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!)


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“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


 

 

International Book Giving Day — Why Reading Is So Important!

February 14th is not only Valentines Day, but also International Book Giving Day!  As such, I have partnered with some wonderful author friends from around the world to give away some copies of our books, hoping to inspire you to do the same.

Give a book you enjoy or one that you think may benefit someone — to a child, a loved one, family member(s), neighbor, or friend.  Donate some new or gently used books to your local library, to a local school, civic group, or to a local hospital.  Leave a copy of a book in the waiting room of a doctor’s or dentist’s office, or at a homeless shelter.  There are many ways to help spread the love of reading.

“Why is reading so important?” some ask.  With help from the folks at WhytoRead.com, let’s count the ways . . . . . . .

  1. Reading Helps to Develop Verbal Abilities. Readers tend to have a larger vocabulary and more ways of expressing themselves, while also helping to avoid acting out or remedies of violence.
  2. Reading Improves Focus and Concentration. Sitting down with a book requires longer periods of focus and concentration, developing attention spans.
  3. Readers Tend to Enjoy the Arts and Work to Improve the World. Readers are more likely to visit museums, attend concerts and the like, and are more likely to volunteer and to do charity work.
  4. Reading Improves Imagination. Reading about new worlds and peoples and having to create the images from the written words in one’s mind as opposed to merely viewing on a screen, develops creative and imaginative abilities.
  5. Reading Makes You Smarter. Having books available at home has been strongly linked to improved academic performance.  It’s all about learning.
  6. Reading Makes One Interesting and Attractive. The knowledge base and exposure to the world acquired thru reading allows one to hold their own and meaningfully contribute to conversations, as opposed to slinking off not to embarrass oneself.
  7. Reading Reduces Stress. In a study performed at Mindlab International at the University of Sussex, test subjects only needed to read silently to themselves for six minutes to slow down their heart rate and ease muscle tension.
  8. Reading Improves Your Memory.  As opposed to listening to a tape or lecture, reading provides the opportunity to pause for reflection and critical thinking, which also serves to improve memory retention capabilities.
  9. Reading Gives Us The Opportunity to Discover and Create Ourselves.  Being exposed to others’ lives, situations, feelings, opinions and perspectives allows each of us to examine our own life in the light of new knowledge and experience, learn life skills, and to develop who we really are and seek to be.
  10. Reading is Entertainment. Reading is fun, pure and simple. With due respect to all of the above, reading is also wonderfully Entertaining, allowing us to explore new worlds, escape for a mental vacation, and to be absorbed and immersed in a story or adventure for hours and hours. And to revisit as often as we like at no extra charge.  Take “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” for example. Where else can one go on the planet to a place where the animals and humans interact as equals and share hair-raising adventures, while learning about the natural world, kindness and positivity at the same time?

So, that is why reading is truly important.  We have joined together to give away a selection of both Print and eReader books.  Our book giveaway runs now thru February 15th.  The more actions completed, the better chance of winning a free book for yourself.  Simply tap on the link below to get started.

Tap Here To Enter Our Books Giveaway!

Terms and Conditions: There is NO purchase necessary to enter or win. Winners will be randomly drawn through the Rafflecopter widget within 48 hours and notified by email once the giveaway ends. The winners will then have 72 hours to respond. If the winner(s) do not respond within 72 hours, a new winner(s) will be chosen. This giveaway is open to all who live in and outside of the US. However, as there are several sponsors of this giveaway who live both domestic and international. Print books are available only for domestic country of author origin; ebooks offered outside author’s country of origin at their discretion.

Tap Here To Enter Our Books Giveaway!

 

Thanks always for visiting!  Please join my friends and me in supporting literacy and reading on International Book Giving Day.  The world will be better for it! — Jim (and Red!)

Family Times — Together Times — The Best Times!

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

Little Red Bear Answers Reader Questions — “Where is McNickle’s?”

More reader questions for Little Red Bear!   Here we go with another one . . . . . .

