Living with a children's author isn't as easy as it looks!

Posts tagged ‘reading’

Inspirational Quote of the Week

Creativity doesn’t wait for that perfect moment. It fashions its own perfect moments out of ordinary ones.

-Bruce Garrabrandt-

Moments matter – Every single one of them. I try to use each one wisely.

Climbing.

climb

Kissing.

kissing vic

Exploring.

explore

Eating.

cupcakeeating

Playing.

teddybear playing

And helping.

photo 2

This past weekend we lost 60 moments of sleep for daylight savings. Well, the humans did. I got those moments back in spades 60 times over.

sleeping

Mom uses one hour of moments each day for work. And by work I mean she sits there and types on the computer and talks out loud to herself. Sometimes the Creativity visits her during that hour. I love visitors. I’m not sure I’ve ever met the Creativity Visitor, though. Maybe tomorrow…..

waiting

If the Creativity doesn’t visit at that exact work time, Mom still works. Each month, she makes a new story and fixes up an old story (or two or three) for her 12×12 Challenge. She also reads books about writing books, and reads books like the books she writes. Wait. What?

books1

Writing time is not for blogs, not for Facebook, not for email, not for Words With Friends, and not even for TV.

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It’s just working on stories in one way or another – writing them, reading them, fixing them, thinking about them, submitting them to agents and publishers, and giving me cuddles and treats…. (See what I did there?) If the Creativity doesn’t come – Oh well. Maybe tomorrow…..

We’ll be ready.

waiting2

Best Doctor Ever

photo 1

Today is Dr. Seuss’s birthday. He would’ve been 109 years old. He is the Best Doctor Ever on account of no needles, no looking into ears with a flashlight, no sticks stuck into forbidden places, and no touching of my bits and pieces.

Waiting for the doctor...

Waiting for the Doctor. Hoping for the Best.

Mom also loves Dr. Seuss for a million other reasons – his wild imagination, his silly rhyming, his crazy stories, and the fact that his first book was rejected 27 times before anybody said they liked it. Misery loves company.

rejected

Mom’s #1 favorite Dr. Seuss book is The 500 Hats of Bartholomew Cubbins from 1938.

500 hats

Normally, Mom and I steer clear of anything that smacks of numbers, but counting those hats is so much fun and so suspenseful that we can’t resist it. Also, a hundred years ago, Mom’s 5th grade teacher, Mrs. Nelson read that story to her class and Mom and her friends giggled and counted and were afraid for poor little Bartholomew not being able to take his hat off for the king.

500 hats2

As of Dr. Seuss’s birthday, Mom is up to date on her 12×12 Challenge. She has written 2 new stories in the past 2 months. Now it’s a new month and time to start a new story.

photo22

In which direction should she go?

Direction? Up, of course.

King of the Hill of Filth

King of the Hill of Filth

What will be original?

Original? It doesn’t get any more original than an old dog learning a new trick.

333

Who will step out of her list of character ideas?

Character? This one.

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Or this one.

4

Or this one.

devil

How will she make the story sparkle?

Sparkle? With a tiara, of course.

Am I sparkling, yet?

Am I sparkling, yet?

Finished

photo 1

Dinner is finished. I can tell by my empty dish.

photo 2

The Nutcracker Ballet is finished. I can tell by the SugarPlum Fairy dancing…

photo 3

…and Clara waking up.

photo 5

You mean we can’t play King of the Hill??

The snow is finished. I can tell by this little pile of black mush which is called Get-Away-From-It-It’s-Filthy.

bn

Mom is finished with her Goodreads Reading Challenge. She read 200 books this year, just like she planned.

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She is finished with PiBoIdMo, too. She made a list of 30+ ideas, just like she planned.

12-x-12-new-badge2

Now, 2013 is about finished, but Mom isn’t ready. She has one more thing to finish. It’s her second year of The12x12 Challenge. That means she planned to write 12 picture book manuscripts in 12 months. But she’s only got eleven-and-a-half stories finished. She needs to buckle down and get to the end of her 12th story before the end of the year.

Mom says, “It doesn’t count if it’s inside my head.” and “This is a tough time of year to catch up.” and “Dinner is finished. Get over it. You will eat again tomorrow.”

photo 6

Countdown Wednesday

Today, we’re counting down my latest awards.

dragon loyalty award

My friends at Dog Daz Zoo sent me the Dragon’s Loyalty Award. I won it once before right here.  Thanks, girls!

versatile-blogger-award-from-radmaverix-11-3-13

Nikitaland sent me the Versa-tail Blogger Award or something like that. Yay! Thanks. I have never had that one before. I think it means my tail is pretty, and not a freaky monkey-tail, like Mom says.

Whether you have a tail or not, feel free to add some bling to your blog and share either one of my awards.

