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Thursday, November 29, 2007

in this time of religious...

in this time of religious holiday sentiment it is easy to forget about the people outside of our own little world.

in this time of religious holiday revelry, it is easy to forget about the things in our lives that matter outside of the festivities.

in this time of religious holiday happenings it is easy to forget that there are others out there maybe less fortunate than ourselves in one of many ways.

in this religious holiday season, whether you celebrate Christmas, Hanukkah, or Quanza you can never forget what those days represent.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

How we are with our spirits

How we are with our spirits

How we are with our spirits we soar way up high, as high as the eagles glide

How we are with our spirits we can run with the wolves

How we are with our spirits we can out fox, the fox

How we are with our spirits we can show the raven the same intuitive stare that it has that shows that we are figuring things out as well

How we are with our spirits we can take on the boldest of the bullying blue jays

How we are with our spirits we can make the grizzly bear our brother

How we are with our spirits we can be as strong as the mighty oak and the hearty maple or
As wondrously beautiful as the paper birch and the weeping willow

How we are with our spirits we can be as focused as the salmon swimming up against the river

How we are with our spirits our touch can be as soft and gentle as the late spring breeze or as fiercely powerful as the mighty river during the early spring thaw

How we are with our spirits we can get the ever careful deer to lay down beside us in friendship

How we are with our spirits we can get the chipmunk to trust us enough to sit in our hand or to get the squirrel to be friendly enough to eat out of the same hand

How we are with our spirits we can hear the voices of experience talking to us in the wind

How we are with our spirits we can hear the trees talking to us as if we are brothers
Holding a grand conversation together

How we are with our spirits we find that the ground leads us to where we
Need to be just when we are needed there

How we are with our spirits we will find ourselves, find out who we are and find
Our destiny when we are ready or when we need to know

Thursday, November 15, 2007

Memories

a single moment can create a that can be so good that
you cannot help but reminisce years later or wish that, that
moment never happened
a memory can be a great source of comfort in a time of need
or it can be a great source of pain when things are at their worst
a memory can give you solice in knowing that you helped
someone out in a time of need
a memory can be something that can drive you to be your
best when no one expects you to be there
a memory can push people away or draw them in when
you share it with them
a memory when shared can be a source of strength
to others that need a moral boost
in the end our memories are the stories of our lives that
make us who we are and enrich our lives

Hearts and minds

Hearts and minds

As we go about our daily lives, why is it the we close our minds and never open our hearts when
We see families on the street

As we go about our daily routine why is it that we turn a blind eye to the people on the street
Selling drugs, selling them to our children

How is it that we allowed money to be our incentive for everything we do now

How will I know that someone will be there for me when no one is willing to open up, will you be there for me, can you be there for me when I open my mind and my heart to the families on
The street

Will you be there to stand by me when no one else will be there in my time of need

When will we open up our minds to new and better things and how do we open our hearts
Without getting hurt

When will we learn that money isn’t the answer for everything we do

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Taking a Stand

Taking a Stand

As each day goes by, you see and hear stuff that makes you feel like
All you can do is sit by watching it all happen

As the plight of others gets worse you start wondering to yourself is this what
My life is for and asking why the world has to be the way it is

When the turmoil appears to be at its worst, you wonder if your life was meant to be
Wasted in a world full of pain and sorrow

As the outlook looks bleak and no one appears to be doing anything at all you start
Feeling as if you can no longer just sit around anymore forcing you to stand up and fight

You see others who feel the same way then you notice that for many of those you see, your
Actions are a rallying call in coming out and saying we’re not going to take it anymore

As each person stand up to fight it says in a unifying voice that we cannot go quietly into the night
Forcing the shake up of the status quo while showing others that there is something better, something far better then what they have been shown that life should be or needs to be
Which gives you the diligence to do more and do your best

Saturday, November 10, 2007

Daphne's trip to Castle Island (pages 9 - 11 final 3 pages) childrens story





While trying to chew her stuffed mouth she could see her best friend an her mom trying to look for Daphne and her mom tried to get their attention by waving and jumping up and down hoping that they would see her but she ended having to swallow what she had in her mouth which made her mouth throat hurt but she then ran up to her best friend almost tackling her. She then led them to where they were sitting talking up a storm to the point that they could not make any sense of what Daphne was saying.

When they got to where Daphne’s mom was sitting, both Daphne’s mom and her best friends mom started to catch up on a few things while the girls ate while they trying to play with each other. After they were done eating the girls went down the ramp to the small section of beach to play on the sand and in the water. Since there was only one way on and off of the beach and it a small section of beach with a retaining wall on two of the tree sides both of their moms didn’t have to worry too much as they watched them play. After a little while, their moms called them back up off of the beach and Daphne’s mom asked “her if she wanted to go around the castle one last time to spend a little time with her friend”.

Daphne replied by asking “just one more time” in way that suggested that it was a stupid question and then ran up the ramp with her best friend. With that they went towards the playground so that the girls could play in it for a little while and as they walked towards the playground Daphne and her best friend was playing with each other on the bottom of the grassy hill that the castle sat on top of and running circles around the trees taking turns trying to catch each other. When they came around the bend in the sidewalk which went around the hill the playground came into view and the girls made a break for it grabbing the only two swings that were available.

