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Viewing: Blog Posts Tagged with: blair, Most Recent at Top [Help]
Results 1 - 25 of 41
1. #831 – Quakers by Liz Wong (debut)

Quackers Written and Illustrated by Liz Wong Alfred A. Knopf BYR    3/22/2016 978-0-553511543 32 pages    Ages 3—6 “Quackers is a duck. Sure, he may have paws and whiskers. And his quacks might sound more like…well, meows, but he lives among ducks, everyone he knows is a duck, and he’s happy. Then Quackers meets …

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2. #79XX – Can’t Catch Calico by Elliot Carlson & Kevin McHugh

Can’t Catch Calico Written by Elliot Carlson Illustrations by Kevin McHugh Createspace      7/31/2015 978-1-51709663-2 28 pages        Ages 4—8 “Can’t Catch Calico is a richly illustrated southern tale geared towards kids with physical, cognitive or emotional disabilities. In this first episode, our protagonist finds himself in a pretty serious pickle. But …

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3. #712 -If You Were a Dog by Jamie A. Swenson & Chris Raschka

cover lg.
If You Were a Dog
Written by Jamie A. Swenson
Illustrated by Chris Raschka
Farrar Straus Giroux BYR        9/30/2014
40 pages              Age 3—6

“If you could be any kind of animal, what would you be? Would you be a sod that goes ARRRROOOOOOO? Or maybe you would be a sharp-toothed dinosaur that can CHOMP, STOMP, ROAR! Perhaps you might want to be a hopping frog that goes BOING, BOING, RIBBET! But maybe you would want to be the best kind of animal of all. Can you guess what that is?” [inside jacket]

Using sparse text, including exuberant onomatopœia, and characteristics specific to the animal on the spread, Swenson asks young children how they would act if they were a dog, a cat, a bird, a bug, a frog, and a dinosaur. Each two-spread animal begins its question with a recognizable formula:

“If you were a . . . would you be a . . . ?”

For example, the first animal is the dog.

dog am combo “If you were a dog, would you be a speedy-quick, lickety-sloppy,
best-friend-ever sort of dog?”

The following spread always asks one final question:

dog 2  combo“Would you howl at the moon?  Some dogs do.”

Youngsters will love the questions, especially each of the activity-type characteristics in If You Were a Dog. While not written in rhyme, the text flows nicely. The individual characteristics are ordered such that the similar suffixes following each other. Raschka’s illustrations are child-like in form, yet lively, and capture the text and the reader’s (listener’s), imagination. Young children will not only contemplate how they would act based on the given charactersitics, but are bound to come up with their own. I like anything that activates and stretches a child’s imagination and If You Were a Dog fits that bill nicely.

The final three spreads in If You Were a Dog acknowledge that we cannot become any animal we want, but we can imitate those around us. Besides, kids are told, the best animal to be is yourself.

IF YOU WERE A DOG. Text copyright (C) 2014 by Jamie A. Swenson. Illustrations copyright (C) 2014 by Chris Raschka. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Farrar Straus Giroux Books for Young Readers—an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group, New York, NY.

Purchase If You Were a Dog at AmazonBook DepositoryiTunesMacmillian Children’s Publishing Group.

Learn more about If You Were a Dog HERE.
You can find the CCSS-Aligned Discussion and Activity Guide HERE.

Junior Library Guild selection

Meet the author, Jamie A. Swenson, at her website:  http://www.jamieaswenson.com/
Meet the illustrator, Chris Raschka, at his twitter page:  @ChrisRaschka
Find more children’s books at the Farrar Strauss Giroux BYR website:  http://us.macmillan.com/mackids
Farrar Strauss Giroux BYR is an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group.

