Friday, April 16, 2010

"When You're Gone"

"When You're Gone"

By Sabree
a Quatrain

There was no sudden healing
Now I'm left with an empty feeling
They tell me you've reached a better place
There is no easy way of dealing

I just want another taste
Of your song and beautiful face
As I watched you die, I knew it was your time to go
All the moments will soon erase

This broken heart, I'm still to sow
You suffered so much,I would know
In my heart forever you will stay
Did you ever know you were my hero?

I look forward to that day
When we will be reunited in some way
"I miss you" is all i can say
One more moment with you, I pray

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

Old Man and the Sea Essay

Life is full of obstacles. I don’t know if you have realized it but life isn’t a piece of cake. You can be wise or intelligent, rich or just satisfied but it doesn’t get any easier. It’s really unpredictable with twists and turns and detours that always come at the wrong time. Compare life to a maze. You need to stay on the path in order to have a successful perfect life. But who has a perfect well put together life? No one. It’s impossible to be perfect, peaceful, and happy 24/7. Inside your life mazy there are always things that get in the way like wrong ways and walls. These walls are like obstacles. Sometimes these obstacles are really difficult to deal with but other times they make life more suspenseful like a mystery and rewarding in the end. In the book the Old Ma and the Sea Santiago had to deal with many obstacles when he decided to go after the marlin. He had struggled with the obstacle of not having the boy, his hand cramping, and the sharks.

The first struggle that Santiago comes across in The Old Man and the Sea is not having the young boy, Manolin by his side while fishing. The old man and the boy used to fish together but, since Santiago hasn’t caught a fish in 83 days so Mainolin’s parents won’t let them fish together. They think he is bad luck. Santiago feels very lonely while he is out in the ocean. He talks to himself a lot since the boy is not with him anymore. They both had such a great relationship and there is sort of emptiness inside of Santiago. While Santiago is attempting to real in the fish he constantly says things like: “If the boy were here, he would wet the coils of the line. Yes, if the boy were here” (83). Santiago is confident at first but he slowly gets afraid and worried that he might not be able to complete this task without Manolin which is a huge affect on Santiago's character.

The obstacle that really set Santiago over the edge was when his hand cramped up. He was tugging on the line with all his strength to capture the marlin when his hand just shut down. There really couldn’t have been a more critical moment in the story for that hand to work properly. Santiago gets so frustrated with this set back. He is so determined to catch this fish so he can prove to the boy and mostly himself that he’s still got it. I can imagine how ticked Santiago must have been. He starts to get angry with his hand: “Why was I not born with two good hands? Perhaps it was my fault for not training that one properly” (85). He begins to question himself and feels nervous and troubled. He starts to eat the fish he caught, raw, because he believes it will fix his hand. In the end, he needed to be patient and wait until his hand would un-cramp.

While Santiago is out in the ocean he encounters some creatures that give him a run for his money. Santiago is trying to get home when a group of massive sharks start attacking at Santiago’s boat and his prize possession, the marlin. The sharks were vicious: “The old man could hear the noise of skin and flesh ripping on the big fish” (102). They took the whole entire marlin and left him with just the skeleton. This really sucks for Santiago since he just put so much time and effort into catching the marlin and then it’s swept out from under him. He was devastated and probably cried a little with the loss of the marlin. He thought that it wasn’t fair and wished the marlin was never even caught. But, not everything in life is fair and Santiago thought it was just good enough to be able to catch such a fish and was proud.

