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National Poetry Month — Create a Poem

Poem about Trail

Create a Poem From an Experience

A Poem is Not Rocket Science

I thought this might be a good time  to explain some of the creative ways poets bring a new poem to life. Your first experience with poem construction probably came in grade school classes where rhymed poems and maybe Haiku was introduced.

Poetry is foreign to many of our minds at that age — even though children create songs and play rhymes all the time when they’re not in school. Sometimes it’s the teacher that brings the love of poetry to them — other times the dread of “poetry time” is all consuming,  almost like taking a test.

Later you may have been introduced to “free-verse” where you don’t need to rhyme at all. But that doesn’t make it easier. Some poem crafters of free-verse work on it for weeks looking for the right words to convey their deep feelings, intellect, or concept.

Create a Poem From an Emotional Experience

Think about a special situation that brought your feelings into raw perspective. Let’s say you hiked a mountain trail and it was a life changing experience.

Now take those thoughts and write them down. Put them in chronological order or mix them with the level of emotion you felt. Find some strong emotional words with good visual meaning. Try to use your natural senses as motivation to help others understand how you feel: see, smell, touch, taste, hear. Use them all if you can. Make it a free-verse. Have fun with it.

So I thought about my first time I climbed to the cliff top trail of Bright Angel in Grand Canyon. I struggled with the idea of even going. You’ll see how I tried to talk myself out of it. (My excuses are part of the poem) I made plenty of excuses in my head. Everyone has a photo of that point. Millions have been there. Why bother? For me, the weather was growing stormy. I really should have gone back to the car but my sister and I were on the last days of vacation. We just had to go see — take a chance — it might be worth it.

Bright Angel Trail

I struggled to get here.

The parking lot was full.

I heaved thin air, lungs, ached.

I should never have come.

Then I forgot my camera.

Those batteries are so expensive.

My final step transcended magic.

No one will believe I came here.

Clouds billowed like sails below me.

How will I prove it?

Red cliffs rose like layered-cake bluffs.

I can even taste the fresh air.

I cried like an eagle … then soared.

I’ll remember. It’s carved in stone.

I just created this poem (really) and it was a wonderful jump back to 1976. What I didn’t say was the lightning that struck across the point while my sister was holding me steady against the wind so I could get a photo with her camera. I captured the lightning in my photo! We were giddy, hoping the shot would actually show the lightning! We had to wait until the film was processed to find out how awesome it was!

Our annual Poetry Contest begins this month and runs until May 15th.  I wish to personally invite you. Check out the contest rules  and fees on our Contest Page above. Submitting to a regional contest is one of the best ways to get good feedback from a cross-section of readers. I hope you’ll try to break the barrier of seeing poetry as too difficult for you to master. Take a chance. Share it with our judges and be sure to say you were inspired by this poem.

I’ll say it again: Take a chance.

 

Rusty LaGrange

I will read your poems but I may not be a judge. No decision has been made yet. We’re still working on the prizes for First, Second, and Third.

New Basket Give-Away at Cadillac Antiques in Lucerne Valley

We just heard the news! Cadillac Antiques is gearing up for their first year anniversary with a Blog Basket Give-Away in July. It’s been nearly a year since the shop first opened in the Pueblo Building in Lucerne Valley. To celebrate, owners Patty, Ralph, Charlene and Dave have decided to fill a huge basket with everything donated from the store, its consignment vendors, and High Desert Blogging members.

Cadillac Antiques has Car-lectibles and furniture, glassware, and paintings and great gifts

Cadillac Antiques has Car-lectibles and furniture, glassware, and paintings and great gifts

Watch here for the latest news as the basket begins to fill with collectible goodies, new and used gifts of all sorts, plus a few re-purposed “car-lectibles” — auto parts with a new lease on life as chromed gadgets, and what-nots. We don’t know what surprises are inside. READ MORE »

Giveaway Baskets at High Desert Vintage Shops

Giveaway Basket

Sugar Shack Valentine’s Day Giveaway Basket

Gift baskets were a highlight of Valentine’s Day at High Desert’s Oro Grande shops, Sugar Shack and Silver Trails. The basket giveaways were hosted by owners of the two shops and http://highdesertblogging.com. Vintage items, candy, and more goodies were donated for the baskets.

