More on Fernwood’s Art Stroll

It was an honour to be a guest at the Fernwood Art Stroll where artist, Paula Nasmith, featured her work.  Since many of you are not able to get to Victoria, B.C., I thought you’d like a little peek at our day.

Each year, artists in Victoria’s Fernwood community invite the public into their homes for a viewing of their artwork.  Paula and I also featured our book, Katie Shaeffer Pancake Maker!


Plenty of people came through to view Paula’s gallery of work and there was no shortage of compliments on her paintings which are done with acrylics or water colours.

In between visitors, we chatted about future picture book projects!  We have a few ideas for supporting diversity in the next couple of books and hope that we can make those come to fruition.

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Paula does not sell her original artwork but she does offer framed prints and art cards for very reasonable prices.  She will be at the Moss Street Paint-In on July 15th with her artwork and our picture book.  I am hoping to free myself up to spend a little time on Moss Street too.  We shall see…

Thanks, Paula, for inviting me to join you at the Art Stroll.  It was a pleasure!






Have you heard of Storywalk®?  This is an opportunity for children and adults to read a story together entering an imaginary world while walking along a pathway or trail.  The pages of the picture book are made into laminated signs that are hung in trees or attached to signposts.  In our town, on Vancouver Island, B.C. we can borrow these from the public library but it would also be possible to make your own.  The cost of colour photocopying and laminating all those pages gets expensive so borrowing them is much more do-able plus there are copyright issues.  The other alternative would be to buy two books and take them apart to make the posters.

Velcro and grommets provide two options for posting.

I was so excited to borrow my first Storywalk® last week!  I got the story Lost and Found by Oliver Jeffers which is such a cute story and perfect as it is about a journey. There were 31 signs to hang up for our walk.  So many signs that I couldn’t fit them all on our preschool property so I had them going down the street for about half a block and then on the property of our local library.


We took our preschool class in small groups to really enjoy the walk.  I thought about 3-4 children was ideal for a group size.

And, as expected, it was a wonderful experience.  We journeyed with penguin and the boy as we read each page of the book.

Sometimes truth is stranger than fiction because at the end of the morning when I went to collect the signs, there were 7 missing!  Now I had tied them securely in place and it was not a windy day so although I’m not certain, someone seemed to have taken them away as they were nowhere to be found!  Have you caught the irony yet?  The story “Lost and Found” is now lost.  Will it be found?  I do not know yet.  Each sign has a label on the back of the library it came from so perhaps if it is someone kind who removed/found the signs, they that person will return them.

As I drove to the library to return the Storywalk®, I wasn’t sure what the response would be.  I was pretty sure I would be charged for the missing pages but in another odd turn of events, the library had no record of me ever checking out the story in the first place. The Storywalk® Lost and Found was labelled as “missing”.  I found this very odd as I was even given a printout with the return date.  So it seems perhaps I won’t be charged?

I thought the library would never let me have another one but I did have another on hold and they agreed to let me take it.  Here it is!Unknown-1

I guess this time I better hold on to my teddy bear; and all other teddy bears in the vicinity!  Believe me, I will be keeping a close eye on those signs this time!

“You have to get lost before you can be found.” -Jeff Rasley

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The Person You Want to Be

I truly believe that every day is a new opportunity to be the person you want to be.  Whatever you did yesterday doesn’t matter.  What you do in this moment…that’s what really counts.

The daily prompt, radiate reminds me of this song by Shawn Mullins called Shimmer.  Have you heard it?  Here’s a short excerpt from the song.

Cause I
Want to shimmer
I want to shine
I want to radiate
I want to live
I want to love
I want to try and learn how not to hate
Try not to hate


Children have a way of helping you be the best you can be.  They are such great imitators and there are times when you do things you aren’t proud of and they copy. These are the times that remind you to be better.  This is why we all need a child in our lives... to remind us to shimmer. Every day.




Vote on My Next Picture Book!

Let’s have some fun and choosing which books to self-publish/send out on submission next…

Here’s a synopsis of five different manuscripts I’m currently working on. I’d like to get your impression.  In the comments, let me know which story you’d most like to see made into a picture book!

1. Kelsey Meets the Monsters

Kelsey must face her greatest fear when her little brother is kidnapped by monsters.  Will Kelsey be able to overcome her fear and save Thomas?

2.  Dinosaurs by Design

Finlayson’s autism means he is just as passionate about loving dinosaurs as he is about hating the beach. One day there is no babysitter and no choice… Finlayson must go to his most feared and hated place… the BEACH!


3. Allison’s Tree

Allison’s best friend is not a girl or a boy; her best friend is a tree.  In this gentle ode to trees, find out why Allison loves her best friend and what Douglas the fir tree can teach her about true friendship.

4. Honey Cakes for Oscar

Find out what happens when Oscar, a very hungry bunny, must reconcile his fear of bees with his love for honey.

5. Finn and Katrina’s Ferry Fairy Excellent Adventure

Journey with Finn and Katrina as they sort out how to keep their new friendship alive after a misunderstanding about what brought them together in the first place.

Which story gets your vote? Why?  I’m excited to hear your responses. Please share!