the title and the cover image in my head forever, but up until now I've never been able to properly capture it on film.  Until last week...

"Reflections on Motherhood."
by Laura Freeman


Saturday, December 6, 2014

Alex's First Band Concert

Alex joined the band this year.  We had the pleasure of seeing his class in concert! He goes to the High School twice a week with grade five kids from the other two schools.  They've only been playing for about 7 weeks now, due to the late start in school.  I think they did a fantastic job.  It's so great to hear him practicing his clarinet (he's in the second row on the left, in glasses --- yup another first for him this year). I really hope he decides to go all the way through band to graduation as we also had the pleasure of listening to the grade six band, the 7 and 8 band, and the high school band.



I had a bored toddler to contend with while I was trying to film this so the first bit of the video is shaky and has some bored toddler background noise.  The nice thing about living in a small community is that there is always someone around that you know.  One of my foster parents kindly offered to film for me.  She did a great job.  So thank you to her!  



Anyway, enjoy our budding musician's first time in concert!  (And thanks again, Mom and Dad, for shopping for his concert ensemble).

Tuesday, November 11, 2014

Drinking Brooky Juice

Came around the corner to see this... so of course I grabbed my camera!  Part of me is really glad I hadn't wasted my time washing the floor this morning. The other part of me is kind of wishing I HAD washed the floor this morning!

Sunday, November 2, 2014

National Novel Writing Month

In 2008, whilst on maternity leave, I stumbled across a little event that I pretty much promptly dismissed as slightly crazy.  In 2009, I googled it again, life being a little less hectic than when Kirstin was an infant.  I decided to announce my participation in Nanowrimo (to my husband only) and I threw myself head first into the task of writing a 50,000 word novel in thirty days.

I succeeded.  And it felt good!  My novel, "Patchwork Saturdays" still hangs out on my laptop (the third laptop I've had since then, actually) incomplete and neglected.

In 2010, spurred on by the previous year's success, I pulled up another neglected project, "Undesirable", a story I started writing in 2007, after Connor's midwife assisted birth.  I added approximately 200 pages to the 30 pages I already had on the go.  I called that a success too.

In 2011, I wrote a story about a girl who finds herself unceremoniously dumped at her grandfather's door.  I kind of like that one, and I actually managed to wrap the story up in 50,000 words.  I haven't read it since, but if I remember correctly, it's got some neat potential.

In 2012, on November 3rd, I gave birth to our fourth child, my daughter, Brooklynn.  I got a late start that month, about a week into the month, but I managed to add another 50,000 words to Undesireable, while nursing a very sleepy baby round the clock, bringing it to a somewhat solid completion.

Last year, 2013, I started another novel, based on a crazy dream about a road trip and visit to IHOP.  That novel, Journey, is about half finished.  It, too, has some neat potential but I haven't touched it since November 30th.

So, here we are, November 1st, and again I'm faced with the challenge, and thrill, of committing 50,000 words to paper (well, who are we kidding, to a word document, nobody writes novels by hand anymore).  The sensible me would take one of my earlier novels and finish it.  And I almost did.  But writing from scratch, with a completely blank slate, is SO much more fun then doing clean-up on something that floats between cycles of literary potential and rubbish.

So, here I go with unfinished novel number five.  It doesn't have a name.  And until this afternoon, it didn't have a plot or a setting or anything.  Just a very vague concept that I wanted to write a (insert spoiler here) novel.  In fact, come to think of it, my narrator doesn't yet have a name.

So... because I'm so terrible at finishing things, and years after my proclamation that I'm going to write a novel, publish it, then write another, until the royalties are such that I can retire from my government job and spend my days creating, I've decided (and yes, I may regret this) to write this year's novel online so that people (you) can read it while I create it.

Dumb?  Maybe.

Smart?  Probably not.

But what's the point in calling myself a writer if I have no readers to write for?

So, I've started a new blog... " http://shewritesontheside.blogspot.ca/ " where I am going to be posting my novel every night.  Kind of like a serial, War of the Worlds type story, except without the alien encounter.  It'll probably be backwards, so you might have to do some digging, but it'll be there in its entirety by the end of the month, unfinished or not.  I debated posting it here, but I've already strayed so far away from "Laura's Family" with this blog, that I kind of thought that it was time to clean it up a bit and start putting my writing elsewhere.

