Party time!

REMINDER: Party on, dudes. There’s too much cake left to quit now. I thought that Ruth took her gin with her but just now found in on the table beside Ken’s Couch Potato Salad. Matt, if you get my shirt wet one more time . . .

Hi everyone,
Today’s the day. I welcome one and all to join the fun by making your presence known so that others can greet you. Besides, if you brought brownies or other favorites, you’re sort of duty bound to speak up.
If you haven’t been to my back yard before, take your time to look around. The lake at the foot of the yard has no official name that I know of, but I call it Goose Lake. You can take the steps down to the water for a closer look. If you walk quietly, you’ll probably scare a dozen or more turtles off the rocks along the base of the wall. If you’re quicker than I am, maybe you can get a picture before they splash into the water en masse.
The grill has gas in it if anyone wants to flip burgers or some other delicacy. The lounges are getting old and we’re going to replace them this summer but they still make a perfect place for naps.

Our pool isn’t large but it offers a great way to relax.20150628_124933 It’s only four feet deep so I just walk around in it and sip on whatever I find in my hand.

You’ll find benches here and there plus five tables with chairs. We have three hackberry trees, two maples, and a cherry so you’ll find shade when you need it.

We have plenty of coolers, the fridge is available in the kitchen. Come and go as you like. If you forgot your swimsuit, you can just zip home and get it.

I’m glad you came. Welcome!


178 comments on “Party time!

  1. Hi, Dave and Sandy, I just wanted you to know I’m on my way to the party. It is 7:30 PM on Thursday here in Kauai. I’ll be there in time to celebrate King Kamehameha Day. See you soon.

      • I’m sorry I did not see this email until today. I don’t know what to do, but I wanted to say hi.

      • You don’t need to do anything, dear esteemed friend of mine. You honor me by coming by.

    • I’m on my way, too, though I still need to feed the cats before I go. I was thinking of bringing Gin. Any objections? I know you shouldn’t drink and swim, but it’s summer, and maybe one G&T wouldn’t hurt?

      • Gin? Let’s put it to a vote? Okay, it’s unanimous. Bring it on. Glad you’re joining us, friend! You’ve been here before, Ruth, so I don’t need to show you around.

  2. OK, I have a question for folks. Does anyone know more about a children’s illustrator Eulalie Banks? (More than what is on wiki) She lived to be 104. I thought some of you older folks might have run into her.

  3. It’s a beautiful day and place for a party. Thank you for the invitation! I’ll come back after the sun warms the water for a walk in the pool. Sundown is a good time for pool walking.

  4. Oh my goodness – I looked up Eulalie B. I’d seen & admired her illustrations, but hadn’t known of the lady herself & I’m glad to know more about her. Her work calls to mind Margaret Tarrant’s & that of Cicely Mary “Flower Fairy” Barker. Makes me want to get out my paints. I’ll bring ’em, my pencil & sketch book, maybe the turtles will pose for me & won’t mind if the fairies come out to play…

    • If those turtles will pose for anyone, dear Cheryl, it will be for you. They certainly won’t do it for me!

  5. Good morning everyone. Thanks for the invitation to your lovely place, David. I can’t stay long. It’s my final day at the beach and I want to be out there as much as possible! But, here’s a pitcher of mimosas to start the day! I looked up Eulalie, too, Joy. There are many of her books on e-bay. I do not know of her. She has a book titled The Brimful Book, and I have one illustrated by Tasha Tudor-interesting!

    • Hi Linda! I’m impressed you could leave the beach even long enough to stop by! I don’t know when you found time to make the mimosas but thank you! This will help get the party off on a good start. Don Barrett is making waffles so help yourself before you go back to the beach.

      • Thank you! I’ll have some of Don’s waffles and be on my way! Here are a few lines from the shore: “morning waves splash/sanderlings trot in and out/foamy breakfast”. Have a lovely party!

      • Take some back to the beach, Linda. And don’t forget to try Pat’s apple dumplings! I love your lines, especially “foamy breakfast.”

  6. Glad to drop in on your virtual party, David. Your blog is always the place to be . . .
    entertained and edified with toothsome delicacies. I humbly offer a panful of my
    mother’s apple dumplings to sweeten the feast. And I wish all of your guests a
    joyous reunion in verse.

    • Pat! How good to see you again! Your mom’s apple dumplings are wonderful and I’m grateful that you brought some to share. Please make yourself at home. A number of others are looking in from the sidelines and I hope to coax them to join us soon.

