Happy Labor Day Weekend!

“Oh, look, Red. It’s Labor Day! The annual day set aside to honor human mothers for the nine strenuous months of pregnancy and arduous hours of Labor to finally deliver a newborn baby,” Cinnamon Charlie observed, reading the headline in the ‘Squirrelly World’ morning newspaper.

“I don’t think that’s the meaning behind this day, Charlie,” Little Red Bear corrected. “They have a whole different day to celebrate human mothers. It’s called ‘Mother’s Day’, in the month of May each year.”

“It says so right here in the newspaper, Red — Labor Day. What else could it be if not to honor human mothers in the Labor and Delivery rooms today?”

“Well, Charlie. This Labor Day honors the labor movement as a whole and the contributions that Workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of the country.”

“What about mothers? Aren’t they workers, too?”

“It honors mothers in a way too, I suppose,” Little Red Bear added, thinking more about it. “Part of Labor Day honors those mothers like Rosie the Riveter who left their homes to work in factories and helped save the country during one of the most difficult periods in history, the Second World War. The American labor force and the role of mothers in the homes were never the same after that, as women had joined the labor force permanently, helping to make the country even stronger going forward.”

“So Labor Day is about Mothers then, Red,” Cinnamon Charlie chimed in, beaming and reveling in having made a point.

“I suppose it is, Charlie. I suppose it is. And rightfully so,” Little Red Bear agreed.

Little Red’s Bears Handpicked Recipes, a regular Sunday morning feature, is taking a break in honor of Labor Day while remembering those still displaced and suffering the effects of Hurricane Harvey in Texas and Louisiana, and will return next week.

In the meantime, we wish everyone a Safe and Happy Labor Day! —  Jim   (and Red!)


This is a purposefully non-monetized, ad-free site to be able to offer the most enjoyable reading and viewing experience for everyone, with all content freely shared, and generates no income to offset the costs of maintaining and operating. If you enjoy your visits and time with us, Join our Patron Community today. Patrons help my friend Little Red Bear and me to continue this as an ad-free site,  to keep improving, and expanding our writing to others. 


“I was a Rosie the Riveter. I’m really proud of that.” – Ruth Duccini

Holiday- Labor Day 3

“Genius begins with great works; labor alone finishes them.” – Joseph Joubert


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

                                                 “One machine can do the work of fifty ordinary men.                                              No machine can do the work of one extraordinary man.” — Elbert Hubbard   


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“Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes — Labor Day Specials!”

Growing up in the 50’s and 60’s, the end of summer was marked by the Labor Day Holiday Weekend, with the following Tuesday always the first day back to school. Times have changed, with so many school districts now restarting early to mid-August.

So, Little Red Bear thought it might be a good idea today to dedicate this week’s recipe selections to the coming Labor Day Holiday next week, in order to give you the week to gather ingredients and be ready ahead of time for the weekend.

Our inbox overflowed with autumn pumpkin recipes this week, and “Mickey’ Not-So-Scary Halloween Party” already started at Disney a few days ago, but we are going to hold off on autumn things in lieu of one more taste of summer before heading into the annual Fall Pumpkin Rites of Passage.

If you are new to our Sunday morning recipe sharing and missed the first Little Red Bear Recipes Post explaining what we are doing, simply tap on the link to check it out.

So, in honor of Labor Day next weekend and the end of the summer season, here are some notable summer recipes, a few sides and a few treats, that we found to savor the flavors of Summer one more time!

Apple Cranberry and Almond Cole Slaw

This cole slaw is made with Gala Apples, Cranberries, and Almonds, using mostly Greek Yogurt instead of mayonnaise for a healthy and delicious twist on an old favorite. And incorporating apples and cranberries, this slaw will transfer right into the coming fall and holiday seasons, as well.

Apple Cranberry and Almond Cole Slaw Recipe

Barbeque Spice Roasted Potato Nuggets

These Potato Nuggets, seasoned with your favorite barbeque dry rub, are a perfect accompaniment to any dish coming off the grill — steaks, burgers, barbequed chicken, and more.

Barbeque Spice Roasted Potato Nuggets Recipe

Berry Feta Spinach Salad with Strawberry Poppy Seed Dressing

If not up for Cole Slaw, this salad makes a beautiful and delicious dish for company, with festive strawberries, blueberries, and raspberries.  Oh — and did I mention that it also features Candied Pistachios?