Please be kind to me.  November is all about Quantity writing, not Quality writing.  It's all about getting the story on paper... and fixing up the typos and plot holes later. And there will be typos and plot holes.  I assure you!  People's names will change through the course of the month, pets and friends important to the story on the 1st, will vanish inexplicably by the 30th.  Loose ends will be left untied.  Brilliant foreshadowing will lead to... nothing.  It's the nature of Nanowrimo, for me.  I don't start with an outline, I make it all up as I go along.  So, if you choose to follow along, I ask that you be patient with me.  You're reading a first draft and, according to Hemingway, "The first draft of anything is shit!"

I would love to see your comments through the month.  Suggestions, questions, etc.  I may not take any of them into account (in the first draft) or maybe I will.  We shall see.

Anyway, enjoy my first 1800+ words.  I've enjoyed writing them... and now that I have a vague notion in my head about where I want this story to go... I'm looking forward to adding more tomorrow.

Laura

Friday, July 25, 2014

Puppy, Toddler, or Both...

I haven't blogged in quite some time.  Between my brother's Newfoundland nuptials and the recent acquisition of our newest family member, life has been hopping.  Now in the throes of our busy birthday season, it's tempting to avoid the computer and spend time outside enjoying summer.  But, I thought I'd better post an update before the photos get too outdated, because both my babies are growing like weeds. They're just so darn cute.

Meet "Domino", our 11-week old Boston Terrier... 






And... just for fun, a quiz!  

1. Lying on the kitchen floor, eating corn on the cob

   □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Sitting in the kennel splashing in the water dish

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Chasing the cat, growling

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Jangling the wind chimes hanging from the back door

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Running naked through the house

    □ PUPPY    □ TODDLER     BOTH

  1. Slipping under the baby gate to join the children downstairs

□ PUPPY □ TODDLER BOTH

  1. Tackling the cat

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Climbing on the top of the couch to watch the children playing outside

    □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Comes running whenever a door is open

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Bit me on the thigh

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Howls at three in the morning

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Peed on the bathroom floor

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Peed on the kitchen floor

    □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Peed in the potty

     □ PUPPY     □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Tried to eat the potty

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Had a red 'permanent marker' stain on her head

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Drags the leash around the house, yelping

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Greets me at the door when I get home from work

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Snores

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Doesn't understand “sit” and “stay”

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Falls asleep on my chest

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Doesn't listen when I say “Get Down!”

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Ran down the street ignoring me when I called her back

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER       BOTH

  1. Knocked a piggy bank on the floor and played with the pieces

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Sat in the garden eating raspberries off the bushes.

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER      BOTH

  1. Stole our hearts!

     □ PUPPY      □ TODDLER     BOTH






Friday, May 30, 2014

Bragging Rights

Okay, it's been a long time since I've posted photos of the kids, which was the original intention of this blog, by the way.  I let my beautiful, photos spamming, kid blog get tarnished by silly things like creative writing.  Enough of that, you need a kid fix, don't you?  

Well, I just happened to have received some gorgeous ones today and I can't help but share them!

Enjoy!
  
Alex, age 9

Connor, age 7
 Kirstin, age 6
 Brooklynn, age 1.5

Wednesday, April 30, 2014

C'est fini!

And now for our final (yet still optional!) prompt. Today, as befits the final poem of NaPoWriMo, I challenge you to write a poem of farewell. It doesn’t have to be goodbye forever — like I said, NaPoWriMo will be back again next year. If you need a little inspiration, you might find some in perusing this selection of goodbye-and-good-luck poems from the Poetry Foundation website.
Happy writing, everyone, and good-bye, and see you next year!


The terzanelle is a modified villanelle. It uses the terza rima's interlocked rhyme pattern, but fits the villanelle form of five triplets and a quatrain. In addition, the middle line of the 1st stanza becomes the third line of the next stanza, and so on, such that the terzanelle is a huge pain, but worth the effort and determination to finish.



