Great List of Kid's Toys-No Batteries Needed!

Metroland, an interesting and well written blog from Albany NY's alternative newsweekly has included Thumball by Answers In Motion on their list of cool Kid's Stuff. They summed up Thumball's staggering reach with the line, "Thumball is quickly becoming a hit from cribs to corporate retreats." It is true you may find a Thumball at a top corporate office or in a child's playroom in Indiana and that is part of the fun. A fun tool that encourages positive social interaction and increased opportunities for learning really is great for everyone at any age!

Thumball is showing up on Christmas lists, referenced in blogs and winning toy awards. Be on the look out this holiday season for Thumball to add to the magic that happens when loved ones get together and get to know each other even more, no batteries needed!

NJEA and Thumball: Perfect Together

The NJEA convention in Atlantic City was a huge success. Educators from all over NJ gathered together to share and expand their fund of knowledge. Answers In Motion exhibited with 18 Thumball designs available for purchase and the attendees were exuberant about bringing Thumballs back to their schools.

Thumball earned excellent feedback from caring and dedicated teachers, counselors, SLPs, ESL experts, presenotrs and parents happy to find a simple yet effective learning tool. One teacher reported that Thumball "saved my morning meeting time" explaining that her opening lesson each day is now filled with language expansion and focused attention as students particiapte eagerly and appropriately with Thumball.

We want to share the good vibrations from this event with a gift. Twenty percent off your entire order at Enter NJEA in the discount code box in your shopping cart.

Fat Brain Toys Chooses Thumball as A Winner!

4 inch Thumball has been chosen as a winner in the 2010 Fat Brain Toy Awards which means that visitors to Fat Brain Toys have chosen it as the best-of-the-best in specialty toys, games, and gifts. It is a honor to be recognized by a top notch educational toy retailer like Fat Brain. They offer the best toys for learning and family fun and we at Answers In Motion are thrilled to be part of their family of products. Using smart toys like Thumball at home and in school help students to develop focused attention, problem solving, social skills and healthy life styles. Thanks Fat Brain and thanks to all our customers and friends.

Enjoy Creating A Lifelong Love of Reading in Infancy

This article from got it so right.
Easy to understand and easy to implement ideas really will create a foundation of language skills and a love for literacy. Five Star Article!

The Real Vegas

A trip to Vegas is often a trip to "The Strip" where you can find amazing hotels, quality restaurants, world class entertainment, night clubs and of course casinos. It is a sight to see and many different kinds of experiences can be had in "Sin city".

We only go to Vegas on business trips for our company Answers In Motion (2010 ASD trade show) but we try to fit in at least one fun and interesting thing to do. Last year it was the amazing production called LOVE, a Beatles tribute by Cirque du a word, FANtastic!! This year we got to see the real Vegas, not the strip or the town or the shows or the buildings but rather the Vegas of millions of years ago.

A short drive out of town and you will find desert with Joshua trees(a plant actually, in the lily family!). With a well educated native at your side(thank you Robert!!) you can learn to recognize the layers of rock and landmarks of days gone by when mammoths roamed the land or ocean covered the desert floor. Now drive up to higher elevation and see first the scrubby pinions and junipers.

A very short scenic drive and you will be enfolded into cooler temperatures, tall pines and stunning vistas in the Spring mountains of NV. Did you know skiing is available from Oct to April? Picnic groves are easily found and hikes from simple to expert can be had. The air is so clean and fresh and the pace is lesuirely, as far from the lights and sounds of the strip as you can get but only 45 minutes away!

We are fortunate to know Robert, a lifelong NV native turned tour guide and all around great person. He has taken us to Red Rock Canyon and Mt Charleston one of the tallest peaks in NV and generously shares his vast knowledge of history, the flora and the fauna of the area. It leaves you with a new connection to the place called Vegas beyond the famous man made playground.

When you venture out West to try your luck for fun or business, do yourself a favor and contact Guided Vegas Tours...ask for Robert. A simple walking tour of the Strip or a day or night adventure into the real Vegas of desert, high desert or mountain landscapes and you will be a winner every time.

Thumball Loves Teachers

It's officially "Back To School" time and you know what that means! 15% off your Thumball™ order! Enter BTS1011 in discount code box(does not apply to sets). Great way for students to get acquainted with Who Are You Thumball. Want to develop student's character and encourage self reflection? Try Virtues and Values, Emotion Mania and Best, Worst First Thumball designs. We salute the fine educators committed to lifelong learning and improved communication for all.

New Thumball Catalogs Have Arrived

The new thumball catalog has three brand new Thumball designs inside for more conversation, language development and inter-personal interactions. Fuzzy Dice Designs created a fun, functional and fabulous catalog filled with detailed design descriptions, helpful tips to get the most out of your Thumball experience and sharp images. We are thrilled with the results and know our customers will be excited as well. Thumball Specials for back to school time will be coming soon!

