Elmhurst Public Library fights back against unclear book design
This will be one of my first projects once back to school settles down.
Magical Paths Begging To Be Walked
Roads and paths pervade our literature, poetry, artwork, linguistic expressions and music. Even photographers can’t keep their eyes (and lenses) off of a beautiful road or path, which is why we collected this list of 28 amazing photos of paths.
Paths like these have a powerful grip on the human imagination – they can bring adventure, promise and change or solitude, peace and calm. There’s nothing like a walk down a beautiful path to clear your head – or to fill it with ideas!
I’ll leave you with an excellent quote from J. R. R. Tolkien’s works while you enjoy these images; “It’s a dangerous business, Frodo, going out your door. You step onto the road, and if you don’t keep your feet, there’s no knowing where you might be swept off to.“
- Autumn In The White Carpathians : Janek Sedlar
- Rhododendron Laden Path, Mount Rogers, Virginia, USA: Robert Ziegenfuss
- Spring In Hallerbos Forest, Belgium: Kilian Schönberger
- Autumn Path In Kyoto, Japan: Takahiro Bessho
- Autumn Path: Lars Van Der Goor
- Bamboo Path In Kyoto, Japan: Yuya Horikawa
- Hitachi Seaside Park Path In Japan: nipomen2
- Dark Hedges In Ireland: Stephen Emerson
- Winter Forest Path, Czech Republic: Jan Machata
- Path Under Blooming Trees In Spring: Emanuel Costinas
So pretty, however with my luck I would show up at the wrong time of year and the path would be unrecognizable :-)
As summer is winding down I am getting fired up for another school year, despite the uncertainty because of the current lockout/strike situation in my province. This year in addition to being the school librarian and teaching an English 9 and Mentorship class I also get to create and teach a brand new course called Maker 7. The concept is not new at all, but bringing it into the classroom and making an actual course out of it is a fairly novel concept. As such, I am going to focus much of the course on creativity, and the attitudes and skills needed for effective making (openness, flexibility, grit, perseverance, adaptability, critical thinking, empathy, desire to create change, confidence, etc.)
Maker 7 ideas
Each student has a Creativity Folder or Duotang
Each class begins with a creativity sponge (ex:brainstorm as many creative uses as you can for a chair, ladder, paper cup, clothes peg, piece of Saran Wrap, etc)
Examine design evolution (ex: toothbrush, vehicles, shoes)
Some fun teamwork challenges (ex: using only string to move, stack 10 Solo cups into a pyramid)
Intro work on quizzes to see skills, knowledge, interests…
Encourage students to identify as leaders in an area of strength
Gain confidence and competence in “doing it yourself”
Explore crafts, electronics, mechanical engineering, shop, arts, computers, tinkering, etc.
Learn and practice basic design theory—focus on design thinking
Connect with makers in the community
Levels of design: copy, adapt, create for self, create for others, share and teach
Final project that demonstrates learning, growth, reflection, grit…to present at Maker Faire
Communal idea boards
Regular low stakes (nearly no fail) creativity/innovation practice (ex: jujubes and toothpicks)
30 day challenge
West Coast Trail pics from Keith Hind.
Day 2 took us from Cullite to Cribs Creek (km 58 to km 42). Avtar and Josh set out around 6:30 am with the rest of us planning to follow at about 8am, but we were a bit slow to pack up and didn’t leave until 8:45. This was fine, but it meant we’d never catch up to the two of them and therefore wouldn’t see them again until we reached the camp. This day had additional challenges, because it was the day we had a cable car break on us at Walbran Creek! Emily and I went across first, then when Keegan and Julie were crossing it sounded a bit weird and then stopped moving about 10ft from the platform. Keith and Claudia saw that the rope had jumped the wheel, so they watched as we tried to figure out a way to get the car to move those last 10ft. Thankfully Keegan is strong and with all of us using our full strength (and some adrenaline kicking in) we manages to get them safely to the platform, literally inch by inch. Keegan and Claudia had to then wade across the creek to join us so it definitely added time to our day. Not too long after though we reached Bonila Point where we stopped for lunch and I washed up at the waterfall :-). When we reached Cribs Creek Avtar was particularly excited to see us, and we were happy to have a fire to sit around and a great beach spot picked out for our tents.
