Fishscale Girl by Ann Hailey and a Shop Local Plug on Black Friday

Ann Hailey from Cochiy Press sent me her beautiful book, Fishscale Girl – La Chiquita Escamosa, several months ago. Along with the book, she also sent companion lesson plans written by Angela Chenus, a homeschooling mom of five children. Both ladies are Quad City locals and the book and lesson plans are really nice.

Fishscale Girl is a bilingual story about a doll that is made from the scale of an Amazon fish. The story features beautiful photography by Ann and a delightful story about the adventures of Fishscale Girl. The book shows how she’s made and where she’s from, and describes similarities and differences of Fishscale Girl’s home in the Peruvian Rainforest to her new home in Davenport, Iowa. Ann wrote the book Fishscale Girl not only to show her original creator, a young girl named Rosita, what happened to the doll in the United States, but also as a fundraiser to support schools in the Amazon rainforest. You can watch Ann talk about her inspiration for this lovely book here.

The companion lesson plans written by Angela Chenus, author of the blog A Homeschool Story, feature maps of South America and the lesson plans follow a Waldorf rhythm. The maps were hand drawn by Angela’s own son and my children really enjoyed learning from them. Angela’s daughter writes a blog about Fishscale Girl. The blog is fun and educational – Fishscale Girl reminds people to help save the Earth and to support libraries – two of my very favorite causes!

I’m writing this post on Thanksgiving in part to remind myself to be mindful of my own first world problems. Griping about a chilly house, van tires that won’t hold air, or a half-finished kitchen are really not huge problems in the grand scheme of things.

Trying to decide where to shop or how early to get up on Black Friday is also quite trite when I think about real problems people in Third World Countries face every day. Access to clean water, adequate food, quality education, and gender equality are very real, pressing issues for too many people in our world.

You can help this Thanksgiving by shopping locally and being mindful the impact your shopping dollars can have. If you’d like to help support Ann and the Amazon rainforest, Ann has requested that you ask your local library to order a copy of Fishscale Girl so everyone can access it. Fishscale Girl is available at these local retailers and it’s also available to purchase on-line (with or with-out the companion lesson plans) here. You can also follow Fishscale Girl on Facebook!

If you are local to the Quad Cities, please come on out to the Local Author Book Signing tomorrow Friday, November 25, 2011, from 7-9 pm, at the Bucktown Center for the Arts, 225 E. Second Street, Third Floor, Davenport. This event is sponsored by the Midwest Writing Center and will feature fifteen Quad City regional authors, including Ann Hailey.

Happy Thanksgiving!! And please, make an effort to visit ONE local store tomorrow as you shop door buster sales. I’m going to.

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