The Runaway Schoolhouse Book Launch Night

It was a great night, and everyone seemed to have fun as you can see by the pictures I was supported by family and friends, and some of my Facebook friends surprised me by dropping in.

Thank you everyone and a reminder it is for sale as an e-book and you can rent it  which is an unusual option but one worth considering: http://www.emuink.ierunaway_schoolhouse_cover_Latest_151031

 

 

 

 

 

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maria and family (minus niall)

 

But there was someone missing who needed a hug, but he got plenty when we got home.

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Maria’s Stuff: Children’s story: Betty’s Do-whacky’s.

Betty is a Grandmother who loves inventing things.

“Gadgets, Do-wacky’s” she calls them.

Her inventions hang from the ceiling in her workshop.  Everything will be useful some day, Betty says. Especially, the wind powered dog walker and even the grass-growing timer.

Betty would love to invent a special car just for her.  A car, which will not collect great bumps and dents whenever she tries to park it. Until then, Betty cycles everywhere.

She is easy to find with her hair pulled into a high bun, which perches on top of her head like a small bird having a rest. Her eyes are large and dark brown. When she laughs, stars tumble from her eyes.

Baby-sitting and Bird Watching.

Betty was babysitting Jim.  She watched him carefully because, Jim loves trouble. Betty did not want any accidents.

Betty’s white cat Sourpuss was sleeping on the floor.

“W-h-a-t ?”  Jim, a very yoghurt faced Jim asked. He waved his spoon around. Dollops of yoghurt flew off his spoon and landed on Sourpuss.

“What indeed Jim!” Betty said. She stopped eating and put down her own spoon. Betty said,  “Well done, your first word. Say it again!”

“Whaaaattt?” he shouted.

Betty picked Jim up. She danced around the room hugging him. It was a hop, skip and jump dance over the toys on the floor.

Wouldn’t it be handy if I could just fly over all of this mess?  But I’d need a flying suit or gadget of some sort! Then an idea danced about in her head until a picture of it formed. “What a brilliant idea, – a flying suit.”

Later when a nice clean Jim was back in his own house, Betty began to work on her idea.   “How heavy could it be? ” Betty said aloud waving her hands in the air.  “I can imagine how it would feel to fly high with the birds. Splendid.”

Betty went outside. She looked up at the sky. “I need to study the birds for clues” she said to the blackbird sitting on her fence. He didn’t like the sound of that and flew off.  A floating feather gave her the answer.

“If humans had as many feathers as birds then they could fly couldn’t they?”

The Feather Hunt.

The group of children were fidgeting and whispering excitedly as they stood in Betty’s garden. Something great was about to happen.

“What do you want us to do?” the tallest of the children called Harry asked.  Harry was in a hurry to get back to his game boy.

“I need your help, please. To collect loads of feathers.”

“What type of feathers?” This was from Sara a very nosy little girl.

“Dog feathers,”her brother said digging her in the ribs.

Sara glared at him. “I meant what size? Big ones or little ones Betty?”

‘All sizes, types and colours, but only ones that have fallen off birds. You are not to chase the birds.’ She added this as she noticed Jonathon eyeing up a very fat pigeon waddling across the road.

They set off at a run. Feather pillows suddenly became featherless. The empty pillows were stuffed with the most unusual items, old socks (mostly of the smelly variety), sheep’s wool and Harry had a brain wave of filling the empty pillowcase with a cabbage from the garden.

Hen houses and hedgerows were searched. Trees were climbed and bird-cages were emptied. Betty found some feathers in the hedge where Sourpuss slept and she put them in a box inside her workroom.  She went to sleep that night dreaming of skies filled with flying children. Much safer than airplanes Betty decided before she fell asleep.

 The Flying Suit.

 

The next morning after a large breakfast of cereal, two hard boiled eggs and three slices of toast, all washed down with a pot of strong tea, Betty went to her workroom.

The sight of the large box stuffed with feathers, sitting at the door, was a surprise. Betty dragged the box indoors. She emptied it onto the floor. The feathers were all co lours and sizes, some were bright yellow, others were as dark as a lump of coal. Betty felt a tingle of excitement run through her. Taking her oldest boiler suit Betty began to cover it in feathers. She was no good at sewing so she was gluing them to the fabric. It was a sticky, tricky job.

At one o clock the back of the suit was covered in feathers. The wings were her next problem. Walking around her workroom she glanced up at the ceiling. There was the answer, – two old kites dangling above her.  Betty began to work again.