  7. Thanks for hosting again, David…you really know how to throw a party! I brought marshmallows (and Grand Marnier, and Rumplemintz, of course) for toasting, and have plenty of Moxie, if anyone else cares to partake. (Moxie, if you don’t know, is the Elixir of the Gods)

    Best wishes to all, and I look forward to seeing who else shows up! The only thing left to say is….CANNONBAAAAALLLLLLL!

    • Matt, you are forgiven for splashing water on my apple dumplings, but only because of those killer treats you brought! My thanks again to you and Joy Acey for suggesting the original party last June. Joy’s here, too, or soon will be. Don’t miss her. She’ll be decked out in her Hawaiian outfit.

    • Hey Matt, did you bring one of your old journals? I’d love a quick peek inside. Now you know why girls want locks for their diaries. I hope you didn’t get your journal wet with your cannonball.

      • Journals are safe and sound, locked in a hermetically-sealed safe, underground, where no one but Yours Truly can get to them. I hope you’re hungry, because I decided to bring some wild berry shortcake!

  8. Wow! I was worried I would show up too early this morning, but see that the party is already swinging right along! If you don’t mind, I think I’ll wander around Goose Lake before it gets too warm, and see if I can get some pretty pics as the world wakes up. Once it gets hot, I think I’ll grab a chair under a tree! Oh – can Danny bring a fishing pole? (Don’t worry – he usually doesn’t catch much, but he sure has fun trying!) Morning, dear Cheryl!! Glad to see you came to the party!

    • Susan’s here! Okay, now we can party! Hey Danny. You can walk down to the water and fish from the landing. I don’t know what you like but there are bass in there and a variety of other kinds. What I wish you would do is catch some of those enormous grass carp. They are three feet long and I fear they are crowding out the native species.

    • Oh – and I brought a great pasta/veggie salad for lunch! Marie Smith shared the recipe on FB a few weeks ago, and I adapted it a bit for my family. They like it, so I thought I’d share! Brownies are coming too, but only if everyone takes a turn with the ice cream crank! C’mon – brownies and homemade vanilla ice cream will hit the spot about 3:00 when the sun is hot!

      • Wow! Susan, I’m going to get another table out to hold all this food. I’ll put it over by the grill. And thanks again for all this yummy food. Brownies? Sorry, Danny, but I just fell in love with your wife.

    • Ha ha! Donna we can’t ever have too much ice! Especially when Ruth Culham over there by the pool is toting a bottle of gin. I’m sure she’ll share if you offer ice. Had such fun with you and Karen in Houston. Is Karen here yet? Haven’t seen her yet.

    • LOL! Ice is good, especially if we make homemade ice cream! We might need a lot! (and some rock salt, too!)

      • Rock salt? I have a bag in the garage. Maybe this is the summer I’ll finally get around to making ice cream. I love the stuff!

  9. I wanted to arrive early to see everyone! I hope many bring some of their books, because I plan on spending the day lounging by the lake, basking in the sun and their pages. I might pen a few of my own while I’m at it. Oh, and I brought some guacamole, because what party couldn’t use guacamole?

    • Good morning, Dona! I’m so glad you made it in from California. Long haul, isn’t it? Guacamole? Whoa! This party is now official! So find a quiet spot and make yourself at home. There’s a lounge chair under the hackberry that’s perfect for whiling away a day. Better grab it!

  10. Sitting in the Charlotte airport midway through a trip to Honesdale. Meant to get that tray of 90 pieces of baklava in the mail….next time! Have a sunny poolside day!

    • Hello, dear heart! I hope your plane isn’t delayed. I know you’ll have a great time in Honesdale. I look forward to being there in August. And remember, you owe us baklava next time! XO

      • David, how is the registration going for your fabulous workshop? Who are your guests this year? I wish I could be there, but I’ll be in Australia then. Is Sandy ever going to make it there?

      • Registrations have been slow, Joy. But another signed up last week and there’s still time for others to join us. Jeanne is returning so I’m very glad about that. Charles Waters has signed on so I look forward to learning from him about how to present a poem. I’d like to see another half a dozen join the group.

  11. Hi, Everyone! I’m here, and I’m already walking down to the edge of the pond to check out all the turtles David says are down there. I brought quinoa salad, because I just got back from Ecuador where quinoa grows like crazy and is super cheap. The plants are gorgeous—who knew? I can’t stay long, alas, but I hope you all have a fantastic pahty! All best, Karen Boss (one of David’s MOEs)

    • Karen! I’m so happy you could make it! Is “pahty” a typo or are you being a pahty-mouth? I’m dying to hear about your Ecuador experience. You must talk Donna into sending us somewhere else soon! And thanks for the salad. I’m loving this!

      • Pahty is how we spell it with a Boston accent! 🙂 Ecuador was amazing, but possibly not as amazing as your backyard!