The whole time they were on the swings they were giggling and trying to twist the swings to hit each other while swinging until one of them fell off, and then they cracked up laughing and ran off to play on the jungle gym part of the playground. As the got to the ladder to climb up to the top of the jungle gym like the other kids there they were in a hurry to get up on the ladder and after they got up there they started running back and forth on the various pieces linking the pieces of the jungle gym. As other kids walked away from different activities on the jungle gym they went and played imaginary games with each thing with their favorite being the tic-tac-toe activity.

As they got bored with those activities, they noticed that instead of the normal poles between the bars to go back and forth there were handles that dangled and also a handle that let you slide across between the two segments of the jungle gym and tried to climb across on the dangling handles and played with the sliding handle trying to see who could send it back to the other one fastest even if they had to push someone that wanted to go across. After about an hour they had their fill of the jungle gym and went to rest for a few minutes on the little wall that made up the boundary for the playground.

After a few minutes they started playing on and around the wall which got old real quick which both of their moms noticed and got them moving again and while they were moving along they seen people walking their dogs, stopping to pat the ones the were friendly and getting lots of kisses from the overly friendly ones which were the really hyper ones. They ended up running back and forth between their moms and the furthest tree for which their moms could still see them. They ended up seeing a barbeque pit and started running after each other around it and as the got close to catching each other they would turn away from the barbeque pit instead of going around it.

After a few minutes their moms moved them along and they started walking and playing with each other as little girls did when they were walking with each other when there was nothing they could do but walk. As they were following their moms the came upon a bust of a firefighter for which they both asked “why is this here” for which they were told “it’s a statue to remember some firefighters that dies while fighting a fire” for which all either one of them could say was “wow” and then they started walking again.

As they moved along they made their way up to the leading edge of the retaining wall which also had a decorative fence that was pretty much two decorative poles between two decorative posts along the top of the retaining wall. They ended standing there for a few minutes commenting on the different boats and ships that passed by, they even seen some sailboats with some of them being rather large. As they commented on the boats especially the larger sailboats the mother of Daphne’s best friend pointed to a specific sailboat and said that, “that boat is called a tall ship and goes around the world training people how to sail and to be paraded in the waterways”.

They all stood there watching the tall ship pass by and after it so far passed them Daphne’s mom said “ok, lets go” so they started up again. The girls started walking but lagged behind because they wanted to continue watching the boats and were hurried along by their moms. They then started running to catch up and ended up tripping themselves up causing their moms to stop and wait for them. After they got up and brushed themselves off they were a little subdued from being embarrassed from falling and just walked holding their moms hands for a couple minutes.

Shortly after that they came upon another statue and Daphne asked “why does that one look like a soldier?” for which her mom said “it is a soldier, it is a statue remembering people who came from this area that died in the Korean War.” They stopped in front of the statue just long enough for her mom to say that and then kept walking and after a minute or two the girls got a second wind and started sticking their tongues out at each other and acting as if they didn’t see each other doing it and then took off running again. This time they ran up the hill and decided to race each other by rolling down the hill a couple times as their moms watched as they continued walking.

As they came around the bend Daphne’s best friends older brother came out of the back of Sullivan’s and just caught sight of his and Daphne’s mom and waited there for them, while looking for the girls which he did. He was watching to see if they had noticed him and after he realized that he hadn’t been noticed by the girls he went and hid behind the dumpster by the back door making sure that he could still see them so he would know when to jump out. After they got a little past him he came out and motioned to their moms to keep quiet which let them know that he was going to scare them.

He then snuck up behind them and scared them by getting down to their level, walking up behind them quietly and said “boo”, they jumped and screamed causing him to fall to the ground with laughter, their moms even had a good laugh at how much they jumped and screamed. The girls ended getting a little mad at him and going over to him and kicking him saying “that wasn’t nice” as he was laughing he tried to say “but it was worth it” but could not get the words out because he was laughing too hard. After he was done laughing, he got up and said hold on let me get my backpack.

After he got his backpack, they started walking along the parking lot in front while the girls told him about what they had been doing. They followed the parking lot away from the castle making their way towards the car that Daphne’s best friend and her mom came in which was down the street about halfway between the parking lot they were at and the one the Daphne and her mom parked in. when they came up on the car which was across the street, Daphne asked “how are you going to cross here with all that traffic” for which her best friends older brother said “don’t worry about it” as their moms said their good byes and then the girls did that.

After that Daphne and he mom continued walking and Daphne said “this is a big beach” for which her mom said “this isn’t big, I have seen much, much bigger.” While they were walking Daphne started showing that she was tired and with in a couple minutes started lagging behind the way little girls do causing her mom to pick her up. By the time they got to their car Daphne was fast asleep causing her mom to gently put her in the back seat of the vehicle. After putting Daphne in the back seat her mom just sat there in the front seat for a few minutes to relax while listening to the radio before driving home.

A little under halfway home Daphne woke up and was surprised to see that they were in the car driving home and asking in a voice that showed that she was still half asleep along with a little whiney “where are we going?” with that her mom said “well, look who woke up” and then let her know that they were on their way home, then proceeded to ask “are you thirsty, we can stop somewhere if you are?” for which Daphne replied “I am hungry” for which her mom said “ok, we will stop at the when get to the next rest stop” after a few minutes they came to a rest stop that had a fast food place and went stopped there to get something quick.