By nightfall Betty was hopping about with excitement. It was finished.

The suit looked strange but impressive. Betty wondered who might test it for her.

“I’ll do it.” Licking her lips and rubbing her hands together, she sensed an adventure about to happen.

Betty Goes Flying!

 

Betty woke the sun up. She pulled on loads of clothes, because, she was afraid the sun might forget to shine. On went her warmest jeans, thick socks, boots, two tee shirts, a huge woolly jumper and matching hat. Plonking her sunglasses on her head, she said, ‘I’m ready.’

Betty quickly loaded the suit on to her wheelbarrow. Pushing the barrow to the old barn in the field next to her house didn’t take long. She was huffing and puffing harder than any wolf blowing down a house. She looked about her for a moment or two.

‘How, and where, will I land?’ She looked about her.

The ground looked hard. The cows in a field beside her looked lumpy.

‘What I need is a nice soft landing pad.’ Betty opened the door of the barn and

smiled. Hay, lots and lots of hay! ‘I’d prefer to land with a bounce instead of a thud!’ She said making a giant hay bed in the field.

Her next job was to climb the ladder into the hay loft.  She looked from the barrow to the loft. It was a long way up. ‘Best have the suit on just in case I fall.’

Putting on the suit was hard. With a lot of wriggling and groaning, she managed it. Climbing the ladder was tricky. Her flapping wings kept getting in the way.

Standing on the upper floor of the barn Betty pushed open the upper door and looked out at the wide countryside before her. The sun, now awake and interested, was beaming down on her.  The ground looked a long way down.

‘I’m not too sure about this,’ she whispered.

A gust of wind came hurtling in through the doorway. The wind was singing as it neatly collected Betty on its way out.

She was tumbling along. Betty was flapping her arms up and down at a terrible pace.  She realized something important. It didn’t matter how fast she flapped her arms because it was the current of air, which was carrying her.

By now Betty was tired. Oh my, I need a rest, she thought. There was a huge roar beneath her. Looking down she saw a small airplane. I’ll take a lift on that, Betty thought and holding her wings by her side she dropped towards the plane.

Landing was a bit tricky and noisy as Betty kept shouting things like, “Mind my new wings you big galoot!” to all of the birds who came to watch. They were flapping about and getting in her way.

Finally there she was – sitting on the wing of the plane looking about her.  I wonder where my house is? Another question popped into her head. ‘How do I get back?’

The pilot couldn’t understand why one side of the plane was dipping slightly. The co-pilot could as he spotted Betty land. He was trying to speak.  His mouth didn’t work! He tried rubbing his eyes to make her disappear but it didn’t work. Betty was waving at him.

“There’s a granny sitting on our wing!” he spluttered.

The pilot chuckled, “What? A Granny on the wing, nonsense.”

But turning to look out of the window the pilot got a surprise. “Oh my.”

“What shall I do,?” the co-pilot asked.

“Ask her to buzz off, politely though, if she is like my own granny, we will be in trouble no matter what we say.”

He opened the window of the small plane and shouted in his most polite voice, “Excuse me. Would you mind, hopping off our wing and flying away?”

Betty stared at him. Was he stupid? she wondered. If she knew where to fly to then she would not be sitting on his plane. “Could you please tell me how to get to Ballytrickle?”

The pilot shouted back, “Two miles that way.”

“Thanks ever so much,” said Betty as she was sucked underneath the plane by a current of air. Turning towards the sun, which was hiding behind a cloud, Betty headed home. As she neared the barn she spotted a tiny toddler playing in his garden. She swooped down near him. He saw her coming and his mouth opened wide but no sound came from him. His toy car was made from plastic and very round. Instead of crashing on to its side, it wobbled for a bit. He started to cry!

“Sorry baby,” Betty said. The barn appeared before her. Seeing the giant bed of hay she aimed herself at it and closed her eyes. Landing was a very bouncy affair as she bounced from one part of it to another. She ran out of hay and rolled onto the ground. ‘Ouch!’ Betty sat up to look at the damage.  The left-wing was in tatters but Betty was in one piece.

“I did it!” She said to a bewildered looking cow. Then she put her suit back into the barrow and headed for home.

Time for an extra-large brunch, Betty might fly like a bird but she won’t eat like one, she thought.

“Rashers, sausages, egg and tea all for little old me,” she sang, as she walked. This was followed by an extra long nap.