A Farewell to April

It is difficult word to say
When one must summon an honest farewell
Farewell to April, welcome sweet May

It does not pay to consistently dwell
On the sodden grass and cool damp air
When one must summon an honest farewell

April rolls out quietly, brown and bare
Signs of life emerge, so tentative
On the sodden grass and cool damp air

The birds return and the flowers live
As the month comes to a final close
Signs of life emerge, so tentative

There's poetry in spring, sweeter than prose
Ceasing with the last of winter's remains
As the month comes to a final close

Farewell dank earth, farewell melting rains
It is a difficult word to say
Ceasing with the last of winter's remains
Farewell to April, welcome sweet May

-Laura Freeman-
April 30, 2014

Tuesday, April 29, 2014

WTF kind of a prompt is that?????

Monday, April 28, 2014

Status

I took a lot of poetic license interpreting today's prompt: "Today I challenge you to find a news article, and to write a poem using (mostly, if not only) words from the article! You can repeat them, splice them, and rearrange them however you like. Although the vocabulary may be “just the facts,” your poem doesn’t have to be — it doesn’t even have to be about the subject of the news article itself. Happy writing!"  Since I rarely watch the news anymore, I glean most of my current events from my "news feed", which is, arguably, mostly rubbish. So, here is a snippet of what my "friends" have to say, today.

Today on Facebook
No one announced their pregnancy
Or bad-mouthed their boyfriend

No one posted a funny quip
about their children's quirkiness,
Or slung offensive thoughts
About abortion or gay rights.

Instead, I learned that:

Your chocolate shell is a vessel
In search of music
To my fetal family,
Celebrate
Pickled ram testicles
Does anyone else's skin crawl?
This has got to stop,
It's only been twenty-four years
For a long time
I didn't even notice.
Blame your sister!
I always enjoy those afternoons
Supported instead of judged.
Time to get a move on'
Love is louder.
If you want to interrupt, feel free,
What's the worst that can happen?

It was a slow day on my wall.
Time to socialize with real people.
Alas, they're all sitting front of their screens

Knackered now

From their status updates!

-Laura Freeman-
April 28, 2014

Sunday, April 27, 2014

When I Was Your Age

When I was your age,
We watched tv in black and white,
Cartoons on Saturday morning,
And occasionally Disney
On Sunday night.

When I was your age,
I knew how to dial a phone,
And I had my conversations
Attached to the wall,
Not wandering cordless through the home.

When I was your age,
My teacher wrote with chalk,
And when we wanted to chat
With one another,
We actually had to talk.

When I was your age,
My running shoes had laces,
My bicycle had three speeds,
And we didn't own a helmet,
To protect our precious faces.

When I was your age,
We passed notes folded elaborately,
Skyping was a thing of science fiction,
And my pen pal 
Actually wrote to me.

When I was your age,
Tweeting was something 
Only birds would know,
A face book was my High School year book,
And pinning was something
You did before you sew.

When I was your age,
There were prizes in our cereal,
Restaurants were for special treats,
And we washed with ordinary soap 
Not labelled anti-bacterial.

When I was your age,
I had to pay a quarter
To use a phone that wasn't mine,
But heck, it could have been worse,
Your father had a party line!

When I was your age,
Thirty seven was practically geriatric,
I never imagined youth would leave me,
And that Father Time would play
This rather dirty trick.

When I was your age,
Life was a little less convenient,
And yet we still survived.
I used to dream about the wonders of the future,
And, my children, that future has arrived!

-Laura Freeman-
April 27, 2014




Saturday, April 26, 2014

A Curtel Sonnet

Now for our prompt (optional, as always). Today’s prompt comes to us from Vince Gotera, who wrote his “family member” poem for Day 20 in the form of a curtal sonnet. As Vince explains, the curtal sonnet is shorter than the normal, fourteen line sonnet. Instead it has a first stanza of six lines, followed by a second stanza of four, and then closes with a half-line. The form was invented in the 1800s by Gerard Manley Hopkins, who used it in his famous poem “Pied Beauty”. So for today, I challenge you to give the curtal sonnet a whirl. It doesn’t need to rhyme — though it can if you like — and feel free to branch out beyond iambic pentameter. Happy writing!

April Showers

The air stagnates, heavy before the rain,
Dark crowds roll in obscuring my vision,
Of the sun, so welcome in April morn.
I find myself wishing for light again
And we scurry to complete our mission
Intent to beat out the impending storm.
Before the clouds release on us their wrath,
Swirling, and gathering; We quicken our pace,
And race for home taking the shortest path,
A spring walk cut short; Droplets tease my face,
Before the rain.

Laura Freeman
April 26, 2014

Error

Error, Error, Error

I stared at the screen, my brain in a haze,
It's easy, they'd said, it's online these days!

Error, Error, Error

Just fill in a few details, point and click,
But when I try it, I'm missing a trick.

Error, Error, Error

Login failed... do a password reset,
A jumble of numbers and letters, and yet...

Error, Error, Error

What?  I'm sure that's the password, that's got to be it!
I just finished resetting, you piece of shit!

Error, Error, Error

Now the wheel keeps endlessly spinning,
The webpage is frozen, the computer is winning!

Error, Error, Error

Information is missing? Are you kidding me?
What field did I miss? Why are you screwing with me?

Error, Error, Error

Email support then wait days for a useless reply,
Or go back to the office and tear a strip off the guy!

Error, Error, Error

Aah, customer service, in English, back in the day,
Meant speaking to someone who knew what to say

Error, Error, Error

Now everything is online and the assumption is that,
Wifi is in every house and in every flat

Error, Error, Error

Instead of standing in line for the next available clerk
I sit on my phone, at my screen, like a jerk!

Error, Error, Error

Technology is the way of the future? Bullshit!
Oh, how I miss carbon paper in triplicate!

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Sonnet - of sorts

Watch and Learn

The mirror is my enemy, it reflects,
An aging woman where once a girl stood,
Flabby and greying, the image infects,
And they watch and they learn, as they know they should.
"I can't eat that," I say, "it's not on my plan."
They nod in agreement and take it in.
I poke at my stomach, adjust my waistband,
Count calories by day and by night I binge.
So many flaws, and so much to detest,
A constant struggle to love what I see,
To ensure the generational bequest,
Is what I want them to inherit from me.
I need to see beauty, regardless my size,
When I see myself through my daughters' eyes.

-Laura Freeman-
April 24, 2014

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

It's sidewalk chalk season again!!!

There once were some children, all four,
Who liked to create art out of doors,
They took sidewalk chalk,
And marked up the walk,
Which was preferable than marking the floor.

-Laura Freeman-
April 23, 2014
I'm ever so thankful that my children are receiving a quality education in the public school system! ;)

Tuesday, April 22, 2014

On Earth Day...

To Our Children We Bequeath

Listen children to the story I share,
Pay attention as I tell you my tale,
We've entrusted you with the task to repair,
What we've abysmally failed.

The earth was ours for the taking,
The fruits of her garden were grand,
Once rich with life in the making,
Unspoiled and pristine was the land.

Children, are you listening to me?
This is important, take heed,
Take a breath and a moment to see,
We have to stop all this greed.

The planet used to be healthy,
Lush, green and freely growing.
We harvested her and grew wealthy,
Reaped the rewards she was sowing.

But, alas, we took her for granted,
Grew self assured and arrogant,
We developed more than we planted,
Ignored the dire warnings she sent,

Filled her air with soot and debris,
Culled her species to extinction,
Poured our waste products into her seas,
Children, I speak with distinction.

Its unfair, to be sure, what we ask,
Your generation has debts to be paid,
We bequeath you the challenging task,
To clean up the mess that we made.

