I not a blogger ( I'm faking it); I prefer to think of myself instead as a dramatic, creative lady who lives in the downstairs apartment. I'm the person hanging out by the communal mailbox who rambles with random thoughts, soapbox opinions and maybe a funny story or two to the folks passing by.
The craziest stuff seems to happen to me, and now that I've got my own website, I can share my books and all this craziness with you. So if you're feeling random ( or even a little crazy), stop by and read a while.
**UPDATE: I realized that I'm not a good blogger, but I'm still good at random thoughts, so please enjoy the older post below, but move on over to my Instagram and Facebook page to check out the most recent randomness**
Not another Nursery Rhyme Book!
I love nursery rhymes and fairy tales, but I felt like I'd read them all. So I wanted to write something extremely different, yet funny and relatable. I am very proud of this book, because it's realistic and it sends a great message to the kid in all of us. Even on the days where we feel that life is mundane and we're doing the same things for the 1ooth time, someone appreciates us and would notice if we quit.
I hope you enjoy reading about Little Star as much as I enjoyed creating him. Enjoy!
Back to School Jitters
My morning was filled with so much anticipation. I'm talking the Eminem moment in 8 mile right before he goes on stage. ( part of it could have been due to the stomache bug earlier in the week, but I doubt it). I think it was mostly nerves. Children aren't the only ones that get the back-to-school jitters. I had them early this morning just thinking about the day ahead.
Fortunately as soon as I hit the 3rd floor of Bloomingdales and entered the childrens department the nerves faded away. The children are my first priority, and I always want them to have lots of fun and enjoy the crafts, activites and the books (of course). My book events aren't just about the books, it's an experience. I want to create lasting memories. I hope that The AMAZING adventures of Anita Brownbag will be the book that gets passed down for many generations, or will get tucked away as a favorite along with the binkie & first pair of shoes.
I meet wonderful new people at each show, and enjoy the support of current Anita Brownbag fans. If I've learned anything, the most important things is to know that you can never have too many balloons. Kids of all ages love them. So next time look for our custom Anita Brownbag balloons and her new book.. Stick with us, together we can continue to Make Reading with Your Kids an Adventure!
Next Stop - Bloomingdales, Lenox Mall 8/15
The AMAZING Adventures of Anita Brownbag will be in Atlanta GA, with Bloomingdales Children's department from noon- 2pm August 15th . Even if you are pressed for time, stop by anyway. I assure you that your kids will be able to have a lot fun very quickly, and they will enjoy the colorful picture & activity books that are sure to keep them busy on the way home.
We have a quick "Make your Mark" craft for each child, some goodies in the Bloomingdale's iconic "little brown bag", and you can get your favorite Anita Brownbag book autographed for your special little one. At our booth there will be :
Children's Coloring Activities
"Make your Mark" Arts and Crafts
Children's Picture Book Signing
I think that we should have a hula hoop contest but only if I can remember how. You'll have to stop by and show me how to do it! Hope to see you there.
First Book Signing
Coffee & Crayons was an AWESOME event. I was so nervous about hosting my own book signing. I can admit now that I was terrified that no one would show up, which would have been so disappointing with all of the planning and effort. All the hardwork paid off, and I had a wonderful turnout, in fact so great that I forgot to take pictures of all the folks there at one time. I took one shortly after set up so I'm sharing it below. A quick shout out to Mr. Kevin H. and his family who won the Keurig drawing. Thanks for participating and enjoying the fun. The coloring pages and guessing games were also a big hit. The early readers really enjoyed the coloring activities and interestingly enough...balloons.
So excited about this great event! No time to rest on my laurels, gotta keep sharing the AMAZING adventures of Anita Brownbag with my tiny readers!!
Coffee & Crayons
Can you believe it's back to school time in less than a month for the kids. It feels like summer just arrived. I have enjoyed the long hours of daylight, and the lighter traffic patterns. I really enjoyed hanging out on the patio with a great cup of coffee while watching the people walking or driving by. However if I don't have coffee at home, there is a wonderful boutique coffee shop in North Charlotte that has great coffee & amazing pastries; you can even grab a sandwich and a glass of wine later in the evenings. I enjoy this place so much that I decided to have my first book signing there.
Join me for COFFEE & CRAYONS, my first book signing event featuring all the children's picture books in "The Amazing Adventures of ANITA BROWNBAG" series, Saturday August 8th from 10- 12pm at Cafeccino's Coffeehouse.
Why should you stop by? Great Question!!
1) Free Coffee, who doesn't like free stuff?
2) It keeps the kids busy, you could use the break can't you?
-> There is an amazing Giant word puzzle that moms and kids can do together.
-> A guessing game that gives you a chance to win school supplies.
-> If your little ones are too small for word puzzles or guessing games, there is a huge color by number station where your tiny ones can have crayon fun while you sip and chat with other moms.
It's only 2hrs with so much to do. So don't forget to peruse the book series selection and purchase your autographed copy. Anyone who makes a book purchase will be entered into the onsite drawing for a Brand New Keurig!!