      • Wow! I get to party with THE Karen Boss and improve my education at the same time. My cup runneth over!

  12. Just thought of one more things I’m bringing – nice cold deviled eggs! Our 35 chickens are laying like crazy right now, and I need to use some eggs up! Anybody want me to bring them a dozen fresh eggs? Maybe you’ll need a few dozen to serve breakfast in the morning, David, for all the guests who stay the night? Ha!

    • You DO have neat ideas, my friend! I adore deviled eggs so bring ’em on. Maybe we can put an egg or two in the ice cream. Does that work? And don’t forget that Don Barrett is making waffles so we can have a great breakfast!

  13. Hi, David, Sandy, and all! Wrapped up visiting the grandkids just in time to head on over. On the way, we made our traditional stop at The Shoppes at Premise Maid for ice cream — Motto: “Money can’t buy happiness, but it can buy chocolate, which is pretty much the same thing” — and I had them fill a tub to bring as my contribution. What flavor, you ask? Well, as befits a virtual party, this is a magical tub — dig in and it’s the flavor of your dreams, be it Raspberry Cordial or Peanut Butter Cup or whatever. My personal favorite: Triple Chocolate Sin.

    • Which, of course, makes you a magical guest, Sandy! Which, of course, I already knew. Thank you for coming. Did you bring Harvey? Sandy is around here somewhere this morning. I’ll tell her you’re here. XO

  14. Hi, (wasn’t quite sure how this works.) Anyhow. We may want to include Maurice Sendak to the party. Today would have been his 88th birthday. He was a great friend and genius. Remember our philosophical walks in the woods….

    • Greetings, Hans! So glad you made it. I’m drinking my coffee from the mug with your wondrous pigs on it. They bring a smile to my morning. Maurice would certainly make a fine guest. Thank you for remembering him. So make yourself at home.

    • Hello, Mr. Wilhelm! I’m so glad I get to “meet” you at David’s party! You did something really nice for one of my students many years ago, and now I can thank you “in person” for your kindness! Here – let me get you a brownie! LOL!

      • Mr. Wilhelm – you posted some of your fun dinosaur books online and told teachers to use them. At that time, I taught a young man with autism, and he ADORED dinosaurs! I shared your books with him, and sent you an email, which you answered. He was THRILLED – to read the books, and to hear from you!! This took place about 10 years ago (maybe more!).

  15. Oh golly–see what happens when you are working on a novel. Times flies. (I can’t they fly too fast!)

    Here’s my contribution–the largest dark dark chocolate bar in the world. Enough for everyone here. That’s cause I am a MAJOR chocoloholic and I expect everyone else is, too.

    S I am setting up the bar (of chocolate) and spinning some tall tales about Harrison. Even Sandy won’t recognize him when I am through.

    • Oh-oh! Here’s Jane and she’s sounding wicked with chocolate dripping from her tongue and tall tales to follow. I’ll warn Sandy not to believe a word you say! But I definitely thank you for the cake. If there is such a thing as too much chocolate, I’ve yet to experience it. XO

      • Chocolate BAR mega size, big enough to serve as a bar. Use your good words-meter,
        David. Comes from drinking all that whacky stuff up in the mountains.


      • And the Jane gifts keep coming! I just walked into the kitchen for coffee and glanced out the window, half expecting to see a crowd of people out there. And indeed they are. Isn’t the mind a wonderful place in which to congregate?

  16. Aloha, David. Aloha, Sandy. I brought purple orchid leis with me-the flower of Kauai. (Touches foreheads ). Don’t the petals feel cool against you neck? Today is King Kamehameha Day, to honor the last king who unified the islands. Lots of places on Kauai are closed today and there is a big parade and lots of flowers. I also brought some pineapples and watermelons. What can I say, they were on sale at Walmart. Do you have a knife I can use to cut them up? Where would you like me to put them? Pineapple on waffles tastes great.

    • My gosh, Joy, how did you carry all this? Oh, I forgot for a moment. Of course you can. So thank you for the gorgeous flowers. We dearly love orchids and have three plants in our kitchen. Not long ago I used Kamehameha in a poem. You don’t see that every day!
      We survived it all, my children,
      a proud people with proud heritage,
      eight big islands of us,
      more than one hundred others,
      brought together by King Kamehameha.
      If you can pronounce that, my dears,
      I’ll call you my little Hawaiians.
      And thanks for the wonderful pineapples and watermelon. I’ll never make it to noon if I don’t stop eating everything in sight!

    • Good morning, Teresa. I’m happy that you’ve joined us. And as I’ve always said, those with chocolate cupcakes have already said it all! Go look at the birds. We have all kinds.