Copyright © 2015 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved

Review section word count = 225

Full Disclosure: If You Were a Dog, by Jamie A. Swenson & Chris Raschka, and received from Farrar Strauss Giroux BYR, (an imprint of Macmillan Children’s Publishing Group), is in exchange NOT for a positive review, but for an HONEST review. The opinions expressed are my own and no one else’s. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”

Filed under: 4stars, Children's Books, Library Donated Books, NonFiction, Picture Book Tagged: animal traits, animals, being oneself, Chris Raschka, creativity, Farrar Straus Giroux, If You Were a Dog, imagination, Jamie A. Swenson, self esteem

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4. #696 – I Wish You More by Amy Krouse Rosenthal & Tom Lichtenheld

coverI Wish You More

Written by Amy Krouse Rosenthal
Illustrated by Tom Lichtenheld
Chronicle Books  3/01/2015
40 pages Age 3+
“Some books are about a single wish.
Some books are about three wishes.
This book is about endless wishes.

“Amy Krouse and Tom Lichtenheld have been called the “Fred Astaire and Ginger Rodgers of children’s books” and here they have combined their extraordinary talent to create a compendium of wishes—wishes for curiosity and wonder, friendship and strength, for joyous days and quiet moments.

What will you wish for?”  [book jacket]

I Wish You More is the perfect book for a (grand)parent to give their (grand)child for any occasion or no occasion at all. I Wish You More is also the perfect book to give the child heading off to college, summer camp, or any other get-away.

I wish you more can than knot.

I wish you more can than knot.

Beginning with two children racing with the wind, a kite flying high above, the text reads:  “I wish you more ups than downs.” Each spread continues with a wish and an image expressing that wish. Children will understand most of the test and each of the images. Lichtenheld has created a multicultural set of children, which make the spreads that more adorable—if this is possible.

I Wish You More is simply a wonderful, joyous, high-spirited, positive celebration of what a wish can do for those who receive them, and for those who give them. There really is not much more to say about this beautiful picture book. Read I Wish You More to a young child and they can learn the benefits of kindness and well wishes toward other humans. And, I believe, you can help your little one with their self-esteem.  I Wish You More would have been in my office and read to every child.

I wish you more stories than stars.

I wish you more stories than stars.

Each spread is one wish—one special wish with an equally special illustration. Narrated by the voice of a parent, I Wish You More  concludes by stating it contains all these wishes, “. . . because you are everything I could wish for . . . and more.”

**Chronicle Books is making two posters from the book available for anyone who would like them. This may be for a limited time, I do not know, so go HERE and get your set of two. They are perfect for any child’s room. There is also an activity kit for teachers HERE.

I WISH YOU MORE. Text copyright © 2015 by Amy Krouse Rosenthal. Illustrations copyright © 2015 by Tom Lichtenheld. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Chronicle Books, San Francisco, CA.

Purchase I Wish You More at AmazonBook DepositoryChronicle Books.

Learn more about I Wish You More HERE.

Meet the author, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, at her website:  http://www.whoisamy.com/
Meet the illustrator, Tom Lichtenheld, at his website:  http://www.tomlichtenheld.com/
Find more picture books at the Chronicle Books website:  http://www.chroniclebooks.com/
Copyright © 2015 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved
Review section word count = 222

i wish you more

Filed under: 6 Stars TOP BOOK, Children's Books, Favorites, Library Donated Books, NonFiction, Picture Book, Top 10 of 2015 Tagged: 978-1-4521-2699-9, Amy Krouse Rosenthal, books for parents to give children, Chronicle Books, creative, empowering, I Wish You More, illuminating, reflective, self esteem, Tom Lichtenheld, wishes

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5. #689 – Dress Me! by Sarah Frances Hardy




Dress Me!

