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The Daily Guide - Waynesville, MO
What is it that 60-yr old people think of, including advice for my children
Winter and the experience of silence
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About this blog
By Red Barn
I grew up in Eastern North Dakota, and went to college at UND. I am currently teaching as a special education resource teacher in Minneapolis. I am married to a great second husband, who puts up with so much. I have one married son who is ...
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Life at 60 . . . looking at life on the slow side
I grew up in Eastern North Dakota, and went to college at UND. I am currently teaching as a special education resource teacher in Minneapolis. I am married to a great second husband, who puts up with so much. I have one married son who is struggling to make a living in Minneapolis. He and his wife have 2 sons, ages 2 and 3, which is totally insanity, but also so much fun. I also have a newly married stepdaughter, who with her husband, is the proud 'parent' of a new puppy, 2 or 3 cats, a hamster, a college roommate still living in the spare room, and who knows what else they acquired in the last month.

I began thinking about blogging while e-mailing parenting advice to my daughter-in-law. Isn't that the typical Grandma/Mother-in-law? She graciously thanks me for all advice, but is also free to disregard anything I say.

I am also the lucky daughter of a very plucky and determined 96 year old mother.
Recent Posts
By Red Barn
March 4, 2013 12:01 a.m.



Driving to North Dakota again.    We have it timed so I get up to see my mother at least once every 2 to 3 months.   Time away takes a new meaning when Mom passed the 97 year mark.

Every time I am in North Dakota something stands out, good or bad.   This time it was the weather.    In Minneapolis, people talk about having hard winters.   Really.   They do.   I always feel that I have missed the winter if I do not spend time in North Dakota.    There is something different about the air when it is below zero.   There is a snap to everything.

I love being on the farm and walking from one house to the other on the homestead.   The snow squeaks.   There is a silence.    Yet every sound is clear.

I taught the kids in my classroom to listen to the silence.    I told them that we are surrounded by noise.   Some people turn on the TV, the radio, or plug themselves into their ipods as soon as they are alone.    In our school, the students are allowed to listen to music while they study to help them block out other distractions.    The downside of this is that we often do not hear or even recognize our inner voice.

Some of my student loved the quiet time.    It is called ‘Silent and Still’.    No one moves even a foot or their hands during the 60 seconds.    Children breathe as quietly as they can.  And we listen.    

Students then wrote about their experience.    It wasn’t just to be quiet, they were supposed to really listen to themselves.

What resulted was like poetry for some.

I had one student literally fall off her chair when we finished. OK she does have a flair for the dramatic, but she stated that this was one of the hardest things she has had to do:   To listen to herself and the quiet.

All of this is what I grew up with on the farm    The ability to listen to silence and little sounds.    It is one of the things that I value from being brought up on the farm.   The ability to listen to the world and to l

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