Reader Question from Road Trip Rick in Disoriented, Oregon – “Dear Little Red Bear —  I’m really hungry for some old-fashioned pickles and pork rinds so planning a road trip on Sunday, but can’t seem to find “McNickle’s Famous Pickles & Pork Rinds” country store where you do book signings, anywhere on a map. And my GPS is no help at all.  Where is it and will you be there on Sunday for a book signing when I get there?” 

Answer— That is a very good question, Rick!  And it’s not surprising that you can’t find McNickle’s Famous Pickles & Pork Rinds on a map or in the GPS doohickeys, because it seems to be one of those kind of places that a person can’t find unless they know where it is to begin with.

The best thing to remember is that it is on Shady Holler Road, just west of Knob Lick. The country store is located about half a mile past Turner’s red barn, and across from the split pin oak tree if you’re unfamiliar with the area.  If you find yourself sitting in front of the Post Office in Curly Pine, chances are you most likely missed the barn and went too far.  That old red barn sits back from the road a bit, behind the row of hedge apples, so you need to keep a sharp eye peeled and be on the lookout for it, especially during the summer when the trees have their leaves.  And if that’s the case and you’re staring at a mailbox, we find it best to just go back and start over from where you left and try again.

But, Ethel McNickle is adamant that the store remains closed on Sundays, so you might want to plan a Saturday trip.  As for the book signing, Ethel assures me that she will have a number of pre-signed books on hand for you when you get there.  But don’t look for me.  Summer Saturdays are for fishing, not sitting inside talking.  If you want to talk about the book, just mosey on down to Perch Lake. Don’t worry, I usually bring along a few extra fishing poles for visitors if you forget yours.  Out-of-towners dropping by to talk and fish seem to turn up quite often ever since the book went out last year.  And if you don’t like fishing, that’s not a problem, either. We can always use another hand or two cleaning ’em.   Hope that answers your questions, Rick.  Drive safe. — Little Red Bear

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Please keep those questions and letters coming, don’t be bashful.  We’ll get to them as best we can here for you.  And if it’s really urgent, just smear a little honey on the envelope seal.  Red will be sure to get to that one first!

Happy reading, and thanks as always for stopping by!  And remember folks, life is simpler when you plow around the stump.   – Jim (and Red!)

LRB Ad- With a Fishing Pole

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

So You Want To Be A Writer — Dreaming of Chickens . . . .

So, you want to be a writer, you say.  It’s a neat life living in your imagination, you say.   Seems like a fun hobby.  Thoughts to share with the world.  You want to work in your pajamas.  Wake up dreaming about exotic locales and people, you say.

Cool.  But just so you know, this particular writer woke up in the wee hours this morning dreaming he was sleeping outside in a muddy pen in the rain, with chickens and a wet, smelly and cranky fox.  Blow the image for you?

Yeah, someday I may have to try my hand at writing a rich and sensuous romance novel to wake up dreaming about sharing a bottle of wine with someone special on a Riviera beach or in a street-side Paris cafe.  Luscious cheese, a warm croissant and enchanting conversation.  Or a refreshing sea breeze in the air with laughing gulls greeting the sunrise.

Aaahh – who am I kidding?  We both know that’ll never happen and the someone special in the dream would just be another frickin’ chicken anyway.  I have to go.  Need to write about the chickens and add them to the stories before I forget just how dreadfully bad that fox truly smelled.  But yeah — I am writing all that down in my pajamas.  So there’s that.   At 3 a.m.

The muse sends ideas.  I have no control over what they are or when they arrive.  And that’s the writer’s life.

Thanks as always for visiting! — Jim   (and Red!)

Careful What You Dream Of . . . .

Careful What You Dream Of . . . .

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

 

“The Adventures of Little Red Bear” Determined To Be ‘Sound Investment’

In order to cover all bases for his fans, Little Red Bear had an official Cost/Benefit analysis of “The Adventures of Little Red Bear: The First Holler!” performed by his trusted accountant and financial advisor, Angus McNutt, senior partner of the firm “McNutt and McGillicutty CCC” ( Country Crop Counters) over in Slippery Slide, and the results of the study are in.

