Wednesday, August 4, 2010

What Does It Mean To Be Present? -- Blog Book Tour

I’m thrilled to participate today in the Blog Book Tour for Little Pickle Press and their newly released children’s book What Does It Mean To Be Present?  This little treasure’s beautiful message, illustrated with whimsical brilliance, is capturing the fancy of children and parents alike.

(One Significant Moment followers are able to purchase What Does it Mean To Be Present at a discounted rate online.  Receive your coupon code below!)

Author Rana DiOrio's third book in the What Does it Mean... series is a refreshing, vibrant picture book aimed at children 4-8 years old, which engages all of the senses and explores answers to a deceptively simple question, “What does it mean to be present?”  Each colorful page reveals how to seize the moment and "be present," sharing ideas that will open important dialog between children and parents, and teachers and students.

In DiOrio's words, being present can mean “listening carefully when other people are speaking”; “focusing on what’s happening now instead of thinking about what’s next”; or “savoring each bite of your delicious food.” The book helps children judge what’s truly important in life.

The author's powerful messages resonate with adults, too.  As I read, I reflected on my own rushed, often hectic daily life.  It’s easy to forget to slow down,  to indulge the senses, and to listen to your heart sing.   Children learn to behave primarily through the example set by their care-givers.  This book is a wonderful tool for grown-ups who know there is no greater gift than teaching a child the importance of “closing your eyes and being still enough to hear your inner voice.”

DiOrio’s words come alive accompanied by the magic of Eliza Wheeler’s whimsical illustrations.  Through Wheeler's drawings, a story emerges of two children, a boy and a girl, as they move through their day.   Wheeler creates the book's wonderful sense of flow as the background scenery moves from setting to setting, with each turn of the page.    And children will be delighted to hunt on every page for the blue butterfly and the orange fruit, sometimes out in plain view, sometimes slightly hidden.   When Wheeler was asked about the butterfly in a recent interview, she said:

Whenever a butterfly is around people seem to stop to watch them. They are fragile, gentle creatures that don't usually live long, yet they bring such beauty while they are here. I included blue butterflies on each page because kids love to search within drawings and find repetition. Searching for the butterflies slows them down as they read the book, and helps them to be "present" and fully experience each page.

I love that!

I was completely enchanted by What Does It Mean to be Present? and I highly recommend it.  Be sure to seek out the other two titles in the series: What Does It Mean to be Green? and What Does It Mean to be Global?

An Offer Just For You

Rana DiOrio and the Little Pickle Press are offering One Significant Moment followers a great deal!  You can order online any two books in the series and a free poster of choice, all for just $29.95.  

Go HERE and type the coupon code MOMENT at check-out.

Grand Prize Give Away

You could win all three books in the What Does It Mean... series, plus four posters and a DabbaWalla backpack.  Click HERE for full details!

About the Author

Rana DiOrio was born in Providence, RI and grew up in a colorful Italian-American family. Her curiosity about the world began in kindergarten, while studying Western access to China and, obviously, panda bears! She has written her way through life – as a student, a lawyer, an investment banker, a private equity investor - and now as an author of children’s picture books and owner of Little Pickle Press.
Rana’s motivation for writing What Does It Mean To Be Present? was deciding that she had a Blackberry® addiction and hoping that the best cure would be to write about how best to live without it. Her interests include reading nonfiction, dreaming, effecting positive change, and, of course, practicing yoga. She lives in Belvedere, California with her husband and their three Little Pickles.

About the Illustrator

Eliza Wheeler, an award winning children's book illustrator, was born into a family of musicians, artists, and teachers, and was raised in the north woods of Wisconsin. As a toddler, she adored crayons, and drawing has been her favorite creative outlet ever since. Eliza received her BFA in Graphic Design at the University of Wisconsin-Stout; shortly thereafter, she abandoned the mouse and embraced pen on paper to pursue a career in illustration. She began studying illustration in earnest and fell in love all over again with the picture books of her childhood. Now, Eliza has found her true calling — illustrating for the children’s book market and creating illustrated gifts for her online gallery.

For the schedule of all the blogs on this Virtual Book tour, click HERE.  Don't miss tomorrow's tour stop at It's Not All Flowers and Sausages.

Thanks to Dani Greer at Blog Book Tours for inviting me to participate today.  And thanks to Alex Cavanaugh for thinking of me and passing my name to Dani!