Thursday, December 18, 2014

Making A List and Checking It Twice



Merry Christmas everyone! Are we all ready? I must say that I am. This year, not sure why, I had all my decorating and shopping done, wrapped and shipped two weeks ago! And am so glad I did because it was already expensive enough to ship everything the cheapest way. If I'd waited much longer, I'd be paying double just to get things there on time. And when all your relatives live far away and you have to ship every single gift...it pays to force yourself to get organized and done in good time. So I'm giving myself a big pat on the back this year. Just hope I didn't forget anyone?

Have you ever done that? Forgot to get someone a gift? I have never actually done that but have NOT gotten someone something who got me a gift. That is not a good feeling. You wonder...should I run out and get something? And if I do, will they think I only did it because they got me a present? Who knows what the right answer to that is. This year I had a friend get me something but I hadn't gotten her anything. I decided to let it be and just enjoy the fact that she thought of me! I'll just make sure to reciprocate next year. No clue if that's the right way to handle it or not but I know she's ok with that.

I read something the other day, I think it was in 'Miss Manners' column that this person is fed up with people giving her lists of things they want for Christmas. She wondered had all the magic and wonder of Christmas gone away? What happened to people going through the joy of opening a gift and not knowing what was inside? I have mixed feelings
about that. I do love to be surprised by what's in the package. However, it is so much easier to shop for someone who gives you a list!! Especially when you don't know what they have, like, or need. I must admit though, that it irks me when I get a list from someone and I didn't ask for it! To me that's awfully presumptuous.

For me it really isn't as much fun to open a gift that you know exactly what's inside. We used to have a relative who used to send us kids the same exact thing every year. I was appreciative but have to admit, I tried to open that gift first because it just wasn't exciting! I loved this relative dearly though and did like getting a new pair of hose and $20 each year, it just wasn't that fun to open.

So how do you feel about lists? Do you like buying off them or do you like to ignore and get them something they aren't expecting? And do you like opening a gift that you already know what's inside?

Even so, I hope that everyone has a delightful, safe, fun and magical Christmas! Enjoy the moment and I'll see ya in 2015!






Thursday, December 11, 2014

Spotlight on Children's Author, Bill Smith

Well did you all think I ran away? Actually, sometimes I thought about it so I could escape the crap going on with AT&T. Our internet has been in and out, mostly out, for three weeks now and lets face it, our lives revolve around all things "internet" these days! Anyway, I won't bore you with all the details, I just wanted to explain why I haven't updated my blog in awhile. But hopefully the nightmare is over and I can get back to business!

Today I'm honored to introduce you to a new children's book author, Bill Smith. He has just recently released his first picture book, Sue The 'Mingo'. This is such a cute and creative story, I wanted all of you to know about it.

I asked Bill a few questions to help us get to know about him and his book a little better:


I understand that it was your daughter’s love of flamingo’s that possessed you to write Sue the Mingo? Can you tell us a little more about that?

Our daughter loves flamingos. When we first took her to the zoo, they became her favorite animal!  She loves pink.  When she was little she would call them ‘mingos ( and since then, so have we, still today!)

Do you have pink flamingo’s in your yard?

We currently have one 6 ft tall inflatable flamingo in the front yard, and about a dozen or more in the house (including a large metal one that is in the living room.


What made you decide to have Sue the Mingo change her colors throughout the story?

With regard to the story, my intent was to target preschool and early elementary kids, so learning their colors is an important lesson that I felt we could help with in a fun, entertaining way.


Did you take any classes or anything to help you become a writer?

I have a degree in Business Administration, so the only formal writing education that I have came from Southeastern.  I think it’s important to use your imagination like when you were a child; don’t limit yourself.


Have you written anything else?

This is the first project that I have actually published.  The second Sue story is written; “Sue The ‘Mingo Visits Mardi Gras”;  hope to get it published at the first part of 2015.  (we hope to make this a continuing series, letting our ‘Mingo’s imagination take us where she will!);


Where can people find your book?

The book is available at our website, www.suethemingo.com, on eBay, at Cavalier House Books in Denham Springs (on their website as well), Persnickety in Zachary, Oak Point Supermarket in Watson and Central, and at Saunders Lux Jewelers in Bocage.


Sue The 'Mingo' is a 32 page, large format (8 1/2" x 11") paperback, full color, and is perfect for kids preschool through elementary age. The story is about a flamingo named Sue who wonders what it would be like if her feathers were colored anything but pink! Sue was inspired by my daughter. She has always loved flamingo's. (She actually has always loved pink, and after our first trip to the zoo, fell in love with the pink birds, which she called "mingo's!") So at our house, "mingo" became a word that we use very, ver often! Sue uses her vivid imagination to dream, therefore we chose "Dream Like A Mingo" as our motto.



W. J. Smith, Jr. lives in Denham Springs, LA with his wife and 2 children. “Sue The ‘Mingo” is his first book in a continuing series. (The second, “Sue The ‘Mingo Visits Mardi Gras” will be out in the spring of 2015.) Graduate of Southeastern Louisiana University, bachelors degree in Business Administration.  A life long writer, motivated to action by my family. Bill enjoys the marketing and promotion of this book almost as much as writing it.




Thank you, Bill for letting me feature you on my blog today. I wish you a bright and rewarding future with Sue The 'Mingo' and all of Sue's new adventures!