Magic Spell Jar Post Ten (36 – 40)

36. Wait, Weight

Wait means to hang around until someone has time for you – or until something is about to begin – or to serve people, as a waiter

Weight is what most people seem to be battling.  It measures how much gravity pulls on you.  This weight has an eight in it but it in a perfect world, it would have an ate in it. Sorry, bad pun.

37. Wined and Whined

Wined is often used in the phrase “wined and dined.” It means someone treated someone else to a fancy dinner served with wine.

Whined is to fuss and moan – He whined over the loss of his glove.

38. Stalk, Stock (Pronounced similarly)

Stalk is the main stem of a plant, but can also mean following someone, usually stealthily and with bad intentions. The lion stalked the antelope hoping for dinner.

Stock can mean cows or other domestic animals (as in live stock). It can also mean goods (usually for sale). Used as a verb it means to place good somewhere (She stocked the shelves with toothpaste and other dental products)

39. Feint, Faint (pronounced similarly)

Feint – I saw this misused in a book recently – Feint is to make a misleading (feigned) move usually when boxing. Feint with your left, then lead with your right.

Faint – Is unclear, not distinct or it can be passing out (He fainted from dehydration)

40. Your, You’re, Yore — Probably the most commonly misused words on web sites are your and you’re.

Your is a possessive pronoun. When talking about something that is owned by the other person use your. This is your bat. Your answer is incorrect. Your activities are amazing.

You’re is a contraction meaning you are. You’re acting silly. If you’re going with  me, be ready in ten minutes.

Yore is not used as often as the other two spellings. Yore refers to time gone by, usually far in the past. In times of yore, knights jousted with lances. Though dangerous and often fatal, jousting was a form of entertainment.

Should you use your or you’re in the comment you’re typing? Usually it is  easy to decide. Just read your comment saying you are. If that doesn’t seem correct, you probably want to use your, not you’re..

Spell Jar Post Seven (31 to 36)

31. That, Who – These are what I call “refer back” pronouns

Who refers back to a person.  The man who flew into space came back a week later.

That refers back to a place or an animal.  The red spotted dog is the one that bit me.

If you use either in the other way (like the man that or the dog who), you are conferring properties upon the noun – making the man a thing and the dog a person.

32. Threw, Through – These words sound alike but their meanings are not alike.

Threw means tossed, like she threw the ball to first base.  He threw the ball and broke a window. This is also the word you would use in ‘he threw the game’ meaning he deliberately let the other team win.

Through means went into and came out a different side, as in the ball didn’t go to the first baseman, but instead went through the rose bushes. She walked through the door.

33. Way, Weigh, Whey – I recently saw one of these words used incorrectly – you do not way in when offering your opinion, you weigh in. If you are measuring your weight before a wrestling match, you also weigh in.

Way has a multitude of meanings. It can be a path (on the way, by the wayside), it can mean extensive (that’s way to much), or direction (which way to Grandma’s House) and more

Weigh is a measurement of mass versus gravity. How much do you weigh?  Or as mentioned above it can mean offering an opinion. He weighed in on the discussion.

Whey is a dairy by-product.  You may be familiar with this line from a poem: “Little Miss Muffet sat on a tuffet, eating her curds and whey.”  A lot of weird words show up in that line –  a tuffet is a stool, curds are like cottage cheese, and the whey can be either the liquidy runny part of cottage cheese or the thinner excess of that liquid which can be a drink.  But these days whey is generally used in processed foods.

34. Wear, Ware, Where – These words should have a subtle difference in pronunciation, but usually do not.

Wear is to use clothing or other adornments.  Another meaning is to show use as in there is a lot of wear on that tire.

Ware is sometimes used in place of beware, but that is colloquial (old) usage.  It is also a type of goods, like housewares – usables in the kitchen usually.  Turn it around and you have warehouse which is a place to store items (wares).

Where is actually a pronoun refering to a place. Where did you put my socks? Here’s another use: wherewithall . It means sort of like sense or awareness. I wonder if she has the wherewithall to survive those conditions.