Berry Feta Spinach Salad Recipe

Cucumber Cream Cheese Sandwiches

Okay, so your Labor Day Weekend plans don’t include stay-at-home barbeques or dinners with friends. You’re going to be out and about enjoying the last holiday weekend of summer. Awesome — we’re right there with you! So how about some lighter fare?  These delightfully fresh Cucumber Cream Cheese Sandwiches perfectly fit the bill and are amazingly good.  Little Red Bear and I used to do sort of the same thing on Ritz crackers — a spread of cream cheese, a cucumber slice and sprinkle of dill weed on top for appetizer snacks. Little Red Bear and I skipped the Seasoned Salt in the recipe, but kicked it up a notch by stirring a packet of Good Seasons’ Zesty Italian Dressing Mix into the cream cheese first.  Oh, so good. The dill weed is what makes it! But if you do not have fresh dill weed, no worries. The dried dill weed seasoning is still amazing with this.

Cucumber Cream Cheese Sandwiches Recipe

Red, White & Blue Cheesecake Cake

Company is coming for dinner and what to do for dessert?  A cheesecake? Or a traditional cake? Around these parts we love both, so why not put them together? This patriotic colored Red, White & Blue Cheesecake Cake will be a holiday showstopper any time of year! And it is simply a layer of cheesecake sandwiched in between tinted layers of vanilla cake.

Red, White & Blue Cheesecake Cake Recipe

Patriotic Flower Pretzel Bites

Speaking of patriotic holiday themes, Little Red Bear and I both loved these Patriotic Flower Pretzel Bites as wonderful side treats for parties and get-togethers.  But here is where we got creative. With the recipe calling for Red, White & Blue Holiday M&Ms to make the flowers, we figured that we could use any holiday-themed M&Ms for a neat holiday side dish treat any time of year — the Halloween mix colors for a Halloween party, blue and white for Hanukkah, the green and red blend for Christmas, red and white for Valentines, and so on. So while this recipe is patriotic themed, it could be adapted for just about any holiday party or event. It’s also a recipe that the kids would have a blast making up for you, too! And, have you ever enjoyed the white chocolate covered pretzels?  If not, you’re in for a treat. And if so, well — you know what we’re talking about here!

Patriotic Flower Pretzel Bites

Indoor S’Mores

S’Mores are a summertime and autumn favorite, roasting the marshmallows over an open fire or the remaining hot coals from the barbeque. But what to do if it rains?  Make them indoors, of course!  Little Red Bear loved this recipe because it let him have yet another treat to make up in his cast iron skillet.  This is a baked-in-the-oven S’Mores Dip for dipping the graham crackers into while staying dry out of the rain. No reason to miss out on the S’Mores due to inclement weather any longer, and the kids will love the great dipping action and fun! But a caution — don’t let anyone lick the leavings from the skillet until it’s properly cooled down though.  Ain’t that right, Red?

Indoor S’Mores Recipe

As a bonus, if wanting to stick to a Patriotic theme and to keep in mind for next year’s Memorial Day and Independence Day holidays, here is a fun recipe for an American Flag S’Mores Dip, too. The marshmallow colors come from red, white and blue sprinkles which form a crystallized coating when baked in the oven. The recipe also includes a link to a Rainbow S’Mores Dip, prepared in the same manner, perfect for Easter and other times.

Fresh Glazed Peach Pie

I was able to get some fresh peaches from the local market this week and they were delicious, so thought this Fresh Glazed Peach Pie a perfect late summer treat.  The glaze, using peach-flavored Jello, works to keep the peaches fresh. This recipe is perfect for Little Red Bear and me, using a prepared pie crust to keep it simple and quick for the holiday weekend.  And as readers are aware, Little Red Bear is a biscuit champion, but cannot make a decent pie crust to save his soul. And with an achy back, I don’t want to bother.  So the prepared crusts work great for us!

Fresh Glazed Peach Pie Recipe

If you enjoy these new recipe features, please tap the Like button below and feel free to Comment and let us know, and we will be on the lookout for more interesting and fun recipes to share with you each Sunday morning as we go along.  And remember, all of these recipes are added each week to our “Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes” board on Pinterest for you to access anytime.

If you have a family favorite or vintage recipe that you would like to share, please snap a photo and send it along to us. We’ll be happy to add it in for the benefit of others.

