Rainy Days

It’s raining and the weather forecast is calling for more. In a few days I will feel trapped in my house, longing to see something brighter than my daughter’s yellow umbrella.  In a few days — or heck, who am I kidding? a few hours — I will be checking the basement for water and searching for the wet vac and trying to stop the kids from yelling at each other over who ate the last pumpkin bar. I will be urging everyone to help me clean the sun room, which everyone will rebel against based on the fact that there isn’t any sun. I will be reading news reports about flooding and falling trees and hurricanes.

But for now, at the beginning of the storm, I am loving the thrum of the rain on my roof, the cat yawning in my lap, the smell of chicken and dumplings bubbling in the crock pot.

For now I am loving that the rain is giving my family an excuse to stop. To read. To be as lazy as this gray day will allow.

We’re not rushing off to afternoon soccer practice. This weekend’s games will likely be cancelled, too, so for a moment, I imagine putting something different on our schedule — something new and out of the routine. Maybe I will. Or maybe I’ll find some old movies, black and white to match the sky. Maybe I’ll just stay here with the cat, listen to the thrum, and write.




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News and Updates

Hi, all.

Nanny X Returns is officially out today. It’s available online or you can order through a bookstore near you. I hope you will!

Meanwhile, Nanny X has been put on the reading list for the Land of Enchantment Book Award. I’m happy to know Nanny X and the gang are hanging out with school kids in New Mexico. If any librarians in that fair state are reading the books with their kiddos and would like to do a Skype visit, please contact me. I have never been to New Mexico and would love to go, at least virtually!

I’ve updated some of my events on the event page and am still adding more.

One of my recent events included moderating a panel at One More Page, where I got to spend time with area illustrator-authors who have serious talent. (I’ve decided to call them illustrator-authors because all of them came by art and illustration first.) My own books wouldn’t exist without illustrators who can breathe color and oxygen into my words, so I was grateful for the chance to talk to these folks.

The panel included Gareth Hinds, best known for his series of graphic-novel adaptations of the classics, Theodore Taylor III, who illustrated When the Beat was Born: DJ Kool Herc and the Creation of Hip Hop, along with the Little Shaq series, Kate Samworth, whose Aviary Wonders I have stared at for longer than I can say, and Rashin Kheiriyeh, whose bright folktales are new to the U.S., though she’s been publishing internationally for some time.

Here’s a photo, snapped by OMP’s lovely owner, Eileen McGervey:

L to R: Me, Kate, Gareth, Rashin, Theodore3

L to R: Me, Kate, Gareth, Rashin, Theodore3 Photo/Eileen McGervey

The other event I did recently was the Super Readers luncheon at DC Public Libraries. This is where young readers who have completed a certain number of books during the summer are placed in a drawing to win lunch with me and a bunch of other DC-area authors. Which I guess makes us Trophy Authors.  Our group included Theodre again, along with Shadra Strickland (who drew portraits of each Super Reader), Fred Bowen, Mary Quattlebaum, Wendy Shang, Hena Khan and me.

And here’s a photo taken by Librarian Theresa Wang:

DC-area authors & illustrators, l to r: Theodore3, Shadra, Fred, Mary, Wendy, Hena, Me.  Photo/Theresa Wang

DC-area authors & illustrators, l to r: Theodore3, Shadra, Fred, Mary, Wendy, Hena, Me. Photo/Theresa Wang

In other news, I have chicken and dumplings cooking in the crockpot, it’s pouring rain outside, and I’m feeling inspired, so look for another post soon!



Posted in art, how to behave at a dog show, illustration, nannies, Nanny X, picture books, read local, reading with kids | Leave a comment

Mother-in-law of the Year

It’s not every mother-in-law who would borrow a leather jacket and go walking down the street in bunny slippers in August. Just sayin’….

My son, director, dolly, cameraman and key grip.

My son, director, dolly, cameraman and key grip.


Grandma S is ready to go!

Grandma S is ready to go!

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Nanny X Returns

New trailer for Nanny X Returns, courtesy of Kid 1 and my sweet mother-in-law, who is once again game for anything. More photos of our behind-the-scenes shoot in a bit…

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And How to Behave at a Dog Show is officially out today!

Please look for it at a bookstore near you!


Barnes and Noble



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