Wednesday, July 11, 2012

One of my favorite fringe benefits of owning a bookstore is spending time with authors.  We had a fabulous visit with author/illustrator Nancy Carlson this morning.  Nancy is the first "real" author I ever heard speak, in about 1988 when I was teaching in Lincoln.  Nancy was in Seward on that trip to Nebraska, too.  I still have an autographed copy of I Like Me!" from that visit, and hearing her read it again today was a treat.  I read it so many times to my classes and my own kids that I could have almost recited it with her.

I had the honor of having lunch with Nancy, too.  She told me about her travels over the years, including a trip to Saudi Arabia to talk about her books.  What an experience!  Hopefully, now she can fondly tell others about her stay at the Liberty House Bed & Breakfast here in Seward.  It's not as exotic as Saudi Arabia, but still a change from her home in Minneapolis.

We're glad that the group from St. John's CDC was able to join us for this fun storytime and drawing lesson with Nancy.  Thanks to everyone else who attended, too.  If you weren't able to make it this morning, stop by the store to see the picture of Harriet that Nancy drew for us.  Harriet is the golden retriever hero of Nancy's books.  Anyone who likes goldens has to be a good person.

I've posted more photos from this morning's storytime on our facebook page, and we do have a few signed books remaining.  

Thanks, Nancy Carlson for a fun morning, and I hope you enjoy the rest of your week in Nebraska.

Sunday, July 1, 2012

We had great fun at our summer camp last week.  Our theme for the week was "WE LOVE BOOKS," and we showed that love by reading and writing books, creating and learning things from books, even making things out of books--with a strong warning NOT to do this at home without permission!

Here are a few photos highlighting events and special guests from the week.  If you'd like to see all photos from the week, visit us on facebook.  To print photos, send me an email, and I'll share the picasa web album with you.

Thanks to all who participated.  Camp is one of our favorite weeks of the year, because we get to know so many wonderful kids and their families.  Also thanks to Cheryl and Stephanie for running camp activities and keeping the store open at the same time, and to our volunteer helpers, Hailey and Molly Newburn, Megan Runyan, and Emma Orwen.  You're all wonderful!

 Terese Svoboda, author of Bohemian Girl, kicked off our summer events with a signing and reading in early June.  Bohemian Girl is set in Nebraska in 1861.  It's not a pretty story of life on the prairie, but it's an intriguing one with characters you'll care about and a storyline full of adventure.

 Dr. Jason Summa also visited Chapters, and he read his favorite book to read to his own kids, Good Night, Good Knight, to a rapt audience.  After Dr. Summa read to the group, all the kids made posters advertising their own favorites.  You may have seen them in our windows and aisles last week!

Tim and Grace worked hard on their posters!
 On Tuesday, Seward's own Charlie Volnek, author of Bethany's favorite book, Horse Called Trouble, talked to our group about writing books and how to think of ideas.  Then, the kids wrote their own books, which they shared with the group.

 Tara found a quiet place to write--in the closet.
 Xander worked hard on a book about stormchasers.
Eating "s'more books" was as much fun as reading and writing books!

In the afternoon, Anna Meyer, who creates the blank journals we sell at Chapters, gave a lesson on book binding.  We each made a book and learned how "real" books are assembled.
 Wednesday, we cooked and created, finding inspiration in books!  Like the little red hen who baked a pizza, we baked pizzas, too.  And in the afternoon, we made book bags out of blue jeans.

 Thursday's camp was all about the things we can learn from books, such as how to make balloon animals, Lego creations, paper airplanes, microwave oatmeal bars, and much more.  Isabelle made "finger friends," and Molly helped our campers make balloon animals, while Jordan made a telescope for space exploration.

 And, finally, on Friday, we made things OUT OF books.  It pained us to do it, but we cut off the covers, tore out the pages, and folded, duct taped, and stapled discarded books into amazing new creations.  Doesn't Martin look pleased with his book creation?  Mackenzie and Tessa concentrated very hard on their projects, as did all the campers.  Stephanie's "wordy birds" and "thinking caps" were a big hit, too.

 Where's Waldo?
He was at Chapters last week, and he's right here in Seward in July!
Find him at 21 businesses around town and win great prizes!
for details.