Thanks as always for spending part of your day with us!  And as we head off into a new week, paraphrasing what Henry Ford said — the person who thinks they can and the person who thinks they can’t are both right.  Which will you be?   – Jim (and Red!)


This is a purposefully non-monetized, ad-free blog to be able to offer the most pleasurable reading and viewing experience for everyone, with all content freely shared, and generates no income to offset the costs of maintaining and operating. If you enjoy your visits here, please consider Becoming a Patron of this site and my writing work, helping my friend Little Red Bear and me to be able to continue improving and expanding our outreach to others. 


                         “One must maintain a little bit of summer, even in the middle of winter.”                   – Henry David Thoreau

Family Times — Together Times — The Best Times!


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly, Multi-generational Stories and Fun for All Ages!
~ About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends ~

“Good food is always best when shared with good friends and family.” – Little Red Bear


“Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes #2”

This is an interesting time of year. With so many schools back in session, it seems as though summer should be over, yet we are still two weeks away from Labor Day Weekend, a holiday traditionally marking the end of the summer season for many.  So a bit of a confused mix right now of Summer/Back to School/Anticipating Autumn sense and feel about it. The recipes that Little Red Bear and I came across kind of reflected that confused state, with some summer recipes still holding on and many fall themed making their appearance now. We’re going to hold back on all the Pumpkin Everythings for a little while longer.

If you missed the first Little Red Bear Recipes Post last week explaining what we are doing with Sunday morning recipe sharing, simply tap on the link to check it out.

Here are some of the recipes which caught our eye this week, with a few summer holdouts and one notable autumn dish featuring one of our fall favorites, butternut squash . . . . . .

Healthier Skillet Peach Crisp

Little Red Bear and I look for any excuse to use our favorite cast iron skillets and this recipe fits the bill perfectly.  A summery treat, using fresh peaches while they are still around.  The topping is made from healthy Old-fashioned Rolled Oats.  A wonderful summer treat served plain or with an ice cream or whipped topping to make it extra special.

Healthier Skillet Peach Crisp Recipe

Iced Cinnamon Raisin Bread

Cinnamon Raisin Bread is a breakfast favorite and snack here all thru the year, and Iced Cinnamon Raisin Bread is even better! I rarely purchase bread, making all of my own. This recipe calls for King Arthur Flour if available in your area, which is the flour I solely use and recommend for the very best, consistent results.  In addition, the recipe maker’s name is Mavis Butterfield.  We have a town in the Little Red Bear stories named Butterfield, where Myra Cookson recently opened her Pie Pantry & Goodies Shoppe as readers of the “Pine Holler Christmas” story know. So, between the King Arthur Flour note and the name of Butterfield, this wonderful Iced Cinnamon Bread Recipe just seemed like a perfect fit.

Iced Cinnamon Raisin Bread Recipe

Fried Tomato BLT Sliders

One of our favorite summer sandwiches is a BLT (bacon, lettuce, and tomato) sandwich. This recipe takes it to another level, incorporating fried tomato slices using either remaining fresh tomatoes still coming in from the late summer garden, or any remaining green tomatoes for an especially Southern touch to this sandwich.  A touch of garlic powder and cayenne pepper (if you like) add another layer of flavor!

Fried Tomato BLT Sliders Recipe

Perfect Roasted Butternut Squash

Little Red Bear and I love butternut squash and roasting vegetables, so this recipe caught our eye, especially with the fall season approaching around the corner.  Using only a few pantry staple ingredients, this recipe is both simple to prepare and delicious!

Perfect Roasted Butternut Squash Recipe

White Chocolate Caramel Pecan Fudge

This recipe has so many magical words in the title for Little Red Bear that it must be amazing — White Chocolate + Caramel + Pecans.  Wow!  This would be a wonderful fudge treat for both a summer Labor Day BBQ gathering or for coming holiday dinner and party buffets. This fudge simply looks like a “Party Waiting To Happen”, doesn’t it?

White Chocolate Caramel Pecan Fudge Recipe

Sauteed Sirloin Tips With Bell Peppers And Onion

This versatile recipe can be served many different ways simply by altering the seasonings. Prepared as-is with steak seasoning, this can be served together with baked or mashed potatoes and a salad for a weeknight meal.  Using fajita seasoning and warmed tortillas, and you have my favorite fajita dinner.  Substituting Asian seasonings for the steak seasoning, served with rice this becomes an Asian themed dish. Preparing the marinade ahead of time or overnight, the sirloin tips become an easy, one skillet dish to accompany the various sides however you choose to season and serve it.

