Monday, December 26, 2011

Holiday Story Hour in Snowmass

We had so much fun reading to the children at the Silvertree Hotel last week.

Here were some kids who loved the "fill-in" Fraser dog. They decorated him with reindeer antlers and a nose and generally had a great time taking off and putting on his life preserver.

I hope to wish any of our followers a very Happy Holiday season.

If any of you are in the Aspen area, we will be at the Hotel Jerome Tuesday, Dec. 27 at 3:30 for the 12 Days of Christmas story reading.

We will be back at the Silvertree Hotel on Thursday, Dec. 29th at 4:30.

We hope to see you all there.

Sunday, November 13, 2011

Another Fraser?

I definitely should learn to use a video camera and video the amount of real dogs that think this "Fraser" look-alike is "real."

At the Saturday market, I'm always amazed at how funny it is when other passing doggies stop and either bark, try to play, or are actually scared of this stuffed dog. Dog owners are amazed at their dogs' behavior.

OK, next year, I promise to get that video going.

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Love This!

I loved this saying that I saw carved on a plaque at a Farmer's Market in Canada.

Our gorgeous and warm fall is over and now Aspen is blanketed in snow and it's cold!

I've been writing, working, baking. I'm presently judging the Fraser Writing Contest for this year. I've read some amazing stories. The winners will be listed later this month!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Maggie Going to Wok

Here's my little Maggie on her way to work at the hospital, the assisted living center and to visit the children at the Early Learning Center.

Maggie is almost 13 and her advice on getting older is to stay involved volunteering and to exercise daily. She learned a lot from Fraser and is trying to pass on those lessons to all of us.

Our last day at the Aspen Saturday Market is this Saturday, October 15th. Hope to see some of you there.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Maggie On Duty

Maggie does more than come to book signings. Yes, she's a therapy dog at Aspen Valley Hospital. Here she is with a patient. She visits patients at both the hospital as well as the senior center every month.

Fraser was a volunteer first and now Maggie loves her job, too! More later.

Friday, September 16, 2011

My Kenyan Pen Pal

I thought it would be fun to share this photo with you today. Nimrod has been my pen pal for the past 7 years!

I met his dad, Wesley, who was our safari guide in the Masa Mara in Kenya eleven years ago. I gave him Fraser's first adventure; Adventure on Snowmass Mountain. He, in turn, shared it with his children. Several years later, I received a nice letter and photo from his son, Nimrod, requesting that I become his pen pal. He said in the letter that he learned how to ski (in his head) by reading my book, which was such a wonderful thing to hear.

We have written letters back and forth (yes, snail mail) ever since. In 2008, our family went back to Kenya along with my daughter's good friend and her family. It was a total shock and surprise -- when we were in the Masa Mara, Wesley, Nimrod and his sister, Miriam arrived to surprise me. I had tried to contact them before I left with no luck.

It was such a pleasure to sit down with the three of them and talk. I had brought gifts just in case. Nimrod and Miriam told me they had never spoken to "whites" before. We all had such a lovely visit.

Just this summer, I realized that Nimrod now has use of a computer! I miss his handwritten letters, but understand how great it is to receive emails so quickly. He is studying hard and taking classes and hoping to go on to university.

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

A Balloon Day!

Summer is coming to an end. But not before this gorgeous Labor Day weekend. I only have a few more Saturday Market days left before it comes to a close mid-October.

How can I resist posting these darling photos of these beautiful children?

Fall is in the air....

Sunday, August 21, 2011

How Adorable?

OK, you may be getting tired of these posts, but I can't help it--how adorable are these little girls who came to my Saturday Market booth and posed with their books. I think the little one on the right will be a wonderful cook someday! She was hugging my cookbook, Lighter Tastes of Aspen.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

Storytelling on top of Aspen Mountain

Every Wednesday during the summer, I ride the gondola up Aspen Mountain and do story time under the kids' tent. I read or tell the Fraser stories to kids of all ages.

It's one of my favorite things to do, as you can only imagine. The kids are always polite, great listeners and I enjoy meeting their parents and extended families.

Here are: Connor, Caitlyn and Arienna from Florida with their books and the gondola in the background.

Tuesday, August 9, 2011

Saturday Market

Wow, yet another really fun Farmer's Market last weekend. No, these flowers are not from our market, but from the one I visit up in Canada, but they are so gorgeous.

I so enjoy meeting all my Fraser fans, new and old. If I can ever figure out how to get the latest photo downloaded, I'll post it ASAP.

I had one family come to my booth from Texas. The mom had read the Fraser book to her child's class and they ordered them for their school. It's stories like these that I love and make the market experience all worthwhile.

If you ever have questions for Fraser, he's still answering, so send them to us at:

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Summer Vacation

Don and I are back in town after a wonderful vacation in Saltspring Island, BC where we spend a good part of July each summer sea kayaking.

Maggie was fine because Courtney took care of her.

We're looking forward to being at the Farmer's Market once again August 6th. We've been busy doing story hour at Generation X, on top of Aspen Mountain and on the mall on most Fridays.

Sunday, July 10, 2011

Fraser Fans!

I just love summer! I just did another Farmer's Market yesterday and thought you'd all enjoy this great photo of twins reading two of the Fraser books.

It's too hot to bring Maggie this summer, so I'm relying on my Fraser fill-in stuffed/almost real dog for kids to pet. I'm thinking I'll have to video the antics next market as dogs of diverse breeds love this "animal." He draws quite a crowd and dog owners are totally surprised to realize their "smart" canine cannot tell the difference between a real and "fake" dog. They can't believe it when their dogs are actually afraid of "Fraser." Too funny for words. I promise to get it on video.

