Monday, August 31, 2009

TMTOMH Disorder - I'm cured

After three long months of suffering from TMTOMH (Too Much Time On My Hands) Disorder, I'm cured! I started back to work a week ago today and you'd think that would have a negative impact on my writing but, as with many things in my life, it has done the opposite of what you'd logically expect. This weekend, I did more productive writing than I have all summer - go figure!! All I know is, I'm going to take advantage of my remission of TMTOMH Disorder and write as much as possible during the next nine months!

Anyone else have this disorder?

Saturday, August 29, 2009

Another New School Year

John and I are empty nesters again! I drove Brian to ISU two weeks ago and drove Sean's mattress (on the top of my car) and the other things he couldn't fit in his car to WIU last week. I have to say, John and I did a great job of tying down the mattress but I still drove with one eye in the rear view mirror the whole way and I didn't drive over 60 mph! The only positive about it (other than the mattress not flying off the car and causing a major accident) is that I knew for sure I wouldn't get a speeding ticket!

I finished my first week of the new school year and I'm still standing! I took on the role of lead teacher for our department so I'll be doing that part time and teaching part time. I can already tell it's going to be difficult balancing both but I'm sure I'll get a handle on it before too long. Then I'll have to figure out how to fit in my writing and blogging and socializing and . . .

Wish me luck!

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Writer's Wednesday: Blue Rose Girls

I found a great site called Blue Rose Girls. It's hosted by seven children's book professionals who discuss their lives in books. The blue girls are primarily authors and illustrators but they also have a teacher and editors. Check it out!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Youtube Tuesday: Three Funny Videos On Writing

Here are three funny videos on writing. I know Wednesdays' blogs are about writing but Tuesdays' blogs are about youtube so - what the heck.

Sunday, August 16, 2009

Me Monday: Goodbye Boys - Hello Facebook

I drove Brian to ISU yesterday and will drive some of Sean's stuff to WIU on Friday. It's going to be awfully quiet around here! I'm going to miss them :(

Also, I went public on Facebook this weekend and I've connected with some old friends - it's fun! I'm giving Twitter another try too :)

Friday, August 14, 2009

Favorite Friday: Comedy Shows

Here's a list of my top 10, all-time favorite comedy shows:

- The Andy Griffith Show
- Arrested Development
- Barney Miller
- The Dick Van Dyke Show
- Freaks and Geeks
- The Mary Tyler Moore Show
- Mash
- Seinfeld
- Sex and the City
- Two and a Half Men

What are yours?

Thursday, August 13, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday: One Click Donations

I found three great sites that allow you to "donate" money just by clicking a button. These sites are funded by various companies who sponsor the site for a day. Every sponsor makes a donation for each user who clicks on the site during the day.

I put these sites in my toolbar and have made a habit of going to them the first time I'm on my computer. It takes less than 30 seconds to do all three.

The sites are:
The Hunger Site
The Animal Rescue Site
The Breast Cancer Site

I just got this link from the blueboards: It's a vocabulary test and for every answer you get right, they donate 10 grains of rice through the UN World Food Program to help end hunger.

If anyone knows of other sites like this, please share!

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Writer's Wednesday: My Book Cover!!

I'm SOOOO excited to be able to share the cover for my first, and hopefully not last, picture book! All of the illustrations are complete and they've been sent, along with the text, to the printer for first proofs!

Isn't Colin Jack fantastic? He has a Dr. Suess-type quality - don't you think?

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Youtube Tuesday: Portable Restroom Prank

This is too funny - I don't know who thinks these things up, but I'm glad they do!

Monday, August 10, 2009

Me Monday: Time To Rhyme

It occurred to me that I've only written one rhyme on this blog, which is pretty pathetic considering my blog's title. So, here's a new rhyme I just wrote:

Who am I?

I'm a writer, a rhymer,

An I'm in my primer,

A traveling teacher,

A play at the beacher,

A wife and a mother,

A sis to my brother,

A happy dog owner,

A talk on the phoner,

A tarot card reader,

An I hate to weeder,

A big movie goer,

A vegetable grower,

A spicy food eater,

A fearsome competer,

An avid game player

An I sing all dayer,

Well, that's all I've gotter

Believe it or notter.

Sunday, August 9, 2009

SCBWI Conference Envy

I admit it - I'm so envious of the people able to attend the annual SCBWI Conference in LA this weekend! To make matters worse, my agent, Jamie Weiss Chilton, is presenting there and I would have loved to meet her in person and hear her speak!

