BOOK FUN MAGAZINE - FREE READ

HOPE RUNS by CLAIRE DIAZ-ORTIZ and SAMUEL IKUA GACHAGUA REVIEWED

Claire

Samuel
Hope Runs
By Claire Diaz-Ortiz
Samuel Ikua Gachagua
Published by Revell
ISBN#978-0-8007-2279-1
204 Pages

Back Cover: Sammy Ikua Gachagua had lost his father to illness, his mother to abandonment, and his home to poverty. By age ten, he was living in a shack with seven other children and very little food. He entered an orphanage seeing it as a miracle with three meals a day, a bed to sleep in, and clothes on his back.

When Claire Diaz-Ortiz arrived in Kenya at the end of an around-the-world journey, she decided to stay the night, climb Mt. Kenya, then head back home. She entered an orphanage seeing it as little more than a free place to spend the night before her mountain trek.
God had other plans.

Hope Runs is the emotional story of an American tourist, a Kenyan orphan, and the day that would change the course of both of their lives forever. It's about what it means to live in the now when the world is falling down around you. It's about what it means to hope for the things you cannot see. Most of all, it's about how God can change your life in the blink of an eye.

REVIEW: I’m thankful for the review copy of a book that introduced me to incredibly brave and encouraging people like Claire, Lara and Sammy.

Sammy’s journey will captivate you as he writes in first person about his experiences and hardships in Africa. I was instantly captivated by his honesty and horrified at all this young man had experienced by the age of 10. I was also struck by his gratefulness of the little things in life I often times take for granted. His story will make your heart hurt at the same time you’ll be rooting for him as he takes the next step in an incredible journey.

Life gets better for Sammy when his name is chosen to be in an orphanage called Imani. The manager interviews Sammy and asks him, “Why are you here at Iman? – He replies, “I am here to live!” He replies, “Then do it! Live!”

Sammy reflects, “This is when I realize something about us as orphans, when life throws us a lemon, we must take as much juice from it as we can because we don’t know when it might be taken away and you will be left without any fruit at all. I realize this is true not just for orphans.”

Sammy is a deep thinker and has a strong faith. His first encounter with Claire doesn’t go well. Claire and her friend Lara go to Imani orphanage to see how they can help. Claire says to Sammy, “Aren’t you in standard eight.”

“Sammy is bewildered, “I can’t believe what she has just said, and all my friends start laughing. Hysterically  what Claire doesn’t know is that she has insulted me badly, saying I am still in standard 8 when I have actually just started form one. Essentially, this means she is calling me a Kihii an uncircumcised person…to us, a Kihii is not worthy of being called a man…being a Kihii in a KiKuya community when you’re no longer small boy is a bad thing, & if someone calls you it means they have no respect for you. It is like calling a black person the N-word. It hurts and is very disrespectful.”

“To me, Claire has committed one of the crimes of the century. I vow to never to speak to her again, and I keep my distance”.

Sammy viewed Claire and Lara as other white people who came to their orphanage – took pictures, wrote a check and left. Sammy soon realized these young ladies were different. “They used a different resource than many. They stayed with us and showed us that they’re the same as we are.” These girls want to make a difference and give of themselves. They ask the manager what would help them the most. The manager talks to them about an after school activity like something sports related.

So Claire and Lara who are not really sports minded women set up a cross-country team with a little help from friends. They also create an organization called Hope Runs, it’s a nonprofit that uses running to empower aids orphans in Kenya with tools of personal health. Social entrepreneurship, and education. www.hoperuns.org  is their website.

Sammy had it in his heart to forgive Claire. She didn’t know the crime she had committed. Good thing! Claire shares her and Lara’s experience in Kenya and at the orphanage. Claire reflects, “We had experienced so much on our travels but neither of us were prepared at how much this trip to Africa would change us forever and for one orphan named Sammy. Claire says, “In the same way that all the travel has made me increasingly self-sufficient, the orphanage and the kids have turned me into more than myself. Bestowing responsibility on me in a way that I don’t deserve and can hardly handle, the kids have made me something new.”

Sammy says, “Claire and Lara become one of us. They become like sisters. It took some time, but eventually we failed to see their skin color, all we could see were the people behind the skin.”

Claire and Laura make a deep connection to the orphanage and set up the program to continue after they leave to go home. One Orphan stays in their hearts and minds. Sammy! They feel lead to do more for this your name. Neither of them knew what God had in store. But they were both willing to be willing to do whatever He asked! They didn’t realize what an undertaking that would be.

Sammy would come to America and commit some social phopa’s of his own. He has more compassion for Claire and Lara’s blenders as Sammy says in the author notes, “…many people have sacrificed of themselves to get me where I am today, and I know I now stand on their shoulders. I take all of them and all their expectations back to Kenya with me.”

Sammy’s story is still playing out in Africa. I would like to read about what happened next. Did he go to college? Did God call him on another mission trip?

I was deeply moved by this story of hope, sacrifice and love. I’m once again reminded that God can connect the dots of our lives far better than we can. He can bring people together that don’t live on the same continent and accomplish far more than we could ever imagine in a life that is willing to be willing to do His will.

Claire, Lara and Sammy are still on a journey like the rest of us. Can’t wait to read what happens next. You can join Hope Run on facebook and check out Claire’s blog. I’m so glad they shared their journey you will be glad too!

Nora St.Laurent TBCN Where Book Fun Begins www.bookfun.org

Finding Hope Throufh Fiction Blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com

MEANT TO BE MINE by BECKY WADE REVIEWED


Meant to Be Mine
By Becky Wade
Published by Bethany House
ISBN#978-0-7642-1108-9
376 Pages 


ABOUT AUTHOR: During her childhood in California, Becky frequently produced homemade plays starring her sisters, friends, and cousins. These plays almost always featured a heroine, a prince, and a love story with a happy ending. She's been a fan of all things romantic ever since.

Becky and her husband lived overseas in the Caribbean and Australia before settling in Dallas, Texas. It was during her years abroad that Becky's passion for reading turned into a passion for writing. She published three historical romances with Avon Books, then put her career on hold for several years to care for her kids, then recently returned to writing sheerly for the love of it. She felt led to move to the genre of contemporary Christian romance and couldn't be more thrilled with it.

These days Becky can be found failing but trying to keep up with her housework, sweating at the gym, carting her kids around town, playing tennis, hunched over her computer, eating chocolate, or collapsed on the sofa watching TV with her husband.

Back Cover: Ty Porter has always been irresistible to Celia Park. All through high school--irresistible. When their paths cross again after college--still irresistible. This time, though, Ty seems to feel exactly the same way about Celia. Their whirlwind romance deposits them at a street-corner Las Vegas wedding chapel.

