Memory Elephant Day 2014


Before going off for the annual Memory Elephant Day which is celebrated on 30 December the Memory Elephant helped me sum up the past year 2014 as recorded on Sprite’s Site blog

There were 62 posts on Sprite’s Site during 2014. Some of the subjects covered were:

January 10 posts

Columbus Cheetah Myth Buster series
February 3 posts
GHF Blog hop Staying motivated throughout the homeschooling year
De Bono’s 6 Action Shoes 9: One size shoe cover system

March 3 posts
GHF blog hop Homeschooling (and parenting) Gifted/2E kids into their TEENS and beyond
Best Australian Blogs series
April 9 posts
April Fools prank
Best Australian Blogs series
Autism Awareness month
Earth Day
GHF Blog Hop Promoting health and wellness in the gifted/2E child
May 4 posts
GHF Blog Hop Tips, Toys, Tricks and Tools for Gifted/2E Kids blog hop
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop The G word
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Gifted@Play
June 1 post
Gifted Awareness Week New Zealand 2014
July 4 posts
Donkeys live a long time series
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Summer reading
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Friendships

August 2 posts
Donkeys live a long time series
September 5 posts
GHF Blog Hop Giftedness – Why does it matter?
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Gifted – How?
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Gifted advocacy
The doll house
October 8 posts
Persona dolls
Lobster fest
GHF Blog Hop Gifted grown ups
Doggy classroom dynamics
November 8 post
52 Illustrations challenge
De Bono’s 6 Action shoes
GHF Blog Hop Finding your community
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Holiday gifts
December 5 posts
Persona dolls
GHF Blog Hop Parenting OEs, 2Es and everything in between
Hoagies Gifted Blog Hop Holiday gifts
Christmas preparations

Sprite and co. have enjoyed sharing with you this year and would like to wish all our readers a very happy, healthy, safe and prosperous 2015

After the GHF December Blog Hop


When I returned from the GHF December Blog Hop I found Sprite in a much better mood.

While she was taking her nap the Memory Elephant and the Giraffe had put up the Christmas lights and garlands.
The Dabrowski Dogs had defeated the Black Dogs in the chess match and the only sign of the Black Dogs was the greeting card and apology note on the pinboard.

The Dabrowski dogs were also too busy with other things to pester Sprite.
Psycho Motor had gone outside to bounce. Intellectual had gone to the library to investigate the background of various holiday traditions. Sensual was having a Lavender Lathers pamper session at the Paws for Poise grooming parlour bus.  
Emotional and Imaginational had gone to help with the Reading to Dogs program.
The Taste Tester dogs had sent a greeting card

The Twitter Bird carollers had begun rehearsing for their annual nativity play.
Oliver Moremouse and the other mice in the skirting boards were getting ready to celebrate.
Ginger Pony had been harnessed and was giving sleigh rides.

And the mystery of the vanished Christmas stockings/slippers had been solved. The Dabrowski Dogs had claimed them and hung them up hoping for some extra treats at Christmas time.

These are the blog posts I visited and the comments I left

Feeling Lighter ~ My Little Poppies (Cait Curley)
Everything is feeling lighter to me lately: parenting, homeschooling, even the holiday chaos. When I think back to this time last year, everything was just…well… heavier; life felt more challenging and stressful. What changed? In some respects, everything has changed.

My comment
I love your blog, Caitie! And so many of your descriptions bring back memories of our children at similar ages and our family life at those times!
Thank you for a beautifully written blog.
Wishing you all a very blessed and happy Christmas.

Gifted Children: Just Pulling the Wool Over Your Eyes ~ Raising Tall Poppies (Celi Trepanier)
With us sitting in the old, middle school desks and this teacher sitting in her chair facing us from in front of the class, she cocked back a bit with her arms folded across her chest and smugly announced with a truckload of retaliatory confidence and self-righteous pride, “oh, he is just pulling the wool over your eyes!”
My comment
Yes, I remember being told by a lady who had never met our children that one of them was ‘just saying/doing that to manipulate me’ and at first feeling bad because I thought she was right and then realizing that she was not right at all!
Thank you for a great blog, Celi!

Hawaiian Punch, Junk Food, and a (Holiday) Food Plan ~ A 2E Fox Revived (Carolyn Fox)

You need a (holiday) food plan to tackle the candy canes and eggnog. The sheer volume of sugary stuff and food dyes/additives/flavorings is a nightmare for many 2e parents/kids, imho, which is magnified 10x or more during the holidays.
My comment
Thank you for a great list of suggestions for combating the problems associated with sugar and colouring laden holiday foods.
Have a delicious holiday season!