So how is your life maze? There will always be obstacles in the way of accomplishing what you want to do. But hey, that's life. It shows what kind of person you are when you deal with the obstacles. If you are like Santiago and not let the failures in life get you down and just brush it off, or in Santiago's case, take a nap. "Up the road, in his shack, the old man was sleeping again" (127). Even though it was difficult Santiago needed to put the past behind him and failure of not coming home with the marlin so he could move on in life.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

3rd Quarter Outside Reading Book Review

3rd Quarter Outside Reading Book Review
No Limits, Michael Phelps with Alan Abrahamson, Free Press, 2008
Genre: auto-biography

The book No limits is an auto-biography by Michael Phelps. The book is about Michael Phelps’ journey to the Olympics. If you didn’t know by now in the 2008 winter Olympics Michael Phelps broke Mark Spitz’s record from 1972 of seven gold medals in a single Olympics. Michael ended up going home to Baltimore from Beijing with eight gold medals. This book talks about from Michael’s childhood until where he is now, the greatest athlete who ever lived. He takes you through what it took to get to where he is today. It wasn’t easy with the 24/7 training, mental preparation, and commitment. Michael also describes each one of his Olympics gold medal races and you really feel as if you are reliving the race again with him.

I couldn’t find a quote….

The writing style of this book is really descriptive. Since Michael Phelps is the one telling the story he describes it as if you were there again. You can really feel like you are back at the Water Cube in Beijing, China in 2008 relieving the historic moments. He tells the story as he experienced it not as we all say it at on the television. Along with being descriptive Michael also puts lots of dates, very precise. I’ve never read other books by Michael Phelps, and yes there are others.

“So many people along the way, whatever it is you aspire to do, will tell you it can’t be done. But all it takes is imagination. You dream. You plan. You reach. There will be obstacles. There will be doubters. There will be mistakes. But with hard work, with belief, with confidence and trust in yourself and those around you, there are no limits” (back cover).
“I screamed. You bet I did. I mean, I totally let loose. I clenched my fist and arched my back and screamed and howled and yelled. And it felt good. So very good” (1).
I absolutely loved this book. It was of the best books I’ve ever read, and yes one reason it because it’s by Michael Phelps. I am also a swimmer so while reading this book I could relate to almost every part of it. From the water and land training to the moments where it all finally pays off and you have just proved what you can really do. I think it is a good book for anyone to read if you are a swimmer or athletic or not athletic at all. It can really be relatable to anyone who has ever had to put in hard work to accomplish something. It also gives you an insight to who Michael Phelps, the person, is.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Year Without Christmas