Look them up to find other meanings.

35. Wonder, Wander –

Wonder is to contemplate, think about, or mentally be in awe. I wonder if I’ll this is a good thing.(contemplate) And here’s a usage most will find familiar: and what to my wondering (awe stricken) eyes should appear . . .

Wander is to travel in an unplanned manner or just to travel. She wandered off alone. She spent her life wandering the world. The child wandered off and became lost. In class, her mind wandered off the subject.

Magic Spell Jar – Post Five (21-25)

21. Rack, Wrack –

Rack – is a place to keep or put things, like a clothes rack or a cue rack. But also in medieval torture chambers they often had a rack.  They attached people to it and stretched them as a means of torture.  None of us want any personal experience with a torture rack.

Wrack – is most often used in “wrack your brain” – to attempt to wring out particular memories.  Another fairly common phrase is “wrack and ruin,” usually referring to the wreckage of  one’s life or emotional state.

22. Regimen, Regiment – This is included because the nurses at the nursing home never did get it right.

Regimen – is a schedule or plan for administering drugs – or a plan that you adhere to for other things, like exercise.

Regiment – is a military grouping or division.  The nurses insisted the drugs were administered according to regiment. I always pictured this whole mess of soldiers forcing the pills down the poor old people’s throats.

23. Ring, Wring

Ring – Ah, ring has so many meanings: a precious piece of jewelry for your finger, a sound a bell makes, a mark around a collar or bathtub, and age indicator within a tree, and more.

Wring –  Wring basically is to twist something with the intent of extracting, like to wring out your laundry to extract the excess water before hanging it to dry.  You may have heard the expression “wring your neck.”  When you wring something’s neck you are still extracting something – in this case the life of the victim.  But when someone says, “I’ll wring your neck for saying that,” in this country it is an idle threat, meaning they won’t really follow through on it.  In some countries I suspect you should take a comment like that seriously


.24. Separate – means set apart – this word gives some people trouble. Just remember there is a rat in separate.


25. Shudders, Shutters –

I include this because an English teacher whose blog I follow interchanged them and just this evening I saw the same mistake on another blog.

Shudder is something you do – a tremor usually associated with being cold, frightened, or disgusted.  You might say, “He shuddered when the dragon roared.”  Or the congealed food on the plate made me shudder .

Shutter is a usually something you shut.  You have shutters over your windows or you can shutter your eyes which does not mean close them but to close off any expression in them.  I don’t know how to do that, but I’ve read about it.  Shutter can also be the person or mechanism that shuts something.

Magic Spell Jar Post Four (16-20)

Look for the Spell jar instructions under Craft

16. Its and It’s

This is very confusing.

It’s (with an apostrophe) is a contraction for it is. 

Its (without an apostrophe) shows possession like the color of something,  such as     its eyes were blue.

The reason this is so confusing to me is that to show possession you usually use an       apostrophe, like the murderer’s  weapon was discarded.  As far as I know, its is the         only possessive that does NOT use an apostrophe. It’s very confusing, and I have to     stop and consider whenever I use this goofy little three-letter word.

17. Knit, nitpronounced alike but mean refer to different things

Nit is a little tiny word for a little tiny bug, also used in the expression nitwit.  That           means the brains of a bug or a tiny brain.  This is generally considered an insult.             Unless you are an entomologist who admires bugs.

Knit with a “K” is a type of sewing.  Actually it is more like specialized knot tying than     sewing. Easy spelling hint: Knit and Knot both begin with a “K.”

Here’s a little poem about the silent K:

Use a K with knit and knot, But for the bug do not

18. Knotted, nodded – knot, not, naught –

Knotted means tied, like a knot in a string 

Nodded means bobbed your head, but if you bobbed your hair, you cut and styled it     in a certain way. 

Knot is a tie in a string,

Not is no way. It is not the same as naught which means nothing.