I love Christmas BUT… ~ Sprite’s Site (Jo Freitag)
I suppose I should have predicted this happening in the build up to the holiday season; as it is a situation we have met before…

My comment
Just looking in to see how Sprite is feeling now…

Major Themes Related to My Research on Gifted/2E Kids and Bullying ~ RedWhiteandGrew (Pamela Price)
Many children may, when stressed, feel their overexcitabilties “fire up” in response. This can impede the logical, systemic calming down required for someone to address bullying by herself and gain a lasting, powerful sense of self-efficacy in the face of conflict. We need, as parents and educators, to work to help kids manage these OEs before a negative personal encounter. In short, we owe it to them to help develop their social skills in preparation for a negative encounter to build their resilience. We parents may also need to scaffold better socially those children who have OEs that are “off the charts,” managing their exposure to stressful or toxic situations or people and refrain from gaslighting them at the holidays.

My comment
Thank you, Pamela. I am looking forward to the publication of your book!
As Paula says you are giving an in depth approach to a difficult and far reaching topic.

Overexcitabilities and Asynchronicity and Perfectionism! Oh, My! ~Gifted Unschooling (Amy Harrington)

Some of the most overwhelming aspects of raising gifted children are all the quirks, idiosyncrasies and discrepancies in abilities. Without a thorough understanding of what overexcitabilities are and how they impact a child’s experience in the world, parents and others close to the child may contemplate attaching a pathological disorder to try and explain away the difficult behaviors and outbursts that unfold in daily life. To contemplate matters more, asynchronicity creates a layer of confusion when a child whose physical age, intellectual age and social-emotional age conflict with his chronological age concurrently and in any given moment. But, let’s not stop there kindred spirits. Until we sprinkle in a heavy dose of perfectionism, we haven’t even touched the surface of how complicated living with gifted children can be.
My comment
Great post, Amy! A really good clear discussion about the OEs, asynchronous development and perfectionism and how they affect the everyday lives of the gifted.

Parenting and OEs: Is Sensitivity Your Child’s Super Power? ~ Through a Stronger Lens (Nicole Linn)
On a regular basis, the members of the family alternate between high levels of emotion, the need to move, and a desire to learn and do everything as often as possible. We each have various levels of sensory comfort and discomfort, and there is no shortage of imagination. It can make life interesting.
My comment
The Emotional OE is indeed a super power! Lesley Sword calls Emotional Intensity the Energy that Drives the Gifted Intellect and Dr Linda Silverman in her article Dabrowski’s Theory rates Emotional as “perhaps most important of the overexcitabilities
I really enjoyed reading this post – thank you Nicole!

Parenting Reality in the Land of Willful Ignorance ~ Homeschooling Hatters (Care Martin)
Every so often we run into folks who just don’t get what life is like at our house. They have an image of what a “gifted child” is in their head, and when our life doesn’t match that image, obviously it is because none of us are gifted. I wish, fairly frequently, that our lives matched that image, but they just don’t. However, the fact that we aren’t all bookworms who enjoy studying, who raise their hands first, or who don’t have parties, but instead have Socratic Conversations over weekends, while engaged in high-profile careers which allow us to have a housekeeper, and incredibly flexible hours so we’re mostly paid to just think… Well, people seem to not realize that no, that’s not what gifted (much less 2E!) is. At least, not by and large
My comment
It can be really hard when onlookers just don’t understand asynchronous development and OEs!
Thank you for a great blog, Care!

Raising a Kid Who’s Just Like You ~ Your Rainforest Mind (Paula Prober)

What do you do when you’re excruciatingly sensitive, severely intense, outrageously curious, and wildly imaginative and you’re raising a kid who is JUST LIKE YOU? Do you– run away from home? Move to a state where marijuana is legal? Outsource your child to India? Create a reality TV show?
My comment
Love this post, Paula!
I did once write a series of posts about an imaginary reality show The Survivor – Gifted Island game -like a cross between Survivor, Big Brother, The Amazing Race and the show about the camp for badly behaved teenagers.
It is played by teams of one parent, one teacher and one gifted or 2E kid.
You don’t get voted off the Island – you just have to stay there and survive and everybody gets to watch how you cope and laugh or cry about it.

This is a commentary post on the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum December Blog Hop: Parenting OEs, 2Es and everything in between.

To read all the posts please visit      


I love Christmas BUT…


When I suggested going on the GHF December Blog Hop Parenting OEs, 2Es and everything in between Sprite said she could not come with me because she was too tired and she had too much to do.
She seemed a bit grumpy and out of sorts.
“What is the matter?” I asked

“I love Christmas BUT….” she said “there is so much stuff to do first!”