There was only one week until Christmas and everyone was hurrying around to get their last minute Christmas shopping done. Every mall in the world was packed with mothers, daughters, fathers, and grandparents. The stores each had huge blow out sales, 20% off, 30%, and off 50% off. The most popular store in the mall just so happened not to be a store at all. The line to get into Santa’s Workshop was wrapped around the mall once and almost twice. In the line there were children of all ages with their parents waiting patiently and were all elated. The workshop was decorated with white snowflakes. There were presents wrapped and tied with bows of all sorts of colors, blue, purple, pink, red, and green. Outside of the workshop stood a small girl the size of an elf dressed to look like an elf. Hanging on the front door of the mini house was a sign that read, THE NORTH POLE! Yes this was Santa’s house or what all the children thought was.
Up at the North Pole where Santa really lives it was busier than ever. Everyone was very garrulous and excited for Christmas. Every elf old and young work long and hard hours in Santa’s workshop. They were all zealots about Christmas. The elves made Barbie’s, trains, airplanes, baby dolls, and so many more toys that each child had on their list. As the elves worked downstairs Santa Clause was upstairs getting ready for what he had been preparing 365 days for.
“No Santa the belt needs to be over the vest, and tuck you're shirt in. Don’t forget to comb your beard, and would you please wipe the cookie crumbs off your face.”
“Now Mrs. Clause its not Christmas yet don’t worry yourself. I’m just checking out how I look in my new red suit” Santa said looking in to the mirror inside his room. He was wizened and old but still had a puerile heart.
“You look mighty fine Santa”
“I can’t believe Christmas is in only one week there is still so much to do and I still need to test my sleigh. Where did all the time go?”
“You had 365 days to get this ready Santa.”
Actually 366 days Mrs. Clause. It was a leap year this year” chimed in Christina, Santa’s personal helper.
“I'm going to go check out my new sleigh,” said Santa.
“It’s about time you did some work around here. Go. Shoo,” said Mrs. Clause in a jocular way.
So Santa happily walked down to the stable where the reindeer were. He said hello to each reindeer and walked over to the box that held his new sled. Benny the elf was there putting the final touches onto Santa’s sleigh.
“Oh hello there, Santa. Here let’s get you into your new sled. Up you go.” Benny was infallible and always came through for Santa, one of his best elves. He then carefully helped Santa into his sled. He showed him the buttons to press to start and stop the sled. Santa then pulled the red lever and away he went. H took off into the sky towards the clouds. The sled was working perfectly just as Santa hoped. All of a sudden, Santa heard a loud clang in the back. He quickly spun around to see what happened. As he did this he accidentally pushed the emergency stop button and the sled went tumbling down to the ground spinning out of control. The sled landed with a loud thud and Santa was gone forever.
“This is Breaking News here at the studio. Santa Clause has just been reported dead this afternoon. He had an unfortunate sleigh test ride and died. Elves are investigating but until then no one knows what will become of Christmas. Will there even be a Christmas?”
The fact of Santa’s death was not surrepitious. It flashed across every television screen in the world. Children stared crying parents jaws dropped. Would there be a Christmas this year, is the question that was on everyone’s minds.
It was just as crazy up in the North Pole as on everyone else around the world. One person unparticular was very worried about what was going to become of Christmas. It was Mrs. Clause. That day Mrs. Clause heard a small knock on her bedroom door.
“Come in please,” she said in a welcoming manner.
“Hello Ms. Clause”, said the man in the doorway.” My name is Tim Fandonburg.”
“Yes hello Tim. I know you, you are my grandson. Come in and take a seat young Tim.”
Tim was indeed Mr. and Mrs. Clause’s grandson. Their daughter Olivia had had a son names Tim and here he was at Mrs. Clause’s bedroom door.
“I heard of your great loss of your husband and come right over to offer my help. It sounds to me that you are in need of a new Santa Clause. Am I right?”
“Yes we are. Go on.”
“I feel like I am the next one in line to be Santa Clause. You see I am his grandson and I will do whatever there is that needs to be done in the next six days to be sure that Christmas runs just as smoothly as if Santa were here.”
Mrs. Clause thought only for a moment and then said: “Of course Tim we would be happy to have you as our new Santa.”
Tim took to the roll of Santa quite quickly. Tim ordered that Santa’s new suit was tailored to fit him and that the colors on the suit were black and orange instead of red and white. He relegated most of the elves from making toys. He only hooked up five of the reindeer to the sleigh and decided not to take Rudolph. Tim asked for only carrots and celery instead of cookie and milk. With these new rules Tim began to provoke the elves. He was not like the real Santa Clause and everyone loathed Tim.
The next day at lunch the elves went to Mrs. Clause and complained about Tim.
“I’d like to advocate for the elves but we can not have Tim as out Santa it’s just no right.”
“I concur. The children need a genial and magnanimous Santa Clause.
“How will the children react when they get no presents, even the ones on the good list?”
“Tim needs to be out, but who will replace him?” All eyes went to Mrs. Clause.
“No I can not possibly take on the role as Santa I am a woman and just can’t.” said Mrs. Clause trying to mollify the elves.
“But the children. They need you to!”
Finally Mrs. Clause agreed she kindly told Tim that he was no longer going to be Santa Clause and took the Santa suit from him. Tim then stormed out of the workshop with such a temper. When the door closed behind him all the elves cheered. A new suit was made for Mrs. Clause and all the reindeer were hooked onto the sleigh. The toys were loaded onto the sleigh. They Mrs. Clause stepped into the sleigh. She pulled on the reigns and away she flew.
“Merry Christmas to all and to all a good night!”

