|©the enchanted easel 2014|
|©the enchanted easel 2014|
I'm not sure if I've posted this one before, birthday images are a bit thin on the ground in my work. It's from Tim Wynne-Jones' The Boat in the Tree (Front Street, 2007 - now Boyds Mills Press).
We will publish new world wide Meon Book site recently.
The titles of books are translated to English. You can change titles as you like. Our fantastic illustrations will be accepted well.
We will expand globally, and deliver happy gifts for birthday, anniversary, new baby, christmas and weddings.
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I hate greeting cards. Oh sure, I’ve been touched by the sentimental commercials. Maybe I shed a tear, maybe not. But they didn’t inspire to me buy a card or like them.
The only cards that resonate with me are blank cards. In this day and age, if someone takes the time to write their own thoughts out and mail it – that is a treasure.
What greeting cards really say in their flourishing font is: “I’m lazy!”
Write this in your card: “I was too lazy to set a few minutes aside to put my own thoughts into words, so here are some prepackaged, canned, inauthentic thoughts that a wanna-be romance writer who hasn’t shaved in weeks and smokes big cigars in Spokane thought were relevant just for you, my sweetest. Please say ‘Awwwww’ and kiss me.”
Frankly, greeting cards are disingenuous at best.
When I was a kid, they were just speed bumps to the present. Oh sure, I would pretend to read them on my way to disemboweling the wrapping paper that stood between me and the gift. I liked the ones Aunt Eunice would underline so I could skip most of the words – kind of a cliff notes version. Later in life, she began underlining every word, including the price and printing information – which made it less helpful. Of course, by then she was wrapping up ten year-old toasters and place mats for presents, so haste was less of a concern.
Greeting cards and I have a turbulent history. Since I am negatively disposed against them, they do their best to shame me at every turn. Instead of bowing to their convenience and paying the price, I try to take the time to write personal notes, especially to my lovely wife. But there are instances when I run out of time and am forced to rush into the store and get one. When this happens, I treat it like a commando raid – rush in, select the victim, and get out before anyone gets hurt. I choose based on color and frill, often neglecting to check the sentiment inside – time is what I lack, anyway. With that method, it is pretty easy to stay away from sympathy and get-well cards, but sometimes (okay, most of the time), the sentiment of my selection doesn’t match the occasion or is age inappropriate. That is where The Hallmark Conspiracy comes in.
Take this week. This week marked her birthday. I had a great present in advance, but completely forgot the stupid card until the day of. So I put on my camo, blacked my eyes and descended upon the grocery store. Although every fiber of my cheap being steered me to the 99¢ rack, I’ve been warned about those and went all out – $3.99! I found the birthday section, saw one with a cute little boy and girl on it and dashed out of the store.
Here is what I got:
Mis-shelved! The card was mis-shelved! I swear I was in the birthday section!
Swine greeting cards!!!!!!
Someday society will truly be paperless and I won’t have to deal with these verbose phonies. Until then, I’ll shred a few in effigy and steer clear of the aisle altogether.
William Shakespeare was born 450 years ago this month, in April 1564, and to celebrate Oxford Scholarly Editions Online is testing your knowledge on Shakespeare quotes. Do you know your sonnets from your speeches? Find out…
Need a clue or two? Then take a look at our Shakespeare birthday infographic!
Oxford Scholarly Editions Online (OSEO) is a major publishing initiative from Oxford University Press, providing an interlinked collection of authoritative Oxford editions of major works from the humanities, including the complete Oxford Shakespeare series.
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Image credit: The Droeshout portrait of William Shakespeare. Public domain via Wikimedia Commons.
My agent for children's books in the USA is the Laura Rennert of the marvellous Andrea Brown Literary. This year the head of the agency Andrea is celebrating a milestone birthday, and the other agents had the idea to commission a piece of original artwork from one of the agency's illustrators to be framed and presented as a gift from the staff.
Guess which artist they chose?
Readers, I have now become a woman d'un certain âge. Many would say that with age comes wisdom; I maintain that my main function in the world is to be enthusiastic, not wise. And yet I do have some recent discoveries to share with you--a sort of public service announcement, a list of birthday discoveries that you might not want to miss. (And, as various Documentations of Interventions must be completed for various students exhibiting various needs for intervention, my PSA will be merely a list of thanks with links.)
