Silver Lining All Around

Gray clouds: LadyD Books
SkyWatch Friday

 Who said, "Every cloud has a silver lining"?

"John Milton's masque (dramatic entertainment) 'Comus' (1634) gave rise to the current proverb with the lines, 'Was I deceiv'd, or did a sable cloud/ Turn forth her silver lining on the night?' Charles Dickens, in his novel 'Bleak House' (1852), recalled the lines with 'I turn my silver lining outward like Milton's cloud,' and the American impresario Phineas T. Barnum first recorded the wording of the modern saying in 'Struggles and Triumphs' (1869) with 'Every cloud,' says the proverb, 'has a silver lining.'"

Thus, Phineas T. Barnum, in 1869, was the first to write the proverb that is said today, but the concept behind it dates back to John Milton's masque in 1634.

Above photo taken from our eastern view (glorious sunrise) with the Nikon D200. 

I'm a huge fan of the song, Clouds by Judy Collins. Some of you may remember...

talking with artists by pat cummings

I have been working on writing my own children's stories for quite sometime now. I belong to a writer's group online. I just love to write and I'm always grabbing pen and paper to quickly jot down some ideas. Do you ever get that urge to write, or perhaps doodle and sketch a bit? While I was at our local library, I checked out a few books on "How To Draw."

Talking With Artists by Pat Cummings is the winner of the 1992 Boston Globe/Horn Book Award for Nonfiction. I'm reading through the book this week and discovered a few things about the artist. If you're interested in her work, for more information visit

Pat illustrated:
Clean Your Room, Harvey Moon!
Just Us Women (Reading Rainbow Books)
Storm in the Night
My Mama Needs Me

 The jacket flap reads:

Have you ever wondered

  • Where children's book illustrators find their inspiration?
  • If they were always good at what they do?
  • What their days are like?
  • How you can become an artist, too?
For The Page 56

"I think I was asked to illustrate it (Faithful Elephants) because I love to draw animals, and because I use real people for models I can get great feeling into my figures." -- Ted Lewin
What are you reading today?

Grandson playing the guitar: LadyD Books

When we're not looking at picture books, my grandson loves to play the guitar. He definitely has that "in the zone" look! Photo for Color Connection.

Have a wonderful weekend!

 “You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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Wordless Wednesday: Bad Hair Day

Siamese cat: LadyD Books

                       “The only escape from the miseries of life are music and cats...”
                                                      -- Albert Schweitzer

Our Siamese catJazz could be saying:

"Everyone has a bad hair day now and then."

"I'm not coming out until the children are gone!"

"Oh, those long winter days make way for many a cat nap."

What do you think?

I just love our cat Jasmine and my piano students do, too. Jazz is small and quite feminine but she usually surprises everyone when she greets them with her fog-horn voice and dramatic personality.

LadyD Books is linking up with NC Sue and Create with Joy

Happy WW!

 “You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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Review: It's Our Nature

It's Our Nature picture book

 I recently won this book, It's Our Nature at Library Thing in exchange for my honest review. I think most of you know that I discovered my niche along time ago and that is children's books. Ever since I have been blessed with 4 grandchildren (and did I tell you another is on his way?), I find myself most comfortable reading picture books. 

Perhaps some find kid's books boring but have you thought of some of these points...

1. The character or characters
2. The story line
3. The setting
4. The pace, or action and conflict
5. The illustrations

I even take notice on the size and shape of the book, and how it feels in my hands. I visually scan the overall theme to the story and then begin to read aloud with a grandchild snuggled close by. In this particular hardcover picture book, we discover that animals have feelings to.

Book Description

A unique look at the social behaviour of wild animals for very young children, this book will find a home on school and library shelves, and in the hands of careful parents.

Offering a unique perspective on the animal kingdom and its social habits, young children will embrace this beautifully illustrated book, both visually and intellectually.