Sauteed Sirloin Tips With Bell Peppers And Onion Recipe

No-Bake Orange Creamsicle Cheesecake

Many things define “summer” in our family, and two treats high on the list are Orange Sherbert and Orange Creamsicles.  The orangy, cold goodness is almost singularly refreshing on a hot summer day!  So, when Little Red Bear and I came across this Orange Creamsicle Cheesecake, it seemed a perfect treat for upcoming Labor Day Weekend barbeques and events.  And we don’t even have to turn the oven on.

No-Bake Orange Creamsicle Cheesecake Recipe

If you enjoy these new recipe features, please tap the Like button below and feel free to Comment and let us know, and we will be on the lookout for more interesting and fun recipes to share with you each Sunday morning as we go along.  And remember, all of these recipes are added each week to our “Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes” board on Pinterest for you to access anytime.

If you have a family favorite or vintage recipe that you would like to share, please snap a photo and send it along to us. We’ll be happy to add it in for the benefit of others.

Thanks as always for spending part of your day with us. Recalling the old proverb — “A Sunday well-spent brings a week of content.”   Sunday family dinners accomplish more than merely feeding the family, for they nurture as well.   – Jim (and Red!)


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“Kitchens are made for bringing families together.”

                                    “The most indispensable ingredient of all good home cooking  —                                – love for those you are cooking for.” – Sophia Loren


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“A balanced diet is having a Chocolate Cupcake in each paw.” – Little Red Bear


Introducing “Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes”

My oldest son is a classically trained chef.  I like to imagine that having cooked all my life myself, that I helped to contribute a little more to his interest and education than merely a pile of cash for culinary school.

Admittedly, with everyone grown and off on their own now and not doing as much heavy cooking as when raising four children, I am still always on the lookout for interesting new recipes, techniques, and ideas for both of us, in addition for Little Red Bear, who is a noted cook himself.  Little Red Bear is widely regarded as baking the best biscuits in the Tri-County area, and renowned for his famous weekly Friday Night Fish Fries, as readers of his adventure stories are aware.

Accordingly, we have many recipes for a wide variety of dishes and treats that come our way each week, and a few always seem to catch our interest more than others.  It occurred to us, Little Bear and me, that we could share some of the more notable recipes each week with you here, especially with the fall holidays and cooking season around the corner soon.

Each week we will feature a few of the recipes which caught our eye, and link directly to the original recipe provider for you.  In addition, I have set up a new Pinterest Board for “Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes”, to make it easy for re-pinning or referring to in the future for everyone. And check out my thousands of other recipes, art and information on other Pinterest boards, as well.

Recipes shared here are simply the ones which stood out as looking exceptionally good, creative, and not unduly cumbersome or requiring deluxe or overly expensive ingredients, skills, tools, or equipment to prepare. Recipes for ordinary folk like Little Red Bear and me, no chefs-in-training here.  Calories, fat grams, salt content and other dietary issues do not enter into it. Little Red Bear’s only criteria for judging a recipe in the end is – “Did it taste good?”

I personally do not eat much meat and no seafood other than fish (because Little Red Bear’s fried fish is staggeringly delicious!), but will share recipes for others because we are not pushing any agendas here. We have not tested all the recipes shared, so do not vouch for them.  It’s all about sharing information and enjoyment.

So then, to begin here are a few of the top recipes which grabbed our attention this week –

Poached Apples with Glazed Pecans

These take me back to the poached apples my Mother would make in the fall and winter, filling our home with the scent of cinnamon apple goodness.  Little Red Bear likes to mix in some Cinnamon Red Hot Candies into the sugar mix when baking.  Per the recipe — “Poached Apples baked in a lovely bath of apple cider that simmers into a wonderful syrup.  Serve them stuffed with glazed pecans, hot or cold with a dollop of whipped cream.”

Poached Apples Recipe

Sprinkled Butter Cookies

Little Red Bear loves melt-in-your-mouth Butter Cookies during the holiday season. The fun sprinkles make these festive cookies perfect year round. Per the recipe — “Rainbow Sprinkled Butter Cookies! These delicious cookies are easy to make and use evaporated milk to make the cookies extra soft! They melt in your mouth!  Roll them around in colored sprinkles to make them more fun!”