  17. Good morning from Seattle! I think I will set up shop by the pool. I grew up in St. Louis and miss my pool days. I have got gooey butter cake….a favorite for desserts at parties! I am crashing the party with an invite from Jeff. We fight all those pesky things like dunes and four houses built on slopes in Cannon Beach…which by the way it’s sand castle weekend out there and that is a party!

    • Hi Mindy! I’m glad to meet you. Jeff said he hoped you would come today. Many thanks for bringing the gooey butter cake. It’s delicious! I don’t know whether to hide till later or share it. Oh well, it’s a party so we’ll put it here on the table. Jeff has kept us posted about the struggles in Canon Beach these days. Sort of keeps you busy! Keep up the good fight!

  18. Happy Friday! What a lovely day for a party! I will head over as soon as I get out of the office today. What a wonderful group of people visiting here! I am so happy to be included with some of my favorite authors and illustrators! I am at Drury University solving problems and helping students navigate their way into their future classrooms. Great to spend just a little time with you. Will check in again later.

    • Hi Laurie! Thanks for checking in. I look forward to seeing you later. We’re off and running so solve those problems and get on over!

  19. Love your surroundings, David. Thanks for inviting the world. 🙂 I so miss seeing you in Warrensburg. Miss seeing everyone in Warrensburg. But I’m delighted to spend a bit of time with you now.

    • Hi Marsha! Everyone, it’s Marsha Arnold! I miss seeing you, too. Surely our paths will cross again one of these days, but until then we can get together like this and count ourselves fortunate to have such technology. Welcome!

    • Oh my gosh! It’s Sylvia Vardell! I’m glad you made it. I know you must still be recovering from jet lag from your trip. Thanks for the Texas watermelon and the fun poem by Tricia. If Tricia makes it to the party, I’ll thank her in person. Make yourself at home. I don’t think that Janet Wong has made it yet but she’s busy today and said she might not be able to squeeze it in.

    • Sylvia, oh I’m so glad ran into you here. Do you know if Janet Wong will be dropping by later? I’m so excited about the Poetry Camp at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington on Oct. 1. Will it be cold that time of year in Washington? Do you have any idea how many people they are planning on? I saw Ken Slesarick around here someplace, I’m sure he’s going to be glad to see you too.

  20. Hi David, and thank you for the invitation. I love your back yard so much. I would never leave. In fact, in my condition, I think I will plunk myself down on one of your old lawn chairs in the shade and watch the birds with my friend Teresa. If you stop by, I will share my pitcher of homemade lemonade and a giggle or two.

    Here’s a little summer ditty I wrote a while back in response to a Nikki Grimes challenge. Enjoy the day!


    Lemon is a sunny yellow word.
    It speaks of summer,
    days sliced thin and swirled
    with sugar nights.
    I halve one,
    a stinging spray,
    raise the rind to my lips
    for a sour-pucker kiss,
    my hands perfumed with happiness.

    © 2015 Renée M. LaTulippe

    • Renee, my friend! And all the way from Italy in your condition. I am SO impressed. By all means find a comfy spot to take it easy. You’ve earned it! Thanks so much for the lemonade and the delightful poem. Raising the rind for a sour-pucker kiss is very cool, not to mention those hands perfumed with happiness. Stay as long as you like, unless you start feeling something, if you know what I mean.

  21. Hi David and Sandy, I brought a couch potato salad and a record player but I forgot my vinyl records. Maybe Matt or Joy have some 45’s or LP’s in their cars? Great to be here!

    • There used to be one, several years ago. I’m not sure now, but I think you can check with the reference desk at Springfield-Greene County Library District. They have records that might include this information.

  22. Hello David, and thank you for such a gracious invitation. I am bringing my favorite guacamole recipe, along with chips and a cooler of cold brews. And then I’m going to swan around among all the poetic stars, hoping to make some new friends and glean the latest news as I offer up chips & dip. Of course I’ll take some quiet moments near the lake. Watching nature is my favorite pastime. And I’m sure there will be some laughs. I’m always ready for a good laugh… I just hope I don’t get any bubbles up my nose…

    • Greetings, Karen! It’s good to see you again. I’ll lighten that load of beers, thank you very much. And maybe a chip or two of that guacamole. Yes! So stroll about and see what’s what. I’ve been too busy to introduce folks properly so I’ll get to that directly.

  23. Oh dear, I forgot to clean the kitchen, David, Oh well, it’s more fun to visit than clean. We’ll just have the beer and guacamole.

  24. Whew! I’m finally catching my breath. More folks will show up any minute but while I have time I’d like to make a few introductions.