-Laura Freeman-
April 22, 2014

Monday, April 21, 2014

A Rondeau

Sidebar before I share my poem for the day: 

I've always admired people's craft rooms.  When I was growing up, my Mom had the neatest sewing room (not neat in "tidy" but neat in colourful and welcoming) and she spent a lot of time there creating beautiful works of arts like quilts and clothing and ultimately my wedding dress. She tried teaching me to sew, but I wasn't very good at it. But I did learn to love crafts from an early age and she's still my best crafting buddy (we're a bad influence on one another). We discovered scrapbooking back in '98 after Mom and I went to a workshop, my freshly developed wedding photos in hand. I've guess I've been trying to subconsciously replicate that 'sewing room' mentality ever since.  It started out with a closet in our apartment, then a bedroom in our house which shifted to a shared computer room when Alex was born and my craft space became his baby room. Then we moved to Vanderhoof (to a smaller house) and my craft supplies shared the computer room again.  Then Connor joined our family, and then shortly after, Kirstin.  After that my space became a closet, then some shelves in the living room, then finally the storage room in the basement, which served me well but I avoided the dark, dinginess regardless. After Brooklynn was born and we (belatedly) realized that our house was too small to raise four children in, we moved to this bigger, brighter house and now I have the most wonderful space to call mine.  It is a constant work in progress.  I don't craft and create nearly as often as I would like to, and sometimes I just don't have the energy to do so at all and go months on end avoiding it.  But when I do come in here, late at night, in the quiet bedtime hours, I sit down and feel this immense, indescribable peace fill me.  And then I stay up way too late indulging my creative side.  And in this upstairs, brightly lit, colourful, cluttered, inviting, inspirational space, I know that I love this house.

So, here's my poem, a "rondeau"  {A very famous rondeau, btw, is Flander's Fields]

"The rondeau’s form is not difficult to recognize: as it is known and practiced today, it is composed of fifteen lines, eight to ten syllables each, divided stanzaically into a quintet, a quatrain, and a sestet. The rentrement consists of the first few words or the entire first line of the first stanza, and it recurs as the last line of both the second and third stanzas. Two rhymes guide the music of the rondeau, whose rhyme scheme is as follows (R representing the refrain): aabba aabR aabbaR."

My Craft Room

Within my home, there exists a place
Where quietly slows life's chaotic pace
A place that brings me great tranquility
When I lose myself in creativity
Peace overwhelms me with her calming grace



As I cut and paste in my crafting space
Or when I write my stories, and lose the race
Lost in the fiction that lulls with reverie
Within my home there exists a place


An organized mind is a shameful waste
If imagination has no space
To blossom and create such grand beauty
A room with no walls for my children and me
Where quietly slows life's chaotic pace

Within my home there exists a place

-Laura Freeman-
April 21, 2014

Sunday, April 20, 2014

Lily's Tanka

Happy Easter!  I hope your day was a nice as ours.  As a result of the company we had all day, its 11:00 and I'm just sitting down to write my daily poem... so, it's going to be another short one again!

"And now for our (optional) prompt. Today I challenge you to write a poem in the voice of a member of your family. This can be a good way to try to distance yourself from your own experience, without reaching so far away from your own life that it’s hard to come up with specific, realistic details. But watch out! This type of exercise can also dredge up a lot of feelings. So if you think writing in the voice of your grandfather will be too heavy, maybe try the voice of your four-year-old niece. Four-year-old problems might be a little lighter in scope."

Lily's Tanka

They keep me captive
Feed me dry food and water
Call me abject names
But I will tolerate them
Cats will someday rule the world

-Laura Freeman-
April 20, 2014

Saturday, April 19, 2014

She Sells Seashells


Whilst out on the board walk, and facing the shore,
With her strawberry top and Peruvian hat,
She calls to the men, invites them to adore,
Her snout otter clam, what do they think of that?



She stretches out on the beach, with her leather donax,
They come in droves at her profession of love,
For the incised moon; Her patrons stop in their tracks,
When she bats her eyes, innocent as the sparse dove.



They stroke her shuttlecock volva, sun-warmed and kept neat,
Her false cups and saucers, entice them further,
Her heavy bonnet on display, she smiles so sweet,
For she knows it makes the sale worthier.



They fondle her prized striped engina, and meet
Her Lazarus jewel box which is tempting and open,
They greedily handle her unequal bittersweet,
No piece of hers is off limits to them.



After a day at the sea, peddling pleasures,
For a dollar or two, in exchange for herself
What eventually becomes of her priceless treasures?
Forgotten trinkets on some sun-seeker's shelf.



