Absolutely Incredible Kid Day

Created by Campfire 19 years ago, Absolutely Incredible Kid Day was designed to honor youth. Adults and teens are asked to write, post, tweet, and tag (#AIKD) notes of encouragement and inspiration to the kid or kids in their lives.

When I asked other authors to take part in my random holiday blog this year, Cat Michaels jumped on this date. If you are lucky enough to know Cat, your life has been touched by her uplifting and positive messages and unwavering support. I would venture a guess that Cat is as sweet as the tea she drinks in the South!

Although today’s blog is departing from my usual structure of having an author pen a blog specifically for me to post, I ask you to visit Cat’s website, www.catmichaelswriter.com, to see what she has to say about this special day. While you are there, take a peek around her site and see for yourself what an inspiration she is to many!

About Cat
Before you go, here’s some info for you to know about Cat:

  • She started writing stories in fourth grade and hasn’t stopped since.
  • Cat earned an an M.S. degree in special education from the University of Kansas.
  • She builds on her teaching experiences to write illustrated chapter books for young readers of all abilities to develop imagination and critical thinking skills.
  • Cat’s books, Sweet T and the North Wind and Finding Fuzzy: a You-Decide Tale of a Lost Friend, can be found on Amazon and ordered from local bookstores. Watercolor illustrations by Irene A. Jahns help bring her wonderful stories to life. 

Let us hear from you.
What do you think of writing a letter to a special child? Let’s see your thoughts in the comment section.



The Picture Perfect Princess

To celebrate today’s holiday, Princess Day, author Kirstin Pulioff is guest blogging about her love of princesses. To connect with Kirstin, please visit her website, kirstinpulioff.com. You can follow her on Twitter and Facebook, too.

Kirstin is the author of the Princess Madeline trilogy, making her a perfect guest blogger for today's topic.

Kirstin is the author of the Princess Madeline trilogy, making her a perfect guest blogger for today’s topic!

I am honored to be writing today on NATIONAL PRINCESS DAY!!!!!  There couldn’t be a more perfect day for me to post… except maybe Bon Jovi appreciation day, but I don’t think Kimberly would let me.    ;)

Princesses are wonderful. The epitome of beauty, elegance, and leadership, princesses are irreplaceable in literature. In the past, they have been portrayed as the damsel in distress or face to inspire a nation. Times have changed though, and today more empowered princess tales are being written. In newer stories, princesses are no longer content sitting in the corner with embroidery. And if they are, take a closer look at their knitting needles, they may be sharpened weapons.

This princess empowerment change has taken place in books, movies, and all creative outlets. Instead of the sweet Snow White, eagerly cleaning for the dwarves or blissfully spending the day singing at a wishing well, we’re shown a take charge royal who doesn’t need a man, doesn’t need to be rescued, and can plan her own destiny.

No matter how much our interpretation of princesses and royalty change, I believe they will always be important figures in literature.

Here are just a couple of famous princesses from recent history (I secretly love that we still have real princesses):

Princess Grace of Monocco, otherwise known as movie star Grace Kelly, went from Hollywood royalty to actual royalty. She is a story of real life dreams coming true.

Princess Diana is known as the people’s princess. Devoting her life to her sons and charitable foundations, she has left a legacy of giving back.

Fictional princesses have also left lasting impressions on us. Here are just a couple:

Cinderella has been adapted into hundreds of tales and movies. As a symbol of triumphing over oppression, Cinderella has helped inspire millions to overcome living in unfortunate circumstances.

Princess Leia has captured the hearts of children and adults. Her no nonsense approach to thwarting the Empire and Dark Side showed girls that princesses can be just as involved in the action as any man.

And my favorite princess… Princess Madeline.

Princess Madeline is the heroine in my middle grade fantasy adventure series. She embodies the fun of a traditional fairytale with a modern twist. Taking control of her life comes with adventures she never anticipated.

Princess Madeline is available here:

The Escape of Princess Madeline

The Battle for Princess Madeline

The Dragon and Princess Madeline

The Princess Madeline Trilogy

Thank you, Kimberly, for letting me post on Princess Day, and share some of my favorites with you. Let me know… Who’s your favorite princess?

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Who should I celebrate on March 2?

March 2nd is Dr. Seuss’s birthday … and Jon Bon Jovi’s. Both men are important to me as a children’s book author and a Jersey girl, but only one has had my undying obsession for 31 years.

Much to my dad's dismay, there were many posters like this on my wall.

Much to my dad’s dismay, there were many posters like this on my wall. There were none of Dr. Seuss.

But this post isn’t meant to discuss how my friend took me to Jon’s house, and I stood on the hood of her car in my bikini top and shorts to try to catch a glimpse of him. (I didn’t.) This blog is not the place to discuss how I used to tell Tugger that Jon was his daddy every time a Bon Jovi song came on. (Maybe I should request doggie support.) This post isn’t to discuss how my sister and I compete over who is the bigger Bon Jovi fan. (It’s me.)

That a fan I am!
That a fan I am!
I love Jon—what a man!

Jon, like other songwriters, tells a story through his songs, just as Dr. Seuss told stories through his books. Their subjects are different, but their works make you feel things, whether it’s giddy or silly reading a Dr. Seuss book, or sad, happy, or wistful when you hear a song that means something to you.

Would you like Jon
here or there?
I would like Jon
here or there.
I would like Jon anywhere.

There are songs that I enjoy for pure entertainment. “Why Aren’t You Dead?” makes me laugh no matter what mood I am in. I want to play maracas with the band onstage for “Keep the Faith.” I have imagined once (or four hundred thousand times) that Jon was singing “Always” to me at a concert.

Young fans! If you keep
Your ears open enough,
Oh, the music you will hear!
The most wonderful stuff!
You’ll miss the best songs if you keep your ears shut!

New Jersey is my favorite Bon Jovi album. On it is a song, “Blood on Blood,” that took on a new meaning for me a few years ago. If you don’t know the song, it’s about childhood friends who go separate ways as they get older, but they vow to be there for each other no matter what. I had a close friend with whom I lost touch because of distance, life, thinking there was always more time to pick up that phone to call. We reunited about six years ago. Shortly afterwards, she was diagnosed with leukemia. I sent her the words to the song (and the New Jersey CD), and we talked about how that song exemplified the way we felt about each other. She died two years after her diagnosis, and I cannot listen to that song without thinking of her and shedding a bittersweet tear or a hundred.

Maybe, Jon, I thought, your message we can’t ignore.
Maybe, Jon, your song now means a little bit more.

I wonder if people realize that there are many songs that, like Dr. Seuss books, have messages that we should consider.

Are there songs or songwriters who make you think of stories that reflect something in your life? Please let me know in the comment section.