Posted in Books We Love

A reread straight away kind of book

Big Box Little Box by Carl Hart and Illustrated by Edward Underwood is a reread straight away kind of book. For us it was also a renew from the library kind of book.

It’s an amusing story of a cat who interacts with an array of boxes and has a lot of fun along the way.

“Big box

Little box

Huge box

Thin box

Fat box”

Who knew there were so many types of boxes!

Additionally a special friendship is formed with an unlikely creature – who squeeks.

The illustrations are bright, fun and playful. We just love it and reccomend giving Big Box Little Box a read and reread.

Title: Big Box Little Box

Author: Caryl Hart

Illustrator: Edward Underwood

Publisher: Bloomsbury Publishing 2017

Happy page turning x

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in eBook

“Floating on its own next to the moon”

I have recently published my first picture book ( A Wonderful Thing to Win) on Amazon Kindle and Kindle Unlimited. I really enjoyed working on this illustration where the bright blue balloon is “floating on its own next to the moon”. Thought I would share it with you all.

Happy page turning x

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems

Retreat to the retreat

Existence under the African sun is unique,

It offers an array, like no other

Terrain rugged and lush

Journey to the stars of the show,

The flora unique and fauna who roam

Experience to be observed by everyone, never owned

Dust dispersed,

It fogs the view

And settles to reveal nothing.

Where are these creatures?

Where have they gone?

Pained irresponsibility,

Extinction looms.

“That’s a shame, what’s for lunch?”

Retreat to the retreat

A sighting finally,

Majestic and true,

What we came to see

Harsh realisation,

A statue untrue.

Is this what is left?

No reality

Retreat to the retreat

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in eBook

Starting the illustration process…

I have recently published my first picture book entitled A Wonderful Thing to Win. The whole process was exciting and challenging. It felt like everyday I had butterflies in my stomach.

Once the story was written I realised very quickly that a children’s story needs illustrations. When I first challenged myself to illustrate the book I had a very definite starting point – to draw or design Owen and Carson.

This week I have been looking through some of the first illustrations and designs. I used graph paper and pencil to play around with shapes and styles, and boy were there a lot of them!

Here are a few below.

I think Carson got a hold of my pencil and made his own contribution to this drawing

Carson took my pencil and made his own contribution to this drawing.

It was a great feeling to finally settle on a design/ style for Owen & Carson’s Bright Blue Balloon. At this point it felt like the journey had finally begun.

Hope everyone is having a good week!

Happy page turning x

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems

I have a little dream, it whispers in the morning…

I have a little dream

It whispers in the morning “please make time for me,

Just a little moment,

While you have a cup of tea.”

I make my dream a promise

“Let’s check in a two”

Then I go about my day,

Listing things to do.

It’s all so very busy

And soon enough it’s two.

My dream is right on time,

But I am nowhere to be seen

I remember I missed the meeting and think

I’ll show up at three

But then I have that thing,

So I don’t

I have a little dream,

It shouts in the evening

“Where were you?”

I say “I’m very sorry,

Tomorrow is anew.

Let’s arrange a meeting,

Just me and you

I’ll be there, let’s make before two.”

My dream says “will you really?

You’ve promised for a while.

I’ll only wait for so long,

Make some time,

Don’t let it pass you by.”

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Books We Love

The best recipe ever!

A Recipe for Playtime by Peter Bentley & Sarah Massini
A Recipe for Playtime by Peter Bentley & Sarah Massini

Just had to take some time to talk about this beautifully illustrated book: A Recipe for Playtime by Peter Bentley & Sarah Massini. We discovered it on a recent library trip and it’s been a big hit, particularly for Carson (and me).

The story is written like a recipe but is about all the fun things to do at playtime, like paint, play hide-and-seek and much more.

“Take a box of coloured blocks. Lift up lid. Tip up box. See them rising… add one more… See them TUMBLE to the floor.”

After all the fun it’s time to snuggle with a good book and have a nap.

“Softly, softly, creep away. Soon we’ll be back to play.”

I love how the story is written like you are following a recipe. The colourful illustrations and rhyming text adds to the enjoyment of the book.

We recommend following this recipe, the best recipe ever!

Author: Peter Bentley

Illustrator: Sarah Massini

Publisher: Hodder Children’s Books 2017

Happy page turning x

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy 2018

Posted in eBook

New Book Release: A Wonderful Thing to Win

I have always hoped to be a writer and have always loved writing poetry and stories. In recent years (after becoming a Mum) I have been immersed in a world of creativity and imagination where anything is possible. We go on daily adventures through imaginative play (to the land of dinosaurs or to the moon) and children’s literature (some books are copies I have from childhood and others are on our kindle e-reader). The sky is the limit and it is amazing to have the opportunity to revisit childhood and just imagine, be anything you want to be, tap into your creativity.