Instead of going through the drive thru Daphne’s mom decided to go right into the place to allow them to stretch their legs. As they waited in line Daphne’s mom was trying to get her to decide what she wanted for which she was taking her time because she just wanted to look around the restaurant. By the time they got the cashier, Daphne’s mom had taken it upon herself to order for her and decided to order a kids meal for her which would also give her a little toy to play with. After they got their food, Daphne’s mom asked “do you want to eat here or in the car?” for which Daphne said “in the car” then immediately started picking at her French Fries as they walked back to the car.

After settling back into their seats the were off again while Daphne ate her food so fast that you would have thought she hadn’t eaten all day, while her mom was picking at hers while driving and trying to tell Daphne not to eat so fast or to put so much into her mouth. After Daphne finished her food she realized that she had forgotten to check to see what her toy was which ended up being a little figurine from the newest animated movie out and had wanted to see. Daphne’s mom was happy that she was playing with the figurine since she was lost in her own little world using her imagination to have it interact with imaginary characters and with other toys which lasted for the rest of the trip home.

As they got home, Daphne could see that her best friend was already home because she could see he best friend playing outside in her yard as her best friends brother was getting the last of the stuff that her best friend and her mom had brought to Castle Island to entertain themselves while waiting for her best friends brother. Daphne started getting excited to the point that she was squirming in her seat and realizing this, her mom said after you get changed you can go play if you want. As they pulled into their driveway Daphne’s best friend seen them and rushed over to meet them and to ask if Daphne could come out and play since they were next door neighbors for which Daphne’s mom said she just has to get changed before going over there.

With that Daphne hurried her mom up to the front door to unlock it and after her mom opened the door she ran upstairs to change, changing in a hurry so she could go play with her best friend and let her know about her day before they ran into each other at Castle Island. As Daphne’s mom was bringing in the last of the stuff that she had brought but never used, she was almost knocked over by Daphne as she ran out of the house over to her best friend and immediately started talking about her day.

Daphne’s mom finishing up with bringing the stuff into the house sat down in her favorite chair looking out the window watching Daphne and her best friend thinking to herself thankfully the day is over and hoping that Daphne will be to bed early from having a full day of activities at Castle Island.

Daphne's trip to Castle Island (pages 7 & 8 ) children's story



As the group of people walked back to the entrance through the courtyard, Daphne and a few others looked around in awe and taking it all in before the went back through the two sets of double doors that were two to three stories high that made up the front entrance. As they walked out Daphne’s mom said “let’s go this way” and directed her to the left and started walking around the fort and down the hill towards the harbor side of the beach which also had a fishing pier on it. As they get close to the fishing pier she can see that people were actually fishing and starts running the rest of the way to the fishing pier.

While Daphne ran her mom said “don’t run to far” then she stopped over my the monument right across from the fishing pier and started looking at the depictions on the monument while fidgeting about while waiting for her mom. When she got there she called out to Daphne for which she responded “it’s about time you caught up” for which Daphne’s mom just stuck out her tongue, then they walked out onto the fishing pier and Daphne was amazed at how close the boats and ships were to the pier and how big they were.

They walk out onto the fishing pier which was named for a firefighter who had died in the line of duty. When they got to the first person who was fishing Daphne asked “have you caught anything yet?” for which the guy replied “just a few crabs that ate my bait”. Then she went up to the next guy asked the same question but this time the guy said “open up my cooler and you can see but just don’t touch” Daphne then opened up the cooler and seen a couple small fish and asked “are those real fish” for which the guy said “yep they are, one of them is what I am using for bait and the other is a fish I caught using a sea worm and if you want to look at some open that little box inside my cooler”.

Daphne opened up the box and seen the worms and said “ewe those can’t be worms they are too ugly” for which her mom said “they really are worms” and then asked the guy if she could pick one up to show her. Daphne’s mom then picked one up and showed her the worm and said “they even have small teeth that are really sharp” then she forced the worm to open up its mouth. Daphne then said “gross I don’t like those worms” and then shuttered from getting the chills then she ran down to the end of the fishing pier because she seen someone fighting with their fishing rod and wanted to see the fish as it came up.

After a few minutes of just staring down at the water waiting for the fish to come up she seen the silhouette of the fish and it was fighting to free itself from the fishing hook and the guy. As the fish got closer to the surface she could see it was a big fish. After the guy had gotten it up to the fishing pier Daphne asked “what type of fish is it” and he said “this is a blue fish and don’t really know why they call it a blue fish”. Then she watched the fish flop around the fishing pier as the guy took the hook out of the fish’s mouth and asked “what’s going to happen to it?” for which the guy just looked at her and then at her mom.

Daphne’s mom getting the hint asked “are you ready for lunch?” for which Daphne replied “mommy no because I don’t want to leave the beach” then her mom replied back “we don’t have to there is a place just out of sight called Sullivan’s but everyone just calls it Sully’s and they have cheeseburgers, hot dogs, French fries and even your favorite ice scream” for which she replied “ok” and then started walking almost skipping along as she went. As they walked along towards Sullivan’s Daphne asked “how come you didn’t bring me here before” for which her mom said “I waited until I knew that you would like coming here.”