Monday, December 21, 2009

ORB quarter 2

2nd Quarter Outside Reading Book Review
The pact, Jodi Picoult, Harper Perennial, 1998
Genre: love story

The story The Pact is about two families, Gold’s and Hartes’s, who have been inseparable. Their children, Chris and Emily, begin to start dating which is no surprise to the families. Soon their relationship becomes more serious, until one day Emily gets shot in the head and dies. Through out the book the families try to figure out who really killed Emily Gold. The story takes place in Bainbridge, New Hampshire.

“The Pact is so good that we can’t put it down…suspenseful, intelligently written, topical.” –Detroit Free Press

The writing style of this book is very different than I’ve ever read. Usually I read books that just tell the story in a continuous flow, from beginning to end. In The Pact Picoult changes views between now and then. During the now chapters you read about all the different clues the lawyers are finding out to prove who really shot Emily. In the then chapters you read about how the two families meet and how Emily and Chris’s relationship develops. Picoult puts in so much detail you can picture so perfectly the scene of Emily’s death or even get a feel of how Emily’s parents felt when they heard the news.

“She turned in the same direction, and they bumped noses hard, but then she laughed and it was all right because this was Em. Her mouth was the softest thing he’d ever felt, and he pulled on her jaw to make it open a little, and his tongue ran over the neat line of her teeth” (93).
(I can’t decide)
Chris hugged her and buried his face in her neck. Emily could feel the exertion of his heart and his lungs. She imagined the crowd watching as they embraced. The fact that everyone knew someone like him had picked someone like her was one of the thing she loved about being Chris’s girlfriend” (140).

I have to say that this was probably the best book I’ve ever read. I loved reading about Emily and Chris growing up together, from when they were first born until Emily died. I can kind of relate to this book which makes it really cool. My parents are best friends with the Westbrook’s making me friends with their son, Jamie, just like the Gold’s and Hartes’s. This book had so much emotion in it, between Emily dying and then how much Emily and Chris loved each other. The story always left you wondering what was going to happen next so I couldn’t put the book down. I highly recommend it if you like love stories and mysteries.

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Swimming On The Stage

Value vs. valuable? What's the difference? Is there a difference? To me there is a strong differeence that some people don't understand. People now a days are more concerned with the valuable things. somethig that has a pricetag on it. They don't think about the valuable moments that we just can't get back once their gone. So which one would I choose if I had a choice? I really can't say!

I am frozen behind the starting block in fear. My legs fell like jello so much that I can barley hold my own weight from falling. My stomach is churning because of the nervous energy that is bottled up inside of me. On the right side of me is my competition , Katie Tyler. I can see in her eyes that she is extremely ready and that this isn't going to be an easy race. I start to shake out my muscles, to get them loose for my race. I swim my arms in a circular motion and then slap my arms against my back. I take a slow deep breath clearing my mind of anything other than swimming at this point. Suddenly I fell i slight touch on my shoulder. I turn around quick to my swim coach, Tara, she has been coaching me since I started swimming for the Swords. She begins to whisper in my ear as if she is telling me a secret. She gives me a quick pep talk to get me pumped for my race. After she leaves I then take off my warm clothes and place them on the chair behind me. I stand staring down the pool absolutely ready to own this race.
I'm wearing my favorite suit that I have for the most part won every race i swam in it. It has gotten me about at least 5 different records between championships and Swords records. So I guess you could call it my lucky suit. My suit is of course a Speedo! It is just a plain black suit with white trim along the edges. My Speedo is a size 26,an extremely small bathing suit size. I hate with a burning passion anyone who wears baggy bathing suits. I think its sloppy and very unprofessional. By a bathing suit you can tell a lot about a swimmer. Since my suit is so small it takes probably about 10 minutes to get into it. Yes, you read right 10 minutes. You may think I'm crazy but that is actually normal for any U.S.A. swimmer. I got my suit at a swim meet from a booth that was selling all kinds of swim apparel. It cost about $60. But for how much its been through I think that its worth around $200 to me.

