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

Posts tagged ‘kidlit’

Countdown Wednesday


Today, Mom and I are counting down about Thanksgiving. No surprise there, I guess – seeing as how it’s Thanksgiving week….

My countdown

3. Leftovers – I never get to eat turkey leftovers. Mom eats dinner at a fancy restaurant and apparently forgets I exist while she’s there… except when she spies on me through my Petzi Treat Cam on her phone. It gives me treats while she’s gone, but no turkey.


Drumstick, please….

2. Special Foods – Holiday time is filled with special foods. Like turkey, stuffing, potatoes, and… acorns. My friend Marg says her donkeys Joe and Smoke eat acorns all the time. I am not allowed. Apparently I am only a “donkey” when I get afraid and can’t move.


1. Gratitude – There is so much gratitude in my heart, I would need 5 kabillion blog posts to express it all. I am grateful for our family, humanfriends, dogfriends, cyberfriends, treats, toys…

too manytoys

…therapywork, naps, cuddles, kisses, and car rides.


And that’s just for starters…

Mom’s countdown

3. Leftovers – When Mom’s list of thirty PiBoIdMo ideas is finished, some will make amazing stories, some will become poems, and some will be stale, dried up leftovers. It happens. Sometimes when Mom takes my picture, she has a few leftovers that don’t exactly make the cut.

Who turned off the lights?

Who turned off the lights?

2. Gratitude – There is so much gratitude in Mom’s heart, she would need 6 kabillion blog posts to express it all. She is grateful for our family, humanfriends, dogfriends, cyberfriends, treats, toys…


…therapywork, naps, cuddles, kisses, car rides and ME!

Cupcake and Me

And that’s just for starters…

1. Butterball – ‘Nuff said.


Inspirational Quote of the Week



Um… No. Not EVERY leaf is a flower. Some are crunchy, brown, dead things that need to be raked up or blown away with noisy machines that I’m pretty sure are trying to kill me.


Some of them, though ARE flowers! They’re blindingly colorful and drift softly down from the trees and glitter and glow right in the middle of all the ugly ones.

leaf face

Autumn leaves are kind of like ideas. Mom is collecting ideas this month and writing them into her phone.

PiBo badge 2015

Some are already crunchy, brown, and dead. Some have mold….


…or holes in them.


Some are all wet.


These will most likely not go any farther than the list.


But every now and then, there are some beautiful, colorful ones floating down and sparkling in the sunshine. Mom needs to jump on those before they get away.


Got ’em!



Finishing and Starting

Mom will be finishing her Picture Book Magic class this week. Next week, she’s starting PiBoIdMo!

PiBo badge 2015

Sheesh! She’s barely finishing one thing and she’s starting another!

I like finishing my dinner…

dinner done

and then starting to beg for other people’s dinner.


And finishing a car ride…

car ride

and starting a street nap before Mom drags me into the house.

street sleeper

In the month of November, people like Mom in the PiBoIdMo challenge have to think of a new idea for a new picture book every day of the month. That’s 30 new ideas in 30 days.


I haven’t had 30 ideas since I was born! Mostly my ideas are all the same. Eat treats,

101 treats

take a nap,


steal food,


take a walk.

reservoir walk

Well, I’m finished with my latest car trip and ready to start Read to a Pet Night at the library . Let’s do this!

do it

How It Starts

ready set go

Starting is always an exciting adventure.

Here I am starting to head into the veteran’s home to do my therapy work.

This is as close as I'm getting to that guy...

This is as close as I’m getting to that guy. …Pretty sure he’s trying to kill me.

And starting off for a road trip to the park.

road trip

Trees get started from these. Mom says the word, “Don’t eat the acorns!”

acorn eater

Fall colors are finally starting in my neighborhood.

fall tree

And at the park…

park leaves

Mom started a new story last week. She is working on it with her online writing class – Making Picture Book Magic.

pb magic

She had to think up a bunch of different ways the story could start, and then pick the one she liked best.

once upon

Probably should keep trying…

She had to do a few more things before she started writing, but then she started. She wrote and wrote and wrote and wrote. Then she said, “I have written over 500 words and I’m nowhere near finished.” and “I feel like I’m drowning.” and “Why would you steal blueberries? You don’t even LIKE blueberries!”

Who? Me?

Who? Me?