The next morning they wake to a marriage certificate and a dose of cold reality. Celia's ready to be Ty's wife, but Ty's not ready to be her husband. He's a professional bull rider, he lives on the road, and he's long planned to settle down with the hometown girl he's known since childhood.

Five and a half years pass. Celia's buried her dreams so that she can afford to raise her daughter. Ty's achieved all of his goals. Or thought he had, until he looks again into the eyes of the woman he couldn't forget and into the face of the child he never knew he had.

How much will Ty sacrifice to win back Celia's trust and prove to her that their spontaneous marriage can still become the love of a lifetime?

Review: Thanks to The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org for the review copy of a book that introduced me to Becky Wade. She’s written a story that instantly captured my heart, whisked me up into a sweet romance and later dropped me in the middle of a drama between a handsome cowboy and an innocent young lady.

The book starts out in Las Vegas the couple is gambling and drinking then they end up in the wedding chapel. I thought where is this book headed and do I want to go there? Oh, I’m glad I stayed connected because the ride was glorious and memorable. I salute Becky Wade for writing such a thought provoking and fun romance book with well-timed humor.  It’s like nothing I’ve read before. Honestly after reading the first chapter I flipped the book over to check out who the publisher was. The cover said Bethany House. They were a company I could trust. I’ve read many books published by then. I read on. 

Celia Park (young lady) met Ty Porter (cowboy) in High School. It was love at first sight for her. They saw each other after college in Las Vegas. They had four magical dates together in Las Vegas; for Celia it was a love connection she’d dreamt about all through high school. This was her destiny so when Ty felt the same way (finally) she didn’t hesitate to get a taxi and head over to the 24 hours wedding chapel with Ty and tie the knot. Celia couldn’t believe this moment was finally happening; nor could she believe the scene the morning after they walked down the aisle; one unbelievable moment followed by another left Celia deflated searching for answers that would not come. She had turned to God in her time of need and He had a deaf ear (so she thought). Each went on their separate ways, Ty hit the road doing his bull riding thing. Celia went on to having a baby she’d never tell Ty about.  She didn’t want to tangle with him ever again.


This author connects readers with the twenty something crowd who started their lives out in church and completely relied on themselves when they got to college. There was no need for God there. What they grasped in church was the fact that they had to be good to make it in that social setting and the other thing was they couldn’t measure up. They tried and now they were living life on their own terms. I like how this author naturally talked about this matter. Also talk about having a relationship with God can be natural is intercity interwoven into the story seamlessly. Becky Wade has gotten into the mind of this group; shares their view, hopes, fears and dreams. Loved it.

Celia thinks, “Her version of Christianity had been about avoiding drinking, lying, curse words, and sex before marriage. Sure, there’d been stories of the cross and the song, “Jesus loves me” but what had been the result? Her belief that religion meant trying to do – or not do- stuff in order to please God.

…She had everything she’d thought she wanted. A healthy happy daughter. A home; a job at a bakery, the ability to pay her bills. And still, the yawning hole within her remained. The void within her was larger than any mortal person could satisfy.”

I loved how Celia and Ty are trying to figure how to fill the whole in their hearts. They’ve done everything they thought would fill it to no avail. They needed help. Help to forgive one another and themselves. They couldn’t do it in their own strength. Forgiveness isn’t natural. Not when you’ve been hurt to the core of your being. The self-protection shield was up for both of them. They needed a God intervention. The author shows the reader this and lets Celia and Ty figure out this fact on their own. Each realized that they had to be willing to be willing to forgive or their relationship was doomed before it began.

Another thing I LOVED about this book is the author’s humor and fun loving characters. Here’s a peek at what I’m talking about. Celia’s Uncle Danny went on an on-line date. Things take an unexpected turn.

Ty asks Danny’s date, “So, Betty?”
“Yes?”
“How are you feeling about your date with Rip Van Winkle here? Ty nodded at Danny sleeping on the couch. “Best date ever?”
Celia burst out laughing.
Betty giggled into her napkin. “Maybe the most memorable.”
“Tell it to me straight, “Ty said, “You want to marry Danny don’t you?”
Another round of giggles from Betty.
“No, Ty. I don’t want to marry him.”
Snore. Snore. Snore.
“You sure? Consider the advantages Betty: He’s laid back. Not difficult to entertain.”
“It seems, “Celia said to Ty, “that the old broken pelvis routine has failed to win Betty’s heart.”

This is one of the many scenes in the book that had me smile from ear to ear and laugh out loud a time or two. This is the first book I’ve read by this author it definitely won’t be the last. I highly recommend this book as a book club pick. It also had good discussion questions at the end. This is a fun read that had me thinking about Celia, Ty and their situation for days after I closed the book. Just saying, I loved every minute with this couple and their family. Didn’t want it to end.

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network Blog www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine www.bookfunmagazine.com 

A TABLE BY THE WINDOW by HILLARY MANTON LODGE REVIEWED



A TABLE BY THE WINDOW
By Hillary Manton Lodge
Published by Waterbrooke
ISBN# 978-0307731753

ABOUT AUTHOR: Hillary Manton Lodge is the author of A Table by the Window, Plain Jayne, a Carol Award Finalist, and Simply Sara, an ECPA Bestselling book. A graduate of the University of Oregon's School of Journalism, Hillary discovered the world of cuisine during an internship at Northwest Palate Magazine. A storyteller at heart, in her free time she enjoys experimenting in the kitchen, watching foreign films, and exploring her most recent hometown of Portland, Oregon. She shares her home with her husband, Danny, and their Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, Shiloh.

ABOUT BOOK: Heirloom recipes, family secrets…and a chance for love

The youngest heir to a French-Italian restaurant dynasty, food writer Juliette D’Alisa has spent her life negotiating her skill with words and her restaurant aspirations. When her brother Nico offers her a chance to open a restaurant together, she feels torn—does she really have what it takes? Should she risk leaving her journalism career?

After the death of her grandmother, Juliette discovers an antique photograph of a man who looks strikingly like her brother. As the truth behind the picture reveals romance and dark secrets, Juliette struggles to keep the mystery away from her nosy family until she can uncover the whole story.

Inspired by her grandmother’s evolving story, Juliette resolves to explore the world of online dating. To her surprise, she finds a kindred spirit in Neil McLaren, a handsome immunologist based in Memphis, Tennessee. With a long-distance relationship simmering, Juliette faces life-shifting decisions. How can she possibly choose between a promising culinary life and Neil, a man a world away in more ways than one? And is it possible her Grandmother’s story can help show the way?

