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My New Book Came in the Mail! (+ A Giveaway!!)

by Jean Van't Hul
March 1, 2013
The Artful Parent Book Sneak Peek

Look! It’s my book! The Artful Parent: Simple Ways to Fill Your Family’s Life with Art & Creativity. My copies just came in the mail and I got to hold and look through an actual paper copy for the very first time. Super exciting!

In fact, here’s a bit about the day it came (Wednesday):

Recipe for a Perfect Day

Child number 2 is home sick from preschool and instead of feeling frustrated by all the work I’m NOT getting done (as sometimes happens, I admit), I fully enjoy the extra time we have together—playing pretend with stuffed bunnies and bears, reading picture books, and snuggling on the sofa. In the evening, I head out to the French Broad Chocolate Lounge for a mamas’ night out with some friends. After I order my pot of jasmine green tea and a buddha liquid truffle (heaven in a little rustic handcrafted mug), I get a text from my husband saying that a package from my publisher has just arrived. I scream and do a little dance (all in my head) and briefly debate abandoning my chocolate to go see the book immediately. Chocolate and friends win out and I stay, but boy, was I excited to drive home later in the evening and open the package!

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My husband and I sat side by side on the sofa, admiring the book. Flipping through it, commenting on how colorful and heavy it is, and how it felt to finally hold the three-dimensional book in our hands. 

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I’m not usually one to make a big deal out of things, even to the point of just moving on rather than savoring or celebrating accomplishments (I didn’t do anything to celebrate any of the other book milestones, didn’t celebrate my 5 year blogiversary, am not good about anniversaries, etc.), but I have to tell you that I felt incredibly proud right then.

Proud of this book which I had worked so hard on creating and which I truly believe is an excellent guidebook for those who want to make art and creativity more of a priority for the kids in their lives. And, I have to admit, I was proud of myself as well. 

Writing a book is a big undertaking! And I did it! This has been a dream of mine for so long now. I took the first steps toward that dream years ago and I just kept taking little steps, moving toward it, knowing there was no such thing as immediate gratification in an endeavor such as this.

Yesterday, as I was reading chapter three of The Artist’s Way, I came across this quote by Goethe:

Whatever you think you can do or believe you can do, begin it. Action has magic, grace, and power in it.

And I thought, Yes! How true! 

So yes, let it be known that I am proud of myself and proud of this book that I have written.

I am also incredibly thankful to all of the people who have helped me along the way, including you! There would be no book without this blog and its readers; without the incredible community around The Artful Parent; without the learning adventure this blogging and parenting journey has been.

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Sharing The Artful Parent book with my daughters and giving them each their very own copy right away has been another highlight of this whole experience.

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Of course, they mostly enjoyed looking through the photos of themselves and their friends, as well as pointing out which activities they’d like to do again soon. Maia, especially, has been a generous and avid partner throughout the book-writing process, often asking what project she could help with next for “the book.”

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I can’t help but think that maybe, just maybe, this might be making a further impression on them—if not now, then perhaps when they are older. Like most parents, I want to be the best parent I can be and I want to lead by example. 

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I want to provide the example of dreaming big and pursuing a goal (such as writing a book) and following through until I have a published copy of that book in hand.

The Artful Parent: Simple Ways to Fill Your Family’s Life with Art & Creativity will be officially available on April 9th. You can preorder it now if you like, though, through Amazon, Roost Books, Barnes & Noble, Powell’s, and your local independent bookstore.

I’m also going to give away one of the few copies I received (see below)!

The Artful Parent Book Giveaway!

The Artful Parent book If you’d like a chance to receive a signed copy of my book now, before the book release, leave a comment here by Monday, March 4th at 11:59pm EST. One entry per person. Winner will be chosen by random number generator and announced here on Tuesday. Giveaway open to readers everywhere.

Giveaway now closed.

The random number generator gave me #148, so Heather wins the advance copy of The Artful Parent book. Congrats, Heather! (I’ll email you…)

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