Book Shelf: A Pebble for Your Pocket by Thich Nhat Hanh

**Throwback to 2015** – From the time Thomas and Lillian were born (2005 and 2001) I read to them nightly before going to bed; leading to some time in 2017 when we all decided to discontinue doing so. Their tastes in what interested each of them had solidified by this point. We all continue to be heavy readers, reading daily.

A Pebble for Your Pocket – Mindful Stories for Children and Grown-ups by Thich Nhat Hanh

August 2015: Ask for help and you shall receive …

My son, Thomas (10 years old at the time) got angry the other night and it was spilling out of him in unkind ways. He asked me for help in getting past the moment and was not liking anything I suggested.

It was time for our nightly reading and “A Pebble for Your Pocket” is what we are currently reading. I opened to where we had stopped the night before and this is where we were to begin again, “When We Are Angry”.

Thomas stopped me after reading the title and halfway through the first sentence and said that I had chosen that on purpose. “No, Thomas, I did not. This is where we stopped last night. You asked for help and here it is.”

I felt his energy shift just from hearing this. He was glued to the entire section.

November 2020: This is a wonderful book for all ages. I’ve read it once or twice since this reading in 2015. It’s easy to read, with practical suggestions that work to help with a mindfulness practice.

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To support this website and the author’s interviewed, visit Support MTA for suggestions. Thank you! – Camilla

Book Shelf: Strange Creatures – The Story of Walter Rothschild and His Museum by Lita Judge

**Throwback to 2016** – From the time Thomas and Lillian were born I read to them nightly before going to bed; leading to some time in 2017 when we all decided to discontinue doing so. Their tastes in what interested each of them had solidified by this point. We all continue to be heavy readers, reading daily.

Strange Creatures – The Story of Walter Rothschild and His Museum by Lita Judge

Beautifully illustrated biography of a young man who followed his passion while surrounded by those who had chosen a different path for him. We LOVED it!!!! xoxo

US Amazon: https://amzn.to/3kwpNhD

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To support this website and the author’s interviewed, visit Support MTA for suggestions. Thank you! – Camilla

(The above are amazon affiliate links.)

Meet the Author: That’s Our Home by Jude Lennon

Today we travel to Liverpool to chat with Jude Lennon about how being a former teacher, having a storytelling business, writing Christmas plays, a lamb, eating chocolate, drinking gin, a VW campervan, and beaches come together as part of Jude’s past and current life.

Tell us something about yourself.

I’m Jude Lennon a former teacher who loved writing who is now an author who loves storytelling. I live in Liverpool with my partner Dom. He’s a musician so it’s a very creative but not particularly tidy household. I was a teacher for 18 years before leaving the chalk face to set up my storytelling business. When not in Lockdown, my days are spent visiting schools to deliver storytelling sessions, meet the author talks, writing workshops and drama workshops. I also run writing courses for adults and a yearly writing retreat. I try to write every day, even if it’s just a few hundred words.

In which genre do you write?

Mostly children’s picture and chapter books but I’ve written a collection of short stories for adults and my current WIP is a full length novel for adults.

How many published books do you have?

19

When did you first realize you wanted to be a writer and what ignited your author’s flame?

I’ve written for as long as I can remember and my career as a teacher (I taught 3, 4, 5 and 6 year old’s) gave me the opportunity for lots of writing. I was always making up stories for the children in my class or writing the Christmas play or assemblies. It was actually other people including work colleagues who suggested I should try to get my work published. I entered a writing competition, was crowned The Disney Winnie the Pooh Laureate for the North West of England and that was that.

What would you choose as your mascot, and why?

I’m a professional storyteller as well as writer. The storytelling business is Little Lamb Tales and I have a mascot called Lamby. He and his girlfriend Flossie accompany me everywhere and I mean everywhere. They even came with us to South America for a 6 week adventure a couple of years ago.

What does your ideal writing space look like?

Although I have an office at home, I’m very much a pen and paper girl initially so I like to have a notebook to hand and just write when the feeling takes me. Sometimes in bed, sometimes on a beach, sometimes at the dining table looking out of the window. As long as I have a notebook and pen I’m happy. When I come to type my stories up and editing it’s the laptop in my office.

Where did the idea for your most recent book come from?

