Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Local Author Spotlight: Diane Lane Chambers

Authors from the 'Foothills & Vicinity Writes Group' came to 'Read, Write & Brew' on September 11th for a meet and greet. For those of you who were not able to attend, this blog post is about those authors who attended and the books they have published. Read on to learn about the writers living in your neighbourhood.

"Words in My Hands

A Teacher, A Deaf-Blind, An Unforgettable Journey"
"Hearing the Stream A Survivor's Journey into the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer"

Diane at Read, Write & Brew in September.

Words in My Hands, A Teacher, A Deaf-Blind Man, An Unforgettable Journey
Award Winner!
National League of American Pen Women Letters Contest, Marjorie Davis Roller - Non-Fiction Award April 2002

Reviewed by Robert Hamilton , California Association of Resource Specialists and Special Education Teachers

When I agreed to read and review Ms. Chambers’ book, I expected something like Tuesdays With Morrie. A little volume of reminiscences, celebrating the precious frailty of life and the human spirit, blah blah blah. Mea Culpa, I know, but that’s what I expected.

What I got was, indeed, all that, and a whole lot more. Ms. Chambers has woven four stories together into one inspirational book. The first and foremost is, of course, the story of her teacher-student relationship with the 86-year-old deaf-blind Bert Riedel, and her quest to reconnect him to life through signing communication. Fleshing out that narrative is his personal history, gathered from friends and relatives, bringing him alive to us not as a subject but as a human being, surrounded by his own universe of memories and experiences, and with his own particular philosophy of life. The third story is the history of the author and how she came to be an interpreter for the deaf as well as their advocate. And through it all is interwoven the history of the Deaf community, American Sign Language, and the hearing world’s perception and treatment of the deaf.
Purchase book.

Hearing the Stream, A Survivor's Journey into the Sisterhood of Breast Cancer
New Arrival!

Review by Allan Burns, Editor, Colorado Springs, CO

Hearing the Stream, the fruit of all she has experienced and learned as a cancer survivor, is an inspiring book that weaves together her own story and those of five others, thereby providing multiple perspectives on a complex disease that can be a different as the individual people dealing with it. As Dr. Tim Byers of the University of Colorado Comprehensive Cancer Center says, "Accounts such as this of the human toll of breast cancer motivate me as a researcher--and should motivate us all--to redouble our many efforts to reduce further and someday eradicate this disease."
Purchase book.

About the Author
Diane Lane Chambers, a resident and native of Colorado, holds a B.S. degree in Therapeutic Recreation from the University of Colorado. Nationally certified as a sign language interpreter she has worked in the Denver Public School system as an educational interpreter and, for thirteen years, directed a summer program at Gove Community School, in Denver, into which deaf and physically disabled children were mainstreamed.
Over the last thirty years as a free-lance interpreter she has provided sign language interpretation for hundreds of consumers in a wide array of settings including health care, business, education, and government.
As a breast cancer survivor and advocate, Diane is an active member of the National Breast Cancer Coalition. She is a 2003 graduate of the Coalition’s Project LEAD, and since then has participated in a number of the NBCC’s Advocacy Trainings in Washington D.C., and Lobby Days on Capital Hill. In December 2005, she attended the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium and graduated from the Alamo Breast Cancer Patient Advocate Program. Locally she volunteers for the American Cancer Society giving presentations and meeting with newly diagnosed women as part of the Reach to Recovery Program. She lives with her husband in Conifer, Colorado.

Saturday, October 16, 2010

Java Junkies of the Month - Jane and Less Prior

Julie (pressing record on her voice recorder): Alright, so we are going to record our Java Junkie interview…

Jefferson (in the background): woah, woah… are we getting all high tech with our interviews now?

Julie: Don’t interrupt, this is valuable airtime you’re taking up here. So this is with Jane and Less Prior. How did you guys first find out about Read, Write & Brew?

Jane: Well, we take Taekwondo class across from the store, and I think the first person that really introduced us was Sara Webb. We try to come every Saturday after we work out. That’s our treat (laughs).

Julie: So what’s your favorite drink?

Less: The ‘Black and Tan’.

Jane: Yeah, the ‘Black and Tan’.

Less: So far…

Julie: What are you guys reading right now?

Jane: I did buy a book here when you had the Foothills and Vicinity Writers Group out here, and I’ve started to read that, the one about Kansas (‘What do you do with the yolks? ‘ by Carol Devlin). Since I’ve started homeschooling I’ve been reading a lot with Danny so, you know, my pleasure reading has kinda been put on hold, just because I try to read his lessons before the next lesson. I’m learning a lot from his studies.

Julie: How long have you been homeschooling Danny?

Jane: This is my second year. He’s in fifth grade. He loves to read. If he gets a good book, he’s a really good reader. So I’m really happy about that. That runs in our family.

Julie: So Jane, tell us about your project that you’re working on at the Taekwondo school.

Jane: Well I’m working on my black belt for December’s testing, and this testing is for my recommended black belt. My goal is to help raise money for the families who need assistance in paying for the Taekwondo classes. So to raise this money I’m helping Sara Webb with the Halloween event. We’re going to make it like a carnival and the money that people pay for the games goes towards that.

Julie: Oh, that’s the Trunk ‘n Treat! I remember you guys hosting that last year. What day are you having that this year?

