Jacki Kellum

Juxtapositions: Read My Mind

Month: January 2017 (page 1 of 2)

Free E-book Black Beauty Project Gutenberg


The Jacki Kellum Book Classic for February is Black Beauty, and you can read the entire book online Free Here

Many do not realize it, but Black Beauty is an old book classic. It was written in 1877 by Anna Sewell.

“Black Beauty is an 1877 novel by English author Anna Sewell. It was composed in the last years of her life, during which she remained in her house as an invalid.[1] The novel became an immediate best-seller, with Sewell dying just five months after its publication, but having lived long enough to see her only novel become a success. With fifty million copies sold, Black Beauty is one of the best-selling books of all time.[2]

“While forthrightly teaching animal welfare, it also teaches how to treat people with kindness, sympathy, and respect. In 2003, the novel was listed at number 58 on the BBC’s survey The Big Read.[3]” Wikipedia

Meet Ivy – The Asian American Girl Doll – Celebrate Chinese New Year

Learn about Chinese New Year and Celebrate Diversity through the American Girl Doll Ivy Ling.

“Did you know? At Chinese New Year, families get together to celebrate. Red is the color for good luck in China. Houses are decorated in red paper cuttings symbolizing happiness, good fortune, and long life.

“Ivy’s family always has a big party to celebrate Chinese New Year. Ivy’s shimmering red silk dress is a special gift for the New Year celebrations.” American Girl Ultimate Visual Guide, p. 98.

Ivy and Julie were best friends, but Julie moved away, leaving Ivy feeling sad and alone.

“Ivy Ling wants her family to be proud of her and their Chinese heritage is very important to her. But when a big gymnastics tournament falls on the same day as her family reunion, Ivy has to learn how to balance her present with her past.” American Girl Ultimate Visual Guide, p. 99.



Julie and Ivy lived in San Francisco during the late 1960’s and early 1970’s. That was the Hippie era, and the teens often altered their blue jeans, creating accessories. Ivy made a purse out of her jeans. The Hippies often sewed and painted rainbows and flowers on their clothes, too. They had Flower Power and loved Peace.

Ivy Ling was created in 1966, but she was retired a few years later. Now, she is a collector’s item. Julie is still sold at the American Girl Doll Stores.

©Jacki Kellum January 25, 2016




We Are All Earthlings – Lyrics and Music Video with Introduction by Jacki Kellum

Saturday is Chinese New Year’s, and I thought it might be nice to remember that all of us–animals and people–live on the same planet Earth.

©Jacki Kellum January 24, 2017

We Are All Earthlings Lyrics

Some of us have feathers
Some of us have fins
Some of us are furry
And some of us have skins
We swim and hop and slither
And leap and soar and run
And we all live together
On a planet of the sun

We are all earthlings
We are all earthlings
Spinning around together
On a planet of the sun

We live in the desert
We live inside a tree
We live high in the mountains
Or deep beneath the sea
We live in tents and cabins
In houses just for one
And we all live together
On a planet of the sun

We are all earthlings
We are all earthlings
Spinning around together
On a planet of the sun

Floating down a river
Swinging through the trees
Climbing up a mountain
Going with the breeze
All of us can have a happy healthy place to be
If we can float and swim and climb in earthling harmony

We are all earthlings
We are all earthlings
Spinning around together
On a planet of the sun

Spinning around together
On a planet of the sun



My First Chinese New Year by Karen Katz – A Picture Book

My First Chinese New Year – Written and Illustrated by Karen Katz – Read by Jacki Kellum – Free Picture Book Video with Illustrations

©Jacki Kellum January 24, 2017

Pride and Prejudice Chapter 3 – Free Audiobook, Quotes, and Notes


“To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love.” [The Narrator] – Jane Austen

“Mr. Darcy soon drew the attention of the room by his fine, tall person, handsome features, noble mien, and the report, which was in general circulation within five minutes after his entrance, of his having ten thousand a year.”

Image result for pride and prejudice dancing

“She is tolerable; but not handsome enough to tempt me; and I am in no humour at present to give consequence to young ladies who are slighted by other men. You had better return to your partner and enjoy her smiles, for you are wasting your time with me.” [Mr. Darcy] – Jane Austen

“His character was decided. He was the proudest, most disagreeable man in the world, and every body hoped that he would never come there again”. [The Narrator] – Jane Austen

 Illustration of Mr. Darcy by Robert Ball

Description of Mr. Darcy:

“…his fine, tall person, handsome features, noble mien, and the report which was in general circulation within five minutes after his entrance, of his having ten thousand a year. The gentlemen pronounced him to be a fine figure of a man, the ladies declared he was much handsomer than Mr. Bingley, and he was looked at with great admiration for about half the evening, till his manners gave a disgust which turned the tide of his popularity; for he was discovered to be proud; to be above his company, and above being pleased; and not all his large estate in Derbyshire could then save him from having a most forbidding, disagreeable countenance, and being unworthy to be compared with his friend.”

