We’ve been plagued by squirrels dancing in our ceilings for several seasons now. Back in April it seemed as if we had finally confounded them when Lance pruned the tree that gave them clear access. But after a few weeks they figured out that they could climb right up the back staircase that leads straight up to the 3rd floor and onto the roof. And then, as if to punish our efforts, they colonized the ceiling in even larger numbers. Louder, larger numbers.
It’s not just that they’re loud. It’s the nature of the noise. Like a thousand fingernails scraping against a blackboard.
At last, our landlord has found someone to deal with the issue. He’s assembled his crew and erected scaffolding all around the building. Vincent loves all the activity, and calls the scaffolding “The Clocktower”, which I love, and talks about climbing up the tall ladders, which I don’t.
I know I have overprotective tendencies when it comes to Vincent, but I think they’re called for: last week he got outside by tearing through the screen door. It’s no wonder his birth is the guiding force behind Hunger All Inside.
Meanwhile, Aidan is 6 months old today, babbling a blue streak. His eczema is under control, though not gone entirely. His face and scalp especially require daily treatments. But we can at last see and feel his beautiful baby face clear.
I first learned of The Dzanc Creative Writing Sessions through Karen Weyant’s blog. I haven’t yet taken advantage of this truly affordable service, but I plan to this summer. They have fantastic writers on their roster, and even I can find some way to pay $30 for two hours of mentoring. And what’s more, that teeny tuition goes toward another great program:
The program is being offered at an extremely low rate — many of the instructing authors volunteering their time to Dzanc do similar work as freelancers and charge much greater rates than are being offered here through the DCWS. Other workshops and writing programs charge a lump sum of several hundred dollars up front. Not only does the DCWS allow you to control and target your expenses, but 100% of the money brought in by Dzanc by our DCWS goes to supporting the writing programs we run for students grades 4-12. These additional programs — currently being run nationally by Dzanc — are offered free of charge to students who would not otherwise be able to afford and experience these sort of writing programs.
I’d like to sign up immediately, but my computer mishap has knocked my budget for a very large loop. (No, it’s not back yet, but I’m crossing my fingers for today.) But I’m really excited about it, and can see myself signing up on a semi-regular basis in the future. I don’t have a writing group, and this is a great way to get varied feedback. If you haven’t already, you should absolutely check it out!
My husband accuses me of burying the important news at the bottom of my posts. I don’t think so. But I’m now working for Tupelo Press. I’m only mentioning this because Tupelo Press is one of my favorite small presses, and I’ve often talked about them or their books on the blog in the past, and I will continue to do so, and for the same reasons: because I love them. As my friends Ann and Michael, who work for Random House, say over at their blog, Books on the Nightstand, this blog is my own personal blog, and in no way affiliated with Tupelo Press. Just so you know.