Wednesday, August 31, 2016

Story: The Serpent's Demise

Story. After tricking Adam and Eve to eat the forbidden fruit, the Serpent was filled with satisfaction. Yet, when God realized that the Serpent was involved, the Serpent was bitter. He felt that God was unfair. God immediately punished the Serpent without questioning him. After his punishment, the Serpent madly slithered off into a forested area.

The Serpent talks to himself, “How dare He? Why did he give me no justice? All I did was persuade Eve with words. Eve did all the work.”

Then, he hears rustling leaves. A female snake appears. She looked gorgeous with her contrast of dark and bright colors. The Serpent says, “What are you doing here?”

The female snake replies, “Can I not explore? This land is free to roam.”

The Serpent powerfully replies, “Not here, where I am.”

The female snake starts to leave, but the Serpent stops her. He says, “I permit you to stay. What are you called?”

The female snake replies, “I am called snake.” While talking to her, the Serpent creates his plan to overcome Adam and Eve. He plans to make her become his. He needs to create an army that will strike at Adam and Eve altogether to decrease the amount of their survival.

As the night goes on, he has her over his control. He cunningly sweet talks her, despite her not knowing who he is. The night ends successfully according to the Serpent’s plan.

Morning arises, and the Serpent slithers around on his belly with annoyance. The Serpent complains, “If only I had my feet, would I move around faster.”

The female snake hears and becomes puzzled. She questions him, “We have always been without legs, but why do you say so?”

The Serpent then tells her of his plan. The female serpent responds, “I’ve heard stories about you. No wonder I did not see you present while all animals looked upon Adam and Eve according to the Lord’s command. How could you deceive me?”

The Serpent disregards her words and continues on with his plan, forcing her to cooperate with him. Since the Serpent did not answer her question, the female serpent ran away. The Serpent turns around and sees Adam and Eve far off in the land, close to the west gate near the Garden of Eden. He watches their every move for a while. Although he made his plan, he did not want to waste an opportunity. He could not wait seven years without trying to accomplish goal at least once. When he sees that they are truly alone, he rushes to his closet target, Eve. As he chases after the wailing Eve's legs, Adams pleads to God. Adam says, “O, God, the Serpent has returned. Please help us from his scaly grasp.”

God pitied him and sent angels to their aid. An angel cast a bright light upon the snake. The snake is stunned, and the angel put him in a box. The other angel helps Adam and Eve stand up. After reviewing with Adam and Eve that their covenant has not expired, God punishes the Serpent once again.

God decrees, “You have harmed my man and woman once again. Since you have not repented, I will make you become dumb and you will lose your power of speech.”

The serpent yells out, “Though I have lost my speech and intelligence, there are others who will take my place. The seeds I have sown will...” In mid-sentence, God used his power to make him dumb and lose his power of speech. He was afraid that Adam and Eve would fret of what will come.

God told the angel to release the Serpent, and the angel holding the Serpent threw him to the other end of the world.

Adam and Eve express their concern to God, but God reassures them. He says, “I will resurrect you like the many times I have already done. Do not fret, as I am always watching over you.”

The female snake returns to the forested area where she met the Serpent, but does not see him. She waits a few more days, but he still does not come. In seven years, her litter will surely appear. She worries and hopes that the evilness of their father will not be inherited to her children.

(A forested area by Jean Baptiste-Camille Corot: Wiki Commons)

Author’s Note. Since most of the Adam and Eve Unit is focused on Adam, God, and Eve, I decided to write a story about the Serpent. I created a twist and went in-depth of a scene that was briefly mentioned. In summary, the unit discusses the creation of Adam and Eve, and how they live before and after being punished to the world. Throughout the story, many side characters come in to play, the flaming sword, the Serpent, the angels, and animals. In the Garden of Eden, Adam lived happily. However, after Eve was tricked into eating from the forbidden tree by the Serpent, she gave it to others to eat as well. After they behaved differently, such as, being ashamed of going before God naked, God realized what they did and punished them to Earth. Additionally, the unit provides information of how sorrowful Adam and Eve were after banishment, but they were not able to return and be with God because of the promise. God promised that he would get them after approximately 5,500 years. My story is set during the days after their banishment to the world.

Bibliography. Adam and Eve from Genesis, by Louis Ginzberg, and by Rutherford H. Platt, Jr., link to the reading online.