Written by Sarah Frances Hardy
Illustrated by Sarah Frances Hardy
Sky Pony Press           5/05/2015
20 pages               Age 3—7
“This little girl can be a lawyer, doctor, superhero, or plumber. She can be graceful, creative, brave, caring, silly, and even scary. She can wear braids or glasses, a crown or a beret. There are infinite, limitless possibilities, and this little girl gets to choose who and what she wants to be. And there’s always the option for her to be ‘just me.’ From the author/illustrator of Paint Me! comes a delightful, imaginative story about a little girl with some incredible aspirations.” [book jacket]

The nameless young girl, along with her loyal puppy, take readers through part of their day as they move from room-to-room, outfit-to-outfit, and activity-to-activity. They start their day deciding what to wear. Deciding to start with some exercise, the girl pulls down her pink tutu, matching top, a violet sash, and . . . wait, what about her feet? No worries, pup has fetched the girl’s pink ballet slippers, dutifully waiting for his friend to slip them on her feet. With a high twirl and a long leap the pair dance, never out of step. The young girl and her dog take on a gamut of outfits (tutu, smock, scrubs, dresses, and masks), and identities (artist, teacher, lawyer, diva, builder, or plumber), as they dance, paint, fly through the air, and take lunch orders.

Dress Me! interior 1pass JAM_page19_image17

Older children have books such as WIGU Publishing’s When I Grow Up I Want to be a . . . series to help them decide what they might like to become. Dress Me does the same for younger children, in terms they y understand. More than that, Dress Me is about being yourself while enjoying who you are, right now. The illustrations tell the majority of the story. I like that Dress Me leaves much of the narration to the reader—or he young listener. While the young girl teaches a couch full of attentive stuffed animals (and one real puppy), the text reads,

“Teacher me.”

I like that kids can decide why the girl is teaching, what she is teaching, and to whom she, dong a great job of blending in to the scene. Pup does the same in this scene. Dress Me will appeal to young girls more than boys, even though Hardy includes male-oriented careers and activities boys enjoy. The illustrations are delightful. Each spread is loaded with detail, adding continuity by carrying items from one spread to the next. For example, the puppy pulls a blue-striped tie from the laundry basket. In the next image he wears the tie while pretending to be in court, on the wrong side of the young girl’s law. She has pushed a pair of glasses atop her head while waitressing and worn correctly as a teacher.

Dress Me is the perfect book for preschoolers beginning to self-explore their world and their place in it. Parents will appreciate the creativity Dress Me can inspire in young girls, who will begin to think out of their prescribed female roles. More importantly, Dress Me encourages young girls to enthusiastically be themselves.

Dress Me! interior 1pass JAM_page19_image14

A final note: the illustrations are the best yet from Hardy who improves with each book. Dress Me! is Hardy’s third book. Her others are Paint Me! and Puzzled by Pink (reviewed HERE).

DRESS ME! Text and illustrations copyright © 2015 by Sarah Frances Hardy. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Sky Pony Press, New York, NY.

Purchase Dress Me! at AmazonBook DepositorySky Pony Press.

Learn more about Dress Me! HERE.
Meet the author/illustrator, Sarah Frances Hardy:
Website:  http://www.sfhardy.com/
Blog:  http://sfhardy.blogspot.com/
Facebook:  http://bit.ly/SarahFrancesHardyFacebook
Twitter:  https://twitter.com/sfhardy2
Find more picture books at the Sky Pony Press website:  http://www.skyponypress.com/

Sky Pony Press is an imprint of Sky Horse Publishing

Also by Sarah Frances Hardy

Paint Me!

Paint Me!

Puzzled by Pink

Puzzled by Pink




Review word count = 455

Copyright © 2015 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews.

dress me ftc

Filed under: 4stars, Library Donated Books, NonFiction, Picture Book Tagged: aspirations, be yourself, Dress Me!, enjoy being yourself, inspiration, little girls books, make-believe, puppies, Sarah Frances Hardy, self esteem, Sky Pony Press

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6. A book on Boundaries and Focusing on the Solution

I was guided this weekend to head over to my local Goodwill shop. Now this wasn’t twisting my arm, because I LOVE that store treasure-hunting. Their book selections are hit or miss and I was grateful I landed on a day that was a HIT. Apparently, someone who is into psychic communication and other forms of healing cleaned out their bookshelf. I found several books that would assist me in what I want to teach right now including color healing and a few books on boundary setting, which is perfect for those that are sensitive.