My Review

A clever book title bridges an understanding of animal behavior for children to learn that animals have feelings, too. I found the text to be very educational and informative, beginning with a description of the Howler Monkey's selfless concern for the well-being of others. Interesting illustrations depict the animal community of elephants and flamingos to be one of a generous community. Overall, a strong sense of harmony (embracing diversity) is seen throughout the animal kingdom, showing strong attributes of the penguin, armadillo, and wildebeest, to name a few. I especially like how the book cover becomes a free animal poster. This would be a great addition in school, home library, and gift giving.

4/5 stars.
Love the cover art and I do like penguins, so cute! This is a good read for an older child.

Happy Reading!

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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Sweet Potato Skies

sunrise in an avocado grove

early morning sunrise

Orange sunrise: LadyD Books

Woke up this a.m. and I just had a feeling that it was going to be a "sweet potato" kind of day. I love sweet potatoes baked, whipped and french-fried. Have you tried sweet potato pie? It's especially tasty. I made a couple of pumpkin pies this year and took them over to our sons' place for the family gathering. I hope there was much happiness around the table yesterday for you and your loved ones.

Well, for more sky views and not necessarily an orange sunrise like mine, you might want to take a peak at SkyWatch Friday. I can't get over how low the cloud cover was for a fall, southern exposure sky. I've noticed that the nights are getting chilly here in SoCal. How about where you are?

teddy bears: LadyD Books

Our grandchildren have their favorite teddy bears. It's funny to see them reach for the ones they love, to see how one little endearing bear makes them so happy. The wonderful thing about these special stuffed animals is that they were my parents. So there are special memories shared here. Have you surrounded yourself with toy-like animals or have passed them along to others?

granddaughter and teddy bears: LadyD Books

                          Granddaughter's cozy, pink polka dot pajamas for Color Connection

I recently finished reading a hardcover book by James Robison on Life Lessons from Pets and Wildlife called, God of All Creation. The book shares of a miniature dachshund teaching her owner, James Robison, profound insights about life, faith, and God’s care for all of His creation. A devoted dog lover and co-host of the television program Life Today, James shares how the antics of his own dog, Princess, as well as observations from all animals in creation, reveal “expressions of God’s love, lessons of His grace, warnings about sin, and other eternal truths.”

Excerpt from God of All Comfort, for The Friday 56

"When I see a dog tilting its head to the side, yearning to understand the words of its master, I see the posture that we must take with our Master, our Father and our God. We must live with "tilted heads," seeking not only  to hear God but also to understand what He is saying."

Granddaughter petting the kitty: LadyD Books

            Our sweet granddaughter in the arms of her grandpa, lovingly petting our kitty.

My Review

It's interesting how our sweet pets are at our mercy to care for them, and yet they seem to teach us a great deal in return. The book starts with an overview of how Princess, a miniature dachshund came into the author's life and in the following chapters we read how their loving relationship continues to evolve with a meaningful and valuable character changing lessons. The author makes numerous parallels of his dog's natural instincts, along with wildlife, to our own human tendencies and beautifully weaves scripture throughout the story to give the reader glimpses of our God's shepherd-like heart of love towards people. It's a sweet book, easy to read, with warm pencil drawings. I love books about animals, so naturally I was drawn to this one. Princess has a personality that is delightfully personable and you just want to get to know her better, while reading along.

5/5 stars, highly recommended.

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received a copy of this book from Waterbrook Multnomah for review purposes. I was not compensated for this review, nor was I required to write a positive review. The opinions expressed in this review are entirely my own.
 God of All Creation: Life Lessons from Pets and Wildlife

You may be interested in,
For the Fruits of All Creation/Now Thank We All Our God


“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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Wordless Wednesday: What's for Din Din?

