NEW: Poetry Teatime Cozies!!

Poetry Tea Cozies Collection Summer 2016

When staff member Tia Levings suggested we sell tea cozies as part of our Poetry Teatime website, I flinched. I didn’t want to be that company that sold a bunch of swag that took precious dollars away from curriculum purchases or piano lessons in frugal homeschool families.

Tia prevailed upon me to see what she and her mother (an expert seamstress with an industrial sewing business) concocted with our logos on them. My jaw dropped. These were hands-down the prettiest tea cozies I had ever seen. And the truth is: I had spent money to purchase them because they added whimsy and warmth to our pots of tea. That’s when I realized you might like the same opportunity!

Our tea cozies are

  • Custom-designed for Poetry Teatime.
  • 100% cotton with a particularly powerful thin batting that will keep your pot of tea warm up to an hour.
  • Made with fabrics that have been hand-selected to go with summer! Nancy Graham (author of the Poetry Teatime Companion) and Jeannette Hall (Social Media Fairy) gave each one a poetic name related to the fabric patterns.

I’m excited to introduce the perfect companion to tea: Brave Writer’s Poetry Teatime Tea Cozies, Summer 2016 Collection. We have limited stock. When we run out, we’re out! Grab them while they persist. They might make a wonderful gift for your new-to-teatime friends, paired with our poetry anthology Poetry Teatime Companion.

Introducing

Poetry Teatime Cozy

Bloomfall
Put down your gardening shears, take up your journal, breathe in the aroma of a hot pot of tea, and give thanks for plants, without which no blossoms, no food—and worst of all!—no tea. The brilliant wordsmith and poet, Gerard Manley Hopkins, coined the word we’ve adopted to name this floral tea cozy.

Poetry Teatime Cozy

 

The Runcible
Introduce a note of whimsy to your tea party with this bright and cheeky cozy, named for the word Edward Lear coined but neglected to define. The world is as big as your imagination.

Poetry Teatime Cozy

 

Zizzer-Zazzer-Zuzz
Inspired by the whimsical, made-up language of Dr. Seuss’s jazzamataz pizzazz, this cozy zigzags, zips, and zings with bright zany color.

 

 

If your table needs a boost of fun, or your teapots need a snug place to stay warm while you read your poems aloud, we humbly offer you our tea cozies to fill the bill!

Grab Your Tea Cozy Here!


Tailor-Made Homeschool

The Homeschool Alliance
Plan your upcoming school year with The Homeschool Alliance!

No more “One-Size Fits All” homeschool programs. During the month of July we’ll create a tailor-made routine that fits you and your family.

Join in July and

  • receive guidance from a veteran homeschool coach (me!)
  • learn how to apply your educational philosophy to your routine
  • create a workable plan you can actually carry out
  • maximize your strengths and gifts
  • capitalize on each child’s individuality, natural aptitudes, and passions
  • gain the confidence to ease up, to retool, and to adapt

Take advantage of my support and input as you work through materials designed to help you know your family better, and to plan concrete practices and projects that will be good for all of you. And it’s all done in a safe space where you are encouraged to take risks.

You can cancel any time!

Sign up now for The Homeschool Alliance to make progress in your homeschool all year. It’s $24.95 a month or sign up for a year for $179.00 and save $10.00 per month on the cost!

The Homeschool Alliance


Friday Freewrite: Dear Future Self

Friday Freewrite: Note to My Future Self

Write a note to your future self then seal it in an envelope. Put a date on the envelope (it can be in one week, three months, a year, or whenever you choose!) then open it on that date and read it. Then if you’d like, write a note back to your past self. :)

New to freewriting? Check out our online guide.


Meet Peter Elbow!

Meet Dr. Peter Elbow

[This post contains affiliate links. Thank you for supporting Brave Writer!]

My love affair with Dr. Peter Elbow started in the mid 1980s. My mother, a professional author, handed me his book Writing with Power as one of her chief sources of writing inspiration.

I got midway through the first chapter and my margin notes said things like, “Wait, that’s what I do!” and “I never realized other people wrote this way, too!”