Tuesday, August 30, 2016

Reading Notes: Adam and Eve, Part B

There was not a lot I could extract from Part B. Most of it centered around Adam and Eve. The dialogue among them and God is not something that I would change. Perhaps, I could change the story by decreasing the amount of Adam's suicide attempts. However, I believe that it is the best it can be.

The parts that are my favorites or parts that will be useful for my next story includes the side characters, for example, the flaming sword, angels, animals, and the serpent. Regarding the flaming sword, it pitied Adam and Eve after they got scared of him, and talked to God about them. What God did, which was send an angel to protect the place with the flaming sword, was a very nice gesture. I, personally, would do nothing about it. God was very understanding of Adam and Eve. As for the angels, they were very helping towards Adam and Eve as well. The angels aided Adam and Eve according to what God told them to do.

The serpent, the evil character, is something I would be interested in writing about. One of the sections of Part B said that the serpent attacked Adam and Eve on Earth. This scene is what captured my attention, because there was some external action as opposed to internal action from Adam. Also, most of the story was not shown through the serpent's point-of-view. It would be interesting to give details about what the serpent planned and thought.

After reading both parts, I am leaning towards writing my story from the serpent's point-of-view. I will also incorporate what I wrote in the second part of my last post. It would be a story about a man who was deceived by the serpent, because the serpent wanted to return to its previous, better form.

(Adam, Eve, and the Serpent: Wiki Commons)

Bibliography. Adam and Eve from The Forgotten Books of Eden, edited by Rutherford H. Platt, Jr., link to the reading online.

Reading Notes: Adam and Eve, Part A

There were a few interesting things I came across when reading Adam and Eve Part A. First, what God gave Adam was mainly fruits to eat, not meat. This comes from The Fall section. If I were to write a story about this, I can go in depth and add dialogue of how Adam gathered food. Also, I would add how the angels gave him meat and wine to consume, despite him not being allowed to hunt meat. To add a twist, I can add how Adam longed to eat meat to the point where he almost killed an animal.

Second, another story I could write about is the flaming sword that protected the tree of life. I could write an account of a man’s journey went there. This would include some of the seven portals, as mentioned in the Paradise section. Although he would not be able to pass through several of them, each portal would be described. Additionally, I would add details of what I imagine the flaming sword looked like. If I wanted to add a twist to this story, I could add in the serpent who persuaded Eve to eat the fruit of the tree. I would say that the serpent, in some way, although losing his power of speech, persuaded the man to go through the portals and bring back something to return the serpent to glory again.

Third, from the section of Paradise, it says that all animals “feared the first couple, all of which changed into the opposite after the fall of man.” I can tell about the difference of attitude from the animals before and after the fall of the first couple. I will have dialogue primarily between the animals before, during, and after the fall, but there will also be some dialogue with Adam and the animals.

(The Creation of Adam by William Blake: Wiki Commons)

Bibliography. Adam and Eve from Genesis and by Louis Ginzberg, link to the reading online.

Sunday, August 28, 2016

My Thoughts on Growth Mindset

I have never heard of Growth Mindset before, but it makes sense. For me, it would be difficult to adjust to Growth Mindset. From watching the videos, I have more of a fixed mindset. I like to be good at things. What I believe demonstrates that is good results. If I am faced with a challenge, I get worried. I think, "Will I get it right? What if it turns out bad?" I feel that challenges get me out of my comfort zone, a place where I have control of things, and I do not like that. I like to be sure of my results. I believe that if I was taught Growth Mindset, it would be easier to embrace and overcome challenges. Growth Mindset is something that I am open to learn about.

(Growth Mindset Meme by Laura Gibbs. Web source.

My personal goals for learning this semester is getting good grades, and at least remembering something from my classes. There is so much information to cover, and it is difficult for me to remember everything. I am excited about all my classes, but there is one class that I am worried about. That class is my Capstone class. There are two goals in that class, which is finding my career path and finishing the capstone group project. I have no experience with any of these things. I am very unsure of my career path. Also, my capstone project concerns actually coming up with an idea that will work in real life. We have a client, and we have to come up with an idea to fulfill her needs. It is highly possible that our idea will be utilized in future years to come. However, with the help of the whole group, I believe that it will be successful.

