#PPBF: Medusa the Rich

It’s the beginning of a special weekend. Today is Perfect Picture Book Friday (although Susanna Hill is taking a summer hiatus, you can still access her incredible Perfect Picture Book resource list here.Tomorrow is Will Write for Cookies with my very special guest, author Suzanne Williams. And Sunday is Father’s Day AND the first day of summer. Woo-hoo!

Today is also the first day of Kristen Fulton’s NonFicPic Week…a challenge to get all you nonfiction picture book writers…writing! Can you do seven rough drafts in seven days? http://www.kristenfulton.org/nonficpic.html

I just mentioned that tomorrow’s WWFC’s guest is Suzanne Williams. She’s the author of over sixty books for kids. And today’s review (even though it is not a picture book) is of her latest book in the GODDESS GIRLS series.

GG16 cover


Written by Suzanne Williams and Joan Holub Continue reading

Sunday Post: Road: Which One Will You Follow?

Jake at Time after Time has a Sunday Post Challenge and every week he provides a theme…this week’s theme is ROAD.


  The Road Not Taken  (1916) 
by Robert Frost

“The Road Not Taken Robert Frost


Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less travelled by,
And that has made all the difference.”

Children need a parent’s guidance as they embark on the road of life.

As parents, we also need to make a choice as to which road or parenting approach we will take as we raise our children.  Here are five simple tips:

  • Be consistent with your children…set guidelines and stick to them.
  • Be compassionate with your children…show them love and respect.
  • Teach consequences…children need to learn that for every action there is a reaction.
  • Communicate with your children…a two-way street of talking AND listening.
  • Connect with your children…participate together in all types of activities.

Speaking about participating in activities, have you ever tried creative writing with your children?  It’s lots of fun and will help strengthen their literacy skills and exercise their creativity.  I’m taking part in a little creative writing over at Susanna Leonard Hill’s blog.  It’s called Summer Short and Sweets.

This is week four of Susanna’s challenge…if you click on the link above, you’ll see that this challenge was to take a letter of the alphabet, possibly the first letter of your name, and think of as many words (nouns, adjectives, adverbs, etc.) that begin with that letter and then write a 50 – 100 word story.  You are not supposed to peek at the detailed instructions until you choose your letter.  I picked “V” since that is the first letter of my name (had I peeked, I might have chosen an easier letter)…and here is my submission:

Viscountess Vanessa Versailles, a virginal Venezuelan virtuoso with varicose veins, vigilantly clutched the valuable Venetian violin in the velvet valise and vaulted over vipers and violent voles, her out-of-gas veneered van parked in the valley behind her. Her view blurred by a veil of venomous vapors, Vanessa valiantly raced onward, vowing to validate her promise to the vacationers who were even now vacating their seats for the violinist’s Valentine’s Day performance. Is she racing in vain?

Why not give it a try…just visit Susanna’s blog and hop aboard the Summer Short and Sweets train…it will be a fun ride.  Then you can adjust the challenges for your children, depending on their ages.  Young kids can draw pictures to tell their story and have a parent or older sibling write the words.

What else can you do with your kids this summer?  For the price of a large pizza, some breadsticks and a liter of soda (that will only last a few minutes), you can have quick and easy activities that will keep kids busy and happy and learning till school starts…and beyond!  Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking is the book I wish I had when my kids were growing up.  Suzanne Williams, author of over 27 children’s books says, “I wish Show Me How! had existed when my own children were young.”  Clinical psychologist, Jodi Harap adds, “Ms. Kirkfield presents concrete examples and helpful recommendations that are sure to give parents a newfound sense of competence and confidence in their own abilities as well.”

I want to remind everyone that the book is now available for shipment to Canadian residents…please visit my website and click on the special PayPal buttons for Canadian shipment!  I’ve already mailed out two copies of the book to Canada last week…one to Bowmanville, Ontario and one to Regina, Saskatchewan.

Want more information about Jake’s Sunday Post?


And here are some other bloggers who are doing Jake’s Sunday Post:











Kids Are Heroes, Too! How Can We Help?