-Laura Freeman -

April 19, 2014


The prompt for today is a bit of a spoiler, so I decided to post it after the poem.  This one was fun to write!  Much more fun that my usual Saturday laundry regimen... :)

And now for today’s (optional) prmpt. This is a bit silly, but it’s Saturday. I recently got a large illustrated guide to sea shells. There are some pretty wild names for sea shells. Today I challenge you to take a look at the list of actual sea shell names below, and to use one or more of them to write a poem. You poem doesn’t have to be about sea shells at all — just inspired by one or more of the names.
Peruvian Hat
Snout Otter Clam
Strawberry Top
Incised Moon
Sparse Dove
False Cup-and-Saucer
Leather Donax
Shuttlecock Volva
Striped Engina
Tricolor Niso
Triangular Nutmeg
Shoulderblade Sea Cat
Woody Canoebubble
Ghastly Miter
Heavy Bonnet
Tuberculate Emarginula
Lazarus Jewel Box
Unequal Bittersweet
Atlantic Turkey Wing
Happy writing!

Friday, April 18, 2014

A Ruba'i

"And now for our prompt (optional, as always). Today I challenge you to write a ruba’i. What’s that? Well, it’s a Persian form — multiple stanzas in the ruba’i form are a rubaiyat, as in The Rubaiyat of Omar Khayyam. Basically, a ruba’i is a four-line stanza, with a rhyme scheme of AABA. Robert Frost’s famous poem Stopping By Woods on a Snowy Evening uses this rhyme scheme. You can write a poem composed of one ruba’i, or try your hand at more, for a rubaiyat. Happy writing!"

[Although one could argue this is also almost a limerick, here is my attempt to write a ruba'i stanza]


Good Friday

Why do they call it Good Friday today?
My curious children want me to say,
So I tell them why, today Jesus died,
Instead, they decide to call it Bad Friday.

-Laura Freeman-
April 18, 2014

Thursday, April 17, 2014

Lights out - some Senryus

a quiet humming
bisects the silence rudely
the computer sings

whispers down the hall
interrupt concentration
children still awake

the fridge murmurs
steadily it's icy tune
the kitchen buzzes

a cough, a hush
the artificial silence
disturbing the peace

she craves the quiet
but gets instead night time noise
the house is alive

-Laura Freeman-
April 17, 2014

Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Mommy Lies

"And now for today’s prompt (optional, as always). After yesterday’s form-based prompt, today’s will hopefully be somewhat easier to get into. This prompt is from Daisy Fried, and the basic idea is to write a ten-line poem in which each line is a lie. "

Mommy Lies

Yes, that tutu looks good atop your pants,
Yes, I would like to see your made-up dance,

I like the lovely mug you made with clay,
I'll take it to work and use it every day,

I'm not annoyed,, that stain will wash right out,
It barely shows, I didn't mean to shout,

Yes, I would love to read that book once more,
And play with your toys for hours on the floor

Yes, of course Santa brought you that teddy bear,
Yes, he also brought the socks and underwear!

It isn't gross, it's special, just try it please,
It's orange and white because it's giraffe cheese,

The tooth fairy didn't forget to come last night,
She couldn't break a twenty, give it up, alright?

Don't sit so close to the t.v. or you'll go blind,
Too many video games will rot your growing mind,

I don't know how that baby got in my tummy,
She just decided that I would be her Mommy,

You ask so many questions, and that's not bad,
But Mommy doesn't know, so please go ask your Dad!

-Laura Freeman-
April 16, 2014

Tuesday, April 15, 2014

Terza Rima

Four Reasons to Brag - a Terza Rima poem

Our oldest son is sensitive and bright,
With a sense of humour that makes me grin,
Creative, loyal, and gaining in height.

Our second son has a spark from within,
He's ever trusting, though stubborn a bit,
Poky in the mornings, but genuine.

My third, sweet and loving, a kind spirit,
Chatty, we have quite the conversations,
Feminine, charming, yet wild, I'll admit.

 Then there's our baby, full of elation,
An explorer, a climber, half monkey,
Keeps us going until day's cessation.

Our children  make us a great family!

