Don’t Cry Over Spilled Orange Juice — Clean It Up!

Following a rather unfortunate mishap in the kitchen the other morning, it occurred to Little Red Bear and me that, to the best of our knowledge, no one had ever written a poem or advisory about spilled orange juice.  We are told from an early age not to cry over spilled milk, of course. And if we spill salt, a pinch tossed over the left shoulder for good luck will supposedly blind the devil waiting there.

But what do we do about spilled orange juice?  Cry?  Don’t cry?  Splash some over our shoulder?  And what can we learn from the experience?  So, we sharpened our pencils and set to work.

In the end, neither Little Red Bear nor I could think of anything to do about spilled orange juice other than to simply get busy and clean up the mess, being especially grateful that it  was merely orange juice and not our treasured, albeit icky-sticky, honey supply.

And, upon further review, we found the orange juice innocent in the  regrettable and messy spillage episode, and blamed it all on the yellow cup which proved itself to be notably deceptive and unreliable.  And haste, which, of course, we all know what that makes because someone did take the time to develop a proverb about the consequences of haste and waste.

When pouring fresh yellow orange juice into a non-see-through yellow cup,

Take a moment to switch the light on to save five minutes cleaning up.

Pouring in the dark soon leads to over-filling and spilling, you see,

Leaving behind a mighty mess which must be sopped and mopped up by me.

This I have learned from experience, such a true and noble teacher,

Who knew that congenial yellow cups could have this peculiar feature?

Thanks always for visiting with us. A single kind word or act of kindness can turn someone’s entire day or life around.  In a world where we can be anything — be Kind, and the reason someone smiles today! – Jim (and Red!)


If you enjoy your visits here Become a Patron of this site and my writing work, helping to grow and expand our outreach to others. Find out more and discover Patron benefits today!


                    “Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.”               – John Barrymore

            “To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow.   So, do it.” – Kurt Vonnegut


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

                                      “Reading should not be presented to children as a chore or duty.                                       It should be offered to them as a precious gift.” — Kate DiCamillo


 

Special Just The Way You Are

It may sound silly and a few may giggle,

Or feel uneasy and then start to wriggle.

But we’re each very special in our own way,

So, taking a moment to let you know that today.

What Mr. Rogers said is truer than true,

I’m grateful for each and every one of you.

And whether you are near or somewhere afar,

Please know that I like you,  just the way you are.


Thanks as always for visiting!  A single word, smile or act of kindness has the magical power to totally transform someone’s day and life.  Be the reason someone smiles today! — Jim  (and Red!)


        “Let everything we do and say be an expression of the beauty in our heart,                 always based on love.” – Don Miguel Ruiz

“The sign of a beautiful person is that they always see beauty in others.” – Omar Suleiman


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“The greatest gift you ever give is your honest self.” – Fred Rogers


 

Sharing Our Gifts Poem — “The Poet Who Didn’t Know It”

Our gifts and talents are most valuable and shine most brightly when passed on for the benefit and in the service of others.  Step out from behind the curtain to follow your heart and passion, and to share your gifts and talents with the world.

Thanks as always for visiting and spending time with us, and hope you enjoy this little verse.  Be kind, and the reason someone smiles today! — Jim  (and Red!)

Once upon a time,

There was a lovely poet.

But the only problem was,

She simply didn’t know it.

Unsteady and unsure,

Not knowing what to do.

She never penned a line,

Nor rhymed a verse or two.

Sadly the world missed out,

On what she might have said.

Her inner thoughts and feelings,

All left silent and unread.

Have you a verse within you?

Something you would like to say?

Write it down and let it out,

Please don’t wait another day!

 


“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” — Mary Anne Evans


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“Hide not your talents, they for use were made. What’s a sundial in the shade?”

– Benjamin Franklin


 

Poetry Fun With A Twist — “The Story of Jack and Jill Retold”

With the month of April and National Poetry Month winding down, my writing muse urged me to give poetry another go before returning to work with Little Red Bear on his adventure stories.

