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First flowers of spring

Today is the first day of spring, but normally here in northern Illinois that doesn’t mean a whole lot and we’re still in a deep freeze. This year has been different. It has been mostly above freezing since the beginning of March, leading to a worrying development as all the bulbs I planted last fall […]

The waiting is the hardest part

Farmer Bear’s Garden is now available for sale! It was the culmination of a very long process, and the last few weeks were the hardest because I knew it was so close, but I couldn’t quite get it over the goal line. Once the book designer’s work is complete, you have PDF files of your […]

It’s getting close

I know many people are wondering about progress on the book. The past few weeks have been spent waiting as the designer works on creating the actual book. Before this step in the process, I had photo files with all the illustrations and a document with the words, but no way to put them together […]

Flowers by the stable

I write a lot about gardening because I love helping things grow. There’s just a great feeling I get when everything is green and new life is sprouting, flowers are growing and the bees are buzzing everywhere again. Vegetables, flowers, bushes, it doesn’t matter – I like to see life thriving. That’s why I wrote […]

So you want to self-publish a children’s book (Part 2)

In part 1 I talk about the steps of self-publishing up to hiring an illustrator. Now I’ll go over the collaboration process. I had a mental picture in my head of what I wanted but it’s not easy to describe, especially when you’re not an artist and don’t know the right terminology. I’ve read a […]

So you want to self-publish a children’s book (Part 1)

In an earlier post I explained how I came up with the idea for Farmer Bear’s Garden and fleshed out the idea in my head while riding my bike and during other idle pursuits. Now I’m going to explain what happens after you have your draft done. Once I had finished writing the book and […]

Grandpa Casey’s Garden

When I think of my Grandpa Casey, the first thing that always comes to mind was his garden. He had the biggest garden I’ve ever seen — any bigger and you’d have to call it a farm. He kept this huge garden going well into his 80s. And talk about a green thumb — everything […]

The Origin of the Story

I grew up around gardening and I never thought much about it. In my world, it was natural for your parents to be planting flowers and bushes, and working in the garden. My mom had flower beds everywhere and she was always trying new things, pruning plants, pulling out weeds, planning how to improve it […]

Seeds for Sale

Today I had to go to the hardware store to get a lightbulb, and as I was walking toward the checkout I noticed a display of garden seeds. While it is 30 degrees outside with a few inches of snow on the ground here in suburban Chicago, seeing those seeds for sale for the first […]