7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #101: Featuring Jeremy Hiebert

h1 February 8th, 2009 by Eisha and Jules

Through Ice

EncasedJules: What a pleasure it is to feature Jeremy Hiebert today. Our frequent kicks-listers will recognize Jeremy as a Sunday regular. Lucky for us, he stumbled upon our blog during some point last year, I believe it was, while looking for some books for his children (one of our readers told me recently, “Y’all seem to have a gift for bringing in regular readers who’ve just wandered by and smelled the cinnamon buns baking,” which is probably my favorite blog compliment of all, as it involves dessert, for one thing.) And, since then, Jeremy’s been here just about every Sunday to share his weekly kicks — usually having to do with his beautiful family, photography, music, friends, and the other simple joys of life. As observant kickers know, on occasion Jeremy has shared some Flickr or blog links with us, pointing us in the direction of some of his photography — always quietly and modestly so, too. And I know I’m not the only one who’s noticed: These are humdingers, these photographs. Jeremy has an eye, as we photography laity say. His skill with the camera is impressive. He seems to be seeping with talent, whether it’s photos of his young children or horses or orchards or other nature shots.

So, it’s particularly exciting that Jeremy agreed to a feature of his photography—especially since he’s such a genuinely friendly, interesting person, as you regular kickers know, and it’s always good to shine a spotlight on the good people of the world—and we’re so glad he’s here. (And I know he’s not here to plug his blog, but I will say that it’s a wonderful place to visit and that he’s also written beautiful posts about his children that have damn near made me cry.) Opening the post this morning is Through Ice: “No idea why {those} bubbles got together, but I’m glad they did…if only for awhile,” Jeremy said. And pictured under that is Encased. “Water drips off our roof onto a bed of lavender during the day, then freezes as it cools off in the evening.” Here’s a bit more from Jeremy (who also celebrated a birthday this week, and I hope I don’t embarrass him by saying that), and then kick back and treat yourself to his utterly beguiling ice-themed photographs. You can click on each image to be taken directly to his Flickr link.

I don’t really consider myself a photographer in that artsy sort of way. When Jules asked me if I’d share some photos with the 7-Imp crew, I drew a blank. 7-Imp is for amazing art and inspiring authors, not family snapshots! But she talked me into it, and I was honored. We agreed that we’d choose ten photos to decorate this week’s kicks. Sounds easy, right?

It was not at all easy. I dug through hundreds of photos in my Flickr sets and settled on five themes with ten photos in each, then wimped out and made Jules choose one. I was secretly pleased with her selection, because I’ve been somewhat obsessed with taking photos of ice this winter. Also, Little Willow mentioned last week in a comment: “I’ve never skated (or walked, or done anything) upon ice!” For someone like me who grew up in Canada, spending at least a third of each year skating, slipping, and sliding on the stuff, that seemed amazing.

Ice is considered a nuisance, because it makes driving so dangerous, but I’ve grown to love it for its inherent beauty. That beauty is so deliciously random, forming accidentally in infinite ways. Each formation is like a simulation run from an equation, using nothing but gravity, temperature, wind, and water. What could be more elemental?

In case anyone is curious about the photogeekery, I usually shoot with a Canon 30D DSLR. Most of the ice photos were taken with my all-purpose 28-105mm lens, which works pretty good for macros. I also enjoy shooting film with an older Minolta X-700, and my everyday camera is a beat-up Canon S2 IS point ‘n shoot, which I used for {the photo opening this post}. I usually take photos close to home in Summerland, in British Columbia’s Okanagan Valley. It’s beautiful here, but there’s beauty everywhere. That’s what I love about photography — it trains me to see beauty.

Thanks to Jules and Eisha for giving me my first gallery. I’m a huge fan of Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast, and especially the community of thankfulness that forms around all of our 7-Kicks each week…so this was really too fun to pass up.


Pointy: “We live in an old house without eaves troughs, creating great icicles.
I like the stripes in these ones, like crystal carrots.”


Layers: “Jumbled chunks with interesting patterns and layers, now mostly melted.”


Fangs: “Not so scary, really. Our toddler loves to break these off and lick them.”

Trout Creek

Trout Creek: “Neat patterns where the bubbly creek rushes below a shelf of ice.”


Flames: “A fringe of delicate icicles underneath a dock on the lake,
formed by waves splashing up and freezing, as it drips back down.”


Curves-discs: “Wave action in the lake makes for some interesting patterns along the shore — I like the contrasting shapes.”


Forest: “I loved the luminescence of this, with the blue ‘trunks’ dark and shaded and the ‘leaves’ above, radiant with light.”


Pancakes: “I wish you could hear the sound made by a million of these quietly clinking and clicking, as they slowly spin and collide.”

Aren’t those captivating? Many thanks to Jeremy for sharing this morning!

Oh, and for anyone new, the 7-kicks posts are our weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. Absolutely anyone, of course, is welcome to list kicks — even if, or especially if, you’ve never done so before.

* * * Jules’ kicks * * *

1). Jeremy’s photographs. Numero uno.