Kids Reach For Confetti

The catastrophic events in Japan occur…and we read about a young child who donates her allowance to help the victims.

A village in Africa is without clean drinking water…and we hear about a child who collects money so that a well can be dug to provide fresh water for children he has never seen.

Children often amaze us with their acts of selflessness.  Sometimes, they seem to see the bigger picture and are willing to do whatever it takes to accomplish what needs to be done.

I recently discovered a wonderful organization that focuses on recognizing these wonderful children and encouraging others to become involved in their communities and in causes that they believe in.

According to the Kids Are Heroes founder, Gabe O’Neill:

“Kids Are Heroes is a non-profit that empowers, encourages and inspires children to become leaders through volunteerism and community involvement.  We do this by showcasing and supporting children who are making a difference through their selfless acts of giving.

We teach children to follow their passions at an early age.  This will instinctively stay with them throughout their entire lives.

Kids are indeed heroes and each has the power to change the world.

To see how kids are making a huge impact and to see how YOU can become a hero, click on

Meet the Heroes

and then click on the Meet the Heroes tab.

Our kids are digging wells in Africa, helping orphans in India and building homes in Haiti.

They are recycling and cleaning up their neighborhoods, helping their local animal shelters and making life better for their neighbors.

And guess what?  They are ALL just like YOU!”

Kids Are Heroes is a grassroots effort…if you believe that it is important to encourage young children to contribute to the community and to the world while they reach out and help others, please visit the Kids Are Heroes website, find out more about this fantastic organization and help build the Kids Are Heroes Day Wall.  Show Me How’s brick is already there!  

I already donate a portion of Show Me How book sales to JDRF (Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation) and to www.Bessthebookbus.org, a family/children’s mobile literacy outreach program.  When I wrote the book, I intended to find three organizations that were child-centered in the areas of health, literacy and the environment.  I’ve been missing the third…and I believe I have found it in Kids Are Heroes!

As parents, we are responsible for helping our children become good citizens of the world.  Encouraging your child to take part in community service events, such as cleaning up a local park or play area, is one way.  Listening to your child’s ideas is another…children often have wonderful suggestions on how to make life better for others.  Kids Are Heroes was founded by Gabe O’Neill because his daughter, MaryMargaret wanted to help animals.

One of the cornerstones of Positive Parental Participation is listening to your children with respectful attention.  All too often when we are busy, we push young ones aside because we feel we have more important things to do.   After you read some of the stories of the child-heroes, you may change your mind.

Spend some quality time with your children today!  If you are looking for great activities to do with them, pick up a copy of Show Me How! Build Your Child’s Self-Esteem Through Reading, Crafting and Cooking.  Click on this link to my website and you will be able to purchase a signed copy at 50% off the cover price.  For only $22.50, you will have a tremendous resource of 100’s of easy craft projects and simple recipes and picture book summaries and parenting tips.   And if you want to buy two copies, each is only $20.  This is a value-packed book and a great gift idea for a parent, preschool or kindergarten teacher, nanny, babysitter, grandparent, daycare provider or early childhood education student.

“I wish Show Me How had existed when my children were young.”

–        Suzanne Williams, author of Princess Power series and over 30 other books

“What a lovely book! Parents will find inspiration in this delightful guide to planning activities.”

–        Katharine Holabird, author of the Angelina Ballerina series

“A valuable, timely and timeless book…it’s sure to be a family favorite.”

–        Sheila Glazov, author of What Color Is Your Brain

“Show Me How offers us a great tool to help our children become people of kindness.”

–        Mary Newquist, Assistant Principal of Our Lady of Perpetual Help Catholic School, Selma, TX

“This book is an incredible resource for families wishing to foster their children’s sense of self-worth.”

–        Dr. Jodi Harap, Licensed Clinical Psychologist, Chicago, IL

“SMH Is a well-planned learning tool full of engaging, educational and family-oriented activities.”

–        Peggy Hicks, MA, Special Education Teacher, Colorado Springs, CO


The summer has just begun…don’t let another day go by without this award-winning book by your side.