The lights are dimmed and my heart is pumping. I have been preparing for this night forever. This is the third school talent show I've been in. The act before me has just finished and I'm up next. I smooth out my dress, fix may hair and take a look into the crowd. Although the curtain is hiding part of my vision I can see that the auditorium is packed, a full house. I can hear my name being called from the seats. I slowly walk onto the stage, being extra careful i don't trip in the heels that I'm wearing. I am standing cater stage now, and I listen for Melanie to finish introducing me. The curtains open and I am handed a microphone. The lights are shining on me, making my dress sparkle.The music fills the auditorium. My voice begins to project the lyrics into the microphone. Standing center stage is like my second home. I love being up there preforming in front of a crowd. I enjoy entertaining people. I then slow down to finish the song. Suddenley the crowd jumps up giving me a standing ovation. I just take in the moment and stand there, center stage. Right then i have the adrenalin rush that makes you feel ecstatic inside and makes me able to do it over and over again.

I value both my bathing suit and preforming at the talent show for similar reasons. Swimming is something to do to get stress out after a long day and clam me down when I'm angry. It also something I do to just express joy. If you have seen me swim you can tell that it is just something I enjoy and am very passionate about. I value preforming because it also gives me a chance to express myself. I can pick a song happy or sad depending on what mood I'm in and express myself that way. I use singing as an outlet as also for swimming.
I value my bathing suit and preforming at the talent show for different reasons. Singing is something that I can do for myself something I can do on my own time. My bathing suit on the other hand I use for competing. I treat swimming very seriously. Have you ever heard of a hardcore swimmer, because that would be me! Swimming about My saying is life sucks... I rather swim. Swimming Singing I do for fun. There is no competition when I'm singing in my shower or at church.
Although my bathing suit and singing are valuable for different reasons one main reason I value them so much is that I wouldn't be able to live without one or the other. My suit, swimming, keeps me grounded and singing allows me to express myself. I would never trade anything for being able to preform or my suit.

Tuesday, October 13, 2009

First Quarter Outside Reading Book

First Quarter Outside Reading Book
The Fortunes of Indigo Skye by Deb Caletti. Simon & Schuster, 2008
Genre: Realistic Fiction

The book I read for my outside reading book this term was The Fortunes of Indigo Skye. She was a waitress in a small diner called Carrera’s in Seattle. On her shift a new guy came in that she named the “Vespa Guy”. This “Vespa Guy” gave her 2.5 million dollars. She was extremely shocked and let the money go to her head. In getting this money it all went downhill for her. She lost her job, got into a fight with her boyfriend, and ended up running away from her problems. At the end of the book she finally realizes how having the money has changed her, so she decides to give all the money away to other family and friends who need it.

A review by Little Willow “If you couldn’t already tell, I really enjoyed this book. There’s more whimsy here than some of Caletti’s previous novels, but never to an unrealistic degree. This isn’t yet another rags-to-riches tale nor a simple story of “money can’t buy happiness.” This book is about a girl on the cusp of adulthood who actually likes her life and doesn’t want it to change that much. She would rather be poor and happy than wealthy and miserable. Indigo has a great set of values and a great sense of self. Those are her true fortunes.”

The writhing style of the author is different than anything else that I’ve read. She does a lot of comparing and contrasting in the book. If there an event in the book she will compare it with another thing that would remind the main character about it. In the quote further down she compares being ready to a boy dancing. She had written the book in first person, the main character is telling the story.

“Ready is the reluctant guy on the dance floor. You ask him and he says no; you ask him again, drag him by his wrists, and when he’s finally there, after a few steps, the music fills him and he’s cutting loose like there’s no tomorrow.”

I really didn’t like this book at all. I really liked the authors writing style though, but everything thing else I wasn’t really happy with. One reason I disliked the book was because it reminded me of The Pearl. The book reminding me of The Pearl is a bad thing because I didn’t like The Pearl and it might not have been that bad but we just had read it. Another reason I disliked this book was because it was way too predictable. I knew almost everything that was going to happen to Indigo before it happened and to me that takes the fun out of reading the book.