For the paperback, at 64,254 words, the reader receives over 4,961 words per dollar invested. For the Kindle and eReader version, a reader receives over 21,781 words per dollar. And of course, the book is Free for anyone with Kindle Unlimited. Taking into account that all words used are original text in copyrighted format with the Library of Congress, it is quite clearly a bargain at any price.

In addition, bearing in mind the fact that words enrich the brain and lessons learned about nature, life, kindness and simply having fun remain with a person forever, it was clear that any of the versions far exceed any value received in television and other forms of entertainment, where “any benefit potentially received is fleeting and transitory”, as Mr. McNutt stated in his report.

It should be noted that the Preface, Frontispiece, Dedication, Artwork and such were not included in Mr. McNutt’s calculations, which would have the effect of making the Cost:Benefit ratio even higher for a reader.

It was Angus McNutt’s conclusion then that “’The Adventures of Little Red Bear’ short story collection is both a wise and sound long-term financial investment.”  Just in case anyone was on the fence concerning issues of that sort before investing in the book.

“The Adventures of Little Red Bear” Short Story Collections on Amazon.  Old-fashioned, Family-friendly Storytelling and Fun for both the Young and the Young-at-Heart. Positive Themes of Friendship, Kindness, Helping Others and Mother Nature.  With a healthy dash of oldfangled, belly laugh humor and fun.

Join us for an Adventure in the Beautiful Ozarks Mountain Country, and stop by for some biscuits and honey! —  Jim   (and Red!)

Angus McNutt, of "McNutt and McGillicutty Country Crop Counters"

Angus McNutt, of “McNutt and McGillicutty CCC”

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

Little Red Bear Answers Reader Questions — “Cushaw What?”

More reader questions for Little Red Bear!   Here we go with another one . . . . . .

Reader Question from Doubting Thomas in Bristly Barbs, South Dakota – “Dear Little Red Bear —  I enjoyed your adventures very much and realize they are listed under fiction, but tell the truth for once . . . you’re making all of this stuff up, aren’t you?  A ‘Cushaw Pie’ mentioned in “The Storm” story?!?  I have never heard of a cushaw anything and I have heard of a lot.  So be honest.  You and that writer guy Jim are just pulling our legs on that one, right?”

Answer— That is a very good question, Thomas!  And we are happy that you took notice and the time to write us about it.  As you pointed out, the stories are listed under the ‘Fiction’ category, but that’s only because when Little Red Bear was having all of his adventures, people video taping everything and taking selfies had not really come into fashion yet, so having no photographic record Amazon made us list them as fiction, even though every one really, truly did happen just as they are written.  Word for word.  More or less.

Now, to the Cushaw Pie concern.  Yes, Thomas, there really is such a thing as a Cushaw Pie made from a Cushaw Squash.  Maybe it would help for you to think of it as a Pumpkin with a different name.  And shape.  And color.  With stripes.   But the rest is very similar.

A Cushaw Pie is made from a Cushaw Squash, an heirloom crookneck squash, and is a Southern Appalachian tradition.  The cushaw is sometimes referred to as a “Tennessee Sweet Potato.”  It does very well when grown, is resistant to pesky vine borers, and because it hails from the Caribbean tends to grow well in hot, dry climates.  The inner flesh is light yellowish, with a mild, sweet flavor.

You have probably seen them used in autumn decorations, along with pumpkins, hay bales, scarecrows and such, but just didn’t know the name.  And while so many folks use them for Autumn, Halloween and Thanksgiving decorations, few realize that they are not only edible but make up into a fantastic pie.  Just like a pumpkin.

Here is a Cushaw Pie recipe to get you started the next time you see one, along with some links to some more cushaw recipes on our Pinterest Boards — Cushaw Pie Recipe, Kentucky Proud Cushaw Pie Recipe,  Best Cushaw Pie Recipe, Cushaw Squash Soup Recipe, Cranberry Cushaw Bread.

