Chicken Sisters, Chicken Wars, and Harvey Girls

Chicken Sisters, Chicken Wars, and Harvey Girls

Chicken Sisters, Chicken Wars, and Harvey Girls… What on earth could these three things have in common? I recently read Chicken Sisters by Kj Dell’antonia. In the prologue to the story, two sisters who had started out as Harvey Girls left the Harvey House restaurant to start their own restaurants, both serving fried chicken. Three…

80 Days? No problem! Dueling Journalists Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland Race Each Other On a Trip Around the World

80 Days? No problem! Dueling Journalists Nellie Bly and Elizabeth Bisland Race Each Other On a Trip Around the World

So by now you probably know that I like to go all-in when I’m researching a new idea to write about here.  When I read 80 Days to Elsewhere by KC Dyer it reminded me of a podcast I had listened to a year or so ago about two women who were racing around the…

A Bit About Beverly: Life Before the Famous Books

A Bit About Beverly: Life Before the Famous Books

Beverly Cleary is a well-known, prolific author of books for children. Her career spanned more than 50 years and her books have been loved by generations upon generations of kids. But have you ever wondered what Beverly Cleary’s own childhood was like? Thankfully Beverly penned two memoirs about her life prior to her publishing success…

Grandma Gatewood – An Appalachian Trail Legend

Grandma Gatewood – An Appalachian Trail Legend

I first heard about Grandma Gatewood several months ago on Sharon King’s blog, Midlife Moments. Emma Gatewood, better known as Grandma Gatewood, was the first woman to thru-hike the entire length of the Appalachian Trail (AT), alone, in one continuous journey. In 1955,  at the age of 67, she hiked 2,050 miles wearing canvas shoes and…

Librarian of Basra

Librarian of Basra

How far would you go to save a library full of books? ”It was like a battle when the books got burned. I imagined that those books, those history and culture and philosophy books, were crying, ‘Why, why, why?’ ” -Alia Muhammed Baker One of the many tragedies of war is the destruction of irreplaceable…

Poppies to Remember – How Moina Michael Became The Poppy Lady and Started the Custom of Wearing Poppies on Memorial Day

Poppies to Remember – How Moina Michael Became The Poppy Lady and Started the Custom of Wearing Poppies on Memorial Day

Why do we wear poppies on Memorial Day? For that matter, what is Memorial Day even about?  I teach 5-year-olds so for them, these questions are nebulous at best.  I love this story about Moina Belle Michael and the origin of the Memorial Poppy but unfortunately it’s too mature for my young students (better suited…