Eleven years ago my short story “The Jobo Tree” (pronounced Hobo Tree) was published in the September 2006 issue of Highlights for Children magazine.
Soon after it was published, I received an award in the mail for “Author of the Month.” I didn’t know Highlights gave out such an award, but it’s pretty cool, an engraved eight-inch pewter plate. I framed it so I could hang it on the wall.
At the time the story was published, I didn’t have any grandchildren and would have to wait a good four years for the first grandchild to be born.
Twinkle Eyes (my nickname for her) will be eight in February. There are four more grand darlings: Grasshopper – age six, Sweet Pea – age four, Ninja Doll – age four (they’re cousins, not twins), and Chatty Girl the youngest is two.
The eight- and six-year-olds know how to read now, and the younger ones enjoy books and stories, so it got me thinking I should record myself reading my short stories and some chapters from my novels, especially since Grasshopper and Ninja Doll moved across the country and I don’t get to see them very often.
Now they can enjoy Grammy’s stories on YouTube anytime they’re allowed to watch them. They can also share them with their friends. What’s really cool about making videos of my stories is that it makes them accessible to millions of children. Yahoo!
“The Jobo Tree” is a sweet story. Grownups enjoy it, too, because — well, I’m not going to give away the twist, but it’s a feel good, happy tale.
Here’s a video about the Author-of-the-Month award:
I also got some press coverage. The Daily News (High Desert in California) published an article:
So, here we are heading full speed into the holidays. I’m never ready for them.
This coming week my husband George and I will find out the results of the testing he had done last week (whole body PET scan and MRI of the brain). I’m expecting no change from two months ago, which means, yes, there’s still a trace of cancer in his brain, but it’s not spreading. I’m kind of holding my breath waiting for the good news.
George is doing quite well, enjoying riding his bike and doing a bit of gardening, but he will be scheduled for maintenance chemo next week. We’re hoping he tolerates it much better than the last time, which was the end of May.
If George gets a good report on the PET scan and MRI, our lives will be that much closer to our old normal and I’ll focus more on writing again and maybe even get my health coaching business launched, and George will be relieved knowing there will be many future opportunities to spend precious time with family.
I’m supposed to be writing blog posts about this journey we’ve been on in dealing with his cancer, but it’s challenging me to relive the memories. I promise I’ll have a decent post updating you before the end of the month.
In the meantime, I view each day as a miracle. It gives life a whole new perspective. I’ve also been reflecting on where we’ve been, where we’re at now, and where we’re going. Maybe I’m crazy or maybe I’m in denial, but I remain ever hopeful and thankful that George is active and making the most of each day. He’s pretty incredible and quite inspiring!
What are you up to? Getting ready for the holidays? Do you enjoy children’s stories? Do you have children or grandkids who bring joy and laughter to your life? I’d love to hear what’s happening in your neck of the woods.