As they turned the bend, Sullivan’s came into view and Daphne’s mom pointed it out saying “there it is” for which Daphne said “cool”. As they got to the front of Sullivan’s Daphne said “wow, that’s an awfully big line” for which her mom said “during the summer there is always a long line like this as long as it ain’t raining”. As they made their way through the sea of people trying to find the end of the line Daphne was amazed by all of the people there trying to get into the small take out restaurant and every she seen another kid around her age she would try to run up to them and play but her mom would not allow it.

As they finally found the end of the line Daphne asked in a whiny tone “I’m hungry, how long will we have to wait here?” for which her mom replied “should only be a few minutes” with in a few minutes Daphne was fidgeting as they slowly made their way towards the front door of Sullivan’s with the line getting longer and longer behind them. With Daphne’s fidgeting causing her to bounce around and look all over the place she would occasionally look from one end of the line to the other in amazement especially with the endless stream of people coming out of the restaurant.

As they inched their way closer Daphne got more and more fidgety and by the time they got close to the doors of Sullivan’s, Daphne started playing on the large granite rectangular planters that were just high enough and deep enough for someone to sit on. She kept doing figure eights between one of the planters and one of the concrete supports, sometimes walking, sometimes skipping and sometimes running stopping just long enough to let someone by and to smell the flowers. After a few minutes Daphne’s mom told her “here we go come on” and Daphne ran up to her mom and started holding her moms hand still somewhat fidgeting.

As they entered Sullivan’s she looked around taking it all in as they slowly moved further into the restaurant. She started looking at the glass cabinets and the stuff inside of them while trying to ask her mom what each thing was for which some things she knew and some things she didn’t. as the made their way up to the front of the line to wait on the next register Daphne’s mom had to call her back into line one last time and said “you will know who is at our register” as the walked up to the cashier. When the walked up to the cashier Daphne having to stand on her tippy toes looked up over the counter and was surprised to see her best friends older brother there.

With a surprised look she jumped back and asked “what are doing here?” for which he replied “it’s my summer job and I get to come to the beach every day” with that said Daphne’s eyes widened up and she said “wow”. After that her best friends older brother chuckled and asked “do you want a hot dog or cheeseburger?” and she looked up at her mom and before she could ask her mom said” she’ll take both and make it two of each” and then he looked down and asked “do you want your strawberry ice cream in a cup or cone?”

Already knowing what she was going to say and then he said without her saying anything “a cup it is” and then asked “what size Pepsi do you want” for which Daphne’s mom said “a large for me and a medium for her”. Daphne’s mom then handed her the money and said you can give him the money, she then struggled to hand him the money so he reached over the counter so she could hand him the money, by this time a few of the customers with children and the other cashiers were chuckling a little bit. As Daphne and her mom walked over to the order pick up area they could hear the other cashiers teasing him a little bit.

After only about two or three minutes their order was up and Daphne and her mom grabbed their order and started walking out of Sullivan’s and ran into her best friend and her best friends mom who was just entering Sullivan’s. When Daphne realized who it was she was happily surprised to see her friend and almost dropped her lunch. As Daphne ran over to her friend she almost lost tripped out of giddiness and barely held onto her lunch, when she got to her friend she asked “when did you get here” for which her friend said we just got here and wanted to let my brother know we were here so he can come find us when he gets off work”.

As they started talking, Daphne’s mom said to her “let’s wait outside for them” and then told her friends mom we will be over by the ramp leading to the small section of beach by the parking lot” and then motioned Daphne outside and her friends mom nodded ok. As they walked out Daphne not wanting to leave started at first walking backwards towards the doors while watching her friend and her friends mom and bumping into a guy who then just looked down at her and said “hi little one” and then continued walking as Daphne turned and ran to catch up with her mom almost running into people crossing her path.

When they got to the ramp, Daphne’s mom said “put the food on here so you can eat” talking about the wooden guardrail that was on one side of the ramp. Daphne then put it down and showed that she was real giddy due to her best friend showing up there by pacing back and forth and getting really fidgety while waiting for her best friend while saying out loud to no one “what’s taking them so long?” and trying to look for her friend to come out of Sullivan’s while nibbling on her food. Her mom ended up telling her “hurry up and eat, your ice scream is melting” for which she replied by stuffing her mouth with the cheeseburger she had been nibbling on and having trouble chewing because of it.

Daphne's trip to Castle Island (pages 5& 6) chlidrens story



of the guy. He had seen Daphne jump and said “I didn’t mean to make you jump” then he walked over bent down and asked “would you like to see a magic trick?” and Daphne asked “your not going to do the quarter behind the ear trick are you” “I see you know your magic tricks so I can’t fool you with that one” he said then he said “nothing in my hands, and as you can see nothing up my sleeves where I have no sleeves on” then he reaches behind her with one hand and makes a couple motions with his other hand in front of her face.

Then after a few seconds he said “I believe this belongs to you” and pull from behind her back a large lollipop. Upon seeing the lollipop, her eyes bugged out and she asked “how did you do that?” “A good magician never reveals his secrets” he said. He then said “I bet I can guess your name” for which she said “how could you know my name” “Well I do, and it is Daphne, right?” he said and she looked stumped as to how he could know this and her mom said to her quietly “he use to work with me and he seen the pictures I have of you at work” with that Daphne’s mom asked “Mike how’s your new job going?” “well Sandy, you know how new jobs go” he said.”

