i have five brothers. all are clever and talented, but right now, i want to talk about jonathan, my second to oldest. he has always been "the artist" of the family. he's also witty and bright and has smile lines for days. his eyes are kind and his presence is warm. everyone likes him. it would be impossible to not. growing up, the job of babysitting us younger ones often fell on him. his boundless creativity led him to make up games to pass the time. my favorite was the "madball game" which was a lot like dodgeball, but involved at least three of us running down our hallway trying not to get hit by a ball with wild eyes and snot oozing from every orifice. (the ball--not us.) i missed him SO MUCH when he went off to college. i miss him now. he lives near denver, co with his wife, jennifer (also a published author), and their three kids. starting several years ago, in addition to showing his paintings in galleries in atlanta and nyc, one of his many creative endeavors was writing/illustrating books for children. i was sometimes lucky enough to read a draft. after much persistence and prayer, he's now had two of his books, love is in the air & guppy up!, published by penguin usa. more are in the works. seeing his name on a spine on my bookshelf is a dream come true. i'm so ridiculously proud!
if you have small children who are just beginning to read, i highly recommend these. (naturally.) turtle isn't old enough to read, but she's got them both memorized and loves to "read" them herself. heart-melting, i tell you!