“You gave me the Christmas Planner and The Origami Secretary Bird handed me a great long list of things I have to do in the next  week and P’est Pour Parfait, the Perfectionist Poodle said they all had to be done perfectly.”

“Intellectual Dabrowski said I had to write all the Christmas cards in my best handwriting and make sure the spelling was all correct. He reminded me about the time I called Rob Head Rod Heab and made me feel bad about it”

“The Memory Elephant said if he had to remember all that he was going on strike unless he got paid overtime rates.


“So I forgot to get some of the materials I need for making presents and had to go all the way back again.”

“The weather was really bad and the shops were really crowded” she said “and Sensual Dabrowski kept on getting in my way and complained the whole time about the noise and the artificial lighting and the smells. He felt uncomfortable and itchy and that made me feel uncomfortable and itchy too.”


“Going all that way four times made me tired and sore and Wistful Black Dog said I would not have had any problems if I had remembered everything the first time.
And I couldn’t remember where I put the Christmas stockings I always wear as slippers at Christmas time and I could only find this one.”

“Emotional Dabrowski said that I was making a big fuss about what was really not a big problem. She said I should be grateful that I had saved enough pocket money to buy the materials I needed to make presents. She said some children don’t  have any slippers or presents or even enough to eat and we both cried about that.”

“Then I started to write the cards and Psycho Motor Dabrowski was distracting me by calling me to come outside and bounce with him and write the cards later. But I did not have enough energy left and I did not even want to do that.”


I suppose I should have predicted this happening in the build up to the holiday season; as it is a situation we have met before during last year’s November GHF Blog Hop


“When I saw the shadow of Black Dog jumping out of the Origami Secretary Bird’s To Do List” Sprite continued “I realised I needed to take your advice about controlling the Black Dogs.”
“I did the H.A.L.T. check and found that I was Hungry – so I had afternoon tea.
And I was Angry with myself for not getting everything the first time; but most of all I was just very, very tired.”

“So Imaginational Dabrowski said to have a nap and imagine that I was floating on a cloud or wrapped in cotton wool and that everything should seem brighter after that. So that is what I am going to do now.”

“You and Retweet go on the Blog Hop and bring back me a sample bag or a balloon!”


This is a post for the Gifted Homeschoolers Forum December Blog Hop: Parenting OEs, 2Es and everything in between.
To read all the posts please visit


Christmas preparations 1


The Dabrowski Dogs have played a chess match with the Black Dogs to determine whether the Black Dogs would be permitted to appear in Sprite’s Christmas picture or must be content with sending their apologies and a greeting card.

The board was set so that the Dabrowski dogs and Twitter Birds could play against the Black Dogs and Sally-Anne McCormack’s ANTs (Automatic Negative Thoughts) from her books Stomp out the ANTs and Living with ANTs.

On the White Team the Memory Elephant was the king and Emotional Dabrowski was the Drama Queen. Sensual Dabrowski and Imaginational Dabrowski were the bishops, Psycho Motor Dabrowski and Intellectual Dabrowski were the leaping knights, the Topiary Tessellation Bird Leaf Tree and the Topiary Wheel Tree were the rooks and the Twitter Birds were the pawns.

On the Black Team Guard on Duty Black Dog was the king and Wistful was the queen. Thinks He’s an Alien Black Dog and SAD Seasonally Affected Dog were the bishops and Leaping Attack Black Dog and his Shadow were the leaping knights. The ANTs were the pawns. The Pair O Noids were asked to be the rooks but were anxious about being separated so they both acted as one rook and a rook was borrowed from the chess set for the other one.

Kiwi and Echidna waited hopefully on the sidelines for any ANTs who were ejected from the game.

You will probably be pleased to learn that the White team was victorious and Guard on Duty Black Dog has presented a greeting card made from my Inktober portraits of the Black Dogs to be included in the group picture. No Black Dogs will personally attend the group photo session to get an opportunity to put a dampener on the occasion.


Edward the Autonomous


And now there are three!

My friend Judy Murcutt brought me another doll last week. Judy has been helping me to locate materials and work out methods for creating persona dolls. She asked several of her friends who are keen on craft work and has been given new leads. One of them gave Judy a doll frame which had been standing in her garden to scare away possums. She thought I would be able to take it apart and see how it had been put together and she did not want it back.