REVIEW: I’m so thankful for a review copy of a book that introduced me to Hillary Manton Lodge. There was so much I loved about this where to begin? I’ll start off with the quotes the author included at the beginning of each chapter. Some really touched me, others made me smile. Here’s a few I especially liked. “All you need is love, but a little chocolate now and then doesn’t hurt.” Charles m. Schulz.
“Sharing food with another human being is an intimate act that should not be indulged in lighly.” M.F. K. Fisher

“When we eat together, when we set out to do so deliberately, life is better, no matter what your circumstances. Thomas Keller

“I prefer butter to margarine, because I trust cows more than I trust chemists.” Joan Dye Gusson

“Food is our common ground, a universal experience.” James Beard

I bonded with the characters right from the start. I was raised in an Italian family where food preparation was a serious matter that created family fun. Juliette had a French-Italian background and their family owned a restaurant. I could identify with her family get togethers’ where food was the star of the show. I felt right at home. I really enjoyed the cast of characters Juliette had around her. Her friend Linn says, “I hope you find a man soon. I’ll feel better when you eat Trader Joe’s freezer foods like the rest of us.”

…”I’ve been speed dating Linn…I don’t know. I just haven’t met someone really interesting, who thought I was interesting back.”

“Does he have to be a food guy; because some food guys are really fussy?”

Juliette grinned at Linn. “And we’re not?”

“It’s less attractive in a man.” Linn snickered.

“Well, if I could make it past three dates, I might be able to tell you.”

I loved this author’s well timed humor, her cast of fun loving, transparent characters, mixed with a little romance and a fun family secret mystery to solve. I loved how the author would talk about a special event or moment that included food I might want to try. I felt like I was in the company of good friends and some great food where the complete recipe was included at the end of each chapter. To my great surprise the recipes had simple directions and easy to find ingredients. Some of the recipes inside are Stracciatella Crepes, French Apple Cake with Almonds, Nico’s mini Focaccoa, Nutella Mousse, Chocolate-dipped hazelnut short bread, Butternut Squash Risotto, Pine Nut Couscous just to mention a few. I’m looking forward to trying many of the out. This would be just the thing for you to try out at your book club meeting. Have several of your members sign up to make one of the dishes and you can try several all at once and talk about the book. Great book club fun ahead! Thanks Hillary!

Juliette tries on-line dating and meets Neil. He’s not into food like her family was he was a Doctor. Neil says this to Juilette, “From your profile it sounded as though food is a big part of your life. For me, food is a way for my body to gather the nutrients it needs to allow my cells to produce ATP (that’s Adenosine Triphosphatt). But my favorite ATP triggers probably include macaroni and cheese, mashed potatoes, fish sticks and vanilla pudding…sorry. It’s not pretty, but I like to be truthful!” I like Neil as much as I do Juliette.
Juliette liked the fact that Neil walked to the beat of a different drum. She had tried a relationship with someone she worked closely with in the restaurant business. It didn’t work out. She’d like to give this relationship a try. Problem! How could they continue this relationship when she lived in Oregon and he lived in Tenn.? God only knew.

It was ok that food preparation wasn’t as important to Neil as it was for her. “There was something about the rhythm of chopping vegetables, of seasoning food, of watching it transform that helped her relax.”
I was swept away into the restaurant world with its demands and creations. As the D’Alisa family morns the loss of their 90 year old grandmother. In the middle of food, fun and romance a mystery unfolds. Juliette gets her grandmothers French oak cutting service. In the nooks she finds a picture of her youthful grandmother with a handsome man who looks like her brother Nico. Who was this dashing man? Where did he fit into her grandmother’s life? Why didn’t she tell anyone about him? Maybe Juliette would get some clues when she visited family in Italy.

I enjoyed every second of this novel. The only problem I had with the book is that the sequel isn’t available to read yet! Yikes! The author does give readers a peek into the next book at the end of this book. I can’t wait to read what happens next! This is a must read if you enjoy food, love a cast of quirky and fun characters, want to try new recipes, thinking about opening a restaurant, want to be part of a big family and enjoy hearing about Juliette’s trip to Italy, and France. I enjoyed Neil and Juliette’s long-distance relationship and their family get togethers’. This book is pure fun. It’s a keeper!

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog  www.psalm516.blogspot.com
Book Fun Magazine www.bookfunmagazine.com

MOTHER'S NIGHT OUT by TRICIA GOYER REVIEWED



Mom’s Night Out
By Tricia Goyer
Published by B and H
ISBN#978-1-4336-8482-1
280 Pages

About Book: Moms' Night Out is a novelization of the hilarious family comedy that celebrates real family life—where everything can go wrong and still turn out all right.

All Allyson and her friends want is a peaceful, grown-up evening of dinner and conversation . . . a long-needed moms’ night out. But in order to enjoy high heels, adult conversation and food not served in a bag, they need their husbands to watch the kids for a few hours—what could go wrong?

Chronicling one night out gone awry, three harried moms, their husbands, a sister-in-law with a misplaced baby, a tattoo parlor owner, a motorcycle gang, and a bewildered cabbie all learn to embrace the beautiful mess called parenting. This book spotlights the unfulfilled expectations and serial self-doubts many moms feel . . . then reassures us that the key is raising kids in a loving home. Mom’s Night Out is an endearing, true-to-life comedy.

The MOMS’ NIGHT OUT film features Sarah Drew (Grey’s Anatomy), Sean Astin (THE LORD OF THE RINGS), Patricia Heaton (Everybody Loves Raymond, The Middle), Alex Kendrick (COURAGEOUS), Robert Amaya (COURAGEOUS), Andrea Logan White (REVELATION ROAD), Kevin Downes (COURAGEOUS), and platinum-selling country recording artist Trace Adkins (THE LINCOLN LAWYER)

REVIEW: Thanks to The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org  for a review copy of a book that brought back great memories and made me smile from ear to ear.  I enjoy Tricia Goyer’s books; so when I saw she wrote this novelization I wanted to read it. I knew it would be good but I hadn't realized how much I’d love it. I also had no Idea how much I’d laugh out loud while reading it.

The beginning of the book reminded me of the movie Date Night with Steve Corell and Tina Fay. This busy married couple with busy careers and are in the middle raising small children. They are tired and don’t make time go out much. They finally plan a special night out.  Let’s just say they had a date they’d never forget! These three Moms have a Mother’s Night Out they’d never forget too. Grin!

Allyson looks at her husband Sean and says, “This is my dream (being a mom, staying at home raising them). I’m living it, and I’m not happy…how come I feel like this?”

Sean leaned close to Allyson. He told her only she could answer that question. He said, ”You have to choose to do something for yourself… You have to do it. You’re the only person who can…”
He says it would be good for her to have a night out with her friends, have fun. Unplug – Relax.

Izzy is Allyson’s dear friend who’s just discovered she’s pregnant. She has a set of twins her husband can’t handle now. She can’t imagine telling him the news. She’s in a panic, in denial and can’t wait for this time with the girls.