With that he motioned the small group of people to a small room from which the tour would start from. After they were all seated, he went through the normal start of tour guidelines which were more of a quick talk about safety on the tour since sections of the building were unsuitable for more than a person or two at a time and that the sections are fences off for the public’s safety. While he was talking out that Daphne was looking around the room and slowly raised her hand to ask “are any of the things in here real?” and Mike said “some of the things are and please don’t touch anything some of it is really old and fragile”.

With that she followed her mom back out into the courtyard as the group started walking up a ramp that brings you up to the top of the fort. As the group follows the tour guide he pointed out the flags on the railing of the ramp noting the significance of specific flags while holding them out since there was no wind to speak of. He mentioned an American Flag in particular that can only be raised in a few places which happened to be only a handful of national historical sites and explained its history due to the amount of stars and how they were placed on the blue field.

As they walked up the ramp Daphne commented on how long and how high the ramp was which her mom said to her in return “that’s because we are going on top of the fort to see a few cannons” and Daphne replied back with “real cannons?” for which her mom said “possibly, you will have to see if he says they are”. As they got up to the top the tour guide pointed out a small cannon saying that “this type of cannon was used just to lob a cannonball to a nearby ship during a battle and that it was one of a couple cannons that were at the fort” he then pointed out the cannonball beside the cannon and dared the kids in the group to pick it up.

Daphne like any other little girl could not resist trying to picking up the cannonball. As the kids took turns trying to pick it up they did their best and even a few at a time tried to pick it up at the same time with no luck. After they had their fill of trying to pick it up the tour guide said “that it was a real cannonball and is the same type that were used in this cannon but the cannon itself was a replica”. As they started walking the tour guide mentioned “that the flags that you see here along the rooftop hanging on the railing are the flags of the state flags of each individual state, while as you can see the U.S. flag is on a pole.”

As they started to walk a little further Daphne walked up to the outer wall to get a better view of the area. When she got to the wall she had to stand on her tip toes to look and still had to have her mom pick her up. After Daphne’s mom picked her up she was amazed at the view from the top of the fort and all she could muster was a “wow that’s a long drop” with that Daphne’s mom put her down and hurried her up so they could catch up to the group. As they caught up they were directed by the tour guide to go down the steps and go through the small hallway and up the stairs at the other end of the hallway.

When they got to the other side of the hallway they were looking at a large cannon for which the tour guide said “that’s another replica of a cannon and as you can see it points out at the harbor and it is for ships that are a little further out” for which a member of the tour group asked “how far out are you talking” for which the tour guide said that “it can shoot a cannon right around the distance of that bridge way out there”. As the tour guide was explaining that Daphne was trying to look down the barrel of the cannon but could not jump high enough to see inside.

Daphne’s mom picked her up let her look and then said, “I think you would like the view over here better” then she turned to face the water and Daphne’s eyes lit up as she seen all of the different boats and ships in the harbor. Daphne then wiggled till her mom was forced to put her down then she ran to the outer wall was able to see a little bit of the harbor and all of the boats. As she looked around she paid no attention to the tour guides attempts to have them follow him and asked her mom “can we go down there after we get done here” for which her mom responded “sure we can, that was next on my list to take you anyway.”

As Daphne’s mom led her away from the view to catch up to the group, Daphne kept trying to look back and look. When they caught up the tour guide was in the middle of telling the group about their next stop on the tour which was a power magazine that stored the black powder for the cannons. One of the members of the tour asked “why is it that there is dirt all over the top roof?” for which the tour guide responded “it’s for hiding and protecting the powder magazines”. With that the tour guide directed them to the steps that led into the powder magazine and told the group to go all the way in.

The tour guide let them take it all in and said that “the reason that the are so many ninety degree turns was to eliminate the possibility of an accidental explosion from a stray spark when firing the guns and the cannons.” After a couple moments he said “when you’re done taking it in come out so we can get back to the tour” as the tour slowly filed out of the cramped hallway of a powder magazine, the tour guide directed them towards a set of stairs that led back down to the courtyard and told everyone “be careful due to the steepness of the steps” and then led them down to keep everyone from running down.

After they were all down he brought them into a doorway that opened up into a room larger than the average floor plan for a home. From there he moved on to the next room while explaining the different activities that were done in each room. While he was explaining all this there were a few people who had said that “they loved the open floor plan” and others that said that it was “a little on the cool side”. There was one person who actually asked “why is it the there are no hallways between rooms” and the tour guide said that “this is due to the need to be able to move quickly and easily between rooms when there is a battle going on”

As the came into one of the other rooms and before the tour guide could mention it, one of the people on the tour asked “why does it look like there is a blocked up doorway there” as the tour guide started talking about what had supposedly transpired to cause that doorway along with Edgar Allen Poe writing a famous story about it, Daphne started getting antsy and stopped paying attention that she almost wondered off into the next room. Just as Daphne decided to go into the next room the tour guide quietly came up behind her and said “boo” which caused her to jump and scream.

Daphne then said “don’t do that, you scared me” like little girls would say then the tour guide turned and motioned for the group to follow while Daphne walked into the room a little mad at the tour guide and pouting. When the group was all in the room someone yelled out “look pizza ovens” for which the tour guide said “nope this was the kitchen and these were to cook the food and a staple food was bread for them”.

