Saturday, May 17, 2008

Speaking of Presents...

Before the week is out, I thought I would share with you some special gifts I received this week. Both are creative yet different.

The first gift was my Mother's Day gift and I must warn you... no one I've shown it to has "gotten" it. I LOVE IT!!! It's not a sweater, a new dress, a family photo, new perfume, or spa date. Nope. It is a completely impractical and quirky piece of art. My family and I recently roamed an art festival where the artist responsible for my gift was featured. I was immediately drawn to his booth because of the whimsical items he created out of nothing more than wood, appliances and other random items. Richard and I pined and poured over the selection, debating whether or not we should splurge on one of his pieces for our study. There was one in particular piece incorporating a globe, but made to look like a hot air balloon. That was the one I wanted! Perfect for the study. As Murphy's Law would have it... after an hour of roaming the show and debating back and forth, Richard and I headed back to his booth, prepared to take the plunge, only to find out he just sold the very one on which I had my mind set. You can imagine my excitement when my thoughtful and loving husband presented me with a second rendition created by the artist just for me. If you like it, great. I'll share the artist's name. If you don't, join the ranks.

The second thoughtful gift I received this week was presented to me by Heather (who was a colleague of mine when I lived in Kentucky). Heather knew that each fall I would have my class of first year students submit a weekly index card to me. On the card, the students were to record three things... you got it... their HIGH, LOW, and AHA for the week (see April 28). Many students continued submitting their highs, lows, and ahas through the spring semester and one student in particular CONTINUES (four years later) sharing her weekly highs, lows, and ahas. So, imagine my surprise and pleasure when Heather presented me with a series of index cards, completed by seniors on graduation day! That's right. Heather had the students... in their caps and gowns... complete ONE more index card for old time sake. The cards tell of the students high, low, and aha after four years of college. It brought my experience at Bellarmine University full circle and maybe it even did the same for the students.


This week starts Taste of USA: What's Your State Made Of. For those of you new to the site or too busy to keep track of all we have going on... Taste of USA is a competition between states. The purpose... tout the fun, unique, and noteworthy things about your state with the hopes of luring me there for a fun-filled day of brainstorming and creativity. That's right. I will fly to the winning state sometime in either late August or early September to meet with readers and to develop the direction and fresh content for the second half of our year. The day is sure to be chock full of surprises and fun. Cheryl will be our "tour guide" for this whirlwind tour and CSPgradstudent will be our "Bean Counter," reporting on state standings. Rules will be posted later today, in the section on the front page labeled, "Taste of USA." Check it out, since we have no time to waste. The first five states begin participating this week. They are: Alabama, New Mexico, Texas, District of Columbia, Massachusetts, and Hawaii (go Hawaii. I'm rooting for you :)).

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