Starting the Semester

Starting the semester is always hectic to me, but I try my best to overcome it. I do not have many organizational tips, but the ones I have are listed below.
  1. Write down important dates for important assignments. These assignments may include exams, tests, and quizzes. I usually write them on a planner, but feel free to write it on a piece of paper or add it as an event on your phone's calendar. 
  2. Make a list of what you need to do. When I feel overwhelmed, I write a list of what I need to do. I also do this per week too. Writing it down gives me a sense of what I need to finish. Then, when I actually finish a task, I cross it off because it makes me feel like I accomplished something. 

  3. Be on top of things. Meaning, try to get things done early. For example, when I have time, I try to get the reading out of the way. Then, I revise my notes on what I read to refresh my memory. In addition to getting things done early, I will not have to stress about it when it is close to the deadline.
  4. Check Canvas, your e-mail, or D2L daily. I keep an eye on them to see if the instructor makes any changes before class time actually arrives. For example, last week, my online instructor was not able to upload a video online to discuss the syllabus. Instead, he put up a syllabus quiz for us to take.

Thursday, August 25, 2016

Reading Options

For Week 2, I will choose a biblical story, Adam and Eve. One of my reading interests is the Tales of a Parrot Unit because I have not heard of tales of a parrot, and I am curious about what the stories will include. Another unit I am interested in is Europa's Fairy Book because I want to see how it would be different from the stories that I learned from the many Disney movies I watched. Also, I like reading fairy tales. I chose Apache Tales to get a sense of variety. I want to know the storytelling style of a Native American tribe. All of these reading interests are new to me. Also, I would like to read a variety of stories.

(A barn owl from the Apache Tales Unit. Web source.)

Storybook Favorites

Story One. The topic for the first storybook I chose was about ghostly adventures and the haunted places located in Oklahoma. The paranormal is an interesting and scary topic. The title, Ghostly Adventures, was very straightforward. It let me know what the storybook will be about.

The introduction mentions all of the stories that the author will be discussing. I knew of one stories, but I did not know about the others. There was some creative style from the author, in the sense that it felt like the author was a tour guide. The layout and design of the web page suits the topic due to its dark color. The layout creates a sense of mysteriousness and creepiness. The navigation on the left is very useful. I may put the navigation bar on the left on my future project.

Story Two. The topic for the second storybook was very interesting and new to me. The title, My Brothers Grimm, did a good job of telling what the story will be about. It started with just a picture on the first page, but clicking on the next page gives the introduction. I like the name of the second page, “Setting the Record Straight.” It was very appropriate and creative. The introduction made me feel sorrow and wronged, just like her. I wanted to know more about what she would say.

The physical layout and font was an interesting choice. Standard fonts are usually what I would use. The color scheme was similar to the Ghostly Adventures page. It suited the topic. What I would take from this page is the change of font. Having a different font will make my storybook more interesting. However, having only a picture as the first thing newcomers see is not something I would use. I would prefer to have some words that accompany the picture.

Story Three. The third story is one that I do not know of as well. The title, Heroes Revealed, was an interesting choice. To me, the introduction was somewhat confusing. Throughout the introduction, it talked about the reader or me, who was a hero. Then, at the end of the introduction, it got to the main point, which is the title. The main point was that the author will take me on a journey to visit the different places of afterlife and those who inhabit it. Overall, it was very good, because it made me want to read more. The writing and inclusion of the reader was what propelled me to want to read more.

I would imagine that since the introduction talks to me after my death, the layout would be darker than the tan background. However, since the next pages discuss beautiful aspects of the afterlife, it was fitting that the background is bright. The thing I like about the physical layout was having the words and pictures on the horizontal line. It would be a good choice, but what I do not like about it is how cramped the words looked. Regarding the use of pictures, the pictures in the introduction was deceiving. It looked scary, but the upcoming pages showed none of that at all. I can see how the author used the pictures in the introduction and contrasted them with those in the next pages. Aside from this, I also liked the top banner. The previous two pages did not have one.

(The Ferryman from Heroes Revealed. Web Source.)

Wednesday, August 24, 2016

Introduction to a Family Girl

Hello, all. My name is Stephanie Thao. I am a senior majoring in Information Studies. 

The best class I took last semester was my Wealth, Power, and Prestige class. My professor was very passionate about the class, and the class material was interesting. He called on people in the class, which I believe was very useful to me. It was another reason that required me to prepare for the class. Also, I liked the layout of the class.