Description of Mr. Bingley:

“He was quite young, wonderfully handsome, extremely agreeable, and, to crown the whole, he meant to be at the next assembly with a large party. Nothing could be more delightful! To be fond of dancing was a certain step towards falling in love; and very lively hopes of Mr. Bingley’s heart were entertained.

“If I can but see one of my daughters happily settled at Netherfield,” said Mrs. Bennet to her husband, “and all the others equally well married, I shall have nothing to wish for.” …

“Mr. Bingley was good-looking and gentlemanlike; he had a pleasant countenance, and easy, unaffected manners.

[During the party, Mr. Bingley danced every dance, and he seemed to be particularly interested in the eldest of the Bennet sisters, Jane. Because there were fewer men at the dance than ladies, Elizabeth was forced to sit during a few dances, and she overheard a conversation between Bingley and Darcy]:

“Elizabeth Bennet had been obliged, by the scarcity of gentlemen, to sit down for two dances; and during part of that time, Mr. Darcy had been standing near enough for her to hear a conversation between him and Mr. Bingley, who came from the dance for a few minutes, to press his friend to join it.

“Come, Darcy,” said he, “I must have you dance. I hate to see you standing about by yourself in this stupid manner. You had much better dance.”

“I certainly shall not. You know how I detest it, unless I am particularly acquainted with my partner. At such an assembly as this it would be insupportable. Your sisters are engaged, and there is not another woman in the room whom it would not be a punishment to me to stand up with.”

“I would not be so fastidious as you are,” cried Mr. Bingley, “for a kingdom! Upon my honour, I never met with so many pleasant girls in my life as I have this evening; and there are several of them you see uncommonly pretty.”

 [About Elizabeth’s sister Jane]:

You are dancing with the only handsome girl in the room,” said Mr. Darcy, looking at the eldest Miss Bennet.

“Oh! She is the most beautiful creature I ever beheld! But there is one of her sisters sitting down just behind you, who is very pretty, and I dare say very agreeable. Do let me ask my partner to introduce you.”

“Which do you mean?” and turning round he looked for a moment at Elizabeth, till catching her eye, he withdrew his own and coldly said: “She is tolerable, but not handsome enough to tempt me….”

Back at home, Mrs. Bennet expressed her feelings about Mr. Darcy:

“But I can assure you,” she added, “that Lizzy does not lose much by not suiting his fancy; for he is a most disagreeable, horrid man, not at all worth pleasing. So high and so conceited that there was no enduring him! He walked here, and he walked there, fancying himself so very great! Not handsome enough to dance with! I wish you had been there, my dear, to have given him one of your set-downs. I quite detest the man.”




Pride and Prejudice Free Audio Recording and Quotes – Chapter 2


“She (Mrs. Long) is a selfish, hypocritical woman, and I have no opinion of her.” [Mrs. Bennet] – Jane Austen

Pride and Prejudice Free Audio Recording and Notes


“It is a truth universally acknowledged, that a single man in possession of a good fortune, must be in want of a wife.” … Jane Austen

“Why, my dear, you must know, Mrs. Long says that Netherfield is taken by a young man of large fortune from the north of England; that he came down on Monday in a chaise and four to see the place, and was so much delighted with it, that he agreed with Mr. Morris immediately; that he is to take possession before Michaelmas, and some of his servants are to be in the house by the end of next week.”

“What is his name?”


“Is he married or single?”

“Oh! Single, my dear, to be sure! A single man of large fortune; four or five thousand a year. What a fine thing for our girls!” – Mrs. Bennet

Short Video Illustrating the Timeline of the Historical American Girl Dolls & A Discussion of How American Girl Dolls Are Important Teaching Resources

©Jacki Kellum January 19. 2017

See More at jackikellum.com Here: http://jackikellum.com/american-girl-dolls-are-an-excellent-way-to-learn-american-history/

American Girl Dolls Are An Excellent Way to Learn American History

You may believe that the American Doll experience is limited to nothing more than the buying of expensive dolls, but that is not the case. From the very beginning, Pleasant T. Rowland launched the company as a way to teach the history of America to girls, and from the beginning, the dolls spanned several generations.