If new to my writing pages site and a poetry fan, I invite you to find more on my  “Random Acts of Poetry” page, along with mini rhymes simply for fun on the “Dime Rhymes” page, along with many Features and Short Stories under the ‘Short Works & Free Reads’ tab at the top of the page.

So, hope you enjoy this retelling of an old classic, with a twist.  As in first ‘twisting’ the top of a cookie and then licking the cream filling inside, of course.


“The Story of Jack and Jill Retold”

 

Jack and Jill

Went up the hill,

To fetch a pail of Oreo’s.

Neither fell down,

Nor broke their crown,

Whilst on a break from after-school jobs at Florio’s.

 

For while pizza is fine and always a treat,

Cookies on a hilltop can never be beat!

Simply licking cookies sitting under a tree,

It all sounds like a very good time, to me.

 

Playfully seeking out hidden shapes in a cloud,

Proclaiming discoveries, exclaiming out loud.

Moments to enjoy, look back and reflect,

Gather our thoughts, and with spirit connect.

 

We all should go on retreats of peace now and then,

For when the next chance may come, we never know when.

Will you take a break to enjoy some cookies and clouds,

Visiting with Mother Nature away from the crowds?

 

Made a few revisions to the old tale this day,

With no one being injured, at work or at play.

Just a little retelling, another fun poem,

Which should be no surprise, as by now we all know ‘em.

 

So, our Jack and Jill

Went up that hill,

Enjoying their pail of Oreo’s.

Time spent together,

Is always a treasure,

But now back to writing short story-o’s.

 


Thanks for visiting with us today!

We receive signals from our bodies all day long, whether we choose to call them intuition, gut feelings, or inner wisdom.

We often ignore our body’s signals and keep pushing our own ego agendas or allowing others to tell us what to do instead.  And that is when we need to step back, walk away if need be, and enjoy some quiet, peaceful, non-stressful time with nature.  Or whatever is relaxing and recharging for you. Maybe it’s munching on some cookies while finding interesting shapes in the clouds.

Happiness is a decision and a way of travel as we go thru life, aware and fully experiencing the journey along the way, and not a destination to be hopefully found at some magical yet undetermined endpoint.  Simply choose to be happy and kind in the present moment, and be the reason someone else smiles today!

Wishing you Peace and Happiness on your journey.  —  Jim (and Red!)


If you enjoyed this piece, you may also enjoy → “I Will Greet This Day With Love In My Heart” 

(And if a new visitor — Welcome! To find out what we are all about here, please check out — “Welcome To My Writing Pages!” — and sign up to follow and be notified of every new post!)


 “The present moment is filled with joy and happiness. If you are attentive, you will see it.”  – Thich Nhat Hanh

“Mindfulness isn’t difficult. We just need to remember to do it.” – Sharon Saltzberg


Meet Little Red Bear & His Friends —  “Once Upon A Time In A Very Special Woods . . . .”


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages! 
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

              “So of cheerfulness or a good temper, the more it is spent, the more it remains.”             – Ralph Waldo Emerson


This is a purposefully non-monetized, ad-free site to be able to offer the most enjoyable reading and viewing experience for everyone, with all content freely shared, and generates no income to offset the costs of maintaining and operating. If you enjoy your visits and time with us, Join our new Patron Community today, because together we can do so much!

With the help of patrons, each month we are able to donate free print copies of “The Adventures of Little Red Bear: The First Holler!” to Senior Citizens,  School Libraries and Classrooms, and to those who could otherwise not obtain a copy.

Patrons also help my friend Little Red Bear and me to continue this as a non-monetized, ad-free site,  dedicated solely to entertainment and educational purposes while sharing positive messages of happiness, inspiration, and kindness with everyone. We invite you to join us in making a positive difference in the world!


                          “What day is it?” asked Pooh.          “It’s today,” squeaked Piglet.                                  “My favourite day,” said Pooh.


