Archive for the ‘ libraries ’ Category

We had a fun time last night at the North Regional Broward College Library with an author visit and craft. This is by far one of the best children’s libraries I’ve ever visited! The book selction is huge, and the Children’s Library is so inviting. Myrna Steinberg started a craft and story program years ago here, and it has really taken off. The children were so well behaved and curious. And wow, they are knowledgeable about the rain forest! They learned about Lilly Badilly and the process of making and illustrating a book. After the program we made butterfly mobiles. It was a lot of fun, and I’d love to go back sometime for another visit!


A special thank you to Children’s Librarians Myrna and Michelle and to Tina Valant and Max, the Reading Dog for referring me!

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Even if you are not planning a trip to India in the near future, if you are at all interested in this fascinating country, read my review of DK Eyewitness Travel: India. Cick here. The Illustrations and photographs are unbelievable!


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Kids are out of school for the summer, but that does not mean their brains need to turn to mush! In addition to checking out a good book or DVD, libraries offer many special programs over the summer for kids of all ages.


  • Summer Reading Clubs – Win prizes depending on the number of books you read over the summer
  • Story time for tots
  • Author Visits
  • Family Night
  • Nursery Rhyme Hour for little ones
  • Music Programs
  • Arts and Crafts
  • Bookmark Contest
  • Drawing Workshops
  • Write and Illustrate Your Own Book
  • Summer Interactive Theater Programs
  • Dance Parties
  • Summer Movies
  • Science Programs Complete with Experiments
  • Etiquette Programs
  • Clown Visits
  • Writing Workshops

Libraries are an Amazing Resource!

Take Advantage of All Your Library Has to Offer!

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I was recently interviewed for an article on WE Magazine about what it is like working with my daughter. It was published today. Click here to read it.

While you’re at it, check out the current issue of WE by clicking on the photo below. There’s a lot of great content here with business, travel, tech, lifestyle articles and more. It is a pleasure to read! And no, you don’t have to be a woman to benefit from reading the publication.


Thank you to Heidi Richards Mooney, Publisher and Editor-in-Chief at WE, for sharing our story with the world and for providing excellent content for women in business.

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Celebrations are what life is all about. The milestones of life are what we remember as we get older and graduation is one of the most important. Here are my favorite ideas for graduation gifts for every age from least to most expensive:


Elementary School

  1. Wall Map
  2. A Party with Friends and family
  3. New Bicycle

Middle School

  1. World Globe
  2. Cell Phone
  3. Special Trip (NY City?)

High School

  1. Digital Camera
  2. PDA (iphone?)
  3. Laptop Computer


  1. Brief Case
  2. Nice Watch
  3. Car

For every age, a scrapbook with photos and personal treasures is a great gift as well. When all else fails, you cannot go wrong with money as a gift!

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Some children (and adults too) are under the impression that “could of” and “should of” are two correct forms of speech. It is never correct to say “could of” or “should of” – NEVER.

education clipart

This is very wrong:

“I could of been a millionaire, but I never did anything to earn that kind of money.”

“I should of been more grateful when she gave me that great book.”

This is correct:

“I could have been successful if I were not so darn lazy.”

“I should have sent a thank you note, but I simply forgot.”

So tell your kids now about this, and the you’ll never have to say, “My child could have been a great writer if only she knew about correct forms of speech.”

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Online Contests, Sweepstakes, Freebies - Contests for Moms – This extensive website was created by Amanda Compton in 2003. What started out as a hobby has turned in to the leading contest & sweepstakes site for moms online! She offers an expansive list of contests and sweepstakes available for moms everywhere in the world. So if you are a contest junkie, this is the place to go!!! In addition to contests and sweepstakes, you will find parenting articles, giveaways, Holiday ideas, recipes, crafts, safety info, everything for babies and much more. I got addicted to the site when I found and kept on clicking page after page. She has 3 blogs on the site, the buzz blog (parenting crafts, frugal tips & more), the contest & sweeps blog, and our very own mom blog – Petite Mommy, where Amanda openly blogs about her daily life as a home business mom/ small town mom. Do check it out! –  I am all for websites that promote education, and here is an excellent site. The creators of Young Pupils set out to give parents the tools they need to ensure their kids get the best education possible. They know that the first 8 years of a child’s life are extremely important to their future development. There is a blog on the home page with informative, well-written articles, info about homeschooling and links to other important educational websites. It is an uncomplicated website (Yeah!)  and easy to use, something we can all appreciate.

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I received an email today informing me that it is Thank You for Libraries Day. (By now I am sure you’ve heard of all these obscure holidays that are listed on many different websites). Some are completely odd, such as Walk on Your Wild Side Day or International Aura Awareness Day. Who makes up these holidays anyway?

I’m not going to argue with Thank You for Libraries Day, because it really makes sense. I have been reading that library use has gone way up in recent months due to the economic downturn. Families are visiting libraries more for free entertainment. They can check out books and movies, rather than buy them and they can take advantage of the many free programs available at libraries for children. People who have recently lost their jobs are flocking to libraries to use the countless resources that can help them in their job searches. Some Americans who have experienced significant financial losses have actually cancelled their home internet and cable services (which can cost over $1,000 per year) and use library computers instead.

