A Closer Look at the Book: Grasshopper Bubblegum


Grandma and Grandpa lived on a dairy farm just a few miles from home. We were fortunate to spend many days on their farm throughout the 70s and early 80s. Playing on the farm was always an adventure. Working on the farm became a delightful chore.

Grandma was creative. With lots of grandkids running around she had to be on top of things. There was plenty to do to keep busy, but Grandma was a genius for encouraging us to be productive in our play. She had many clever incentives to inspire this productivity and keep us out of her hair!

Some of my favorites?

Climbing to the very top of the tree for the best mulberries. Sometimes we even took a sandwich and a jug or canteen of water up with us, just in case we wanted to gather berries through the lunch hour.

Filling buckets with thistle was a thrill. We got to cross the road (by ourselves) and hike out far from the house. We were sure we were even out of Grandma’s perfect sight! Grandma offered a penny per thistle in the bucket upon our return. No matter how long it took, our buckets were always full.

And of course I will never forget the garden chores as described in Grasshopper Bubblegum.  Filling our jar with grasshoppers. Trading grasshoppers for Grandma’s pennies. And walking into town to purchase bubblegum.

I wonder if she knew the true value of her pennies. I wonder if she knew these seeds she had planted would grow crops of wisdom, ingenuity, work ethic, problem solving, cooperation, patience, sharing…

These were her true gifts. They are priceless. And she shared them with me.

If you would like to know more about Grasshopper Bubblegum visit my website http://www.shellysimoneaustories.com

I would love to hear from you! Until then…

Keep up your good work,

Shelly Simoneau


A Closer Look at the Book: The Cows Came Running and the Horses Did Too!

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I’ll be sharing a closer look at all my books over the next couple of weeks, as I prepare for the Kansas Book Festival in Topeka, Kansas. The Cows Came Running and the Horses Did Too! was my very first book, released in 2011. The story is based on a 1970s childhood memory that takes place on our humble family farm in Wilsey, Kansas.

I love this story because of its strong connection to just about everyone! It is a story of a dad who says no. His daughters, however, do not listen.

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Ouch! It’s true. I disobeyed my father when I was growing up!

Who doesn’t relate to that?

The best part about this memory is what I got to keep from it over all these years. I gained a rich learning experience of honesty, respect, and responsibility.

And let’s not forget about those natural consequences!

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Find out more about this story at http://www.shellysimoneaustories.com and then share you own story of how you learned that big lesson as a child.

Always Learning,

Shelly Simoneau

Children, obey your parents in the Lord, for this is right. – Eph. 6:1

Character Takes Courage


When I was very young Momma took us to town to run errands. When we returned home she gasped loudly just as we turned into the driveway. There on the front steps of the house was a rattlesnake, coiled and cooling on the smooth cement.

We must have sat in that car just watching it forever, before Momma looked over the seat at us sisters in the back and said, “Stay here. I’m gonna take care of this and then we’ll go in the house.”

Just like that. Then she got out of the car and went into the garage. She came out with a spade and walked boldly toward the snake. I closed my eyes. Tight.

When I opened them the snake was limp over the blade of the spade. Momma nodded to us, letting us know without words that we could get out of the car.

I wanted to be just like Momma when I grew up…

This was a choice of courage on display, an unintended contribution to the building of character in the three young girls watching. This event and others, the moments in life when I decided (I want to…), or pondered (Someone once told me…), or questioned (Have you seen…?) are reflections of impressionable circumstances that have carried my own character forward.

If we courageously choose to continue the display of good character, it has a ripple effect, making a difference in not just one life, but in many. Even a small stone, when thrown into the water, will create a ripple.

This is the purpose of my books, my stories. This, for me, is reason to share. Every good story, no matter how big or small, is the beginning of a ripple. Ripples can carry hope, encouragement, and inspiration. They can share values, lessons, and wisdom. Just a tiny drop of courage to share is all it takes.

Let’s take time to observe and reflect. Let’s challenge each other to continue to share positive, encouraging books and stories. Let’s start a ripple.

Visit the News and Reviews page at www.shellysimoneaustories.com to see specific character lessons for books and stories I share with children and adults of all ages.

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another— Hebrews 10:24-25