A Love Letter to My Daughter

Next week it will be your 4th birthday, my little princess. You’ve been waiting for this day for months. I can’t wait for you to have your tea party birthday with your girl friends- full of sweetness and fluff.

And then when all of your friends leave, you’ll take off the party dress and return to your regular state – full of contradictions. Tutus and cowboy hats, frilly dresses and construction goggles, twirly skirts and football t-shirts.

I love so many things about you, but I especially love how you dance to the beat of your own drum. Yes, it’s very frustrating when you disagree with me just because you can. But deep down, I want you to keep thinking for yourself and feel strong in your beliefs. It will come in handy as a young woman navigating the world.

I love when you smile- not for the camera, but when no one is looking. I hope you keep the ability to feel unfiltered joy for as long as you can.

And I love tucking you in at night. When I ask you about your favorite part of the day, and you tell me there are too many moments to choose, it fills up my heart.

Happy Birthday to my baby, my kitten, my sweetie, my heart. I hope this birthday and every one after is full of love and happiness.

Nails

Take a moment today to send a note to someone you care about. Even if it’s just a text, a quick email, or a call. Tell someone why they make you smile- it will make them smile too.

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A March Madness Contest – The Three Little Easter Bunnies

Susanna Leonard Hill is again hosting another fabulous contest over on her blog. This time we have been challenged to write a 400 word story that is a twist on a fractured fairytale, with Spring somewhere in the mix.  Below is my entry. Happy Spring to all our readers!

THE THREE LITTLE EASTER BUNNIES

Three little bunnies were training to be Easter Bunnies. Their next task was to carry a basket full of colored eggs up a steep hill, and then hide the eggs in the bushes at the top. This might seem like an easy task for three little bunnies, but to get to the top of the hill they had to cross a bridge guarded by a mean troll.

The first bunny tiptoed across the bridge – tap, tip, tap. “Who is that tapping across my bridge?” the troll growled.

“Just me,” the first bunny said. “Please let me cross the bridge.”

“Only those who can answer a riddle can cross my bridge,” the troll said. “What is yellow in the middle, white all around, and colored all over?”

“An Easter egg!” the bunny replied, and hopped across the bridge.

The second bunny bounded across the bridge – boom, bam, boom. “Who is that booming across my bridge?” the troll growled.

“Another bunny,” the second bunny said.

“Only those who can answer a riddle can cross my bridge,” the troll said. “What looks like a bean, but tastes like sugar?”

“A jelly bean!” the bunny replied, and hopped across the bridge.

The third bunny bounced across the bridge – boing, bing, boing. “Who is that boinging across my bridge?” the troll growled.

“A little brown bunny,” said the third bunny.

“Only those who can answer a riddle can cross my bridge,” the troll said. “What is white, looks like a trumpet, and grows tall from the ground?”

The third bunny was stumped.

“Well?” shouted the troll.

“I don’t know,” the bunny said.

“Then I will have to eat you up!” the trolled yelled, using his gnarled hands to climb up the side of the bridge. When he got to the top, sitting in the middle of the bridge was a small brown bunny.

“I’ve got you now!” the troll shouted and he jumped on top of the bunny, knocking it to the ground. The brown bunny broke into pieces.

The troll picked up a piece and sniffed. It smelled sweet. He licked the piece, and it tasted sweet too.  “Bunnies are yummy!” he said as he ate up all of the bunny pieces.

High up on the hill, three bunnies giggled as they watched the troll eating the chocolate bunny. Then they hopped away through the Easter lilies to hide their eggs.

Easter Eggs

What Are You Reading?

As a children’s book writer and a mother of 2 young kids, I read a ton of children’s books. We add a new batch of picture books to our reading list each week when we visit the library, and the kids eagerly expand their personal libraries when they get bookstore gift cards. I have a long list of “want to read” books, which include new books that have been recommended and classics that somehow escaped my childhood education.

My son and I are slowly working our way through the chapter books and young novels on the list, reading a few chapters each night together. We just finished The Borrowers (which my daughter also liked listening to), and now we are on to Holes. I like when there is a film version to show them afterwards. It results in some lively discussions about how the version on screen is similar of different than what they had built up in their minds. The Japanese anime movie The Secret Life of Arrietty is based on The Borrowers, which we’ll watch next week.

With all of these children’s books to read, sometimes I want a break to return to the adult world of literature. I have a big stack of writing craft books and a Jim Henson biography waiting for me, but my go-to books help me escape to somewhere else entirely. My favorites are fantasy, science fiction, and suspense/thrillers/crime.

Sometimes the categories blur a little between adult and young adult, like in the case of Harry Potter, Eragon, and The Lord of the Rings (all of which I absolutely loved). I just finished a Terry Pratchett novel called Snuff, featuring the complex and tell-it-like-it-is Commander Sam Vimes. Terry Pratchett is a comic fantasist, weaving dry humor, social commentary, and human nature into his Discworld novels. I have thoroughly enjoyed nearly everyone of his books, and his characterization of Death cracks me up every time.

I’m starting J.K. Rowling’s book, The Casual Vacancy, and then I’m on to some crime novels. I especially like Swedish crime novels right now (like Three Seconds), which I got interested in after reading The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo trilogy. Luckily, I’m a fast reader, because there are so many more books I want to read!

What are you reading right now? Who are your go-to authors? Please share your suggestions… I’d love to keep supplementing my list with good recommendations!

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