Then the tour guide finished explaining what normally went on in the kitchen they moved on to one last room that had a few things in it with one of them being a mannequin dressed as a soldier with a musket from of the periods that the fort was active and in front of it was a model of Castle Island that included the break water that made up Pleasure Bay. After explaining a couple things the tour guide motioned to the doorway that led back into the courtyard and said “thank you for coming today and if come this way we can all head back to the entrance of the fort.”

Daphne's trip to Castle Island (pages 3 & 4) children's story



While they were walking, Daphne could not help but notice that there were lots of other people there some of them walking, some of them rollerblading and some on skateboards going up and down the asphalt. After a couple minutes of taking in all of the people Daphne realized that there were boats attached to moorings on one side of the breakwater and asked “why are there boats on one side and not the other side” for which her mom replied “because they don’t allow motor boats on in the bay that this breakwater makes and the name of the bay is Pleasure Bay” for which she asked “why do they call it Pleasure Bay?” for which her mom said “who knows” as she points out someone on a wind board in Pleasure Bay.

By the time they were done looking at the person wind-boarding they were at The Sugar Bowl and Daphne’s mom said “look, you can see the people fishing now” and Daphne looked over and seen what to her was a multitude of people fishing even though it was only a few people some with multiple rods of different sizes. She then started running between the people asking questions and seeing if they had any fish.

There were a couple that did have some fish and they humored her and allowed her to see the fish for which all she could say was “wow” and ask “what type of fishy is that” for which one said “this is a blue fish” and “this is only a small one” when the person said that her eyes bulged out in surprise, then she moved on to another and they said “this is a flounder and this is a sun fish”. After a little while of running between people her mom said its time to go to the building in the distance and as they left she seen someone with a drop line, pulling up their line and the person mumbling about something on the line for which she found to be a crab that was eating the persons bait.

When Daphne seen the crab clamped on the hook while trying to eat the person’s bait, she asked “ewe what is that?” for which the person said “it’s a crab and I he and his other crab friends keep eating my bait” Daphne was confused by him saying that he was using bait and asked “how come your not using those shiny pieces that the people back home use” for which the guy asked in return “I take it you live by a lake” and she replied “yes” and he said “those shiny things are for fish in a lake not for a fish in the ocean” and then Daphne goes running up to her mom asking “mommy I thought we were going to a beach not an ocean?” and her mom replied “honey, we are going to a beach and it is on the ocean besides we’re not that far from the beach you can see it from here.”

Daphne’s mom pointed to where they started and said “the beach goes from where we parked the car all the way over to that building” and Daphne said “wow that’s a beach, cool” after allowing Daphne to stare at the size of the beach which wasn’t the largest of beaches but bigger than Daphne had ever seen and looking at the skyscrapers in the background for a few minutes Daphne’s mom said as she started walking down the second half of the breakwater “time to go so you can have some fun over there at the beach, besides I think you will like what is over here”.

As Daphne’s mom starts walking Daphne hesitates while still looking over at the beach, then runs up to her mom and asked “what is it that I will like” and before Daphne’s mom could answer Daphne realized what her mom had meant and hears the running water out of the pleasure bay through the locks in the breakwater and runs up to them and said “wow, mommy come here and look, its amazing” with that Daphne’s mom gives a good laugh as she walks up to Daphne and went to speak but before she could say anything Daphne said “I’ve never seen a waterfall before mommy”

Daphne’s mom said “that isn’t a real waterfall, that’s a manmade one that is caused by the out going tide going through these locks”. For a good few minutes, Daphne was draped over the railing staring at the waterfall caused by the locks in the breakwater and without warning see something out of the corner of her eye plop into the water which turned out to be a person throwing a drop line from the waterline at the bottom of the breakwater right by the locks.

After running back and forth between both sides of the locks watching people with drop lines along the waterline she looked up and realized that they were close to where they were going and said “wow, is that where we are going?” Her mom say “yep, and we can actually go in it too.” As they started walking Daphne asked “what is this beach called?” for which her mom replied “Castle Island” and Daphne asked “why do they call it an island for” for which her mom said “that’s because it use to be a real island until they decided to build the area around it” and then Daphne asked “how did they do that?” and her mom said “with landfill, which was from a hill that they decided to flatten or to shrink”.

While walking Daphne’s mom could not help but laugh a little given the giddiness that Daphne had like girls her age have when they can’t wait to get there. When Daphne looked up and seen her mom laughing a little she asked “why are you laughing” for which her mom said “nothing” then Daphne ran in front of her mom turned to her and grabbed on of her moms hands with both of hers and said “hurry up” in a little bit of a whiney tone as if they could not get there fast enough. With that Daphne’s mom stopped and playfully said “no” and then pulled Daphne to the nearest bench and sat on it while Daphne still tried pulling while repeatedly saying “come on”.

As Daphne tried to get her mom to get back up and go right up to the building that was pointed out to her when they were still at the Sugar Bowl, her mom got up and started letting Daphne pull her along but also guiding Daphne towards something that was just out of Daphne’s sight due to facing her mom. When they got there the other kids playing caught her eye and she forgot all about the building that she was trying to get too. She let her moms hand go and looked around saying “wow, I didn’t know this place had a playground” and then asked “can I” before her mom could respond Daphne was already running for the swings.