1764 – Kaya – Historically speaking, Kaya is the first American Girl Doll, and she represents the Nez Perce people who migrated down into America during the Ice Age. Although people often say that Native Americans were always here, the reality is that all of the people in the USA are immigrants. But Kaya’s people and other Native Americans got here first.

1774 – Felicity is the Revolutionary War Doll.

1812  – Caroline represents the era of America’s War of 1812.

1824 – Josefina represents the Mexican immigrants before New Mexico was a state.

1854 – Kirsten represents the Swedish immigrants and the Pioneers during the Westward movement. She lived in Minnesota.

1864 – Addy was a run-away slave during the Civil War.

1904 – Samantha represents the period when women began to be recognized as equal to men. She represents the turn-of-the-century Suffragist era.

1914 – Rebecca Rubin represents the Russian Jews who immigrated to New York City.

1934 – Kit was a tom-boy during the Great Depression. She was interested in writing.

The List goes on. We have Molly from the World War II era and  Maryellen from the 1950’s

Melody is from the 1960’s, and she represents the popularity of Motown Music and the Civil Rights Movement.

Julie represents the Hippie movement of the late Sixties and the early Seventies.

It would be easy to dismiss the American Girl Doll Company and accuse it of being too commercial and too expensive, but when we look more carefully at the teaching that the company fosters, we need to think again.

In my opinion, The American Girl Doll Company is one of the greatest teaching resources available, and I am thrilled to be in a position to share what I have learned about America through American Girl Dolls.

©Jacki Kellum January 19, 2017


Pride and Prejudice – Comparing the Keira Knightley Movie to the Jane Austen Text

This week, I am launching a Classics Book Club at my local library, and I hope to share as much as possible of my notes here, as well as on YouTube.  I’ll begin with Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice.  For several reasons, I believe that Jane Austen is a great place to begin studying the classics. Among other things, Jane Austen broke several rules, and I admire her spunk.

To begin to show some of the ways that Austen arched ahead, I’ll tell you a bit about some of Austen’s peers–or near-peers.

Until 1850, when he died, William Wordsworth lived with his wife and sister in Grasmere, England.

William Wordsworth is the well-known Romantic poet who wrote the famous poem about Daffodils:

I wandered lonely as a cloud
That floats on high o’er vales and hills,
When all at one I saw a crowd,
A host, of golden daffodils…. William Wordsworth

What many do not know is that William Wordsworth’s sister also wrote in her journal about the same field of daffodils that William describes. In fact, some believe that Dorothy wrote about the daffodils first, and that Wordsworth followed her lead.

One reason that this is not known is that the Wordsworths lived at a time that females were not encouraged to write for publication.

Mary Ann Evans lived until 1880, which was thirty years after Wordsworth died, and she wrote Silas Marner and other books under the male pen name George Eliot.


Charlotte Brontë, who lived until 1855, wrote Jane Eyre under the male pen name Currer Bell.

Charlotte’s sister Emily, who lived until 1848, wrote Wuthering Heights under the male pen name Ellis Bell. It was a general practice for female writers of Austen’s time to hide behind male pen names.

Jane Austen lived, wrote, and died before the Brontës or George Eliot, but she defied the societal norms by writing under the pen name “A Lady.” Jane Austen made no effort to pretend that a man had written her books.

Every time that I read the book Pride and Prejudice or that I watch the movie, I am amazed by all of the ways that Elizabeth Bennet, the protagonist, defies the rules of society. When I first watched Keira Knightley in her portrayal of  Elizabeth, I found myself questioning whether the movie was true to the text. It seemed to me that Keira was far too brassy and too tough to accurately portray the way that I believed that Austen would have actually written her. I decided to do an in-depth comparison of the movie with the text, and I discovered that Jane had written Elizabeth in just the way that the movie portrays her.

Keira Knightley and Elizabeth Bennet and Jane Austen have all melded together in my mind, and now, I view Keira Knightley as the manifestation of Jane Austen herself. 

In my opinion, Pride and Prejudice stands at the top of what is wonderful about English literature.

And Jane Austen was undeniably far ahead of her time.

All of us are fortunate that Masterpiece Theater, PBS, and BBC have perfected the art of portraying Jane Austen’s books and other works like them. I am both a visual and a verbal person, and I love the 2005 movie version of Pride and Prejudice as much as I love the book–perhaps even more.  I cannot imagine reviewing the book  Pride and Prejudice without comparing it to the movie.

I hope that all of you will check back several times this month. I  hope to have completed my review of this classic by he end of January. I’ll share the companion videos of my notes as I complete them.

©Jacki Kellum January 19, 2017




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