That’s Our Home! is a children’s picture book about keeping the beaches clean. The idea came from my sister-in-law who was doing a beach clean and found a whole picnic wrapped in a towel and buried in the sand. I was so outraged I felt compelled to write a story.

What do you do when not writing or marketing your books?

Read, eat chocolate, drink gin, go walking, have jam nights with my friends where we sit around sing, laugh and talk (and drink gin). Preferably combine all of the above on a camping trip.

What is the most enjoyable thing you’ve found through writing?

Children’s faces when I read my books to them and being told my books were like Julia Donaldson! I ate out on that for a week ha ha.

What do you miss about being a kid?

I’m still a big kid. Play and using my imagination is still important but having the time and freedom to really devote time to it like I did as a child is what I miss the most.

List 3 interesting facts about yourself.

I own a beautiful 1974 VW campervan named Buttercup who appears in one of my books.

I once drove a different VW campervan called Poppy around Australia. The stars look amazing from a campfire in the outback.

Yes I am related to you know who.

A penguin knocks on your door and is wearing a sombrero. What does he say and why is he there?

“Hi I believe you sell hats. As you can see this one is a little small for me! Have you got anything bigger?”

What’s your favorite place to visit in your country and why?

The beach. I don’t even mind which one. I just love being by the sea. I grew up in Southport which is 30 miles up the coast from Liverpool. The sea doesn’t really come in but the smell of the sea has been in my nose since I was born. If I had to choose one beach location – Hell’s Mouth on the Llyn Peninsular in Wales.

What are you currently working on?

A full length novel with the working title Tea is the Cure for Everything. Due for release in 2021 ish.

Tell us about your most recent book.

I published my latest book ‘That’s Our Home!’ on 20th March. Great timing hey?! It’s a children’s picture book (illustrated by the wonderfully talented Lisa Williams) written in rhyme which explores the issue of keeping our beaches clean. The three main characters Seagull, Crab and Starfish have a very important message to spread.

It was wonderful to have you be a part of MTA, Jude. It sure sounds like you have tons of fun! Wishing you all the best! – Camilla

Where to find the book:

It’s available from Amazon and of course all good bookshops when they re-open. https://littlelambpublishing.co.uk/product/thats-our-home/

Connect with Jude:

Facebook – www.facebook.com/JudeLennonAuthor

Twitter – www.twitter.com/JudeLennonBooks

Instagram – www.instagram.com/JudeLennonBooks

Ko-fi – www.ko-fi.com/JudeLennon

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To support this website and the author’s interviewed, visit Support MTA for suggestions. Thank you! – Camilla, Founder and Host

Book Shelf: The Painted Fan by Marilyn Singer

The Painted Fan by Marilyn Singer

**Throwback to 2016** – From the time Thomas and Lillian were born I read to them nightly before going to bed; leading to some time in 2017 when we all decided to discontinue doing so. Their tastes in what interested each of them had solidified by this point. We all continue to be heavy readers, reading daily.

Beautifully illustrated story about a time of prophecy, magic and bravery. Great illustrations too. We really enjoyed this one! – Camilla

US Amazon: https://amzn.to/3d0qADq

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To support this website and the author’s interviewed, visit Support MTA for suggestions. Thank you! – Camilla

(The above are amazon affiliate links.)

Book Shelf: The Ink Garden of Brother Theophane

“The Ink Garden of Brother Theophane” by C.M. Millen

**Throwback to 2016** – From the time Thomas and Lillian were born I read to them nightly before going to bed; leading to some time in 2017 when we all decided to discontinue doing so. Their tastes in what interested each of them had solidified by this point. We all continue to be heavy readers, reading daily.

Another book we really enjoyed. A wonderful fiction based on the monks of the Middle Ages from Ireland who established monasteries throughout much of Europe and parts of the Middle East. The monasteries were the place where books were made. The monks carefully translated and copied the great written works of antiquity. – Camilla

US Amazon – https://amzn.to/2wna0he

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To support this website and the author’s interviewed, visit Support MTA for suggestions. Thank you! – Camilla

(The above are amazon affiliate links.)

Book Shelf: Fearless Flyer – Ruth Law and Her Flying Machine

Fearless Flyer – Ruth Law and Her Flying Machine by Heather Lang

Beautifully illustrated and wonderful book! We learned about Ruth Law and how on November 19, 1916 she took to the sky to fly from Chicago to New York in one day. Something no one had ever done. Especially not a woman.