Sondra is a Pastor’s wife who wears her mask well. “She is the strong one who has to hold it all together at church and at home. She isn't real to anyone including herself. It’s taking a toll on her and her family.”

Funny thing is each of these ladies looks at the other one and thinks they have it all together. They all wonder, “What’s the matter with me?”

Allyson, Izzy, and Sondra agree to have a night of fun. They plan on this for weeks. The night arrives Allyson gets ready and heads to the door. Sean says, “Wow, honey, you look amazing!”

Allyson looks at him, ”Are you sure tonight’s okay? Because I’m starting to feel guilty again.”

“It’s fine. Com’on, yes. You’re gonna have fun. I've got this. I’m not going to call you unless it’s a natural disaster. And then I might not even call you. The house maybe flying…and I’m not even calling you at that point.”

Allyson chuckled, relief flooding her. He cared for her…He really did.”

Allyson gets with her friends and makes an announcement, Ladies, “For one night they weren't going to have to pause their dinner for a potty break. Didn't have to cut someone else’s hot dog into tiny little pieces or refill a sippy cup. They could talk at a normal tone and speak of things other than poo poo and farts. Just the idea of it was a magical thing.”

This book also showed what the Dad’s did while the ladies where having their night out. I don’t know who had more fun the ladies or the guys. Grin!

Sean thinks, “If Sean had learned one thing as a father it was that the best way to handle a house full of kids was to get them out of the house. Staying in the house meant a messy house. Getting out of the house, his kids could mess up some other place and he could walk away. Someone else could pick up pizza crusts off the floor…It was a win, win, win!”

Let the games begin! This was a night everyone would remember. They would become closer, learn more about themselves and each other and relationships. I remember the first time I left my kids with my husband and went to the movies with a friend. I acted a little bit like all of these ladies. That’s what made the book so funny. I saw myself and how I acted. The book also shows how God uses our kids to grow us up! Grin! This author had me in stitches. Being a parent isn’t easy. It’s important to make time to have fun with the girls, with your husband and with your family. There is something to be said about “Unplugging – Relaxing” It gives you a new perspective on things. I loved the message interwoven in the middle of the craziness.

I highly recommend this book for a great book club read and/or just for fun, fun, fun! It’s a must read for any parent no matter the ages of your kids. The movie Mom’s Night Out hits Theaters MAY 9th.

I’m taking my husband out my husband to see this flick. I can’t wait to see this movie! CHECK OUT THE MOVIE TRAILER BELOW! It has a great list of characters! Wow!


Check out the Daily Devotion book. It's subtitled ,"Devotions to help you survive." I'll be reviewing this book soon!







Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins! www.bookfun.org
The Book Club Network blog www.psalm516.bom
Book Fun Magazine www.bookfunmagazine.com 

20 Book Giveaway Opporunity REGINA JENNINGS, BETH WHITE, DAN WALSH

CLICK ON BOOK COVER FOR DESCRIPTION OF BOOK
10 Book Giveaway

CLICK ON BOOK COVER FOR DESCRIPTION OF BOOK
5 Book Drawing

CLICK ON BOOK COVER FOR BOOK DESCRIPTION
5 Book Giveaway

20 Books are available and the contest is underway. ALL ENTRIES are to be made at THE BOOK CLUB NETWORK (www.bookfun.org) You must be a member to enter. It's FREE and EASY to join.

SEE YOU THERE!!

Nora :o)
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
www.bookfun.org 



.

BETH WHITE UP-CLOSE & PERSONAL PLUS 5 BOOK GIVEAWAY OPPORTUNITY




ABOUT BOOK: It is 1704 when Genevieve Gaillain and her sister board a French ship headed for the Louisiana colony as mail-order brides. Both have promised to marry one of the rough-and-tumble Canadian men in this New World in order to escape religious persecution in the Old World. Genevieve knows life won't be easy, but at least here she can establish a home and family without fear of beheading. But when she falls in love with Tristan Lanier, an expatriate cartographer whose courageous stand for fair treatment of native peoples has made him decidedly unpopular in the young colony, Genevieve realizes that even in this land of liberty one is not guaranteed peace. And a secret she harbors could mean the undoing of the colony itself.

Gulf Coast native Beth White brings vividly to life the hot, sultry south in this luscious, layered story of the lengths we must go to in order to be true to ourselves, our faith, and our deepest loves.

ABOUT AUTHOR: Beth White's day job is teaching music at an inner-city high school in historic Mobile, Alabama. A native Mississippian, she is a pastor's wife, mother of two, and grandmother of one--so far. Her hobbies include playing flute and pennywhistle and painting, but her real passion is writing historical romance with a Southern drawl. Her novels have won the American Christian Fiction Writers Carol Award, the RT Book Club Reviewers Choice Award, and the Inspirational Reader's Choice Award. Visit www.bethwhite.net for more information.

What was your favorite scene in The Pelican Bride? Which was the most fun to write?

My favorite scene is Geneviève and Tristan’s wedding day/night. I hope that isn't a spoiler—after all, this is a “mail-order bride” story! The funny thing is, when I plotted the book, I really didn’t know when they would get married. In a typical romance, the wedding is the emotional high point, and I was afraid that if my characters married too early in the story, some of the tension would drain. So I was surprised and delighted when those two characters sort of “told” me: “this is how we’re doing this, so write it down!” And I think it worked beautifully. Beyond that, I don’t want to spoil any surprises for those who haven’t read the book.
Daughter - Daughter-In-Law w/me @a wedding Thanksgiving 2013

My daughter Hannah’s bridal portrait. Wedding Sash —She’s wearing one of my creations, an heirloom sash I made from fabric flowers,beads and embroidery.









Nora: Lovely family Beth.

How much research do you put into your historicals? Did you discover some fascinating tales that made it in your book? Some that didn't?
Historic French fort near Montgomery AL
I am a fanatical researcher. I visit museums, pore over historical websites, study antique fashion plates and cookbooks, read historical journals. I bought and read a big fat history of old Mobile—Fort Louis de la Louisiane, 1701-1711, by Professor Jay Higginbotham—cover to cover. There are sticky notes all in it, where details of the lives of real people played out.

Fort Toulouse
One of the more fascinating side notes was about a young woman named Gabrielle Bonnet, who apparently went insane and took to walking around in her underwear. No other info at all. It wasn’t much trouble to imagine what would have caused that, considering the privations those women endured—so this poor girl became my Ysabeau.

Part of the plot of Pelican Bride involves the fear of the British attacking the fort. There were actually some shots fired at one point, but that didn’t make it into the book. Believe it or not, there was plenty of conflict already!

Nora: Oh, Beth I think I'd like to go with you on one of your trips and see things the way you do; finding the pieces you need to create your next book and weave them into your surprise plot twists for your next book. Thanks for the fun pictures!