No Monsters Allowed.

Jessie was hiding under a chair. A shadow was chasing her.

“The monster can’t crush me here,” she whispered.

“‘Yes I can.” He roared.

Jessie raced into the kitchen shivering.

“Come on Jessie let’s go to the park.” Granddad said. Bob, her dog,  began to jump and bark.

“Wait till I put my coat on, Bob,” Jessie whispered looking around, searching for the monster. She didn’t want to be crushed.  A tear rolled down her face. Bobs sloppy tongue licked it off making Jessie giggle.

Bob walked with Jessie close to Granddad and Granny.

In the park Granddad went to get ice cream. Granny sat in the sun.

Climbing into the playhouse, Jessie felt safe. Bob was sitting beside her so there was no room for a monster.

“Jessie are you ok?” Granny asked.

“Yes. It’s nice here, try it Granny!”

“I’d get stuck in the door. Then you and Granddad would leave me.”

Jessie peeped out. “Oh Granny, I’d never do that.”

Granny smiled, “You might not, but Granddad would”

Granddad walked up to them carrying icecreams. He said, “One for you, Granny, and one for me.” He scratched his head, ” Was someone else looking for an ice-cream?”

Jessie giggled. Climbing out of the pipe she said, “Me, Granddad.”

“Who is this me?”

Skipping over to him she said, “Jessie.”

Bob was drooling. Great lumps of blob were hanging from his mouth.

“Thank you Granddad. But Bob is sad,” Jessie said. She stuck her finger in her ice cream and Bob licked her finger.

“It’s ok Bob. I have one for you.” Pulling a tub of ice cream from his pocket Granddad placed it on the ground. Bob looked at Jessie.

“Eat it up Bob.” She said. He did.

Jessie noticed a shadow looming behind her.

“You are tiny. I could swallow you in one gulp,” the monster shouted. He was huge, blocking out the sun. Jessie began to shake.

Bob was barking. Granddad said, “Stop, Bob.”

Huffing and grunting Bob moved closer to Jessie. She bent down to him and sat with her hands about the dog’s fluffy neck.

Later that afternoon Granddad handed Jessie a packet of crayons. “I am going to draw fairies and pixies but not leprechaun’s. They frighten me.”

“But, you are not afraid of anything, even spiders.”

Granddad said, “Do you want to know a secret? I’m afraid of lots of things especially nasty leprechauns.”

“Why?” Jessie asked.

“They want to take me away but I have a secret weapon – it’s a magic circle locking them out.”

“What is it Granddad?”

Granddad said, “Love! Leprechauns don’t understand love because their world is nasty. They don’t have you, Granny and Bob to love them.”

Jessie thought about all the nice things the monster couldn’t understand.

Granddad showed Jessie his drawing.

She laughed. “You drew funny coloured shapes Granddad.”

“They are fairies sprinkling butterflies everywhere. What did you draw?”

“You, Granny, Mum, Dad, and lots and lots of Bobs,” she whispered.

“Who will we bring to the park next time?” Granddad asked.

Jessie smiled and said, “We will, Bob and me. But no monsters allowed!”

 

Maria’s Stuff: A question for everyone

A question to everyone regarding the children’s illustrated book  Doris and Maria are working on (featuring the Ogre Breeze)

Have you or would you buy a children’s book

1)  online

or

2) in a bookshop

 

Your answer would help me (Maria) and stop me dithering,

thank you.

Bob’s Diary: Hunting him down

After our meeting I went back to the wood.pic one in wood

Ellie says it is not the right wood, but what does she know she rescues people she doesn’t hunt ogres.

I know that he is big and there has to be a clue around  there somewhere.

There is it is: at http://mudpilewood.wordpress.com/

Children’s Story: Millie Plants Ideas

 

Millie loves to help in the garden.  “Squish, squash,” Millie sang as she jumped up and down on the seeds she planted.  She wore her favorite bright green boots.

Granddad said, “be kind to them Millie.”

“I am. See, first I dig a hole, then I cover them up with a blanket of soil. Then I make sure they are tucked in good and safe.”

Granddad said, “Jumping on them and shouting isn’t being gentle. If you are gentle surprising things can happen,” Granddad said. “Try it and see.”

Millie loves surprises. She decided to try being gentle to the animals around her. She sat on the grass whispering to Bob, (her dog) , Brandy (Granddad’s lazy cat) and a fat blackbird who sat on the fence.