0) Thanks to Mary Lee: reading must be risked (see number 11 at link) despite and because of that gone feeling you get from the ideal book for the moment.
1) Thanks to the Wyngate Arts Exhibition: "The Cup Song" is a perfect variety show number for elementary school girls--far more appropriate than, say, "Please Don't Stop the Music."
2) Thanks to Mark and Kim at Baltimore's Area 405's Supper and a Movie: Paris, Texas is a film worth returning to 1984 for.
3) Thanks to DJ Ivan and lots of my friends: dance party knows no age, and the "tea dance" is a concept that deserves a popular general update!
4) Thanks to my mom, personal shopper: a bright new fruit bowl can just transform one's attitude in the kitchen.
5) Thanks to my own good sense: on the first sunny warm afternoon of nominal spring, three spa treatments is plenty and four is just excessive.
6) Thanks to writerly friends Tabatha Yeatts and Laura Shovan: virtual is very fine, but you can't beat lunch with Pisces persons at a nice vegan restaurant with gifties from Robyn Hood Black's artsyletters shop.
7) Thanks to British in-laws Teresa O'Brien and John White: poets Liz Cashdan, Gillian Clarke, Rebecca Elson, Beatrice Garland, Christopher Reid. Golly.
8) Thanks to creative, clever, caring offspring: coupons for fancy meals, ten-minute massages, and happy playlists. Something to look forward to is a great gift. (And unlinkable children is probably also a great gift.)
9) Thanks to beloved spouse: Sonos upstairs, Sonos downstairs, Sonos all around! Please don't stop the music. And also The Flavour Thesaurus, a synaesthetizing thing of joy.
10) Thanks to my juicy little universe: gratitude is good medicine.
Today's Poetry Friday round-up is hosted by Kara at the intriguingly-named blog Rogue Anthropologist. Wishing you all some of this same birthday enthusiasm this week, birthday or not!
” I was dreaming when I wrote this. So sue me if I go to fast.” – Prince and The Revolution
Puppicasso took a long break from all that predicting, because it was getting way too unpredictable.
But today he turned six years old.
From six months to six years he has been living the adopted life, and from nine months he moved into his Breaking Bad life. He grew up in the Burbank offices, and early on came to know a fellow named Eddie –
Puppicasso’s first prediction of 2014 was made in 2009, when he sat not so patiently next to Eddie knowing that his mom would be Nominated for one today!
Here’s to hoping that the American Cinema Editors Eddie Awards Ceremony allows Puppis in to enjoy and all the meat they can eat!
Pupp extends his paw up for a paw/fist bump to the other people that gave him belly rubs and fed him while they were trying to cut — Skip Macdonald, Kelley Dixon, and Chris McCaleb!
He thanks Lynne Willingham for lending her Breaking Bad Eddie Award so he could facilitate his long term prediction– five years in the making!
The time book mom and blogger, stepped up: Jenny at Babies, Books and Bows couldn’t believe
the fear and didn’t want to see the gorgeous picture book Golden Domes and Silver Lanterns (American Library Association Notable Children’s Bk 2013; Notable Children’s Trade Book/Social Studies 2013) removed from the Scholastic bookfair at her daughter’s school after a parent protest about the book. Jenny spoke up. In her letter to the bookfair rep, she stated
[O]ne of the reasons we love the school is the diverse population. She goes to school with kids from different cultures, that speak different languages, and have different beliefs. We have raised our daughter to be kind and empathetic to her classmates, to learn from them, to listen to them with an open heart instead of shunning them away with fear. It is the fear that drives the request to have the book removed.
As a book fair volunteer, I watched as the children searched the shelves for books that were interesting, that were fun, and to which they could relate. Our school population has many Muslim students, and the students should not be taught that a book about their culture in a beautifully illustrated children’s book is akin to terrorism, as [was] inferred from [the] comments [cited] in the paper. Also, there were many books about other religions and cultures available at the book fair, including books about Christmas, Hanukkah, and Greek Mythology, just to name a few. So [the] comment that there was not any representation from other cultures or religions is baseless.
I think Judy Blume put it best when she said, “Let children read whatever they want and then talk about it with them. If parents and kids can talk together, we won’t have as much censorship because we won’t have as much fear.”
She then bought a copy of the book to giveaway on her blog.
