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Thursday, October 9, 2014

Free Printable Life Cycle of Pumpkin Mini Book

Here's a free Life Cycle of a Pumpkin Mini Book posted at Teachers Pay Teachers.
This little book easily folds, with no staples required and it prints on a single 8.5x11 page.
This little book is ideal for 2nd graders, but it can be fun for all ages.

http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Life-Cycle-of-a-Pumpkin-Printable-Mini-Book-348738

On my Smart Printables site I posted:
Free Family Tree
http://carolbrookebooks.wordpress.com/2011/10/18/family-tree-activity/

Jack-o'-Lantern Art and Writing http://carolbrookebooks.wordpress.com/2011/10/21/my-jack-o-lantern-art-and-writing/

Trick-or-Treat Ghosts Mini Book and Puppets
http://carolbrookebooks.wordpress.com/2011/10/27/my-trick-or-treat-ghosts-mini-book-and-puppets/

My laptop and computer are no longer functional! I miss my Adobe Illustrator. I am typing this post on my 
iPhone, which I wish was easier to do. My Smart Printables site has more of the work I created after learning Adobe 
Illustrator. I will be up-dating this site more when I get a new computer.

Happy Halloween!

If you haven't seen the Personalized Sight Words Flash Cards I made, here they are.
http://www.teacherspayteachers.com/Product/Printable-Kindergarten-Dolch-Sight-Words-Flash-Cards-Kit-Personalized-Princess-348990

:) Carol Brooke

Friday, October 3, 2014

My Dreams are Dead! Have You Ever Felt that Way?


Last night I said those words. I never thought that I would say that. I've always been tougher on the inside than what people measured me up to be... But too much has happened in my life. I just feel like all the art and writing I've done through the years has given me so much pain... Having my name taken off of around 100 blogs and printables, ideas conceived by me being sold without royalties distributed to me, and  a very time consuming product I designed never being created because the publisher realized the design was too expensive to print after all. I have decided that I will give no more until I have an agent. I need an agent. I will not allow myself to be taken advantage of any longer. That's why I've been keeping all my art and writing to myself over the past three years. Of course I had a baby and a preschooler to care for, but something that used to trust has now died. I had plenty of ideas to share, but I didn't. I had people who wanted my work, but without trust I couldn't give.

I reached my breaking point last night after my husband got back to give me a "break" to paint
something for the SCBWI Agent's Day. I was trying to paint some dolphin, but it looks bad. BTW, I can't remember the last time I had time alone before that. So, getting in a painting mood wasn't easy with a puppy barking all crazy in the background. (We got a new puppy that likes to use people as chew toys, which apparently they grow out of IF you train them. I wish I would have known that first.) Anyway, when I was putting on my pajamas our very active and smart 3 year old daughter decided to run downstairs and open up the paint I put away and paint all over the couch. Being exhausted and then having to hurry and clean is hard. I felt sorry for myself and started to cry. She
told me that mommies are not supposed to cry, only babies. I did want to stop crying, but I couldn't. She has very rarely seen me cry.


The next morning (today), my darling daughters helped me find a pen and pencil drawing of Toucons in Love I can bring to the SCBWI Agent's Day. My older daughter mentioned how much she loved that drawing, which I had forgotten about. It wasn't easy to find. My daughters were so cute. They started praying that we would find it. We just moved 3 times in 9 months and there are still boxes in the garage. They jumped around in the empty boxes as I tore open each one hoping to find my drawing. Fortunately, we found it. I then took a pic of if with my iPhone and made business
cards while also taking care of my children and the teething puppy. I am an old mom. I should have had kids earlier. I need more energy. Since I am still alive, my dreams must be alive, too. Otherwise, I wouldn't bother to write this.

When I was a child I didn't wish to be an artist and writer. I was an artist and writer, and I still am. I just need a really honest and nice agent to sell it to the best place for it. I have bills to pay. I have donated and given away my work for many years now. I still want to give and donate, but I also want to be paid.

I had a very hard life as a child. Do you see those awful bangs? That is only one reason why I was sad. Who wouldn't be sad with a haircut like that? LOL, I was so happy that I won the art contest because like I said, my life was rotten. My parents divorced and I lived in a bad neighborhood. The good news is that I remember winning a trip to the art store because I got the blue ribbon. I could hardly believe it when I saw it next to my butterfly drawing. I picked out beautiful colored pencils in a metal box. I used to line them up in rainbow order. I still love doing that.

So, what have I learned from all this?
Even when I have crooked bangs and a horrible life I have to draw and write. I just won't use paint for a while. I'll stick to colored pencils and pen. I do feel so lucky to have my family. I appreciate my loving and caring husband, daughters, sisters, mom, nieces and nephews. Thank you for believing in me. I love you all. Thank you, My Heavenly Father, for answering our prayer to find my drawing.

I hope this post helps you remember not to ever give up. I'll keep reading it myself. I need occassional reminders. You know what's really amazing about our dreams? The dreams we were given are not really about us. Over the years, I'm beginning to see that when we share what we love it helps people in amazing ways we would never expect.