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Monday, November 25, 2013

#SOL2013 Did you tell her what you told me?


When I arrive on a Saturday night, it is usually for a coveted "date night" for their Mom and Dad.  The girlies, have plans to craft, color, play games, and read books. It's always a special time when "Auntie" zooms in for a good-old-play-date.  Over the years, it's gotten easier as they no longer need bottles, rocking, diapers and dressing.  Yet, in another way, it is getting harder and harder! 

When I arrived, this last time, their dad asked, "Did you tell Auntie what you told me this morning?"
"Not yet," one of the girlies said sheepishly as if the words might spoil the surprise ahead. 
"Well," dad continued, "I heard that you, Auntie, tell the BEST stories."  As he wrapped his scarf around his neck and scurried out the door for a long-coveted date night filled with adult-conversation and food, he smiled, "No pressure or anything, just thought you should know!"

I've never really considered myself to be a storyteller and truth-be-told, while I read to them until they refused to sit through any more books, my own personal children did not have nightly storytelling.  For the girlies, my stories, coming at the heels of bedtime story reading, were originally a way to distract suddenly-sullen-small children who seriously-missed their parents.  Over the years, these stories have grown in length and improved in quality!  Now, they might even be considered the coveted! 

I usually craft some characters, roughly similar to the girlies and what they have done that day.  I usually craft a setting that we can all "see" and have some problem or conflict that we can unpack and solved in just a few minutes

The other night, the story was set in a castle with 101 books, 101 toys, 101 steps, a bathtub swimming pool and a master bedroom trampoline bed!  I spent an enormous amount of time elaborating on the moat filled not with alligators, but with goldfish, because they asked questions about the moat.  I elaborated on the castle's floors and bedrooms when they seemed to want to know every detail.  I must admit that the black-as-night bedroom with twinkling star lights I described sounded pretty cool and that shower complete with rainstorm sound effects sounded like it might be a best seller at Castle Depot! 

As I finally, wrapped up the story, there were two smiling customers and I knew I had secured my title for at least a few more months!   I could feel the influence of writing guru, Donald Graves, who long ago proposed we all find that voice inside us to be a little stronger when we have a purpose and an audience! 

9 comments:

Tracey Ferreri said...

Making cherished memories!! love it!!

BK said...

I loved my Annie B place in the lives of 4 nieces and nephews. But I was not a great storyteller. Bravo to you Anita. I was more about rolling on the floor and acting crazy.
Bonnie

Leigh Anne said...

These kinds of made-up stories are the best! It is so wonderful to hear relationships between aunts and niece/nephews. My sister has that with my children. I had to laugh when you said it is easier because they no longer need bottles or diapers...she felt the same way! I am sure it was because she never had kids of her own! Lovely story.

elle1955 said...

I can tell by the way you tell of your story telling that the story unfolded with just enough detail in just the right way.

LInda Baie said...

I hope you do know that this is how Tolkien, Lewis, Milne & others began their own stories. And I hope you're writing at least some of them down. They sound like lovely picture book stories to me! Thank you for sharing, Anita & Happy Thanksgiving too!

Tara @ A Teaching Life said...

We all have stories o tell, and sometimes we just want to listen. This was a lovely post celebrating stories...and I think you need to put this 101 story down on paper!

Dana Murphy said...

Ooooh, even I was enthralled in your story! I'd say you do, indeed, tell the best stories! Lucky girls!

I started oral storytelling when my daughter was potty training as a way to pass the vast amount of time we spent in the bathroom. She loves it still!

Ramona said...

I loved listening to this fabulous story unfold in your slice. Lucky girls!

Amy Rudd said...

Loved hearing the story of your story telling! The room with the twinkling stars sounds awesome a! Happy Thanksgiving!