My Books

Monday, November 24, 2008


Hi all. I am very busy sketching for my next picture book (the first one written by yours truly!) and still trying to salvage a few relaxing days off for the holiday. But I just wanted to do a quick post about this great online magazine called Small, that as they describe it, "is a magazine of creative work on a small scale and for the small sized."

I actually stumbled across the magazine in this weheartbooks blog entry. Apparently, there is a 2-spread article about the we heart books blog and online store in the new issue winter issue of Small...and after taking a closer look at the article, I realized Haiku Baby is one of the 5 books reviewed (see the second spread). The article also touches on how authors and illustrators are embracing the world of the blog as a way of sharing their art.

So, that was pretty fun to discover an inspiring and new-to-me children's trend magazine and well as find my book in it! And I am so thankful for these small successes and discoveries that remind me why I do what I do. Now I gotta go do what I do and sketch away!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

have you ever...?

Saw this on another artist's blog:
Just cut and paste and bold the things you have done...

Have you ever...?
1. Started your own blog
2. Slept under the stars
3. Played in a band
4. Visited Hawaii
5. Watched a meteor shower
6. Given more than you can afford to charity
7. Been to Disneyland
8. Climbed a mountain
9. Held a praying mantis
10. Sang a solo
11. Bungee jumped
12. Visited Paris
13. Watched a lightning storm at sea
14. Taught yourself an art from scratch
15. Adopted a child
16. Had food poisoning
17. Walked to the top of the Statue of Liberty
18. Grown your own vegetables
19. Seen the Mona Lisa in France
20. Slept on an overnight train
21. Had a pillow fight
22. Hitch hiked
23. Taken a sick day when you’re not ill
24. Built a snow fort
25. Held a lamb
26. Gone skinny dipping
27. Run a Marathon
28. Ridden in a gondola in Venice
29. Seen a total eclipse
30. Watched a sunrise or sunset
31. Hit a home run
32. Been on a cruise
33. Seen Niagara Falls in person
34. Visited the birthplace of your ancestors
35. Seen an Amish community.
36. Taught yourself a new language
37. Had enough money to be truly satisfied
38. Seen the Leaning Tower of Pisa in person
39. Gone rock climbing
40. Seen Michelangelos David
41. Sung karoke
42. Seen Old Faithful geyser erupt
43. Bought a stranger a meal at a restaurant
44. Visited Africa
45. Walked on a beach by moonlight
46. Been transported in an ambulance
47. Had your portrait painted
48. Gone deep sea fishing
49. Seen the Sistine Chapel in person
50. Been to the top of the Eiffel Tower in Paris
51. Gone scuba diving or snorkeling
52. Kissed in the rain
53. Played in the mud
54. Gone to a drive-in theater
55. Been in a movie
56. Visited the Great Wall of China
57. Started a business
58. Taken a martial arts class
59. Visited Russia
60. Served at a soup kitchen
61. Sold Girl Scout cookies
62. Gone whale watching
63. Got flowers for no reason
64. Donated blood, platelets or plasma
65. Gone sky diving
66. Visited a Nazi Concentration Camp
67. Bounced a check
68. Flown in a helicopter
69. Saved a favorite childhood toy
70. Visited the Lincoln Memorial
71. Eaten Caviar
72. Pieced a quilt
73. Stood in Times Square
74. Toured the Everglades
75. Been fired from a job
76. Seen the Changing of the Guards in London
77. Broken a bone
78. Been on a speeding motorcycle
79. Seen the Grand Canyon in person
80. Published a book
81. Visited the Vatican
82. Bought a brand new car
83. Walked in Jerusalem
84. Had your picture in the newspaper
85. Read the entire Bible
86. Visited the White House
87. Killed and prepared an animal for eating
88. Had chickenpox
89. Saved someone’s life
90. Sat on a jury
91. Met someone famous
92. Joined a book club
93. Lost a loved one
94. Had a baby
95. Seen the Alamo in person
96. Swam in the Great Salt Lake
97. Been involved in a lawsuit
98. Owned a cell phone
99. Been stung by a bee
100. Read an entire book in one day

I might also add:
•Taught yourself how to play an instrument
•Had a penpal you never met in person
•Seen a sea turtle
•Jumped off of a cliff into the sea
•Seen a tornado
•Been in an earthquake
•Seen a coyote in your backyard
•worked as a waitress/waiter
•taken your own bag(s) to the grocery store
•been ice skating on a pond
•studied abroad

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

we heart books

Have you heard of It's a lovely little blog written by two moms in Australia that are super-passionate about kids' books. They set the site up to help people choose books for kids.

Anyway, I discovered their blog about a month ago–well, really, they discovered me. Lou (one of the moms) contacted me about featuring Haiku Baby in a new boutique bookstore that she and her blog partner were launching online. So, I just checked their blog yesterday, and their new store is now up and running–and lookie what's on their first homepage! So sweet of them to put my book front and center:)

And how's this for serendipity (one of my favorite words, by the way)? I was about to blog about this great children's book called Le Tour du Monde de Mouk by Marc Boutavant, who's been one of my most favorite illustrators for a few years now. His work kind of reminds me of a modern-day Richard Scarry. Well, I'd desperately wanted this book for a while, but couldn't track it down in the States. So, Jeff secretly found it online in Canada and gave it to me for my birthday in September. It's the coolest book, absolutely jam-packed with cute animal eye candy and even has a big page of vinyl cling stickers in the back. I LOVE it! Well, turns out that on the current homepage for the store, Haiku Baby is right next to the English version of this book, Around the World with Mouk. It's so funny that my little book has traveled around the world to Australia, and has found a spot right next to another book I'd been searching for. And such an honor to be right next to Marc Boutavant. I heart serendipity.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

fall fun

I'm loving fall today. I walked to work, first stopping to enjoy the crimson-painted leaves on our Japanese maple out front. On my walk, I listened to children laugh as I passed the school, crunched on leaves covering sidewalks, looked up at berries, bright against the clear blue sky. It's one of those days you cherish, knowing that it could be the last one. So, after this post, I am headed home to rake some leaves and soak up the last of fall.

Another reason I love fall...Halloween! My mom always made my Halloween costumes. Sometimes she had to get really creative when there wasn't a pattern to be found for what I was asking for. Like one year when I wanted to be "a lady riding an ostrich" (we saw it at the circus that year). I will never believe that Halloween fun is only meant for kids and has to stop when you grow up. I think my husband now really gets what Halloween means to me. Last week, he said, "Betsy, I've realized that Halloween is to you what St. Patrick's Day is to me."(he's Irish) And I said, "Exactly!"

Here is my niece Ava the Bumblebee at a Halloween party, where she is already demonstrating her creative talent. Just look at how she holds the paintbrush, without instruction!

And lastly, a recap of the Buckeye Book Fair last weekend. It went great! I had lots of fun meeting parents, grandparents, kids, teachers, librarians, authors and illustrators. It's nice to get out of my bubble and get some firsthand feedback from the people that are really buying the books. I was so busy signing and talking that the day flew by, and before I knew it, I was all sold out of both books, two hours early! So, look for me there next year!

at my table

The buttons were "prickly", so I decide to let people "fish" for them with a homemade rod made from a chopstick, string and magnet.