Kids Design Queen Mary Ships on Memorial Day Weekend

Here’s just a sampling of the work of the creative kids in San Antonio!  Lots of young readers stopped by to take part in the book signing/kids crafts at San Antonio’s

Barnes and Noble at San Pedro Crossing on Sunday, May 26. With the release of my new WWII era picturebook WELCOME TO AMERICA, CHAMP! and in observance of Memorial Day weekend, kids had the opportunity to decorate their own ships.  Much of WELCOME TO AMERICA, CHAMP! takes place on the Queen Mary, an impressive

Postcards of the Queen Mary

ship (larger than the Titanic) that played an important part in WWII.  Some kids based their designs on the real Queen Mary — we had plenty of postcards and the lovely book illustrations by Doris Ettlinger as examples.  Other young designers chose to go with their own whimsical motifs.  No matter the approach, the results — as you can see –were amazing!

Memorial Day Weekend Event!

Join Catherine Stier for a Memorial Day Weekend Book Signing/Kids’ Crafts
Sunday, May 26, 2013
2 – 3 p.m.
Barnes and Noble at San Pedro Crossing
321 NW Loop 410 #104
San Antonio, TX.

Have fun with patriotic crafts and meet Catherine Stier, author of:

BARNABY THE BEDBUG DETECTIVE (2013), TODAY ON ELECTION DAY, IF I RAN FOR PRESIDENT (Editor’s Choice Award, Library Media Connection), IF I WERE PRESIDENT (100 Best Books, IRA Los Angeles), BUGS IN MY HAIR ?! (Best Children’s Books of the Year, Bank Street College of Education) and THE TERRIBLE SECRETS OF THE TELL-ALL CLUB (Teacher’s Pick, Scholastic Instructor Magazine)
And her newest release, WELCOME TO AMERICA, CHAMP!

By Catherine Stier, Illustrated by Doris Ettlinger
In this hope-filled WWII and immigration story, Stier and Ettlinger present an extraordinary historical event – the “Brides and Babies” voyages of 1946 – as experienced by one spirited English boy who sails on the Queen Mary with his war bride mother for a new life in America.

“Heartfelt watercolor illustrations bring to life the anxiety and tentative joys of this unique historical situation.” Booklist

See you there!

Launching a Book with a Tea Party

What’s the best way to launch a new children’s book set in WWII England and on the ship the Queen Mary?  With a British-themed Tea Party, of course!
To celebrate the release of the new historical fiction picture book WELCOME TO AMERICA, CHAMP! (beautifully illustrated by Doris Ettlinger) friends and family joined together for tea sandwiches, scones, fruits and sweets catered by The Madhatter’s Tea Shop.  And British tea, of course!

Professional Storyteller Veronica Gard (known as “Your English Storyteller”) offered a lovely and lilting tale, relating the family stories that inspired the new picture book.  Ms. Gard, who was born in England during WWII, also taught me the proper way to make tea in my grandmother’s heirloom teapot.  And it does make a delicious difference!

Souvenirs from the Queen Mary gift shops – including a Queen Mary Captain Teddy Bear and boxes of Queen Mary tea and postcards – decorated tables, cabinets and counters.

For children, there was a tea set designed for bubble-blowing spread on a child-sized outdoor table, and a “design a royal crown” craft.

Thank you to our friends, Raul and Annie, who provided for us many lovely photos from the day – including those shown here.

 Thank you, also, to the family members who traveled across the country to join us – my parents and my Aunt Pat.  Finally, I appreciate the SCBWI-SWTX board members and all the friends who stopped by to celebrate that day.