In growing up, what were three important values you learned that stuck with you and shaped your life?
My & my three sisters w/me at lunch

I can think of more than three, but I’ll start with the love of reading. My dad had me sitting in his lap reading the “funny papers” when I was about three, and he always had a paperback novel by his recliner when he had a chance to relax. My mom introduced me to Victoria Holt and Phyllis Whitney gothics when I was a teenager. And my three younger sisters and I would ride our bikes to the public library every Saturday, load up the baskets, and read our brains out!


Nora: I wasn't close enough to a library to ride my bike there.  Fun memories.Wish I could have heard you all sing in college. Looks like a blast!
Drawntogether third from right singing in Christian band courthouse in Carthage, Mississippi
My sisters and I were taught to love music and church in about equal measures as well. Our parents were definitely lower-middle-class, but they managed to pay for piano lessons, guitars and band instruments, and sheet music. We’re all singers as well, and my dad played harmonica and a little guitar. I became a soloist in church as a child, and all of us were in church youth choirs from the ground up. I made an early profession of faith in Jesus as a nine-year-old, after an Easter Sunday message. Vacation Bible School and Sunday School and missions activities were a major part of my life.
LeFlore Choir-Parents Appreciation night Mobile
Another value that shaped me was the pursuit of knowledge as a way to elevate my life. My parents never threatened to punish us if we didn’t study, but completing homework and studying for tests and doing our best was an accepted part of life. I loved making my parents proud of me (probably the “eldest child syndrome”), so I rarely made less than an A on my report card. I think that’s why I pursued writing as a hobby to begin with; it was a way to learn about fascinating topics and people. Assimilating and synthesizing information, then telling it in an entertaining fashion—to me, that a perfect product of education!


Nora: Oh, Yeah! I'm thrilled so many get to enjoy the entertainment you create and learn a thing or two along the way! Grin!

What three things are you most thankful for in life?

Family Quilt Fest
I’m thankful for my Mississippi family heritage, which is based on the Christian faith and hard work and close-knit relationships. I’m thankful for my handsome, godly, funny, hard-working, ubersmart husband, Scott—and the fact that we’ve been married for thirty-three years. And I’m thankful for two great kids—both of them Christ-followers who have married Christ-followers—and my grandchildren, 3-year-old Judah and soon-to-be-born Rosalyn. I’m a happy BeBe!


Family Not-Necessarily-Talented-Talent-Show in conjunction with the quilt fest
My son Ryan, his wife Nicole, Hannah, Larry, Judah and me

























Nora: Love the quilt. Beautiful. It looks like a great at the Talent Show! Fun family times! Great memories!

Can you give us a sneak peek into what you are working on now? When will it be out?

My husband Scott showing 3 Yr old grandson Judah silly string
I’m working on the first draft of The Creole Princess. It’s a sequel to The Pelican Bride, but it’s set 75 years later. The heroine is a descendent of Geneviève and Tristan, and the hero is a Spanish spy, helping to fund the American Revolution. There are pirates. There are British redcoats. There is Spanish gold. There are people imprisoned for disseminating the Declaration of Independence. There is, above all, ROMANCE!!!

The Creole Princess should release about this time next year. Is this where I whine about my full-time teaching job, which makes me a slow writer?

Nora: Sounds like a fun sequel!

You are shipwrecked on an uninhabited tropical island with a group of Christians – all friends and relatives of yours. You all have to work as a team to survive. Many roles have to be filled. Which role do you think you’d play?

I would be the one figuring out how to weave blouses and skirts out of palm fronds. I would certainly not be the hunter or the cook!

Nora: I'm with you Beth. No hunting for me. I might try to catch a fish but I can only cook with cook books. Alas there wouldn't be any! Grin!

Young Man fashion inspiration for Pelican Bride
A friend of yours has a time machine and they will let you use it for a while. Where would you go and what would you do?

I would go to Regency England and look over Jane Austen’s shoulder as she wrote Emma. I want to know if she giggled as she wrote, as I did when I read it the third time.

Nora: Yes, It would be fun to see!

What two jobs have you had that would surprise people? Do tell!

I worked three summers in a row, during my college years, at a Taco Bell in Memphis. Can you picture me frying taco shells? Um, yeah. Well, I did. I also did a stint one summer as an inventory clerk, counting bolts and snow shoes and cigarette lighters (among other things) at the Defense Depot in Memphis.

Out of all the sounds in the world which are your favorite?
LeFlore Choir


Hearing my choir at John L. LeFlore Magnet High School sing “The Lord Bless You and Keep You” with a seven-fold “amen” at the end. That’s right up there with my grandson, Judah, singing “You Are My Sunshine.”


There are so many types of weather which is your favorite? Which do you try to avoid?

I live on the Gulf Coast, and I like early morning summertime heat. I’ve never been a big fan of snow and ice. I don’t like to be cold!

Nora: Cold weather is a great time to be by the fire place reading books! Grin!

We all live busy lives and all of us are in different seasons of life; what as a given what part of your day requires the most patience from you to get through? Causes you to pray the most?

Well, I’m a high school music teacher. The hardest thing for me is when I have a lazy beginner choir class. I love to teach kids who are motivated to absorb all the fun things there are about making music, but when I get students with a “whatever” or combative attitude, it’s hard to be patient enough to find strategies that will wake them up and change their minds. Most of the time, it’s a matter of teasing them, laughing, and creating fun experiences for them—I have to initiate the good attitude. And that takes a lot of prayer!

Beth: Well, Nora you've encouraged me to ask questions for TBCN readers to enter the contest. So I want to know:

When a book doesn’t grab you right off the bat, how long do you keep reading before you give up and put the book down? Do you always finish books you start?

Personally, I’m an impatient reader. If the first chapter doesn't appeal, I usually won’t keep reading (life’s too short).

Nora: (This is just one of the fun questions BETH asked readers to answer at The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org to be ENTERED into the DRAWING Revell Publishers is giving away 5 copies of Beth's new book The Pelican Bride at TBCN www.bookfun. ENTER TODAY! You must be a member to join it's fun and easy!

BETH, ANY FINAL COMMENTS FOR READERS?
Yes, I can’t tell you how thrilling it is to have a chance to interact with people who have read my stories, especially in person. Getting emails from readers is one thing that keeps me at it! So if you read The Pelican Bride, I’d love to hear from you.

Thanks for stopping by and helping us get to know you and your books. THANKS for all your great pictures. LOVED that!

I’m thrilled about the Giveaway Opportunity at TBCN that started 20th and runs until the last day of April.  Looking forward to it to reading the answers to your questions and the interaction between you and readers! It’s always so much fun!