Visit the website to view a pdf of the catalog.

Deficits in Early Infancy May Point to Autism in Pediatrics from MedPage Today:

Research in child development confirms that language and communication skills benefit from early intervention. Identification of early signs in infancy has great potential to identify and treat communication conditions earlier resulting in improved language development.

Can You Hand Me A Towel

Just out of reach
a hazy muffled
“I love you.”
hung in the air

wiping our after
shower mirror
the fog lifted
reflecting 499 pieces

a puzzled
forever left

Thanks to for Chance to Show Thumball at ASD

Answers In Motion exhibits Thumball to 30,000 retailers at ASD show in Las Vegas, nation's most comprehensive merchandise show Aug 8-11
Thumball is a game that creates conversation



A great writer once said
“With inspiration a poem can unfold
but to become great poetry show me the proof.”

more this; less that
reorder, rephrase, recite, replace

review, restate, repeat, retrace
again and again, we chanted:

proof to the North of Grammar and grace
proof to the East for punctuation and space

proof to the South all errors erase
proof to the West format it in place

proof it and praise it to all above
proof it and praise it to all below

the seventh proof turns it and twirls
upward, outward and into the world

denied or dignified; adored or abhorred
hugged, loved or given a shrug

rated, hated, debated
even cleverly imitated; matters not

the mark’s been made, it goes on without you
you may wistfully wish to write it anew

don’t fret, wait it out
be Dickinson about it

if needing reassurance check on it
you will find it over there
in the pudding

Mary Miller Pembleton
July 29, 2010

Live Well

Does your conversation often revolve around symptoms, diaganosis, conditions and complaints? Are you fearful, frustrated by inadequate treatments, confused by too many treatmenst and over use of prescription drugs?

Illness is not a scary monster out there waiting to get you, instead it is inside of you and you have the power to send it packing.Truth be told only wellness is out there and in there and everywhere. Wellness is your natural state. Whether you let that abundant wellness flow is related to the internal vibration which is generated by thoughts and feelings about those thoughts.

New improved thoughts about any condition will create a shift in your body, they may be subtle or obvious, immediate or incremental. Take time to notice them and you will realize you are in control, you can heal yourself. Sure let the MDs help and take your time about all of this. This is not a race.

Abraham(from books by Jerry  and Esther Hicks) says "Don't get lost in the diagnosis, the medicine, or in the statistics about what somebody else did about it. If you don't feel good, it's because you're not thinking in a way that allows the Energy to flow....

You could just get really, really mad at someone you love and make every muscle in your body stiff. And you would ask,"Why does my body feel this way?" And we say, because you've had a Vibrational tug-of-war going on...

Stop looking for anything other than your mental and emotional state of being as answers to why you feel how you feel in your body. It is all Vibrational - no exception! And when you get that, then it doesn't matter what diagnosis has been given to you - it doesn't matter - it's temporary."

Wellness is always there, make it easier for it to stay, remove any obstacles(negative thoughts, believing what other people tell you, etc) that impede the flow. Know with unshakable faith that feeling bad and living in a medical drama is not necessary.

Think, speak and act in ways of confidence, clarity and wellness. Practice this new ideal and be amazed by the undeniable results of healthy thinking. Embrace freedom, enjoy wellness and express your true self.

Awesome Thumball Review at

Savvy users of technology will learn about Thumball, the ball for learning and improving inter-personal communication skills at  Jenny Williams posted a super review and explained the product with clarity and finesse. Will the mounting evidence that our recent submersion in technology can reduce effective social skills increase readers interest in a fun interactive product that stimulates conversation and positive social interaction. Answer Mania Thumball indicates " Yes! It is in the stars".

The Battalion - Social skills affect success

The Battalion - Social skills affect success
Technology is decreasing face to face interactions.... consciously creating communication opportunities and pro-social skill reinforcement is essential. Let's talk more, inspire others, boost confidence and verbally convey a message with ease. Those that balance effective use of current technological advances with strong inter-personal skills will succeed in the business world of tomorrow.

More Than Just A Ball: Catch A Conversation

Go beyond a game of catch with Thumball. Utilizing the brain-based principles of novelty, motivation, interaction and movement Thumball makes learning more fun! Thumballs are pleasingly squeezable balls with imprinted panels. Throw it. Catch it. Discuss what is written under your right thumb.

Want to improve listening and speaking skills while building vocabulary? 
  • Select Category Mania Thumball or move Your Body Thumball
Need to promote self awareness and discuss feelings in an easy effective way?
  • Select Emotion Mania Thumball or virtues and Values Thumball
Have to get acquainted quickly and easily?
  • Select Who Are You for kids and Icebreaker Thumball for teens and adults
Eager to teach youngsters early learning skills?
  • Select Numbers Thumball, My ABCs Thumball, Animals Thumball 
  • and Shapes Thumball
 Want to make a business training or workshop more interactive?
  • Select Meet and Greet Thumball or Best,Worst First Thumball
Having a get together or family gathering?
  • Select Entertainment Talk Thumball
Thumball is the only ball that can do all this and more. Improve social skills, learn concepts, stimulate conversation and share memories with Thumball. The premiere tool used by trainers, educators, parents and leaders to maximize communication opportunities
Easy to play! Inexpensive! Fun! Competition free! With over twenty designs there is a Thumball for every age to meet any need. Thumball Gets Everybody Talking!
Catch a Conversation!

