I am excited to be partnering with Your Wine Cellar in Strongsville, Ohio. Your Wine Cellar is the winery side of The Brew Kettle, a brew-on-premises micro-brewery and restaurant that also offers an opportunity to make and bottle wine. This is our FAVORITE place in our home town. The intimate seating and colorful decor in Your Wine Cellar creates perfect place for a small gathering or party. Perhaps the best part – just ask my husband – is the beer taps along along with wine selections at the tasting bar. Having established a friendly relationship with Ry Haditsch, the wine-mistress and manager, I was able to help her use chalk cloth to make her life easier – and the experience of her guests more fun.

Chalk Cloth sign displays wines available for making

Ry needed a place to display the list of wines available to make – a list that changes from time to time. This long, reusable chalk cloth scroll did the trick. The chalk cloth is bordered with a rich gold and burgundy grape fabric and stabilized with dowel rods at the top and bottom.

Linda’s Other Life chalk cloth table mat at Your Wine Cellar Winery

Also, at Your Wine Cellar, Ry is displaying and selling a few of my chalk cloth table mats which measure 14 x 30 inches and are perfect for labeling wines and cheeses for a wine tasting or party tablescape.

Linda’s Other Life chalk cloth table mat at Your Wine Cellar Winery

She has offered to make wine gift bags available to customers purchasing a bottle of wine to give as a gift.

And, just for fun, there is a full sized chalk cloth table runner on the copper-topped tasting bar. Looks like customers are already having some fun with my creations!

Linda’s Other Life chalk cloth table mat at Your Wine Cellar Winery

We have made and bottled wine at Your Wine Cellar on several occasions. What a fun evening with friends – tasting, selecting a wine to make, mixing the juice, adding the extras to the mix. Customers can design their own labels before their bottling date. They offer packages for wedding parties to mix and bottle small, favor-sized wedding wines with custom designed bride and groom labels. They also frequently have a Red and White deal, where you can make a red and a white wine on the same evening and give half of each case back to Your Wine Cellar, so you can take home a split case of two of your favorites!

We love having a local favorite Friday night destination. If we were in Ireland, this would be our pub. See you on Friday! Get there early or be prepared to wait for a table.

P.S. You can wait in Your Wine Cellar for your table in The Brew Kettle. Beer/wine? Win/win!

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative


Every single day, someone asks us – “What are you doing now that you are retired?” Well, today we finally have something to show for our fall efforts. We have posted the first images of re-Lit Candles on Etsy, Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest – and now – here. My husband and I began meeting with our close friends during the summer to discuss what we would do in retirement besides drink wine by candlelight out on the deck late into the night. We had retired from 30 years as high school English teachers, and our friend, Laurie, retired at the same time with the same length of tenure as a Media Specialist. We commiserated about all of the books we brought home from school, all the changes being made in public schools – and all the wine bottles in our recycling. Would the neighbors start to talk?

Sometime in August, we decided in earnest to set aside some of our newly acquired free time for the Greater Good. And re-Lit Candles was born. We played around with many names, but we wanted to keep a focus on Literature – and more importantly, Literacy.

re-Lit Candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative

We made up a word! Why not! Reliteration – noun – the purposeful enjoyment of natural light.

re-Lit candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiatiWe wrote our “story” and David designed a Kraft paper label which we had printed by the good people at Ink It Press in Vermilion, Ohio. The prototype labels were printed on the back of Trader Joe’s bags, but we figured we would go broke shopping to keep labels in stock. We found a source of bottles that were not being recycled. Jim practiced cutting and sanding bottles, with much trial and error. Laurie researched wax supply and wick resources. We practiced filling containers, watching wicks burn – all the while drinking a bit of wine to keep encouraged.

re-Lit candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative


David took advantage of some rare winter Ohio sunshine to take 150 photographs today. This one features a school desk from the school his father and grandfather attended in Delaware, Ohio. Old books make good props. They burned plenty of candles in The Grapes of Wrath – didn’t they?

re-Lit Candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative


Even Shakespeare looks like a good choice next to the right candle.

re-Lit candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative


We will have a table at Bazaar Bizarre Valentine’s Shop, a Craft Fair in Cleveland in February. We are talking to area retailers. I applied for a transient vendors license. Above all, we want to keep the focus on literacy and intend to send a portion of our profits to a local literacy initiative.

re-Lit Candle

Recycled Wine Bottle Candles raise money for local literacy initiative

What have we been doing? What we enjoy, what makes sense, what is go

Returning to the Classroom After Christmas Break

January 6th, 2013 | Posted by Lackey in My Teaching Life - (0 Comments)

This is my first Christmas of retirement and I still find myself calling the week between the holidays “break”. Although I have enjoyed being able to bake a few more Christmas cookies and spend more guilt-free time enjoying family, I will miss returning to the classroom the day after Christmas break because it was one of my favorite days of the year. Instead of smacking students with a lesson, I preferred giving them a chance to talk – and listen to one another. I would put categories on the board –

  • Something I Gave
  • Something I Got
  • Something I Saw
  • Something I Read

We wold go around the room sharing the highlights of our breaks. In my senior classes, students were encouraged to change I Got to I Got Into if they had college acceptance news. We talked about movies, travels, annoying family members, and always – books. It gave me an opportunity to bring in the books I had been reading over break and share my family stories too. It was always one day of the year that students listened.

I just realized this Christmas, we sort of recreated this with our gift giving for our, now adult, children. This year, we postponed Christmas and didn’t open a single gift until December 26th, the day my son, who works in another state as a paramedic, was able to get home. Santa brought brown paper wrapped gifts labeled with red tags tied with baker’s twine.

  • Something I Want
  • Something I Need
  • Something to Wear
  • Something to Read

I had read about this idea and decided we needed a new tradition. We also drew names at Thanksgiving and had to make something for the person whose name we drew. My gift was a lovely rosemary butter sculpture.

Oberlin High School Workshop

January 5th, 2013 | Posted by Lackey in My Teaching Life - (0 Comments)



  Flipped Out Socrates – Resources and Links


Susan Cain Resources

Take the Quiet Quiz

Susan Cain at Ted-Ed

Susan Cain on TED with Transcript

Quiet by Susan Cain – Bonus Content including RSA Animation

Susan Cain’s Website

Today’s Handouts –

Pre-Socratic Seminar Question Writing

Socratic Instructions


Closing Video

Somebody That I Used to Know Parody – Ted-Ed

Additional Links, Handout and Web Resources

TED-ED Lessons Worth Sharing

TED Blog – Flip this Lesson

National Paideia Center  – Excellent resources for teachers and principals

Introduction to Socratic Seminars

Socratic Seminars

Socratic Seminar Evaluation Tally 20 points

Using Blooms to Promote your Understanding of Text

Simplified Blooms for Students

Blended Learning Professional Development Courses by David and Linda Lackey

WVIZ Idea Stream Brochure PDF

 Today’s Workshop Powerpoint

Flipped Out Socrates