U Tube here we come.

For now, please admire these adorable redheads!!

Sunday, June 26, 2011

Farmer's Market summer 2011

The Farmer's Market started up last weekend in Aspen. A market filled with colors, music, fruits and veggies, flowers and crafts. Most of all, our market is filled with people and dogs!! It's a wonderful social event to start the weekend.

I'm happy to be sharing a booth this summer every other week with Georganne Waggerman and Lee Shapiro, both wonderful local artists.

Here at my first market of the summer, is a photo of three darling children from our neighboring town of Steamboat Springs, Colorado. They had a few of my books but purchased ones they didn't have. It is so much fun for me to meet the children and parents who read my books. What a treat for me! Maggie stayed home as it was too hot that day for her, but we had her fill-in.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Shining Stars

Every year in March, the wonderful Shining Stars organization comes to Aspen. So many children who have been dealing with cancer never get an opportunity to come and ski. Kathy Gingery is an angel I have known for many years and I so believe in her dreams that have become a reality year after year.

I'm always so impressed by the volunteers and the outpouring of love from our little mountain town. A few years ago, I decided besides giving $ I wanted to give my books away as a small token.

This photo was taken of a young man who will take a little bit of Aspen home with him. I gave away over 90 books with great joy!!

Thursday, June 16, 2011


I thought you all might like to see a photo of the real Maggie. It's June in Aspen and the weather has been fabulous. Maggie has been thoroughly enjoying herself sunning, swimming in our pond and relaxing in her older years. We're taking a long walk today so she can see all her doggie friends.

We're excited to be a part of the children's events this summer in the Mall. We'll be reading to kids. I will have a booth this summer at the Farmer's Market.

Hope you're all enjoying summer as well!

Friday, April 29, 2011

Room to Read

Room to Read is an amazing global organization dedicated to to bringing books to children in 9 countries across Asia and Africa. They help millions of children in the developing world gain access to quality educational opportunities.

I'm happy to be a part of the Aspen chapter of Room to Read.

Recently, we held our yearly fundraiser at the Viceroy Hotel in Snowmass. We had representatives from the national office in San Francisco!

High school students were on hand to read to our local children. Zak the yak made an apprearance and was loved by all he met!! The Fraser books were part of all the books read to the children!!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Author's Tea Aspen Elementary School

I always feel so honored to be invited to this 4th grade girls' "rite of passage."

Dee Searing puts together an amazing "tea" with the help of many mom volunteers. Every year the decorations are different and the small gym is transformed into a special space.

You walk in and can't believe the work that has gone into this day. The tables are set beautifully with flowers and the first course: caesar salad and fruit kabobs. We look at our seats and there are colorful "garden/tea" hats for all of us to wear. I sat at a table of 7 beautiful and very well behaved young ladies. We discussed books and I told them the story from Fraser's Memoir about the four bears in our house. We laughed and felt so very special when the moms served us our tea, tea sandwiches and a variety of desserts.

I love living in Aspen and I especially love the yearly Author's Tea. Thanks to everyone for making me feel as if I'm at the Academy Awards!!

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Maggie the Yellow Dog Visits the Hospital

Since Fraser has passed on to doggie heaven, Maggie has taken over his job as one of the pet therapy dogs at Aspen Valley Hospital. We certainly enjoy our job bringing smiles to the patients in the hospital. The children visiting parents love a visit as well. What a wonderful program Rita Cohen started years ago. We are so happy to be a part of it. People love the doggie photos on the wall just before entering the Patient Care Unit.

Besides the patients, the staff are always thrilled to pet our dogs. Maggie knows that at some point someone will give her a few treats so she is always very well behaved and patient. She loves it when a patient drops food onto the floor during their meal. She gladly cleans up so no sweeping is necessary!

After we make the rounds, we're off to the assisted living center to see the seniors. The seniors also love visits from the doggies. It sometimes really makes their day. Sometimes we are their only visitors and boy, they love having contact from others.

Really, we get as much out of our visits as the patients/staff/seniors do. Thanks, Rita, for establishing this wonderful program.

More later about my mentoring at the high school.....

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Limelight Lodge hosts Jill and Maggie

Maggie and Jill visited the Limelight Lodge Saturday, February 19th. As soon as I can figure out how to include the cute photos, I will. Sorry, this blogger is having some blogging issues! Maggie always enjoys the Limelight as she feels she's the "hotel dog" and visits all the guests in the lobby. Little Evan enjoyed his mom reading the Fraser book to him and as always I had to use will power to not eat the delicious homemade chocolate chip cookies they serve when we come to read to the children. Look for the cute photo soon!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

2010 Fraser Writing Contest

The Fraser Writing Contest 2010

I can't believe another year has passed and our 2010 Contest winners have been announced. We had over 65 story entries this past year. It is always a difficult thing to judge these stories as I feel each student has put their heart and soul into the stories.

I am honored to sponsor this contest year after year because I so believe in students' imagination and creativity to produce wonderful stories without it being required for school.

They really do it out of the love of writing.

We had full spreads in both The Snowmass Sun and The Aspen Times.

The contest is held at the Aspen Elementary School for 3rd and 4th graders.

This year's 3rd grade First Place Winner is Lauren Fox
This year's 4th grade First Place Winner is Cole Peterson.

The Snowmass Sun's article came out on December 22-28, 2010 edition and if you want to read the first place winners' stories, go to