Thumball Helps Today's Most Valued Attributes To Grow

"The post-industrial economy is indifferent to men's size and strength. The attributes that are most valuable today — social intelligence, open communication, and ability to sit still and focus — ..." Hmmmm, can Thumball help with this? I vote YES. Interesting article below but not the "End of Men" but more the evolution of men and women. The key really is to learn to actively listen to others, check that you understood the message, ask questions to expand the conversation and provide an accepting attitude of their opinions. Not easy to do but a valuable strategy to practice.

The Farmer's Market

rolled one by one
to the crooked table's edge
sticky blood oranges
hanging on
one breath away
from free fall
a drop shot
their downfall

no one seems to notice
i don't know how much longer
they can hold on
perched there
on such a very

may push them off myself
save them the humiliation
when with
one good squeeze
quicker than a startled gasp
if the lights go out
eyes close
and they get blamed
for the strange
flowing into

Spring Fever Summer Love

only ever lasts about three days
the spring green hue i long to capture
want to crawl inside the new growth
curl up, stay forever

about three days you remind me
the longest I wait
before imagining a problem or
registering some complaint

once young determined buds
a long weekend and we fell
knew all the answers
far from tailored lawns and traffic circles

freed on the cement leaving town
got chills seated in the sun's full rays
hair flying in dandelion wind
blaring down the pike

called you Rexy, to you I was Lou
past the motorcycle bars playing blues
beer specials so cheap you can't imagine
how they make any money at all

to the dune's edge into jellyfish waves
tawny skin splashing
slicing safely in spaces in between
never getting stung, not once

wide salty rimmed eyes
reckless, undressed, burned red
bright lights, were there sirens?
with a wild howl we lept off that train bridge

up early today listening for birds
to call our names
maybe dig up some worms
take out the boat, go fishing

the dew covered garden glows
effervescent lime shoots reaching
through mud and dreams
seeds of teenage madness sprouting

Mary Pembleton
June 29, 2010

Ode To A Thumball

when bodies move, learning improves
where listening grows, collaborations flow
as creativity is ignited, participants get excited
communication is enhanced, social interactions advance
it's a Thumball celebration
come join the conversation

Better Speech and Hearing Month

May is the month for blooming flowers and Better Speech and Hearing Month. A chance to celebrate and grow all forms of communication and interpersonal connections. Speech therapy originated to help people articulate sounds more accurately to improve understanding by others. Now speech therapy includes reading, writing, listening, speaking, thinking and social skill development. Communication skills are key to everything and as we develop we advance our skills we all become model examples for others.

Consider your own communication, what are your strengths(good vocabulary, attentive listener, effective writing skills)? What could you improve upon( speaking slower; louder; quieter, remembering details, understanding figures of speech)?

What about the ideas you communicate to yourself about yourself. Do you send messages of love, approval, strength, optimism? Affirming yourself, your life and your blessings is a great way to communicate positive energy and the benefits will bloom all around you.

Celebrate MAY: Better Speech/Hearing Month! 15% off your entire order. Enter BSHM15 in the Discount Box at checkout

Lennon Lives

there is
nothing to forgive
nothing is really wrong
Peace lives right here right now for all
John's song

Truck Stop Candy

I know, I know, I have to stop
everyone keeps telling me
it's dangerous
anything could happen
why would you take a risk like that
But I'm still doing it

my neural by-ways are crowded
my synaptic blue highways filled
vagabonds, gypsies
dust covered nomads
just standing there smiling
on the edge of the road
all of them hitchhiking
never sure to where

this mind of mine
always slowing down
pulling over
picking them up
taking them where ever they want to go
what can I say
I'm a generous soul
interested in helping others

they give me great ideas sometimes
and sure are good listeners
the backpacked guys
the girls all dressed in layers
share interesting perspectives
some are world travelers
they seem to love my stories
say my poems are the best they've heard
ask why I'm not published
assure me they would buy my work

we stop for snickers bars and gum
toss out all the empty cups
maybe they see my humble genius
they never want to say Good Bye
give me hugs, take my picture
thank me endlessly
nice characters all
such enthusiasm
can't have anything
to do with
that twenty
I palmed them
when they got
inside the truck

on the entrance ramp
I see white t-shirts
a friendly looking couple
thumbing a ride
let me see
if I can
help them out