The post in which she writes about Latina representation in YA and the responses are from authors who struggle to diversify their writing: she makes a valid point. YA fiction for any teen who is not White can be a challenge to find. Blacks and Latinos had been relegated to “urban” fiction which often focused on gangs and violence but not even that can’t even be found now. Cambodian American, Guatemalan American and Puerto Rican authors know how the language flows, power structures and celebratory practices. Sure, there have been authors who have written outside their culture and gotten it right, but it’s not because they read a book about how to do it. It’s because they’ve been immersed in other cultures. “Some of their best friends are Black”. Their list of favorite books is as diverse and the music they listen to and the food they eat. Otherwise, they’re pretty much just faking it. If you don’t know it, you probably shouldn’t write about it. If your world is all White, then write your book! If it’s good, authentic story it will sell!
I scratch my head when I think about all the authors of color I haven’t seen on the shelf in a mighty long time while at the same time white authors are trying to expand their repertoire. Coo Booth. Varian Johnson. Mitali Perkins. Neesha Meminger. Paula Yoo. Torrey Maldonado.
I’m about to get back to my book stack. Two months left. A book a day, my friends; a book a day! Before I get back,
The day my daughter was born: I have to wish my daughter the happiest of birthdays. I honestly don’t know how she got so old, but she’s celebrating her 29th (for the first time). Kristen is the person who first made me realize how difficult it is for teens of color to find books about teens like themselves. Kris attending a high school with close to 2000 students and it’s a high school that has long been known for it’s diversity. I guess diversity was all in the student population, but not in the library. I was a social studies teacher then and could find her a few books I’d read, but being that teen struggle for independence, she didn’t want books I’d read. I remember finding Coldest Winder Ever for her. I think the most recent book I gave her was City of Glass, which she enjoyed enough to read the series. We read and discussed books while we lived in Taiwan, but our reading interests are not quite the same. That doesn’t matter. What matters is simply that she reads. And, that she is a beautiful young lady with a vibrant energy who is making a difference exposing human trafficking with her camera.
Saturday. 9 November. Wishing you all memories of today that are as good as mine.
A busy Saturday taking a group of seven giggling, sugar infused 10 year olds to the bowling alley for a belated birthday celebration (September is bad time for birthdays in our family - soccer season followed by the holidays...next thing you know, you're having a birthday party in January).
|Top: The "I'm growing weary of these toys" look|
We celebrated another b-day this past weekend and Ocee turned 2. He went around all day saying “Happy Day!” Robots were the theme so I used the robot classroom decor I illustrated for Creative Teaching Press as the party decorations. I even use some of it for the cake.
All the food was robot themed too and we also used out metal robot collection for the table too. I knew those little guys would come in handy one day!
Close up of the cake:
Can you say it three times fast?
Sorry I haven’t been around much in the last week or so. Now that a certain girl’s
coronation birth day weekend week is over, I’m coming up for air.
We did it, folks. We survived a sleepover birthday party (plus days of other celebratory activities) and lived to tell the tale. I’m not exactly sure how she
hypnotized talked us into the sleepover. All told, it went pretty well, though, and thankfully, the girls got along.
One highlight of the party was “Pass the Parcel,” which our daughter learned from her British (and half-British) friends in Germany. It’s really a fun, sweet game, and you can organize it so that everyone feels like they’ve won.
Basically, you have a small prize wrapped up in layers upon layers of wrapping paper. You pass the parcel around while music plays, and each time the grown up stops the music, the person holding the parcel gets to unwrap a layer. Ideally, each layer holds a tiny prize (in this case, Jolly Ranchers) and there’s at least one layer for each player.
We got distracted a bit while wrapping our parcel, and some layers—oops!—were empty. Nevermind, the girls were gracious and divided the candy evenly at the end.
At the center, we placed a collection of polymer clay beads and linen string, so each kid could make a necklace, bracelet, or key chain thingy. I had them pass the bead collection around and let each child choose a bead until they were all gone. Thankfully, there wasn’t much fuss about who got what colors. They’re all pretty, right?
Then each child strung the beads into the desired shape. So fun.
My kids and I had made the beads months earlier, with no thought of a party. I was inspired by this lovely post, which includes instructions, but I couldn’t figure out a way to string them in a way that suited me, so they sat around for months. I think I’ll try making some for me again—we have more clay.
