TEDx & SCBWI

In one week, Lynden and I will be on our way to Columbus to sit in on TEDx hillard. My good friend, Coyte G. Cooper PhD. will be speaking at TEDx for the first time. In a seminar of positive mindsets and elevated focus for achieving success. I am proud to support Coyte in what will be the first of many presentations given at these events. I’m proud to have spent the last year and a half learning from Coyte and taking my own success to an entirely new level!

Part of that level has been seeing signs everywhere as I work hard to succeed. Today, one sign revealed itself! As you know, I will be presenting to the SCBWI in Chicago September 14th. This is the largest organization for children’s book writers in the country and hand down, so very generous. I was informed that as part of my presentation, the SCBWI will be renewing my membership for next year! That’s $100.00, just for showing up and doing what I love doing! Success is not always a dollar in the hand but reward of value given at the climax of hard work paying off.

What ever you are wanting in your life, chase it and make it your reality. You really can have what you want!

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A Breakdown, A Show & A Great Memory

So, my Jimmy broke down the day before leaving for Moline, Illinois with Ethan and Rylen. I didn’t let that get in the way of traveling to Moline and watching Laurie Berkner perform an intimate solo event. I had rented a car prior to the breakdown and the only things keeping us from going was, well, nothing!

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When we arrived at the car rental, our car was not finished in the wash area. This was not a bad thing, because we were given an upgrade to a small SUV for the same price. The vehicle was wonderful and gave us the room we needed to make out trip comfortable.

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Five hours later, we arrived in Moline and after checking in, hit the pool for two hours. Then it was time to simmer down from our day and it was not long before Ethan and Rylen were out like lights. It was then time for me to get some work done. Being Tuesday, my weekly column was due and that meant it was time to get it done. With Ethan and Rylen asleep behind me, I sat at the table with a small lamp and wrote my column and got it sent off before turning in myself.

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We woke to the sound of rain hitting our windows. With our venue being outside, I got on the email with Laurie’s assistant and COO of Two Tomatoes Records, Katie, and was told that the show would be moved inside. With that reassurance, we made our way across the street and had breakfast at the local Denny’s before filling up and heading into Bettendorf, Iowa for an afternoon at The Family Museum.

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I must highly recommend this museum for children! Colorful, entertaining, educational and hands on, The Family Museum, at a cost of only $8.00 per person, is worth its weight in gold for the value it gives and the memories you will make!

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It was then time to return to Moline and its amazing historic district. The Laurie Berkner show was being held at the historic, Deere-Winman House and the intimate performance was being held on the side lawn. The beautiful grounds led up to the breath-taking home, built in the 1872 and looking just as great as it likely did then.

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As we approached the side lawn, we heard Laurie’s music, we all assumed it was being played over the speakers for visitors as they awaited the show. However, Ethan and Rylen froze in their tracks as they came around the corner of the house to find Laurie standing on the stage in the middle of sound check.

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The time at Deere-Winman was for Ethan and Rylen, but I was humbled to be invited to bring copies of Barney & Lexi to the show and leave with Katie. I left copies with her and picked up copies of Laurie’s children’s book: We Are The Dinosaurs for Ethan and Rylen. They began reading their books as Laurie appeared and the show went underway for an amazing hour and half.

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With pigs on heads, beach balls bouncing around and children dancing and laughing, Laurie put on an impressionable show and left no one feeling left out. The weather held off and made for an amazing evening!

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As Thursday can, Ethan, Rylen and I climbed back into our rental and made the five hour journey back home to southern Illinois. Singing songs and talking about how much fun we had along the way.

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Friday would come and I would find out that my Jimmy issue was nothing more than a bad distributor cap and with a $50.00 replacement, she is now up and going great.

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As the weekend would come and go, I would send Lynden off to band camp at EIU for the week as he earned a scholarship to the collage camp and is having an amazing time.

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So, in the end, everything is just as it should be, great and plugging away. Remember, no matter what comes along, if you stay the coarse, you can make anything happen!

Two Choices

Monday and I could not be happier!

I only have to work Monday and Friday of this week because I am taking Ethan and Rylen to a Laurie Berkner concert in northern Illinois on Wednesday. All of my kids have loved listening to the Queen of Children’s Music since they were born and I am surprising my two younger boys with and amazing, live performance in a historic setting!

Monday and Friday, that’s all. Today was half over, I was on my lunch hour and my Jimmy quits on me and won’t start, halfway home on my lunch. I am blessed to get a ride home and able to call for a tow. I couldn’t call because my phone was out of minutes and I actually forgot it at home.

I had two choices sitting there, I could get upset, which would solve nothing, make nothing better and only hurt my mindset. My second choice was to be grateful that my event was already paid, the hotel was already paid and my rental car was already taken care of and take my boys on an amazing week adventure we would never forget!

What did I choose???

#2 All The Way!!!

It made for a crazy day because I hitched a ride back to the town where my work is and when my mother came to pick my up afterward, she locked her keys in her car and spent the next two hours, walking a lot, finding out how to get into my mothers home without a key and hoping that a neighbor downstairs from my mother was not dead. Don’t worry, she was just in a medicated sleep and could not hear us for some time.

Anyway, tomorrow Ethan, Rylen and I will begin our journey in our rental car and with us will be ten copies of Barney & Lexi! I will be swapping books at the show and taking two of Laurie’s book home with Ethan and Rylen!

Time to gather things up before bed, just remember, you always have two choices, get upset or get determined! One will take you nowhere and one will take you everywhere! I will post pictures by Thursday!! Have a great Tuesday!!

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