Cushaw Pie Recipe, via Kentucky Proud

Cushaw Pie Recipe, via Kentucky Proud

Hope that answers your question about the Cushaw Pie in “The Storm” story, Thomas.   As you can see, it is a real thing.   Happy reading and cooking, and thanks for writing in and being such an involved fan of Little Red Bear!

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Please keep those questions and letters coming. We’ll get to them as best we can here for you.  Happy reading, and thanks as always for stopping by!  And remember folks, cushaws can be pretty heavy, but it don’t take a very big person to carry a grudge. – Jim (and Red!)

Cushaw Squash with Pumpkin Decoration

Cushaw Squash with Pumpkin Decoration

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

Little Red Bear Answers Reader Questions – “Hummingbird Spit! What Could Be Better?”

Little Red Bear and I have received another reader question we thought it may be good to respond to for everyone.  Well, a question and a comment really, and good information to pass along.

Reader Question from S. F. on holiday at an undisclosed beach resort in the U. K. –“Dear Little Red Bear — Holiday reading, sunshine, and fresh sea air – what could be better?Thanks for translating Red, got plenty of buzzards’ breath but all out of catfish whiskers and the hummingbirds are being most uncooperative.”

Answer— For the benefit of those who have not read “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” yet, or may have unwisely skipped over the “Introduction”, what S. F. is referring to is that to save readers the difficulty and hassles of needing to translate all the different spoken animal languages and dialects back and forth as they read, Little Red Bear and I worked tirelessly to translate everything for you.  Bears speaking to birds and rabbits, turtles speaking to bears, humans speaking to bears and foxes, weasels yammering on, etc.  The pig is a different matter, and you will need to read for yourself to see what that is all about.

Information on the translation process was explained in the Introduction, along with many other things, and S. K. is referring to a few of the translation ingredients in her comment.  And it points to why we decided to go ahead and take care of the translations issue for readers ahead of time.  We didn’t charge extra for it.  Little Red Bear just felt it a nice to thing to do for folks.

In response to S. K. then — “Holiday reading, sunshine, and fresh sea air – what could be better?”  We can’t think right off of any better thing than being on holiday at the beach reading Little Red Bear stories, so you have us stumped with that one.  And yes, we have found the hummingbirds to be problematic and difficult to work with at times, as it seems the later it gets into summer the more of a sugar high they are on, causing some predictably spiky attitudes.  We are impressed with your having gathered sufficient quantities of the buzzard’s breath though, as that is where the translation process breaks down for many folks, unwilling to approach a turkey buzzard that closely.  Little Red Bear sends a big paw pat on the back for that one!

As for the other, we could mail some dried catfish whiskers over for you, but find that fresh whiskers work much better and produce a clearer translation in the end.  And since we have it all translated for you ahead of time anyway, we won’t bother to send any dried whiskers over to save you the mailing expense.

So, sorry we were stumped by that question, but want to thank you for writing in to let us know all that translation time and effort is helping readers out after all.

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So, a big thanks to S. F. for the comments!  Remember folks, please keep those questions and letters coming. We’ll get to them as best we can here for you.  Happy reading, and thanks as always for stopping by! And remember folks, the best sermons are lived, not preached.  God bless, y’all.  – Jim (and Red!)

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

Little Red Bear Answers Reader Questions — “Angry Weasels! What To Do?”

Little Red Bear and I are getting more and more questions from readers.  So here’s another one, hoping to provide useful and life-saving information by sharing for all.

Reader Question from K. C. in Shriveled Branches, California – “Dear Little Red Bear — What should I do if confronted by an angry weasel?”

Answer— Another great question, because this seems to come up more often than most folks think.  The problem is, weasels are just not big on negotiating, so trying to reason with them or attempting to discover the source of their anger is largely a waste of time, as most just wake up angry in the morning right off the start, and their mood seems to follow on downhill from there.

