Friday, October 29, 2010

Furball Friday: National Cat Day

Did you know today was National Cat Day? I was made aware of this glorious fact by Jama Rattigan, who is hosting a bunch of us authors and our feline companions on her blog today. I love reading about everyone's love affairs with their felines!

When Jama first asked me to participate, I thought getting a picture with George and Wilbur would be no problem. I quickly learned this was not the case:



While they are quite loving, snuggly cats, they do not like to be picked up at the same time. Nor do they like to pose when not in the mood. Finally I remembered I had this picture from their kittenhood:



It is the ONLY picture where they have permitted me to pose with them. Thanks guys.

Here is how George and Wilbur are celebrating this special day:


(Note: that is George's HIND paw hanging out of the bed. Ha.)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Disappearing Desmond book giveaway


To celebrate the release of my new book, for the first two weeks of November I'll be running a Disappearing Desmond book giveaway! Ten winners will get their very own copy sent to their doorstep.

All you have to do is find Desmond as he appears on various children's book blogs around the web and click on him before the contest disappears. From November 1st through November 14th he will appear on the following sites among others (I'll post a complete list next week):

The Blue Rose Girls
Wild Rose Reader
Jama Rattigan's Alphabet Soup
Brimful Curiosities
Katie's Literature Lounge
LadyD Books
Bloomabilities
Gracenotes
From Libby

(And of course here on Painting Bunnies)

Winners will be chosen at random on Nov. 15th and notified by email. Enter as many times as you like!

Monday, October 25, 2010

Desmond in The Wichita Eagle


"Disappearing Desmond," written and illustrated by Anna Alter (Knopf, ages 5-8, $17.99), is a charming look at shyness in children.

Desmond likes to disappear. Whether on the playground, in the classroom, or at the beach, he has always found a way to blend in as if he wasn't even around. Then Gloria joins his class. She loves to be noticed, and starts to notice Desmond, too. At first he is surprised, but discovers he likes being recognized.

Alter's story is warm and reassuring. Her characters don't judge each other, but find gentle ways to help each other grow. Young readers will love searching for the shy Desmond in the brightly colored acrylic illustrations and may notice other reluctant students as well.

Wallflowers and starlets alike will adore "Disappearing Desmond."

Other reviews here.

Friday, October 22, 2010

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Maira Kalman on Design*Sponge

There is a great blog post about Maira Kalman on Design*Sponge today (click here to see). Lots of great photos from her studio and a fantastic interview. Love her to pieces.

"Design*Sponge: How do you combat creative blocks? What tools do you use to keep your creativity flowing?

Maira Kalman: I walk a lot and look a lot. Just walking and looking seems to do the trick..."

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Trip to Muir Woods and Muir Beach










(thats me with the baby bump)

Monday, October 18, 2010

A lovely review of Disappearing Desmond by Toni Buzzeo


"In a delightfully simple story about a quirky young boy who would really rather not be noticed, author-illustrator Anna Alter offers a reassuring look at shyness and the encouragement that friendship can provide. Desmond, like all of the members of his family, is a genius at disappearing into the landscape or background of his surroundings. However, when a new extraordinarily outgoing classmate, Gloria, arrives, she not only spots Desmond in all of his disguises but invites him to join her in all manner of activities, causing Desmond to lose much of his shyness. This warm, reassuring story is the perfect book to use with groups of children as they coalesce at the beginning of a school year or a library storytime. To add to the fun, there is a lively activity guide to accompany the book with activities for both the classroom and the public library (and easily adaptable to a bookstore setting)."

~ Toni Buzzeo, MA, MLIS

Thanks Toni!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Disappearing Desmond Activity Kit


I am very excited to announce that Desmond now has his very own activity kit! Thanks to a lot of hard work by the very talented Kirsten Cappy at Curious City Doings, you can now download a fabulous group of activities to celebrate friendship and the fun of disguises that make you disappear.

There are cut-out disguises like these:



And activities for the classroom, library and art room to help Disappearing Desmonds everywhere gain confidence and all kinds of kids explore the concepts of disguise and camouflage.

Download the kit for free here!

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

The Giving Tree

I passed by this tree stump bench the other day and couldn't help but think of The Giving Tree...

Friday, October 08, 2010

Furball Friday

(Please note strange foot positioning on the front right paw)

Wednesday, October 06, 2010

More views of San Francisco

From our new living room window:



In the yard:



Sunset over the city:

Tuesday, October 05, 2010

Library of the Early Mind

For those of you in the Boston area, on October 19 at Harvard University there will be a premier screening of Library of the Early Mind, a documentary exploring children’s literature, directed by Edward J. Delaney and produced by Steven Withrow. Friends Grace and JJK are in it among others (there are too many to mention, but you can see a list of the cast here)!

The event is free and open to the public and will include book sale, reception with book signing, and Q&A with a panel from the film, including Lois Lowry, Lesléa Newman, Jerry Pinkney, Roger Sutton, and Padma Venkatraman. If I was in the area, I would definitely go check it out! Trailer and details below...



I love how Francoise Mouly says that young kids aren't looking for escape and fantasy so much as organization, so true. There is a lot of food for thought just in the trailer!

5:30 p.m.
Askwith Auditorium
Longfellow Hall, Appian Way
Harvard Graduate School of Education
Cambridge, MA 02138

Friday, October 01, 2010

Furball Friday

New city, new apartment, new bed for kitties. This one with room for two.