Sprinkled Butter Cookies Recipe

BBQ Pulled Sweet Potato Sliders

Having some veggie-loving friends over for a barbeque?  These sliders, made from nutritious shredded sweet potatoes really caught our eye this week.  “Yummy and good for you!” Little Red Bear exclaimed.  With shredded sweet potatoes, onion, red cabbage and carrots, these are veggie-packed awesome!

BBQ Pulled Sweet Potato Sliders

Apple Pecan Monkey Bread

Apples and pecans in a pull-apart Monkey Bread dripping with sugary, buttery goodness for the autumn and holiday seasons!  The aroma of this baking will get anybody out of bed on a chilly morning!

Apple Pecan Monkey Bread Recipe

Fluffernutter Sandwich Cookies

A “Fluffernutter” is a sandwich typically made with peanut butter and marshmallow fluff served on white bread.  These sandwich cookies are a playful take on the original with a toasty marshmallow and chocolate center sandwiched in between classic, soft and crumbly peanut butter cookies. I would like to tell you that these were delightfully delicious, but Little Red Bear ate them all before I could try one. So, we’ll go by his word on it, I suppose.

Fluffernutter Sandwich Cookies Recipe

Oven Fried Pickles

Little Red Bear and I both loved fried pickles!  With this recipe using one of my favorite ingredients, Panko Crumbs, to add extra crunchiness, and being oven-baked instead of deep-fried for a more healthy treat, we both felt these would go perfectly with any barbeque or fish fry. We like to keep it simple and dip them in Ranch Dressing.

Oven Fried Pickles

Blackberry Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting

Little Red Bear and I both love blackberries and blackberry dishes in all forms, so when this Blackberry Cake with Cream Cheese Frosting landed in our inbox we both took notice. Shared on my Facebook page, it immediately started gathering Likes and Shares. The all-natural flavor and color come from an infusion of fresh blackberry puree. How many times can we say “Wow!” to describe this one?

Blackberry Cake With Cream Cheese Frosting Recipe

If you enjoy this new recipe feature, please tap the Like button below and feel free to Comment and let us know, and we will keep on the lookout for more to share with you each week as we go along.  And remember, all of the weekly recipes are already pinned on our new “Little Red Bear’s Hand-picked Recipes” board on Pinterest for you to access anytime.

If you have a family favorite or vintage recipe that you would like to share, please snap a photo and send it along to us. We’ll be happy to add it in for the benefit of others.

Thanks as always for spending part of your day with us.  Good food is even better when shared with good friends. Be the reason someone smiles today!  – Jim (and Red!)


If you enjoy your visits here Become a Patron of this site and my writing work, helping to grow and expand our outreach to others. Find out more and discover Patron benefits today!


“Kitchens are made for bringing families together.”

“People who love to eat are always the best people.” – Julia Child


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“Laughter is brightest where food is best.” – Irish Proverb


 

Don’t Cry Over Spilled Orange Juice — Clean It Up!

Following a rather unfortunate mishap in the kitchen the other morning, it occurred to Little Red Bear and me that, to the best of our knowledge, no one had ever written a poem or advisory about spilled orange juice.  We are told from an early age not to cry over spilled milk, of course. And if we spill salt, a pinch tossed over the left shoulder for good luck will supposedly blind the devil waiting there.

But what do we do about spilled orange juice?  Cry?  Don’t cry?  Splash some over our shoulder?  And what can we learn from the experience?  So, we sharpened our pencils and set to work.

In the end, neither Little Red Bear nor I could think of anything to do about spilled orange juice other than to simply get busy and clean up the mess, being especially grateful that it  was merely orange juice and not our treasured, albeit icky-sticky, honey supply.

And, upon further review, we found the orange juice innocent in the  regrettable and messy spillage episode, and blamed it all on the yellow cup which proved itself to be notably deceptive and unreliable.  And haste, which, of course, we all know what that makes because someone did take the time to develop a proverb about the consequences of haste and waste.

When pouring fresh yellow orange juice into a non-see-through yellow cup,

Take a moment to switch the light on to save five minutes cleaning up.

Pouring in the dark soon leads to over-filling and spilling, you see,

Leaving behind a mighty mess which must be sopped and mopped up by me.

This I have learned from experience, such a true and noble teacher,

Who knew that congenial yellow cups could have this peculiar feature?