Both awards want me to tell seven things about myself. I’m not much with the math, but I’ll try, and maybe I’ll even let Mom tell one or two things about herself, too.

Seven Things

1. I love sleeping under the covers on Mom’s bed.

cyclops

2. My birthday was in September. I’m seven.

bday

3. Sometimes, I try to hatch my toys like eggs.

hatching

4. When my feet touch sand, I run in circles like I am a deranged lunatic.

sand

5. One day, while Mom was driving to the VA, there was a devil in her rearview mirror.

devil mirror

6. I like lollipops.

lollipop

7. Mom read a book that had a dog named Cupcake in it. It wasn’t me.

daily coyote

92. Mom is falling behind in her reading challenge. She planned to read 200 picture books this year. She is not on target, but plans to catch up. We’ll see.

46. Speaking of falling behind, she also missed the month of June in the 12×12 challenge, so she’s hoping to do her June manuscript in December. We’ll see.

21. Mom promised to take me to the park today. I’m really tired from working at Read to a Pet Night at the library last night.

read to a pet

Being a good girl, listening to a story…

Plus it’s really cold outside. I’m not sure I want to go to the park. ….We’ll see….

cuddly jeans

Reading

Mom reads a lot. Mostly on her Kindle,

kindle head

…but sometimes she reads big shopping bags full of kiddie books from the public library.

library books

I don’t like when she reads, because it means she will pretty much ignore me the whole time.

Hello? Does anybody see me?

Hello? Does anybody see me?

This is unacceptable. And boring!

blanket nap

Even worse, sometimes she goes to Barnes and Noble and reads books in the cafe,

bn

while I watch out the window waiting….

screen and flower

She keeps making lists of books she wants to read. She reads grown up books, young adult, easy reader, middle grade, and lots and lots of picture books. One of her lists says:

Cutting for Stone

Night Circus

Biting the Moon

The Silver Star

The View from Saturday

Umbrella Summer

Eggs

Keeper

War and Watermelon

Zero Tolerance

The Giver

Rules of Summer

Charlie Bumpers Versus the Teacher of the Year

Each Kindness

Yikes! That’s a lot of time spent ignoring me!

....Hello...?

….Hello…?

Mom says, “It’s my job to read.” and “How can I call myself an author if I don’t read?” and “Please don’t drool on the books!”

head in bag

I do not know how to read. Mom says that’s pretty clear….

no parking

Countdown Wednesday

Today, we’re counting down some favorites. My friend, Little Binky gave me the idea when we were both nominated for the Favorite Things Award. Thanks, Little B. and Granny!

favourite-things-award

For this award, all we have to do is tell 6 of our favorite things, and then pass the award on. Feel free to take the badge and tell 6 of your favorite things if you haven’t already done that.

My Favorite Things

6. Bacon treats. Or chicken. Or liver. Or beef. Or cheese…..

bacon treats

5. Stuffed toys. I don’t always tear them up. Only sometimes….

head rip

4. The park. I love swinging, walking, sitting, sniffing, eating things from the ground when Mom isn’t looking, and people watching – especially little-kid-people.

swing

3. The car. Every road trip is a good road trip.

car

2. Street naps. The hotter the better.

street4

1. Sun puddles. Aaahhhh…..

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Mom’s Favorite Books to Read Aloud When She Was a Teacher

6. The Trumpet of the Swan

5. Tales of a Fourth Grade Nothing

4. All About Sam

3. All the Money in the World

2. Junie B. Jones and the Yucky Blucky Fruitcake

1. The Chocolate Touch

glasses

Countdown Wednesday

123Today, Mom and I are counting down about a author visits. She’s going to visit a school on Friday, so she can talk about being a writer, and read her book to the kids there.

Why I don’t like author visits.

3. Staying by myself. Mom will go away in the car for a long time. That means, no walking at the park, no jumping through my hula hoop, no treats in my IQ puzzles, and no bowling practice. Boring.

bowling

2. Bags. Mom will pack up tons of things to show the kids, and she will also put her laptop and LCD projector into bags. Bags are usually a LOT of fun. My head fits in there perfectly, and sometimes bags have treats in them. Or bacon. Or cake.

 bag1

But school visit bags are off limits. Mom says the word, “Get your bony little head out of there.” No fun.

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1. Kids. Mom will talk to tons and tons of kids at her school visit. I love kids. And they love me. Whenever kids see me, they pet me and hug me and say how cute I am. Plus, kids taste delicious, like candy. And sweat. And dirt. Yum.

feet

 

What Mom likes about author visits.