Valentine's Day Giveaway at Silver Trails

Silver Trails Valentine’s Day Basket Giveaway

The afternoon was busy with couples strolling into the shops. While they browsed, names were drawn for the basket giveaways.

Congratulations to Diana C. who won Sugar Shack’s basket of Valentine gifts and goodies. When contacted by phone, she asked, “When did I sign up for the drawing?” She didn’t remember entering to win the basket. Then Diana laughed and said her husband had put her name down for the drawing.

Next door to Sugar Shack there was another drawing happening. It was a treat to get to meet the winner Kat. She had entered the drawing on Valentine’s Day and won. She came to the shop before closing and agreed to be included in the photos for High Desert Blogging.

Valentine's Day Giveaway at Silver Trails

Silver Trails Basket Giveaway Winner

Valentine's Day Giveaway at Silver Trails

Giveaway Winner Kat and Silver Trails Co-Owner Madie

Thank you, Sugar Shack and Silver Trails, for joining High Desert Blogging for the Valentine’s basket giveaways!

Be looking for the next basket giveaway coming in the Spring! Entrepreneurs of small businesses, vintage and other shops, contact Rusty or Angie at hdblogging@gmail.com if you are interested in participating in the giveaway.

15 Ways to Create a Fun Valentine’s Day with Family and Pets

Vintage, Antiques, and Candy

Sugar Shack

Valentine’s Day, that special day of the year for celebrating love and romance, will be here soon. Stores such as Sugar Shack in Oro Grande, a community in California’s Mohave Desert, are getting prepared.

Sugar Shack is a candy store plus vintage pieces and antiques. I saw an adorable sign for grandparents on their Facebook page today that says “GRANDPARENTS’ HOME ALWAYS OPEN”. Valentine’s Day can be fun for everyone. A typical gift on February 14th may include candy gift wrapped in red or pink with hearts. However, it’s okay to get creative with your list of things to give. When you think of love, what do you think of? Your beau? Spouse? Children, grandchildren? How about a pet?

Valentine's Day pets

Dress up your pet for Valentine’s Day

 

Here is a fun shopping list of gifts and things to do as you prepare to make this Valentine’s Day the best ever:

  1. Wrap candy in a festive bag, and tie ribbons with a key
  2. Give a gift of flowers to plant in a garden.
  3. Enter a Valentine’s Day give-away contest (hint: Sugar Shack and a shop next door, Silver Trails, are each giving away a basket of goodies and gifts).
  4. Go to an Improv Show.
  5. Make your own candlelight dinner at home.
  6. Buy your pet a big pretty red or pink bow (or tie for the male gender pet).
  7. Wrap up purple or pink stationery to give to your young daughter who loves to write (my parents did that for me one year — I was thrilled and have never forgotten it).
  8. Purchase a fancy vintage sugar container and fill it with red hots (hint…you might find something like this in the Silver Trails basket).
  9. Take your dog for a walk and treat both of you with treats.
  10. Surprise your hubby or wifey or significant other with a basket filled with bubble bath, candle, favorite CD, chocolate, favorite magazine, almonds, and berries.
  11. Give your granddaughter a red or pink outfit for Valentine’s Day, a pink ball — and bounce the ball outside with her.
  12. Give your grandson a red cap, red ball, and red car (a toy one preferably unless you’re up to buying a car for your older grandson) — and go outside with him to play ball.
  13. Cook a special breakfast that includes the favorite foods of your spouse and children.
  14. Give your pet a new toy.
  15. Treat yourself to dessert!

