Wednesday, December 17, 2014

Merry Christmas!

In Amsterdam, summer 2014

This past summer, we took a trip to Paris and Amsterdam.  I always take a photo of Sam and Hugh before they go back to school, but in October, I realized I had forgotten to.  I went through my phone and found this photo of them standing on a bridge in Amsterdam.  I asked them both if I could use it and they said SURE!

Merry Christmas and have a lovely New Year!!

Monday, December 1, 2014

Sam's Service Assignment from the United States Naval Academy

Sam Fitzmaurice, home to do a little recruiting for the Naval Academy.

Sam and his roommates of four years, Ryan, Patrick and Tyler.

Last week, my oldest son, Sam, received his service assignment from the United States Naval Academy. He will be a Marine Pilot.  He will go to Quantico, Virginia, for training to be a Marine. When he is finished with that, he will then go on to Pensacola for two years so he can learn how to fly a plane. 

This is a twelve-year commitment because the military trains these pilots for three years, and then expects them to serve for another nine years.  It costs a lot of money to train the pilots.  I can see why they expect this kind of commitment. 

Sam will graduate from the Naval Academy on May 22, 2015.  The entire family is traveling to Maryland to see Sam stand on the open field and throw his hat in the air.  (My mother, Ann, her husband, John, my sister-in-law, Kathleen and her husband, Fred, my son, Hugh, my husband, Brian, my husband’s older brother, Tom, and his wife, Melinda, and my Uncle Hugo and his wife, Susie.)

Sam is on the far right, upper corner.

Before a tournament.

While attending school there, he has been the Captain of the Club Water Polo Team.   He has been the XO (second in charge) of Company 24.  He will graduate with a degree in Quantitative Economics.  (I don’t even know what that means…but he does.)  He is finishing his Capstone Project right now, a very long paper that explains things about the economy.  I don’t understand a thing in it because in college, I received my teaching credential, and after a few years of teaching, then went on to be a middle grade author. 

Sam says he has learned a lot, attending the Naval Academy.  He has made many life long friends.  And now, he is ready to start his new life, in May of 2015, as a Marine Pilot.

Wednesday, November 5, 2014

Rebecca Caudill Young Readers' Book Award

In February of 2014, I received an email from the Chair of the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award Committee, her name was Michelle Glatt, and she wrote:

As the Awards Chair for the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award Committee, I am pleased to tell you that your book, A Diamond in the Desert, has been selected for our 2015 master list. Congratulations! Please keep this information confidential until the list is posted at (most likely tonight or Monday morning).

I was thrilled to receive this email.  A DIAMOND IN THE DESERT has been my favorite book I have written so far.  I seem to get more emails about it from teachers and librarians asking if they can Skype call with me.  I have several schools that just want to talk about this book.  Next week, I am headed up to Chaminade Prep School, which is in Chatsworth, talk to the seventh grade students about the book, and then the week following, I will be doing a presentation at the Downey Public Library.

The link to the Rebecca Caudill website is here:

There are twenty other books on the list, which is here:

To follow the RCYRBA on twitter, you can go here:

I do not think my book will win, there are several other extremely well written books on this list, but I am very happy that it was nominated.