Millie said, “Brandy I know you would love to catch the biggest mouse in the whole world.” He looked at her then went back to washing his paws.

“Mr. Blackbird, I know you will sing the best song ever.” The blackbird flew away.

“Bob you will learn to smile.” Millie said. “And I will plant my ideas in the garden to grow.”

Granddad looked at his garden. It was very neat, “but perhaps not in the vegetable beds.”

Millie went into the house to find ideas to plant.

She found a cupcake recipe. She folded it over and sprinkled it with sugar.

Outside in the garden she picked the sunniest spot in the flower bed. She dug a large hole. Millie pressed the folded recipe into the earth. On top of it she placed a red cherry. “I love cherries.”

In the house she found an old hat. “I love hats but you need a scarf,” she murmured carrying it outside. With a soft ‘plonk’ it went into the ground.

After their lunch of tomato soup and fruitcake Millie went to help Granddad with his digging.

By five o clock that evening she was tired. She sat on an old bucket and asked the blackbird. “Did you learn a sweet song?”

His answer was a sweet musical song. Millie smiled.

Granddad said, “I told you, being kind and gentle works.”

Millie went in search of Brandy. She discovered he had found and eaten her two chocolate mice. “Don’t be sick,” she warned him.

She went in search of Bob. She searched the whole house for him but could not find him.

“Millie, come and look at this.” Granddad shouted.

Down in Millie’s special flower bed she discovered a smiling Bob wearing a straw hat with a red scarf tied dangling from the brim. Bob was eating a large cherry cupcake. Granddad was sitting beside him on the grass minding four cherry cupcakes.

“Great work Millie. Try the hat on.”

She did. “You were right Granddad. Surprising things happen when you are gentle and kind.”

They sat wearing big smiles as they ate cherry cupcakes in the evening sun.

Children’s Story: Milly Plants Ideas

Milly loves to help in the garden. “Squish, squash,” Milly sang jumping up and down on the seeds she planted. She wore her favorite bright green boots with pink butterflies painted on them.
Granddad said, “be kind to them Milly.”
“I am. See, first I dig a hole, then I cover them up with a blanket of soil. Then I make sure they are in good and safe.”
Granddad said, “Jumping on them and shouting isn’t being gentle. If you are gentle surprising things can happen,” Granddad said. “Try it and see.”
Milly liked surprises. She decided to try it on her pets. She sat on the grass whispering to Bob, (her dog) Brandy (Granddad’s lazy cat) and a fat blackbird who sat on the fence.
Milly said, “Brandy you are to catch the biggest mouse in the whole world.” He looked at her then went back to washing his paws.
“Mr. Blackbird, you will sing the best song ever.” The blackbird flew away.
“Bob you will learn to smile.” Milly said.

Granddad asked her what she was going to do. Her answer made him smile.
” I will plant ideas in the garden to grow.”
Granddad looked at his garden. It was very neat, “but perhaps not in the vegetable beds.”
Milly went into the house to find ideas to plant.
She found a cupcake recipe. She folded it over and sprinkled it with sugar. She picked the sunniest spot in the garden. She dug a large hole. Milly pressed the paper into the earth. On top of the paper she placed a red cherry. “I love cherries.”
In the house she found a hat that belonged to her granny. “I love hats but you need a scarf,” she murmured carrying it outside. With a soft ‘plonk’ it went into the ground.
After their lunch of tomato soup and fruitcake Milly went to help Granddad with his digging.
When they finished she was tired.

Milly sat on an old bucket and asked the blackbird. “Did you learn a sweet song?”
His answer was a sweet song.

Granddad said, “I told you, being kind and gentle works.”

She went in search of Brandy. She discovered he had found and eaten her two chocolate mice. “Don’t be sick,” she warned him going in search of Bob. She searched the whole house for him but could not find him.
“Milly, come and look at this.” Granddad shouted.
Down in Milly’s special flower bed she discovered a smiling Bob wearing a straw hat with a red scarf tied dangling from the brim. Bob was eating a large cherry cupcake. Granddad was sitting beside him on the grass minding four cupcakes.

“Great work Milly. Try the hat on.”
She did. “You were right Granddad. Surprising things happen when you are gentle and kind.”
They sat wearing big smiles as they ate cherry cupcakes in the evening sun.

 Bob’s Comment – 100th Post should have been about little young me!

