What an incredible trip to Ft. Wayne, Indiana this week!
I arrived on Monday evening and spend time visiting with old friends from high school and catching up on current life events. I was staying just done the interstate from their home at a very comfortable Extended Stay America hotel. With a kind staff, clean room and comfortable bed, I had a great nights sleep before my presentations.
I arrived at Canterbury School and from the moment I entered the building, I knew that this school was unique. Colorful, cheerful and mindful of every student in it’s Pre-K thru 12 curriculum. This school did not feel like a school but rather a magical destination for higher learning. (Yes I do feel there is a difference between the two.)
The staff was some of the kindest I have ever been blessed to engage with! It would be impossible not to feel the love and care for not only the students but for everyone at the book fair.
When the time came to present my back-to-back presentations, I went all in and hooked the students in the amazing world of creativity and left them even more excited to peruse all of the titles on hand for purchase and reading. I was asked to bring twelve copies of Barney & Lexi and only two remained as I prepared to leave.
As I left I was asked if I could return today and do an impromptu presentation and I would have been all over this opportunity had it not been that I had to return to work today! The event organizer, Beth, who is amazing, requested my work for next years book fair and I am most grateful to return for that!
A bonus was meeting a district representative for Barnes & Noble who asked if I ever did book tours before taking a bookmark and business card and asking if he could pass my information along to a few others withing the company.
As I am now back home in southern Illinois, I am so very grateful for the opportunity to bring value to others, engage with some incredible people and discover gifts and blessing all along the way. What ever you are dreaming about, STOP DREAMING AND GO DO IT! You will be so glad you did!!
In 16 hours I will be heading to Ft. Wayne, Indiana for my second author event within a week! I will be traveling to Canterbury School for a back-to-back set for the Canterbury Book Fair. This is going to be an amazing event and photos will follow the days events!
Until then, allow me to share the amazing time spent in Flora, Illinois at Flora Elementary School! This was a great day spent with some amazing students and super staff! The day was all about value!
As Christmas draws near, I am reminded daily that it will be my first holiday season single since 2001. I must say I am alright with that thinks in part to three amazing sons and some friends that have been great to me over 2011. As I sit at my computer I wonder a lot about my future and just who will be in it. If 2011 has taught me anything, it is that I can take the hits, I have too. I think we all have to in our own ways? I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss having a woman in my life, good or bad, we men need that social connection from the opposite sex. This time around, I find myself being particularly selective, not because there is simply no one knocking at my door where I live, but rather because I really have been a selective type of guy. I refuse to settle for someone simply because I am getting a slight bit lonely around the holidays. Since my separation early this year, I did ask two women out, and in both occasions I was met with less than mature responses to which I crack a smile and simply say “On and up”. I want mature, I want funny, I want responsible, I want sweet to look at, I want goal oriented, I want faithful, I want open and honest,I want a friend, a mom and (down the road) a wife.
I can say that I learned more this year than I have in any years past. I learned just how resilient I was. I learned that I could live out of my car, I learned that I could finish my fourth novel. I learned I have a handful of great friends. I walk into 2012 with three amazing sons. Three young boys who fill me with hope and a fresh outlook. It is because of my sons that I can not and will not settle for the first thing to come along. They deserve better and so do I.
I am getting so tired, so it is time to hit the sack. But I will say, I will find that certain someone out there, I will sell my stories and they will be hits, my sons will be happy and so will I. And to that almighty thing we all call ‘Life’ I say, “I will wipe my blood away and live to fight another day…”