Friday, December 31, 2010

Wishing you Peace and Joy in the coming new year!

I hope that all who read this will find Peace, Joy and much Love in the coming new year.

May God keep you all in His care :)

x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x x

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Peter Pan - the lost boy

We are dealing with Peter Pan at this point of our module and, due to my fluctuating health, I'm way behind everyone else. This panicked me for a while, but I realised that I've got all this holiday break to be able to catch up. 
Yet another reason to be grateful that I stepped away from all the madness of this season! Lol

It's been really interesting to read the critics about Peter Pan, and my eyes have been opened to a lot more aspects concerning both the play, and it's creator, J. M. Barrie.

My whole experience of Peter Pan, had been the story read to me as a child, and then learning to read it myself, and then I saw the 2003 film after it was released. These didn't prepare me for reading the original play script, and it amazed me how differently it was conceived by it's author, and how the passing of time has changed the aspects of it's viewing.

I've a feeling that the Disney viewpoint is a much more powerful one to children today although, as it was originally written as a pantomime, and now enjoys a repeat performance as such every winter, that is something fixable - although I suspect that there are a lot more children familiar with the film than have ever had a chance to see the play!

At the beginning of this block in the module, we dealt with a whole section on poetry, and I was reunited with quite a few of my childhood favourites, in the book needed for the module, 100 Best Poems.
One of the poems, The Fairies, written by William Allingham in 1850, is one that I need to use in my next TMA and, on reading it, I could see why it was being used for comparison and contrast with Peter Pan. I'm very much looking forward to using it, as it immediately caught my attention:

      The Fairies

Up the airy mountain
 Down the rushy glen,
 We daren't go a-hunting,
 For fear of little men;
 Wee folk, good folk,
 Trooping all together;
 Green jacket, red cap,
 And white owl's feather.
Down along the rocky shore
 Some make their home,
 They live on crispy pancakes
 Of yellow tide-foam;
 Some in the reeds
 Of the black mountain-lake,
 With frogs for their watch-dogs,
 All night awake.

 High on the hill-top
 The old King sits;
 He is now so old and gray
 He's nigh lost his wits.
 With a bridge of white mist
 Columbkill he crosses,
 On his stately journeys
 From Slieveleague to Rosses;
 Or going up with music,
 On cold starry nights,
 To sup with the Queen,
 Of the gay Northern Lights.

 They stole little Bridget
 For seven years long;
 When she came down again
 Her friends were all gone.
 They took her lightly back
 Between the night and morrow;
 They thought she was fast asleep,
 But she was dead with sorrow.
 They have kept her ever since
 Deep within the lake,
 On a bed of flag leaves,
 Watching till she wake.

 By the craggy hill-side,
 Through the mosses bare,
 They have planted thorn trees
 For pleasure here and there.
 Is any man so daring
 As dig them up in spite?
 He shall find the thornies set
 In his bed at night.

 Up the airy mountain
 Down the rushy glen,
 We daren't go a-hunting,
 For fear of little men;
 Wee folk, good folk,
 Trooping all together;
 Green jacket, red cap,
 And white owl's feather.
        William Allingham (1850)

With the themes of fairies, magic, and abductions, it's a good poem to use, and I look forward to doing so :)

One poem I discovered in the book, was  Blake's 'Tyger, Tyger Burning Bright' - a poem that fascinated me as a child, and which I still love today, so it was fortunate that I had to buy the book for the module - it was so comforting to be reunited with a childhood memory! :)

Thursday, December 09, 2010

And the results are in . . .

I had a phone call yesterday, from a fellow student in my tutorial group, and she told me the results are in for our latest TMA so, with great trepidation, I went online to have a look.

I expected to have a similar result to my first TMA but, to my  delighted amazement, I'd managed to score a massive 85%!

In all the years I've been studying, I've only once got higher than that - I'd managed 2 x 88% passes for my first Creative Writing module - and I'm totally gobsmacked that I have managed to get such a high mark again - we're talking about a Pass 1 mark here, for a girl who fights to keep up with Pass 2 results!

After receiving my lowest score for my first TMA, it's made me so happy to get such a good result with this one, especially as my health has been appalling while doing it! 

When I think about it, the last time I got such brilliant results, was when my health was really bad, and I was struggling to keep up with the course!

Go figure . . .

Friday, December 03, 2010

And another TMA has gone!

I don't know whether it is age, or just the sheer fact of being so busy, but I couldn't believe that yet another month has flown by!

I crammed so much study into the last month, both secular and biblical, that I often didn't know whether I was coming or going - and frequently met myself going both ways {grin}

But, despite another bout of bad health, I was happy to be able to get my TMA02 off in time on Thursday, despite last-minute panics that I'd need to use an extension to finish it off.

I have to admit that I'm struggling a bit with this course. I'm not sure whether it's a lot tougher than I had expected, or whether its just a by-product of my illness, that makes it harder to comprehend, and retain, the knowledge that, at one time, would have been a doddle for me to absorb but, whatever the cause, the result is that I'm having to read, and then re-read, all the information needed for me to complete my TMA's.
And there's such a lot of information that needs absorbing with this course!

I've lost count of how many critics I've had to read for this TMA and, no doubt, as the course progresses, there will be even more!
I'm not really complaining of this (well - not much, anyway!) but I do find it hard that something I used to take for granted, has now become a bit of a chore for me to complete. But, despite this, I really do enjoy the process of learning new things, and wouldn't dream of giving up so close to the finishing line.

I only have this course, and one more level 3, to do, and then, supposing I pass both of them, I will have achieved my BA (Hon) - with a lot of effort, and, no doubt, frequent pulling of hair, and gnashing of teeth - something every student is intimately familiar with at one time or another!

I'm not sure whether I'm looking forward to that time with gratitude that this marathon stint of learning will be over, or with regret that it is, but one thing's for sure, I'll still be pressing the button that means I've booked yet another course with the Open University - even if it's only a 10-pointer to keep my hand in!

There is something truly addictive about the process of learning new things - something I rediscovered when I started studying the Bible - and I don't think it's something that I'll ever want to stop!