Day 3 was Cribs Creek to Tsusiat Falls (km 42- km 25). This was a great camp area with a bathroom with a view and a waterfall/ swimming pool so we all had a chance to freshen up! We did a combination of inland and beach treks this day and broke off into a number of pairings and groupings. We met up at Nitinat Narrows where much of our group feasted on the fresh crab and fish ($25 plate). Josh, Claudia and I headed off first because my knee was getting quite sore so I knew I’d be slower. Thankfully when we hit the beach I was able to ramp things up! This was also where we go to go through the archway at Tsusiat Point. We were shocked that all 8 of us made the tides here, but it made for an extra memorable stretch for the last two to pass! We enjoyed some Tequila at Camp around the fire that night.
Day 4 was our day to finish the trek taking us from 25-0! We left at 6:30am and broke into pairs and groups. Josh and Keegan were injury free so they went at top speed and arrived at the end by 1:15. The girls stuck together, periodically also walking with Keith and Avtar, and made it to the end around 4pm, and then Keith and Avtar arrived just after 5 (they had stopped at the lighthouse to see the helicopter and sea lions). We walked down to the campground to find out that pizza was on its way thanks to Josh! We enjoyed two slices each on the beach and took a group picture to celebrate our trip.
In total I fell off 1 log ( early on Day 2, possibly where I first hurt my knee) and fell down on at least 3 plank boardwalks. Emily took the muddiest fall, Keith took the hardest fall (on an ocean boulder, landing on his tailbone) and Avtar may have escaped without any slips! The last morning I woke up with crazily puffy eyes, and the same thing happened to Claudia. A less extreme version happened to Julie and Emily as well so the campsite wasn’t quite so pretty our last day! Our bus wasn’t until 1pm so we all got to shower, and the boys left at 10:30 getting breakfast before taking a boat back to Port Renfrew. We took a very bumpy bus ride, stopping in Lake Cowichan to pee and buy devour a bunch of junk food, then arriving in Port Renfrew to rush to the ferry where all 8 of us managed to get on the 7 ferry. I happily ate a White Spot Burger and yam fries and some of the gang enjoyed wine from water bottles! I was dropped off at home around 12:40 am after a car ride filled mainly with music and laughter.
It was a really relaxing, peaceful, strenuous, fun, adventurous journey and I look forward to hanging out with all of the gang again soon.
One of my longest standing bucket list items has been completed! Along with 7 other members of HimingAddiction.ca I completed the West Coast Trail July 14-17th! The actual trip was a bit longer thanks to a 4.5 hour drive to the ferry, a 1.5 hour ferry and another 2 hours drive to the trailhead, plus mandatory orientation and limited boat and bus times, so I was actually gone from the 13th to the wee hours of the 20th.
The trip was expertly planned by the leader of Hiking Addiction, Josh Hoggan. I certainly didn’t think we’d keep to the schedule and yet we did, nearly to a T! All of the time spent planning made the trip possible for those of us who simply couldn’t have done it if someone hadn’t have done all the advance leg work. Three of the eight of us had the WCT on our bucket lists, so major kudos to Josh for helping us achieve this goal.
The trip was fantastic not because of the trail experience but because of the group dynamic. I’m a quiet introvert at heart and yet I felt included throughout even when I wandered off for little bits of solitude. We rotated hiking partners with very little discussion, so it just naturally happened that we all had a chance to hike with each other and therefore get to know each other a little better (most of us were only well acquainted with 1-2 others in the group). Everyone helped out at camp so we shared water duties, gathering firewood, boiling water, setting up and taking down tents, etc. We all kept positive spirits throughout (with expected dips due to exhaustion of course) and I know that we’ll share this bond for life.
The actual trek is generally completed in 6 nights, 7 days, but we did it in 3 nights, 3.5-4 days so we pushed it pretty hard. On Day 1 we started at the South end, also known as the toughest, boarding a little boat shuttle at about 8:20 am on the Monday. We hiked with only short breaks (other than lunch, and the length of that break depended on who you were hiking with) and ended up at Cullite Creek around 8:30pm. (Km75-km58). When the group I was with reached the Cullite pull carts we were pretty close to breaking. I climbed the ladder to look across since we didn’t know which side of the creek the campground was on. When I saw ladders stretching up as high as the eye can see I climbed back down and said, “It’s nothing but ladders. I don’t care which side the campground is actually on. I’m fucking camping here!” Luckily we then saw that the campground was on the South side, so a few more minutes of relatively flat ground and we’d arrived. Being late, there was little room in the bear lockers and limited space for our tents so we set up under a Rock Cliff and squished into 1 less tent than planned. I joined Keegan and Keith in their tent, and Claudia joined Emily and Julie. It was a bit cramped, but we made it work. The other problem was that the waves were SO loud that some of us had trouble sleeping despite how tired we were. All in all it worked out to a gruelling start to the trip, but we also felt proud of how far we’d made it!
Some more food for thought regarding introverts and extroverts.