After Mom was finished drowning and finished cleaning up the berries that I chewed and spit out, she started her story all over again. So, that’s how it starts. …and starts again…

park trees



Work in Progress

Around my neighborhood, there are a few works in progress. This vine is definitely a work in progress – trying to grow something. Mom says, “Maybe pumpkins.” I hope not. *shiver* Either way, the flowers are there, but it looks like it needs another year (or ten) before anything will pop out to scare the daylights out of me.


This pile of …. I don’t know what – is another work in progress. Sometimes it seems like road salt, but sometimes, it looks like mulch. I guess it’ll make up its mind eventually.


When Mom was a teacher, she used to stamp her kids’ first drafts with a rubber stamp that read, “Under Construction.”

under construction

The kids thought it was fun. Plus that stamp told them to work on revising and proofreading their stories for a little while longer so they would be ready to hang on the bulletin board.

This month, Mom is studying in Susanna Hill’s Making Picture Book Magic class.

pb magic

Her new story is a work in progress and is under construction in a big way. Every morning, Susanna teaches Mom what to do next in order to have a finished story by the end of the month. Mom does each step and then posts it to their Facebook page so her classmates can see it and talk about it with her. She thinks it’s fun to have a work in progress that moves closer to completion every day.

Something else is a work in progress at our house. A whole box of orange snowball cakes.


Mom is trying hard to eat them all herself. I offered to help, but she said, “No thanks.” and “Dogs can’t eat chocolate.”


and “Your behavior is DEFINITELY under construction.”



Inspirational Quote of the Week

Continuous effort – not strength or intelligence – is the key to unlocking our potential.

Winston Churchill

Mom shows continuous effort in her writing. I guess writing for a little while each day is continuous effort…


Just when she thinks she’s getting better, somebody tells her the word, “Too easy.” and “Not enough conflict.” and “The solution came too fast.” She’s using her continuous effort to listen and change the way her stories end. And to unlock her potential. Life needs to be tougher for Mom’s characters.

Not so with me. Life is tough enough for this doggie! Exhibit A – My PupJoy subscription box came the other day. Right on my birthday!

birthday box

It was filled with toys, treats, and surprises. I looked closely…


and I sniffed and sniffed,


but the box remained closed up tight.


When Mom saw my helpless-hopeless-hapless-face, she got the box open and gave me the goodies. That guy, Winston has the right idea. I didn’t need any strength or intelligence at all to get that done.


Martian toy!

I’m still learning to be well-behaved – with continuous effort. Mom says I am not as “responsive” in my new harness as I am with my Martingale collar.


I think responsive is overrated. Look how cute I look!

Adorable? Yup.

Adorable? Yup.

No strength or intelligence needed here.

Watch me walk nicely, like a good girl, right next to Mom. Continuous effort…. Potential unlocked!

Countdown Wednesday


It’s back to school time around here. For 52 years of her life, Mom went back to school in September – sometimes as a student and sometimes as a teacher. Today we’re counting down about back to school.

back to school

My Back to School Countdown

3. Sleep – A good night’s sleep will make a better learner.

night night

So does a good morning’s sleep and a good afternoon’s sleep

raccoon nap

and a good floor sleep and a good street sleep.

street nap 92

I must be the best learner in the world!

2. Friends – When school starts I get to see lots of friends at the library. I am well-behaved and don’t knock over any chairs or bump any tables. I don’t lick the books or the kids’ shoes while they’re reading to me. …Actually I do all of those things, but just a little bit.

iselin library

1. School Visits – Once in while, one of Mom’s teacher friends tells her to bring me to school to play with the kids for a while. That is my dream come true.


Mom’s Back to School Countdown

3. School Visits – Mom loves visiting kids at school to show her PowerPoint, talk about being an author, and read her books to them. She says it’s the best part of being an author. Bar none.


2. Friends – Now that she’s not a teacher anymore, Mom and a few of her retired teacher friends go out to breakfast on the first day of school and enjoy drinking lots of coffee and talking instead of working.


1. Fear – Mom had a raging case of school phobia when she was in kindergarten. She cried and begged her mother every single day to let her stay home – not for the first few days, but EVERY SINGLE DAY from the first day of school in September till the last day of school in June. That might explain why she writes about being afraid so often. She has a million stories about fear in her computer. It’s apparently her favorite topic.

Luckily, I am much more courageous than she was….

Uh-oh! Pumpkin demons...

Uh-oh! Pumpkin demons… Help me.


GAH! It’s the deadly balloon of doom. *gulp*



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