You Give Me Hope

The very first time I posted on this blog, I wrote that I believe in everyday heroes. I stand by that post. But it needs to be expanded. Because I believe in a world where all people are equal, where leaders work for the greater good, and where all people are kind and care for one another. Obviously, that’s not reality today. Because we aren’t there yet, many people think I’m too simple or optimist or even blind to reality. Perhaps. But here are the reasons I believe in humanity. You give me hope. Resilient Humans are the most resilient and adaptable species on the planet. Many of us experience difficulties, horrible setbacks, and epic tragedies. Yet, most of us recover from those things. It’s not that we ignore what happened, but we adapt. We move forward. There are many famous people who are examples of resilience. Oprah Winfrey, J. K. Rowling, and Stephen King are on the list but there are millions more. People whose rise above their circumstances didn’t raise them to mega-star heights. They survived. They kept on keeping on and became heroes for their family and their neighbors and sometimes for themselves. Persistent One of the […]

Score Your Reading Super Powers

As readers, you have super powers. You have a large vocabulary and a diverse knowledge of random facts. Readers like you can talk about a wide range of topics, some nerdier than others. And because you read a lot, you’ve developed specialized talents. How many do you have? Score your reading super powers with this fun quiz. The Reading Super Powers Quiz Give you 1 point for each one of these you do. You have reading super powers if you… Read for Fun. Read for Information. See the story unfolding like a movie in your head. Hear the story characters speaking. Create a mental soundtrack to the books you read. Remember titles, authors, and characters. Talk about books you’ve read. Read super fast and can still retell intricate details of the plot. Are a super slow reader and savor every word. Ignore everyone and everything else while reading. Figure out Who Dun It in the first couple of chapters. Remember bits of text, word-for-word, long after you’ve finished the book. Can read a book without cracking its spine. Read multiple books at a time. Read a favorite book more than five times. Remember where you left off in a book […]

Wife, Mother, Patriot, and Revolutionary War Spy

She was a wife, mother, patriot, and Revolutionary War spy. The only female in George Washington’s Culper Spy Ring (aka Setauket Spy Ring), Anna Smith Strong, had an ingenious way to send messages under the noses of the British… her laundry. The British Take New York City The American Revolutionary War had been raging for six months. In late August 1776 under General William Howe, a force of 30,000 British Regulars, 10 ships of line, 20 frigates, and 170 transports engaged George Washington’s troops at the Battle of Brooklyn.   The British outflanked George Washington’s Continental Army. But General Howe did not storm the redoubts at Brooklyn Heights. That allowed Washington and his troops to retreat to Manhattan by boat. The Americans suffered 1,000 casualties to the British loss of only 400 men. On September 15th, the British occupied New York City. This gave the British control of the Hudson River. The river split the rebellious colonies in half geographically.  Shortly after that British authorities caught Nathan Hale. They caught Hale on his way back to his regiment after gathering information behind the British lines. They hanged Hale in New York City, a warning for all spies. The Continental Army’s […]