Live It

Rip off the Wrapping
Life is A Gift

Play With Passion
Life is a Game

Laugh Till it Hurts
Life is Funny

Share Everything
Life has Enough

Sing like a Rock Star
Life is A Song

Ask Any Question
Life has the Answer

Create a Masterpiece
Life is a Work of Art

Have Cake and Eat it Too
Life is a Party

Be willing to get Wet
Life is an Underwater Wonder

Go on Safari
Life is a Daring Adventure

Get a PhD
Life is fascinating

Life is Your Limosine
It will take you anywhere you tell it to go

Daily Double

books back to front
I know answers first, but
like Jeopardy, can speak only

beach bum

I went to the water
today I swear
I tasted quiet
inhaled tender
calm as a clam
amid seas of commotion
resisting any movement at all
the waves carrying me
long distances
along the shore line

my breath
in charge
each flawless
stroke cutting
with telescopic precision
moving silently forward
covering a lot of ground
without suspicion
on course
I'm identical
remain the same
in place where i started
not even wet
the sun unmoved
across the sky
it seemed like that
to ice cream licking
sun glassed friends
close kin

New Vues

rose colored? clear?
one black forbidding patch
to wear? our gut sees better than

tortilla moon

tortilla moon

wild breath in my chest drawing me westward
magical wind swept tales told
7,000 feet high on cold creek wine

pudding soft arroyo steps
leading me in ways of elders and remarkable men
powered by thought and around 10,000 waves

the journey begins by finding
prisms in quartz veins
sponsored by The Shooting Star Illuminations™Co.

doughnut-glazed eyes try to concentrate
as sun drenched summits wave
wagging packs of pups approach

well used guitars everywhere
friends share all comforts
encourage untamed investigations into faces, stories, spaces

late winter climbs to hot spring pockets where no one ever minds waiting
it's about creatively mating with all life experiences
(this one guy waited for us in the Jemez Valley like literally all night and next morning was still smiling)

lick a lace agate slice
mold pots of sweet cherry clay
hang freedom weavings from roadside stands

is your devotion just a passing phase?
check the schedule
the train is pulling out of the station

at all the festivals, roasting pinon wood
over heating sun-ripened cheeks
every native wolf howling

pulse racing as vivid colors cast spells
get lots more drinking water
such passions can be dehydrating

damn chile cravings again
of all the places on this earth
blood mountain and moonscape.... really?

Santa Fe we need to talk,
time has come for me
to do my own cooking,
kick things up a notch,
pump my own heart


You get a glaze, that far away stare, where you go I'm unaware
But you can trust me babe I swear, I long to know your thoughts and cares
You are my life, my answered prayer

Just snuggle up and settle in
set your face against my chin
and talk to me about anything

The internet or foreign affairs, fashion, cooking, cleaner air
talk to me in our love worn chair
we are a pair, a union rare

Who's the latest billionaire, new ways to play solitaire,
every thought in your heart so fair
please tell me what you want to share

Your speech so sweet within that grin
we've been together through thick and thin
come talk to me about anything

Precious jewel, light filled and rare
nothing, no one could ever compare
my life, my love, my answered prayer

Truth Chowder

Wake up the alarm is ringing
Wake up the birds are singing
Wake up, wake up, it's naked
honest truth I'm bringing

In your eyes shines the sun
Your smile starts the fun
In your laugh I come undone
In our arms we become one

Truth time feels so fine
Truth time yours and mine
Yeah, it's about truth and
it's about time

It's you singing in my heart
on your mark, get set, it's time to start
It's you dancing in my mind
glory how you make me shine
It's you living in my soul
your perfect love has made me whole

Truth time feels so fine
Truth time yours and mine
Yeah, it's about truth and
it's about time

Evening Omlettes

all of these fragile longings
return each year at flower time
they ride on the underside
of whispers inside rising prayers

my remembrance of lying
on your spring shadow's length
knowing the time's come
for scattering dream seeds
into honeysuckle winds
where rivers run, love flows
all that remains
is skin brushing skin
the setting light
within your eyes

Campfire Cooking

Cricket's lullaby rocks me sound asleep,
the dream does all the work
I hear prayers of thanks echo through
earth's universal church

Light a candle, plant a tree
Build an altar to truth and dignity
Birth the song life longs to hear
Sing each word, release all fear

Such joyous, glorious gifts resound in infinity
Now I am
complete again
with all you've given me

Self respect, new eyes to see
a poet's voice, creativity
A jigsaw puzzle to complete
United hands insert the final piece
Now I am complete again with all you've given me

Break Up Blues in 3 Parts

You Left
your shoes behind
the couch bought together
before our love was canceled by
Cold Feet

You Said
I live waiting
for fairy tale princes to 
come true, I still believe,
he's just...
Not You

grab tear soaked sheets
hung dripping. Sun warms them
now only one swollen heart
to dry

Awakening's Coffee

Yawn song once the tune I crooned, in bed midnight clear through noon

Avoided sunlight, dark Ray Bans on, back to bed, all dreams are gone

Lived this life waiting and seeing, forgot my part in creating my being

No real rest restrained in tangled flannel, despondently surfing TV's countless channels

Lived this life waiting and seeing, forgot my part in creating my being

Then a voice not heard before hummed a soothing song, urging me, encouraging me,
"Come out and greet the dawn."

