Monday, March 29, 2010

My First, and Unfortunately Not My Last, TV Interview

I had my first TV interview yesterday - it was a fantastic experience - until I saw myself on TV!!  The people at ABC were so nice and helpful and made me feel very comfortable - as comfortable as I could be doing a LIVE TV interview!!  Here's a link in case you want to watch - it wasn't perfect but it was better than I expected - I didn't faint or have a major brain freeze! 

The wonderful marketers for Cheerios put me and my two sisters up in a beautiful hotel right across the street from the studio - which we appreciated at 6:00 in the morning! 

At the studio, we waited in the "Green Room" 

My sister, Mindy, wrote, "The Grusin sisters were here" on the wall!
I was "miked" by Mike - really!

I was interviewed by Kevin Roy,
who did a wonderful job of
covering for my flubs!!


The "news room" is a lot smaller than I thought it would be.  There was a small platform off to the side where Kevin and I sat for my interview.  I don't have a picture of us together because I made my sisters leave right before Kevin sat down.  I was afraid I'd look at them and start laughing so they watched in the green room! 

Here's a view of the set from the sidewalk in front of the building.  The whole thing was very cool!!

Sunday, March 21, 2010

My First (last?) Major Newspaper Interview!

My first (last?) interview for a major newspaper, the Chicago Sun-Times, came out today.  It's exciting, but a bit embarrassing - especially the gigantic picture of me!  I was a little uncomfortable with the online picture - about 2" x 2" - then I saw the picture in the actual paper -  about 6" x 6" - it's hard to hide the imperfections in a picture that big!!  Oh well, I am what I am :-)

I think Delia O'Hara did a great job and I appreciate her leaving out some of the idiotic, nerve-driven, things I babbled on about during our phone interview!,SHO-Books-chilit21.article

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

Happy St. Patrick's Day!

32 years ago - wow, I'm old - I went to visit my boyfriend in Ireland and he took me to Blarney Castle to kiss the Blarney stone.  We climbed up to the top of the beautiful old castle, full of history and magic.
When we got to the spot where you kiss the stone, we found a gruff man who appeared to have come straight from a long night at the pub.  He said that, to reach the stone, I needed to lay on my back and hang upside down over the edge.  He assured me, he wouldn't let me drop.  Keep in mind, he said this with a cigarette hanging out his mouth, smoke billowing into his eyes, and wreaking of stale beer.

 Well, being a typical 20-year-old, I said, "Ok, thanks!"  and I did it!  I don't have a picture of ME doing it but I found this online - it'll give you an idea of what Im talking about.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Britain's Smallest Library - Thinking Inside the Box

Villagers in the Somerset Village of Westbury-sub-Mendip have found a "novel" way to cope with the shortage of libraries in their area by turning an old red phone box into a book exchange.  The villagers set up the book box after their mobile library services were canceled.

I bet this is where Redbox DVD rentals stole got their idea.  I would love to go there to check it out - any excuse to go to England!  If only someone would bankroll it . . .

Sunday, March 14, 2010

What's The Difference? by Suzanne Slade

My friend, Suzanne Slade's latest book, What's The Difference?, is now available for sale!  Suzanne has written more than 60 books!!  I can't even imagine that!   

What's The Difference? (the sequel to What's New at the Zoo?) uses clever rhyming verse to show the difference caring people can make in helping endangered animals - all while practicing subtraction skills. 

You can check it out here


Links are provided for informational use.  Please don't forget your local independent bookstores!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

3rd Annual Cheerios Winners Announced

Yahoo - the 3rd Annual Cheerios New Author winners were finally announced!  And the winner is . . .

Laurie Isop for her story "How Do You Hug a Porcupine?"

And the runners up are . . .

Billie Fowler for her story "Samuel T. Slingshot"

Jessica Young for her story "Juliet the Jellyfish"

Read all about it here!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

In a Cheerios Box Near You - Finally!!

Well, I finally got the green light to make this announcement:

The Cheerios boxes with my book inside are in a grocery store near you NOW!! 

As of today, spottings have been reported at Walmart, Jewel, Cub Foods, Safeway and Wegmans, but they should be in most grocery stores by the end of the month.  The picture on the left was taken by my son at his Walmart by ISU.  It's a very surreal thing seeing my book on the front of the box and even more surreal seeing my picture on the back - yikes!!

The book is written in English and Spanish - I actually like the Spanish title better - 1 Zoo Loco!  Next time you're shopping, check out the cereal isle :-)

Saturday, March 6, 2010

A Comedy of Errors #2

 This one's a quickie:  I took my son to his first job fair this morning and I was worried he'd be late.  We were waiting to turn left out of our subdivision and that light always takes forever.  It was 6:45 on a Saturday morning and not a car in sight.  My son told me to turn through the red light.  I said I didn't want to go through a red light so I turned right and made a quick u-turn (also illegal because of the double yellow lines - but not as blatant as going through a red light).  What I didn't realize was, while I was making my u-turn, the light changed, so I ended up driving through a red light anyway!

New widget - Ideas For Change In America

I added a new widget - it's over there, below my profile picture.  Right now they're in 16th place and need 329 more votes to be one of the ten winning ideas! 

While you're there, check out the other great ideas - once you sign up, you get 10 votes.  There are some amazing ideas - I'll post my other favorites when I find them.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Read Aloud - Think Aloud To Improve Comprehension

This great site, Reading Rockets, was suggested in an email from Anastasia Suen.  The whole site is great but the particular articles she recommends are about  "Reading Aloud" and "Thinking Aloud" to help students increase reading comprehension.   Both articles discuss the power of reading and show how to model strategies typically used by thoughtful readers.

I have several students with whom I work on reading and listening comprehension and I'm going to try these techniques ASAP!

I'll report back about how it works for my students - if you use these techniques too, let me know how it goes.