We recommend telling the weasel a really funny joke, and hope it dies laughing.  It seemed to work very well for the Roger Rabbit folks.  If you’re not particularly funny, then we recommend running away as fast as you can, because the longer you stand in front of the weasel the hungrier it’s going to get while the time passes.  If you have wings, use them.  Because we haven’t found the weasel yet that can fly more than two laps around the feedlot.

Weasels are never easy to deal with, because even when they tell you  they’re going to behave and be your friend, they most likely ain’t.  So take whatever a weasel says with a grain of salt.  Or two.   Good luck with ’em, and we’ll keep y’all in our thoughts. — Little Red Bear

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A big thanks to K.C. for the question!  Remember folks, keep those questions and letters coming. We’ll get to them as best we can here for you.  Happy reading, and thanks as always for stopping by!   And remember folks, an angry weasel is considerably faster than a John Deere Tractor.  Best to try and stay on their good side.  If you can find one.  – Jim (and Red!)

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

Little Red Bear Answers Reader Questions — “Reading Safety Advisory!”

“Letters.  We get letters.  We get lots and lots of letters.”

Little Red Bear and I have been receiving a number of questions from readers the past few weeks regarding “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” short stories collection, and after we talked about it while sitting around the campfire the other night with Albuquerque, Aunt Ivy and some of the others, Little Red Bear and I decided it might be a good idea to share some of the questions and answers with everyone.   Here is the first one, what Red thought might be the most important question we have received so far.

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Reader Question from S. R. in Jolly River Falls, MN – “Dear Little Red Bear — Is there a time when it is not safe or prudent to read “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” short stories?”

Answer— That is a very good question!  And it so happens, something we have looked into.  From the beginning, we figured in all honesty, that we most likely wouldn’t be generating a New York Times Bestseller list of readers, so should try to protect and insure the safety of those we do accumulate along the way, being probably few in number.  So as it turns out, we did research this very topic before we released the book on Amazon.

Here are the times and situations we determined as most unsafe or imprudent to read the stories, so accordingly are issuing the following Public Safety Advisory.  A few instances we determined were—

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General Advisories

Do Not Read “The Adventures of Little Red Bear”

When operating a motor vehicle, aircraft or heavy machinery.

While swimming in a swamp with alligators.

While snorkeling with sharks.

While at work with a supervisor possessing questionable tastes in literature.

While in the bathtub or hot tub if reading on a laptop plugged into an electrical socket.

In a lightning storm if standing alone in an open area.

While skydiving if the main parachute has failed to deploy.

While riding a mule to the bottom of the Grand Canyon. The mules perfectly know the way of course, but in this one instance we feel you really should not miss the once in a lifetime views of the Canyon. Read later at basecamp.

While shaving with a straight razor.

When wandering unaccompanied by armed escort in lion country.

While cooking over an open flame. (This caution applies to the paperback version, only.)

While performing roofing or window washing work above the sixth floor of a building.

While surveying a buffalo herd. (It’s not really unsafe, per se. It’s just that bison have not made it into the stories yet and are still a little miffed about it. Just don’t let them see what you are reading and it should be okay.  And of course, never roller skate in a buffalo herd whether you’re reading the book or not, but you most likely knew that one already.)

Industry Specific Advisories

For Medical Professionals- do not read while performing or assisting in major surgeries and/or dental work.

For Baseball Players- do not read while batting or catching. Field position players may safely read during the lull in between pitches. Umpiring crews, as well.  Reading the adventures while in the dugout and bullpen is highly recommended for all to relieve tedium.  Reading the adventures is also highly recommended to pass the time for soccer goalies.

Reading Exemptions

Members of Congress are exempted from reading “The Adventures of Little Red Bear”.  While there is certainly a lot which could be learned from the stories for them, it is generally agreed that they just have too much meaningful work to do at this time to risk being distracted by fun and common sense.