As she got up to the swings she noticed that there were swings with different types of seats, some with the hard plastic seats and some with a rubber like seat and even some for little kids and babies. After swinging on each type of swing that she could go on she went onto the jungle gym part of the playground and had fun playing with the other kids while climbing latter walking across small bridges and going down the slides until her heart was content and worn out from all of the running around.

After collapsing onto the ground to rest for a little while, Daphne asked her mom “what is that building” for which her mom said “that is Fort Independence, which is really old and why they call this place Castle Island” with that Daphne sat up crossed her legs and said “wow, how old is it? Is it older than you and daddy?” and her mom said “it’s even older than Nana’s mommy” for which Daphne was too mesmerized, to respond with any questions. After a few minutes of Daphne just sitting there cross legged staring up at the building she asked “how come they call it a castle if it is someone’s fort?”

Daphne’s mom said “well that because when they had it built the only buildings that were this big at the time were castles so even though it is just a fort it was called a castle” with that Daphne said “wow” then got up and tried lifting her mom up by grabbing her hands and pulling her from her sitting position. With that her mom got up and said “ok we can go up there and go in it, but you have to beat me up the hill or we just walk around it” with that Daphne started running with her mom walking up letting her win and when she met up with Daphne she said “ok, you win let’s go”.

Daphne’s mom took her by the hand and walked through the first of two sets of two to three story doors. As they walked through them Daphne notices small slits in the walls and asked “what are they for” for which her mom replied “those were for people to put rifles through when people tried to attack the fort” and as they walked through the second set of doors it opened up to a large court yard with a couple people sitting at a collapsible banquet table just past the doors to the right and a small roped off waiting area to the left of the doors. Daphne’s mom walked up to the people and they asked her to sign the register, told her it was a free tour and that they could wait for the next tour which was in a couple minutes.
While they waited Daphne looked up in wonder and taking in the size of Fort Independence when the tour guide came to the small group that had gathered and said “hello, my name is Mike and I will be your tour guide today” with that Daphne jumped from being startled by the sudden voice

Daphne's trip to Castle Island (pages 1 & 2) childrens story



As Daphne plays with her dolls instead of finishing up getting dressed for a day at the beach, her mom yells up to her “Daphne, are you dressed yet?” after a few moments she hears some toys drop and some stomping of little feet letting her know that Daphne wasn’t anywhere near ready. Daphne’s mom hesitates for a few moments and starts walking up the stairs and hears little feet running for the stairs. Then a few seconds later Daphne almost runs her mom over running down the stairs because she couldn’t see her mom from around the bend in the stairs. When Daphne see’s her mom standing there on the stairs she stops short with a thud a few steps away from her and almost falling into her mom.

Daphne then looks up at her mom and says “all dressed” with a grin from ear to ear because she knows she is going to the beach. What Daphne didn’t know was that she wasn’t going to the beach she was use too, but rather a beach that her mom grew up going to. Daphne thinking that she was going to her normal beach, promptly stated, “I can’t wait to play with Becky and Andy and find all those cool things lying around the beach.” With that Daphne’s mom had to stop her before she said any more and had to disappoint her by telling her “honey, we are not going to our normal beach today.”

Daphne replied by pouting and said “I don’t want to go then”, and stomped over to the sofa and sat with a very big plop while crossing her arms and staring at her mom angrily which made her mom laugh making Daphne even madder. While trying to stop laughing, her mom tried to say “honey, when you are done pouting and ready to go, let me know” but could not say it with out laughing given Daphne’s expression. After a few minutes, she came back to see if Daphne was in a better mood, for which she was and as soon as she seen her mom she tried acting as if she was still mad at her.

Her mom stopping in front of where she had her keychain and said “I guess I am going to have to go all by myself” for which Daphne just said “humph” and turned away, then her mom said “well, I guess your going to miss out seeing all of those sail boats and the playground” for which Daphne replied “so what” then her mom turned to the table and grabbed her keys saying “that’s too bad, I guess that you don’t want to see the really large motor boats and all of the people fishing either.”

Daphne then trying to act like she was still mad but curious, asked “they got people fishing there” for which her mom replied “yep, and the fish can be this big” stretching her arms out as she replied. Then Daphne asked “how big are the boats” and her mom replied “well since you don’t want to go, I guess I won’t tell you anymore”. Daphne suddenly had a change of heart and got up, ran to her mom grabbing her hand and said “lets go” and her mom asked “does that mean you want to go now?” with Daphne pulling her mom by the hand with all of her might nodding yes the whole time with no luck, then she let go of her moms hand and got behind her and tried to push her.

Her mom then said “ok, ok let’s go” and then said “hurry up and get in the car before I change my mind” once said Daphne ran to the door, opened it in the process slamming the door against the wall beside the door almost breaking the etched stain glassed window that went the length of the door at the doorframe and then she ran as fast as she could to the car. As her mom closed the door to lock it, Daphne got really antsy and “yelled hurry up, I want to see the boats and see how big the fish really are.”

With that Daphne’s mom teased her and walked up slowly to the car to antagonize her and by the time her mom got to the car she was squirming and trying to open the locked car door. Daphne’s mom could have used her remote car alarm to unlock the door but decided to let Daphne squirm because to her it was funny seeing her daughter squirming in such a hurry to get in the car.