A bath of glowing skylight washed away life's misery,
this sleeping soul now shouting endless possibilities.

Love's awakening in me, inviting kind discovery
Loves awakening in me, answers every mystery
Love's awakening in me, life's joyful opportunities
Eternal bliss, forever freed, love's awakening in me

green chile home

in stunning red rock splendor,
mountains share her timeless pleasure
drumming, dancing, ancient ways,
sacred chants, fragrance sage

symphonies grow deep within earth,
heralding time's creative worth
raven's cry, a transforming song,
three tribes gathered, zesty and strong

pure crystal air, lets breath expand
blue sky kisses, etched canyon land,
santa fe trail, high desert sand,
lost my heart there, come take my hand


a chance
one open chute
our leap of faith to share
we jump, fly free, trust, let it be
the key

Made With Love

A breeze reminding me, of all the dreams that had blown through
my heart, these arms, this property.

Even started to believe, I owned an undisputed monopoly
in heartbreak's vast community.

Never bothered making a house feel like a home, no painting walls,
hanging shelves, brightening up dingy halls.

Waiting on love's fix-it man to perform each act,
fill my frames, take the blame, call my name, light the flame.

When I grew to recognize I can be my own landlord,
did love then come and made a claim of it's own accord

Cleaned ceiling to floor, then a knock on my door
Your first words, my heart's reward;
"In you I see beauty waiting to be born."

We've carpeted this household with goodness plush and new
the beams are strong, the rooms now filled with the best of me and you

Kissing morning sky, baking passion pie
one lush girl, one fine guy, healthy gardens growing high

Now if I know anything about love, it's all because of you
Building our life, living our joy, the work we love to do
Yes if I know anything about love it's all because of you

spring break

in snow leave tracks
sun removes icy edges
they melt away my path to past

Wine Song

The tune came from your tall trees swaying in the breeze
Notes grew out of mountains, powerful, serene

Sentiments to choose and blend, add a melody to send
keeping time until the end, loyal lyrics for a friend

To share them is a choosing, to deny would be a sin
A gift come time for showing, no concern for lose or win

Spirit agrees, cheers with glee, voices rise in key
perfect pitch in harmony, creativity set free

Joyful noise to hear, rich with sweat and tears
encores far and near, now the way is clear

A song to offer bare and bold, holy chant like days of old
conductor of our voice and soul, ancient truth to have and hold

cherries jubilee

cherry blossom trunk
draped in velvet robes,
cotton candy flakes sugar Asian roots
entrancing grove's fleeting
flower frosting

blackbird braided branches
faintly drumming,
bowed heads gently march, sit upon her strands
richest pink silk spilling
sacred secrets

crisp cedar heats noses
soft moonlight melting
frozen tears leave a love sheen on spring cheeks
cascading shivers, sudden sky thunder, all at once
satisfying hunger

The Real Thing

We went shopping for new dishes but I can't imagine why
We never share a supper, it's in our cars we dine

It's like we live in different places, body, soul and mind
Our point of view's grown jaded, the table turned to lies.

Did we see it coming? Could we have redirected fate?
Questions so important, have they come a time too late?

Now we're looking for real love, the truest kind of mate
I think I might just know someone, let me set up the date,

She'll be wearing boots of leather, waiting patiently at Eight
A man she likes in denim and she loves to stay out late.

Forget about impressions, for true heart is all she longs
I know this woman will like you, just sing that Beatles song.

Did I fail to mention she looks a lot like me?
Just looking for some real love to shake us to our knees.

Real love, the real thing, a dance on angel's wings
Looking for that real love only our two hearts can bring.

Grace Gumbo

Placed a special order from the local take out place,
one heaping helping plateful of a little thing called Grace

I've heard it called God's wilderness, a very sacred space
but no one I know has some or has even had a taste

The source some say "Abundant", no shortages exist
But my diner must have just run out for the board says "86"

I'm starving for it's peacefulness, hungry for it's care
Certain it's an ingredient in a breath of mountain air

A faint recalled aroma, the incense of a prayer
Perhaps it is a tidbit of the love the world once shared

Let's cater a private party and dance and dine and sing
Graced in robes of majesty, at the feast where all are King

Stunned Onion(Country Song Waiting for Keith Urban To Record)

Regular night out with the crowd, no big plans just hanging around
Beers and burgers, onions and fries, when to my shock and utter surprise...
a vision in white went swaying by and my oh my the shimmer, the shine
Dear God she is sublime, my dear you have left me stunned