    Joy Acey came to my first Honesdale workshop and our friendship has grown over the years. Joy lives, breathes, and writes poetry. I’ll miss her this year but she and her hubby will be on a European trip.

    Ruth Culham and I were on the same program at a conference some years ago and have kept up with one another ever since. She has been here and we get together when I’m in Portland. Ruth is the nation’s foremost authority on the traits of writing. Her latest hit is THE WRITING THIEF.

    Rosi Hollinbeck is coming to my workshop this year and I look forward to becoming better acquainted. Next time I’ll be able to introduce her more fully.

    I’ve known Joyce Ragland for a long time. She is the author of more than one hundred academic publications and has been editor or reviewer of publications by Prentice-Hall, McGraw-Hill, and Wiley plus too many other endeavors to mention.

  25. Cheryl Harness is an author, a poet, an artist, a sculpture, a speaker, a wit, and all around good buddy. Kids can’t get enough of her.

    Linda Baie and I have met both at workshops and conferences. She’s a teacher, writer, and lifelong learner. At the moment she has her toes in the water at the beach.

    J. Patrick Lewis writes a little poetry. Anyone heard of him? He’s a former college professor, past U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate, a prolific poet and anthologist, and knows a lot of very large words.

    Matt Forrest I met at one of my workshops and have continued to follow through correspondence. He’s another person of many talents including voice overs and writing poems that are finding their way into a growing number of anthologies. This whole party idea came from Matt and Joy Acey.

  26. Susan Hutchens has won high honors for her outstanding work as a teacher. If anyone can turn kids on to poetry, she’s the one. Recent past president of Colorado Reading Association, she ran one of the best conferences I’ve ever attended. And she a great friend!

    Donna Spurlock is Director of Marketing at Charlesbridge Publishing and delightful company. I got to meet her at TLA in Houston. My new book, NOW YOU SEEM THEM, NOW YOU DON’T is in excellent hands with Donna looking out for it.

    Dona Rice is Director of Special Projects for Shell Education. We met at a conference where I was speaking and later, over coffee, we agreed that I should do something for Shell. My sixth book with them, RHYMES FOR THE TIMES, LITERACY STRATAGIES THROUGH SOCIAL STUDIES, was released this January.

    Mary Jo Fresch is Professor Emeritus of the Department of Teaching and Learning at Ohio State University and she and I wrote five of those six books I just mentioned. We’re working on a new book now; just waiting on an editor to respond. (:>

  27. Karen Boss is my marvelous editor at Charlesbridge. She cracks a mean whip and gets the best out of you. No sooner was NOW YOU SEE THEM out the door than we began work on a new collection of my poems, which will also be illustrated by the talented artist, Giles Laroche.

    Sandy Asher broke my heart when she and husband Harvey left Springfield for Lancaster, Pennsylvania. Sandy and I have been close friends for decades
    and writing partners on several projects, including the Writers at Work series on my blog. Sandy is a children’s author with wide range and one of the most gifted playwrights in America.

    Hans Wilhelm and I have done two books together and keep saying we’ll do another. The first one, WAKE UP SUN! has sold 1.150 million copies since 1986 and was just reprinted for the 70th time. Hans is popular world-wide and both writes and illustrates.

    Jane Yolen writes fantastic books with both hands at the same time in her sleep. She’s even faster and better during the daytime. We also go back several years and I love working with her. Between Hans and Jane, they’ve written most of the books in the world.

    • Thank you for the mention, David, even with the heartbreak. Honestly, though, I think we’ve collaborated almost as much since the move as we did when my house was around the corner from your office. Just as I promised we would! Let’s hear it for email!

      • Yes, my dear friend, we have indeed marched right on together from afar. And may it always be so.

  28. Laurie Edmondson is Dean of the School of Education and Child Development at Drury University. As the school’s poet laureate I meet with Laurie on a regular basis and we co-authored the book with accompanying CDs called LET’S WRITE THIS WEEK WITH DAVID HARRISON.

    Marsha Diane Arnold is a talented and prolific author and another old friend. One of Marsha’s books, ROAR OF A SNORE, has been selected three times for the list of Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.

    Sylvia Vardell is a professor of library and information studies at Texas Woman’s College. She is widely acknowledged as one of our nation’s foremost spokespersons for children’s poetry and speaks and writes about it extensively. She and Janet Wong formed Pomelo books to publish anthologies of children’s poetry.

    Renee LaTulippe is incubating a child at the moment, but she happens to be a delightful and delightfully talented poet, writing coach, actress, and producer of wonderful videos, which she collects on her site, NO WATER RIVER. I love working with Renee, but then who doesn’t?