- Laura Freeman -
April 15, 2014





Monday, April 14, 2014

An Acrostic Poem

The Road Trip

Racing the clock in the morning,
Organizing them to get out the gate,
Actively bribing and warning,
Don't turn on the t.v., we'll be late!

The highway, it stretches ahead,
Rocky and dusty, but dry and bare,
I reach back, hand out snacks, keep them fed,
Pass back toys, trade books, make them share.

When will we get there? It's cacophony,
I'm bored. How much further? Not much more!
That one's thirsty; That one's hungry; She's looking at me!
Have to go to pee! ... but I didn't have to before!

Feet down, keep them off of my stuff!
Or, mister, you can get out and walk!
Unfortunately, he sees through my bluff,
Really? I can? Nah, Mom's all talk.

Keep quiet, the baby just started to nap,
I feel sick, hurry, pass me the bucket!
Didn't make it, oops, I threw up in my lap.
So... road trip next weekend? Nah, F---orget it!

-Laura Freeman-

April 14, 2014

Sunday, April 13, 2014

A Triolet

Not a Sonnet

I tried to write a sonnet today,
Shakespeare was famous for this brand of rhyme,
I have three solid starts I've cast away, 
I tried to write a sonnet today,
It's getting hard to think of things to say, 
Not to mention how this consumes my time,
I tried to write a sonnet today,
Shakespeare was famous for this brand of rhyme.


-Laura Freeman-
April 13, 2014

Saturday, April 12, 2014

Cinquains!

Just had a great day!  Mom and Dad came for a visit.  We haven't seen them since sometime in February.  A couple weekends were too wintery to drive and then the plague wiped out my children for a couple of weeks.  Now spring is in the air and everyone is feeling great, so it was time for a long overdue visit.

They arrived quite early while we were still doing our 'race around madly and tidy to trick them into thinking we're not slobs' Saturday morning routine (did you know that according to the old party game 'slangteasers' the actual word for that is "scurryfung").  Then Mom, Kirstin and I drove up to Fort St. James to go to a Miche handbag party.  It was awesome! I spent too much money on purses.  Gotta love purses!  Then we drove home via the swans in the farm field and stopped to take a few photos.  Then we all spent the afternoon outside assembling the kids' Christmas gift, a trampoline!  Mom made a delicious dinner and then it was back outside to finish the trampoline before it was too dark.  Then tucking my tired bounced out, fresh air-faced children in, saying farewell to my parents and here it is 11pm and I haven't even thought about my poem for the day.

So... in an effort to be brief, here is a "Cinquain", one of my least favourite poems, next to 'free verse'.  So easy I must be cheating!!!

I'll try harder tomorrow! :)

Late
The hour
Just sat down
No time to write
Cinquains!

Eleven
Good poems
Too tired tonight,
Time for a dud
Cinquains!

Rhymes
Are overrated
These are easier
Poems can be quick
Cinquains!


-Laura Freeman-
-April 12, 2014-

Friday, April 11, 2014

A Tanka

"The Japanese tanka is a thirty-one-syllable poem, traditionally written in a single unbroken line. A form of waka, Japanese song or verse, tanka translates as "short song," and is better known in its five-line, 5/7/5/7/7 syllable count form.  One of the oldest Japanese forms, tanka originated in the seventh century, and quickly became the preferred verse form not only in the Japanese Imperial Court, where nobles competed in tanka contests, but for women and men engaged in courtship. Tanka’s economy and suitability for emotional expression made it ideal for intimate communication; lovers would often, after an evening spent together (often clandestinely), dash off a tanka to give to the other the next morning as a gift of gratitude.  In many ways, the tanka resembles the sonnet, certainly in terms of treatment of subject. Like the sonnet, the tanka employs a turn, known as a pivotal image, which marks the transition from the examination of an image to the examination of the personal response. This turn is located within the third line, connecting the kami-no-ku, or upper poem, with the shimo-no-ku, or lower poem." 

Friday 

A rhythmic ticking
Paints melodies in my head
Marking time’s passage
The weekend draws ever near
Is it only twelve o’clock?

-Laura Freeman-
April 11,2014