Monday, September 26, 2016

A Selection of Enchanted Objects and Their Uses - List One







  • An enchanted apple picker that only picks ripe apples. Fully automatic, lounge in the shade and let it run. Sold separately: instant cider press and collection system. See also: Enchant-an-Apple, apple picker that only picks poisonous, golden, silver, and/or enchanted apples, for all your nefarious purposes. 

  • Enchanted frying pan, guaranteed to hit your enemies every time - also to never burn the pancakes.

  • Enchanted mason jars, sold in lots of one dozen. Excellent for canning - seals every time.

  • Glass vase, keeps flowers fresh for weeks. Never runs out of water.

  • Enchanted baby mobile, hang over the princess's cradle and it wards off old witches who sneak in in the middle of the night to steal the little darling.  

  • Enchanted paring knife. Never slips. Also see enchanted vegetable peeler.

  • Gardening gloves, enchanted to judge soil deficiencies for the plants growing in each plot.

  •  Enchanted pot holder that removes pans from the oven by itself, no hands required.

  • Dish cloth, specifically enchanted to remove all kinds of grime and grease.

  • Coffee Mug. Never have a forgotten drink go cold again! See also - ice glasses for summertime use. 

  • Enchanted Glasses Frames. Never forget your glasses on top of your head again, they place themselves on your nose at your request.


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Monday, September 19, 2016

Woman






Woman
Annie Louise Twitchell

She is an oak tree,
standing firm when others
are tossed in the storms.

She is a thunderstorm,
sharp and biting when she needs,
but bringing a rainbow after.

She is the summer night sky,
deep and velvet and unfathomable
but brilliant with starlight.

Most important,
she
is.




Oak trees are a very particular sort of beastie. Oak trees have a tap root - a long, thick, central root that goes quite deep. This anchors them down. I don't know how it continues to develop as the tree matures, but when I was little and weeding oak sprouts out of my flower bed (thank you ever so much, Jeremiah Gray Squirrel), the bottom part of the oak sprout, the tap root, was as long or longer than the top part with leaves and bark and stuff. It was so fascinating!




(Quick note, I've started a Facebook page, so go check that out: facebook.com/AnnieLouiseTwitchell)


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell

Sunday, September 11, 2016

9/11 - We Remember




And Daddy
Annie Louise Twitchell

They say he's a hero now but
they don't understand that he
was always a hero to me. All
I know is that my daddy's gone
and he's not ever coming home
and Mommy cries herself to
sleep each night -she got rid of
their big bed and has a little one
like me now so she doesn't have
an empty space where he ought to be.
And our dog waits at the door
every morning for a walk and
he never gets it and he gives up
after a while and lies down
under the kitchen table and licks
my bare feet when I sit down to
eat my breakfast.
I miss my daddy's morning kisses,
three of them all lined up in a row,
as he gets me apple juice in
my pink cup with black stripes
– a pink zebra.
I miss running with him and
pretending to get tired and
getting him to carry me all
the way home on his shoulders.
I miss stopping for ice cream
every Saturday on the way home
from the dump and I miss soap wars
while he and Mommy do the dishes
and I miss Mommy laughing.
She doesn't laugh anymore, and I wish she could.

There's so many 'ands' now
but there's one that's missing:
me and Mommy
and Daddy.



Today marks the fifteenth anniversary since 9/11. I had this poem show up in my head a few days ago and it dawned on me yesterday that it would be rather appropriate for today. 

We remember. This poem is for the men and women who lost their lives fifteen years ago today, and especially for the ones who lost their lives to try and save others. Those people who died, not just in the immediate attack but in the aftermath and rescue, they weren't just names and numbers, they were people like those I live every day of my life around. They had lives and families and children and parents and spouses. And those were left to try and carry on as best as one can after such a loss. 

They each had a story to tell and we don't necessarily know much about it except the ending. And for that ending, for what they did in service to other people just like them and just like you and me, I'll always be grateful. We need heroes. And we need to not forget that heroes aren't always the ones we hear about, the big names and the great heroic acts, but that heroes are often the guy next door, the woman down the street, the police officer on the side of the road. 


Copyright 2016 by Annie Louise Twitchell
Image credits to original artists

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Book Review: Of The Persecuted




Of The Persecuted by Angie Brashear is a Christian YA Fantasy novel, the first in her series, Legends Of The Woodlands.

Let me start out by saying that I tend to be pretty skeptical about Christian Fantasy, having seen it done very badly a number of times. But I found myself interested in reading and reviewing these, so here we go.





I gave it five out of five stars on Amazon. Here's my Amazon review:

As Christian fantasy goes, this was a very good read. I really enjoyed it. Some of the concepts Angie has explored in here are very similar to things I have learned in my own walk of faith. I didn't feel that the worldview was overbearing or stifling as it so often is in Christian literature. She presented the story as a story, with an interesting twist that tied it to real life in a way that I found quite clever and enjoyable. It didn't feel like she was forcing a fantasy world to act on the exact same rules and principles that ours does, something that I have been irritated with other authors for. But the basics of life are there: people are messed up and they need help from the One who made us.

The romance was a little odd at first. Laila was immediately head over heels enraptured with Lars. Right from the first few pages. It seemed a bit forced and awkward, until the concept of a one true match was introduced, and then looking back it made sense.

All in all, I enjoyed it and would recommend it to someone looking for this genre. Do be warned, however, that unlike Narnia and The Hobbit, this is a violent and at times slightly disturbingly gruesome book. This isn't a problem, because life is violent and disturbing, but I would recommend saving it for high school and beyond readers.


If you're looking for a Christian Fantasy read, I would probably recommend this one to you. It isn't heavy and overbearing like some I've read, and it isn't sticky sweet and all-is-well despite the fire breathing dragon about to kill us all, like others. It had me turning pages to see what happened next. 



Well, I was turning pages except for when I wasn't allowed to.



It's messy. It's brutal. It's hard and painful and yes, somewhat gruesome and nasty.

But so is life. Life is messy and brutal and hard and painful and yes, sometimes gruesome and nasty. So I think there is a lot of value in presenting it. My personal suggestion would be 15-16 year olds and up. On the reading list for my brothers for school work, I would place this one after The Lord of The Rings - that means, they don't get to read this one until they've read The Lord of The Rings. 


Photos by Annie Louise Twitchell