Thanks always for visiting with us. A single kind word or act of kindness can turn someone’s entire day or life around.  In a world where we can be anything — be Kind, and the reason someone smiles today! – Jim (and Red!)


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                    “Happiness often sneaks in through a door you didn’t know you left open.”               – John Barrymore

            “To practice any art, no matter how well or badly, is a way to make your soul grow.   So, do it.” – Kurt Vonnegut


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

                                      “Reading should not be presented to children as a chore or duty.                                       It should be offered to them as a precious gift.” — Kate DiCamillo


 

Happy Book Lover’s Day! What Is It That You Love About Books?

In honor of Book Lover’s Day on August 9th, some fellow writing and blogging friends and I are sharing what books mean to us and how we enjoy them. I encourage you to visit their pages as well, listed at the end of this post.

What do books mean to you? Do books and reading hold a special place or memories in your life?

My reading adventures began at a very early age. Diagnosed with a bone disease at age two and going on crutches and then into a wheelchair for several years at age three, my Mother took it upon herself to develop a love of books and reading with me, starting at a time earlier than I can remember. By the time I entered school, I was already reading several levels ahead of classmates.

Looking back, I readily recall five books that not only changed my life, but also continue to influence the interests, choices and decisions I make today.  And that is why I am such a staunch supporter of children’s literacy, advocating reading to children from the earliest age, helping them to get started reading, and then continuing reading with them well after they are reading on their own to show continued interest and guidance.

          “Make it a rule never to give a child a book you would not read yourself.”  – George Bernard Shaw

The five books most instrumental in guiding my life were –

  • “The Little Engine That Could” by Watty Piper. I do not know how many (hundreds?) of times this story was read to me and later by me over the years, but the lesson for a young boy in a wheelchair was clear – “Never give up and you can make it over the mountain, too!”
  • “The Legends of Davy Crockett” put out by Walt Disney. Looking back, the story may have been sanitized a bit by Disney, but the examples were clear, and what better early hero for a young boy growing up in the 1950s than Davy Crockett. His motto became a guide thru later life – “Be always sure you’re right – then go ahead.”
  • “Hammond’s Nature Encyclopedia of America” from 1960. This large book, ordered thru the mail by my Mother, complete with 320 original painting illustrations became my introduction and foundation for study of the natural world, with detailed pictures and information on everything from minerals and rocks, to every classification of animal, geography, trees and plants, climate and more. It was the largest book I had ever seen. I lived with this book in my lap, studying all the wonders of nature, forming a life-long interest and passion.
  • “The Boy Scout Handbook” – This book became my constant study guide for years thru the Boy Scouts, ultimately reaching the rank of Eagle Scout. Thru this book and the scouts, I learned independence, leadership, and a way of life built on character and service to others, while also greatly advancing my interests in the natural world, the wilderness and conservation.
  • “Two Years Before the Mast” – A memoir written by the American author Richard Henry Dana Jr. and published in 1840, captivated my imagination like no other book I had read before. By this time, I had already read “Moby Dick”, “Tom Sawyer”, and “Huckleberry Finn”, all beloved classics, especially those and others by Mark Twain, my favorite storytelling author. But I was familiar with all those stories before reading the books. “Two Years Before the Mast”, recalling a two-year sea voyage from Boston to California on a merchant ship starting in 1834, was a fresh story and greatly impressed upon me how powerful and fun storytelling could be.

“There are perhaps no days of our childhood we lived so fully as those we spent with a favorite book.” – Marcel Proust

That is why I love books and developing a life-long love of reading with children. Books have quite simply and profoundly impacted and changed my life.  An old saying goes — “When the student is ready, the teacher will appear.”  I believe the same about books.

I can see clearly now how these five books have worked together, each contributing their parts, to both form the foundation and heavily influence my “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” stories, combining nature and conservation themes with good old-fashioned family and Boy Scout values, with white-knuckled fun and adventurous storytelling to keep it interesting. Mark Twain helps a lot, too.

So – Happy Book Lover’s Day!  I encourage you to make a nice cup of tea (or beverage of choice) and sit down with a good book today.  And if there is a little one around, grab them up for a reading session, too.

I encourage you to visit my wonderful blogger friends next, who will inspire and make you smile with their personal Book Love thoughts.