The book on boundaries, Boundaries with Relationships by Charles T. Whitfield,  has some excellent tools, but perusing through it, I noticed I didn’t feel as excited as I did when I was reading the color healing books. Was the info bringing up too much upset? I could feel a ton of anger rise from inside of me from the many times I allowed others to trample or ignore my boundaries. I also felt a little slimed; even negative. What was happening?

I slept on it. No, literally. Woke up this morning and the book was under my butt, as well as my glasses that looked a little mushed out of place. Perhaps I was integrating the material more. But I also had a new awareness of why I felt uncomfortable. Many self help books are designed to package a set of tools. There are some good ones out there that present them well. After reading this one, I felt labeled, “bad,” (and there were plenty of examples given of what is good and what is bad). Crap, everyone has acted the bad part. Talk about unattainable.

Now don’t get me wrong, there are some excellent parts of the book also, but the slimey feeling was what I wanted to look at.

Guidance this morning was very clear: Focus on the solution and you feel empowered. Focus on the problem, and you are stuck IN the problem.

I see this when folks post videos or comments about what is happening that is wrong on this planet, whether genetically-altered food or bad politics. Hearing that news is like hearing about a case of animal abuse. I am left feeling upset, angry, and helpless against the problem. Helpless = slimed.

I like books and teaching that do not keep me stuck in a label, but helps me get out of that hole into a new role. I’m really digging Julia Cameron’s book, Prosperous Heart right now. I concluded that she teaches like how I want to, by story, and then by supplying a tool to help you empower yourself or shift your thinking. In her exercises, I focus on what I want and I feel hopeful and excited, versus what is not working. I don’t look at lack of abundance, but about what I want to create and the small doable steps. It is important to go back to the past for answers and beliefs that don’t work for you, but I sure don’t want to stay there. Reading her book, I am not labeled BAD because I SHOULD have more if I was just doing the SECRET right. I think I had the same reaction to that line of thinking while reading  the Boundaries book. There are enormous amounts of labels, time periods for how long it would take for when I was ‘better,” and most everyone I know are moving very fast right now in their healing beyond any so-called timetables. No one heals when they are stuck under a label, especially when they stay in their pain.

Perhaps it is my upbringing that is the button being pressed here. We were raised with psychology night and day. My father is a psychologist, my mother was a social worker. We were punished or admonished by psychological terms and labels. I would have preferred just being yelled at. Either way, what it produced in me at the time was a sense of dis-empowering; it was just another way to feel shame. I suppose it has the same effect as different educational programs that “weed” out people so only the strong can survive. I went to one design program that set impossible expectations and deadlines and gave out ample criticism. I walked a

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7. Be Positive!

Check out this article by Anya Strzemien at The Huffington Post, which is collecting comments for a good cause. Simply give yourself a compliment! For every comment up to 5,000, the Huffington Post Media Group will donate $1 to Girls Inc. I pointed readergirlz diva Melissa Walker to the article and she immediately posted about it at I Heart Daily. As Melissa said, "How cool is that?"

I told my friend Amber Benson about it as well, and she tweeted: "Say something positive about yourself and help raise some money for Girls Inc - JUST DO IT!"
 Go to the Huffington Post website and leave your comments by April 10th! Then post, tweet, et cetera, and encourage others to do the same.

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8. Miss Emily Goes to Bat by Trina Ayling

A to Z Challenge Day 13: M .  5 Stars Miss Emily the cat can’t catch anything!  William and Thomas are determined to help her be like other cats.  They decide that she just needs a few lessons on catching.  With the help of the local baseball coach they’re certain Miss Emily will finally learn.  [...]