 

A Dime Rhyme Poem — “Little Tommy O’Flanagan”

Sharing a wee bit of a poem for National Poetry Month in April — “Little Tommy O’Flanagan”.  It’s one of those short little poems just for fun.  Check out the Dime Rhymes page for more.


Little Tommy O’Flanagan

Oh, to see our poor little boy Tommy O’Flanagan,

Jumping a puddle and falling splat on his can again.

Off running and dripping now on his way home,

All mucky and muddy and covered in loam.

Tommy with all his wits now collected,

Is trying to sneak in undetected.

Our  dear sweet but splattered little Tommy O’Flanagan,

Hoping ne’er to be caught in his latest shenanigan.


Thanks always for visiting with us and sharing our writing journeys.  A word of encouragement during a failure is worth more than an hour of praise after a success. Be an encourager and the reason someone smiles today!  —  Jim  (and Red!)


 Family Times — Together Times — The Best Times!


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“Knowing others is wisdom. Knowing yourself is Enlightenment.” – Lao Tzu


April Is National Poetry Month — It’s Dime Rhyme Time!

April is National Poetry Month!  Organized by the Academy of American Poets, it is about increasing both awareness and appreciation of poetry.

National Poetry Month is described as the largest literary celebration in the world, with tens of millions of readers, students, teachers, librarians, booksellers, publishers, bloggers, and poets acknowledging poetry’s important place in our culture and lives.  If you would like more information, visit the National Poetry Month Site.

Accordingly, Little Red Bear and I thought that we should step up and do our part to help foster awareness and appreciation of poetry.  Such as it is here, of course.

Growing up years ago on the outskirts of St. Louis, Missouri, during breakfast every morning the kitchen radio was tuned in to the dominant, powerhouse AM radio station in the city at that time — “KMOX – the Voice of St. Louis”, with a mostly news, weather, sports and all-talk format. The morning radio show, “Total Information A.M.”,  featured a pair of men who were stellar in their jobs and radio institutions throughout the area, Rex Davis and Bob Hardy, both still remembered and well-known, though now passed.

One of their ongoing features was a fun and highly popular little segment in which they invited listeners to send in their own original short poetry works to be read live on the air by them each morning.  They in turn sent the chosen submitter back a Thank You note on KMOX stationery which read – “From listeners like you, we both take heart. Here’s our dime and our thanks, for doing your part.”

An accompanying dime was taped to the note.  The daily radio segment was, of course, called — “Dime Rhymes.”

There are some longer poems for reading pleasure here on my writing blog, but I frequently come up with much shorter little verses and wonder what to do with them.   Then the answer came to me — set up a “Dime Rhymes” page in honor of these gentlemen who brought us so much entertainment on the radio years ago.  A page simply for fun, shorter and quick little verses to build up over time.  And perhaps to include some guest contributors along the way, as well.

So under the heading of “Short Works & Free Reads” at the top of the page, you will now find in the drop-down menu a heading entitled “Dime Rhymes.”  Free for personal enjoyment and reading pleasure, as are all things here. I have added a few poems to get it started, and here is a link to help you find it the first time — Dime Rhymes.  Hope you enjoy!

Thanks as always for visiting!  And if you feel moved to create a Dime Rhyme yourself, please send it in.  Who knows?  Little Red Bear might even send you back a dime.* — Jim  (and Red!)

dr-seuss-5

Horizontal Rule 12

*Legal Stuff– Submission of a Dime Rhyme constitutes permission and rights to share on the blog. The dime remuneration is not guaranteed or promised, and entirely dependent upon the financial status of the blog holder at any given moment, which is never really that good, in forma pauperis.  All submissions must reflect the “G” rated status of the blog, no exceptions.  Not that it matters because it wouldn’t be selected anyway.  All questions or concerns to be addressed to our esteemed attorney, Bob the Badger, Esq., handwritten in triplicate.  Submission does not guarantee selection or use.  Yada, yada, yada, actori incumbit probatio, animus contrahendi, not excluding casus fortuitis, assuming compos mentis of submitter, all offers voided by malum prohibitum not excluding malum in se in perpetuity and nonsense forevermore.