I was able to see how the doll had been put together and have repaired and clothed it and it has become Edward, a sensitive botany and animal loving gifted boy. Edward is a little professor who dresses in a rather old fashioned manner, plays the recorder and other instruments and reads classical literature. Although quiet and peace loving he is very interested in knights, Arthurian legend and life in mediaeval times. That is a leather bound copy of Ivanhoe he is clutching.
I am having a great deal of fun with these dolls and think there must be a divine purpose behind them because there have been so many amazing coincidences in the finding and making of all of them.
I am just waiting to find out where it is all leading and said jokingly that maybe I would end up with a full set of persona dolls representing Betts and Neihart Profiles of the Gifted and Talented.

I am half way there.

Sprite is definitely an example of the 2E Profile.

Felicity is either an example of the Successful Profile or the Underground Profile.

And Edward is a prime example of the Autonomous Learner Profile. Edward reads voraciously and can often be seen examining plants and insects with a magnifying glass. He loves science experiments. He is happy in his own skin and pursues his own learning at his own pace in his own distinct manner. It is very appropriate that he is wearing the ‘Do what is most sensible’ Brown Brogues. He would also be comfortable in the Investigative Grey Sneakers.

So now I need to create Vincent (Vince) the At Risk Profile graffiti artist, a Creative Profile character and either a Successful Profile or  an Underground Profile character.




After the Hoagies December Blog Hop


We have returned from the Hoagies December Blog Hop Bye Bye Buy Buy   with lots of great ideas for gifts and activities for the holidays.

We set off on the hop from the post on Sprite’s Site at
Intellectual Dabrowski carried the sample bag for Sprite.

“Well, now I know what the folk at Sprite’s Site will be giving me!” Sprite said. “I need some suggestions for gifts I can give them.”

Here are the posts we visited and the comments we left or tried to leave.

Living with geniuses

Comment: These are great ideas for ways to have fun together as a family and build memorable traditions. I love the idea of Yadnuf day!

Planet Smartypants

There were some very helpful suggestions here
Limit the wish list
Just say No
Think different eg coupons
Give gifts that will leave lasting memories

Comment: I love these wise suggestions!

Homeschooling Hatters

My mother always made tapestry pictures and baked shortbread from a traditional Scottish recipe for her Christmas gifts. She would apologize for giving the same thing each year but everyone loved her shortbread and would have been disappointed if they did not receive it. The baking was an important part of our family’s Christmas tradition

Hoagies’ Nibbles and Bits!

Comment: I loved hearing about your gingerbread house creating. What a great fun family tradition!


Comment: Your gift of time to do activities together and visit places of interest sounds like a wonderful way to give a lot of fun during the holidays! Thank you for a great post!

A 2E Fox Revived

Useful suggestions here were
Avoid the media as much as possible
Limit the TV
Avoid shopping malls
Shop at Op shops where possible
Donate to charities
Recycle – try for zero waste
Visit a museum or cultural event
Give handmade gifts
Search Pinterest for craft ideas

Comment: Thank you for a great post – lots of good ideas for gifts and activities that avoid commercialism and seek to produce as little waste as possible!

Aurora Remember

This post gave a link to 5 Love Languages which we found interesting and helpful

“(1) love language = physical touch, then hugs or massage; (2) love language = quality time, then time and undivided attention; (3) love language = gifts, then hand written letter or home-made item; (4) love language = words of affirmation, then a recorded message or note of all the reasons you love the person; and (5) love language = acts of service, then home cooked dinner, laundry, or baby sit.”

Comment: Thank you for a great post – a very helpful way of thinking about what would be the ideal gift to express your love for the recipient!

…braver than you believe…

Comment: Thank you for a thought provoking post!

Gift-Ed Connections

I love this “There are so many competing narratives that are invoked at this time of year that always have me carefully navigating the distance between Santa and Scrooge, religion and secularism, scarcity and abundance, intention and expectation.”
So beautifully expressed!

My Little Poppies

Some suggestions we found here were
Books with personalized inscriptions
Handwritten letter or story of a happy memory
Handmade gifts
Something silly
Scrap book or photo album
Give to others/charities instead of family

Comment: Love all your ideas and the examples of your family gifts and also the quote from Mother Teresa.

Sunrise Learning Lab

We were not able to leave a comment here but enjoyed the post very much.

Sunrise Learning Lab also posted a Pinterest Board of Handmade Gifts at

Sprite has received a couple of her gifts already because they are similar to an Advent Calendar in that they help to count down the days and prepare for Christmas.
They are gifts for you also, dear reader.
They are a PDF booklet titled The Christmas Planner (Christian flavour) and a daily picture of a Twitter Bird snow globe and they can be found on the main page of my personal website at