The beginning of summer break was busy, but as time went on, it was not as hectic. The next week after I went back after finishing my finals, we had our family reunion. Everyone in my family came to town. We played games and competed against each other. It was fun and hot. Unfortunately, my nephew who would graduate in a few days sprained his ankle while playing soccer. Supposedly one of my younger nephews pushed him accidentally, but we are not sure. No one was blamed.

The next day, we took several family pictures. It only included my siblings, six sisters and two brothers, and my parents. This was the first time that we have taken a picture as a family in a long time. From what I remember, the last time we took a full family picture was more than ten years ago, and it did not even include my younger sister.

Then, my nephew graduated high school. Everyone went, including his dad’s side of the family. We all fit almost three rows. A few days later, we went on a mini-vacation to Dallas, Texas. The main thing I will remember is the confusing highways and traffic. We went shopping, to the zoo, Ikea, and played a card game, Ultimate Werewolf, at the hotel.

(An Ikea: Wiki Commons)

After all these events, I stayed home and relaxed until school began again. It was not really relaxing, because I had to do chores and cook mainly. Additionally, I played games with my siblings and nephews. For example, we played Mario Kart 8, card games, Bingo, and more.

Aside from my summer break, I love eating snacks, candy, and desserts. My sister found a recipe for a Chinese-style sponge cake a few years ago. She usually decorates it and I make it. It tastes light and not too sugary. It is a cake that my parents especially love and other family members like it too. However, my brother does not like it because he says that it tastes like nothing.

Anyway, this is an introduction about me. I look forward to working with everyone in the class.

Week 1 Story: The Belly and the Members

For Week 1 Storytelling, I decided to use the Aesop Fable, The Belly and the Members.

Story. In an office setting, people are discussing about a new project. An employee sits there and listens to the discussion, but gives little input. The other employees noticed that she barely contributes in every meeting. While she is lost in writing and thought, they all turn towards her and ask, “So, do you have any ideas?” She agrees with someone’s idea without giving much details, and they decide not to pressure her further. However, they continue the meeting, suggesting bizarre ideas.

They all snickered inside. This was their plan all along. They wanted her to shoulder most of the work because of her little input in previous meetings. They did not care if this little meeting failed. They needed her to provide useful input. They needed her to pull her weight. Also, the meetings they had were unofficial, little meetings. In the real meetings, they would surely come up with sensible ideas.

The quiet employee was surprised by their bizarre ideas, but she continued on with writing. Little did they know what she was facing at home. Her child was severely sick. She discussed about her inability to focus on work with her boss, but her boss asked her to continue working. He knew her potential from her past work experience, and he believed in her abilities.

During the two next brainstorming meetings, the others have tried to pressure the quiet employee to talk. The timid employee’s son got better as well. She got more focused and grasped the project quickly. For the next meeting, the timid employee prepared her astounding idea. When the others questioned her, like the other meetings, she told them her idea. They were very surprised and happy. They finally warmed up to her. Later in the meeting, she apologized for her lack of input and told them that her son has been sick but was on the way of recovery. After the successful project, they all celebrated.

Author's Note. I used the Aesop Fable, The Belly and the Members. The fable focused on a person's body parts that could think and make decisions. In the fable, the belly did nothing while members worked. After figuring that out, the other body parts went on a strike. The strike resulted in the other body parts being weak after a while, and they soon found out that belly was useful after all. I decided to change my story to a real life setting. I thought of a similar story line to the original, and things changed from there.

Bibliography. "The Belly and the Members" from the Fables of Aesop by Joseph Jacobs. Web source.

Tuesday, August 23, 2016

My Favorite Place

Tulsa, Oklahoma is my favorite place so far. Although I have been on a few mini-vacations to California, Texas, and Minnesota throughout my life, I have not seen anything that caught my eye. Tulsa is home for me, since I was born there. Also, with the exception of living in Norman for college, it has been the only place that I have lived at. I am very familiar with how to get around where I live around town, and it is the place where many memories have occurred.  

 (Tulsa Skyline: Wikimedia Commons)

Monday, August 22, 2016

Comment Wall and Storybook

Hello, all! Welcome to my comment wall and storybook post.

My storybook is called The Story of Golden Apples. It will consist of stories from Greek Mythology that includes golden apples.

(Apple by Ralf Kunze: Web Source)

First Post

This is my first post for my mythology and folklore course. Yay!