Be Gone, Dreadful Cold!

If you’ve been paying attention to my past posts, you know I have been looking forward to the Hundred Ways of Thinking Conference in Vancouver, B.C. that happens Thursday, Friday and Saturday. https://authorcynthiamackey.com/2020/02/17/counting-down-to-hundred-ways-of-thinking/

And of course, as timing would have it, I’ve come down with a nasty cold just days before the event. Sigh.

Green Tea with honey to soothe the throat

So now to make the cold go away as fast as possible…

I have done the following:

  • – 3 vitamin C boost drinks with 1,000 mg of vitamin C in each one
  • -warm salt water gargle twice
  • -breathing steam in the mornings
  • -eating oranges
  • -spoonfuls herbal cough syrup ( I had run out so I bought some today)
  • -drinking tons of tea

And I’m out of days to get better as tomorrow I get to take the ferry! Living on an island means lots of ferry travel. Here’s hoping for a restful sleep tonight.

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Have a wonderful day!

Daily Gratitude Practice

About six months ago, I switched from my regular position as Early Childhood Educator and Manager of a preschool to casual Early Childhood Educator at several different child care programs. I made the switch because of burnout and because there is a huge demand here in Victoria for qualified ECE subs so I knew I would never be short of work.

When I worked every day in my program, I wasn’t feeling appreciated. I am sure that my work was appreciated but I just didn’t get that feeling each day. Maybe because I was overwhelmed and burned out, I couldn’t see the appreciation anymore.

Here’s a rare photo of me. I prefer being on the other side of the camera!

So how are things now? Six months later, I often am greeted with a “we’re so glad you’re here today!” or even a hug from the staff, who know that if I’m not there, their day could be a lot more difficult. Parents whose children I have only worked with for a couple of weeks have given me gifts. I feel I am making a difference and that’s important to me.

Aside from casual, I also have added a daily gratitude practice to my life. Every single night, without fail, I sit down and write five things for which I am grateful. Often they are really little things. But they matter.

Here’s a sample list from my journal a couple of weeks ago:

  • beach walk with preschoolers
  • “I love you, Teacher Cindy.” said one of the preschoolers
  • bakery treats
  • sketching time
  • fireside chat with the family

If you are reading this post and hoping to change your life for the better and if you don’t already have a daily gratitude practice…. start! I highly recommend it! It takes me only little time each night because throughout the day I pay attention to all the things that make me feel grateful. Most nights in five minutes or less, I’ve got my list done. And I find that even when I have more difficult days, I am much more easily able to stay positive.

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Thanks so much for reading my blog! Hope you’ll visit again. Have a wonderful week!

Royal Conservatory of Music: Benefits of Music Education

Royal Conservatory of Music research showed that the brains of musically trained individuals had more grey matter, had stronger neural connections, higher IQ, better memory, better attention, and better motor coordination.

Benefits of music education included

  • improved language abilities
  • increased emotional resilience
  • increased empathy
  • increased attention span and focus
  • increased self-confidence

These are some great reasons to advocate for music instruction in public schools. Keep the music programs going! There’s plenty of research to show this is a good idea.

Royal Conservatory of Music Paper on the Benefits of Music Education https://rcmusic-kentico-cdn.s3.amazonaws.com/rcm/media/main/documents/about%20us/rcm_musiceducation

Victoria Art Gallery: Family Sunday!

Did you know that the Victoria Art Gallery features Family Sundays? https://aggv.ca/events/family-sunday-30/ The program happens on the third Sunday of the month and provides an opportunity for hands-on art making activities for all ages.

Art meets science with food color, dish soap and homogenized milk.

Sunday, January 19th from 2 pm to 4 pm at the Victoria Art Gallery at 1040 Moss Street.

What do you like to do on Sundays? Share in the comments!

Cover Reveal!

Drumroll please…. time for the cover reveal of our illustrated early chapter book titled the Lullaby Monsters coming in 2020!