2). Someone from School Library Media Activities Monthly contacted me a while ago about permission to use a photo of Tricia Tusa from the interview I did with her in June of last year. I responded to her, and this week — a good while after those emails — I got a copy of the February 2009 issue of the magazine with that photo. But they didn’t just use that photo with 7-Imp’s (and Tricia’s) permission; they included the URL to the interview with a note about how it is filled with photos of her and her studio and her illustrations.

It’s a kick to me to see the world of blogs and the world of print library resources unite. Doesn’t happen often.

3). The vegetable cobbler I made this week.

4). The two doves on our back deck on Monday morning. They sat there for a long while.

5). This star-studded performance from the mind of author/illustrator Jarrett J. Krosoczka, which I’m sure 99% of you all have seen, but it’s a hoot. Adam Rex’s angst-ridden, under-ten-seconds cameo is my favorite part (hey, I just mentioned him and I’m a blogger. Maybe that will ease some of his worries). Second favorite part: Tony DiTerlizzi’s human-haired paint brush:

6). The interview with Elisa Kleven at Paper Tigers. When I read her answer about the importance of imaginary adventures to a child’s development, I immediately wanted her to be President of All Schools in the Universe. Or something like that. She’s just so wise.

7). Part A. — A trip to an arts-and-crafts store this week to get my art-crazed four-year-old daughter a big bunch ‘o’ supplies for creating — papers, tissue paper, fabrics, stickers, glitter glue, etc.

Part B. — On the way there, as she was telling me how much she loves to make art, I told her that her Uncle Donnie, whom she never got to meet, was a very talented artist when he was alive. And, afterwards, she said with great interest, “tell me what else he was good at.”

Part C. — That she begins every sentence anymore with “ANYway, actually…”

BONUSES: The very Spring-like weather Tennessee is having right now. A thoughtful surprise from Vivienne Flesher in the mail. Having a friend over for dinner on his birthday. And the results of MotherReader’s hard work. Check it out (click on the image):

* * * eisha’s kicks * * *

1* Aw, man. I love me some good photography, and these pics are amazing. Nice, Jeremy, very nice indeed.

2* Jules, that Jarrett J. Krosoczka video is fabulous. I think maybe Tomie dePaola as Mr. Miyagi is my favorite part. Something about the way he holds that brush in his teeth…

3* Discussions are underway in my Cybils panel. It’s my favorite part of this process – talking about great books with smart, opinionated, enthusiastic people.

4* My co-worker and I got to put up another mini-exhibit at work. This one is all about Barack Obama. Since his election is so historically significant, we have a new collection of materials from his campaign, election and inauguration, which we’re displaying in honor of Black History Month. It’s neat thinking about what future historians will have to say when they look back at this moment, you know?

5* The Amazing Screw-On Head. Have you seen it? It’s a pilot for an animated series based on a Mike Mignola (as in Hellboy) comic book that came out a couple of years ago. People, it is HILARIOUS. You can watch the whole thing here, but it’s 22 minutes long, so maybe read everyone else’s kicks first:6* My upstairs neighbors just introduced me to The Venture Bros., for even more animated snarkiness.

7* Did I mention that I got to see Equus on Broadway when I went to NYC last weekend? ‘Cause I did.

* * * * * * *

So, how ’bout ya’ll? Anything kicky happen to you this week you’d like to share? We’d love to hear about it.

28 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #101: Featuring Jeremy Hiebert”

  1. Ladies: THANK YOU for asking Jeremy to play along. Splendid choice.

    I think one of my kicks is Jeremy’s life. So first of all: thank you, Jeremy, for being so brave to share yourself with us. What a gorgeous family, what a lucky person to live where there are expanses and trees and silence. I am not that sure about the ice, but the pictures are gorgeous and this year I proudly own little crampons to put on over my shoes so I’m not slipping (it’s 10 degrees here in Glasgow.). I wish I could at least slip gracefully; all of my Canadian friends can skate, and I have always been so jealous. Someday, someday, someday I will learn…

    My kicks this week are 1.) discovering The Middleman and watching Tivo’d episodes back to back, and learning that the DVD set comes out this summer, 2.) being almost done with my new website (thanks to Little Willow) 3.) being almost finished with my WIP, but allowing myself more leeway to decide when it’s done, so I can stop breaking out in hives about it, 4.) feeling like I’ve come unstuck — almost — form the midwinter blahs.

    5.) And watching Jeremy’s son and his grandfather play the harp together. I’d say they’re lucky, but I’m just going to go right out on that limb and say they’re blessed. Thanks again, chicas, for this glimpse into another beautiful artistic world.

  2. So I guess I’m up early today and full of thankfulness! That Krosoczka video is so hilarious! Brilliant, really. As is the Kidlitosphere Central site, which I am thrilled to see go live. Kudos to you Jules for getting linked in SLMAM for your Tusa interview. Not at all surprising though! And thanks for featuring Jeremy and his wonderful photos today. His ice work makes me wish we weren’t in a warm spell this weekend. I want to rush out and look for icicles but I think they all melted yesterday.

    My kicks:

    1. Reading Thomas Merton’s New Seeds of Contemplation this week. “Deep” as we used to say.
    2. Chicken salad sandwiches on GF toast, with pickles and baby lettuce.
    3 The gluten free food gift basket sent to me this week by a friend of the family. Organic GF Roasted Pepper and Tomato Soup. Orgainic Spicy Shiitake & Vegetable Soup. Organic Crystallized Ginger bits from the mountains of Yongding, China. Baked, Dried Mangos. Cinnamon Vanilla Almonds. Yum!
    4. I think I’m completely caught up on reading my bloglines backlog. I’ve actually had time to comment some!
    5. Found snowdrops blooming in my yard this week.
    6. My oldest son gets up early to shovel snow, take out the trash, make the little boy’s lunches and breakfast. He’s such a fine young man!
    7. I got review copies of After Gandhi by Anne Sibley O’Brien (http://www.charlesbridge.com/productdetails.cfm?PC=5111) and My People by Charles R. Smith Jr. (http://books.simonandschuster.com/My-People/Langston-Hughes/9781416935407) in the mail this week. So thrilled!

  3. Biggest kick this week? My 70th birthday. How DID I get to be this old?


  4. Wow. Jeremy’s ice photos are amazing! My faves are the crystal carrots, pancakes, and the forest. Nature is miraculous — makes me wonder what else I’m missing by not looking closer.

    Eisha, you saw Equus? and you did an Obama exhibit? Lucky lucky duck!

    Jules, vegetable cobbler? Sounds intriguing. And congrats on the mention in the SLMAM — very exciting! Need to go read the Elisa interview.

    Happy Birthday, Jane!!


    1. The Jarrett video. My fave parts: Blue Rose Girls and Tomie — though the whole thing is brilliant.

    2. Japanese food last night: shrimp tempura and salmon teriyaki.

    3. Finally started reading Dreams From My Father. What a brilliant mind.

    4. Sara invited me to the DC Kidlit Book Club meeting last week — got to meet Mother Reader! Kidlitosphere Central is amazing. Passionate discussion about the ALA YMA winners.

    5. Renee Coates, a Maui artist whose work I featured recently, offered to sponsor a giveaway on my blog — the prize is a signed, limited edition print of the winner’s choosing: http://jamarattigan.livejournal.com/236014.html.

    6. Some warm temps this weekend — a nice break from biting cold.

    7. Received a really nice email from a debut author about how happy my book release soup made her. In small ways, touching people one by one is part of the joy of blogging.

    Have a good week, everyone.

  5. Oh, to be that good of a photographer, amazing photos, an inspiration to keep working at the craft. Love the pancakes. Thank you for sharing!

    Jules, I am cracking up at the expedition to the store for arts and crafts supplies. What toddlers deem as important conversation and their delivery makes me smile.
    Eisha, so does that mean you saw Harry Potter in the buff?
    Cloudscome, I am glad you are on the mend.

    My kicks:
    1. Got to use skype with granddaughter for dirst time last night. Hilarious.
    2. The poem “Frost Fall” and “The Sky” by two 5th grade boys. You would never guess that they wrote them.
    3. Gorgeous, warm weather this past week.
    4. Heading to Denver for a 4 day thinking conference in a few hours.
    5. Ratatouille turned out wonderful last night.
    Short list this week. Have a great one.

  6. Jeremy, these photographs are excellent. I absolutely love them. The depth of field in “Flames” really makes them pop. Have you thought about converting some to B&W?

    1) The ASL video for my Grad school application is finally done, in a FedEx envelop, and on it’s way to D.C. (I am shaking my hands in the air doing the Deaf clap)

    2) Yesterday hiking at Frozen Head State Park, which unlike where Jeremy lives, is sans ice.

    3) Next week I will take the GRE. Since you are all word-nerds, there is no denying that, please use your ESP to help me.

    4) Art Show Reception was a success! How do I measure success: by stupid comments. Friday night there were none! In the past: “I have taken a photo like that.” “Why are your photographs so expensive?” “I hate digital photography.” “I just don’t buy art.” Grr!

    5) I have a radio interview tmw with WUOT. I will be reading an essay I wrote in regards to why NPR is important to me. They are bringing a video camera??

    6) Jhumpa Lahiri’s novel on DVD.

    7) Maple marinated Tofu for dinner last night….YUM!

  7. I’m going to go backwards. Just for fun.

    Jeffrey, I will send GRE vibes your way. Only for the Math and Analytical Reasoning portion (do they still do that evil Analytical Reasoning stuff?), since I know you’ll SLAM the language part. And, ooh! ooh! I WANNA SEE YOUR submitted ASL video!….Congrats on a successful art show, too.

    Jone, in case people didn’t SEE Brandon’s and Dakotah’s great poems, I’m going to point them out, if anyone’s so inclined to read them: They’re here. I love it when you share their poems. But where is Claire? (sp? Clare? Can’t remember).

    Jama, for someone who was a vegetarian for ten years and is still mostly one (I’m going to lift Jeremy’s phrases for it: I’m a non-commital meat-eater or a poseur vegetarian, or—as my husband put it—I’m a Vegetarian With Recidivism Issues), it’s amazing how many vegetables I do NOT like and how picky I am about how they are cooked. So, to have found a vegetable cobbler recipe I liked is noteworthy. It was yum-good, though I think next time I’ll add some ricotta maybe.

    And, Jama, WORD TO KICK #7!

    Jane, happy 70! I think that’s exciting.

    cloudscome, I love Thomas Merton. I went through a kick of reading his books and some poetry about ten years ago, including the wonderful one you read, New Seeds of Contemplation. “…if you want to identify me, ask me not where I live, or what I like to eat, or how I comb my hair, but ask me what I am living for, in detail, and ask me what I think is keeping me from living fully for the thing I want to live for.” Ah.

    I’m glad your friends and family are still taking such good care of you.

    Tanita, I concur that Jeremy is greatly blessed. And, yeah, I think I ended up this week at your new web site before it was finished, but I can say that it looks fabulous so far. But are we surprised? It’s Little Willow at work.

  8. Gorgeous photos! Thanks for including the links for all 5 themes – while I love the ice photos(especially the delicate lavender icicle), it was fun to see what else Jeremy was torn between. And the photos of your family are beautiful!

    Jules, I can’t get my head around vegetable cobbler. It sounds like it could awesome. Will you share what was in it?
    Eisha, you have such a cool job!
    cloudscome – all the GF food sounds yummy!
    Jeffrey – maple marinated tofu?

    My kicks this week:
    1. Sleeping in today.
    2. Watching Man on Wire. The passion of that man was amazing to see!
    3. Lunch this week with a good friend.
    4. Reading and finishing Revolutionary Road. I didn’t know what to expect, and the writing just sucked me in to the story.
    5. A full day of errands accomplished yesterday.
    6. A trade with the BF – he put together my new dresser and I baked him chocolate chip cookies – made us both very happy.
    7. Finally saw “The IT Crowd” on IFC. It had been recommended by friends, and now its added to the DVR list. Funny, silly show.

    Have a great week!

  9. Cjare is around. She’s a 3rd grader. This is 5th…You will see her with Poetry Club entries, soon.

  10. In a hurry…packing…Clare is what I meant.

  11. I apologize for every bad word I’ve ever muttered about ice. It is sublime. What I like almost as much as Jeremy’s photographs are his words: “Each formation is like a simulation run from an equation, using nothing but gravity, temperature, wind, and water.”

    Jules, your art supply trip is a kick indeed. My daughter once claimed a sunporch for her craft room, and stuffed it full of beads and paper scraps and bent and broken things—and art, too, yes, lots and lots of art, and it was both the bane and the joy of my parenting her for awhile.

    Eisha, I saw Equus many years ago, and was completely taken in by it. But that was in a very small theater. I don’t know how I’d feel about it on Broadway. How was it?

    I’ve had a quiet week, but a good one. I’m thankful that it was warm enough to run outside today. Also, my daughter sent me a picture from her field trip to a neutrino lab (I think) and she’s all geeked out in a toolbelt and hardhat with a little headlight!

    Finally, words. This week I received some very thoughtful ones and it made me think (again) how powerful they are.

  12. Seeing those photos makes me just a teensy bit homesick. I really don’t miss the weather, but boy do I miss the sublime beauty that comes with the calm after the storm.

    Jane Y. is 70! Who knew! Happy birthday, Jane.

    I am now drooling over vegetable cobbler and maple-marinated tofu and wondering what I have in the refrigerator.

    Here are my kicks.
    1. I too loved the JJK video and had to giggle at the Sex and the City music that accompanied the Blue Rose Girls’ cameo.

    2. I am swamped at work but have been stealing a few minutes here and there to work on some ideas for National Poetry Month, which has been fun. I have a feeling April will be here before we know it.

    3. Just bought my plane ticket to go home for spring break ALL BY MYSELF. William is very unhappy I’m not taking him, but I selfishly want/need some time alone with my parents.

    4. My new hire finished his first week on the job and he’s amazing. A 30 year veteran of public education who retired to work for me, he spent his first years out of college playing for the San Diego Chargers. I love him already and know the kids we work with are going to love him as well.

    5. I get to interview the first of two finalists for my library position tomorrow. I was thrilled to learn that she served on the Odyssey selection committee last year and this year is serving on the Printz committee. She been lovely to talk to, so I can’t wait to meet her in person.

    6. Read Knucklehead this week. Too, too funny!

    7. Got the final confirmation for a big summer workshop by Oyate. I’m thrilled they’re coming.

    That’s it for me. Have a great week everyone.

  13. Hi!!! I hope everyone is having a lovely weekend, and I hope everyone will have a really good week ahead. :o)

    Some of my kicks (since the last time I shared):

    1. The 1st Philippine International English Language Conference. Some of the big names in English Language Teaching were there, like David Nunan. Wow. I learned a lot and met fascinating people. Plus, a good friend of mine stayed at my place during the conference.