Looking like a deer caught in headlights all ablaze
Almost fell right over when I saw you catch my gaze
What in the world has just begun? Have I completely come undone?
I'm stunned. You shot me with Love's gun, left me dazed, speechless, amazed, I'm stunned

Is this the lottery I just won? How did I get to oblivion?
Your eyes, your smile can't be outdone. Sexy and smart yet still homespun
What can I say, my heart's overrun.
I'm stunned. You shot me with Love's gun, left me dazed, speechless, amazed, I'm stunned

Now you say you feel the same, well blessed be, I sing in praise
Let no one tell you dreams don't come around, it's me in a tux, you in a gown
A vision in white swaying by and my oh my the shimmer, the shine
Dear God it's sublime I am, I am, I am just stunned

Companion Tea

he made a cup of tea from rain barrel water
fresh chamomile, set it on the sill to steep
reaching for the clover honey thought he heard the grass growing
decided to check and see,
stepping out into moist night air
discovering instead a tiny sparrow chick, broken winged, quite sick
found an eye dropper and with delicate embrace spent the evening
under moonlight sharing comradely tea in tall green grass
between earthbound creatures wanting only to be, in flight and free
more tea?

Love's Cocoa Mug

the warmest love complete with hug, the kindest mind, the clearest signs
the truth be told my honest soul, safe so safe, I blend and meld
within the arms of love I'm held

what better place exists? where else would you chose to be?
given now the gift of gifts to sweetly go with me
bundled warm, safe and snug, wrapped in Love's perpetual hug

I promise you and all to see, forevermore you'll be with me
safe, secure, loved and free, embraced my love you'll always be

all needs met, desires fulfilled, your perfect self, our perfect will
each day born fresh and new, never alone, my promise to you
bundled warm, safe and snug, wrapped in Love, God's perpetual hug

Divinity Dive

Last night's moonlight swallowed me whole, In the surprise and splendor I discovered my goal
In shimmering sky light old ideas drown, life's complications spiraled into dry ground

No longer afraid of the brightness in light, no longer confused by the mysteries of life
No longer asleep when there's so much to see, the dream is alive, the truth' inside me

Swimming with purpose, splashed with Love's shine, One blessed connection, Life's heart and mine
No one can steal it or chase it away, Together forever, forever we"ll stay

I awoke in dawn's company warm, dry and alive
Without hesitation into Love's flood I dive


The diner conversation dusty, my mind much too turkey sleepy, until your innocent query
"More?", a simple offer of chardonnay, my response alarming, unexpected
"Yes! More! More of wine, song and merriment. More of art, dance and sentiment
More of diving into wonderment, yes, more, more living, more love."

The guests now nervously fork chasing the meal's last remains
You calmly tipping the bottle, nodding in reply
"We share this word in common, you, your heart and mine
Yes, more, more adventure and exploring. More of friendship with adoring
More of me to do your pouring, yes, more, more living, more love."

Born to this yearning, flaming and burning, passionately churning, more
The foregone answer to the bakery fresh ply of hot country biscuits
butter piled pyramid high, melt with me, then let's make more.

Heaven Sorbet

there are no separate rooms in heaven, there are no rooms at all
no squares, no boxes, no closets to hide in,
no locks to keep anyone out

no heaven is quite diffferent, a circular place, all white and blue
warm and inviting, wet and swirling, a shining bay of bubbles with
enough room for all

in our hearts is a piece of heaven, harmony lives there
as does humor, the heat of passion, hard work and
every expression of love

we know it is heaven when we hold another in an hour of need
forgive the unforgivable, hit our knees with hard and fast faith,
heal with just a word or touch

step into heaven on earth, the water is just fine

Ripe Love Smoothie

Hungry and searching for the very same dish
Something sweet and natural, a fresh fruit salad kiss

Teach me ways of mangoes, pluck cherries from the stems
Choose the biggest bunch of banans, peel away the skins

Plump plants, blossoms round
Better than candy, the sweetest taste found

Harvest time, no more wishing
Love is ripe, come time for picking

The fruit on the vine, trusting and growing
One Great Tree of Life, all loving, all knowing

Be Bold-Share Poems

In honor of National Poetry Month and unafraid to wear my heart on my sleeve, I will post one poem each day in April 2010. Written long ago, they deal with the essential themes of love, loss and the pursuit of a deeper connection with God. They help me see how far I have come in many ways and included are poems, cinquains, even, song lyric possibilities (listen for the country twang in some).
Each title references a food or drink and the total creates a Menu of sorts, my dinner with the Divine. My hope is others will take a leap and share their creative talents. Together we could create a community of self-expression to benefit all. Yes some pieces are cheesey-Mc-Extra Cheesey Fries but what the heck I love cheese fries.

It's The Thought That Counts

When you give to others you are truly giving to yourself. If you give with resentment or fear or jealousy you are giving those emotions to yourself and your own life. If you give with love, compassion, generosity, and joy those feelings will manifest in your experience.