About a year ago I started writing a story inspired by my boys entitled A Wonderful Thing to Win It’s been a great adventure writing and illustrating this book and I am so excited to announce its now available exclusively on Amazon kindle and Kindle Unlimited (in all Amazon stores) [ search for ASIN B07GCPJ3FQ]

Amazon.com (click here)

Amazon.co.uk (click here )

If you get a chance to check it out I hope you and your children enjoy it!

Happy page turning x

©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

The well-made-for-wishing

Two steps (in the opposite direction to the one he thought he loved)

Was all it took

Clarity,

Peace,

Certainty.

The love they shared was true

It was absolute, for a time.

But as the seconds ticked the relationship stalled,

Leaving shattered debris and uncared for hearts.

Unaccompanied he is left to contemplate,

To adjust,

To dream.

Time moved forward to reveal possibility.

For a while he coasted,

Hoping for extraordinary but accepting the norm.

Finally destiny realigned itself

And he journeyed with difference,

Knowing something would break the monotony.

Along the path he found a penny.

Examination revealed it too had a story to tell,

Passed from palm to palm, enticing soulmates to cross paths.

He placed it safely in his pocket

And followed the path to the well-made-for-wishing.

Unbeknown to our protagonist the penny slipped from

It’s safe haven, landing quietly on the lush grass.

Now soul mates are meant to be,

They search for each other and

Upon meeting the fall into familiarity

Igniting a connection established long ago.

An equally enticing search for love

Encouraged our heroine to journey along the same path.

A welcomed moment in the sun revealed a reflective penny,

Just waiting to be found.

The well-made-for-wishing, the keeper of extraordinary dreams, would accept this token,

And reveal her destiny.

Impatient to complete her task she followed the clouds and took a short cut.

On approach to the-well-made-for-wishing she held her breath

And held the penny close.

After a moment to embrace possibility

She closed her eyes and let fate draw the penny near

Seconds turned to minutes

She opened her eyes in tandem with her exhale.

She noticed him immediately

(Her soulmate-she knew)

He was frantically searching for something

(His token for the well)

His search halted as soon as his eyes locked with hers

There was no need

The search was complete.

Palm to palm they followed the clouds,

Starting their long accompanied journey.

Words and image ©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Poems & Stories

Fireworks remind me it’s August

I always know when August has arrived because around 10:20pm we can hear the fireworks from the Edinburgh Royal Military Tattoo (I had the pleasure of attending the event a few years ago and it has become one of my treasured memories). A few evenings ago I was looking for some inspiration and almost immediately the sound of fireworks caught my attention. This poem and illustration followed.

The night canvas is silent, still

Until…

Suddenly

Buckets of colour rise up

And splash across the night sky,

As if Jackson Pollock stopped by

Moments of wonder

Colours galore

Faces in awe,

Hoping for more

An interval…

Silence,

Anticipation

Another offering

Which colours will be

Red, no purple maybe

An array – all at once

Flashing sparks of colour,

Fill the sky repeatedly

Like Highland dancers,

They twirl and leap

Until the performance is complete

A moment of appreciation before

The crowd disperses

Satisfied,

Whimsical,

Inspired

The night canvas returns once more

Silent,

Still.

~

~

~

Happy page turning x

Words and image ©️ Lisa Moralee McLardy

Posted in Books We Love

One of our favourite bedtime stories

Nothing beats a good bedtime story. We love reading before bedtime and have a a few favourite titles that never seem to get old.

Goodnight Tractor by Michelle Robinson and illustrated by Nick East is one of our favourites. The pages have been turned and turned. It was a 2nd birthday gift from one of our dear friends (Owen’s first friend in fact) and we have been reading it ever since. Owen (4.5 years old) and Carson (recently turned 2) throughly enjoy Goodnight Tractor. They love to get involved and say the words with us.

“the stars are out, it’s time for bed so say goodnight my sleepy head”

The story helps set the tone for bedtime as we follow a little boy on his night time routiene. Where he says goodnight to his toy farm, including the animals, combine and tractor of course.

“Goodnight donkey. Goodnight duck. Goodnight pig and goodnight sheep…”

The rhyming text is complimented by fantastic illustrations which both transport us into a night time farm setting.

We most definitely recommend reading Goodnight Tractor.

“Goodnight tractor, time to sleep”

Title: Goodnight Tractor

Author: Michelle Robinson

Illustrator: Nick East

Publisher: Puffin Books

Happy page turning x

©️Lisa Moralee McLardy