The Power of One Writer
Back Yards, Ethiopia and Children's Books

Yep! Lanie’s right.

Yep!  Lanie’s best friend is off saving orangutans in Indonesia, and she’s wildly jealous…until she discovers the beauty and things to save in her own back yard.  Now I’m home to discover my son Jonathan’s pictures of the farmers’ market at the link, above.  At one time I thought I’d work farmers’ market scenes into Lanie’s story, and I haunted the booths he writes about to get ideas.  I also discovered that spring has come not only to Japan (picture on left) but to my own back yard.  Gorgeous gorgeousity.

Alas, I won’t be able to savor my back yard for long.  I’ll be driving to Kirksville, MO for a young author conference and then flying to New York City, where I’ll be signing at the American Girl store from 2-4 on April 17 (aka my birthday, aka the day we evacuated from the Red River flood) and meeting with New York families who’ve adopted children from Ethiopia (lunch on the 18th).  Next weekend…LA!  Whirling, whirling on we go.

I’m thinking of back yards also because it’s National Library month.  Proud as I am of the 43 libraries I’ve helped plant through Ethiopia Reads ( I couldn’t help but think–as I spent time in lovely international school libraries–about the treasure of libraries in my own back yard.  I’m scared we’re taking the treasure for granted and that it’ll slip out of our fingers.  Go, go libraries.

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