Tuesday, March 20, 2007

Cookies, Tides and Stewpots

Lucia's godfather, Uncle Phil (a.k.a. Philip the Pun), brought homemade chocolate chip cookies to Bede's gaming session tonight. What makes this occurance blog-worthy is that I called him earlier and asked him to make the cookies. "I'm sure I would get well faster if only I had chocolate-chip cookies," I said. "Would you please make some?" And he did. Thank you, Phil, for the cookies.

Bede wins the husband award of the week month year for his unflagging perseverance in taking on the bulk of the household duties while I was sick. Neither of us has ever shared chores 50/50-- it often seems as if we're either 100/100 or 0/0. That is, our house is very, very clean, or very, very much the opposite. Thank you, Bede, for everything you do.

Lucia was impatient with me during my illness. "Mommy get up! Mommy wake up!" she ordered, to no avail. I have learned how to feign deep sleep where I appear to be impervious to whining, but am up and alert in a second when I sense real distress. However, I have Lucia to thank this week, too, for helping me to stay brushed up on my stories even when I was too hoarse to speak for very long. Lucia's favorite story of the moment is Why the Tides Ebb and Flow, retold by Joan Chase Bowden, and illustrated by Marc Brown. She actually requested to take a bath today (complete with hair-washing) so that she could pretend her dollies were Stubborn Old Woman, Little Dog, Young Maiden, and Strong Young Man. A rubber bath-toy that vaguely looked like a seal was the rock in the hole in the sea. The highlight of the bath was when I unplugged the drain and she could watch the waters go "down, down, down into the hole in the sea."

"Why the Tides Ebb and Flow" is one of my favorite stories to tell. I'm a big fan of pourquoi or "just-so" stories. What are some of your favorite stories of how things came to be the way they are? Please let me know in the comments, and if there is enough feedback, I'll compile a list to share. While I could simply publish a list of my favorite tales, I'd like to know what stories specifically resonate with you.

P.S. Today, I recieved my new copy of Storytelling: Art and Technique, 3rd Edition. The copy I had in library school is still in a barn on the East Coast. If you are at all interested in storytelling, this book is for you. You definitely want the 3rd edition and not any of the earlier editions. At the end of the book is a "Baker's dozen" stories for the telling in honor of the great Augusta Baker. According to Wikipedia, Baker was a lioness of children's literature. Lovely!


david santos said...

This work is very good. Thank you
have nice week

HipWriterMama said...

Little Lucia is so sweet! Don't you just love her imagination! I bet it helps nurture and inspire your storytelling. I haven't read any just so stories in a very long time...I'll have to think about this one. Thanks for the book recommendations.

limpy99 said...

Not sure this tory qualifies as a "just-so" story, but there'a Madeline L'Engle story called "Dance in the Desert" or something like that. Just found it on our shelves; I think my mother smuggled it up from our house. Really cool.

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Limpy99: "Dance in the Desert" is lovely! I think you might also like Madeleine L'Engle's The Sphinx at Dawn, too.

HipWriterMama: Thanks! I do love Lucia's imagination, and it's fun to eavesdrop on her pretend play.

Lone Star Ma said...

I keep thinking of gruesome Greek myths...I'll have to keep trying to come up with something nice.

Lady K said...

SO sorry to hear you were sick! Chocolate really IS a cure all. I also believe in the power of CHEESE! Glad you're up and about, and those cookies look scrumptious!

Alkelda the Gleeful said...

Lady K: Alas, cheese has become one of my banes, i.e. it gives me big-time tummyaches. Goat-cheese, however, seems to be okay. It's good to hear from you, by the way. I miss Nonny.

LSM: Yeah, Hyacinth and Narcissus didn't fare too well, did they? But they make pretty flowers.