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Archive for the ‘Graceful Grey’ Category

Imperfect Action

Today was a massive FIRST for me and the My Color Friends Series! I dropped off 8 MCF sample books at a national NZ early childhood education company.

 I watched her face as she opened Graceful Grey, and she seemed pleasantly surprised.  She had slight smile while she was looking at the pictures, trying to quickly read the text.

Still letting it sink in.  It’s an amazing opportunity.

This past month I have been selling a NZ special edition of Graceful Grey to fundraise for a new building for our friends at the Hope and Joy Children’s Home in Nepal. We have had great responses! And we have about $500 USD to give towards their new building project! We will do another fundraiser in Oct and we hope to double our giving amount! Graceful Grey is doing her part and I am doing mine.

All printed book sales through us, the profit will go straight to the Hope and Joy Children’s Home! 

Hope and Joy Children's Home in Nepal

At our first fundraiser, a friend approached me and said she loved the idea of the books, she loved the look of the books and she asked if she could pass it along to her early childhood education boss. Her boss was open to the idea and today I briefly popped in and handed her a bundle of books. I was unprepared when she asked for a flier, but I got her email address and promised her one in the morning.

I have been learning about IMPERFECT ACTION–just do something, take action, move forward. I don’t necessarily need to wait til it’s perfect or “right”. Today was a good example, I took action. I fell my books still have a long way to go before the are ready to be marketed mainstream in NZ or anywhere! But I swallowed and called the boss once, texted twice and charged in when I got a 5 minute meeting.

When I met her, I asked what she knew about the books, and she said, “Oh that a friend had made a book with some travel pictures, is that right?”

I rambled through living in Nepal and then handed her a book. I watched her face as she opened Graceful Grey, and she seemed pleasantly surprised.  She had slight smile while she was looking at the pictures, trying to quickly read the text. Her smile encouraged me, and I continued babbling about something…I left 8 books in her hand, promised a flier tomorrow and got her business card with her email address.

She is going to offer them to her educators and put in an order.

I am blown away by this opportunity!  And I hope and pray that it can make a real difference for our friends in Nepal!  This is also a small (or maybe large!) launch of the MCF books in NZ.  Wow.

I am thankful. 

Using What’s In My Hands

We want to help our friends at Hope and Joy Home in Nepal rebuild their care and training centre after the tragic earthquakes this past April.  First they lived in a giant tent with family and friends until it was safe to go back home.  Their home was damaged, cracked and unsafe so they are now in temporary housing.  But they have just received land to be able to build an earthquake safe home for the children and ministry.

What do I have in my hands to help? I have the My Color Friends Children’s Book Series!  Using what’s in my hand, means bring Graceful Grey to New Zealand!  I just completed the final draft, uploaded it on CreateSpace and have ordered a few dozen.  Once they arrive, I hope to sell them to raise money for the kids and our friends at Hope and Joy Home. It’s not much, but it’s what I have.  We hope that a few kids books will transform into a new children’s home in Nepal!  We will need your help!

Graceful Grey, Asian Elephants at Work and Play in Chitwan, Nepal

Elephants in Nepal!

They have Hope.

They have Joy.

Now they need a home!

There will be more to come about our NZ Special Edition of Graceful Grey, Asian Elephants at Work and Play and our fundraiser this month, but for now if you’d like to give to Hope and Joy Home, please contact us!  And we will donate all the profit from buying a copy of Graceful Grey or a Book Bundle directly from us!

We are getting ready to launch our fundraiser and to invest in precious lives in Nepal!

Our Family’s Transition from Nepal to New Zealand

Transition is tough.  Our transition as a family of 5 moving from Nepal to New Zealand has been tough.  But it has also been refreshing.

Two months on the family farm out in the wop wops (some NZ lingo for the middle of nowhere!) was fantastic.  Reconnecting with Ben’s family– his mother celebrated her 81st birthday!, the kids rode ponies and motorbikes with their cousins–was full on family fun.  Three years is a long time to be away from family, but oh how we appreciate these days living ‘next door’!

We were emotionally struggling when we first came home.  The transition, the earthquake that devastated Nepal, re-adapting to NZ, etc.  We just need rest, a full stop.  And we received it in the beautiful rolling hills of the family sheep farm.

NZ Sheep Farm

Our Home on the Farm

We also went to a special week of debriefing.  It was incredible just to let the words bundled up in our hearts spill out.  It was safe, it was freeing, it was restoring. We were ready to move on from Nepal and establish ourselves in NZ.

About three weeks ago we moved to “town”.  Living with family was terrific, but we needed something to call our own, something to ground us here in NZ. A nest!  Finding the perfect house for the perfect price in the right neighborhood was  miracle–we feel loved!

The kids have started school.  It was harder for the homeschooling mom than them, I think! They are sick at home this week so I am catching up all the cuddles and quality time, while blowing noses and rubbing vicks on everyone.

And here we are, in New Zealand.

After three months, I finally feel settled.  Our nest is home.  We have a daily routine, we each have our roles and responsibilities and we are moving forward.  So the question is…

Is it time for the My Color Friends children’s book series to live again…?

I was shocked when my son’s preschool teacher asked me if I was still writing books.  I just stammered, “Maybe when we get settled…”

And then she added, “You should keep writing them, they are good.”

I blew off her comments then, ducked my head and ducked out of the class…but later it really did hit me.  Someone actually has read my books! Some one I didn’t know til just now.  Someone in NZ.  A professional in early childhood education and SHE values my early learning ebooks!  Wow.  Encouragement has filled my heart.