    2. Finally blogging again and finally reading 7-Imp kicks again. Man, I didn’t like being too busy for the kidlitosphere.

    3. Speaking of the kidlitosphere. KidLitosphere Central is definitely one of my kicks this week. I was really stirred when I saw it for the first time.

    4. Receiving the ARCs of Fran Cannon Slayton’s When the Whistle Blows and Kathryn Fitzmaurice’s The Year the Swallows Came Early. Now, I need to make time to read them…

    5. Family + Chinese food (tea; yang chow fried rice; beef with bitter gourd; pork leg; pork dumplings; fried chicken with lemon sauce; fried spareribs with salt and pepper; warm bean curd with syrup and tapioca balls) + laughter = Saturday night. 🙂

    6. A Japanese green tea milk shake with “bubbles,” egg pudding, and vanilla ice cream.

    7. A little bit of unexpected romance.

  14. I love Jeremy’s ice photos! It’s good to be reminded that winter is beautiful this time of year. We have sun today, but the dark days are starting to drag me down a little.

    Jules, I agree with RM; you must explain this vegetable cobbler.

    My kicks:
    1. Lucas and I went to see Coraline Friday night. It was fun to hang out (we even got popcorn!), and we both enjoyed the movie, although it made me think I need to read the book again.
    2. Last night, I got out to see The Toe Tactic. The director (Emily Hubley) was on-hand for a Q&A after the screening, so that’s always fun.
    3. I’m finally getting some of the crap in my office out of my office, an ongoing goal of mine.
    4. I saw the allergist this week, and he said I could go from shots every two weeks to shots every three weeks. HUZZAH! It’s like graduating, BUT BETTER.
    5. My not-so-bright cat Benny whacked me on the leg this morning, and, once he had my attention, he ran into the bedroom and burrowed under the covers because he wanted to play the cat-under-the-covers game (anyone who has a cat knows about this game). It took Benny a few years to figure out windows are sometimes closed and he still sometimes chases his tail, so I was pretty darned impressed with this level of communication out of him.
    6. I moved around some furniture in my house and am pleased with the results.
    7. I also got rid of a bunch of junk that’s been sitting around my house. Again. It’s like my new hobby.

  15. I had occasion to skip over to Jeremy’s Flickr photostream a few days ago and, oh man, I gotta say: major photocrush here. So glad he was able to select a theme (with Jules’s help) and some samples, because I sure wouldn’t have been able to — WAY too many than could ever be included in a blog post. His ice pictures prove that the old saw about “no two snowflakes alike” actually understates the case: it’s all different, constantly, even when supposedly “frozen.”

    (All the icicles remind me of the Christmas Story movie moment when Ralphie really does nearly shoot his eye out w/the BB gun.)

    Two amazing videos today, neither of which I (clearly among the 1% clueless) had seen before — thank you! And I did laugh when, having watched the Screw-On Head video, I then read Jeffrey’s kick about hiking at Frozen Head State Park. What a juvenile. 🙂

    Some kicks:

    1. Biggest kick (but among the most quiet imaginable): big breakthrough in progress on the WIP.
    2. Victoria Stillwell‘s “It’s Me or the Dog” show on Animal Planet.
    3. The animated Coraline is out and seems to be kicking butt, at least among the critics. (Rotten Tomatoes; Metacritic) Can’t wait to see it myself (but hard to find closed-captioned theatrical showing, may have to wait — grr — for DVD).
    4. Two-three nights of sub-freezing weather in N. Florida… followed by at least two days of beautiful balmy blue skies. On a WEEKEND, yet. (Of course, at the moment I’m not exactly, like, outside…)
    5. Helping a long-distance sister upgrade her video card’s driver… via email. Weirdly more pleasant than doing it over the phone or in person; I think it helped us to have the several minutes’ breathing time between one step and the next.
    6. Shrimp po’boy sandwich. Nom.
    7. And, while on the subject of food: grilled pork chops. Actually, these particular ones — The Missus and I agreed — weren’t spectacular, more like “interesting.” But (a) they took long enough to prepare that we got an extra-long visit from The Stepson and his lady friend, and (b) I never even imagined you could grill pork chops without having to battle flames.

    Thanks for the kicks, everybody!

  16. Sharing Jeremy’s pictures here was a great idea! They are beautiful.

    I don’t want to bring everyone down but I have been sitting here shocked over the news from Australia of the terrible bushfires – the highest death toll in recorded history. I am thankful I don’t have any family or friends in danger.

    On a happier note, three kicks:

    1. I have loved the amazing snow we’ve had this last week. I’ve had some perfect walks, including one where the ever present sound of cars was stilled by the heavy snow/lack of snow ploughs and I could pretend I was in the middle of a snow covered wilderness. Lots of snowball fights with colleagues and staring hypnotised out of the window at the falling snow too.
    2. Last night we had a couple over for dinner and although I RUINED the pudding we had a great night with lots of interesting conversation
    3. My council has announced they are expanding the recycling collection to include all plastic! This is excellent news that means (in combination with the food waste collection) we will barely have any non-recycable waste.