Anyway the beads were a hit, and the activity was just enough—not too long, not too frustrating. We may have to make “Pass the Parcel” a party staple!
Hey all I’m 50 today! It’s freaking crazy How did I get here…in the middle of things? “One day at a time,” my hubby said. LOL! Yes, that’s true. And now that I’m here, in the middle of things, I realize I have to get my butt in gear and do a lot of things I want to but haven’t. I’m going to make time this year to cross a bunch of things off my list I’m starting today by doing two BIG things I’ve always wanted to do #squeeee. More about that later! But, today, what better to way to celebrate then to read about some great authors and their books and one thing on their bucket list! So exciting to have these fabulous, talented authors celebrate with me today! So, pour a tasty beverage and join in the fun!
Save 50% on this great book & enter the giveaway at the bottom of the post!
“I want to take my dad to Ireland. We need to explore our roots.” – Author Amy Harmon
(Details on how to enter at the end of this post!)
(Can we call it something else? Got any good ideas of what to call this list? Maybe a Dream Come True List? Or, Gotta Get it Done List?)
Here’s what’s up for grabs on this BUCKET LIST GIVEAWAY & the authors share what’s on their list too Enjoy!
“I want to see at least 2 of the seven wonders of the world.” – Author, Quinn Loftis
enter to win her book:
The last few days have been the darkest of Sally’s life. After experiencing the joy of finding her mate, she now suffers the pain of losing everything she holds dear. Both the Romanian and Serbian packs have been captured, ripping Sally’s soul mate away from her almost as soon as she had found him. Her best friend and the emotional glue that usually holds Sally together, Jacque Pierce, lies writhing in a restless coma, having been put down by Desdemona’s dark magic. Jennifer Adams, the unshakable one, has revealed to her friends and her mate that she is pregnant, but the Fates have marked her unborn baby for death. Though she rails against the darkness, deep inside Jen knows that Decebel’s baby must die as payment for her own life, and the knowledge is tearing her soul to pieces. Cypher, King of the Warlocks, has claimed Jacque’s mother as his mate and agreed to help Desdemona open a door that would release a horde of demons from beyond the Veil….
“I want to design & build an off the grid house” - Stacey Wallace Bienefel
He stole her lipstick…and her heart.
Twenty-year-old Dani Walker can’t believe her luck when she’s paired up with the gorgeous Liam Garrett as her Acting I scene partner – or when he ends up in her bed. Being a Plain Jane with a mouth on her hasn’t exactly served Dani well in the guy department. In fact, she’s had nothing but one night stands. Still, she lets go of her insecurities and falls for Liam, despite feeling like he’s holding something back.
When Dani finally discovers Liam’s secret, she must learn the true meaning of accepting the ones we love for who they are, or risk losing the best thing that’s ever happened to her.
BONUS MATERIAL: Excerpt of TOUCHING MELODY by RaShelle Workman
I want to spend a week in Greece! - Adriane Boyd
Twenty -five year old Coraline Renfro is in mourning. She and her long time boyfriend, Blake Parrish, have broken up and Cora hasn’t been dealing with it well. She’s shut herself off from the world around her, and buried herself in her work. Tired of being alone, Cora accepts a date from a colleague, and slowly begins to move on. When Blake comes calling again, will Cora take him back or will she show him how it feels to have a door slammed in his face and his hopes and dreams of a future with her dashed?
“I want to go to take a trip to Ireland” -Bethany Lopez
“I want to eat gelato in Italy” - Heather Self
Mary Anne Moore doesn’t know what she is. She can’t explain why she has lived so long. Or why she never gets sick. Or why the dreams she has come true. She has hidden herself as a lowly servant to the households of Dublin’s English elite for decades, until the night that changes her life. Now her sole purpose is the child she never expected to have. She will do anything in her power to keep the black-eyed monsters from discovering him and turning him into one of them. For Kieran Moore the dark is an ever-present parasite, waiting to devour his humanity. His mother’s love and the girl in his dreams has kept it at bay for years, but the more time that passes—the longer he has to wait for her—the more it grows. When tragedy strikes, it is all he can do to keep from being consumed by the darkness that infects him. He must continue to hold on to the hope of peace her presence will bring him, because it’s not just his fate on the line, but that of the entire world.