Turkey at Bates Nut Farm

Rooster at Bates Nut Farm

                                   A large bird in the genus Meleagris and a chanticleer

Photos For:

Create With Joy
In Him We Live And Move And Have Our Being
La La's Home Daycare

You may be interested in:

Five Silly Turkeys
10 Fat Turkeys
Turkey Trouble

Happy WW and Happy Thanksgiving!

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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Review and Giveaway: Ella the Pink Elephant

numerous clouds in the sky: LadyD Books
Cloud of Elephants for SkyWatch Friday

The elephant dance: LadyD Books
The Elephant Dance

large cloud: LadyD Books

Humans are the elephant's worst enemy. Luckily, elephants don't have many other enemies. If you were as big as they are, you wouldn't have many enemies either.

Elephant at the safari park: LadyD Books

As our  first rain storm approached and the clouds rolled in, the cloud formations  seemed to take on an elephant cloud look that reminded me of these elephant statues we had seen at the Safari Park. Do you have a favorite zoo close by? Every time I look at my animal photos (like the one below), I am reminded of how fortunate we are to have a famous zoo and safari park close by. I really enjoy watching elephants do their dance, swing style.

Mom and baby elephant: LadyD Books
Mother and Baby

 For The Friday 56, we visited our beautiful, local library and found a wonderful book,
Elephants: A Book for Children by Steve Bloom, a wildlife, and nature photographer. There are 80 stunning photographs and entertaining text captures, to answer questions like:

Why do elephants flap their ears?
How much do they eat?
Why do they roll in the mud?

elephants a book for children by steve bloom
Pg. 56
"Sometimes elephants take part in festivals and are painted all over. In India the elephant is particularly respected." -- David Henry Wilson, author
elephant for festival

So, upon returning home from our elephant journey at this huge outdoor park, my granddaughter and I decided to play "feed the elephant a peanut." My husband and I had so much fun making this cute homemade toy out of cardboard and laminating paper peanuts to entertain a 2-year-old. You can find the instructions (quite easy) on how to make it, here.

feed the elephant game: LadyD Books

granddaughter with peanuts feeding elephant: LadyD Books

ella the pink elephant picture book

Once upon a time, Ella, a baby elephant born in a zoo, was so cute that she was dressed in crowns, earrings, tutus, colorful shawls and fancy slippers. She got lots of attention! When she outgrew her baby costumes she was elegantly dressed for weddings and was still the center of attention. But what happened to Ella when she grew old and wanted to retire from the limelight? When she was no longer loved for her looks, did she find the meaning of true happiness? Follow Ella through her life from birth to old age!
My Review:

From baby to old age, Ella fascinates children and parents. We meet Ella, her mother, and father, along with her zookeeper,  Zeppo the Clown. Being a graceful elephant child, we see Ella playing with all sorts of dress up attire, especially pink slippers to match her pink body. Being the star of the zoo, Ella begins to form unique relationships with everyone who comes to visit her. Time passes and Ella grows much larger. She now finds herself the star of weddings and many people ride her on top of her beautiful blankets. Eventually, Ella needs to rest and retire from being the star. Will she be alone or will others continue to show love and visit her? Like other elephants, Ella will remember all of her warm memories with people. A beautiful book with an insightful message on growing old gracefully, with colorful illustrations.

I recommend Ella the Pink Elephant to everyone. My 2-year-old granddaughter, my daughter, and 4-year-old grandson love this book. Congratulations on the Pinnacle Book Achievement Award, Doris Rueger!

5/5 stars.

Daughter and granddaughter: LadyD Books

reading a picture book together: LadyD Books
Reading Together for Color Connection

life, love and fame of ella the pink elephant: LadyD Books

Ella the Pink Elephant: Her Life, Love, and Fame

Doris Rueger has supplied an extra copy of her picture book for my dear readers. This giveaway is  for the U.S. only and  will be held for one week. Don't forget to leave me your email in the comment section and good luck everyone!

a Rafflecopter giveaway

“You can’t get a cup of tea big enough or a book long enough to suit me." C. S. Lewis
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