Saturday, June 23, 2018

Tea Party Time

My friends and I held a tea party this week featuring teas flavored with Young Living Vitality essential oils. I also baked cookies with lemon and orange Vitality essential oils.  About 20 friends attended and everyone had a lot of fun. 


What in the world are Vitality oils?  They are the twin sisters of the Young Living essential oils.  The difference is the Vitality line is label specifically for ingestion. That means you can cook and bake with them, put a drop in your beverages (Use only glass or good quality stainless steel containers for this.), put them in capsules to swallow, and/or drip a drop under your tongue safely.  They are realllllly potent though, as they are pure oils.  A little goes a long way.  When using particularly strong oils for the first time, like basil or oregano, you may want to just dip the tip of a toothpick in the oil and stir that into your dish.  Add more as needed, but with care.  You can't take it out once you've overdone it!  


I didn't have time to make sugar cookies from scratch, so I cheated and used Pillsbury cookie dough.  I added 4 drops of lemon Vitality to one batch and 4 drop of orange to the other.  They were quite tasty!

We used an assortment of teacups that my friends had and four types of tea.  You can see the directions on the chalkboard.

While half the group dined, the other half went to another room where I had set up a couple of oily DIY projects.  The two groups switched activities as they finished their first one.  The first DIY was a bath bomb crumble.  The picture on the right below shows combos of Young Living Essential Oils they might choose to scent their bath bomb crumble.   

























The other DIY was a chill-out roller.  They put a few drops of essential oil in the roller bottle and filled it with extra virgin olive oil.  Then they selected a goodie bag to hold their DIYs.

Everyone had such a good time, we're planning another one for the fall. 





#teaparty     #vitalityoils    #youngliving

#bathbombcrumble    #chilloutroller

Monday, June 11, 2018


This is my first full week of summer vacation, and I hit the jackpot.  In the mail today I received 3 books I can't wait to read and review.  I'll be in my happy place for a while!!

Look for reviews of these books by one of my fav authors, Clark Burbidge, and two new-to-me authors, Iain Reading and Carrie Morgridge. 

#clarkburbidge #iainreading #carriemorgridge 

#starpassagehonorandmercy #kittyhawk #curseoftheyukongold #thespiritofthetrail

What a cool way to beat Oklahoma's summer heat and humidity: reading under the AC!



Thursday, May 3, 2018

Warning: Don't Ever Look Behind Door 32

            I just read a delightful counting book, Don’t Ever Look Behind Door 32, your 3- to 8-year-olds will love.  Two children are the very first visitors at the magical Hotel of Hoo. Their host, Mr. Nicholas Noo, gives them the grand tour of this most unusual hotel while frequently reminding them not to look behind Door 32.  They view the occupants of each room and see them become more and more strange and unusual as they proceed toward the infamous Door 32. Will they get a peek inside?

The Australian-born author, B.C.R. Fegan


            B. C. R. Fengan spins this fun tale in lilting rhyme.  I love that he has gone beyond the usual 10 or 20 enumerated in most counting books. He goes all the way to the dreaded Door 32.  Click the link above to see other books this award-winning author has written.  

Lenny Wen calls Indonesia home.


          The illustrations by Lenny Wen help to heighten the mood of mystery in the eccentric Hotel of Hoo. From monsters to ghosts to elves to mini-giants, Wen’s eerie creatures are much more friendly than scary.  


            This charming picture book is one your littles will request you read again and again.  Want this story in your personal or classroom library?  Like this post, follow my blog, and leave a comment with your name to be in a drawing to win your own copy.




Wednesday, April 18, 2018

Happy Birthday Season, Garth

Garth Williams

Who doesn't love the characters in Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, The Cricket in Times Square and the Little House series?  They were all brought to life by none other than the illustrator, Garth Williams.  You can find his animal drawings in a dozen Little Golden books.  He illustrated 11 of Margaret Wise Brown's children's books.  He also illustrated books by Else Minarik, Jack Prelutsky, Byrd Baylor, Russell Hoban, and Charlotte Zolotow, among many others.

Williams was a master at drawing furry little critters.

Williams was born in New York on April 16, 1912, to parents who were both artists.  At age 10 he moved with his family to the UK. When  he was older, he studied architecture for a while.  Then he turned to painting and sculpture.  He became the headmaster at an art school. Later he returned to America where he illustrated for a short time for the magazine, The New Yorker. He was asked by Harper and Row to illustrate E.B. White's Stuart Little.  This book was such a hit he decided to become a full-time illustrator of children's books.


Garth Williams with his second wife

His successful career included creating the illustrations for the whole Little House series.  His oldest daughter, Fiona, was the model for Fern Arable in Charlotte's Web. He wrote and illustrated seven of his own books.  Williams estimated, at age 81, he had illustrated 97 books.


Williams had five daughters and a son from four wives. Later in life he moved to Marfil, Mexico and lived with a colony of expatriots.  In 1996 he died in his home there at age 84 and was buried in Aspen, Colorado.  


Check out the Facebook page that memorializes him, Garth Williams, Illustrator.

Drawing Deadline

Drawing for a copy of Jorie and the Magic Stones is at noon today. See my previous post for directions on how to enter. You definitely want this delightful story.

Saturday, April 14, 2018

Dragons and Drawing

I just finished reading a delightful children’s book, called Jorie & the Magic Stones, by Angela (A.H.) Richardson. I was drawn into the story from the beginning and could hardly put it down.

Nine-year old Marjorie, who prefers to be called Jorie, comes to live with her spinster Great Aunt Letitia in Mortimer Manor.  Shortly after her arrival she discovers a mysterious and very old book, The Flying Dragons of Varadwan. She learns the ancient past of Mortimer Manor and her mother’s ancestor, Maalog Doonan.  She meets a young friend, Rufus, who accompanies her to Cabtynthius, an amazing world of flying dragons and strange kinds of people beneath the tarn, deep pond, by her great aunt’s yard.

Interwoven between the chapters about Jorie and Rufus are the chapters about the dark world of Shyloxia and Lord Fodomalk, who can transform himself into a menacing flying dragon. He is intent on capturing the three magical stones Josie and Rufus are on a quest to locate.  Rufus’ tutor, Professor Schrinch, joins the evil efforts as well.

The momentum of the story is maintained from beginning to end.  Magic Stones deals with classic themes of friendship and good versus evil while tossing in lots of adventure and danger.  It’s an engaging story for fantasy lovers from middle elementary through middle school. The youngest readers may be challenged a bit with some of the vocabulary or the unique spellings of names, but I think they’ll manage it just fine with a little help.  It will be a good read-aloud choice, too.  When readers finish this book, they’ll be eager to follow Jorie’s adventures in Richardson's two sequels, Jorie and the River of Fire and Jorie and the Golden Key.

Author Angela Richardson is multi-talented, as she writes, paints, sculpts, plays guitar, has acted on stage, screen and television, and gardens.  Originally from England, she now calls Tennessee home. Her three sons are grown, and she has three grandchildren.

Drum Rollllllll - - -
Now for the drawing part of this post.  To be eligible for a copy of Jorie and the Magic Stones, first, "Like" this post.  Then leave a comment telling to whom and for what age you would like to read this book. Finally, click here and comment Like on my Pinterest pin of this book.

 I will draw and announce the winner on Wednesday morning, April 18.