Monday, December 21, 2015

Happy Winter Solstice

Happy Winter Solstice

Wishing you all the best of the Season

And warmest of wishes for the New Year

See you in 2016

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

A Children's Tale of the Christmas Shepherds

Have you ever wondered about the shepherds in the story of Christmas? And what might've happened the night of Christmas when the angel came and spoke to the shepherds and told of a Savior's birth?

Cheryl C. Malandrinos must've have wondered because she has written a whimsical story from the point of a view of the youngest of shepherds, a boy, only five-years-old.

With large and colorful illustrations by Eugene Ruble, readers follow Obed as he tends to his first flock of sheep in the hills outside Bethlehem. When the angel appears and declares
"Do not be afraid. I bring you good news of great joy that will be for all people,"
the men, including Obed's father, know what they must do. But Obed is reluctant to follow and doesn't want to leave his sheep. He worries of howling wolves and rocks that may trap his sheep and thieves. But it's not in Bethlehem where Obed becomes aware that this is indeed a night of miracles, it's when he returns to his sheep and finds them unharmed, content, and grazing peacefully.

Little Shepherd is a wonderful book for parents, grandparents, Sunday school teachers to read during the Christmas holidays to children of all ages. Available here

Cheryl C. Malandrinos is a freelance writer, children’s author, and editor. A 2005 graduate of Long Ridge Writers Group, Cheryl began her career focusing on article writing. She specializes in time management and organization, but has also written about everyday life in the 1800s, gardening, parenting, and women’s health issues. In 2008, she changed her focus to fiction writing for children. Her first picture book, Little Shepherd, was released in August 2010 by Guardian Angel Publishing (GAP). 

Cheryl also writes under the name of C. C. Gevry. The first chapter reader, A Christmas Kindness, was released by 4RV Publishing in 2012, with a digital version following in 2013.
Ms. Malandrinos has edited numerous manuscripts in a variety of genres and ghostwritten a Christian chapter book. Cheryl has been a panelist at the WriteAngles Conference that takes place each fall at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley, MA, and offers writing workshops in her local school district. She is a member of the SCBWI, a book reviewer, and blogger. Cheryl lives in Western Massachusetts with her husband and two children. She also has a son who is married.
You can visit her at her website.

Feel free to comment.

Friday, December 4, 2015

New Release for Children's Author - Donna M. McDine

Dee and Deb Off They Go--Kindergarten First Day Jitters

Award-winning author Donna M. McDine has written an adorable picture book about the first day of kindergarten. She uses her first hand knowledge (having a twin sister of her own) to share what it might be like for separated twins on the first day of kindergarten. 

Many kids have fears regarding the first day of school, but this first day of school is especially worrisome for twins Dee and Deb. 

Deb and Dee head off for their first day of kindergarten together, but become separated when Dee goes to the K1 classroom and Deb goes to K2.

The rest of the book centers on Dee and her fears of being lost and alone without her twin sister for back up. But as usually is the case, Dee makes a friend, and the day flies by. Reunited at the end of the school day, Dee and Deb have so much more to talk about with their own accounts and experience of the day. And Dee can hardly wait for tomorrow.

The colorful and contagious illustrations are provided by Jack Foster.

He shows not just the similarities between the twins (their too-cute pigtails and matching outfits), but also their differences (Dee and Deb must be fraternal twins.) 

A truly entertaining book for any child embarking on the journey to kindergarten.

Donna’s book is available here

About the Author: Multi award-winning children’s author, Donna McDine’s creative side laid dormant for many years until her desire to write sparked in 2007. Her latest release Dee and Deb Off They Go Kindergarten First Day Jitters joins the four early reader children’s picture books, A Sandy Grave(January 2014), Powder Monkey (May 2013), Hockey Agony (January 2013) and The Golden Pathway (August 2010) all with Guardian Angel Publishing. Join McDine as her adventures continue as she ignites the curiosity of children through reading. She writes and moms from her home in the historical hamlet Tappan, NY. McDine is a member of the SCBWI.

Connect with Donna on the Web!

As always, feel free to comment. 

Saturday, May 2, 2015

Deep in the South

All things Southern:

I'm a transplanted Canadian, who is flourishing in the Deep South. Didn't take long for me to trade my "eh" for "y'all"and to embrace all things Southern. Okay, maybe not all things. I still don't care for grits. 

                                                  photo courtesy of

But from the moment I arrived, I fell in love with the people, their accents, their long-winded stories, and their unique and hilarious sayings. Every time I hear a new one I about bust a gut. 

Here's a few sayings employing tasty Southern food: 

photo courtesy of
“Well, butter my butt and call me a biscuit.”

“Well, if that don’t put pepper in the gumbo.”

"Well, that just dills my pickle and frosts my cupcake."

"Can't get blood from a turnip."

"Give me some sugar."

In the South, we love our porches and dogs:
"If you can’t run with the big dogs stay on the porch."
"Looks like somethin’ the dogs been keeping under the porch."                         "You're lyin' like a no-legged dog."

And a few more favorites:

"You could start an argument in an empty house." 

"The engine's running but nobody's driving."

“God love’em cuz' somebody’s got to."

"He squeezes a quarter so tight the eagle screams."

But the following sums up my feelings for the South:

A place where the tea is sweet and accents are sweeter.  Macaroni and cheese is a vegetable.  Front porches are wide and words are long.  Pecan pie is a staple.  Ya’ll is a proper noun.  Biscuits come with gravy.  Everything is darlin’.  And someone’s heart is always being blessed.

And, in case you were wondering. . .

Feel free to share your favorite sayings from the South or from where you live.