Friday, 30 May 2014

Be the tortoise

It’s almost JUNE!

I know that means it’s close to the end of the school year, but guess what it also means? TRACK AND FIELD DAYS! I am so ready.

Well, almost ready. I’ve been practicing hard. In the winter, I ran on the treadmill to keep up my endurance. Now that the roads have cleared, I’m hitting the trails daily, and on the weekend, I’m lapping my Grandpa’s canola field (though some areas are still a bit muddy.)

But if I want to beat my personal best this year, I need to really pay attention to what I eat. Yeah, I know, you know ALL about nutrition. But it doesn’t hurt to refresh your memory. I know I need a good reminder.

The latest Chase “Superman” Duffy comic Cut! To the Chase… is jammed full of tips and tricks for healthy eating. The story is a modern retelling of the Tortoise and the Hare — you know, Aesop’s fable about an impatient hare that thinks he can win the race because he’s FAST. The moral of the story is “slow and steady wins the race.”

Well, in Cut! To the Chase…, the focus is on nutrition. Active kids, like me, should eat six grains, three dairy products, two meats (or meat replacements such as tofu), SEVEN servings of fruits and veggies, and two healthy fats, like canola oil. Sounds like a lot of food, right?

In the story, the hare eats mostly junk — like chocolate bars, chips, and soda, which are full of sugar and the WRONG kind of carbohydrates. While these foods can trick you into short bursts of energy, it’s not healthy overall, and the energy won’t sustain you. The tortoise (that’s me!) follows the advice of the school dietician.

So, who do you think wins the race? I guess you’ll have to read the book to find out. <grin>

Gotta jet! Time for some more practice!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 23 May 2014

Penny for your thoughts

I bet you thought there isn’t much you can do with pennies now that the Canadian mint has stopped making them, right?


Even though it’s been more than a year since production of the Canadian penny came to an end, most retailers still accept them as a form of payment and a recent study suggests the average Canadian has about $10 worth of pennies saved up. That’s a whole lot of thoughts…

I have a HUGE jar of pennies in my room. So I started researching WHAT I can do with them — and I actually found some cool ideas.

1. Roll them and cash them in at the bank — save the money, or buy something that’s been on my “list” for a while. I’m eyeing a new comic book, right now.
2. Donate them. The Tim Horton’s Children Foundation, Habitat for Humanity and many, many more charities would be happy to take your penny jars off your hands.
3. Make a wish — or a few. Fountains, ponds and wishing wells everywhere still take penny donations. Just make sure there aren’t any fish in the water. The copper in pennies can kill them.
4. Use them as a screwdriver in a pinch. I might even throw a couple in Grandpa’s toolbox.
5. Find pennies with your birthdate (or other special dates) and kick start your coin collection. Hey, someday that collection could be worth something.
6. Add a penny to your Mom’s tulip cuttings to stop the flowers from drooping.  I hear an old penny works best because of the copper content.
7. Lost your checkers pieces? Use pennies — heads or tails?

What other ideas can you come up with? Come on…a penny for YOUR thoughts… <grin>

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 16 May 2014

Dust off your helmet — it's bike season!

If you haven’t already, it’s time to dust off your bike and helmet and hit the trails — Spring is officially here.

Yeah, I know, it’s technically been Spring for a month now. But as traditional with Alberta weather, the threat of snow has kept some bikes locked up in the garage.

Wait no more!

Exciting, right?

Okay, but in all the excitement, don’t forget some basic biking safety precautions.

1. Before you head out, check your tire pressure, brakes, gears, lights, horns and reflective devices to make sure everything works — or ask an adult to help you with all those details.
2. Check your helmet to make sure it still fits. Wear a helmet — with the straps done up and everything. It could save your life!
3. Know your hand signals, and use them.
4. Ride on the right side of the road, with traffic, not against it.
5. If you’re heading out in the early morning, or coming home at dusk, wear bright clothing.
6. Map out your route and look for side streets or designated bike paths where possible.

May 16 is National Bike to Work Day, and although I’m heading to school — not work — I’ve mapped out a route my Dad and I. We’ll ride together until the half way mark and then he’ll go left and I’ll go right.

Let the season begin!

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 9 May 2014

Honouring MOM — With a cartoon!

You’d have to be a hermit to not realize THIS SUNDAY is Mother’s Day. If you weren't talking about it (or making crafts) in class, then for sure you’ve seen the signs at flower shops and chocolatiers. Not to mention every single commercial on TV. It’s exhausting.

I didn’t forget, of course, but this year I’m celebrating Mother’s Day with another significant event. Did you know that the first ever cartoon was published on May 9, 1754? That’s a LONG time ago — and look at how far they’ve come now! When my Dad takes me grocery shopping, he sometimes lets me choose an Archie. He read them when he was my age. They’re GREAT.

The only cartoonist I’ve ever met in person is James Grasdal. He’s a local artist who does lots of cartoon work AND illustrates all of the Chase “Superman” Duffy adventure comics. He’s so talented!

This weekend, I’m asking him to help me create a Mother’s Day cartoon for my mom and then I’ll turn it into a card or little booklet. Of course we’ll all have brunch this Sunday — but I’m super excited for my Mom to see my cartoon. Um, if James can help me figure out how to draw more than just a stick person. Wish me luck!

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 2 May 2014

How will YOU celebrate National Teacher's Day?

I can’t believe April — and the A-Z Blogging Challenge — is over. The month went by so fast, maybe even faster than Superman…

But, the great thing is, I (and you!) can go back and read those “writing” posts ANY time for inspiration, ideas, and advice. I know I will be as I continue working on my short story. Even though April was busy, I’ve made great progress.

This weekend, I’ll be scrolling through the internet (and my mom’s PInterest site) for some craft projects I can make to celebrate National Teacher’s Day on May 6. Not into crafts? That’s okay!

Here are a few other ideas you can use — and none of them include a hot glue gun. <grin>

1. Celebrate with the whole class and make cookies, or, bring in a bag of apples for everyone to share.
2. Write a short essay or poem for the teacher who has most inspired you. (I’m going to write a haiku for Mrs. Kratky — she’s my favourite!)
3. On twitter? The whole country will be using the #ThankaTeacher hashtag. Come up with a short sentence to thank your favourite teacher and use the hashtag. Maybe it will trend!
4. It’s gardening season. What about a package of flower seeds? You can add a note that says: Thank you for helping me bloom. (Or something.)
5. Get out your crayons and construction paper — sometimes, the best gift is a homemade card.

Good luck!

Okay, I gotta jet. Have a great weekend.

— Chase Superman Duffy