Miss Emily the Cat at Home in KCDC!

It has been such and honour to help support this important endeavour – and we are so excited to have these prints framed and hanging in the Kootenay Child Development Center! Read more by clicking the following link >>> MISS EMILY THE CAT AT HOME IN KCDC!

Kootenay Child Development Centre Opens April 1st – No Fooling!

The Kootenay Child Development Centre officially opens its doors on Sunday, April 1st, 2012 and I couldn’t be more excited for the families here in the Kootenays because I know how needed these services are and how hard people have worked to make this Centre a reality.

You see, even though there’s an estimated 700 children with disabilities in our region the nearest community of specialists is a 4½ hour drive through the Rocky mountains away.

And, even though we’re the only region in BC without this type of centre it wasn’t until last week that the provincial government announced it would provide $100,000.00 funding to our region for a child development centre.

Our community didn’t give up on doing what’s best for the children and families in our communities. In 2009 Community Connections Society of South East BC purchased the old Shannon’s Fabrics and planning and fundraising efforts began in earnest.

Thanks to the organizational and fundraising efforts of Gwen Noble, Jan McGinn, Patricia Whalen, Gail Brown and others and the generous support of families, individuals and businesses the Society has raised over $900,000 of its $1.1 million goal since 2009.

Anyone who’s familiar with Whimsical Publishing and Miss Emily Goes to Bat knows that Micheline and I are a part of that enthusiastic group of Kootenay Child Development Centre (KCDC) supporters.

When we first launched Miss Emily Goes to Bat we did a number of library and classroom readings and pledged 20% of our retail sales to the Centre. We’re also excited to donate two signed, numbered and framed prints of Miss Emily to the Centre.

Congratulations to everyone in the Kootenay region for making this centre a reality –it wouldn’t be a reality without your support! 🙂

For more information on the Kootenay Child Development Centre and some of its incredible sponsors or to make a donation visit the KCDC website at www.kootenaycdc.ca.

~ Trina

Is April Fools Really Just for Fools?

My kids love April Fools –possibly because it’s a way to get back at Dad for his years of tomfoolery. You see it’s been their dad’s practice to make outrageous claims to our kids for as long as any of us can remember. In fact it’s standard family practice for the kids to look to me for confirmation (or not) whenever Dad tells them anything.

Since toddlerhood my kids have been told that fried chicken is actually “gicken”, a genetically modified chicken that has six legs and runs as fast as a gopher. They’ve been told that that we used to have to cut holes in their diapers when the boys were babies because they were born with tails –which subsequently “dried up and fell off”; when Will or Thom ask where mom is the standard answer is that I’ve “run away with the ice-cream man.”

Our children’s true parentage has ranged from aliens to monkeys and Charley Cat is actually a superior being sent to study humans. Apparently we’ve agreed to allow him to board with us free of charge in exchange for immunity when the cat aliens take over the planet.

Thankfully my children have learned from a very young age that you can’t believe everything you hear. And they’ve gotten really good at questioning what they’re told –even the believable stuff.

According to Wikipedia April Fools has been around for a very long time with possible origins going as far back as 536 BC, Persia (now Iran). It makes me wonder whether these ancients recognized a benefit to foolery on the development of critical thinking skills.  Has April Fools actually helped us to become smarter, more discerning human beings? Or is it just one more way to produce what many refer to as “the best medicine”; laughter.

~ Trina

You can download a free larger printable PDF version of this April Fool’s colouring page by clicking here >>> Colouring Pages

Congratulations Mrs. Hammond!

Two of Micheline’s paintings hang in my dining room. My first acquisition hangs on my feature wall and was painted by Mich especially for my fortieth birthday. The second –and equally treasured painting—is a simple ladder leaning against a stone wall.

Both paintings are large, bold and imaginative and they suit my living space and my personality perfectly. But lately I’ve been admiring much smaller and quite different yet equally impressive works of art by Mich and wondering “aren’t they just as worthy of framing”? I’m referring of course to Mich’s amazing illustrations for our Miss Emily Goes to Bat children’s book.

Colourful, animated and well, yes…just a bit whimsical, these illustrations are so delightful I just couldn’t imagine confining them strictly to the pages of our story. And so I decided we wouldn’t. 🙂

Instead, Mich and I decided to offer up a contest to all of the wonderful teachers, librarians and booksellers who’ve opened up their classrooms, story-times and bookshelves to Miss Emily with the chance to win a signed, framed and numbered print of Miss Emily Goes to Bat.

We invited everyone who supported our Kootenay Child Development Fundraiser by hosting a reading to review our book for a chance to enter the draw. On Wednesday my son (and loveable story character), Thom, drew Marysville’s grade two elementary teacher Mrs. Josie Hammond as our winner. Congratulations Mrs. Hammond, and thanks for entering!

We’ve posted her review –along with a few other favourites—on our blog under the “News & Reviews” section. We had so much fun doing this contest that we’d love to do another one in the near future.  If anyone has an idea for a fun and creative contest, we’d love to hear from you!  Who knows, maybe you’ll be the next person to sport a signed, numbered Miss Emily print as part of your art collection…

~Trina