The day Gramma treats everyone to the DQ on Eighth Street!
Monthly Archives: April 2023
Here we go again!
Very happy to see my baby debut novel infused with new life as it is re-released by Shadowpaw Press in Regina. My author copies arrived today. First one to be claimed is one by my big brother Nels (the character John is based on him and I dug deep into my childhood well to recall growing up together on a farm in rural Washington). He loved the original novel but then his dog ate his copy. They were going to hang a sign around Emmie’s neck explaining what she’d done but they couldn’t catch her. I guess she really enjoys historical fiction. A twist of fate or coincidence: Shadowpaw publisher is Ed Willett; Shadowpaw is also the name of his cat. Ed is the name of my cat. Probably fate that brought us all together. Very happy this story is still going strong.
Hey, this is coming up
I’m happy to be chosen to be one of the four authors tapped to read from their work on May 25th at D’Lish. Readers’ Corner. Which, happily, is two blocks from my house! And, as I warned the organizers, it puts me in dangerous proximity to D’Lish cheesecake which is the. best. ever. I look forward to meeting and listening to my co-authors Theresa Slind, Cort Dogniez and Jennifer Wallace. What a fun evening! I hope to see you there… get the Oreo… seriously…
Congratulations to our friend and my co-writer for Saskatoon HOME magazine, Jeff O’Brien. In March, he was awarded the Queen’s Platinum Jubilee Medal by Lt. Governor Russ Merasty. We are busting our buttons!
Just to fill you in in case you don’t know, but Jeff uses the power of story to breathe life into Saskatoon’s history, and through his stories he nourishes a sense of character and cultural identity that defines our thriving city. A veritable raconteur, he’s been called “a Saskatoon treasure,” an “effusive advocate,” and a human repository of historical facts, legends and quirky details about our city. With vast knowledge and good humour, he brings the colourful past to life for hundreds of people annually. He emphasizes it began long before 1883 and the Temperance colonists. He reminds us that people had been living in these lands for 11,000 years.
Jeff’s been the Saskatoon’s full-time archivist for 25 years. In 2019 alone he made 48 public presentations, visited 14 classrooms, did 14 media interviews and hosted two public displays. In post-COVID 2022, his pace quickened, doing even more presentations, walking tours on the Meewasin Valley trail, talks to seniors and community groups, and educating Prairie Lily passengers with fascinating stories replete with fun facts, grim details; personal stories that paint the city’s past with humanity and meaning.
Born in Saskatoon, Jeff earned a degree in Canadian history in Regina, and a master’s in archival studies from UBC. He co-authored Saskatoon: A History in Photographs (2006), wrote a regular newspaper column, “From the Archives,” and four years presented over 150 historical vignettes, “Saskatoon Stories,” on CTV with Rob Macdonald, still available online https://saskatoon.ctvnews.ca/saskatoon-stories. Jeff currently writes the popular “Hometown Reflections,” Saskatoon HOME magazine.
Congratulations, sir! But your article is still due for the Summer issue….
The remaining snow has the consistency of a Slurpee so it’s fading fast. This week we’ve seen our first robin, Canada geese are showing up in pairs, and we heard the first lawnmower. I saw my first gopher, chewing on a Tim Horton’s cup, and the first ladybug reminds us to wait a while before raking up the leaves. They say to wait until temperatures are 10C or above for seven consecutive days to keep ladybugs cozy and happy. And, it was time to fish out last year’s wasp nest from the wall to our walk-out deck. Luckily, no one was home. Happy Spring!
It’s my book birthday!
A very exciting day as my debut novel, Small Reckonings, is being re-released by Shadowpaw Press Reprise. Violet, Hank, William and the rest of the cast are all very happy to get out there and meet new readers. The novel (in paperback and eBook) will be available here as well as directly from Shadowpaw. With copies in tow, the publisher will be at the Saskatchewan Library Association’s AGM and the Saskatchewan Book Awards in Saskatoon May 4th, and at SaskExpo on the weekend of May 6th. I so appreciate Shadowpaw for this opportunity: “I’m very pleased to be able to bring this amazing novel and its unforgettable characters back to the market in a new edition,” said Edward Willett, publisher of Shadowpaw Press. “Ensuring that this kind of notable book can continue to find new readers is exactly what the Shadowpaw Press Reprise imprint was created for.”
There she goes again
My friend Jessica is a force to be reckoned with and keeps adding notches to her list of accomplishments. Most recently, she was recognized for her “fearless advocacy on behalf of those with Down syndrome.” She was invited to Queen’s Park by Minister of Education of Ontario Stephen Lecce, who introduced her and her parents to the Members of the Legislative Assembly; she received a standing ovation. Hard to believe it’s been 24 years since her mom Dorlean and dad Joe were in our backyard showing off their new baby girl. We thought then, “Oh, the places you’ll go!” To the right, Jessica strikes a pose with her mom and dad, and (l to r): MPP Michael Parsa – Aurora—Oak Ridges—Richmond Hill, MPP Patrice Barnes – Ajax, Minister of Education Stephen Lecce, MPP Todd McCarthy – Durham, and Minister of Municipal Affairs and Housing Stephen Clark – Leeds—Grenville—Thousand Islands and Rideau Lakes.
That’s me, B+ and something I try to live by. Happy to see my pals at the Canadian Blood Services clinic on 8th Street this morning for another milestone donation. This time, 115. Not only is it a good thing to do, you get pretzels.