Saturday, May 27, 2017

"A book in like a garden carried in the pocket." Chinese Proverb

I have always loved books, although we had very few books in our house when I was a child. Our mother read to us from a children's Bible stories book, but I always wanted more. I saved my paltry allowance (25 cents every two weeks) year round to buy a few books from the Scholastic Book order form handed out by the elementary school teachers. I still have those books - which cost 35 cents each in the early 1960's. When I was in 3rd or 4th grade, a door-to-door salesman came to our house and sold my parents a leather-bound set of Richards Topical Encyclopedias. I loved those books - and I read them all (yes, I read encyclopedias- a bit dry, but a book is a book.) My favorite was volume 14, which entirely comprised of stories and literature, including all of Aesop's Fables. I can still feel the silken smoothness of the shiny off-white pages, smell the leather covers, and feel the weight of that big book in my small hands.  
In my opinion, children should own some books of their own. Books are great de-stressors, and they provide a wonderful opportunity to develop a child's imagination. Books are magical, and they can transport a person to a plethora of different worlds! Books allow a child to have some meaningful alone time.  I remember sitting in an overstuffed rocker and reading my books over and over - enjoying traveling to different lands and times and places. 
Sadly, not all families can afford to purchase books for their children. Such is the case for the families served by The New Light Education Center in Sharon, PA. My friend Dr. April Lynn Torrence is the Director of the Center, and I enjoy traveling there twice a year to present my children's book GRADY GETS GLASSES to the young students on Mercer County Vision Screening Day. (I have written about Dr. Torrence's good work in Sharon on Blogspot in the past - )
With summer just around the corner, I have been thinking about the children at New Light Education Center. When Grady the bunny and I present there, the kids love us, and we feel like ROCK STARS - so I decided to send some books to April to distribute to the kids before they leave for the summer. I am so delighted that she is going to make the GRADY books a special present for the students as they "graduate" to the next grade! The children will go home with a book of their very own, and I am thrilled to be able to help make this happen.
Reading is the most important skill a person can learn, because most everything in our world depends on reading. To make strong leaders for the future, we must promote the love of reading in our children now
I am so happy that GRADY GETS GLASSES will be taking children in Sharon, PA, on imaginative trips from home this summer. Thank you, April, for allowing us to share some books with your students! We are so happy to contribute to the work you do for your community every day! 
Please invite Grady Gets Glasses (and me) into your school. if you are not in the Pittsburgh area, we do virtual field trips with a group called Field Trip Zoom. 
As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. Rittman Publishing, LLC ®
GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit  
As always, I welcome your comments and suggestions. Rittman Publishing, LLC ®

GRADY GETS GLASSES was the winner of Best New Children's Book 2016 from The Authors' Zone. For more information about The Authors' Zone, please visit 

Visit Dede's webpage for complete details on her award-winning book, STUDENT TEACHING: THE INSIDE SCOOP FROM A MASTER TEACHER. Many colleges have made the book required readingSigned copies are available Dede is also a national speaker on The Three C's for Classroom success: Confidence, communication, and Creativity; Avoiding Teacher burnout; and many other inspirational topics. 

I LOVE writing. And I love writing children's books- my newest passion. Although it will be a ton of work, I am looking forward to selling my books.  Since I was a secondary teacher, I know that I have much to learn about elementary students, and I will have to follow my own advice and be my genuine self.  However, I also know that I am passionate about helping kids who have to wear glasses, and that GRADY GETS GLASSES sends a positive message. I am willing to work hard and do all the things that also made me a successful teacher for 37 years. I remain inspired! 

Elementary teachers in Western Pennsylvania and beyond - I am willing to come into your classroom in person or as a virtual field trip through a group called Field Trip Zoom.  Check them out! 

Teacher friends- let me know if you want me to read GRADY GETS GLASSES at your school. I am willing to come in to discuss the creative writing process, why writing is important, and personal fulfillment through writing, along with reading my book.  I would appreciate the exposure, and I would make signed copies available for purchase in your classrooms following the reading.  Please email me at  The website now has plush Grady bunnies for sale!

Please like Dede's new page Grady Gets Glasses for updates about her children's book. 

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