What should we do when your business and every dollar made is reinvested into the business immediately leaving no funds to share, no ability to buy and give. This is when creativity must be developed and used. Remember the giving is about the sentiment behind it, the old adage "It's the thought that counts." was a not a clever way to be cheap it is the true reality of gift giving.

Instead of a store bought gift you can give others confidence by reinforcing to them the talents they may have forgotten they possess, "I love the way you organize and design your home, I feel calm and happy when I am here with you."

Give your heart with compassion and truth. Give your acceptance for the ways things are not the way your mind thinks they should be. Give your time, sit with a sick friend, volunteer and if you can't even leave the house visualize those you care about in their best light, see them glowing and expanding and feeling the love you are sending their way.

Give your creativity and share the ideas your fearful mind says are stupid or corny or too sentimental. Give, give, give and notice if life is feeling dull or invigorating, do you feel drained or energized, are you in a state of peace or fear.

Never give out of "obligation" again knowing it does not serve you or them. Give because you can feel yourself growing and evolving into an even greater version of yourself. Give because you deserve it. We are all connected on every level so to give to yourself is to give to the universe and the universe is created through thought so yes the thought really counts, really.

Albert Knows A Thing OR Two

“If you can't explain it simply, you don't understand it well enough -Albert Einstein
 I will never tire of recommending frequent and thorough comprehension checks whether at home, work or school. It is most vital with students with special needs such as ADHD, Autism, Learning Disabilities, Communication Impairments or delays or disruptions in the developmental process.
What can we do as parents, educators, trainers and employers to improve the learning and recall process?

1. Create a safe atmosphere to make mistakes and ask for help.
2. Ask learner to say back what was just said to know if message is getting through.
3. Break directions and concepts into shorter chunks.
4. Ask how they would teach the material.
5. Ask what is harder or easier to understand about the material.
6. Ask why this information is important to know.
7. Give examples of the practical application of what you are covering.
8. Make corrections with kindness, emphasizing that it is in making mistakes that we often learn the most.
9. Make mistakes often(play dim)and ask student to correct you in the way they would appreciate being corrected.
10. Discuss study techniques often and whether they learn more from rewriting notes, hearing the material multiple times, telling someone the material, highlighting key points etc.

Learning happens in every moment of every day and optimizing each moment will result in better comprehension, improved recall, more love of learning and perhaps increased self esteem. Albert felt good about himself especially when he made mistakes. He was also the consummate teacher always striving for learners to ultimately become their own teacher at heart.

“I never teach my pupils; I only attempt to provide the conditions in which they can learn.” Albert Einstein

Thumball™ Rockin NY Toy Fair 2010

The best time of year is here again, February, when it is cold and snowy and time to share hearts, flowers and TOYS. The biggest and best toy expo in the world is held each year at the Javitz Center in New York City and classic, innovative and new toys are presented for all to see.

Thumball is now being exhibited by Talicor Inc,[name_like]=thumball&x=14&y=14 a top quality toy distributor of educational, communication, Christian and family games. They will be in Booth #313this year displaying the Thumball line of products and introducing new designs. A chance for more retailers to learn about Thumball, the simple game that gets great results. Over and over in the news are discussions about the fading art of verbal communication and social skills. A simple game of Thumball gets people talking, interacting and behaving at their best.

"The Ball" was recently admitted into the Toy Hall of Fame because it is a universally understood object of fun and recreation. Thumball improved on that concept by adding key words, phrases and questions to the ball which stimulate conversation and promote learning in a playful way. Parents, teachers and leaders in every field are excited by a simple toy that does so much more than just encourage toss and catch.

It may be cold every February and Toy Fair attendees rarely get to be home with their loved ones on Valentine's Day but the love of new business and dynamic products like Thumball keep them coming back every year for the fun and opportunities that abound.

Truth Time: It's About Truth and It's About Time

2010 is starting off well for us at Answers In Motion and our star product Thumball. Customers are coming to us from big business in search of ways to improve the office atmosphere. Administrators and teachers need a way to make parents more comfortable at school events; Educators report that "Our students are crazy about playing Thumball and knowing they will get to play motivates them and improves their classroom behavior." All this from a ball? Yes! Proving again that sometimes truth is stranger than fiction.

Everywhere I look, everywhere I go I see more and more honesty coming through from friends, family and colleagues. Less of trying to get over on someone for a better deal and more about establishing relationships based on trust. The economic conditions still touch our company daily with our buyers needing more time to pay. We talk with them about it and when they are direct and honest and forthright we can't help but say Yes. At times this puts our own business at risk but then the magic happens and a new order arrives or an old unpaid invoice appears and is paid promptly. Fear holds us back from trusting but every time I take the risk it pays off. Sometimes the wait for that return is longer than we like but we stay the course and remain in our own truth.