  29. Party! Party! Party! It’s Friday right? So a little early celebration is in order. I’m biking over with my camera (always!) and some easy-bake goodies. (They are easy-bake because I let Price-Cutter bake them! Ha.)

    Can’t stay long – My virtual video garden needs work – but I will pop in again later.

    Thanks for hosting the first big party of the season.

    • There you are, Sony! Thanks for dropping by and please come back. The party is just getting started and we need your good eye with the camera to capture this one for posterity. I can’t wait to sample your easy-bake goodies! Hmm, did that sound wrong? That’s enough beer for me.

  30. Hi David! Thanks for inviting me to your party. Looks like it’s already a rager. Beautiful place you’ve got here. I brought these Kansas City BBQ ribs and a two-buck Chuck. I’ll do my best not to spill on your couch. I apologize in advance if you find me dancing with a lampshade on my head.

    • Kenn, hi! I’ve been hoping you’d make it today. I even set aside a lampshade for you. It’s almost trashed anyway so have at it. Besides, when you bring Kansas City ribs, you can wreck the house and I’m still ahead of the game.

  31. Ken Slesarik makes Arizona proud with his special talent for working with young students and engaging them in language development through poetry combined with his own wit and talent for finding unexpected rhymes. He’s a published poet and is in growing demand to do school visits. I met Ken when he attended my first workshop at Honesdale.

    Karen Eastlund is another former participant in my workshops and we, too, have remained in touch through FB and my Word of the Month Poetry Challenge.

    Marilyn Singer couldn’t stick around today but you may well know her through her poetry. She’s one of the finest poets in the business. She and her husband are avid dancers so maybe she’ll wind up on Dancing with the Stars!

    If I have failed to introduce someone, forgive me for not knowing you well enough yet. I hope you’ll come to my recue by posting your own introduction.

  32. Wow, this place is crowded! Where am I going to put these smoked razor clams?? They are fresh…I just caught them a couple of days ago at the coast in Gearhart, Oregon, so I thought I’d share! I smoked them for 2 hours using hickory chips. Want me to make a dip? If anyone brought any cream cheese, I’ll get started!

    • Hey, that’s my boy! Welcome, Jeff. You’d be welcome even without those — uh, excuse my reach — those, uh — wow! — clams. But this way you can stay longer! Your dear sainted mother has some cream cheese in the fridge. It has probably been there since the last time you were home. That stuff on top scrapes right off.

  33. Listen everyone. Sorry to yell but I need your attention. My grandson has friends in town from Norway and we’ve promised to take the boys out to dinner. I won’t be gone long but I didn’t want you to think I was ignoring you. As you know, there’s plenty to eat and drink and I expect more guests to arrive during the rest of the afternoon and evening. Please go on enjoying yourselves.

    Joy, can you and Matt keep an eye on things until I get back? You know where everything is. Thanks!

    It’s a fine party, everyone. Thank you for coming. Don’t go away. I’ll be back!

      • I don’t know but need to ask more questions. Our grandson visited them two year ago and now they’ve come to see the United States. They’re both great young men and we are enjoying having them here.

  34. Today I visit you all for a day of fun!
    Whether swimming or fishing, we’ll soak up the sun!
    I’ve slathered on sunscreen and am in my sun hat.
    I’ve a book in my hand! What do ya think about that?

  35. When David throws a party
    Everyone’s a witty smartie
    Bearing gifts and drinks galore.
    Every year there’s more and more.

    Only problem is–can’t see ’em,
    Can’t give hugs, can’t really be ’em,
    Only avatars of poets,
    Here and gone before you know it’s

    Someone you would like to meet.
    (Bringing something good to eat.)

    xxxJane Y

  36. Enjoy your grandson and his friends! Mine are off to their apartment in Jupiter!
    It’s cocktail time in Virginia and when I leave the party I will toast you and Sandywith a chilled glass of Pinot Grigio.

    • Hi Laura! I so wanted to meet you when you came to CCIRA in February – but the day you were presenting, I was snowed in at my house in the mountains! Will you be in Boston for ILA? Hope so!

  37. Ok I’ll corner a few of you with my lemon squares and mint sprigs for the cocktails and tell you I just wrote an entire blog post on “somebody’s” picnic party posting and it disappeared. Ugh. So I hear lots of chatting about poetry. My favorite kind of talk. I’ve brought anthologies and laid them out on tables. Everyone pick a favorite poem and maybe read it by the lake tonight. Must go now but will check in later to see if anyone is still around.

    • Sorry you lost your post. It’s maddening! But you made it and I’m glad! And you’ve come prepared to party. Let’s do it!

