Friday, August 13, 2010

9. Learn the lyrics and chords for 8 praise and worship songs

Not much to say about this one.  I've been around praise songs all of my life.  Many of the songs that I looked at while I was searching for songs to learn have been part of my life as long as the ABC song.  Thanks Mom and Dad!

I enjoyed sitting in front of the computer with the guitar reliving many of the songs from camp, including The Building Block, which was I remember being played from when I was 5 all the way through high school.

Here are a few beauties of the girls when they were younger from the archives.

I used to play a lot to the girls when they were really young.  I still play to them each night when Melissa and I sing their songs to them.

Charlie was hilarious taking this picture.  He kept looking at me then back at Melissa with this big smile.

This morning Charlie really liked hearing me practice.  When the girls were young I played to them a lot.  Charlie hasn't gotten the same treatment.  It was nice to see his reaction to the music.
I kept track of the songs on the list here to be able to go back to when I needed to practice.  I don't have them all completely memorized, but I have them down good enough that just a quick look at the song and I have it all down.  I'd say it is good enough to be able to count this goal done!

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

27. Write a letter to an editor that makes it into the publication

This goal ranks up there with memorizing a poem.  This is another goal that I saw on someone else's list and thought it would be a good one.  It turned out to be a ton of work, and most of it never really mattered.

I gave up trying to write TIME magazine. Every week from August 2009 through May 2010 I read the magazine and submitted a letter to them about something that struck a chord with me.  Each week I would check the editorials to see if my submission was accepted.  It never was.  I would read the submissions that were used and use them as my guide for types of things to look for.  That didn't help.  The one thing that I can say is that I read a lot of great stories that I wouldn't have read if it wasn't for this goal.  I learned to critically write a response to someone else's writing. This skill came in handy when I was teaching critical thinking to my kids and how to read critically. I was also asked to submit writing related to articles that I had read during my classes I am taking.  Since I was in the habit of doing this weekly already it made it a pretty easy task. 

I decided if I didn't make it into TIME by the end of the school year I would give up on TIME (something suggested by many to do early in my attempts) and would look for something less lofty.  It surely would have been cool to make it into such a large publication, but I just had to adjust my sights. 

It only took one time to make it into The Beacon News (or The Be Confused as Mr. Eckburg used to refer to it as).  There were a few ideas I thought about writing about, but I just never got around to it.  After reading a few submissions in the editorials page I found that you don't have to write about an article in the paper at all.  It just needs to relate to something in the reading area. I decided to write a short letter about the roads in Aurora.  It was definitely not my best writing or the most important letter written to them, but it was something to appease the goal.

The letter can be found here. Don't expect much when you read it. My motivation was that Aurora is trying very hard to make the downtown area prettier. The street lights are being re-done into an older architecture style.  They are giving huge tax breaks to anyone willing to open up shop down there.  It just seemed that if they did a total restyling of the area including the streets it would possibly help to revitalize the area. It also seemed to me that if the roads are already surfaced with bricks, why not just work with what is already in place.

This goal is done.  I can say that I am probably done writing in to publications about their content.