  17. Happy Birthday Jane! I noticed on Julius Lester’s blog that he turned 70 on Tuesday so I’ll wish him a Happy Birthday too. http://acommonplacejbl.blogspot.com/2009/01/today-i-am-seventy.html
    Must have been a great week for literature!

  18. Wow, thanks so much everyone — I’m blushing with happiness reading all these kind words. I’m not organized enough to respond properly to all of them, but a few things I should add…

    Tanita, extra thanks for complimenting my entire life. Nobody’s ever done that before. We’ve made some good choices, but so much in life is just dumb luck…and we do feel lucky and blessed. There’s also a lot of the normal yuckiness and mundane toil of usual life that never makes it into the blog or photos. That bit you mentioned about my grandpa and son is extra special to me because my grandpa has Alzheimer’s and just went into full-time care a couple of weeks ago. Sigh.

    Jeffrey, feedback from a real photographer is always welcome! Thank you. I often do try B&W when I’m playing around with photos, but honestly haven’t got the skills/experience to do it properly. When I see good B&W like on your site, it makes me want to learn.

    JES, you nailed it — each bit is so unique and temporal. Makes it more precious, somehow…perhaps as a metaphor for life.

    1) This week’s kicks are obviously my first kick. What fun. Thanks again to Jules and Eisha for sharing their space, and to everyone here for making it warm and interesting every week.
    2) Happy birthday to Jane Yolen! Not that her birthday was my kick…it was my birthday too, and although we didn’t go too wild with celebrations, it was fun and mellow. It was also my first birthday on Facebook and I couldn’t believe the avalanche of birthday wishes from friends new and old.
    3) My new violin finally arrived, only few days late. It’s a beautiful honey-golden and sounds like a dream.
    4) Sunshine. January was gloomy this year, but February has been sunny. Good for the soul.
    5) I spent a happy couple of hours taking more photos of ice on a frozen creek nearby while the girls played (and they were also “Ice Hunters”, helping me find interesting things to shoot).
    6) New headphones. Seriously, for someone who spends as much time listening to music as I do, my old beaters were embarrassing.
    7) Fish ‘n chips.

  19. Tanita, agreed – Jeremy’s life looks pretty enviable, doesn’t it? And Congrats on mastering your WIP, and your own expectations of finishing it.

    cloudscome, I always thought living GF would be so hard, but that food basket sounds amazingly delicious. Glad you’re getting time to catch up on blogging, and that your oldest is such a good man.

    Woo, Jane, HAPPY BIRTHDAY!!! And way to save Jarrett’s behind in that video! I hope you get a credit in Lunch Lady.

    jama, how fun! You got to hang out with Sara AND Mother Reader? Jealous!!! And I love that you’re getting well-deserved author-props for your excellent blog.

    jone, I sure did. And Daniel Radcliffe was so good in the role I wasn’t even thinking about Harry Potter, just poor messed-up Alan Strang. Some of the other cast members… well, that’s another story. Anyway, congrats to your budding poets.

    Jeremy, I always crack up when I pass the interstate sign for Frozen Head State Park – sounds like a monument to Walt Disney’s remains, or a zombie theme park. I’m so thrilled to know someone who’s actually been there. I am also sending you all kinds of good mojo for the GRE, although if you saw my essay scores you might not want me to.

    rm preston, your kicks are full of things I have never read or watched. I’m gonna have to do something about that post haste-like. Also, if you have any more furniture to assemble, I am very partial to chocolate chip cookies too, and I’m pretty handy with a hex key.

    Sara, I will never understand your daughter’s job, but OMG I want to wear a hardhat with a little light on it to work! Bad-ass!!! I also love the play Equus, and had seen a college production of it a few years ago. B-way’s was pretty good, but actually not great. I did like the design, though, and Richard Griffiths as the psychologist was good.

    Tricia, thank goodness your U. is still hiring, and you’ve got such amazingly qualified applicants to choose from too. It’s a good thing to be able to surround yourself with smart and talented colleagues.

    Tarie, woo! You have been busy indeed! That conference sounds fascinating – as does all that Chinese food.

    adrienne, if you run out of crap to clear out of your own house and office, I’ve got PLENTY here for you to play with. And am I the only person who hasn’t seen Coraline yet? I kinda wanted to reread the book too, though.

    Oh, JES, I guess I’m not the only one. You and I can commiserate, and cover our eyes/ears when everyone else talks about its awesomeness. I’m glad you liked Screw-On Head too. My favorite line: “If by “candy” you mean “ancient forbidden evil,” then yes, I did tell you not to put it in your mouth.”

    emmaco, sweetie. I thought of you when I heard about the fires. How horrible, but I’m so glad your loved ones are okay.

    Happy Birthday, Jeremy! And thanks so much for sharing your photos with us – that first one, especially, stops my breath every time I look at it.

  20. Jules,

    That’s great about the School Library Activities Monthly. I loved jarrett’s video, too. Both Grace Lin are huge fans of Elisa Kleven’s art–and each of us has one of her Robert’s Snow snowflakes.