President Obama stated some difficult truths during the State of The Union address further setting the tone for an outstanding new year, The Year of Truth and the growth from that alone will improve hearts, minds and ultimately the economy. And that's The Truth.

More Conversation Starters Requested: New Thumball Designs Answer The Need

Answers In Motion announces three new Thumball designs in production and available in March 2010. Trainers, teachers, parents and counselors requested more designs that encourage people to share personal stories and reflect on life experiences. Creators Mary and Gregg Pembleton agreed that the more we know about each other, the more we can understand each other.
  • Entertainment Talk encourages players to discuss and share ideas about books, film and television.
  • Best, Worst First allows players to share stories about events such as weddings or job interviews and choose to tell about their first, best or worst experience on that subject.
  • People, Places and Things offers open-ended Who, Where and What questions to stimulate creative thinking and interesting discussions.
Our retailers are excited to increase their Thumball offerings. Human Resource trainers, elder-care staff, special education teachers and families are eager to use the new Thumballs at work, school and home to get everybody talking, laughing and sharing a piece of themselves while learning about others.

What's A Cathedral Got To Do With Me? The Invisible Mom

*Invisible Mother...... *

It all began to make sense, the blank stares, the lack of response, the way one of the kids will walk into the room while I'm on the phone and ask to be taken to the store. Inside I'm thinking, 'Can't you see I'm on the phone?'
Obviously, No one can see if I'm on the phone, or cooking, or sweeping the floor,
or even standing on my head in the corner, because no one can see me at
all. I'm invisible. The invisible Mom . Some days I am only a pair of hands,
nothing more: Can you fix this? Can you tie this? Can you open this?

Some days I'm not a pair of hands; I'm not even a human being. I'm a clock to ask, 'What time is it?' I'm a satellite guide to answer, 'What number is the Disney Channel?' I'm a car to order, 'Right around 5:30, I was certain that these were the hands that once held books and eyes that studied history and the mind that graduated sum a cum laude - but now they had disappeared into the peanut butter, never to be seen again. She's going; she's going; she is gone!

One night, a group of us were having dinner, celebrating the return of a friend from England .. Janice had just gotten back from a fabulous trip, and she was going on and on about the hotel she stayed in.
I was sitting there, looking around at the others all put together so well. It was hard not to compare and feel sorry for myself. I was feeling pretty pathetic, when Janice turned to me with a beautifully wrapped package, and said, 'I brought you this.'
It was a book on the great cathedrals of Europe .. I wasn't exactly sure why she'd given it to me until I read her inscription: /'To My Dear Friend, with admiration for the greatness of what you are
building when no one sees.' /

In the days ahead I would read - no, devour - the book. And I would discover what would become for me, four life-changing truths, after which I could pattern my work:
No one can say who built the great cathedrals - we have no record of their names. These builders gave their whole lives for a work they would never see finished. They made great sacrifices and expected no credit. The passion of their building was fueled by their faith that the eyes of God saw everything.

A legendary story in the book told of a rich man who came to visit the
cathedral while it was being built, and he saw a workman carving a tiny
bird on the inside of a beam. He was puzzled and asked the man, 'Why are
you spending so much time carving that bird into a beam that will be
covered by the roof? No one will ever see it.' And the workman replied,
'Because God sees' I closed the book, feeling the missing piece fall into place.

It was almost as if I heard God whispering to me, 'I see you. I see the
sacrifices you make every day, even when no one around you does. No act
of kindness you've done, no sequin you've sewn on, no cupcake you've
baked, is too small for me to notice and smile over. You are building a
great cathedral, but you can't see right now what it will become.'
At times, my invisibility feels like an affliction. But it is not a disease that is erasing my life.
It is the cure for the disease of my own self-centeredness. It is the antidote to my strong, stubborn pride.
I keep the right perspective when I see myself as a great builder. As one of the people who show up at a job that they will never see finished, to work on something that their name will never be on.
The writer of the book went so far as to say that no cathedrals could ever be built in our lifetime because there are so few people willing to sacrifice to that degree.

When I really think about it, I don't want my son to tell the friend
he's bringing home from college for Thanksgiving, 'My Mom gets up at 4
in the morning and bakes homemade pies, and then she hand bastes a
turkey for three hours and presses all the linens for the table.' That
would mean I'd built a shrine or a monument to myself. I just want him
to want to come home. And then, if there is anything more to say to his
friend, to add, 'you're going to love it there.'

As mothers, we are building great cathedrals. We cannot be seen if we're doing it right.
And one day, it is very possible that the world will marvel, not only at what we have built, but at the beauty that has been added to the world by the sacrifices of invisible women.

Great Job, MOM! Share this with all the Invisible Mom s you know...*I just did.*
Hope this encourages you when the going gets tough as it sometimes does..
We never know what our finished products will turn out to be because of our perseverance.
Erin Burgdorf <>