  38. I’ve been working on a new novel all day–the 2nd of a 2-book deal. I want to finish it (or at least get a solid start) before the contract actually comes in because I figure nothing will cause my brain to freeze up faster than having a deadline. (Unlike some of you, I don’t write on spec, but send in a manuscript after it’s finished.)

    Stopping now for dinner, and after dinner off to Barnes & Noble, which is having a national Teen Book Fest this weekend. Friday, Saturday, Sunday: I’m doing signings at 3 of the B&N’s in Rochester, NY.

    All by way of explaining why I haven’t had time to prepare anything for David’s party, and all I’m bringing is a bag of Cheeze Doodles. Kindly ignore the orange powder on my hands… But it’s good to see all of you.

    Vivian Vande Velde

    • Hi Vivian! I think your fingers are kind of cute that color. Sounds like a super busy day. Thank you for taking a break to come by. You know a lot of peeps.

  39. I don’t post enough to know that it wouldn’t include my name. This is Rebecca. David I hope your dinner is delightful! Useful information: Scribbles in Peacock is because when I was in Junior High we used the pens with ink cartridges and “peacock” was my favorite!! Long live turquoise. Is everyone using the mint for their cocktails?

    • Joy, I tried to make up a poem while I was driving to Branson and back but the traffic was fierce and I decided to focus on not getting killed.

  40. Hello Joy, I knew I’d run into you. I couldn’t come up with a party poem but here is the recipe for the couch potato salad I brought.

    Couch Potato Salad Recipe
    Ken Slesarik

    Mix 1 cup mayo that loves to lounge
    with 3, diced, idle eggs hard boiled.
    Add slothful onions and vinegar,
    potatoes lazy, cubed and broiled.
    Serve chilled with garnish if desired
    in the comfort of cable TV.
    I’m really tired, please make some now
    and save the extra for me!

    • Thanks, Ken. I’m definitely going to try that recipe. Or maybe my M.O.W. will make it for me to save me from getting up.

  41. Sorry, David! Danny and I went to town this afternoon and just got home from running errands. I sure wish I could bring the two darling baby antelope fawns that are cavorting around in the pasture near our home right now! They are precious!

    Speaking of critters, since I’m going to zoom right back to your place, I’m wondering if I need to bring a jar for lightning bugs?! Do you have many around your place? I sure miss them, as they are few and far between here in Colorado! (don’t worry – I’ll let them go when the festivities taper down later this evening. Well…IF the festivities taper down! Ha!)

    • Susan, I saw the pictures you posted. They are almost terminally cute for sure. By all means I hope you brought a bug jar. We’ve had a lawn full of lightning bugs for the past week so all of you who are still around this evening are in for a light show.

  42. Hi, David – sorry I’m late. Had a bit of trouble finding my way to your home. Love the lake view! I really appreciate the invitation and the chance to visit with everybody and enjoy the cooler than St. Louis weather. Oh, here – I brought some guacamole.

    • Hi Connie! I’m so happy you made it. Sorry I wasn’t here at the door to greet you. We’re all still in the yard. It’s 81 degrees with a light breeze so it’s perfect for the homemade ice cream with Joy’s pineapple in it. Thanks for the delicious dip. I didn’t think I was still hungry but I dug right in!

  43. It’s an hour to midnight up here, David. Sorry about arriving so late. I just left a retirement party but I thought I might pop in for a coffee or an ice cream or both before calling it a night. It seems like you had quite the party with so many friends in attendance. I brought half an orange chiffon cake. Someone made off with the other half when I wasn’t looking. Sorry.
    Are Joy, Matt, Linda B, Kenn and Renee still partying or have then gone home to bed?

    • Oh my gosh, Cory, I’d all but given up! I’m delighted that you made it. Thanks for making the trip so close to your bedtime. I know Matt’s still going strong because he just now posted a poem and cannon-balled into the pool. Don’t know about the others. I haven’t seen them in a while but it’s dark so they could be relaxing somewhere. Or chasing fireflies. And thanks for the cake. It makes a perfect late night snack!

    • I’m still here. I’m still on Hawaii Pacific time–it’s only six pm at home. I’m glad to see you and I’ll enjoy some of your cake. I put a snail mail letter in the mail to you today.

      • Joy, I’m aware that four of the eight poets in my first workshop in 2011 are here today: you, Cory, Ken, and Jeanne (on FB). I want you to know how much that means to me. Remember when the cooks told us that we laughed more than any other group they’d ever had? And here we are, five years later, still laughing and enjoying one another’s company. Matt and several others are here, too, from the workshops that have followed. My thanks to each of you. I’m honored that you came.