If you choose some of the listed items above for your Valentine’s Day plans, I’d love to hear from you. Share your Valentine’s Day fun and creative experience in the comment section provided.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

Last Blog Basket of the Season Draw at Suger Shack

As we sneak up on the last days of December, I represented High Desert Blogging com’s Basket Give-Away drawing Saturday, Dec. 20, at Sugar Shack. This shop is always festive and the owners — mother -daughter team — Debbie and Tonya, always have the coffee brewing.

Tonya and Debbie Got the Sweet Treats at Sugar Shack

Tonya and Debbie Got the Sweet Treats at Sugar Shack

One of the largest baskets of our seven-week drawing, Sugar Shack was so enthusiastic to try the basket give-away that they barely had time to get sign-ins. As people began coming in to get out of the blast of wind at Oro Grande’s new face lifted vintage shops in Old Town, they shopped and sipped and warmed up. Everyone was in such a cheery mood.

 

 

 

I placed all of the Basket Give-Away names in a bag and drew Joel Esparza! Congratulations!!

And the Winner Is...

And the Winner Is…

He only gave an email address so we are hoping to hear from him soon.

In the meantime, I hope shoppers remember that if you’ve stuck for a gift for a teen or a gentleman, candy is always a great selection.

 

 

Sugar Shack Antiques, Collectibles, and Candies will have modified  hours for the holidays so be sure to call (760) 646-0562 or check their Facebook page for updates.

 

Sugar Shack _tonya_02_12202014

 

Our winner, Joel, picked up his basket and enjoyed a great and very sweet collection of goodies from Sugar Shack.

Keep watching for our next basket give-away for Valentine’s Day!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 Happy Holidays!

From Angie and Rusty

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Seasonal Basket Give-Aways Winner Announced

High Desert vintage shoppers had nearly seven weeks to shop and sign -up for our Basket Give-Away! As it turned out Vintage Gypsies kept a basket on their counter the  longest and receiving quite a few sign-ins.

The basket drawing was held Saturday at Vintage Gypsies with Kevin Moody (pictured with vase full of entries) helping to draw the name. Owners Becky and Kathy stood by as the name was revealed.

Kevin Draws the Winning Name!

Kevin Draws the Winning Name!

Congratulations to new High Desert resident Roxy Cantes who visits the shop quite often. “It’s regular shoppers like Roxy who we love to see come into the store and find just those items that make her house feel like home,” said Becky.

Vintage Gypsies will be open the day before Christmas, Dec. 24th, from 10-4, closing on Christmas Day. Be sure to check their Facebook page for their hours during the holidays.

We left a message for Roxy hoping she will be able to drop by the shop before Christmas to receive her basket of goodies!

 

 

Happy Holidays!

From Angie & Rusty

Only 6 Days Left for Sugar Shack’s Basket Give-Away

With only 11 days before Christmas, shopping ideas might be just what you’re looking for. A gift of a bygone era — as in collectibles and small antiques —  can brighten anyone’s holiday. We have so many vintage and antiques in the High Desert to choose from.

 

Vintage, Antiques, and Candy

Sugar Shack

What if you are searching for a gift for children or teens and venturing into an electronics store is a bit overwhelming? Why not try candies and confections instead? I don’t know of anyone who would turn down candy!

Right now Sugar Shack, one of the newest candy shops  on Route 66 in Oro Grande, is stocking its shelves with the scent of peppermint and chocolate. There’s more, of course, but those are my favorite flavors. They offer sugar-free candies, too.

Even better is the Autumn Blog Basket Give-Away continuing with the latest entry basket at Sugar Shack. It’s crammed with everything: some candy, a number of collectibles, handmade and crafty items, and I think I saw an antique, too. Their basket drawing is set for Dec. 20th. Nothing to buy. No tickets. No charge at all. Just stop by and sign up. Winner will be notified by phone and email. Winner doesn’t need to be present. it’s High Desert Blogging’s way of thanking our High Desert community for supporting our efforts for the past 3 years.

