Monday, November 29, 2010

A top ten list


My extended family is spread far and wide.

Now that all of the nieces and nephews are grown, it's harder to travel and gather us all together.

So for the last few years, the three of us have been having a wonderful Thanksgiving on Cape Cod.

You can't beat the view from your table:

Or the amazing cookie village:

My son and I:

THIS is my favorite part. The raw bar!

Who needs turkey and stuffing?
I mean, unlimited oysters? Lobster tails? Shrimp?

Seriously. All I eat is the stuff from the raw bar.

And, of course, a little dessert.

Friday, November 26, 2010

Turkey soup, anyone?

My dog, Ruby, has a history of getting out of the yard and returning with another dog's toy.

She has done it THREE times now!

But today was the ultimate theft.

She got out of the yard.

We looked and looked....

....and called and called.

My husband and I both drove around the neighborhood searching.

Just when I was starting to worry....

She came home with a turkey carcass!!!!

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

NCTE Orlando Part 2

The next morning, I FINALLY got to meet my dear friend, Kirby Larson.

Kirby and I have been friends for years now but have never met in person!
I could have spent all day talking to her.
We have decided that we MUST figure out something we can do together in the future.

Here she is wearing her fabulous 40's hat in honor of her Dear America book, The Fences Between Us.

Kirby Larson (left) and me

So, of course, I had to try on her fabulous hat:

Here is Kirby in her 40's dress:

While we were chatting, my pal Karen Terlecky came by and joined in the fun. (Doesn't Kirby look diabolical here?

Next I headed over to the Macmillan booth for my signing.

Me and Jack Gantos

My last event was a "speed booktalking" session for the 2010 Notable Children's Books (which included The Small Adventure of Popeye and Elvis)

And then....home....with two empty seats beside me!

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

NCTE Orlando Part 1

Arrived in sunny Orlando for the NCTE annual conference, checked into hotel and was greeted by the Mickey Mouse (towels) on my bed:

Can you find Mickey Mouse on the shower curtain?

Then I made a quick sweep of the exhibit area and ran into some familiar faces:

Me and Little Brown editor, Alvina Ling

Me, Peepy, and author Lisa Yee

Me and Peepy

Me and Dial/Penguin editor, Kathy Dawson

That night, I attended a wonderful Macmillan-hosted dinner with teachers and other children's literature folks.

Me and Elaine Magliaro.
(Elaine and I had been on the same 2-hour delayed flight from Boston)

Me and my pal, teacher, blogger Karen Terlecky from Dublin, Ohio

Denise Johnson, professor of children's literature; College of William and Mary (left) me and Virginia teacher Amy Moser

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Things I Love Thursday

When you've been making blog posts nearly every day for three years, after a while, you kinda run out of ideas.

So I decided on a new feature to help pad the week. Heh.

Things I Love Thursdays.

Here's the first one:

My beloved GPS. I would be lost without it. (haha)

I have the WORST sense of direction.

I love you, little GPS.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I love kids

From a fan:

I really like the book How to Steal a Dog. I think we have a lot in common. Do you like horses and rodeos? Yes, I know I'm changing the subject.

Monday, November 15, 2010

NCTE Conference 2010

I'll be at the NCTE conference in Orlando this Saturday and Sunday.

I'll be signing at the Macmillan Booth #912 on Sunday from 11-12.

Then I'll be participating in the Notable Children's Books in the Language Arts program from 1-2:45 in Coronado Ballroom H.

Come by and say hello!

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Such a crafty gal

My BFF, Gucci, is a crafty kinda gal. She can make anything out of anything.

Remember this?

You name it, she can make something totally cool with it.

So, of course, when she wanted to take the clam shells home after dinner at my house one night, I had to tease her about what in the world she was going to make with them.

A toilet seat cover? A pencil holder? A night light?

Maybe another beautiful candle holder like the one she made this summer (with oyster shells and a piece of snow fencing from the beach)?

Here's what she made!
For my birthday...
An amazing shell wreath with all of my books on it.
How cool is that?

It was in a box with her photo in the middle, which was an LOL moment. (And she actually had a round box that she saved from who-knows-where.)

It came with this note from a one-legged pigeon (the "star" of my work-in-progress):

Thanks, friend!
I'm so lucky.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Children's Authors/Illustrators Cookbook

Need a Christmas gift for a children's book lover? Look no further.

A cookbook with recipes and personal stories contributed by children's book author and illustrators!

This is a wonderful project to benefit children recovering from brain surgery.

A flyer about the cookbook.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Change of scenery

I've said goodbye to my summer office:

And then, goodbye to my fall office:

And, now, hello to my winter office:

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Product endorsement

I'm putting in another plug for Apica notebooks.

They are the best!

The paper is sooo smooth.

If you're old like me and Kirby Larson and have arthritis in your thumb, it really makes a difference.

Sad, but true.

I only use the 7 x 10 size, which is their "model" number CD15.

They come in lots of lovely colors.

You can get them at some stationary and book stores and lots of places online.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Oh, the memories

Some of my fondest memories of my son as a toddler are the times we spent reading together.

Every mom knows about those books you read over and over and over....until you and your child know every word and every picture.

I was thinking recently about some of those books.

Here are some I remember:

This one was fun to learn colors:

We could recite this one:

Oh, how we loved to look for that flea in The Napping House:

Another one where we never got tired of the pictures:

A friend of mine gave me this one as a hand-me-down from her children. She had a naughty son who wrote naughty words inside and I had to erase them. haha

And, of course, we read this one 4,573,788 times:

Amazing how interesting it was to just look at pictures of words:

"Hello, little mouse....?"
I knew this one by heart!

I think I liked this one more than my son. We read all the Alfie books because I loved the art so much. I loved how the house was always messy.