Horizontal Rule 12

Family Times — Together Times — The Best Times!

“Children are made readers on the laps of their parents.” — Emilie Buchwald

Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

Happy Halloween! Featuring “The Raven” by Edgar Allan Poe

There are many works of literature and poetry that have stuck with me and been favorites, long after being required to dissect, analyze and memorize them for testing purposes in school some years ago.  Now, they can simply be enjoyed as entertainment on their own merits as originally intended by the authors.  I intend to pass along and share some of these personal favorites from time to time going forward.

One such piece is Edgar Allan Poe’s “The Raven”, a very appropriate share on Halloween.  This narrative poem was originally attributed to Poe in the ‘New York Evening Mirror’ on January 29, 1845.  Though not bringing much financial benefit on  its own, “The Raven” served to make Poe very popular in his time.  It remains one of the most well-liked poems ever written, and always one of my personal favorites.  The poem features a distraught lover sadly lamenting the loss of his love, Lenore, on a bleak December night.  He is visited by a talking raven, and the poem follows his slow descent into madness.

“THE RAVEN”

Once upon a midnight dreary, while I pondered, weak and weary, 

Over many a quaint and curious volume of forgotten lore— 

    While I nodded, nearly napping, suddenly there came a tapping, 

As of someone gently rapping, rapping at my chamber door. 

“’Tis some visitor,” I muttered, “tapping at my chamber door— 

            Only this and nothing more.” 

    Ah, distinctly I remember it was in the bleak December; 

And each separate dying ember wrought its ghost upon the floor. 

    Eagerly I wished the morrow;—vainly I had sought to borrow 

    From my books surcease of sorrow—sorrow for the lost Lenore— 

For the rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore— 

            Nameless here for evermore. 

    And the silken, sad, uncertain rustling of each purple curtain 

Thrilled me—filled me with fantastic terrors never felt before; 

    So that now, to still the beating of my heart, I stood repeating 

    “’Tis some visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door— 

Some late visitor entreating entrance at my chamber door;— 

            This it is and nothing more.” 

    Presently my soul grew stronger; hesitating then no longer, 

“Sir,” said I, “or Madam, truly your forgiveness I implore; 

    But the fact is I was napping, and so gently you came rapping, 

    And so faintly you came tapping, tapping at my chamber door, 

That I scarce was sure I heard you”—here I opened wide the door;— 

            Darkness there and nothing more. 

    Deep into that darkness peering, long I stood there wondering, fearing, 

Doubting, dreaming dreams no mortal ever dared to dream before; 

    But the silence was unbroken, and the stillness gave no token, 

    And the only word there spoken was the whispered word, “Lenore?” 

This I whispered, and an echo murmured back the word, “Lenore!”— 

            Merely this and nothing more. 

    Back into the chamber turning, all my soul within me burning, 

Soon again I heard a tapping somewhat louder than before. 

    “Surely,” said I, “surely that is something at my window lattice; 

      Let me see, then, what thereat is, and this mystery explore— 

Let my heart be still a moment and this mystery explore;— 

            ’Tis the wind and nothing more!” 

    Open here I flung the shutter, when, with many a flirt and flutter, 

In there stepped a stately Raven of the saintly days of yore; 

    Not the least obeisance made he; not a minute stopped or stayed he; 

    But, with mien of lord or lady, perched above my chamber door— 

Perched upon a bust of Pallas just above my chamber door— 

            Perched, and sat, and nothing more. 

Then this ebony bird beguiling my sad fancy into smiling, 

By the grave and stern decorum of the countenance it wore, 

“Though thy crest be shorn and shaven, thou,” I said, “art sure no craven, 

Ghastly grim and ancient Raven wandering from the Nightly shore— 

Tell me what thy lordly name is on the Night’s Plutonian shore!” 

