Would You Read It Wednesday #120 – The STEM Girls: Rising Stars (PB) AND The Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show Winners!

You don’t have to tell me.

The Groundhogs’ unanimous prediction that we’d have 6 more weeks of winter was a little hard to take.

As we are currently being buried under what some say will be 6-12 inches of snow (and what others are saying will be 12-15 inches, and still others are saying 30+ inches) I guess they’re right so far.  Dang and blast the little marmots!

(Uh, please don’t tell Phyllis I said that!)

This calls for Something Chocolate.  And I have the perfect thing:  Happy Cake!

Don’t you feel better just looking at it?  Doesn’t it make you believe spring will come?  Soon?

I thought so 🙂

Help yourselves! 🙂

Now then.  Before we get to today’s Would You Read It pitch, we have a small matter of business to attend to….

Ironing our socks!

Hee hee hee!  I’m just funnin’ y’all 🙂

I know the real order of business is….

Who won Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show???

And the answer is…

Did I tell you about how Princess Blue Kitty (my car, for anyone who hasn’t had the pleasure of making her acquaintance :)) is absolutely filthy?  Seriously, I have a theory that they put more salt and sand on the roads at the first hint of snow than they ever used to… Why, when I was a mere sprat, it could snow 2 feet and nary a morsel of salt nor sand did we see!  We just had to tough our way through it, depending on the survival lessons our Maw and Paw had taught us in our upper east side apartments about how kitty litter makes for great traction…

I’m sorry.  What were we talking about?

I believe I may have gone off on a tangent.

If you would all kindly stop distracting me with ridiculous stories about your cars, I would tell you that the winner of Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show was none other than


Congratulations, Josie!  Apparently I wasn’t the only one who loved your sweet sleepytime Phyllis in her cozy pink PJs and slippers with her lovable teddy!  Great job!

2nd Place goes to Gracie for her stunning depiction of Springtime Phyllis!  Congratulations on a gorgeous drawing, Gracie!

Interesting, isn’t it, that first and second place went to 8 year olds?!  I think it’s clear that the youngsters in this crowd are mighty talented!

3rd Place was a tie between Julie Ro-Zo with her incredible Phyllis-as-Elvis drawing, Nata with Phyllis’s Allonge, and Beth with Opera Star Phyllis.  (I told you we had a tie problem!)  Congratulations, you three!  You are exceptionally talented for people who are technically older than 8 (although we know you are young at heart :))

Josie, Gracie, Julie, Nata-ie, and Bethie, (I didn’t think we should break up the streak of -ie names :)) please email me and we’ll get those prizes sorted out!  (And in case you’ve forgotten what the prizes are, you may view them HERE, and you may all have your choice of whichever one you want, even if you all want the same thing.  Oh!  And Pat Miller kindly offered to sign a bookplate for anyone who chooses Substitute Groundhog!)

Thanks to EVERYONE who participated in the Fashion Show!  You are all SO creative and talented, and supplied all of us with SUCH enjoyment during this wintry week!  Phyllis has never felt so well dressed!!! 🙂

My, that was exciting!  But now we have something equally exciting in a different way…

Today’s pitch comes to us from Kristine who says, “I’m a stay-at-home mom who is truly living the dream: playing with my daughter by day and writing (if I don’t fall asleep first) at night.  I couldn’t be happier to have found the amazing children’s book writing community that exists online, and I look forward to the day when I can fill a bookshelf with works by authors that I also can call friends.

Here is her pitch:

Working Title: The STEM Girls: Rising Stars
Age/Genre: Picture Book (ages 5-8)
The Pitch: Sophia, Isabella, Madison, and Emma learn that science is not only fun, but an adventure, when their new telescope runs out of batteries, and they have to use their combined talents to save their stargazing trip. The girls are as enthusiastic about science, technology, engineering, and math – the STEM subjects – as Fancy Nancy is about being a girly girl, and they even have their own STEM Girls club to prove it. They invite readers to join them on their adventure, asking “Do you have what it takes to be a STEM Girl?”

So what do you think?  Would You Read It?  YES, MAYBE or NO?

If your answer is YES, please feel free to tell us what you particularly liked and why the pitch piqued your interest.  If your answer is MAYBE or NO, please feel free to tell us what you think could be better in the spirit of helping Kristine improve her pitch.  Helpful examples of possible alternate wordings are welcome.  (However, I must ask that comments be constructive and respectful.  I reserve the right not to publish comments that are mean because that is not what this is about.)
Please send YOUR pitches for the coming weeks!  For rules and where to submit, click on this link Would You Read It or on the Would You Read It tab in the bar above.  There are openings in March so you’ve got a little time to polish up your pitches and send yours for your chance to be read by editor Erin Molta!