“Travel with my parents back to England so my Mum can see her homeland one more time. Will break my heart but it will help hers.” -Carol Kunz
I’m so excited to be a part of Laura Elliot’s Birthday celebration on her blog. She wants me to talk about my Bucket List. For those that don’t know my story, I’ve already accomplished #1 on my list. Three years ago Adam, my son, came to me and told me we were going to write a book together. He knew I’ve always wanted to write a book and to date we have written three, The Childe and Dark Days, the first two books in The Childe Series and The Modified, the first book in The Biotics Trilogy. So #1 on my bucket list has definitely been taken care of!
“I want to be able to write full time” -Adam Kunz
I’m so happy to be on Laura’s blog today. My Bucket List, I can’t believe I need one at my age but my mom told me Laura requested it and I will do anything for Laura. (**Laura here….see we should really call it something other than a bucket list, right?** )
Kenley Grayson is all too familiar with these questions.
After Earth is thrust into its first intergalactic war with an unknown race called the Bringers, our military forces begin to suffer heavy losses. Desperate for a solution, the Allied Federation issues a worldwide draft for every able seventeen year old to enlist. As Kenley turns seventeen, she finds herself thrown into the very war that took her older brother’s life.
This year’s draft is a little different than in the past though. A new program, known as the Magnus Project, has been introduced, and only the best and brightest qualify. Kenley is amongst a select few whom are chosen to join this elite group of soldiers, and as a part of this project, undergoes a modification procedure that leaves her and her peers endowed with powers beyond their wildest dreams.
As Earth continues in its struggle against the Bringers, Kenley is transported to a high-tech training facility, the Magnus Academy, to prepare for the major battle that lies ahead. It’s here that she meets the California heartthrob, and son of a legendary war hero, Landon Shaw. As unexpected feelings toward Landon begin to develop, Kenley wonders if this is the right time or place for romance to bloom, especially when those feelings start to interfere with her training.
With the weight of the world on her shoulders, Kenley is constantly reminded of how important she and the rest of the Magnus cadets are to the fate of humanity. She is one of the Modified, Earth’s last line of defense against utter destruction.
“My dream just came true, No Attachments placed in the top ten on Amazon!”
Ashton Garrison walked away from a privileged life in order to hide from the one thing she’s not willing to face. She knows she left behind a trail of pain, but in the long run, her betrayal will hurt less than the truth. She now has one goal: Live life to the fullest with no regrets and no attachments. She has high hopes that a move to new surroundings will provide the escape she desires, but what Ashton doesn’t count on is how fate always seems to find a way to screw up any good plan. Sometimes, when love comes knocking, the pull is too strong not to answer. Suddenly, what she thought she wanted to escape from is what Ashton now wants more than anything.
Nathan Lockton has one mission: find his target and complete the task he was hired to do—no attachments and no emotion necessary. He’s done it over and over again. What he thought was a typical lost-and-found job has turned into a life examining moment as Nathan is forced to deal with something he has always ignored–his feelings. Now faced with a decision, Nathan must choose to either follow his heart or complete the job.
Love can come when you least expect it. The question is: If the odds are stacked against you, how far are you willing to go for the one you love?
SO…you want to win ALL these fabulous books? Of course you do! It’s easy Just comment on this post with one thing from your bucket list! And you’re entered! I’m even throwing in a copy of Transfer Student & Shadow Slayer:D
Now the BIG REVEAL? What have I wanted to do for nearly 50 years that I haven’t done yet? Well, as you read this, I’m sailing the Caribbean and have anchored in The Bahamas. Hubby and I have been married for 27 years and whenever we’d get a little extra cash, we always said….Great, now we can go to The Bahamas. Well…not so much. With kids, jobs, ya’ know the story. It never happened…UNTIL TODAY! Woot! So I’m crossing off two things. A cruise. And a trip to The Bahamas. So, if you don’t hear from me for a while…you’ll know I’ve been captured by pirates, or something like that! Hee-Hee!
But you’ve made my biggest dream come true by reading and sharing my stories. It’s my dream to be a novelist. Thanks so much for making my dream come true and for all of your support. I can’t tell you how much it means to me.
So…what’ on your bucket list, my friend? MAY ALL YOUR DREAMS COME TRUE!!!!!
GOOD LUCK! THE BUCKET LIST GIVEAWAY IS OPEN UNTIL 12 PM MAY, 26th PST! OPEN INTERNATIONALLY.