For those of you who want to live vicariously through these lucky few, here's a link to the SCBWI Conference Blog.
For those of you who did attend, I hope you had a great time and thanks for sharing on the blog!

Friday, August 7, 2009

Favorite Friday: Picture Books

Here's a list of some of my favorite picture books. What are some of yours?
- A Fly Went By
- Are You My Mother
- Five Chinese Brothers
- Go Dogs Go
- Green Eggs And Ham
- Happy Birthday Moon
- Harold And The Purple Crayon
- Hurry Hurry
- Jumanji
- Little Bear Books
- Little Critter Books
- Love You Forever
- One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish
- Polar Express
- Sylvester And The Magic Pebble
- That Terrible Halloween Night
- The Giving Tree
- The Little House
- The Mitten
- Thomas' Snowsuit
- What Do You Say Dear?

Thursday, August 6, 2009

Thoughtful Thursday: Volunteer Match

I found a great website: Volunteer Match is just what it sounds like - they match up organizations in need of volunteers with people looking for ways to help. According to their site, they currently have 68,837 participating organizations, 59,077 volunteer opportunities, and they've made 4,266,106 referrals since 1998.

Through this site I found an opportunity to volunteer with the American Cancer Society. I went to training yesterday and soon I'll be driving cancer patients to and/or from their doctors' appointments. Before I read about this on the site, I had no idea that there was a need for this. It makes sense, though, since so many people live alone or with people who can't drive them to their appointments. I'll let you know how it goes after I've gotten started. I'm really looking forward to it.

Let me know if you find a volunteer opportunity that works for you.

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

Writer's Wednesday: Successful Blogging

I just found a great site for those of us trying to get the most out of blogging. It's called I've only looked at a few posts but I know it's going to be very helpful. Here's what it says on their "about" page:

What are the missing ingredients that prevents most people from succeeding online?

Copywriting and content marketing skills.

Content drives the Internet, and using the right words in the right way will determine not only how well your site converts visitors into sales, but also how well you rank in search engines and how many links you get.

Now that blogging has become the smartest strategy for growing an authoritative web site, it’s your copywriting and content marketing skills that will set you apart and help you succeed. Copyblogger is all about helping you:

  • get traffic
  • gain subscribers
  • attract links
  • sell something!

All you need to do is write in a strategic, persuasive, compelling manner.

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Youtube Tuesday: Perpetuum Jazzile

This is an amazing youtube video of Perpetuum Jazzile, Slovenia's only jazz choir. In this video, Perpetuum Jazzile performs the song Africa, written by David Paich & Jeff Porcaro and originally performed by their band, Toto. Here's what David Paich said about this performance on Perpetuum Jazzile's website:

My name is David Paich. When I wrote Africa I never dreamed of hearing such an innovative rendition. All I can say is awesome!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am truly honored that you not only would arrange a choir version of the song but the time and effort into creating REAL MAGIC! I have NEVER received so many emails from artists friends and colleagues

Me Monday: The Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center

My Mother, sons, sister, niece and I went to the The Illinois Holocaust Museum & Education Center yesterday. We were there for 2 1/2 hours and only saw the exhibit on the main level (there are three), which is set up with hallways from one small room to another. The rooms are arranged in chronological order, from German-Jewish life before the start of Nazism, to the rise of the Nazi Party, to the concentration camps, to liberation from the camps, and finally to the survivors' assimilation back into society. Each room has a video, running on a continuous loop, that uses a combination of authentic photographs and film clips to support the stories being told by survivors. There are also artifacts and informative placards along the way.

Though I've heard stories, seen movies and read books about the Holocaust before, I am always saddened, frustrated, and angered by the insane cruelty of it all! Don't get me started!

It was a truly moving experience - I highly recommend it to those of you in the Chicago area!

Daily Themes

After seeing daily themes on a few other blogs, I decided to give it a try myself. I'm a deadline & tight parameters type of person so I think it will help me to blog more regularly. Also, if I make a commitment, I'm more apt to follow through - thanks to Jewish guilt! So, here's my plan - for now:

Me Mondays
Youtube Tuesdays
Writer's Wednesdays
Thoughtful Thursdays
Favorite Fridays
Anything Goes Saturdays & Sundays

So, look for my first themed post on Monday - and it's my favorite topic - ME!