Thoughts & Perceptions

These children’s books may not have words, but their images say so much

July 25, 2018

(published in the News and Observer, July 7, 2018) ( In March I met with Mary Andrews and Nancy Zeman, the founders of Family Reading Partners (FRP) to share new wordless, or near wordless books. I’ve recommended wordless books for years. They read more »

A tale of 2 books about the VP’s bunny: one from John Oliver, the other Pence’s family

March 30, 2018

(Published in the News and Observer, 3/29/18) Easter is definitely the time for rabbit-y children’s books, but this season it’s a bunny beat bunny world. Politics have entered the children’s book ring, and there are two titles facing off. read more »

12 Books by Local Authors to Add to Your Kids’ Library

October 28, 2017

  The wonderful Susan Romaine, one of the founders of PORCH and initiator of Planting Hope sent me this link. This book has had such a nice run. I was proud and happy to make this list published in Durham read more »

STEAM Workshop

September 24, 2017

I fell in love with a picture book this week–Dave Egger’s Her Right Foot (Chronicle, ages 8 and up). I can’t wait for my STEAM class to begin on Friday so I can share it!!     Eggers begins by read more »

Planting Hope- The Seed Sprouts

October 11, 2016

Once the story was written, Peg Gignoux began working her illustrative magic.  Peg Gignoux is a fabric artist in Chapel Hill with whom I’ve worked on many community outreach projects.  She excites children with color and design, collage and illustrating. read more »

Planting Hope–Watering the Seed

October 10, 2016

Planting Hope began with writing.  Weekly, I bounced between a group of thoughtful ESL middle schoolers in Bev Schieman’s class at Smith Middle School and a fevered enthusiastic crew at Roger’s Road Community Center.   Here’s how it worked. The read more »

Planting Hope- Planting the Seed

A year ago I began a children’s book with PORCH.  This whimsical allegorical story tells of a magical golden seed, Hope, and Terra, a dedicated gardener, who cares for her.  Together they unify a bickering garden.   The project began read more »

Send Forth the Healing Sun

August 13, 2016

I love Tony Bartelme, my brother-in-law & writer extraordinare. He and I have such gorgeous conversations about writing! This year HarperCollins Canada published his amazing story “Send Forth the Healing Sun,” a story about a doctor who teaches Tanzanians in read more »

Picture book gives local refugee children a chance to be heard

July 24, 2016

published in the News and Observer and Charlotte Observer, July, 23rd and 24, 2016 Last June, I had an amazing serendipity. At lunch I told a friend, “I really want to help kids write books that give them a voice.” read more »

G’ma Challenges

July 7, 2016

On my recent trip to Boston, Catie unknowingly confronted two of my inner issues in one short rest period.   First, this G’ma gets tired! I’m constantly reminded when I visit that child raising is an endeavor best accomplished by read more »