“When I was a little girl I used to dream of flying, not with terror ….. but with wonder and delight. I would be a swallow flying south, or an eagle swooping down from the clouds, and then, all of a sudden, I’d wake up, just a little girl ready to cry because she had no wings.”

“I could anticipate what would happen to the motor by the sound of it.”

“To become an aviator one has to dismiss all fear.”

“The sky was my limit and the horizon my sphere. It’s any woman’s sphere if she has nerve and courage and faith in herself. She’s got to have faith in herself.”

US Amazon: https://amzn.to/31LE680

UK Amazon: https://amzn.to/33HszrY

Book Love: When the Shadbush Blooms

When the Shadbush Blooms by Carla Messinger

A great book about a Lenape Indian girl, about cycles and about tradition and change. We enjoyed it!

Book Information:

My grandparents’ grandparents walked beside the same stream where I walk with my brother, and we can see what they saw.

Today when a Lenape Indian girl ventures to the stream to fish for shad, she knows that another girl did the same generations before. Through the cycle of the seasons, what is important has remained: being with family, knowing when berries are ripe for picking, listening to stories in a warm home.

Told by Traditional Sister and Contemporary Sister, each from her own time, this is a book about tradition and about change. Then and now are not so very different when the shadbush blooms.

US Amavon: https://amzn.to/2NlMc4V

UK Amavon: https://amzn.to/2IY5Hfz

Book Love: Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas by Naomi C. Rose

Another book that Team TLC (Thomas (my son), Lillian (my daughter), and myself) really enjoyed …

Simple, enchanting tales that give a glimpse into Tibetan culture, sharing inspiring wisdom relating to peace, gratitude and seeing with the heart. I was only going to read one per night. Thomas and Lilian loved it so much they did not want me to stop! We read all three in one night!

Book Information:

Tibetan Tales for Little Buddhas is a 64-page picture book featuring three beautifully illustrated wisdom tales from Tibet. Wise men, dakini queens, and yetis are some of the fun and engaging characters that fill this book. Each story, told in English and Tibetan, offers a fun, enchanting glimpse of Tibetan culture. The book is written and illustrated with full-page, full color paintings by Naomi C. Rose, and has a foreword by the Dalai Lama. The book won the Nautilus Book Award and a Storytelling World Honor.

US Amazon : https://amzn.to/2wnWoi6

UK Amazon : https://amzn.to/2YLL8rG

Book Love: Visiting Feelings

Visiting Feelings by Lauren Rubenstein

Great and very basic book about emotional connection and mindfulness. Perfect for kids with a useful parent section too!

“If you listen to what your body can say, you’ll find that your feelings are really okay. With a bit of attention, a little more care, they might even tell you why they are there. Some feelings are tough, and some are more fun …. So whenever a feeling comes by to play, welcome it in, and let it stay for as long as it likes, …. Treat your feelings like friends, talking to you.”

Awesome!!!

Book Information:

Do you have a feeling that’s visiting today?
Can you open your door and invite it to play?

Visiting Feelings harnesses a young child’s innate capacity to fully experience the present moment. Rather than labeling or defining specific emotions and feelings, Visiting Feelings invites children to sense, explore, and befriend any feeling with acceptance and equanimity. Children can explore their emotions with their senses and gain an understanding of how feelings can lodge in the body, as conveyed by common expressions like “a pit in the stomach” or “lump in the throat.”

Children can cultivate this emotional intelligence and nurture a sense of mindfulness. In essence, mindfulness is tuning into yourself and paying attention to the present moment without judging or analyzing what you are thinking or feeling. Practicing mindfulness can enhance many aspects of a person’s well-being, help develop insight and empathy, and enhance resiliency.

Taking the time to practice mindfulness as a family is a remarkable gift for parents to give to their children, and will help children as they navigate the teen years and adulthood.

Includes a “Note to Parents” to provide more information about emotional awareness, and suggests ways to seamlessly incorporate mindfulness practices into your child and family’s daily routines.

US Amazon: https://amzn.to/2Emsuz1

UK Amazon: https://amzn.to/2VDp5l0