And for all these people, there is just something comforting about being in the library. You go in there, look around and see all those perfect shelves of colorful books just waiting to be absorbed. People are whispering. Young children are giggling at the illustrations in a silly story book and the librarians are smiling at you asking if you need help.

At the very least, if we cannot thank a library every day, we should at least be grateful for having one.

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Once more I am appalled at the risks drivers take on I-95, weaving, speeding, tailgating and recklessly changing lanes. How is it possible to not have fear for your life on that highway?  I always tell my husband that he should design a car for me so that I can drive in the fetal position.

Given the fact that every cloud has its silver lining, crazy drivers inspire me. I love to imagine where they are going in such a hurry, and what it is that they could possibly do for a living, having such low IQs. (I have to the conclusion that people who drive like maniacs, cut people off and have no fear of crashing cannot be intelligent.) What a wonderful idea it would be to write a story with the main character as a reckless I-95 driver.

I must try that and get back to you.

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I often write about what inspires me to write. The best inspiration, no doubt, comes from personal experiences and daily observations. I find that that’s what children write about too – stories about their lives or experiences they’ve witnessed. I’ll let you in on a nutty habit of mine (and now my daughter’s) that has really helped both me and my daughter get more creative when developing characters and stories.

I categorize people.  Okay. I admit it. This sounds rather odd. But it is very entertaining. It doesn’t hurt anyone. And frankly it encourages me to be more observant. The more observant I am, the more inspired I will be to write.

“Exactly what does categorizing people mean?” you ask.

Well, when I see people on the street, interact with others in public places or listen to a story about a person, I put that person into a “category.” Essentially, everything in the world can be categorized. When you read my list below you will realize that you too can relate to categorizing. Here are 50 of the many categories I have created. (Keep in mind that I live in Miami, so you may or may not find all of these types in your neck of the woods):

  1. Senior citizens who ride old fashioned bikes (no gears) with baskets and are slim but with over tanned, saggy skin (“leatherettes”)
  2. Young moms who drive SUVs like aggressive maniacs
  3. Women smokers who reek of cigs and have deep voices and chronic wet coughs
  4. Children who stand up in grocery shopping carts and throw temper tantrums
  5. Parents who do nothing about their kid’s obnoxious behavior in public places
  6. Men who shave their heads but always have facial hair
  7. People who cannot communicate well both orally and in writing
  8. Nurses who are morbidly obese and who also smoke
  9. Old ladies who get their hair done once a week at the salon and never wash it themselves in between (head rot!)
  10. Men who are with their wives in public places and are way too obvious that they are checking out other women
  11. Cute, friendly old couples who go together like peanut butter and jelly
  12. Couples who have been married for years but don’t seem like they know each other and don’t go together well
  13. Ultra conservative moms who don’t approve of Grandpa Willy’s Farting
  14. Young men who drive fancy cars and always look around to see who is noticing their wheels (who cares!?)
  15. People with no sign of having personalities (boring!)
  16. Artsy young people who deface themselves with oddly colored hair, facial piercing and tattoos and then get furious because others are looking at them (like they are shocked people are looking)
  17. Men announcers on TV and radio who yell!!!!!!
  18. Bank tellers who are so unfriendly I want to slap them
  19. Grocery store cashiers who comment on what you are buying and what you will make with the ingredients when you get home
  20. Grandparents who brag about their grandchildren to the point where it is embarrassing
  21. Ultra religious people who smile creepily while standing in parking lots giving away brochures almost no one wants
  22. Women who put on makeup while driving
  23. Ultra sensitive disc jockeys
  24. Adults who have never voted in a presidential election but have strong opinions about politicians
  25. Women who complain incessantly about their husbands
  26. Husbands who tune out their wives most of the time
  27. People who are addicted to Starbuck’s or Dunkin Donuts Coffee and drive to their local store several times per day to get their fix
  28. Down-to-earth rich people who do not act like or ever mention that they are rich
  29. Cheap people who talk about how expensive everything is all the time
  30. Wealthy, superficial men who only date younger women for what they look like
  31. Overachieving students who are not ultra smart but work extra hard and do very well
  32. Women who are addicted to online dating but are not really looking for love, rather they are only looking for someone rich to take care of them
  33. People who you’d never think would (but actually do) drink alcohol from tiny bottles on their way into the office and toss the bottles on the ground in the parking lot at work
  34. People who find something positive in everything and everyone, no matter what the situation may be
  35. People who find something negative in everything and everyone, no matter what the situation may be
  36. Women who crisply iron everything they wear and it shows
  37. People with fake charm who make promises and never keep them
  38. People who are NEVER on time
  39. Nasty parents who leave dirty diapers on the ground in parking lots
  40. People who volunteer countless hours and then complain about it
  41. People who volunteer countless hours and never expect anything in return
  42. People with dusty houses full of excessive cheap knickknacks and clutter
  43. Tourist drivers who come to Miami and have no idea where they are going or how to drive here
  44. People who cannot get along with anyone
  45. People who can get along with everyone
  46. People who never read anything
  47. Avid readers
  48. People who do not need a lot to be happy
  49. Women who chronically have roots darker than the rest of their hair color (do they dye the roots to keep it that way?)
  50. People who do not fit into categories (Each one of these people is his/her own category)

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