SEE EVERYONE AT TBCN! Thanks again for a great interview Beth!

Sincerely,

Nora St. Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!

DAN WALSH TALKS ABOUT NEW BOOK AND 5 BOOK GIVEAWAY



ABOUT AUTHOR: Dan Walsh is the award-winning and bestselling author of 7 novels, published by Revell and Guideposts, including The Unfinished Gift, Remembering Christmas and The Reunion. Reviewers often compare Dan’s books to Nicholas Sparks. His latest project is a 4-book fiction series with Gary Smalley. The first book, The Dance, just released. A member of American Christian Fiction Writers (ACFW), Dan now writes fulltime in Port Orange, FL. He and his wife Cindi have been married 36 years. You can email him or follow him on Facebook or Twitter. There are buttons to connect to these on his website: www.DanWalshBooks.com  

 I'm THRILLED to be featuring Dan Walsh's new book at The Book Club Network this month. I'm also excited to talk about his new book What Follows After? It was an interesting taking a trip back to a time where a fire was brewing. I wanted to have readers get to know another side of this author and his writing. Readers will get a peek at the heart of Dan Walsh and his new novel.

It's funny how little Timmy's parents actually talked about stuff that mattered to them as a couple. When do you think that changed and communication opened up between husbands and wives?

Dan: I don’t think they ever would have faced some of the serious issues in their marriage apart from the crisis they faced. It forced them to be together and to look at things they were successfully avoiding until then. That’s one of the themes in the book I wanted to highlight; how adversity, even times of crisis, can lead to better things down the road.

Nora: You did a good job with that in this novel. I think you are right about adversity bringing people together and allowing them to share things they normally wouldn't.

Keeping up appearances was important to Timmy's parents. It was amazing how long this couple kept up the appearance of being together when they weren't. What was the stigma back then? Why go to great lengths to appear as an intact family unit?

Dan: It’s hard for modern Americans, especially younger ones, to fathom what Scott and Gina did to keep the facade of a happy marriage going. Now, more than half the marriages end in divorce. In the 50s and early 60s, that wasn't the case. As an example, I only knew one kid in all of my elementary school years who came from a broken home. Every kid in my neighborhood (and it was filled with young families) lived with both parents. And every single one of them came home from school to find a mom waiting there for him. If you look at all the TV shows and movies of that era, couples were all portrayed as married. No one was shown as divorced. Divorce was perceived as a major moral failure.

Nora: Wow, I hadn't realized that. Wow! There would be great pressure for Scott and Gina to hide their trouble. It would be really hard on them and their kids of the truth came out! Thanks for sharing this insight!

The "Camelot years" (you talked about in the back of your novel)…what did you discover about that time doing your research that you hadn't recalled before? It's amazing all that was hidden from the American public (as we've now learned).

Dan: For one thing, the press had a totally different role in American life than they do now. Most of the Washington press corps, for example, knew JFK was a horrible womanizer (even while in the White House), but never reported on it. Legally, they could have, but no one did. After the Vietnam war and Watergate that all changed. Now the press is on the hunt, looking for negative things to report. If the press today practiced the same things then, Camelot would never have happened, and no one would have looked at JFK and Jackie as “the ideal couple.” I think they would have loved her and despised him.

Nora: You are right about the press playing a different role in our lives today and the fact that they are on the hunt to report bad things, so true.

They tried to sell us on the "American Dream." In your research did you uncover why this Dream was being sold to the masses? What was it exactly they told every American they could have? Why was that important to obtain?

Dan: I think the American Dream wasn't sold as the chance to become wealthy, but to attain a secure status among the middle class. Having a good job, a happy family, a nice house in the suburbs, a new car to drive, a houseful of modern time-saving appliances. I believe it was driven by the onslaught of television, TV commercials and popular magazines. The media constantly fed this image to the American consumer, who bought into the illusion. Everyone perceived that achieving this American Dream equaled true happiness. Even though decades later, life has proven this to be untrue, many people still buy into this deception.

Nora: Thanks for sharing this Dan. You are right about people still buying into the deception the media tries to tell us every day about how we should look, dress, eat and car to drive  and so much more. With T.V. being so new back then I can see the power it had.

I was small when President Kennedy was killed, then Martin Luther King and the President’s brother and Martin Luther King were killed. So much pain and craziness. My parents didn't explain much to me. I remember watching people crying on T.V. I was small and didn't understand. I was upset that I couldn't watch cartoons. In your research when did parents start really talking to their kids about things that mattered?

Dan: Certainly not in the 60s or the 70s. I can’t recall a single conversation with my parents, especially my father, about anything that mattered in life. I think this began to change as the children raised during this time started having kids of their own, possibly wanting to correct the neglect they experienced. But I also think it’s come about because the world has become a much darker place now. The dangerous and harmful influences outside the home are so abundant and pervasive. If we don’t talk to our children about things that matter, they don’t stand a chance of resisting the pull in that direction.

Nora: You are right about the world being a darker place. With the internet and cell phones we don't know what our parents knew about us because we had one phone for everyone to talk on and there was no internet where you could talk to people all over the world at all hours of the day and night. Our kids can get in a harmful situation pretty quick. I couldn't agree with you more when you said. "If we don't talk to our children about things that matter, they don't' stand a chance of resisting the pull in that direction." It keeps me on me praying Dan! 

You mention that we were considered a Christian Country, What has changed for the good? How is our society different? Better? Worse in our search to draw closer to God personally and as a family?

Dan: As I mention in the Author’s Note at the back of the book, a lot of societal issues in the “Camelot years,” represented terrible injustices, wrongs that needed to be righted. Like the discrimination blacks experienced, and women. Certainly, the press covering up for corrupt politicians was a bad thing that needed to change. But sadly, I believe many of our “solutions” have swung the pendulum past a healthy, balanced middle to an unhealthy extreme. As a result, many of the people groups we intended to help through these fixes are worse off than they were before.

Nora: I appreciated what all that you said on your Author's Note page. Thanks!

How are marriages better now then they were in the 60s and 70s? Family unit different?
 
Cindi & I cutting our wedding cake Oct'76
Dan: I don’t believe marriages are better now and, for the most part, family units are further apart than ever. The statistics bear this out. Life for American families is worse now than at any time in our history. The divorce rate, domestic violence and child abuse numbers, teenage suicides, drug and alcohol abuse, kids taking drugs for depression…all these stats are off the charts now. Having said that, as Jesus said, there is “a narrow road that leads to life.” For couples and families who long to beat these odds, there are an abundance of great books, videos and magazines devoted to helping people receive the practical wisdom and insight found in Scripture.

Nora: I agree with you Dan. There is an abundance of material to help you on "the road of life." I think people are more willing to be real with one another with their spouses, children and in the church. I think that's a good thing too!