Kristine is looking forward to your thoughts on her pitch!  I am looking forward to Friday because I have a most excellent book to share with you for PPBF, and also to not being snowed in anymore because we have done that enough times already and the novelty has worn off!

Have a wonderful Wednesday everyone!!! 🙂

Happy Groundhog Day! Early Spring Or 6 More Weeks? AND Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show!

It’s here!  It’s here!  It’s finally here!


Here on Blueberry Hill this is cause for great excitement.  It’s the day of days!  The moment Phyllis waits for ALL YEAR!

As you may know, this winter on Blueberry Hill has been a crazy one with the weather either unusually balmy for January (you remember those 2 days when it rained and flooded the basement…) or unusually arctic with day after sub-zero day (the vast majority of this frigid January!)

As a result, Some People have spent most of the winter holed up drinking hot chocolate with not-so-mini-marshmallows attempting not to become a groundhog ice cube!

Now, at long last, it’s time to see what everybody’s favorite groundhog has to say: early spring, or 6 more weeks of winter?

And so, Punxsutawney Phyllis, Sage of Sages, Seer of Seers, Prognosticator of Prognosticators, and Weather Prophet Extraordinaire did set forth from her burrow on Blueberry Hill this Sunday February 2, 2014  at 7:25 AM under sunny skies with a calm wind, 82% humidity and 28 degrees, and declare: “There’s my shadow!  6 MORE WEEKS OF WINTER!

Though I am disappointed to hear that winter plans to hang around, I certainly enjoyed watching the show.  Phyllis does everything with flair 🙂  Here she is making her prediction in my Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show sample (which I totally cheated on by getting my daughter to execute my idea in photoshop because I – shockingly – have not learned how to use it since Monday!)

All Weather Phyllis – idea by me, execution by Katie 🙂

And now, in celebration of Groundhog Day, I want to welcome you to an exclusive showing of top fashion by outstanding designers, some of them very new to the world of fashion – the very hautest in haute couture!

Prepare yourselves…

(and I mean really)

… because here comes Phyllis on the runway!

Please enjoy these fabulous, show-stopping designs, and then vote for your favorite at the end!

#1 Steampunk Phyllis by Stacy

#2 Olympic Phyllis by Katie

#3 Ain’t Nothin’ But A Groundhog by Julie

#4 Spring Phyllis by Gracie

#5 Done With Glum Phyllis by Linda

#6 Periscope Phyllis by Sue H

#7 Queen Phyllis of the Krewe of Marmotte by Keila

#8 Mariachi Phyllis by Arturo

#9 Skiing Phyllis by Sue H

#10 Birthday Suit Phyllis by Vivian

#11 Sunday Best Phyllis by Heather G

#12 Opera Star Phyllis by Beth

#13 Glow-In-The-Dark Phyllis by Catherine

#14 Divergent Phyllis by Stacy

#15 Rock Star Phyllis by Jenny

#16 Paradise Phyllis by Angie

#17 Phyllis’s Allongé by Nata

#18 Maori Phyllis by Diane

#19 Ballerina Phyllis by Anna

#20 Sleepy Phyllis by Josie

#21 Princess Phyllis Organa by Erik

#22 Gala Phyllis by Meg

#23 Square Dance Phyllis by Penny

#24 Chef Phyllis by Neighbor Girl

#25 Dragon Tail Phyllis by Sue M

#26 Fashion Phyllis Extravaganza by the Maynard Kids

Wow!  That is a lot of fashion designing talent!  You guys are amazing!  Please vote for your favorite in the poll below by Tuesday February 4 at 5PM EST!  Prizes will be awarded Wednesday during Would You Read It!

Happy Groundhog Day Everyone!  And may spring be in your hearts 🙂

Time For Some Fun!!!

So, here we are.

It’s still January.

It’s dark.

It’s really, really, really COLD.

And Spring seems like an impossible dream.

We could wallow in the doldrums…

…but I say, LET’S HAVE SOME FUN!!! 🙂

(Yep.  You know what that means.  Time for another Hare Brained Scheme! :))

As some of you may realize, GROUNDHOG DAY is nearly upon us.  (And in case you DON’T realize, someone at my house who gets VERY excited about it is here to remind you!)

This whole thing is her idea.  She was worried you might not even REMEMBER Groundhog Day (quel horreur!), what with all the hiding out indoors under piles of blankets due to that pesky polar vortex, and that would be UNTHINKABLE!

Therefore, in celebration…


..we are going to have Phyllis’s Fun Fashion Show!!!

It will be easy and fun and everyone can join in, and there will be prizes!!!