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9. Oli’s Uncommon Cents by Deborah Allen

5 STARS From the back cover: Through the life and death of her grandfather, 12-year-old Oli receives a pouch that holds the lives of abandoned,  but unique coins, coins adopted by her grandfather—and now hers.  Bearing their mint inscription, In God We Trust, Oli’s coins entrust their lives with hers as she searches for the [...]

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10. Knees: The Mixed-Up World f a Boy with Dyslexia by Vanita Oelschlager

 5 Stars Sometimes I feel bad when I am in school. ………………..–Knees Louis the Third is in the fourth grade.  He is a typical boy with bright, alert eyes and a kid-style smirk for a smile.  Louis likes school—sometimes.  School is not easy for Louis.  He has a “mixed-up brain” that often sees things differently [...]

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11. All By Myself! by Emile Jadoul

 5 Stars All By Myself! Emile Jadoul Eerdmans Books for Y.R. 978-08028-5411-7 26 pages, ages 3+ 140 miles north of my home is a publisher with some fantastic books.  I try to bring them to you every chance I get, and today is one of those times.  I am so happy to bring you All [...]

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12. Otter Lee Brave by Rena Cherry Brown

5 Stars
Otter Lee Brave
Rena Cherry Brown
Schiffer Publishing
No. Pages: 48  Ages: 5 to 10

Lee, a young otter, loses his mother and finds himself in a rescue aquarium where he meets a bully, learns to trust human beings, survives a catastrophe, and, by recalling his mother’s lessons, makes a tough decision that ultimately changes his life.

Lee is a young pup, beginning to learn his way around the bay with his mother as his teacher. He wants to dive deep and bring back clams, impressing his mother, but little Lee think he is too small to dive so deep. His mother tells him,

You don’t have to be big to be brave.

While lying serenely on the water, a dark shadow appears above them. Lee’s mother yells for him to dive to the floor of the bay. Lee dives deep, all the way to the sandy floor. Swimming back to the water’s surface Lee looks for his mother, he cannot find her. She is trapped in a fishing net at the bottom of the bay. Days later, an otter rescue boat picks up Lee and takes him to their aquarium, where he can continue to grow. Without his mother, Lee is an orphan.

At the aquarium, a bully keeps Lee from eating, grabbing away anything within Lee’s reach. This bully, named Brody, taunts Lee in the water. When an earthquake hits the area, the aquarium bursts open, dumping all the otters in the bay. Lee is the only otter born at sea. The others do not know what to do.

Lee tells everyone to link together, but Brody laughs and dives deep into the water. Soon the rescue group has rescued all the otters—except Brody. He never linked up. Lee dives down to the floor looking for Brody and finds him caught under a fishing net. Lee has a tough choice to make. He can ignore Brody and be free of the bully forever, or he can rescue him and be at his mercy once again.

Otter Lee Brave is a good story for any child who has experienced bullying. Brody is the typical bully, be it an otter or a kid. He is mean to those smaller than he is which helps him with his low self-esteem. Lee is a cute, lovable character kids will adore. Some will even identify with him, others with Brody. Lee does his best to avoid the bully, but eventually must stand up to him. That is a terrifying moment and kids will understand Lee’s thoughts about leaving Brody where he was, trapped under water. The writing is wonderful. Kids will get a story and a primer on otters.

The illustrations are dramatic and help draw you into the story emotionally. The first page sets the scene. Lee is lying on the water and you can feel the waves rocking him gently. When Brody splashes in the bay, the water flies around him. Being in the bay, the illustrations rely on blues and greens, which the illustrator uses deftly to make the water come alive.

Otter Lee Brave is a good book for teachers. Students learn about otters, see them in the bay and at a rescue. Learn facts like a life span that averages ten to twelve years, even though they can live to be twenty-five-years-old. That fact is a great discussion question. I think kids will love Lee’s story.

Otter Lee Brave is a well-written, emotional story with stunning illustrations complimenting it on every page. I immensely enjoyed this picture book. The story combined with the illustrations make Otter Lee Brave a richly told story with drama, emotion, and heart. This is Ms. Brown’s second children’s book, both illustrated by Ms. Maidment. This is sure to be an award-winning book.

