Wednesday, August 15, 2012

Guest Blog!

Come visit our friend Karen Elliott's blog during Kids' Week this week!

Monday, August 6, 2012

Wiki Socks

We found this fun tutorial on how to knit a pair of your very own socks on Wiki How. After I finish my current pair of "Pedicure Socks" I will be trying this!

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Exciting News!

StoryCub    will be featuring Stinky Feet on their website soon. When the video is done, you'll also be able to find Stinky Feet on StoryCub's podcast on iTunes! We are so excited!

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Foot Thongs

  About eight years ago, a friend of mine brought me a page she had ripped out of a popular home business catalog that was a picture of foot thongs. She had seen some of the beaded, crocheted, little coin bags I had made, and she asked me if I could make some thongs for her. I said, "Sure, I can," because I am talented when it comes to looking at something and figuring out how to crochet it. I made them exactly like the thongs in the picture. They looked really cool when I was done with them. Then I thought, "Why not change the pattern around and make some different ones," because once I make something I like to play around with the pattern a little to see what happens. I made about ten pairs of thongs that summer; a few pairs for my friend, and a few for each of my daughters. Beside the fact that my daughters had seen the foot thongs, and thought they were really cool, I thought that if Miranda wore them all summer perhaps it would be an easier transition to wearing fun socks in the Fall. She still didn't want to wear the socks in the Fall, but she loved the thongs and wore them for the next few summers until they were too small.
  It's been a few years since I've made foot thongs. Writing "Stinky Feet" got me thinking about them, so I rattled my memory a little, looked online for some ideas and measurements, strung some beads on a few balls of crochet thread, and started to experiment.
  I showed them to my friends when they came to visit, and one of them asked if I could make some for her (to give to a friend) and she would pay me. Of course our youngest daughter saw me crocheting them and asked if she could have them, so I had to make a pair for her.
  I took pictures of them to share here - it's nice to have foot models lying around the house. The larger foot thongs are made for feet larger than Miranda's, so she twisted them up to fit her feet. I scaled the flower down for the little feet. Have you ever worn foot thongs? What do you like to wear on your feet in the summer?

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Book Availability

As some of you may have noticed, the book was unavailable for a few days. I apologize for this. Writing and self-publishing your first book is a learning experience. I learned that perhaps I need to print out a few more advanced copies and let more beta readers (or test readers) read the book and give me their feedback. Some more of my beta readers (aka friends and family) thought the ending for the first printing of the book was a little unclear, so we made a small change to the ending, and we added some thought questions. The book is now up again, and ready for orders! You can find the book at:

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Pictures of "Stinky Feet"

This is the front cover of the book.

This is somewhere in the middle of the book. We took the 2 year old shoe shopping today and she took just as much time as Miranda used to take! Sheesh!

This is the back cover of the book. Todd spent hours and hours on the shoe pile. There are some really fun shoes if you take the time to look. That's one of the fun things about children's picture books; lots of times the illustrators put in different, fun things for you to find every time you re-read a book.

Hello and "Stinky Feet"

     Welcome to my writer's blog! There are a few reasons I want to have a blog. The first reason is that I want to have activities to go along with my books, and the second reason is I hope you find many tools and questions to help you on your writer's journey. Some of my posts will be fun and some will be serious. (Phew! I thought I had lost my notes on some of the things I want to put in this blog, but I found the papers. Yay!)
     Oh, before I get going, I want you to know that if I am going to write something that people call a "spoiler alert" (which means that you haven't read the book yet and if I write what I want to write, it might spoil some of the surprises) I will write *SPOILER ALERT.* Then you can choose to either read what I've written and spoil the surprise, or you can skip it and still be surprised.
    "Stinky Feet" is the very first book I have written (though I've read hundreds of children's books, and I love to read them to young children, especially my own). The blurb I put on the back of the book says, "Miranda has a pungent problem: She doesn't like to wear socks, so her feet smell. Her mother tries everything she can think of to help with the odor. Will they ever find a solution to her stinky feet?"
    I have been working on this book since some time in 2006 or 2007. The idea came to me while I was sitting with my daughter Miranda in the dentist's office. I didn't have a pen or a piece of paper, so I asked the hygienist if I could borrow one. She found a piece of paper and a pen for me and the story was born.
    It takes a lot of time to write a book, even a book like "Stinky Feet" that seems pretty short and simple. I can't remember how many times I re-wrote parts of the story, and the ending has changed a dozen times.
    These are the things I learned as I wrote this book:
*You can keep parts of your writing that seem really bad, and then you can re-write them to make them better.
*Sometimes though, you have to throw away parts that you really like.
*Small scenes, or small bits of a book, can be expanded into a story all their own.
     As this blog grows, I have planned to write thought questions about the book, a sort of "reading guide." I have noticed that a lot of books have those types of questions and I like how questions make you think about what you're reading. If you have thought questions that you come up with, I'd like to hear them too!
     I wrote "Stinky Feet" for children ages 6 - 8, but it might be hard for second or third graders to read it by themselves. (It's been a long time since I was 6 or 8 years old!) I will tell you right now that my 2 year old daughter LOVES this book. She may not understand all the words, but she understands the story by looking at the pictures. Last night, she was trying to "read" the story to her cousin. I think that just because a children's book is written for children, it can still be challenging to read. I like it when I'm reading a book and I have to look in a dictionary to figure out what a word means. I'm having fun reading, but I'm also learning at the same time. I really like it when my children ask me (even my teenagers will ask me!) to read together with them.
     You may notice on the cover that my husband, Todd, illustrated the book. I think he did a fabulous job! His pictures are terrific! He may guest post on this blog every once in a while and if you have a question about illustrating, feel free to ask. I'll pass it along to him.
Let the adventure begin!