Stay tuned for more information on pre-orders, book swag, release date and more! Go to my facebook page to sign up for my email list and receive notifications. You’ll receive a free downloadable resources for teachers and parents.

Synopsis: In this night time adventure, big sister Kelsey is always her brother’s hero. She bravely helps with lost teddy bears, scraped knees and favourite picnic foods. But when Thomas cannot sleep because of the lullaby monsters, Kelsey isn’t sure if she can help. Then Thomas’ precious lullaby box is stolen and Kelsey must face her monstrous fear. In doing so, she discovers that the lullaby monsters are a lot like Thomas.

Illustrations in progress by Paula Nasmith

The cave you fear to enter holds the treasure you seek.” -Joseph Campbell

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Book Reviews Help Authors and Readers

Did you know that most authors rely on book reviews? Book reviews make the book more visible to the reader. They help with sales. They help guide readers towards making an appropriate choice. It gives the reader an idea of what the book will be about and who might enjoy the book. If there are enough reviews it will actually help the amazon ranking. https://www.ingramspark.com/blog/the-value-of-book-reviews-for-indie-authors

Reading Pile

Many people read books and never give any feedback at all. If you read something and you really love it; then its worth taking the time to write a review. You can post to Goodreads or even send it directly to the author. You might even get a direct thank you note from the author!

You can see my book reviews on Goodreads and I also share some here on my blog. I’m currently reading The Color of Our Sky by Amita Trasi, and I’m deliberately savouring it rather than rushing through. What are you reading right now? Do you have any favourite picture books? Share in the comments!

The Power of Picture Books

Early interactions are important for young children ages 1 to 6 years and picture books or board books can bring together adults and children for a cozy experience that can strengthen relationships and prepare children for school and success in life. I love the power of picture books and this is a big reason why I write them.

The Canadian Paediatric Society has a program called Read, Speak, Sing that encourages parents to read to babies right from birth. Check it out! https://www.cps.ca/en/issues-questions/literacy

The Maisy series of picture books by Lucy Cousins was a favourite for my children. I could read those daily and they’d never be tired of them. They were a first choice at the library, and when my son learned to read, he would often read them to his younger sister.

What books do your children love to hear over and over? Share in the comments!

The Lullaby Monsters by Cynthia Mackey and Paula Nasmith

In this night time adventure, big sister Kelsey is always her brother’s hero. She bravely helps with lost teddy bears, scraped knees, and favourite picnic foods. But when Thomas can’t sleep because of the lullaby monsters, Kelsey isn’t sure she can help, especially since monsters are the one thing she fears.  When Thomas’ precious lullaby box is stolen, Kelsey must face her monstrous fear and in doing so, she discovers that the lullaby monsters are a lot like Thomas.

The Lullaby Monsters are Coming in March 2020!

After a delay in the cover design, we now have The Lullaby Monsters nearly ready for publication, thanks to Paula Nasmith.

Would you like an advance review copy? Contact us to learn how to receive one.

authorcynthiamackey@gmail.com

Book Cover News!

After a long delay, I finally have news on the next book cover. I had asked people to let me know which image they prefer for the back cover. I got some feedback through my blog, instagram, facebook and in person. https://wordpress.com/block-editor/post/authorcynthiamackey.com/1905

Monsters
Bicycle
Kelsey and Thomas

And a decision has been made! The front cover is still top secret but the back cover will be….

Kelsey and Thomas!

In more cover news, the cover file is now officially complete. And our new release date is set for March 2020!

Synopsis:

In this night time adventure, big sister Kelsey is always her brother’s hero. She bravely helps with lost teddy bears, scraped knees, and favourite picnic foods. But when Thomas can’t sleep because of the lullaby monsters, Kelsey isn’t sure she can help, especially since monsters are the one thing she fears. When Thomas’ precious lullaby box is stolen, Kelsey must face her monstrous fear and in doing so, she discovers that the lullaby monsters are a lot like Thomas.