There are additional otter facts in the back of the book. Kids could easily use Otter Lee Brave as part of a project or paper on otters.


Otter Lee Brave

Author: Rena Cherry Brown   website
Illustrator: Mikaila Maidment   website
Publisher: Schiffer Publishing   website
Release Date: July 28, 2012
ISBN: 978-0-7643-4155-7
Number of Pages: 48
Ages: 5 to 10
Grades: K to 5

Filed under: 5stars, Children's Books, Library Donated Books Tagged: bravery, bullied, bullies, children's books, courage, intimidate, picture books, sea otters, self esteem

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13. Lesson of the Blue Tree Screening

For anyone who has ever felt not enough:

New short film:

If you’d like to donate for my video-making fund:  DONATE HERE

Share if you want…your Not Enough experiences. Better yet, your More Than Enough experiences below in the comments.

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14. Whoever Heard of a Fird? by Othello Bach

5 stars Whoever Heard Of A Fird? Othello Bach Shann Hurst 60 Pages     Ages: 7+ ………….. Back Cover: If you haven’t heard of a fird, part fish, part bird, you don’t know that he’s looking for a head of fird. He wants to find out if he’s “firding” right. You see, Fird was raised by [...]

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15. I am Cow, hear me MOO! – PPBF

Title: I am Cow, hear me MOO! Written by: Jill Esbaum Illustrated by: Gus Gordon Published by: Dial Books for Young Readers, May 2014 Ages: 3 -5 Themes: cows, self-esteem, adventure, fear Opening Lines: Nadine was a truly remarkable cow.     … Continue reading

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16. Hattie the Bad

Hattie the Bad by Jane Devlin, illustrations by Joe Berger

Hattie was a very good little girl until she realized how dull it was.  Then she became Hattie the Bad, doing naughty but very fun things.  The other children loved her, but their parents stopped letting them play with Hattie.  So Hattie decided to be good again, perfect even.  The parents started pushing their children to be more like Hattie, but then the children stopped playing with her because she was so perfect.  Hattie was so very good that she even got an award for being the Best-Behaved Child Ever!  When in front of the cameras and asked to speak, Hattie stopped being good for good.

This book is all about being true to yourself and not trying to be what others expect you to be.  Hattie strikes a nice balance at the end of the book, being quite naughty, with “just a teensy bit of good.”  Devlin’s writing is over the top, adding to the fun and zinging energy of the book.  Berger matches that with his great illustrations.  Though the cover has a limited orangey palette, the book uses a more full spectrum of color.  Nicely, the illustrations have a bit of seventies vibe in them.  Readers should have fun watching for the frogs to appear and reappear throughout the book as well as laughing in glee when Hattie turns back into herself.

A naughty girl, perhaps, but a very nice read.  Appropriate for ages 4-6.

Reviewed from copy received from Dial.

Also reviewed by:

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17. Article on Wishing You Were Someone Else

Do you ever wish you were someone else? That, perhaps, you were ill prepared and the wrong person for your purpose or life?

Check out my essay at Evolvingbeings.com:


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18. Holiday Packages glimpse

“I am enough gown” fairy fashion drawing from the Self Esteem Booster package.

Blogging dog (Miss Emma Lou) from the Dog Lover’s package.

Art journal ephemera from the Women’s Empowerment package.

Comfort Card postcards from the Women’s Empowerment package.

Where to buy them? Go to the Holiday store page.

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19. "More about Our Books from Loving Healing Press," by Victor Volkman

Welcome to Day 4 of this 6-day virtual tour to promote the wonderful books I am fortunate enough to publish. I'm Victor Volkman, CEO of Loving Healing Press, the fastest-growing publishing company devoted to self-growth, recovery, psychology, and social work books.

