Bringing Back Joy

Blogging is important.

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From Dean Shareski’s Presentation at #SeLNO13

Because I strongly believe this, I often wonder what it takes to get people writing and sharing their thinking.

It’s easy to put “blogging” at the end of the “to do” list.

Dean Shareski made me think about this a lot recently when he showed up in Thunder Bay and asked us why JOY was not at the centre of the work we do with kids.

Reflecting on my own writing, I realized that the JOY had gone out of sharing my learning and writing my blog.  And when it isn’t fun for me, it is even less fun for my readers.

From Dean Shareski, Presentation to #SeLNO13, November 2013

As I was struggling with how to put some fun into blogging,  there was Dean again, and Brian Harrison, with a new MEME. This one is a blogging challenge to bring some fun and silliness back into sharing and writing.

Dean: “And besides, it’s just a good excuse to write which is never a bad thing.”

So here I am, biting on the challenge, with the hopes of reminding myself why we blog, read, share, think, and start conversations.

So thank you Lee Kolbert, Dean Shareski, and Brian Harrison, all bloggers I learn so much from. You model such excellent collaborative practices, and you are catalysts to get the rest of us sharing again.

The challenge: (from Lee Kolbert) (Read here for Dean Shareski’s response)

Here’s how it works:

  1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger. 
  2. Share 11 random facts about yourself. 
  3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you. 
  4. List 11 bloggers. 
  5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all the bloggers know they have been nominated. Don’t nominate a blogger who has nominated you. 

So here we go!

  1. Acknowledge the nominating blogger. 

Principal-extraordinaire Brian Harrison

2. Share 11 random facts about yourself. 

Eleven Random Facts About Donna Miller Fry:

1. I *detest* Chicken Caesar Salad.

2. Ben Wicks drew me into one of his comics.  Really.

3. My life was once completely focused on Mysis relicta.

4. I have visited every province and territory in Canada.

5. I can’t sing.  At all.

6. My favourite American State is Oregon.  By far.

7. I am fascinated by ice.  And wild blueberries.

8. My beagle, Basso, jumps into bed with us at 4 a.m. every morning. Like clockwork.

9. I am going to be an artist when I grow up.

10.  I have a serious, incurable addiction to espresso.

11.  Life is too short for bad coffee.

3. Answer the 11 questions the nominating blogger has created for you.

My Questions for You Are…

  1. Who is your favourite superhero? Spiderman, hands down.  It’s all you need to know about why spider silk is so strong.
  2. What is the most interesting place you have visited? The northwest coast of Newfoundland – Gros Morne to Saint Anthony.
  3. IOS or Android? Family of 4: 4 MacBook Pros, 4 iPads, 5 iPods, 4 iPhones, Apple TV.  Um…. 
  4. Would you rather be a hammer or a nail-Why? Hammer.  I could never be a nail.
  5. What was your first part time job? Clerk at the local pharmacy.  I was 13 and called in because they were short staffed.  It was on the job training and I stayed for five years!
  6. Left on a desert island, what 3 books do you take with you? Any of these:

Screen shot 2013-12-12 at 12.31.33 PM7. When do you usually write your blog posts? Life is a blog post. They are always swirling.

8. Pizza- thin crust or regular? Thin.  No question.

9. What was the topic of your first blog post?  Hmmm, good question.  Here is the first one from my last blog, the oldest I can find online: Ringing In the New Year With New Ideas. It’s about what we learn when we connect with people outside our immediate field of interest, and how this can move our thinking and learning forward.

10. Did you ever own an 8-Track cassette? No, but my father did.  We listened to it whenever we went “up the road” to the trapline.  I can still hear his favourites: “Big John, big bad John”.

11. Lennon or McCartney? McCartney, though I want to say Lennon

4. List 11 bloggers. (I have chosen *northern* bloggers – all Canadians, mainly from Ontario and Manitoba. Be sure to visit them!)

1. Clarence Fisher @glassbeed

2. Brandon Grasley @bgrasley

3. David Jaremy @davidjaremy

4. Sheila Stewart @sheilaspeaking

5. Darren Kuropatwa @dkuropatwa

6. Jenni Scott-Marciski @jmarciski

7. George Siemens @gsiemens

8. Julie Balen @jacbalen

9. Stacey Wallwin @wallwins

10. Rob Fisher @RobCFisher

11. Lindy Henderson @hendylou

5. Post 11 questions for the bloggers you nominate to answer, and let all the bloggers know they have been nominated. Don’t nominate a blogger who has nominated you. 

Okay, northern bloggers, I have some questions for you:

(with a caution from Lee KolbertIn response to a FB post about this meme,Dan Callahan made a really good point. He said, “This seems like a plot to get the bloggers of the world to answer most of their potential credit card/iTunes security questions.” While that is certainly not the intent, (as always) be careful about what you post online. )

1. What was the first “subject area” you studied after leaving high school?

2. If you could cook anything, what would you cook for supper tonight?

3. What makes you stop and pause during your day?

4. Cats or Dogs?

5. If you could have only one Pinterest Board, what would the topic be?

6. What was the catalyst that got you blogging in the first place?

7. What is one (funny) childhood misconception that you had, or that you have experienced with a young child? (for example, we lived near Manilla, Ontario during the eruption of Mount Pinatubo. My 5-year-old daughter watched the news and thought it was right near our house!)

8. What was your favourite summer job?

9. Where do you find flow?

10. What was one personal challenge you faced in 2013?

11. What are YOU passionate about?

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from Dean Shareski, #SeLNO13
from Dean Shareski, #SeLNO13

Have fun with this! Share, play, learn, connect.

Let’s keep it going in 2014.

Merry Christmas, PLN!

Some other “players”:

13 thoughts on “Bringing Back Joy

  1. Brilliant. It was such a treat to finally meet you last month and this just adds more to your story. I’m grateful for people like you and hope we get to cross paths even more in the future. Have a Merry Christmas with your family and thanks for playing.

    1. Thanks for getting us rolling on this!

      I still have so much to think about after your trip to Thunder Bay. We really appreciate that you took the time to share your learning with us. You always model the kind of learning we want for our kids, and inspire us to think more deeply about our work.

      All the best in 2014!

  2. Thank you for the inviting me to participate and connecting northern bloggers, Donna! I will check back in on responses ahead and see what I can do for my own… in the name of joy, fun and networking 🙂 Best wishes for the season ’til then!

    1. It was a treat to point readers in your direction. I love your perspective on the public school system, the role of parents, and on learning. It has been a pleasure to meet you in person this year and I hope we can continue to collaborate in 2014.

      Thanks for taking the time to comment.

  3. Well I did leave a comment once already, but the comment gremlins pop up now and again and snatch them away, don’t they?

    Wanted to thank you for including me in this challenge. It was…is great fun and yes, a good reminder to venture over to the lighter side of life, now and again.

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