Some of their regular shoppers at Sugar Shack come in just for their morning coffee and a pastry. The shop also offers a collection of antiques and handmade crafts, and collectibles — I saw “Betty Boop” collection looking at me from the shelf. As Sugar Shack grows, mother and daughter owners, Debbie Justice and Tonya Edwards, will expand their line of goodies. They currently house three vendors who offer the handmade goods.

Betty Boop is alive and well and living at Sugar Shack

Betty Boop is alive and well and living at Sugar Shack

Sugar Shack collectibles, candies, and antiques open early 6 am Monday through Friday and close by 5 pm. On weekends they open 10 am until 5 pm. Their new store number is (760) 646-0562.

You can find out more about them and some daily specials on Facebook. Go To: www.Facebook.com/sugarshackHD

Stop in and say “hi” to Debbie and Tonya, get a hot mug of coffee, and let your sweet tooth do the shopping.

 

Rusty LaGrange

 

High Desert’s Autumn Blog Basket Give-Away Ends Saturday Dec. 6th

By this Saturday, we’ll have the final winners of the “Autumn Blog Basket Give-Away.” Have you signed-in? Anyone is eligible to win if they stop by at these listed Vintage and Antique shops around the Victor Valley. Earlier, shops sponsored to hold baskets which were filled with a variety of collectables, antiques, foods, and specialty items for the season. No obligation to buy. No tickets. It’s a free drawing offered by bloggers from High Desert Bogging.com to shoppers who enter their names and e-mail addresses. We just wish to give back to the communities who have helped our High Desert blogging group grow.

So far, Find Your Ps and Qs Antiques in Victorville has gathered 135 entries. Vintage Gypsies in Apple Valley already received 40 entries, and another 45 signed-up at The Desert Cottage in Hesperia. See the asterisk for current stores awaiting the drawing this Saturday. Winners need not be present to win.

The first baskets were given away in November but due to the overwhelming interest in hosting new baskets, the second give-away continues until Dec. 6th. What are you waiting for?

High Desert Blogging  “Autumn Basket Give-away” Victor Valley area sponsored shops:

1.      * Vintage Gypsies, 21880 Hwy. 18 (across from Molly’s Country Kitchen in Old Town), Apple Valley, CA

2.      * The Desert Cottage, 15451 Bear Valley Road, Hesperia, CA

3.      * Find Your Ps and Qs Antiques, 15080 7th Street, Suite 11, (near Gridiron Pizza) Victorville, CA

4.      Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures, 19222 National Trails Hwy., Oro Grande, CA (past basket host)

5.      Salvaged & Tattered, 19248 National Trails Hwy., Oro Grande, CA (past basket host)

  Let us know if you won a basket. We love feedback!

Rusty LaGrange

Desert Cottage Joins Autumn Basket Give-Away

 

Grace and elegance are the best words to describe The Desert Cottage, a home repurposed into a fashion plate for vintage and antique pieces. It was such a pleasure walking slowly through what seemed like endless shops in one. Each room and cozy niche was tastefully decorated in vintage style with different themes. With 20 vendors, the mix is a true adventure.

A little bit camera shy, Yvonne and Anna, share a silly moment while showing the holiday decor

A little bit camera shy, Yvonne and Anna, share a silly moment while showing the holiday decor

 

Too many wonderful things… so little time. I think that’s my motto.

 

Anna at Desert Cottage

Anna at Desert Cottage

The Desert Cottage has also joined High Desert Blogging’s “Autumn Blog Basket Give-Away.” Their donor basket is filling fast with yummy foods, collectibles, and more, added daily. The drawing is scheduled for Saturday, December 6th at noon. A winner will be drawn from those who have signed in at the shop. Stop by and enter. There’s no charge, no tickets. It’s just the way that High Desert Blogging is giving back to High Desert  communities for their support these past three years.

Flower Arrangements by Yvonne

Flower Arrangements by Yvonne

 

For your visit there, be sure to talk to Anna, the owner and her long-time friend, Yvonne. They love to greet new visitors and cater to the many requests they receive from hunters looking for gifts and collections. Yvonne specializes in flower arrangements while Anna has a creative eye for vintage goodies. Her creations are placed throughout the main section. Christmas décor is beginning to fill in, so most vendors will have something for everybody.