Cat Michaels — Cat’s Corner Blog

Rebecca Lyndsey — Author Rebecca Lyndsey Blog

Carmela Dutra — Carmela Dutra’s Blog

Julie Gorges — Baby Boomer Bliss

Rosie Russell — Books by Rose

Thanks as always for reading and visiting with us!  Be the reason someone smiles today!  — Jim (and Red!)


If you enjoy your visits here Become a Patron of this site and my writing work, helping to grow and expand our outreach to others. Find out more and discover Patron benefits today!


“So it is with children who learn to read fluently and well: They begin to take flight into whole new worlds as effortlessly as young birds take to the sky.” — William James

“There are many little ways to enlarge your child’s world. Love of books is the best of all.”     — Jacqueline Kennedy


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

“A book is a dream that you hold in your hand.” — Neil Gaiman


 

 

What is Patreon, Why I Joined and What It Means For The Future

If you are like me, you may never have heard of Patreon before. I hadn’t until it was suggested to me and I started investigating.

Growing and increasingly popular among artists, writers, videographers, musicians, and other creators, Patreon is a new, web-based membership platform providing a means for creators to build a subscriber base and receive funding directly from their fans and followers who are seeking a way to reward and provide tangible encouragement, help and support for their creative work, thereby enabling creators to focus on their work and do more.

Historically, “patrons” have directly endorsed and supported creative artists’ work over the centuries.  Patreon is a platform for that to happen once again, by providing fans and followers of creators the opportunity to subscribe as a patron of their work at whichever amount they may choose.

Some patrons may contribute each time a creative work is produced, while other patrons may pledge a small monthly amount to assist the creator on an on-going basis. In many instances, as little as a dollar a month.  Membership participation varies, individual to each creator.

So, if you see a new Patreon button or logo on someone’s page that you follow, or are provided an email link in correspondence, that is what it is all about. A way to reward, encourage, and support the creative work of those you follow and enjoy.

Contrary to advice received over the years, I have steadfastly refused to monetize my writing and creativity blog by incorporating advertisers, and will continue to do so, to never distract from positive messages and enjoyment of visitors, so receive no revenues from this site.

Retired on disability and living on a fixed income which diminishes each year with rising housing costs, medical expenses and inflation, I have become increasingly reliant on revenues from the sale of my teddy bear and other creations in my online stores to offset the costs of the blog and writing, and to make ends meet. At the same time those revenues have been decreasing from more difficult days when hand work becomes more challenging, coupled with more time spent on the blog and writing.

After a great deal of thought I came to the decision to join Patreon to help keep it all going, and as a better alternative to intrusive, annoying and questionably tasteless or shady advertisements running on my blog pages, which I would ultimately have little or no control over.

Patreon provides a reliable means for followers who would like to participate in the process, to help keep both the site and my writing work not only going, but also growing to reach a wider audience with our themes of Children, Family, Kindness, Positivity, Mother Nature and Conservation. That is what it is all about here.

What joining Patreon means, is that thru small monthly pledges and encouragement, Patrons allow me to –

  • Devote a greater amount of time to writing both with Little Red Bear and on exciting new projects in the works,
  • Provide a higher quality experience and educational information for visitors to this site,
  • Reach new readers thru my writing blog, Little Red Bear stories, and other new ways,
  • Continue spreading our positive messages to new audiences,
  • Maintain this site free of advertising and easy loading for reader enjoyment,
  • Be able to continue providing free original reading material, poetry, and wholesome entertainment for all ages.

If you are interested in becoming a Patron and would like to learn more about what it involves, simply Visit my Patreon Page and discover the exclusive rewards in store for Patrons as my Thank You – including writing updates, sneak peaks of upcoming releases, extra materials not able to be included in stories and books, the ability to participate in my Patron community, and much more.

Sharing kindness, positivity, and care for Mother Nature, together we can reunite and unify the pieces to help bring about a better future for our children and grandchildren.

Thanks as always for visiting with us. If not able to become a Patron at this time, please be assured that my writing blog will always remain free and accessible for all, and thank you always for your encouragement by following along.  – Jim (and Red!)


If you enjoy your visits here, Become a Patron of this site and my writing work, helping to grow and expand our outreach to others. Find out more and discover Patron benefits today!


“Someone’s sitting in shade today because someone planted a tree a long time ago.” – Warren Buffet

                                              

“I’ll lift you, and you lift me, and we’ll ascend together.” – John Greenleaf Whittier


Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Stories and Fun for All Ages and Fitness Levels!
About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends.

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