So we compromised – Here I am: Spring is here but Summer is coming

IMG_5954

 

Bob’s Diary: Party Sorted

Thanks Denise Esther and Jennifer for your suggestions,  I think the problem is sorted. See  Maria’s account below:

The Party Invitation Problem:

Breeze was  so excited, he  was jumping up and down. On the fourth jump he was frightened by a loud voice shouting. “Stop!  Breeze stop jumping now.”

He paused mid jump by clinging to the trunk of the tree closest to him.

He scowled. It was his best friend, Tulip, who happened to be a fiesty fairy.

Tulip pointed her finger at him . He landed on the ground with a loud whup!

Breeze said, “You are scary for a fairy.” He giggled at the rhyme.

“Huh, we sent our invitations a month ago for our Fairy Tea Party, what did I get today?”

Breeze puffed out his chest. “An invitation to the Ogres Afternoon Tea Party. It’s on the 12th.”

“I know. It can’t be. We are having our party on the 12th.”

Breeze scratched his chin. “Two parties, well…”

“Exactly we won’t have a full table, neither will you.” Her loud voice drew a crowd of onlookers because Fairies never lost their temper.

“Well then there is only one thing to do..” Breeze said.

“Cancel the Ogres party.”

Breeze shook his head. “No.”

“YOU will!” She roared, frightening the wind. It stopped, changed direction and raced away.

“No need, we will have one giant party.”  Breeze said.

Before Tulip could say anything. The crowd cheered.

Breeze smiled. “There you go problem solved. I need to go. I must tell the others to make some fairy cream pies.”

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I’m going to sneak in and watch the fun, I will post the report after the event.

Thank you,  Bob

Bob’s Diary: The Lighthouse Award.

We are all smiling (Kevin included,) because belsbror has kindly awarded us :

the-lighthouse-award

If you are looking for a short post that will put a smile on your face check out belsbror’s site. I enjoy his anecdotes especially: I like it Hot

The accompanying rules and guidelines for this award are:

  1. Display the Award certificate on your blog.
  2. Write a post and link back to the blogger that nominated you.
  3. Inform your nominees of their award nominations
  4. Share three ways that you like to help other people.
  5. There is no limit to the number of people that you can nominate.
  6.  HAVE FUN!!!

Three ways we like to help others people

1.  Training Ellie for search and rescue work.

2.  Volunteering as an athletics coach

3. Volunteering on a committee which might help others find or create work.

There is a fourth (Bob’s idea): to give cuddles to kids and help put a smile on peoples faces.

Those I would like to nominate are:

http://esthernewtonblog.wordpress.com/

http://lifein64squarefeet.com

http://letitcomefromyourheart.wordpress.com

http://patinspire.org

http://rubytheblacklabrador.wordpress.com

http://dcardiff.wordpress.com

http://gettingbitzyfit.wordpress.com

http://miartedoris.wordpress.com

http://lisalanserrose.com

http://friendlyfairytales.wordpress.com

http://rachelmankowitz.wordpress.com

http://autisticandproud.wordpress.com

http://advocatemmmohan.wordpress.com

http://hillsofherchastity.wordpress.com/

http://thosewhofeedthebirds.wordpress.com

http://colliesofthemeadow.wordpress.com

http://irenewaters19.wordpress.com

http://solopress2.wordpress.com

10 things Breeze can’t live without.

 1.      Fairy Cakes.. lemon cakes….cakes,….. any cakes

2.      Silly socks. Ogres always lose one of a pair of socks. Breeze has a sparkling pair the witches gave him. The socks giggle when they are lost. He looovvves his silly socks.

3.       Hair gel. Breeze has one hundred hairs on his head and he loves making the most of his few strands.

4.     Bubble gum. Breeze’s favorite story is about a boy who got trapped in a bubble and had an amazing adventure. Breeze keeps a giant packet in his house and practices chewing every day. (see Childrens Stories)

5      A giant poster of a politician, – perfect for shooting darts or custard pies at.

6.      A talking recipe book (with good manners). Breeze loves cooking but is slow to read

7.      A night light. Breeze does not like spiders.

8.      Breakfast, second breakfast, lunch, afternoon tea, dinner and supper.

9.      A hug. Ogres are very squishy and huggable.

10.     A dog to chase and play with (Bob visits often and comes back smiling, with icing sugar on his fur.)

Bob :

I'll do anything for jellies.

I’ll do anything for jellies.