Here’s what to do:

Think up something you think Phyllis would look dazzling in.  An evening gown?  A loin cloth?  An Eskimo parka and mukluks?  A polka-dot bikini?  A sari?  A sundress?  A kimono?  A burlap sack?  Jeans and a t-shirt?  A pineapple?  A Broncos sweatshirt?  Or a Seahawks sweatshirt?  Whatever you like!  Let your inner fashion goddess/god run wild! 🙂

Then dress her up!

And feel free to accessorize!  Hats, handbags, scarves, jewelry, shoes/boots, spurs, parrots, hair ribbons, walking stick, gloves, pony, canoe…maybe a football in honor of the fact that this year Groundhog Day and Super Bowl Sunday are one and the same! 🙂

High-Tech Option:  You can do it by photoshop or MS Paint if you’re handy like that.  (Feel free to help yourself to the Phyllis heads or Phyllis figure below so at least that part is done for you, or use the Phyllis action figure HERE.)

Mid-Tech Option:  You can use Face In Hole.com or similar

Low-Tech Option:  You can print out one of the Phyllis heads or the whole Phyllis figure supplied below and draw, paint, sew, or make paper clothes to stick on.  Or cut something out of a magazine.  Or make her an outfit out of feathers 🙂  Or raisins 🙂  Or whatever 🙂 (Or again, use the Phyllis action figure HERE.)

(And if the ones I post below don’t work properly, just email me and I’ll send you the files!)

Then post a photo (or your photo shop version) of your dressed up Phyllis on your blog along with your prediction: 6 more weeks of winter, or early spring???  (Or email it to me and I’ll post it here if you don’t have a blog but would like to join the fun.)

The outfit does not have to match your prediction.  After all, if Phyllis decides there will be 6 more weeks of winter, she might hightail it for sunny Cancun in a polka-dot bikini 🙂

(If you would like to also help Phyllis in her quest to stay in print, she would be most appreciative of a link to her page at your local indie, Amazon, B&N, or wherever you feel like.)

Anyhoo, post your Phyllis Fashionista on your blog (or email it to me for posting here) anytime between now and Saturday February 1 at 5 PM EST and add your post-specific link to the link list below so we can all come see how gorgeous she looks!  Feel free to post more than one if you’re having fun 🙂

On Sunday February 2 – GROUNDHOG DAY! – I will post all the photos here in a special post – the complete fashion show! – and we’ll let everyone vote for winners 🙂

Doesn’t that sound like fun???  I totally can’t wait to see what we all come up with!!! 🙂  I think we’re going to be taking the cat walk to hitherto unprecedented levels.  Look out, Gisele, Tyra, Heidi!  You’ve got nothing on Phyllis!  Short, stout, furry, and dressed to the nines, you’re about to see how a groundhog struts her stuff 🙂

Here are the heads and figure for your convenience: (with many thanks to my daughter who did this on photoshop since I am clueless!)

you can color this one in if you like…

or there’s this one that’s already colored…

you can cover what she’s wearing here with whatever you choose for her 🙂

And prizes.  Hmm… prizes…

If we get 12 or fewer entries, 1 prize shall be awarded and it shall be the winner’s choice of a signed hard cover copy of Punxsutawney Phyllis (if by some chance you don’t already have one :)) or an unsigned (but still free!) hard cover copy of Gretchen Groundhog It’s Your Day, or your choice of two of the following because they’re all only available in paperback: Go To Sleep, Groundhog by Judy Cox, Substitute Groundhog by Pat Miller or Mr. Groundhog Wants The Day Off by Pat Vojta or Ten Grouchy Groundhogs by Kathryn Heling, any of which shall be purchased from Merritt Bookstore.  If you should happen to want something besides Groundhog Day picture books (which Phyllis is unable to fathom, but no accounting for taste :)) you may alternatively select any book of your choice up to a price of $17.95 to be shipped to you from Merritt.

If we get more than 12 entries, we will award 1st – 3rd and all winners can pick from the choices listed above.

Golly!  I’m excited!

Phyllis is jumping up and down!

We are having so much fun we’ve forgotten the dark and the cold and the still faraway whisper of spring!

So come join us!!!

Have a marvelous (and warm!) Monday everyone! 🙂

And whenever you have a Phyllis Fashionista, add your post-specific link to the list below!

And LOOK!  Here’s our first one from Linda who says EARLY SPRING!!!

by Linda Boyden

And here is our next one!

Olympic Phyllis by Katie Hill

And another!!

Spring Phyllis by Grace age 8!

And two from Sue!

Phyllis makes a prediction (after looking at the world’s upside) by Sue Heavenrich

Phyllis modeling her 6 more weeks of Ski Season togs by Sue Heavenrich
Sunday Best Phyllis by Heather Greene