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We hope this helped answer your important safety question regarding the reading of Red’s adventures.  In most other instances, we have determined that it is both safe and prudent to read “The Adventures of Little Red Bear.”  Indeed, highly recommended for clean family fun and reading entertainment!  Thanks for the question S. R., and we’re hoping you enjoy the stories.  Please remember to scrape your boots off before coming back inside from an adventure!  We don’t want to be hearing about dirty floors from irate mothers.   So please scrape your boots.  Especially after a visit to Farmer Turner’s.

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Remember folks, keep those questions and letters coming. We’ll get to them as best we can here for you.  Happy reading, and thanks as always for stopping by! And remember folks, every path has a few puddles in life.  The sun will be back out soon enough to dry you off and help you on your way again.   – Jim (and Red!)

Dog- Reading 4 Pug

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

New Little Red Bear Video– “A Visit to Farmer Turner’s Farm!”

Farmer Turner is a good friend and neighbor of Little Red Bear and one of the recurring characters in “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” short story collection.  Thru Farmer Turner and some others to be introduced in later story collections, we are able to introduce domestic animals, farming and agricultural topics and issues into the stories.

His farm is located a little ways from Little Red Bear’s cabin on Honey Hill, on the north side of Buttonbush Creek, and he has a little bit of everything going on there it seems.  Red thought it might be fun to take everyone on a visit to Farmer Turner’s to meet some of his friends and other animals living on the farm, and is hoping you might bring any little ones you may have along for the trip, too.

This video is dedicated to our wonderful and helpful friends– Marilyn Schroeder keeping it real growing wheat in Nebraska, and the author Kathleen Creighton, the self-described “Farm Tamer” herself.  Please check out Kathleen’s amazing collection of award-winning Romance stories on Amazon.

So here you go– “A Visit to Farmer Turner’s Farm.”  As always, Little Red Bear reminds to view on full screen with the speakers on if possible.  Have a nice time!  Careful where you step, and thanks as always for stopping by!   —   Jim (and Red!)

“The Adventures of Little Red Bear” Short Story Collection on Amazon.

Available for Kindle, eReaders and in Paperback!

Humpty Dumpty Retold– He Did What???

“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall.

Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.

All the king’s horses and all the king’s men,

Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty back together again.”

How sad.  And kind of a depressing lesson to impart to children.  A little Egg Boy, simply engaged in active playtime, suddenly smashed to smithereens on a scalding, sunny summer sidewalk.  We can only imagine what happened next.   But that was a long time ago and they did things differently then.  They tended to make lessons scary to have an impact.

A cute little girl in her best red riding cloak being eaten by a ravenous wolf.  Two lost children captured by a witch.  Two children fetching water and one falls down and splits his head open.  All just going about their normal lives and routines — visiting a shut-in grandmother in the woods, being accused of simply overeating, doing their daily chores.  Stacks of poisoned apples lying about to sicken unsuspecting hungry travelers and wayfarers. Perilous times indeed. The original story of Sleeping Beauty is so terrifying it cannot even be retold here.  And we won’t even talk about Bluebeard.  Dreadful, ghastly stuff.

So, to set the record straight, more or less, here’s what really happened on that day in Humpty Dumpty land.  The public deserves to know.

Young Prince Humpty Before the Great Fall (unknown artist)

Young Prince Humpty Showing Off With Playmates, Before the Great Fall
(unknown artist)

“Humpty Dumpty sat on a wall.

Humpty Dumpty had a great fall.

All the king’s horses and all the king’s men,

Couldn’t put Humpty Dumpty back together again.

So they each took turns reading to Humpty Dumpty from “The Adventures of Little Red Bear”, a collection of short stories entertaining for all ages.

The positive fun stories were just what Humpty Dumpty needed to lift his spirits and take his mind off the fracturing wall fiasco while he convalesced in a nursing home.  The little egg prince (yes– he was indeed a prince, they left that part out, see the historical record image for proof, i.e. the crown) felt better right away.  His shattered shell mended and he was soon on his way back out the door again to play.  He felt smashing, but in a good and not crashing, bashing sort of way.  Humpty Dumpty had learned valuable life lessons from Little Red Bear, to be bold but not reckless, so never again found himself teetering precipitously on a windy western wall.

