Book Signing Event at Borders

Children's Gift Book Signing Event

December 19, 1-3 pm

429 South Associated Road
Brea, CA 92821

Cathy June | Merrily Kutner | Irina Mirskaya
Angela Waterman

Meet four children's book authors and illustrators
and have books personalized for you and the kids you love.
Lots of free activities and fun giveaways too!

~ Hope to see you there! ~


Orange County Children's Book Festival

Irina Mirskaya, illustrator of We Love the Company and I will be at the
Orange County
Children's Book Festival

Orange Coast College, Costa Mesa, CA
Sunday, October 3rd, 1:30 - 3:00

CM School Supply booth #19

Come by and say hello!


Pages: A Bookstore

Bring the little ones and join me for story time.
We'll read We Eat Food That's Fresh!,
sing along with the chef,
and make our own chef hats to take home too!

Monday, July 12th, 10:30AM
at the new independent bookstore

904 Manhattan Avenue
Manhattan Beach, CA 90266

See you there!

* * * Do you have children's books that you don't need? * * *

make room on your bookshelf
brighten a child's world
help a young man become an eagle scout

Ben Bravo, of Boy Scout Troop 65 is an Eagle Scout candidate. For a service project he is building a small library for a battered women and children's shelter in East Los Angeles called the House of Ruth. He's asking for new or gently used children's books for the ages of 0-10. Books written in English and Spanish are appreciated.

You can drop off your book donations at

904 Manhattan Ave Manhattan Bch., CA
until Monday, 7/12/2010, 11:30am

Chemers Gallery

17300 17th Street, Tustin CA
until 7/13/2010


Benjamin Franklin Award Winner 2010

I'm thrilled and announce that We Eat Food That's Fresh! published by Our Rainbow Press, is the 2010 Benjamin Franklin Award winner for the Children's Book & Audiobook Set category. "Named in honor of America's most cherished publisher/printer, the Benjamin Franklin Awards™ recognizes excellence in independent publishing. Publications, grouped by genre are judged on editorial and design merit by top practitioners in each field." Our Rainbow Press is a children's book publisher dedicated to enriching children's lives with quality books that promote self esteem, early reading and literacy, healthy living, and family values.

A simply edible book that is rich in colorful fruits and vegetables. Inspires all ages to have a taste of something new! --Produce For Better Health Foundation


Easter at Anaheim Farmer's Market

Come visit me and join the festivities!

Certified Farmers' Market
& Craft Fair

Thursday, April 1st, 12n - 7p

Noon-7pm Family Karoake

2-7pm Trackless Train!

4-6pm Free Activities include
Easter Bunny,
Easter Egg Dying,
Coloring Contest,
Karaoke and more!

12n-7pm I'll be there to read & sign
We Eat Food That's Fresh!
with activity ideas to encourage children
to eat fresh fruits & veggies


Moonbeam Award Arrived!

The official Moonbeam award and metal arrived!

We Eat Food That's Fresh!
was received the 2009 Moonbeam Best Illustrator Silver Award (#36), which I'm thrilled about, of course! It also received the Picture Book - Preschool Silver Award (#7). My congratulations to the author, Angela Russ-Ayon and publisher, Our Rainbow Press, for a job well done!

"The Moonbeam Children’s Book Awards are intended to bring increased recognition to exemplary children’s books and their creators, and to support childhood literacy and life-long reading."


IF - Brave

My Illustration Friday post for this week...

Max is brave, smart, energetic, loves puzzles,
and has the biggest smile in the whole world!!

mixed media on paper

Just in case you're wondering... I usually work in pastel, but I used a little different technique for this piece. The puzzle was partly created in Photoshop. I worked over it with ink and pastel. The background and boy are pastel and ink on paper. Then the finished puzzle was added with a little space between it and the background to give some dimension.


IF - Clumsy

Illustration Friday word for this week is Clumsy. Yep, that's me.

Two Scoops Deluxe
9 x 12
pastel on paper


Five a Day - We Know We Should, but How?

It sounds easy enough - eat five servings of fruits and vegetables a day for better health. But, the truth is, between the busy schedules of today's families and a myriad of not so healthy temptations everywhere, it can seem like an impossible task. Plus, if your family's anything like mine they'll just go for what's easy. For example, we have the most delicious oranges in the world growing in our own back yard, but do you think anyone would go outside and pick an orange? At my house, if there's a $4 bag of chips in the kitchen and oranges on the tree, the chips will be consumed in a day and the oranges would rot away. But if someone cuts up the oranges and puts them on a plate, they're gone in a blink! So, what do you do to encourage yourself and your family to eat five a day? Here are a few habits that have helped me and my family eat healthier.

Make it hard to eat the wrong foods:

I'm much better off if I leave the cookies, chips, candy, and ice cream at the store! I find it's a lot harder to give in to temptation if I have to make a special trip to the store, in fact I probably won't do it. And I make it a point to never, ever shop hungry!

Make it easy to eat the right foods:

It always pays off when I add 15 to 20 minutes to my grocery shopping routine to wash and cut up fruits and veggies that stay fresh in the refrigerator all week such as:

  • Broccoli
  • Cauliflower
  • Jicama
  • Celery, carrot sticks, radishes*
  • Cabbage - shred or chop
  • Lemon & lime wedges
  • Lettuce/leafy greens**
If a sign helps... whatever works!

These ones will last several days refrigerated after they're cut:

  • Tomato
  • Cucumber
  • Bell pepper
  • Summer squash
  • Peaches
  • Nectarine
  • Apricot
  • Mango
  • Watermelon
  • Cantaloupe
  • Citrus
  • Pineapple

From the book, We Eat Food That's Fresh!

If fresh fruits & vegetables are ready to eat, we're all much more likely grab some for a snack, to top a salad, or toss in our sack lunch. And if I have fresh lemon or lime sections handy, I'll squeeze them on salads, Mexican dishes, and in water or tea. When I'm approaching the end of the week, I'll use what's left of the cut up veggies in a soup, casserole or stir-fry. We don't often have left over fruits, but they can be used in a smoothie with bananas and yogurt.

Get Kids Involved

When children take part in the shopping and preparation of their food and they'll be more interested in eating it too.

From the book, We Eat Food That's Fresh! ***
  • Even small children can help wash fruits & vegetables, place them on a platter, or stir a salad or dip. Make if fun!
  • If they're old enough to write, have them make a shopping list of new fruits & veggies that they'd like to try. Or, cut pictures of fruits and veggies from grocery adds, then let little ones past them on a list.
  • Children can help find the foods on their list at the grocery store produce department.
  • Take the children to a local U-Pick farm. Or, if you have access to a garden, let them take part in planting, watering, weeding, and harvesting. It's a wonderful experience for a child to watch a seed grow into a food bearing plant!
  • And, of course, I recommend that you read "We Eat Food That's Fresh!"*** with kids at home, in the classroom, and play the CD with them so that the catchy tune will ring in their ears, "...try something new!"

Do you have any tips of your own? Please share!

* Carrot & celery sticks and radishes are crunchiest when stored covered in water in an airtight container in the refrigerator.

** Fresh lettuce tip: wash lettuce leaves, allow to drip dry in colander, then tear into bite size pieces. Place in airtight container, put a couple of paper towels on top of lettuce, seal and store upside down in the refrigerator. You can also store in a zip lock bag.

*** We Eat Food That's Fresh! Picture book with song CD: A whimsical chef introduces young children to fun food experiences that stir up their interest in fruits and vegetables. More about We Eat Food That's Fresh!