Smorgasbord Blogger Daily – Thursday January 16th 2020 – #Children #Fears Becky Ross Michael, #Communication #NonVerbal Jim Borden, #Familyhistory Liz Gauffreau


The first post is from Becky Ross Michael and is about the difficult conversation that we sometimes have to have with children about the state of the world. Becky recalls her own childhood during the ‘Cold War’ and shares some books that tackle the challenging subjects that children might hear about.

Talking with Kids about War

The drafty but beloved home of my Michigan childhood featured a rather dim and damp basement that was accessed through a trap door from our kitchen. That cement-floored space was divided into several separate rooms. During the winter, my mother hung washed clothing on lines to dry in the largest of those areas. One of the small rooms was fashioned almost entirely with rough, wooden shelving that held clear Ball and Mason jars filled with fruits and vegetables my mother had canned

Sometimes we played downstairs while she hung clothes on the line. Being a somewhat apprehensive, quiet, and rather OCD child, one would think I could have been most concerned with falling down the steps (my brother did, once!), about what was hiding in the dark corners, or with that large spider eyeing us from its web, overhead. No, this child of the Fifties and Sixties was silently pondering whether there was enough food for our family on the shelves in that little room, in case we needed to hide out in our basement if “the Russians” attacked!

Head over to read the rest of this post and find out more about the books Becky recommends: Talking with Kids about War, Becky Ross Michael

Becky fountain 2018

About Becky Ross Michael

Originally from Michigan and now living in Texas, Becky’s writing has appeared in the Ellery Queen Mystery Magazine, U.P. Reader, and Mystery Readers Journal.

Besides attending several critique groups and creating her personal writing pieces, Becky, a former teacher, also works as a freelance editor. She enjoys spending time with her family, along with reading, gardening, sight-seeing, collecting vintage items, and healthy cooking.

The next post is from Jim Borden and shares his experiences being welcomed in Singapore and the power of the look of confusion… I think we can all relate.

The Hidden Power of the Confused Look

I’d like to say it’s taken me 62 years to master having a confused look on my face, but in reality, I think it’s the default facial expression I was born with.

And while there may be times when having a confused look may not be a good thing (such as when a student asks me a basic question, or when I am taking a math test, or when I am looking at my monthly bank statement), I’ve learned that my look of utter confusion is usually quite beneficial.

And it’s never been truer than my first week in Singapore. I’ve been finding that the people here are incredibly helpful when they see that befuddled look on my face. Here are some examples:

Head over to find out more about the reactions to Jim’s bemused expression: The Hidden Power of the Confused Look by Jim Borden

About Jim Borden

Husband, dad, brother, uncle, nephew, friend, teacher, ex-swimmer, blogger, vegan, juggler, learner, introvert.

Now that I’ve reduced myself to a cultural stereotype (with a hat tip to Woody Allen), who am I when I take away all the labels?

This blog has given me a chance to think more deeply about many things, and to share those thoughts with the world (well at least a really tiny part of the world). And in sharing those thoughts, I’ve started to understand a little bit of who I am. A 60-something guy trying to figure out the world, and his place in it.

The third post that I recommend that you head over to enjoy in full is from Liz Gauffreau and is the story behind the book Leora’s Letters by Joy Neal Kidney and Liz’s review.

I am very pleased to be featuring my review of Leora’s Letters, written by Joy Neal Kidney. I have been following Joy’s family history blog, Joy Neal Kidney – Family Family and local stories and history, favorite books, for a few years now, and I was thrilled to see the history of her mother’s family during World War II compiled in book form. I immediately purchased it, read it, and reviewed it! Joy was gracious enough to provide me with some personal photographs with captions to accompany my review.

Head over to find out more about the background to this book, view some original photographs and read Liz’s review: Digital discoveries – Review of Leora’s Letters by Liz Gauffreau

Elizabeth Gauffreau, BuyAmazon US – and : Amazon UK – Follow Elizabeth: Goodreads –  blog: Liz Gauffreau

Thank you for dropping in today and I hope you will head over to read the posts in full.. thanks Sally.