            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” 

    Much I marvelled this ungainly fowl to hear discourse so plainly, 

Though its answer little meaning—little relevancy bore; 

    For we cannot help agreeing that no living human being 

    Ever yet was blessed with seeing bird above his chamber door— 

Bird or beast upon the sculptured bust above his chamber door, 

            With such name as “Nevermore.” 

    But the Raven, sitting lonely on the placid bust, spoke only 

That one word, as if his soul in that one word he did outpour. 

    Nothing farther then he uttered—not a feather then he fluttered— 

    Till I scarcely more than muttered “Other friends have flown before— 

On the morrow he will leave me, as my Hopes have flown before.” 

            Then the bird said “Nevermore.” 

    Startled at the stillness broken by reply so aptly spoken, 

“Doubtless,” said I, “what it utters is its only stock and store 

    Caught from some unhappy master whom unmerciful Disaster 

    Followed fast and followed faster till his songs one burden bore— 

Till the dirges of his Hope that melancholy burden bore 

            Of ‘Never—nevermore’.” 

    But the Raven still beguiling all my fancy into smiling, 

Straight I wheeled a cushioned seat in front of bird, and bust and door; 

    Then, upon the velvet sinking, I betook myself to linking 

    Fancy unto fancy, thinking what this ominous bird of yore— 

What this grim, ungainly, ghastly, gaunt, and ominous bird of yore 

            Meant in croaking “Nevermore.” 

    This I sat engaged in guessing, but no syllable expressing 

To the fowl whose fiery eyes now burned into my bosom’s core; 

    This and more I sat divining, with my head at ease reclining 

    On the cushion’s velvet lining that the lamp-light gloated o’er, 

But whose velvet-violet lining with the lamp-light gloating o’er, 

            She shall press, ah, nevermore! 

    Then, methought, the air grew denser, perfumed from an unseen censer 

Swung by Seraphim whose foot-falls tinkled on the tufted floor. 

    “Wretch,” I cried, “thy God hath lent thee—by these angels he hath sent thee 

    Respite—respite and nepenthe from thy memories of Lenore; 

Quaff, oh quaff this kind nepenthe and forget this lost Lenore!” 

            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” 

    “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil!— 

Whether Tempter sent, or whether tempest tossed thee here ashore, 

    Desolate yet all undaunted, on this desert land enchanted— 

    On this home by Horror haunted—tell me truly, I implore— 

Is there—is there balm in Gilead?—tell me—tell me, I implore!” 

            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” 

    “Prophet!” said I, “thing of evil!—prophet still, if bird or devil! 

By that Heaven that bends above us—by that God we both adore— 

    Tell this soul with sorrow laden if, within the distant Aidenn, 

    It shall clasp a sainted maiden whom the angels name Lenore— 

Clasp a rare and radiant maiden whom the angels name Lenore.” 

            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” 

    “Be that word our sign of parting, bird or fiend!” I shrieked, upstarting— 

“Get thee back into the tempest and the Night’s Plutonian shore! 

    Leave no black plume as a token of that lie thy soul hath spoken! 

    Leave my loneliness unbroken!—quit the bust above my door! 

Take thy beak from out my heart, and take thy form from off my door!” 

            Quoth the Raven “Nevermore.” 

    And the Raven, never flitting, still is sitting, still is sitting 

On the pallid bust of Pallas just above my chamber door; 

    And his eyes have all the seeming of a demon’s that is dreaming, 

    And the lamp-light o’er him streaming throws his shadow on the floor; 

And my soul from out that shadow that lies floating on the floor 

            Shall be lifted—nevermore!

By — Edgar Allan Poe

One of my favorite renditions of “The Raven” was performed by James Earl Jones on “The Simpsons” first “Treehouse of Horror” Halloween Special, on October 25, 1990.

 Thanks as always for visiting!  Wishing everyone a fun and safe Happy Halloween!

A Look Back — “Ode to Summer”

“Ode to Summer”

Vacation trips, adventures, off-roading and more,

Fun with friends and family, summer’s never a bore.