    Have fun with your Cybils book discussions.

    Love the photographs!!!


    1. This kick may sound strange. There was a death in my family in the past week. My mother’s first cousin Julia passed away at the age of 92. My mother and Julia were like sisters growing up. Julia lived her life to the fullest–and was always full of life. It was so good for my mother, sister, and me to reconnect with Julia’s three children and other relatives whom we haven’t seen in many years at the wake and at the dinner following the funeral. Now we’re planning to have a cousins’ get-together. I’m really looking forward to that.

    2. I’m reading THE GREAT DERANGEMENT, one of Matt Taibbi’s books. I find myself laughing out loud at times.

    3. Grace Lin and I had dinner last night. We hadn’t gotten together in about two months. It was great to see her again. In addition, we had excellent food at my favorite restaurant–carpaccio, crab cakes, grilled duck, venison short ribs, creme brulee, and a moist gengerbread cake with rum sauce.

    4. The other day, I emailed Florence Minor to ask permission to post images of two or three of Wendell Minor’s illustrations from ABRAHAM LINCOLN COMES HOME in a book review I’m writing for Wild Rose Reader. My telephone rang about five minutes after I sent the email. Wendell was calling to talk to me about the book, which was written by Robert Burleigh. We chatted at length about quite a few subjects. You can trust me when I tell you that Wendell and Florence are two of the warmest and finest people I have ever met.

    4. My daughter and her boyfriend Jerry dropped by for a visit today. I don’t get to see Sara too often since she moved out. It was so nice to sit and chat with both of them.

  21. My daughter is going to get a kick out of Jeremy Hiebert’s photographs. These days, it’s all about The Little Snow Girl, and The Children of the Snow. I enjoyed seeing that illustrator/blogger star vehicle of Krosoczka’s.

    I have a lot for which to be grateful. However, one kick I’ll share is something I found out today. Some of you know about all of the stitching I’ve done for my daughter’s school auction. Last Monday, there was a push to get in procurement forms with a drawing for a 50 dollar gift card to our local shopping mall (the only one I can stand). There were seventy entries, and guess who won it. That’s right, the woman who submitted 9 items, including 6 nature table dollies. Yay!

  22. Okay, first: Jeremy, this photo is so beautiful. It looks like a sun. It’s my new favorite one.

    Oh, and I really want some kick-ass headphones, too. I miss how, when I was a child and even a teen, I used to just and listen to music on good headphones — as a pasttime. Not while multi-tasking.

    RM, I’ve been curious about reading Revolutionary Road. Maybe that’ll be what I read next.

    Jone, thanks for setting me straight on that talented Clare.

    Sara, I like the way Jeremy describes it, too.

    Tricia, congrats on the new hire, and good luck with tomorrow’s interview.

    Tarie, to #6: I WANT TO TRY THAT. To #7: Ooh la la!

    Adrienne, do you think “Coraline” would be too, too much for an emerging five-year-old — the movie, that is? And what is The Toe Tactic?

    John, I will confirm that it was very hard to pick a set of photos from all of Jeremy’s sets — on account of them being so good and all. Oh, and big congrats on the work-in-progress progress.

    Emmaco, yes, the news coming out of Australia now is sad. I’m glad your friends and family are safe.

    Elaine, that’s quite lovely that you got to re-connect with your cousins.

    Farida, congrats! You so deserve that.

    And, for everyone’s who asked, here’s the lowdown on the veggie cobbler. It comes from the book pictured here, which I use so much, the pages are all water-marked and crinkly and sometimes food-covered, the sign of a well-loved, oft-used cookbook:

    Preheat oven to 400. In a big ‘ol honkin’ skillet, combine 2 quarts of water with 3 medium red potatoes (all sliced, of course) and 1 cup of carrots. You’re supposed to add celery, but ICK! Bring to a boil. Cover. Reduce heat to medium and cook about 5 mins, ’til the potatoes are almost cooked through. Drain. Keep those yummy ‘ol veggies to the side for a bit.

    In same skillet, melt 1 tablespoon of butter and add 2 tablespoons of oil. Why both? I dunno. Add 1 large chopped onion, 1 8-oz. package of sliced mushrooms, 1 and a quarter teaspoons of dried tarragon leaves, 1/4 teaspoon of salt, and 1/8 teaspoon pepper. Cook, stirring frequently, ’til the mushrooms are wilted and the onions are soft, about 5 mins. Sprinkle 1/3 cup of flour over it all. Reduce the heat to low. Cook, stirring for 2 mins. Slowly add 2 and 1/2 cups of milk, stirring well, ’til the sauce thickens (about 5 mins). Add 1 cup of peas and return others veggies to skillet. Cook over medium heat until thickened, about 2 mins.

    Take 1 (12-oz.) package of biscuit dough, spread it over the veggies (after you’ve thawed them, of course), and cook about 20 minutes.


  23. Eisha, I’ve set myself a goal of having my house cleaned out in two years. This gives you an idea of exactly how much crap there is in my house, and most of it isn’t even mine. Sigh.

