Superconference 2017

Brian Deines and me, at our signing.


Ted Staunton, me, Brian, Gail Winskill and John Spray

With Dave Atkinson


Awesome Mississauga visit

Loved my day with San Lorenzo Ruiz students last week. Such a pleasure to be able to present to every student in the school! I surprised one student who could read Portuguese with her own Portuguese edition of Stolen Child. With FDK and grade 1, I did 30 minute storytelling sessions for each, with When Mama Goes to Work. In the book, moms and kids have special bags when they’re going to work or school or day care. I told the kids that I’m a mom too, and I showed them my special bag — really a giant rolling box filled with my books. They had lots of fun pushing it around.

Adrift At Sea was for grades 2&3, then the WWII trilogy for the grade 4-6, then in more depth for grades 7-8.

Storytelling with When Mama Goes to Work

Adrift at Sea Brantford book launch!

A surprise snow storm didn’t keep people away from coming to the Station Cafe on Dec 6th. We had a packed house!

Tuan came with his entire family and we all autographed the books that were sold that night. Proceeds of the event were donated to the Brant Anglican Churches Support for Syrian Refugees. Sweets were provided by the Brant Anglican Churches refugee committee. The Family Literacy Committee of Brant, Kids Can Fly and the St. George Girl Guides hosted the event. Many thanks to Mike Tutt and the Station Cafe for the great venue.

Here I am with the amazing Sharon Brooks of Kids Can Fly. Sharon was the master organizer of the launch. Sharon is dedicated to improving the lives of the kids of Brant (she has my vote for being a woman selected for Canadian currency!)

It’s all about Charlie

CPO_prop_800My husband Orest has a passion for flying and we have a Piper Dakota fondly known as Charlie. For the past number of summers, we’ve taken trips in Charlie to the Maritimes and New England, but this summer, we took him all the way to the west coast.

My part was easy. I sat back and watched my husband do all of the flight planning, plane maintenance, figuring out which airport and FBO Charlie would sleep at each night, and which city and hotel we’ll sleep at each night. My job? Reading a book, taking pictures, not getting nervous. We left on July 25th. Our first stop was Green Bay Wisconsin:

Orest wanted to go to the EAA AirVenture Fly-In. We stayed in Green Bay and he drove in.

I had been working on a novel that I desperately wanted to finish before our holiday started, so I was happy for the quietness of the hotel room that day in order to do some final polishing. From Green Bay, we flew to Winnipeg:

In case you’ve never noticed, Winnipeg is very far away from Green Bay. And there was weather on July 27th — a cluster of lightning near Oshkosh, plus other weather along the way so we did some diversions. We also stopped in Duluth for more fuel so we’d be prepared in case there were more diversions.

You can see the weather front and the lightning (red) on this monitor.
You can see the weather front and the lightning (red) on this monitor.

We got into Winnipeg around 5pm.


Edmonton Family Reunion

One of the main reasons for this trip was to attend a Forchuk family reunion in Edmonton. We’re all descendants of George and Anna Forchuk:


Here are their children:


My father Marsh (far left) is the last of that generation.


And here we are, after a hearty dinner at A Taste of Ukraine. How wonderful it was to reconnect with cousins and family!

This is me and Orest, overlooking the banks of the North Saskatchewan River: