Articles for the Month of April 2017

Marie and Mr Bee by Margaret Welwood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Important life lessons from Marie and Mr Bee

In this wonderful children’s book we meet Marie, who is a lovely happy little girl who just happens to be in a wheelchair, and for me this is a very important element of this book and one which makes it extra special. Millions of children are in wheelchairs and yearn to be treated normally and they want to play the same as other children. Marie sets a shining example, she lives a happy full life, in a cabin in the woods and has some marvellous animal friends who she enjoys playing with.

Being a good girl she does all her household chores first, then she knows she can be free to meet her friends and play games with them.

However, when one day Mr Bee flies in and boasts that he doesn’t do any work, Marie begins thinking, why work, after all if Mr. Bee doesn’t have to, then why should she?

As the idea takes hold, it seems fantastic, however soon Marie realises that all her friends do important chores and can’t just play when she wants them too. Suddenly she starts to understand that although playing is fun, it has its place, everything people do is important, and everyone has responsibilities.

Then when Marie finds Mr Bee hungry and sad, the author uses Marie’s kindness and forgiveness to round off this lovely story by illustrating to children the importance of compassion, responsibility, and the wonderful power of friendship.

I read this enchanting and beautifully illustrated story to my grandson and he loved it. Not only is this a wonderful story but it opens doors to discuss potentially difficult things with children, like wheelchair use, and why it is important that they do their chores before play. And finally, who can resist making Marie’s blueberry pancake recipe which is at the back of the book.

About the Author: 

Great Aunt Lily taught me to read, my mother parked me in the book section of The Bay while she did her shopping, and my grade 12 English teacher encouraged me to write.

So here we are *several* years later . . . .

I have written over 100 traditionally published magazine and newspaper articles. I also edited a diabetes education guide that won first place in the reference category of the Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards (2010).

And I taught English as a Second Language for years with stories as a mainstay.

Now a new door has opened into Storyland . . . the world I’m exploring with my grandchildren. My first picture book for children, “Scissortown,” is the only one I know of that offers a choice of inside back cover. “Marie and Mr. Bee” offers a choice of last page.

I also like to encourage young readers and writers–my site features stories and art by children 7-12 years old. You may wish to check out some of their interesting and colorful creations.

A weekly storytime with young children as well as time spent with my grandchildren have made for some interesting discoveries about children’s literature. I blog about these discoveries and review my top picks on Goodreads and other sites.

Locally, I help adults improve their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills one-on-one. I also offer editing and proofreading services.

About the Book:Marie is a happy little girl who lives in a cabin in the woods, working and playing with her forest friends . . . until a not-so-busy bee entices her to neglect her work! Compassion, forgiveness, and a forever friendship follow.

By the following summer, Mr. Bee is too old to fly. But every night, Marie lifts her little friend onto her lap and reads to him from their very own storybook.

Marie uses a wheelchair, which is clear from the pictures. However, there is only one reference to the chair in the text–when she wheels the ailing Mr. Bee back to her cabin after his expulsion from the hive. Some people appreciate the fact that the disability is present without being the focus. Others are pleased to see someone with a disability in the role of rescuer.

Also available with Bible verse references on the last page, as Marie and Mr. Bee (Proverbs 12:14b Version).

Available from Amazon in Paperback https://www.amazon.com/Marie-Mr-Bee-Margaret-Welwood/dp/0993830277/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1492512393&sr=8-1&keywords=Marie+and+Mr+Bee

and Kindle format https://www.amazon.com/Marie-Mr-Bee-Margaret-Welwood-ebook/dp/B01IGA62UM/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1492512393&sr=8-1

and Barnes &Noble in Paperback http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/marie-and-mr-bee-margaret-welwood/1124963804?ean=9780993830273

Little Bunny’s Own Storybook by Margaret Welwood

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

A lovely inspiring story.

This is a lovely story, beautifully illustrated, about very happy Little Bunny. He loved his daily routine, the stroll down the path with his mum and dad, and best of all his visit to the library, where each day he picked a different book to read.

Little Bunny just loved getting immersed into the stories, he could meet animals from all over the world, face imaginary dangers, see people doing amazing jobs, and have great adventures all within the pages of a book.

However one day the library is closed, and poor Little Bunny is so sad. What can he do now, there is nothing which can compare to reading his stories, or is there…

What Little Bunny discovers is that you can make your own worlds if you try, with dramas, adventures, fun and danger in them, all you have to have is imagination, and pens, pencils, and paper of course. Also, when you have made up your own story you can read it to others for them to enjoy.

What a fantastic tool this book is for teachers and parents enabling them to inspire their children’s creativity, whatever the reading or writing ability of the child. I read this with my grandson and not only did we have great fun looking at the illustrations, but he was inspired into making up his own little story and enjoyed illustrating it too!

I would highly recommend this children’s book, not only for the hours of fun which can be had creating a story and illustrating it, but also because in doing so you are not only widening the child’s talents, but also giving them a mechanism for escape into another world.

About the Author:

Great Aunt Lily taught me to read, my mother parked me in the book section of The Bay while she did her shopping, and my grade 12 English teacher encouraged me to write.

So here we are *several* years later . . . .

I have written over 100 traditionally published magazine and newspaper articles. I also edited a diabetes education guide that won first place in the reference category of the Writer’s Digest Self-Published Book Awards (2010).

And I taught English as a Second Language for years with stories as a mainstay.

Now a new door has opened into Storyland . . . the world I’m exploring with my grandchildren. My first picture book for children, “Scissortown,” is the only one I know of that offers a choice of inside back cover. “Marie and Mr. Bee” offers a choice of last page.