Humpty Dumpty lived to a happy old age, attributing all of his success and glories to the lessons learned from Little Red Bear over the years.  He followed after his father, the Right and Proper King of Cackleberry, eventually becoming King of all the Omelets and lived in a beautiful castle surrounded by high, glistening pink granite walls, all with duly approved, certified and regularly inspected safety railings, in the fanciful Land of Frittatas.

The End.”

Now isn’t that a better bedtime story to share with the little ones?  Mistakes happen, but we work to repair the damage and get on with it.

And most notable of all– “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” has been shown to have the magical and mystical powers to alter the course of history and kingdoms.*

Click Here to Order Your Copy and Change Your History Today!

Thanks as always for visiting!  —  Jim (and Red!)

*     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *     *

*Results may vary. Read as directed. Proven clinically effective in the ongoing treatment and relief of boredom, irritability, idleness, sloth, disquietude, melancholy, deterioration of reading skills, and ambivalence.  Store in a dry place at controlled room temperature.  “The Adventures of Little Red Bear”, as all fine literature, should be kept within the easy reach of children.  Repeated readings and doses produce enhanced results, intensify laugh lines, smooth wrinkles and aid in weight loss if the reader refrains from eating while reading on a treadmill.  Do not read if allergic to humor and common sense.  You should avoid excessive or prolonged exposure to negative thinking.  You should not read these stories while operating a vehicle or heavy machinery, or swimming in a swamp.  Possible side effects include giggling, spontaneous outbursts of hearty laughter, and happy thoughts, which may in turn lead to Peter Pan Syndrome and unexpected flight.  If a flight lasts more than four hours, consult a certified aviator.**  In an emergency or Zombie Apocalypse, this book may be used as a fire starter for warmth or rescue.***

**Statements made by the writer of this book have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration.  Any statements made by the writer of this book should not be intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease, malady, affliction, hazard, heartburn, indigestion, feelings of anxiety, hopelessness or depression, erectile dysfunction, queeziness, dyspepsia, uneven tire pressure or other unspecified uncomfortableness.  If you are pregnant, nursing, taking medication or have a medical condition, perch frequently on ledges and high walls, please consult your librarian before embarking on Little Red Bear’s adventures or taking any advice offered within. This book has not been demonstrated to restore hair in balding men, or to remove crow’s feet or unsightly spots and stains.

***Claims to the contrary notwithstanding, unlike the paperback print copy, the Kindle version does NOT make a suitable fire starter in an emergency.  Ordering extra PRINT versions is advised for Zombie survival preparedness.****

****Updated– recent lab studies have confirmed that the Kindle version is NOT a reliable fire starter in an emergency.  However, the Kindle version, when forcefully thrust forward in a downward striking motion may indeed prove effective in bashing a Zombie’s skull in self-defense.  Experts now advise ordering adequate copies of both versions in order to be properly prepared in the event of survival emergency.

“The Adventures of Little Red Bear” — Available for Kindle, eReaders and in Paperback

 

His Highness and Royal Majesty King Humpty the Learned, Studying "The Adventures of Little Red Bear" (artwork by Milo Winter, 1916)

His Highness and Most Royal Majesty King Humpty the Learned, Studying “The Adventures of Little Red Bear”
(artwork by Milo Winter, 1916)

“The Adventures of Little Red Bear” Short Stories on Amazon

About an Uncommonly Special Bear and His Friends!

 

Now Entering the Ring– Little Red Bear!

As you may recall, we discussed which genres and book categories to list “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” in a few weeks ago. If you missed it, here is a link to the original post→ Lost in Quandary Without a Compass.

After a good deal of  follow-up discussion and being allowed two categories in which to enter, we decided one would be “Juvenile→Fiction→Animals→Bears.”