    Jules, Coraline was, I’d say, Tim-Burton-level scary/intense. Some skeleton-y faces, some sudden surprises (one made ME jump), and those creepy, creepy, creepy button eyes, which I thought were plenty creepy enough in the book. There was one part that made Lucas and I both gasp, but now I can’t remember what that was about. I just remember us looking at each other sideways like, “I saw that!” Anyway, I would have taken Lucas to see it when he was five, but he’s always grooved on ghosts and monsters and ghouls. He’s never been able to cope with blood (I mean, not that he’s seen movies with blood, but in real life, if anyone’s bleeding, you just have to get him OUT THE ROOM. If it’s him bleeding, you’ve got trouble.), but there’s no blood in this.

  24. Grrr, I just hate not having a working computer at home, so I never get to post “on time”, and then another week has flown by and I have forgotten all my kicks. But now we have a working computer (a hand me down), but our phone line died over the weekend, taking DSL with it, and I have to post at work again.

    The photos are beautiful, Jeremy. I do not like the cold, but I think it came with real snow, I could come to love winter.

    emmaco – I am glad your family and friends are safe. This is such a shocking tragedy to happen to a wonderful nation and it’s people.

    Jane – Happy Birthday! I know my 4 year old will be intrigued by the idea that one of his favorite authors had a birthday. I am sure he will ask about cake and presents.

    Jules – butter for flavor and oil to stop the butter burning. That veggie cobbler sounds delicious. I think I will print a copy right now.

    My kicks:

    1 – It is a kick in itself to be able to post kicks for once.
    2 – Ruby likes to grab a book and crawl over, bringing it for me (or Daddy) to read. If she starts fussing, we can ask her to find a book to read, and she immediately cheers up.
    3 – Having a student tell me that her daughter told her to ask for me, because I was “so helpful”.
    4 – Cy is getting really excited about our trip to London in June. He loves to look at pictures in the Eyewitness guide to London, as well as “This is London” by Miroslav Sasek. He wants to check out the “old buildings”, and ride on a bus, and train. Luckily for him, we will get to do all of those things.
    5 – I had a haircut for the first time in . . . well, let me just say it has been a l-o-n-g time. Not only do I have a kicky new hairdo which everyone compliments me on, I also had so much hair cut off that I was able to donate my pony tail to Locks of Love.
    6 – Taxes are done.
    7 – We finally saw “The Dark Knight”, and I am jumping on the Heath Ledger bandwagon and shouting “WOW”! He was absolutely amazing and bloody scary too. He became the Joker. So I really don’t mind that he will probably win the Oscar over Robert Downey Jr. Speaking of RDJ, we watched “Iron Man” too. That was a fun movie.

  25. Jeremy: Wow! These photographs are lovely. 🙂 Thank you for sharing!

    Jules: Thanks for the messages. Yum to the veggies and coo to the doves. Sparkle and shine, little artist!

    eisha: Enjoy the books and the discussions! I really hope they move forward with the Baltimore film for Mike and Chris!

    Tanita: Happy to help! 🙂

    cloudsome: Foodie fun.

    🙂 Happy birthday, Jane!

    Jama: Hurrah for the meets and the greets.

    jone: Communication is a wonderful thing.

    Jeffrey: Congrats on completing the video and sending it off! Good luck with the video/application, with the radio interview, and with the GRE, and kudos on the exhibit.

    rm: Mmm, sleep. That sounds like a nice thing.

    Sara: Cheering your daughter on.

    Tricia: May your spring break trip be fun and safe. Good luck with the interviews and new folks.

    Tarie: Hurrah for your happiness!

    adrienne: Have you seen/heard the Coraline musical casting news? Healthy vibes for you. Cat-under-the-covers! Aw!

    JES: Applauding your WIP breakthrough. Keep going! See above to adrienne re: Coraline musical.

    emmaco: Glad to hear that you and yours are safe. Let us know if you need anything.

    Elaine: I’m so sorry for your loss.

    S&S: Wowza! Yay, indeed!

    Zoë: Go Ruby and her early book-love. Go you and your Locks of Love donation.

    My kicks for the past week:
    1) First read-through for the new musical (and, the next day, our second rehearsal)
    2) Sticking things out
    3) Sleep (I forced myself to sleep this weekend when I wasn’t feeling well)
    4) Shows
    5) Spontaneous singing
    6) Family
    7) Propel berry-flavored water

  26. love the dazzling icy photos ,
    and the warm and homey cobbler recipe!

    thank you.

  27. Adrienne, thanks for the low-down on the movie.

    Zoë, so glad you all have a computer again. And may I climb into your suitcase for your London trip?

    Little Willow, new musical. Yay!

    Elisa, glad you like the photos and recipe. I hope that, if anyone makes the cobbler, they let me know what they think.

  28. […] the Seven Impossible Things Before Breakfast blog. A few months later, Jules featured his work in one of her weekly “7 Kicks” posts, although she normally writes about authors and illustrators of kids’ books. Because of some […]

Leave a Comment

Should you have trouble posting, please contact sevenimp_blaine@blaine.org. Thanks.