Today I'd like to tell more about our abuse recovery books for children. We have a variety of authors contributing several different points of view. There are usually a few key goals of the literature. First of all, to make sure the child reading the book (or having it read to him) knows that the abuse was never his fault, he is not to blame for what happened to him. Secondly, to let him know that he is not the only person in the world that this has happened to; he is not somehow uniquely bad or different. Thirdly, to focus on prevention of further incidents, for example by educating about boundaries and what to do if they are not respected. Last, there is an emphasis on discovering feelings, recognizing them, and building on self-image through affirmations and recognizing the positive.

Some of our books build on specific incidents or scenarios. Annabelle’s Secret deals with abuse from an older neighborhood boy. Reena’s Bollywood Dream features an uncle who grooms a girl to make inappropriate movies of her. REPAIR for Kids aged 6 to 12 and the brand new REPAIR for Toddlers are a pair of books by Marjorie McKinnon, a leader whose abuse recovery network has more than 50 chapters worldwide. Her books are largely educational in terms of prevention, what to do in an emergency, games and activities to restore self-esteem and optimism all within a prescribed seven stage program.
I could write or talk about our wonderful books all day. But several of our new books are showcased all this month at the National Writing for Children Center. Please visit the center at www.writingforchildrencenter.com to learn more about them. And, to find out more about ALL of our books, please visit our website at www.LovingHealing.com.

Follow Day 5 of my tour tomorrow at babiestotschildren.com Leave a comment every day of my tour and your name will automatically be entered to win a Gift Box Bundle - filled with books and other goodies - at the end of the month, provided by the National Writing for Children Center.

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20. Catching a bad mood

When you are sensitive, you can feel someone else’s mood a mile away, and it affects you like it would the smell of bad perfume. I learned an important lesson yesterday I wanted to share about setting boundaries and bad moods.

I took a detour yesterday and went to a different post office then my cozy, friendly one. I had to send a package via Customs and waited patiently in line. I had a few more packages fumbling under my arm that had to go to the States.

When I made my way to the Teller I felt it: Bad mood.

She looked at my package and told me curtly that it needed a Customs form. She talked to me like I was a moron and I was purposely insulting her. She then threw the form at me with no directions and brushed me away. Thinking logically, I asked her if I could just pay for the other packages and then fill out the form and she said no twice. That wasn’t how it was done.

The form came in a little booklet with lots of pages and made very little sense when you are in a hurry. I filled out the end form thinking that was the procedure and went back in line to face her again. This time I had the growing sensation of insecurity building up inside of me. “Was I stupid?” I stopped my train of thought quickly and sized up the situation. No, this woman had a “everyone is a moron but me” attitude going that I did not appreciate and it was affecting how I felt. I almost took it on.

Back in front of her, I lost my temper when she chastised me for only filling out the last form, without realizing that it was a duplicate and I should have filled out the first form.

“How the hell would I know that?” I snapped at her. I had been virally affected by her bad mood, and now I was hostile and on the defensive.

I walked away back to the desk to fill out the form “right.” That’s when the aha moment arrived. Eureka! I could walk away. I could take my stuff and go to another post office or even wait for another teller in line. I mumbled this out loud. I didn’t have to put up with her bad treatment or the bad mood she was flinging at others! I also didn’t have to get involved with defending myself or confronting her and showing her what she was doing. That wasn’t my job.

That’s when the Universe rewarded me immediately for my new lesson learned. The woman was so riled she walked into the back and was replaced by another teller who now was about to serve me.

This woman fawned over my cute little drawn mailing labels and stickers and complimented me. We chit-chatted about making art and how much we loved the process, and she told me about her art. When the transaction was completed,  she said “Nice meeting you.”

This was a 180 degree turn around from what I had just experienced! I told the world what I wanted and what I didn’t want. And I threw what wasn’t mine back at the person and basically said, “Here. This isn’t mine, it’s yours.” I won’t put up with bad treatment.