From the very beginning, the stories have been written with children in mind as well as adults, so the first selection of “Juvenile” seemed like a no-brainer.  Although Red certifies that all of the adventures really did take place exactly as described, we were required to list the book in “Fiction”, lacking photographic proof or evidence to back up his assertions.  The next step was easy, as the stories feature a good number and wide variety of wildlife, domestic farm animals, birds and such, so “Animals” seemed straightforward enough.

But then we came to the next grouping to narrow it down even further.  With it being “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” there was clearly only one choice– “Bears.” Simple enough– right?

But here’s the rub.  We then realized that stepping into that ring would put us in direct competition with not only one, but two heavyweight champions in the field.  Titans of the literary world– Winnie the Pooh and Paddington Bear! And they’re both that cute and cuddly teddy bear, golden brown color, to boot.

But we just don’t see any viable alternative. It’s not like Red is afraid of them or anything, as he is a real bear and not a cartoon drawing or stuffed teddy bear, after all.  He just always tries to peacefully avoid confrontation whenever possible.  An admirable trait to be sure. Nevertheless, don’t let their cuteness fool you.  Pooh and Paddington are rock stars in the field.  Literally– movie stars!  These two fluffy ruffians dominate their category and squish competitors like a blueberry on a walking path without even breaking stride!

It would basically be starting over, but I asked Red if he would like me to recast him as a chipmunk or squirrel, to maybe compete against Chip and Dale or Rocky instead. But as he pointed out, we had already signed on Scritch the Chipmunk and Rusty the Fairydiddle for the second collection of stories and Red didn’t want to put them out of work, just to take their place.  He’s a nice guy like that.  And too, it would be incredibly difficult for a chipmunk or squirrel to pull off some of the feats in the stories which Red did as himself– a bear.  So it looks like we’re committed to the “Bears” category.  No other choice, really.

But I’ll admit it.  I am a little worried.  I know that Winnie the Pooh is all about his honey, and so is Little Red Bear.  I just hope there’s enough honey to go around for everyone.  But Paddington is into marmalade, so that shouldn’t be an issue, as long as he stays on the jammy side of the tracks. They are all really good sorts though, so I’m sure they’ll share and work it out.  I hope.

There is one notable thing that separates Red from the others. He is a real bear and these are real bear stories with real bear action. Or as close as they can be given that he is so uncommonly special– walking on two legs, talking and wearing overalls and a straw hat as he does.

So, just to be safe, a word of caution is probably in order — these are not your mother’s Winnie the Pooh, picture book style, cuddly teddy bear stories.  Just sayin’.  There are a few honest-to-goodness, real backwoods varmints  and perils in these stories.

Also, before I forget, Red wants me to remind you that “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” short stories collection will be released next Tuesday, June 23rd for Kindle and eReaders, and may be preordered on Amazon.  Paperback print copies of the book are available for immediate shipment and delivery right now!  And if you’re not sure how the preorder process works, you just hit the preorder button on the Amazon site, they don’t bill you until the actual book is downloaded on the 23rd, and magical elves work to install “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” automatically into your Kindle or other device overnight while you sleep.  Couldn’t be easier, and that way we don’t run the risk of forgetting to go back and order it and avoid having to wait in long queues backed up behind the inevitable crowds on the actual release day on Tuesday.  You can be comfortably enjoying the stories at home with a cup of tea and cookies while the late-comers are anxiously waiting in line!

And, one last thing–  as a favor– if you happen to come across Pooh or Paddington strolling about anytime, please let them know that Red’s not looking to dethrone anybody or take anyone’s title belt.  If they could just give us a wee bit of space to pitch our little book and tent, maybe on the outskirts of the forest in their kingdom, we’d be much obliged.

Thanks as always for the visit and reading along!  —  Jim (and Red!)

Order Your Copy of “The Adventures of Little Red Bear” Today!

Available for Kindle and eReaders and in Paperback

"Little Red Bear"-- Story Research in a Tree

“Little Red Bear”– Story Research in a Tree