In your research what had you thought as a kid to be true then find out, it wasn't how it really was?

Dan: Obviously, the first big shakeup was Santa Claus. But there were far more serious things. After the JFK assassination, the escalation of the war in Vietnam and the assassinations of Bobbie Kennedy and Martin Luther King, I realized the world was no longer a safe place. The news broadcasts depicting racism in the US, especially in the South, made me realize that black children in America weren't having the Leave it to Beaver childhood I had. Growing up through the cultural revolution of the 60s, I witnessed an entire generation of young people rejecting everything their parents stood for. My idealistic childhood ended up anything but by the time I graduated high school.

Nora: Dan I felt the same way. I couldn't believe everyone was lying about this guy! Ha! My parents went to get lengths to make this real to us. We drove from N.J. to FL every year on vacation. The presents arrived while we were gone and special decorations put up. I was a believer for way to long! Grin! They were crazy - eye opening times. Thanks for sharing Dan!

It was interesting to read about the bomb shelters and how some people had then. Did you see the movie Blast from the Past? It's about a father that had been preparing the bomb shelter for his family. A plane hits their property and he thinks the bombing has started. They lock themselves into the bomb shelter and set the timer. His wife has a baby down there and they raise their child in the shelter. They re-surface  when the child is about 20. Brandon Frazer plays the young man. LOVED that show. 

Question: I was wondering if you ever went inside one. Found out in your research if any of the bomb shelters really did what they were meant to do if there was serious trouble? What fascinated you enough about this topic to include it in your book?
Our first home in Daytona Beach, FL, in one of the neighborhoods the story takes place.
Dan: One of my childhood homes in Florida is portrayed in the book, very similar to the home Colt and Timmy lived in. Three doors down, the house on the corner had a bomb shelter very similar to what I described. And we did sneak in there to play army. One of my high school friend’s father built one right around the time of the Cuban Missile Crisis. By then, the danger had long past. He was a photography buff and used it for his dark room. I did see Blast From The Past, a very fun movie. I never saw a bomb shelter that elaborate, even in my research. I included it in the book because it was a very real consideration for people at the time. In fact, many contractors jumped on the bandwagon and made a small fortune building these shelters in the early 60s.

Nora: Blast From the Past did have a huge house underground, I didn't think one could be so large.
Interesting to hear that people were really considering having one of these for their use. Fun to learn you used one of your childhood homes in your new book.

Is there anything you miss about your childhood that you wished you could have experienced with your kids and/or grand-kids that they just don't do and/or have anymore? Something you really loved that went away and you'd wish they would bring back? A treasured childhood memory or even?
 
Dan at 5 or 6 yrs old
Dan: A fun question. I have often tried to communicate to my kids, who are now adults, how very different America was in the late 50s and early 60s (the hidden injustices I've already mentioned, notwithstanding). I can tell, they have no reference point for what I’m saying. For example, imagine living in a neighborhood where everyone knows everyone. Where parents can send their kids out to play after dinner until dark with absolutely no concern for their safety. The amazing music filling the air as the ice cream truck enters the neighborhood, stopping every kid in their tracks (and, incidentally, every one of them is playing outside). A classroom with one teacher instructing 40 kids, all day, and no one causing any trouble (not even talking in class). Having childhood sports heroes who aspire to earn fans respect and stay loyal to the same team throughout their careers. So many other examples are flying through my head.

Nora: Good points. I didn't even think about sending my kids out to play by themselves I was always there and/or had others on watch. There was a time when I let my kids go out in the front yard when we lived in Florida (there was a big picture window we could see outside from.) My husband ran outside yelling when we saw our 5 year old heading toward a strangers' car (even when we told them not to do that Grin). The car drove away and my son said the man asked him to help find his rabbit. OHMYGOSH! Now we pray for our kids as they head off to High School hoping no one gets knifed or shot at that day. Yes, times have changed. I really grasped the sense of how much when I read about Timmy's situation in What Follows After, it could have been so much worse had it happened today!

Thanks again for stopping by Dan and sharing your heart and about your new book What Follows after. LOVE the Pictures too Dan!

The Contest is underway. Head on over to TBCN - The Book Club Network www.bookfun.org It's FREE and EASY to join. You must be a member to participate.

You can encourage Dan here and comment on this interview but ALL entries to the 5 Book Drawing for Dan's new book will be made at TBCN www.bookfun.org  

SEE YOU THERE

Nora :o)
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
www.bookfun.org 

24 HOUR SALE - .99 CENTS THREE GREAT BOOKS - GRAB WHILE YOU CAN


Ashes in the Wind by Peggy Levesque

5 x 5 star reviews



 Dawnlight: When the World is Changed Forever
by Kacy Barnett-Gramckow
7 x 5 star reviews





The Song: The Ultimate Love Story by Thomas Lochnicht
3 x 5 star reviews




Offer ENDS SOON! Great Stories! Great Deals!

Nora St.Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
www.bookfun.org 



CABBAGE PATCH BIRTHING CENTER - GREAT FUN!

My husband Fred is full of surprises. Last weekend he told me to be ready in 30 minutes we were going for a ride. He wasn't going to tell me where we were going. I watched him get the cooler and put a few snacks with bottled water in there. I was thinking we'll be gone for a while. HOORAY!!

Fred then asks me, "Do you want me to tell you where we're going?" 
"If you want to!"
"I don't want to." He smiles. Then says, "I'll give you a hint. It's a place I'd never go to but I know you'll love, so that's why we're going! Besides we haven't been out on an adventure in a while." He smiles from ear to ear.

I'm good! I don't need to know where I'm going. I'm with someone I love to hang out with and we're on an adventure. It's a GREAT DAY!! We were stuck in traffic for a while due to the Easter Parade. Nothing bothered us because we were on adventure.
Cabbage Patch Characters taking Pictures with kids

Little Cabbages filled with Kids everywhere
Cabbage Patch Nurse at her Station in Museum






















Then we pulled up to the CABBAGE PATCH CENTER!! OHMYGOSH! There were so many people there. It was quite the place. The grounds were covered with people set up selling gift items and food. Fred and I both wanted to try the Alligator. Grin! The FIRST thing we did was go inside and see the Museum they had set up to look at as you wanted to go inside the store. I have the History of the Cabbage Patch Doll at the end of this post. It was fascinating to read. I remember how people went crazy for these dolls one year for the Day after Thanksgiving sale. I think one person even died. Crazy! They are adorable.

Baby Land Delivery Nursery Fun
Expensive original dolls displayed in Museum
Fred makes Me Laugh
Sweet Dolls
Waiting in line to get a picture
A sweet doll caught my eye 
Fred taking a picture of me taking a picture Grin!