When Daphne’s mom finally got to the car, she was laughing at her daughter as she whined about how slow her mom was getting to the car. After they got in the car and started driving it was an endless barrage of questions from Daphne to her mom with the most frequent question being “are we there yet” which annoyed Daphne’s mom because it made a short trip feel like an eternity. After a little while Daphne’s mom said, “the beach we are going to is in the big city” for which Daphne responded “how can you have a beach in the big city?” and Daphne’s mom explained that “a big city can have a beach if they are near the coastline and would have a beach in the ocean instead of a lake and you’ve been to the big city the beach is in” for which Daphne asked “I have?” and then asked “which city?”

Daphne’s mom said “it is a city that you like and go to every summer to look at the swans and feed the ducks and geese”. “Mommy, that ain’t a beach that’s just a little pond for the birds and those funny looking boats with the swan on them” Daphne said looking perplexed as her mom said “Honey the beach is in a different part of the city”. “You will know when we are almost there” Daphne’s mom said as she honks her horn at someone that just cut her off. Daphne then asked “mommy how will I know” for which her mom replied, “you will see this small castle, and if the weather is good we can get there early enough we can even take a tour of it.” “The city has a castle on the beach and you never took me there, why?”

“Well honey I just did, but it’s not really a castle, it is actually a fort and because of its size and when it was built it was classified as a castle even though it’s not” said Daphne’s mom. As they drive along on the short distance on the highway, Daphne’s mom tries to distract her from her line of question first by trying to play the normal games they play on their short day trips when they do things when Daphne’s dad isn’t around because of his travels for work.

Unfortunately, the games didn’t work, then Daphne’s mom tried to talk to her about her friends Andy and Becky but quickly found that she wished she didn’t bring up the subject because now Daphne was talking about what she was going to tell them when she got home. Eventually, Daphne’s mom asked her to play her hand held video game or watch part of a movie so she can get some rest so she can take in all of the sights on Castle Island for which Daphne’s mom never told her the name of. At first Daphne had a hard time with it being the naturally inquisitive little girl she was but eventually settled into watching her favorite movie on the overhead DVD player.

After a little while as with any little girl, Daphne started squirming and wanting to ask more questions on the beach but a little whineier than before, and thankfully they weren’t far away and Daphne’s mom was able to divert her attention to the water on off to their right side that was coming into view. With that the only thing that Daphne could say “are we there yet” over and over every so often with it only ending when they pulled into the part of the street that was reserved for beach parking at the edge of the breakwater reserved for beach parking and her mom saying “we’re here, sort of”.

As Daphne’s mom got out of the vehicle Daphne asked “what do you mean sort of?” for which her mom replied “I’ll show you” as she was shooing Daphne out of the vehicle. After all of the stuff was out of the vehicle, Daphne’s mom said “see that building way over there on the other side of the water” for which Daphne replied “ya” as little girls say, “that is where we are going but we have to walk from here if you want to watch some people fishing” said her mom. After that she motioned for the asphalt that covered the top of the breakwater that went straight out into Boston Harbor.

As they started walking, Daphne asking questions starting with “where does this lead” for which her mom replied with “It leads to what is called The Sugar Bowl” for which Daphne responded back “why do they call it the sugar bowl?”, not knowing how to answer her mom just said that “I don’t know why they call it that, someone named it that before I even knew that it was there”. Then she asked “is there where they fish?” as little girls would say, for which her mom said “yep, but that’s not the only place they fish, they also do it on the far side of that building” for which Daphne replied back with “what type of fish do they catch there?” and her mom said “many different types”.

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Walking in the Cold Winter Wind

Walking in the Cold Winter Wind

In the pre-dawn hours as the cold winter wind blows at you with the fierceness
That feels like it goes right threw you as you are walking your morning walk, and it
Feels like you just can’t get warm

As you start to shiver all you want to do is go home and curl up into a ball with a comforter
All around you to keep warm inside but yet you keep walking

As you walk, you keep telling yourself I need to keep walking and you start walking faster
And faster until you’re almost jogging you then notice that even with the cold winter wind biting
At you, you start warming up enough not to be intimidated by that wind

While you are walking you realize that the wind is driving you to keep warm makes you even
More determined to walk that much faster and as you realize this you are surprised by
The fact that you never even noticed that you are where you wanted to be and the walk is
Now a memory

Thursday, November 1, 2007

finding the strength

Finding the Strength

As you sit there and the realization sets in you wonder what, am I to do know
Do I give up and let it take me or do I stand there and fight

You then ask yourself how do, I muster the strength needed to tell my family and the strength
To put on the bravest of faces for those who matter most

As you sit there struggling to find the words and muster the strength you realize that the strength
Comes from deep inside of you, a place that says I must be strong, strong for those who need
Me the most for they are the ones who have the unwavering faith in my ability to be there
For them

As time goes by and it feels like it is at its worst, with your strength starting to wane you notice
That those who needed you the most are now the ones who are showing the most strength
And exactly when you need the support the most

You then start feeling you strength come back as you realize that those who mean the most to
You are now the source of your strength which in turn gives you the will to keep on fighting
And gives you some peace of mind in knowing that you made the right decision when
You stood up to fight the toughest battle

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