Splashing dog washes and sudsy car washes,

Out in the backyards with our gardens and squashes.

We went to the beach (with kites!) and combed the seashore,

Searching for shells and pirates and treasures of yore.

Snorkeled and swam and played in the ocean,

Slathered with sunscreen and all sorts of lotion.

Towering castles we built entirely of sand,

And it was so much fun to step off dry land.

Barbeques, grilling, picnics, cookouts and parties,

Tossing candy to kids— to each a sweet roll of Smarties!

Jumping in puddles with muddy galoshes,

Searching for Bigfoot and hairy Sasquatches.

Trips to the park and we stayed out after dark,

Watching fireflies and cheering each July firework’s spark.

Fishing, camping, biking, hiking, and parasailing,

We did it all until the wallet was wailing.

We sat in the porch swing, relaxing with tea.

Oh! What a summer we had, you next to me.

Too soon summer has ended and its now the fall season,

But it’s fun to look back, as if we needed a reason.

Artwork by John Sloane -- "Good Old Summertime"

Artwork by John Sloane — “Good Old Summertime”

Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“Hello August, My Old Friend . . .”

Happy August!  I think.  Truth be told, the month of August is a slog thru, survival test month for me.

Heat, Humidity and afternoon Headaches are a losing trifecta.  Waking up clear-headed this morning, I realized that trying to work thru a headache is like trying to drive your car with the emergency brake on. You can eventually, slowly get there, but aware of something grinding, dragging, holding you back and burning all the way.

Had another nagging, summer humidity headache yesterday afternoon and the result was, oddly enough –  a poem.    More or less.  Hard to see thru the haze, but it might be.

With deepest and heartfelt apologies to Simon and Garfunkel then . . . . . .

Hello August, my old friend.
I’ve come to sweat with you again.
Because my skin is quickly burning,
Feeling like I’m on a spit turning.
And the pain that was seared into my brain,
Still remains . . . . within the sound . . . . of agony.

“Friends,” said I, “you may not know,
Summer’s sultry heat wave grows.
Hear the forecast that it might teach you.
Use some sunscreen so it won’t scorch you.”
Hope my words, will be heeded by one and all,
As sweating . . . . we await the cooling breezes . . . . of Fall.

So here we are in  August.  That sweltering, grass-turned-brown, kids-back-to-school, muggy, hot and shriveled month that stands like the Great Wall of China between summer and the glorious season of Autumn.   Kind of like surmounting the final obstacle on the course, fighting off exhaustion to doggedly climb over the Warped Wall to finish the race and survive to reach the other side, where sweet and spicy Pumpkin Pies, Candied Apples, Cider, Cookies and the open Highway to the Holiday Season await!

Hang in there and stay cool.  Take frequent cooling breaks if working outdoors, limit physical exertion, wear loose fitting, light-colored clothing and stay hydrated with cool, clear liquids.   And please remember to bring the pets indoors with you during extreme summer heat.  They are wearing a fur coat and overheat, too.  And just like children, they overheat as quickly as we do, if not more so.  And check the backseats of cars, no one left behind.

We’re off for some iced tea and aspirins.  And a big bucket of ice.  Thanks as always for visiting with us!   —  Jim (and Red!)

Dog- Funny- Bulldog On Ice Cubes
Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

A Christmas Poem — “What To Do On A Christmas Week Night?”

What to do on a Christmas week night,

When everyone else is busy?

The shows are repeats and no sports on,

So I’ll call up my old friend Lizzie!

But wait – she carries that big bad axe,

And the last time I called her hair frizzy.

Just leave her be, so safe we’ll be,

As she sometimes goes off in a tizzy.

So what to do on a Christmas week night,

When everyone else is busy?

I’ll just have some cookies and punch,

And stop when I start to feel dizzy.   

Food- Punch- Hot Cranberry Punch

Merry Christmas and The Joys of the Holiday Season!