THANK YOU LOVE for a GREAT and MEMORABLE DAY! I know this was a sacrifice for you! THANKS for the great surprise! We didn't get to taste the Alligator because we didn't realize it was a CASH ONLY event. We had our Debit cards with us and all the vendors took cash.Maybe NEXT TIME! Grin!


I did get a memento see below. Here is also a little Cabbage doll I've had for years. Anyone know where I can get her some clothes! Grin!

My Momentoes from Cabbage Patch Center $1.99 each Oh, Yeah!
A Mini Cabbage Patch Coll

Signature on the Back lets you know it's the REAL DEAL!
Just wanted to share this GREAT day and all the FUN we had at the CABBAGE PATCH CENTER. I have a grandson if the Lord gives a granddaughter I know the place we have to take her. Grin! Below is the only Cabbage Patch doll I own. She's a Cabbage Patch mini! Does anyone know where to get clothes for this little one? I've seemed to lost them years ago. Grin!

They have a calendar of events that happen at the CABBAGE PATCH CENTER!! They have an Easter Egg Hunt this weekend. I might be back there sooner than I think! Grin!

Nora St.Laurent
TBCN Where Book Fun Begins!
www.bookfun.org


CABBAGE PATCH HISTORY BEGAN in 1976

Early soft-sculpture: “Face in a Hat”
As a 21 year old art student, Xavier Roberts rediscovers “needle molding” a German technique for fabric sculpture from the early 1800s. Combining his interest in sculpture with the quilting skills passed down from his mother, Xavier creates his first soft-sculptures.

1977
While working his way through school as manager of the Unicoi Craft Shop in Helen, Georgia, Xavier develops the marketing concept of adoptable Little People® with birth certificates.

Dexter wins a first place ribbon for sculpture at the Osceola Art Show.
Xavier begins delivering his hand made Little People Originals and exhibiting them at arts and crafts shows in the southeast. He finds that many parents are happy to pay the $40.00 “adoption fee” for one of his hand signed Little People Originals.

Xavier wins a first place ribbon for sculpture with “Dexter” at the Osceola Art Show in Kissimmee, Florida. Returning home to Georgia, he organizes five school friends and incorporates Original Appalachian Artworks, Inc. Xavier and his friends renovate the L.G. Neal Clinic, a turn of the century medical facility in Cleveland, Georgia, opening “BabyLand General® Hospital” to the public.

1981
Atlanta Weekly Magazine
The growing success of Xavier’s hand made Little People Originals is documented by Newsweek, The Wall Street Journal, The Atlanta Weekly, and many others. There are reports that earlier editions are re-adopting for as much as 100 times their initial adoption fee.

1982
Original Appalachian Artworks, Inc. signs a long term licensing agreement allowing a major toy manufacturer to produce a Toy replica of Xavier’s handmade soft sculpture Originals. These Toy versions are recognizable by their smaller size, vinyl head and adoption fees usually under $30.00. At the same time, the name Little People® is changed to the “Cabbage Patch Kids®” which is used for both the Toys and the handmade Originals.

1983
Newsweek
By the end of the year almost 3 million of the Cabbage Patch Kids Toys have been adopted but demand has not been met. The Cabbage Patch Kids Toys go on record as the most successful new doll introduction in the history of the toy industry. In December, they are featured on the cover of Newsweek.

1985 
The Cabbage Patch Kids join the Young Astronaut Program and “Christopher Xavier” becomes the first Cabbage Patch Kid to journey into outer space as a passenger on the U.S. Space Shuttle.

1990
With 65 million Cabbage Patch Kids Toys adopted to date, their continuing popularity places the Cabbage Patch Kids Brand among the top 10 best selling of the year. Meanwhile the handmade Originals, with adoption fees of $190.00 and up, remain popular with collectors.

1992
The Cabbage Patch Kids are honored by being named the first official mascot of the U.S. Olympic Team. They travel with the athletes to Barcelona for the games and many stay behind as “Friends For Life” with patients of a local children’s hospital.

1995
The Cabbage Patch Kids are once again honored to be named the official mascot of the 1996 U.S. Olympic Team for the summer games in Atlanta. That same year Mildred, one of the earliest Little People readopts for $20,000.

1996
For the first time ever, limited numbers of hand made Original Cabbage Patch Kids U.S. Team mascots are offered for adoption at fees of $275.00 each. These Originals represent 12 different Olympic Sports.

1999
A nationwide public vote selects Cabbage Patch Kids as one of 15 stamps commemorating the 1980s in the U.S. Postal Service’s Celebrate The Century stamp program.

2000
The Cabbage Patch Kids stamp goes on sale in January of 2000.

2001
2001 Cabbage Patch Kids are now delivered in the Toys ‘R Us flagship store on Times Square. The introduction of an exclusive line of Cabbage Patch Kids coincides with the launch of the new 110,000 square-foot store.

2002
A minute after midnight on January 1, Cabbage Patch Kid twins were born at Toys ‘R Us Times Square. Bonnie Ellen and Geoffrey Wallace in honor of Geoffrey the Giraffe, Toys ‘R Us Mascot, weighed in at 7 pounds, 4 ounces and 18 inches in length. Nine-year-old Hallie Kate Eisenberg adopted the twins, then took the official Oath of Adoption. The child actor has starred in nine movies including “The Insider” (1999) with Al Pacino and “Bicentennial Man” (1999) with Robin Williams.

The National Roll Out for TRU ‘Kids is held on July 27th at the Toys ‘R Us in Alpharetta, Ga. Every Cabbage Patch Kid in the store is adopted in less than 15 minutes.

BabyLand General Hospital ends the year in third place in the Travel Channel’s Top 10 Toylands across the nation.

2003
BabyLand General Hospital celebrates 25 years of delivering babies.

Collector enthusiasm heightens with the introduction of an exclusive Spring Event baby. Adopting for $325, one little ‘Kid was re-adopted a few months later on eBay for more than double her original fee.
At the request of the Georgia Department of Industry, Trade and Tourism, Cabbage Patch Kids became little ambassadors at the North Atlantic Treaty Organization (NATO) Open House in Brussels, Belgium, which showcased a Holiday in the South. Logan Michael, wearing a cadet’s parade dress uniform, escorted his sister Lauren Grace to this event.

Xavier Roberts closes the year serving as Grand Marshal of the Festival of Trees parade in Atlanta. He holds his first public Signing Party in 15 years in Georgia. The Cabbage Patch delivered a Festival of Trees Exclusive to help raise funds for the Children’s Health Care of Atlanta. The nine-day event drew 150,000 people.

This History is from their website HERE is the LINK to their WEBSITE https://www.cabbagepatchkids.com/ Check out this place and their calendar of events.

Who Knew? THANKS Again to my husband Fred for a memorable day!

Nora :o)