Now I do understand that working at the post office is a very stressful job. My husband worked there for years and told me the counter was the hardest job of all. And I am always trying to understand where the other person is coming from and have compassion. But the teller expected defiance, rudeness, ignorance, and received it, by being rude!  Her foul treatment passed along to me, and if I had owned her mood, caught that contagion, I would surely have passed it to many others throughout the day like a bad cold.

See it, just say No, and Yes to what you do want.

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21. Writing Tips from Kerin Bellak-Adams

Welcome to Day 4 of the 6-day virtual tour for my new book D/HD Success! Solutions for Boosting Self-Esteem The Diary Method Ages 7-17. Today I'd like to share some of my best writing tips.

Interesting ideas stem from experiences one has had with their own children, other people’s kids, or as a teacher, or mental health provider. Keep the material all under one file on the computer and think carefully what each one will be labeled. The heading should have careful thought put into it, and direct all other entries. There is no perfection, just progress. Write from the heart –not just the head. Do some research too in the field. Think about what you’re trying to accomplish and get across that this will make a REAL difference to the reader. It pays to do research to make sure no one else has written on exactly what you have in mind, and in the way that you present the material. Readers want new material and publishers look for why they should select your work rather than someone else’s. Publishing is a very competitive world and now more than ever, so authors have it harder than ever.

Find out more about the book and read some sample pages at www.ReachBeyondADD.com. Also, don't forget to visit the National Writing for Children Center, where my book is showcased all this month. You can listen to my recent interview on Book Bites for Kids there, plus find out what people are saying about my book.

Follow Day 5 of my tour tomorrow at babiestotschildren.com Leave a comment every day of my tour and your name will automatically be entered to win a Gift Box Bundle - filled with books and other goodies - at the end of the month, provided by the National Writing for Children Center.

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22. Classes start on Friday!

A reminder that classes for this session start on Fairy Online School Friday. That’s this Friday! Woo-hoo! Now is the time to reserve your space and sign up. The next session may not be until end of March/April. So, if you are itching to learn some really neat stuff in the warm privacy of your own home on these cold, snowy days, now’s the time. Choose from Talking to Angels, Guides and Dead People (so excited about this one), Care of the Sensitive, Fairy Beginner Fairy Secrets class, Animal Mediumship, Animal Healing, and Animal Communication.

Please note, Fairy Joy class sign ups are ongoing, as are Mentorships, which are arranged.

And of course, Readings are ongoing. New ebook almost ready!

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23. On the Clip Board

There are many familiar faces on the list this week.  Word of mouth and peer recommendations go far in our school, and these are some of our students' favs!

The Name of This Book is Secret, by Psuedonymous Bosch

The Falcon's Malteser, by Anthony Horowitz

Stanford Wong Flunks Big Time, by Lisa Yee

Peter and the Shadow Thieves, by Dave Barry & Ridley Pearson

TMBS and the Prisoner's Dilemma, by Trenton Lee Stewart

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24. New book now available in paper

New! HELP! I’M SENSITIVE ebook now available in paper and via snail mail too. For those who still need something tangible in their hands. Same great tools in another form.

Cute fun size

Buy the paper version: Paper coil-binded and printed version pocketbook (5.5″ x 4.25″) size, with shipping $23.99: Buy here.


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25. North of Beautiful by Justina Henley Chen

What kind of man will create an unbearable family life because of his professional humiliation?

One son leaves to work in China. Another son does not return from college to visit home. They both leave their sister and mother to suffer from the emotional and verbal whippings of the father. They had their share. But Terra carries an extra burden, a large port wine birthmark that covers the side of her face. Another target for needling from her father. Terra's mom takes her to Seattle for yet another attempt to cure the birthmark. On their way home they spin out on ice and rear-end Jacob and his mother's SUV. And here starts amazing friendships that heal birthmarks deeper than the skin. Terra and her mother learn about themselves in...China!

You will not like the dad, but you will cheer for everyone else in this amazing story.

ENDERS' Rating: *****

Justina Headley Chen's Blog

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