Naught is a more old fashioned word and means nothing.  A fairly common phrase         is “All for naught,”  which means it was all for nothing, nothing came of it.

When speaking about language, not and naught are called negative words.

19. Metal, Medal, Mettle 

Metal is a type of matter, it is not plastic, nor glass, nor earthen. It is metal, like gold,     silver, tin, iron — 

A medal can be made from metal and often is, but not always.  You are awarded a       medal for something outstanding that you have done or accomplished – sometimes a huge medallion disk (like for the Olympic games) usually a  badge suitable for pinning to clothing, but not the same as a law enforcement badge

Mettle is an inherent strength of spirit or character.  If you are given a task that will         take ages to get through, your mettle will be tested.  Or it takes a lot of mettle to practice until you win a gold medal.

20. Phase, Faze, Face

Face and phase sound alike but faze has a buzzy sound at the end,

Phase is a period of time in development – As he’s just going through a phase.  At         this phase the chemistry experiment should sizzle but not explode.

Faze is an effect or having an effect emotionally, like meeting the dragon did not             seem to faze  him.

Face, of course, is what you see in the mirror every morning. It should not be used in     place of faze, but face can be a verb, too, as in – I can’t face another day without             dragons – or – to begin the hockey game, the centers will face off.

Halloween Project – Magic Spell Jar Directions

I’m thinking of making a “magic spell” jar for the grandkids for Halloween. 

Would be fairly simple:

  • Decorate a jar with Halloween colors and images – Use one with a mouth wide enough to dip into with hands
  • Label it magic spell jar
  • Drop in slips of “spells” – Just print the spells found under  “pages” to the right then click “Magic Spell Jar” and clip apart (one number per slip), which usually have two or three words bold words and a discussion of the words
  • Include instructions for removing one spell per day.

It is important to do one spell per day so the kids do not become overwhelmed or bored. Like magic most of the hints will stay with you, if you make a point of using the words two or three times on the day pulled.

Easter Craft

I’m really not much of a crafter, so the things I try are usually quite simple. I like Ink projects — making computer generated cards and such, but do try other things once in a great while.

My grandchildren live at a distance and are getting older. Even if they were young enough to get excited about an Easter basket, mailing baskets just doesn’t work well. So I  wanted to do something small, easy to mail, and different.

I’ve been saving items to re-purpose, which seems to be popular in crafting circles. Since we open our cans with an under-the-rim can opener, we have no sharp edges and the lids snap back on. So here’s what I did:

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You need: Some vegetable cans with lids than snap on, computer, printer, paper, photo for the label, scissors, glue – I used a hot glue gun. I made one can for each grandchild.

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The labels read:

FRONT – (over the photo) – Gramma’s, Pickled Chicks, Easter Delicacies, NET WT – unknown, Fat Free – not, Cholesterol Free – not.

LEFT SIDE – Distributed by: GRAM INK, Inc with love, City, State, email address, web site address, “A few treats and a healthy dose of love”, Expiration Date: The treats won’t last long. The love is forever!

RIGHT SIDE – Nutrition Facts, Servings per container: 1, Calories: 2 many, Total Fat: 2 much, Sodium: 2 much, Healthy Stuff: 2 little, Love: A Whole Lot, Happy Easter

Printing the labels: I made labels with the computer using Word. I used an unmarked photo I found on Pinterest. Thank you to the unknown photographer. Center the photo on the label leaving room for the “ingredients, nutrition, etc. on each end. Just make up some funny things for that information. I used text boxes to place the text, both on the photos and on the ends.

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This is to illustrate each end. There should be no split.

Trim to size: The total size of the labels I made were 41/8 inches by 81/4 inches. I had to trim the length on some of them to avoid gluing over any text at the joining. You will want to overlap a little but not over text.

Glue to can: After trimming to size and making sure they would not overlap the text, I hot glued at the joining.

Fill, close, and ready to mail: I filled with a few treats in a sandwich bag, added a little cash, popped the lid back on, and they were ready to package for mailing to the Grandkids.