I also like to encourage young readers and writers–my site features stories and art by children 7-12 years old. You may wish to check out some of their interesting and colorful creations.

A weekly storytime with young children as well as time spent with my grandchildren have made for some interesting discoveries about children’s literature. I blog about these discoveries and review my top picks on Goodreads and other sites.

Locally, I help adults improve their listening, speaking, reading and writing skills one-on-one. I also offer editing and proofreading services.

About the Book: 

The story here is told in verse
to help your child with reading.
Your child will find the words that rhyme
and follow as you’re leading.

This picture book for children between the ages of three and eight tells the story of a little rabbit who takes matters into his own hands when he finds the library closed for inventory. Little Bunny’s Own Storybook is a celebration of libraries, literacy, family, and the initiative and creativity of children (both human and rabbit).

Available from Amazon in Paperback https://www.amazon.com/Little-Bunnys-Storybook-Margaret-Welwood/dp/1988468035/ref=sr_1_1?ie=UTF8&qid=1492095785&sr=8-1&keywords=little+bunny%27s+own+storybook

and kindle format https://www.amazon.com/Little-Bunnys-Storybook-Margaret-Welwood-ebook/dp/B01MU5L3UF/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1492095785&sr=8-1

and Barnes & Noble in Paperback http://www.barnesandnoble.com/w/little-bunnys-own-storybook-margaret-welwood/1125748572?ean=9781988468037

 

At Home in the Pays d’Oc by Patricia Feinberg Stoner

 

 

 

 

 

 

People change, and Patricia’s husband Patrick, otherwise known as Himself, proves this by holidaying, and then buying a maison secondaire in the Languedoc region of France, after stating emphatically just after they met that he doesn’t like France.

This is a beautiful area with something new to admire around every corner, fantastic villages, breath-taking views, wonderful architecture, and gastronomy, whatever you like, it is here. However for confirmed urbanites Patricia and Himself, visiting this amazing region, enjoying the social life, and owning and renovating their second home in Morbignan la Crèbe was fine, as long as they can return to their London flat.

As we join Patricia and Himself on their French adventure, the real life dramas of being an expat in France open up to us, including ‘friends’ both English and French, the French system and the little idiosyncrasies which make living in this wonderful country such a challenge – sometimes. Of course we also share with them the wonderful events and meals they join in as part of the Morbignan community, and the friendliness of their French neighbours, well most of them…

Sometimes though we can find our lives changing just like that, other changes come more subtly, such as the ones which took place after a little stray brown and white dog, who came to be called Purdey came into their lives. Dog lovers will understand how important the needs and happiness of our canine companions can be, and so they found themselves spending more and more time in France.

The author Patricia, in this captivating book takes the reader on a voyage of discovery, a celebration of the years her and her husband spent enjoying their French home, both for holidays and all the time. Living a life others only dream of is wonderful but are they still living there? You will have to read this enthralling story to discover the answer…

About the Author:

Patricia Feinberg Stoner joined the Liverpool Daily Post as a graduate trainee in 1969. Quickly discovering she was a terrible reporter, she switched to feature writing and since then her career has revolved around the written word, as a journalist, advertising copywriter and publicist.

For many years she was international press officer for Granada Television, leaving to set up her own publicity business, The Good Word.

Now retired, she devotes her time to writing short stories and poetry (mainly humorous verse) which have been published in various print and online anthologies. She is the leader of the creative writing group Arun Scribes.

Patricia lives in West Sussex with her husband Patrick, who is currently writing the science fiction series ‘The Jabberwock Continuum’, and a lunatic Brittany spaniel who loves cats. She is also a volunteer with WADARS, a local animal rescue charity, and donates the profits from ‘Paw Prints in the Butter’ to their cause. She welcomes visitors to her Facebook page Paw Prints in the Butter and to her blog: http://www.paw-prints-in-the-butter.com

About the Book: This is the story of how a small brown and white spaniel turned the lives of two English holidaymakers upside down. Patricia and her husband Patrick are spending the summer in their holiday home in the Languedoc village of Morbignan la Crèbe. One hot Friday afternoon Patrick walks in with the little dog, thinking she is a stray. They have no intention of keeping her. ‘Just for tonight,’ says Patrick. ‘We will take her to the animal shelter tomorrow.’ It never happens. They spend the weekend getting to know and love the little creature, who looks at them appealingly with big brown eyes, and wags her absurd stump of a tail every time they speak to her. On the Monday her owner turns up, alerted by the Mairie. They could have handed her over. Instead Patricia finds herself saying: ‘We like your dog, Monsieur. May we keep her?’ It is the start of what will be four years as Morbignanglais, as they settle into life as permanent residents of the village. “At Home in the Pays d’Oc” is about their lives in Morbignan, the neighbours who soon become friends, the parties and the vendanges and the battles with French bureaucracy. It is the story of some of their bizarre and sometimes hilarious encounters: the Velcro bird, the builder in carpet slippers, the neighbour who cuts the phone wires, the clock that clacks, the elusive carpenter who really did have to go to a funeral.

 

At home in the Pays d’Oc is available from Amazon in Paperback https://www.amazon.co.uk/Home-Pays-dOc-accidental-expatriates/dp/0995746206/ref=tmm_pap_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1491749051&sr=1-1

and Kindle format https://www.amazon.co.uk/Home-Pays-dOc-accidental-expatriates-ebook/dp/B06XQLJDWN/ref=tmm_kin_swatch_0?_encoding=UTF8&qid=1491749051&sr=1-1