I just said I am settled, didn’t I?  So, maybe it’s time to start writing again.  I do have some ideas, I do have the time, I always have my family’s support.  Deep breath, I might be able to do it!  I am struggling with the idea of reinventing myself for a NZ audience or not…One step at a time.

Catch up with the blog, CHECK!

Update my author photo on a million sites, CHECK!

Update Graceful Grey for a Special New Zealand Edition and get it ready to print, CHECK!

It seems the My Color Friends book series is moving forward too!

Thanks for  journeying with me!

Rebuilding Nepal

I am so thankful for everyone who has given to our Sheltering Nepal rebuilding fund!  #HopeinHumanity

$1,000 has been raised which equals about 20 shelters built!  Each shelter can hold up to 5 families, that means at least 100 people have been helped through this giving!

I know many families are still suffering without shelter or food, but I am HOPEFUL that international neighbors and friends of Nepal are sharing their burden and doing more good than I will never know. Because we have seen such generosity, all the thousands of other people who are working hard to help Nepal, they must be making strides to.

Even though the rebuilding process will take time, the little moves we make forward together are life changing for those individuals involved.

I wish I had testimonies and stories to share, names and places of families being helped, but I don’t. And you know why? Because our friends are hard at work traveling and visiting those in need in villages.  They are tired, they are suffering through the heat of the monsoon and they honestly don’t have time to sit and communicate long stories to me…but I trust that lives are being changed! And when the time is right, I will hear those stories and pass it along!

Thanks for being a part of Nepal!  You can give or share our Sheltering Nepal fundraiser by checking it out on YouCaring.com. Click here to see the Sheltering Nepal fundraiser!

Please remember anytime you buy a My Color Friends paperback book, $5 will also go to this fundraiser for Nepali families!

Read more here: My Color Friends Book Titles

Help Build Shelters in Nepal Before the Monsoon Comes!

Let me begin by saying the BIGGEST THANKS to everyone who had read our stories, prayed for Nepal and has given so far! We are only able to move forward with YOU by our side!

Our Nepali friends (the ones that we have been bragging about!) in Hetauda, Nepal are now mobilized to build metal or tin shelters. Imagine a big piece of sheet metal wrapping around a frame to protect families from the monsoon rains. I hope to have pics soon!

1 shelter can house up to 5 families.

1 shelter costs about $60-100 for supplies

They ave a goal to build at least 60 shelters to house hundreds of people!

60 X $60 = $3600 USD + transportation costs = $4,000

Will you donate to shelter Nepali families?

The Monsoon is coming quickly in Nepal–sheets of rain for hours every day, until Sept…the focused building area is the hardest hit villages near the original epi-center, Gorhka, Nepal.

it is URGENT that shelters are built today!

please GIVE and SHARE. You can give through our online fundraiser here : Sheltering Nepal

100% of the donations will go to our Nepali friends who are organizing this project. They are all voluteers!

I am also Giving $5 from every one of our paperback books sold through us or the Shades of Grace Art Studio to thei sheltering project in Nepal!

Our 2 Year Color Anniversary!

Today we met with our Nepali friends and had a birthday party.  Such a great way to start our last week in the place we have called home.    As we are about to embark on our adventure to New Zealand, I am also celebrating the 2 year anniversary of publishing my first kindle kids book, White Went Around the World!  So I get two fun and wonderful celebrations!

Packing up our lifetime of memories in Nepal is a big task.  I remember sitting in our guest room late into the night learning about Kindle Direct Publishing and CreateSpace.  Those hours of searching the web and uploading my ebook again and again (with slow internet mind you) were worth it!

I have grown into this role as author.  And I look forward to the future that lies ahead in NZ–new possibilities, new colors, faster internet : ).  I am also very encouraged because in March 2015, I have officially made the same amount of sales as ALL of 2014!  Considering it’s only March, I feel I have a good thing going this year.

I have learned as a self-published author, momentum takes time.  It also takes effort (and fast internet), so maybe with little more time on my hands once we land in NZ, My Color Friends books can really take off!

Just in case you are wondering: our children’s paperback books best sellers are:

Graceful Grey, Asian Elephants at Work and Play in Chitwan, Nepal

Celebrating Elephants and memories of our home in Nepal!

On Safari in Etosha National Park Namibia, Children's book

Our memorable Safari in Namibia!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Real books, real places, real photos and a really fun adventure make for great learning in the hands of children!

It’s been a blast traveling and taking photos around the world and I am blessed that those photos have made great kids books.  The colors of the world to be celebrated in our house forever, and I hope they are celebrated in your house too!

Thanks for reading friends!

 

Many Thanks!

When you have a shop and some one comes in to browse and walks away with one of your books it is ‘more natural’ (if I may)…but the world wide web has blew apart the walls of that shop and anyone, anywhere–and I mean people who speak French and live in Africa–can buy my little book with one click.

It amazes me.

So thank you dear citizens of the world

for buying Graceful Grey, Asian Elephants at Work and Play.

I wish I could meet you in person, shake your hand, say thank you, smile and wave as you leave my leave my little bookstore.

I checked my book sales today and did a little playing on the web and discovered that Graceful Grey is actually on Amazon.com’s Best Seller’s List for large print! #36 to be in fact.  I will take that as another sign to keep moving forward with the My Color Friend Book Series!

Oh the internet!  Now…what to do next?

 

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