Sunday, May 28, 2017

I won an award...

...and it came with chocolate.

It's called the Golden Cowbell Book Award. It's sponsored by the Swiss Group of International School Librarians and voted on by students in Switzerland.

"My Grandma's a Ninja" was the winner of the Braunveieh Category, which appears to refer both to early readers and a breed of Swiss cow. (My cow looks kind of lazy compared to the other two categories.)

Like Dylan, I was unable to travel to Switzerland to receive my prize in an official ceremony. Unlike Dylan, I actually wrote a book.

I should add that the prize came with a tin of Callier Swiss chocolates. When the package arrived I was running out the door to Ethan's school concert, so I left the certificate and the open tin of chocolates on the dining room table. 

When I returned, half the chocolates were gone, there were wrappers strewn about the floor, and chocolate paw marks on the certificate. I'm just going to say they are cow hooves.


Thursday, May 25, 2017


Songs and poems about the passage of time and love and loss have always had deep meaning for me.

I can't read "Ten Tiny Toes" at book readings without my voice cracking. It's my love letter to Samuel and Ethan through time and space, and through it they will be forever young. That's heavy to get through when you're looking at toddlers sitting on their moms' laps, and you get to the part where the toes are grown up, and you see the moms in the audience start to tear up.

Because at that moment we're all thinking the same thing: what we wouldn't give to stop time, or turn back time.

I love these two songs. One is about reevaluating one's life at the end of a relationship. The other is about comforting a child through a lullabye that the writer realizes will out-live them both.

Sorry to be such a downer.

Hey. Sometimes it helps to sing.

Wednesday, May 24, 2017


I had an email exchange on Sunday afternoon with my new editor on "Three Grumpy Trucks." The illustrator is starting on the artwork and we discussed what three trucks might be doing at a playground. (Would they stay in the sandbox? Would they venture over by the sprinklers?)

I walked into Samuel's room and said, "What are you doing right now?"

God bless Samuel.

We went to the playground at Central Park West and 85th. I intended just to walk around for a few minutes and observe. But when we got to the sandbox I said, "I'm just going to take off my shoes for a minute," and one thing led to another.

There was a lot of digging, scooping, lifting, and sifting going on. Samuel and I befriended an 18-month-old while his caregiver helpfully read a book on a bench twenty yards away.

How do you make a toddler laugh?

Bury his feet in the sand, then say, "Where are your feet?! We've lost your feet!" Then act very surprised when he pulls them out. 

Repeat for thirty minutes.

There was squealing, tunnel stomping, sand eating, and lots and lots of snot. All the ingredients for happiness.

I'm just gonna say it publicly. The world would be so much better with one more toddler in it, don't you think?

Saturday, May 20, 2017

I miss

Her breath.

Her lips.

The smell of her hair.

Her voice.

Her laugh.

Holding her hand.

Watching her undress.

Her nakedness.

Her kiss. Her mouth. Her tongue.

Falling asleep with her in my arms.

Her face. Her smile.


Saturday, May 13, 2017

Happy Mother's Day

This has been a rough year. Not sure what I would've done without you. Thank you. It's nice to be loved.

Monday, May 1, 2017


The upside of emotional distress is that I'm losing weight. Eight months ago I was topping out at 150. Tonight after my run I weighed 135. If this keeps up I'm going to be able to wrestle 114.5 again.

I'm also getting faster.

About a month ago I ran a 3:03 half mile and it almost killed me. Two weeks ago I ran a 2:57. Last week I ran 2:51.

I looked like this:

Later that week I ran a 6:20 mile. Tonight I ran a 6:10.

I looked like this:

Are there 10 more seconds in these legs? I think so.

Every cloud has a silver lining.