3. Driving. Taking a road trip is always fun. Of course it would be more fun if I went along, but….

car

2. Reading. Mom loves reading stories. Story time was her favorite time of the day when she was a little girl at school, and it was her favorite time of the day when she was a teacher. Of course, I also love story time, but….

books

1. Kids. Mom has talked to hundreds and hundreds of kids in her careers as a teacher and an author. Thousands, maybe. She predicts that the kids at this school will ask her some of the same things kids at other schools have asked, “Are you rich?” and “Did you draw the pictures?” and “One time my dad got his finger stuck in the car door…” which is not a question, but….

reading

 

Five Word Friday

Today I will ask 5 questions that have had me thinking lately.

1. Why is coffee so magical?

coffee

I think coffee makes people smart. Whenever Mom sits down to write, she always puts a cup of coffee next to the computer. I think it magically helps her brain.

2. Is a laundry basket a bed?

basket

Bed is a good place to read books. Mom reads books a lot. A laundry basket is a good place to sleep. At least until Mom says, “OUT!”

3. Can a light chase away monsters in the dark?

light

When Mom writes about monsters, dragons, dinosaurs, or cats, I am afraid. I am also afraid of the dark. And balloons. And the golf cart. And pumpkins. And street signs. And soccer players. And….

4. Is a dog head good medicine for a sore knee?

knee

This is how I help Mom when her knee hurts. I help her with her writing, too, mostly by staring at her when she’s trying to work.

5. If a chair is not pushed all the way under the table, is it OK to climb up and eat cake out of the box? I love cake.cake2

Speaking of cake and coffee… Thanks to our friends at DogDaz for inviting us to coffee and our friends at Bumpy Road to Bubba and Angels Whisper for including us in their coffee party.  Definitely take a visit to their blogs, if you haven’t already. Also, we will include ALL our blog buddies in our coffee party, so feel free to take the badge and answer the questions if you’d like to join us.

coffe-date-phot

1) How many cups of coffee per day? Mom has 2 or 3. I have as many slurps as I can beg, borrow, or steal.

2) What is your favorite caffeine delivery system? Mom likes her Keurig. I like when she leaves her cup on the table and doesn’t push in her chair.

3) What was your best cup of coffee?  They are all perfect.

4) What was your worst cup of coffee? No such thing. Even the stale, strong coffee in the teacher’s lounge at Mom’s old school, was delicious to her.

5) What does your favorite mug say? Mom’s favorite has a c-c-c-cat on it.

6) How do you take your coffee? Cream and sugar – very light and very sweet, just like me!

7) When was your first cup? Mom drank coffee flavored milk when she was little. My first taste was the morning after Mom found me at the rescue event.

8) Have you ever gone on a coffee tea date? We’re on one right now!

cat mug

Mmmmm….

Inspirational Quote of the Week

“If you want to be a writer, you must do two things above all others: read a lot and write a lot.”
~Stephen King~ 

I’m pretty sure this guy Stephen King knows a thing or two about writing. Mom believes him and takes his advice. She also forgives him for Cujo.  I am not sure I do, though. *shiver*

cujo

Mom reads a lot and writes a lot every day. Well, maybe not a LOT…. But some every day. Well, maybe not EVERY day, but most days.

Mom reads children’s books, young adult books, grown-up books, blogs, magazines, websites, email, reviews, and books about being a writer. She takes some time to play bowling with me, take me for walks around the neighborhood, throw my toys, clean up piles and piles of dog hair from around the house, and dress me up.

tutu

She also works on new stories, old stories, stories about dogs, kids,and animals, stories from her November idea list, and poems. She takes some time out to cuddle with me, brush my teeth, give me treats, teach me tricks, and take me to Petco to have my nails cut.

petco

It’s times like this that I wish she’d concentrate on her work…..

Finished

gingerbread1

Don’ t these gingerbread men look yummy?  I waited nicely with them, so Mom could take my picture.  I expected she’d toss a nice big one to me after the photo shoot.  But she didn’t.  She ate a couple of them herself and gave me one little gingerbread head.  I ate it so fast, I barely tasted it.  I checked the floor to see if it fell. 

floor

It didn’t.

Mom and her friends ate gingerbread men day after day, and all I ever got was an occasional leg or arm, except in my dreams when I got to eat tons of them.

sleeping2

And now they’re FINISHED.  I’m sure more Christmas cookies are around here someplace, but the gingerbread men are finished. 

Besides the gingerbread, Mom also finished her Goodreads Challenge.  In January, she challenged herself to read 212 picture books in 2012.  She actually read and rated 214.  Some of her favorites were: Betty Bunny Loves Chocolate Cake, I am the Dog, Kindergarten Rocks, Dinosaur vs Santa, Playing War, and Stuck.  She liked a whole bunch more, too.  They made her say, “Awesome!” and “Hilarious!” and “Why can’t I write like this?”

betty bunnydinosaur vs santai am the dogplaying warstuckkindergarten rocks

Some of the books she read made her say, “Wait. What?” and “THIS is published?” and “I want that ten minutes of my life back!”

I want the gingerbread men back.

plate

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