Writing with Power put my writing life into words and identified the processes that came naturally to me. Even more, Peter Elbow gave me new ideas to test and new methods to aid me in expanding and exploring my mind life in writing. Writing with Power popularized the term “freewriting” and Peter’s work cascaded into a revolution of writing practices at all levels of the school system in the 1980s-1990s.

Over the ensuing decades, I’ve studied his writings eagerly adding to my “Elbow book shelf.” In 2000, after I published The Writer’s Jungle, I packed up the three ring binder and shipped it to Peter without pausing to consider the audacity of that move. Peter served as the head of the writing department as a professor at University of Massachusetts, Amherst. I told him how his work had inspired me and shaped what I teach in Brave Writer. I thanked him for his ground-breaking ideas and the influence they had on me.

I never expected to hear back.

A month later, an email arrived from Peter! Imagine my shock (and anxiety). What if he thought I was a hack? Instead, the warm voice I had come to know in his books greeted me immediately. Peter thanked me for the manual and told me he was glad I was taking his ideas to the homeschooling market since he had no access to home educators. He liked what I had written. Satisfaction and a big confidence boost came along for the ride.

A few years later, Peter’s secretary contacted me and invited me to hear Peter speak at Miami of Ohio University. I couldn’t believe he even remembered who I was! I attended a writing workshop for professors as Peter’s guest, was seated in the front row, and got to spend time talking with Peter before and after the seminar.

We’ve since had a few email exchanges, including a recent one where I praised Vernacular Eloquence. The pattern had repeated itself. As I read his latest book, I discovered that what we do in Brave Writer is exactly what his writing theories set out to assert—only in this case, we were successfully practicing the principles long before he had completed his 7 year magnum opus! All I could think was how glad he’d be to know that his deepest, most sacred beliefs about writing and process and reader response were most effectively experienced in the home, not school. I couldn’t wait to tell him!

When I realized that I would be traveling to Seattle (where Peter and his wife, Cami, now live), I let him know. Peter invited me to lunch. Cindy and I joined him at his lovely home and followed the meal with a Periscope (live video) where he and I freely dialogued about our shared writing values and strategies. It is not an overstatement to say that spending time with Peter is on par with meeting Bono in person.

For me, Peter is my writing “rock star” and I feel privileged to know him and call him my friend! We played off one another, I learned more from him, he seemed genuinely interested in what we are doing in Brave Writer, and we laughed and laughed.

His most gratifying comment to me came after we turned off the camera.

Peter said, “I meant to say this while we were filming but we kept moving forward. You articulate many of my ideas even better than I have!”

I can now die happy.

Dr. Peter Elbow is 80 years old. His commitment to the writing process and to gently holding a writer’s self-expression while giving meaningful carefully worded responses to that writing is inspiring.

With this introduction, I give you my writing guru, Dr. Peter Elbow. (Yes, I gush, blush, and fawn like a fangirl.)

May you find new inspiration for how to support your children in becoming free, brave writers.

The conversation with Dr. Peter Elbow was recorded on Periscope.


Playing What They are Learning

"Dutch Masters" in the studio

Brave Writer mom Lise (Free to Be a Child) writes:

Yesterday “Vermeer” and “Rembrandt” were at work in the studio, taking turns sitting for portraits by the other. L has been listening to a series of books about artists (Art for Children), and is particularly interested in Dutch artists, as she is part Dutch. So those names stuck with her.

She spent the day in her Dutch-inspired costume, and when S arrived, he joined her for some klompen (Dutch clogging) dancing.

Naturally, when they later decided to paint, they took on the names of Dutch artists.

"Dutch Masters" in the studio

Playing what we’re learning is common here, a Reggio-inspired early childhood program in my home (where I also unschool my daughter). But becoming artists who paint portraits of each other is clearly influenced by some of Julie’s scopes, which inspired me to incorporate a morning basket, including lots of art appreciation.

:-) Lise

Learn more about art appreciation in your homeschool:

Check out Brave Writer’s Art Appreciation Workshop!