Jane: Saturday October 30th from 4pm to 6pm. Everyone’s welcome to come and check things out and check the school out. We raise the money by people paying to take part in the activities, and Danny as well as Brett (Sara’s son) have volunteered to have people throw whipped cream at their face for one of the competitions. That’s the game I’m organizing for my project.

Less: There’s going to be food there too.

Jane: Everybody’s going to bring their own ‘pot luck’ for everyone to share. They’ll also have the contest for the trunks, where we all vote for the trunk that everyone likes best.

Less: And everybody gets candy because each trunk you go to, it’s like ‘trick or treat’, but it’s a ‘trunk or treat’, so you visit the ‘trunk’ and you get a ‘treat’.

Jefferson: So do you have junk in your trunk?

Jane: (laughs) In my trunk I’m going to have a donation jar and people are welcome to donate to the families with that. We have about 5 or 6 families that benefit from this fundraising, so we just need to get more money in there.

Julie: We’ll that’s awesome, I’ll have to make sure I promote that on our blog site [editor’s note: DONE!] So another question I usually ask our Java Junkies is, what would our blog readers be surprised to know about you?

Less: I met Mickey Rooney when I worked on the golf course. When I was at Tre Hills Country Club, I was top dressing tee’s and he was playing a round of golf with the gold pro. So he was giving the golf pro lessons. I ended up just top dressing and I went 4 or 5 holes with them. He was a character. And he’s really short like they say. He was just cracking jokes.

Julie: How long ago was that?

Less: Well, that was 30 or 40 years ago.

Jane: I think, what people would find surprising about us is that everyone thinks that Taekwondo is for kids but what we’re doing is something that’s really difficult for adults to do (taking classes). There’s about 10 parents that join in. But we’ve stuck with it and continue to stick with it. When I first brought Danny there I thought it was just for the kids but it’s for adults as well. That’s us getting on the mats and testing in front of people, which was hard because that’s not who I am. I have changed a lot from doing that in terms of confidence and how to talk to people. It’s hard for me to get up and speak in front of other people and I’m a little bit better with that now. I think that’s helped us a lot.

Thanks guys for being our October Java Junkies - we hope you enjoyed your $10 gift certificate!

Thursday, October 14, 2010


We're going to have our cake
and eat it too - wanna help us?

This Saturday marks exactly one year since we've opened our doors.
It's because of your loyal patronage that we've made it this far.

There'll be birthday cake for everyone to share,
free drip coffee, and
random prizes throughout the day (with any purchase).

So please come down and help us celebrate!

How far we've come in one year... remember what we looked like when we first opened?

Painting with Connie

Our first Halloween.

Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Daybreak in Odessa

Authors from the 'Foothills & Vicinity Writes Group' came to 'Read, Write & Brew' on September 11th for a meet and greet. For those of you who were not able to attend, this blog post is about those authors who attended and the books they have published. Read on to learn about the writers living in your neighbourhood.

Daybreak in Odessa
A memoir by Rita Stout

"The family clockwise from upper right- Rita, a senior at the University who would graduate six months later; Walter, my father, a professor at the University of Wisconsin, Heinrich the dog who bit the mailman; my brother, Wally, fourteen years old and in junior high; my sister Wendy, five years old; my mother, and my sister Lois, a freshman at the university. A year later in spring of 1959, as the family finished eating dinner, my father announced that he had just accepted a sabbatical at the University of Hawaii for the summer. Lois and I were welcome to come if we agreed to "be on deck" five days a week to take care of Wendy during the day. I balked. This had been my life to date, caretaker of the family. For the first time in my life I made other plans. This is my story."

This is an unusual coming of age story with unexpected twists and turns, a true account of a sheltered, na├»ve woman in her early twenties as she struggles to extricate herself from parents who, though well intentioned, were critical and controlling. In the desert of West Texas she meets a man who believes in her. With newfound confidence she learns to cope with both the joy and obstacles of life in a place vastly different from the home she left. Heartfelt and brutally honest, she shares the journey that each must take to give birth to one’s self.

Rita Stout teaches reading to college freshmen. Her first book, Not so Small a Circle, chronicles her only daughter's valiant but loosing battle with leukemia. She lives with her husband in Denver, Colorado.

If you would like to purchase a copy of Daybreak in Odessa, send a certified check or money order to: Rita Stout 2330 Yarrow St., Lakewood, CO 80214 (Please Allow 3 weeks for processing & mailing). PRICE: $18.00 (+ $3.00 shipping) total per book.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

We've now got the Coffeehouse vibe a-goin' on.

Have you been in to see our new additions yet? We've brought some new furniture pieces into the store, and I think you'll agree, we've definitely got the 'Coffeehouse' vibe going on now. If you haven't experienced the coziness yet, you've got to come in soon.

More couches.

Cozy chess playing nook.

Conference table, comfortably seats 8, surrounded by books


We're still looking for musicians to play Monday to Thursday nights. If you know anyone who'd be interested, please get them to contact us.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

We're ready!

The stage is built, sanded, stained, glossed and ready to go.

We're putting together a list of live entertainment events and will announce them as soon as we have it all confirmed.

If you or anyone you know is looking for a venue with a stage for music, performing, reading, public speaking... or anything, let us know and we'll add it to our calendar. Come in and talk to Jefferson, or send us an email: read.write.brew@gmail.com.

Don't forget, we're now open until 9pm Monday through Thursday.