What is a better way to get your weekend started than sipping tasty coffee , with coloring fun for the kids on a Saturday morning? Hhmmm... You're right, nothing! So come hang with me and more mommies & coffee lovers on Saturday for some fun.
If you're lucky you might just win a prize!! See you Saturday, Aug 8th.
Deserted Island - Romantic or Nah?
I'm a sucker for a good romance novel. It's so easy to get lost in the world of the strong persisent alpha male, pursuing the smitten yet conflicted female lead character. I enjoy watching the story develop and the inevitable love connection and of course the happliy ever after. My book choice for this July was a romance novel Illusion: Swept Away by JS Cooper. I wont spoil it for you by spilling too much information here, but let's just say two really attractive people are kidnapped, find themselves on a deserted island, must depend on each other for their survival and you'll have to read the rest.
On a side note my newest obsession is the survival show "Naked & Afraid". Two strangers a male and female are dropped into a remote location and must depend on each other to survive. They are not clothed and only have 1 or 2 primitive survival tools. Unlike my romance novel, most are not attracted to each other. Most of them struggle to partner with each other, let alone make a love connection.
So much for a Deserted Island Romance experience. From what I can see weekly on Naked & Afraid, it is clear that there is nothing sexy or romantic about being stranded on a deserted island. My romance novel has been ruined by my mind grappling with reality It's not that the book isn't yummy and quite romantic....I just keep finding myself thinking.
1) Did they build a shelter?
2) Have they found a fresh water source?
3) What have they eaten?
4) They must smell terrible, look hairy & unkept and feel pretty crappy overall.
How sexy can that really be. My vote is Nah, but you can check them both out for yourself and tell me what you think.
What's your passion?
It goes without saying that I have a passion for the written word. I love to write, I love to read and even enjoy engaging and socializing with great orators. Words are powerful and very important to me. I take words quite seriously, not only the ones that I say, but the words that are said to me as well...so I guess as you can tell that's my passion. I love being an children's author. I think that there is something within our internal biological clock when we hit middle age that triggers us to think more outside of ourselves and our routines. We begin to feel an uneasiness about where we are in life and what we are doing and maybe even begin to question the meaning of it all. This is where passion kicks in.
Does everyone have something that they are passionate about? I would imagine so but I"m not quite sure. I have a friend who is extremely passionate about jewelry, and you can see that here ( http://www.designsbyrandi.com/) with her carefully crafted custom pieces. I also know a great photographer (http://bit.ly/1JQbtbP/ ) who does amazing wedding and engagement photos. They are so beautiful that they are capable of transforming the worst skeptics into believers of true love. Who knew someone could be passionate about kid parties? I know someone who does it flawlessly (http://moo-woo.com/). I think people who choose to pursue their passion are so brave and so very very lucky!
Someone once told me that your passion is the one thing that you would always do even if you weren't getting paid for it. So ask yourself if I weren't afraid, and there were no barriers what would I do? Who would I be? What are you passionate about?
What am I reading Now?
Her Husband's Secret by Liane Moriarty was my May book selection. The first eight chapters drove me INSANE because the books rambles after introducing a character. It spiderwebs through memories and layers of the her person life that have nothing to do with "the husbands secret". It is one of those books that you have to read fairly intently, and not let your mind wander or you'll miss something important. It all starts to come together by chapter 8. It's clear the author was creating character depth. She's lucky I hung in there or I probably would have missed out on a pretty good book so far.
UPDATE: At chapter 19, I simply could not stop reading this.
FINAL UPDATE: After you get halfway through it's a great read. The BEST part is actually the epilogue, so don't give up and keep reading.
My favorite Books
I'm a book junkie, and when I get some more time for randomness I will actually post a few book reviews for the titles that I've read recently on this site. I read everything from John Grisholm to William Paul Young to Joyce Meyer. Asking for a favorite book or author is like picking your favorite kid. #Icant
Where did Anita Brownbag come from?
I had a image of this really mischevious and bossy little lady, and I couldn't find quite the right name for her. She reminded me alot of myself as a child growing up in Greensboro NC, with elements of other pieces of my life or people I'd crossed paths with. I carried a brown paper back lunch for nearly a decade as a child. I hated it. Even worse, my mom made us reuse them so it got pretty thin, greasy and smelly by the end of the week. I became famous for my used paper bag lunches and was affectionately (not really that affectionate) called "Anita Brownbag". The memory sprang into my mind one day, and She was born.
How do you write a children's book?
I get asked this all the time. It's a very anticlimatic story, but here goes. My son Jay and were lazily sitting around on the couch one afternoon. I was attempting to persuade him to abandon his aspirations of being a rapper. The last thing the words needs is another rapper Yeesh!! I wanted him to use his impressive rhymic word skills for good. So as we were playing around I started him feeding him a line, and having him fill in the next one. EUREKA! Our first book. I researched and as I learned more about the art of writing childrens books; I really wanted to have a lastig impression with children and began to write books that were fun but with more focus. Jay completely lost interest and moved on...kids!! But....at least he's not a rapper. Lol.