 

The Desert Cottage can be found on Facebook and Instagram with latest sale items listed. Their hours are 10-5 daily with Sundays and Mondays closed, located at 15451 Bear Valley Rd near 11th Street, (760) 948-7225.

 

Basket Winners Announced for “Enchanted Treasures’ and “Salvaged & Tattered” Vintage Shops Held Nov 16

Surrounded by her Enchanted Treasures, Linda Marie gathered a basket full of goodies for the drawing.

Surrounded by her Enchanted Treasures, Linda Marie gathered a basket full of goodies for the drawing.

 

It was a beautiful day in the High Desert for a Autumn Basket Give-Away. The first vintage shop Angie and I traveled to, out in Oro Grande on National Trails Highway, was Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures. Old Town Oro Grande has several old whitewashed brick buildings that are receiving facelifts and new tenants. But Linda Marie’s has been an anchor store for many years, and the first to sponsor a basket in her shop.

If you haven’t made the trek out there, it’s filled with outdoor imagination. Wander through little mazes of amazing stuff. Booth owners make changes often so the inventory moves. Here, patio furniture and almost anything get a new upcycled life. At the front is an antiques and collectibles shop housed in an old adobe turned showcase. “It’s a solid building,” says Linda, “even when the trains go by, the glass items may ring and jingle, but nothing falls.”

Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures is just down the street from these new shops. In fact, she opened a second shop, Salvaged & Tattered, with the assistance of vendor Virginia Martinez and others. This shop is flaunting a white and cream, lacy vintage theme. It makes you want to stop and gaze  around at the many designs and sparkly jewels, lamps, and bric-a-brac that make vintage shops so charming.

                                                                                               Owner of Linda Marie's Enchanted Treasures

                                                                                  Owner of Linda Marie’s Enchanted Treasures

The drawing for the winner of the basket sponsored by Enchanted Treasures was held at 11 am. And the winner is Ceily Highburger from Colorado, who happened to be on vacation out West! What a surprise.

 Sponsored Basket Winner Announced

Sponsored Basket Winner Announced at Salvaged & Tattered

We walked down the street to see how Salvaged & Tattered was doing. In only a month, since their doors opened, manager “Vee”  agreed that the traffic into the shop has been very steady. And that’s understandable with the lure of many shops in one convenient location.

Victorian Cream and Lace
Victorian Cream and Lace

 

Our Autumn Blog Basket Give-Away was also planned for this Saturday drawing, so with a faux drum roll please …

Ruth Guffey from the High Desert was drawn as the winner of a beautiful wire basket full of vintage goodies, some food items, and little secrets stuffed inside. Congratulations, ladies!

 Vee Martinez greets shoppers at new store

Vee Martinez greets shoppers at Linda Marie’s newest store

 

 

Another door down is Silver Trails specializing in native Indian jewelry and antiques. Engaged couple Patrick Morton and Maddie enjoy collectibles and hunting for antiques that shoppers will love. Just open 30 days ago, traffic and sales are encouraging. It’s early yet, so vintage shoppers can find some new goodies at Silver Trails. They also offer lay-away. They are another one of our newest basket sponsor for our Bloggers Basket Give-Away. You’ll find them at 19248 National Trails Hwy. Their number is (760) 484-6300.

Young Couple, Maddie and Patrick, open Silver Trails antique shop
Young Couple, Maddie and Patrick, open Silver Trails antique shop
                 Shopping in Silver Trails  Shopping in Silver Trails

Besides the fact that Angie and I will be returning December 6th for our basket drawing at Silver Trails, another store opening in December promises to fill our sweet tooths. An old-fashioned candy store with sodas and other goodies is tempting us. Can’t wait to see what’s inside!

 Open! Open ! Open!

 Later, we’ll meet another newcomer to High Desert’s sudden bloom of vintage shops.

Rusty

 

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