  44. I see everyone else has gone home. It is after midnight for you. I’ll just help clean up and get out of here. Thanks for another great party, David and Sandy.

    • Joy, you’re the best. Ma and Pa are grateful. But don’t forget that virtual food has a remarkable shelf life.

      Night, night,

      • I know! I know! That’s why I pigged out all day yesterday on Yolen’s cake and chocolate bar and all the other delectables that came pouring in!

  45. Are we heading into Day #2? Looks like there’s a lot of food still, and there’s always time to make more ice cream!

    I sure loved hearing the birds singing me awake this morning! Did I hear a cardinal or two? None of them in this part of the country, and I love to whistle back and forth with them!

    • Good morning, Susan! Glad you slept well and enjoyed our cardinals singing, “pretty pretty pretty.” They’re so vain. I’m expecting others to start showing up presently. I mean, who wants to let homemade ice cream go to waste at any time of day!

  46. Wake up everybody! Susan is making ice cream. Can you believe it? I didn’t finish my introductions. Here are some others who made it to the party later in the day.

    Sony Hocklander is a journalist/photographer/videographer who retired not long ago from Springfield News-Leader where she had been a mainstay for a number of years. She is now engaged in starting her own company using her talents for creating videos. She can tell you what else she has added to her menu of services.

    Jeff Harrison, my son, lives in Portland with our daughter-in-law Jennifer. She teaches 4th grade and Jeff is a computer consultant. We’ll be with them at the end of this month and I can’t wait. By the way, you’ve seen many of Jeff’s photographs on my blog and/or his. The guy’s good.

    Kenn Nesbitt is a former U.S. Children’s Poet Laureate and has written many, many books of funny poems for kids. His website is wildly popular and he travels extensively spreading the gospel of poetry. Way to go, Kenn!

    Julie Bryant is associate professor of education at Southwest Baptist University and former co-editor of Missouri Reading Journal. Turns out she can also write poetry!

    Rebecca Dotlich has published many successful books for children including several of poetry. She and Georgia Heard are presenting a poetry workshop at The Barn in September. Her e-mail “handle” is Scribbles in Peacock, in case you didn’t spot her in the crowd yesterday.

  47. Vivian Vande Velde is another longtime friend and fellow participant in the annual Children’s Literature Festival in Warrensburg, Missouri. If you check her books on Amazon, you’ll probably recognize some of her titles. She’s a terrific writer and another one who never stops working.

    Constance Levy is a wonderful poet from St. Louis. Her fans wish she would publish more but I never tire of rereading her work. There’s one about a sandwich stealing seagull that makes me smile every time. She and I have discussed doing something together one of these days. You never know.

    Canadian Cory Corrado came to my first poetry workshop in 2011 and is another poet with whom I enjoy staying in touch. Her loving eye for nature and talent for finding beauty around her are outstanding qualities in a poet. I look forward to seeing more of her work.

    Who have I left out? Don’t let me do that!

  48. I’m heading to town to get some more ice cream supplies!! When I was a kid, the neighbors used to get together on the weekends and make several kinds of ice cream. I’m remembering one made with Orange Crush soda, and it sounds good for today! Ha! Be back soon!

  49. Came back to say goodbye. What a beautiful backyard, porch and pool you have by the lake, David. So peaceful. I’m still full 😉 and ready to get on with the day. A revision and a few grandkids of my own stopping by in a bit. Sure enjoyed seeing everyone!!

  50. Sorry I couldn’t make the party this year David but thought it would be a bit disloyal to fly over there and miss the Queen’s 90th birthday. Would have loved to have plunged into the lovely Goose Lake. I’ll try harder next year

  51. I made some hot fudge for the ice cream, but ate it all before I got back. Sorry you couldn’t enjoy any, but if it’s any consolation, it was delicious.

    It’s been a busy day, so I can’t stay…but just wanted to thank our host for a wonderful time! Hope you have a great rest of the weekend, David!

  52. Just wanted to thank Joy for her congratulations! (The title is One Day, The End.) In the pipeline is a picture book mss I’m revising that is about a relationship between a young boy and his dad and then a fun rhyming transportation type pic bk still revising, and working on a few collections of poems! Thanks for asking Joy. Now I’m off to swim w the grandkids today. And eat more snacks. 😉

  53. Thanks for the invite to the great party, David! You and Sandy are such great hosts! I need to head home now, though, and get the house ship-shape before friends from Indiana arrive soon. Or take a nap. Ha! Until next time!

    • Susan, it was such a pleasure to host so many wonderful guests! Thank you and Danny for coming and for your tasty treats and congenial conversations. Good luck with your company. I know they’ll love being with you.

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