book therapy

friday was a crummy day. completely non-enjoyable. i’m not going to go so far as saying it was a bad day because in comparison to third world issues it was nothing. smooth sailing. but as far as non-significant first world problems are concerned, it was both sucky and inconvenient.

my newish car started buzzing, vibrating, whatever the technical term for ‘my car is acting funny’ is. plus my oil light kept going on. i guess i need more oil, i thought. so i went to the gas station. 

“my car is acting funny and i think my oil needs to be checked” i told a cute teenager.

“ok”, he said. “no problem”

awkward silence.

“so i’m going to need you to pop your hood” he said.

“um”, i replied. “i don’t actually know how to do that”.

“it’s right here”, said my sister who was with me. she neither has a driver’s license or a car.

it turned out that the oil was fine but my car was still acting weird. i called parts and service at the dealership where i had purchased the car and was advised not to drive. a tow truck arrived but i had no way of safely getting to the dealership so i could get a courtesy car since i had kid #2 and #3 with me. this was quite the sucky situation. i asked for the courtesy car to be driven out to me so i could get to the dealership and work out what was going on. after all i was only 20 minutes away.

“no”, i was told. “we’re currently having a sale and are very busy at the moment”. customer service at its best.

luckily my sister was able to get int touch with her boyfriend who piled us all into his van and drove us there.

now for the fun “i can’t believe this actually happened” moment. here i am exiting the van. i’m pushing the stroller with kid #2 on the back. kid #3 has fallen asleep in her car seat so i’m carrying her in it. tucked under my arm is kid #1′s booster seat and my sister is struggling to carry kid #2′s surprisingly large toddler seat.

we must have looked like a disastrous disaster. i can only imagine.

an employee of this particular brand of cars was clearly waiting for me to make my way over to him. i assumed he was the parts and service guy i had been conversing with on the phone.

“are you here to purchase a car” he asked jovially.

i assumed he was joking.

but no. as soon as i said i was not in fact there to buy a car he turned on his heel and walked away. true story.

after signing papers and dealing with the courtesy car situation we were off. but i was in a terribly horrible mood. and we were close to my favourite bookstore. and i decided that i not only needed but actually DESERVED a new book. or four. whatever.

for myself i purchased ‘the rosie project’


and ‘the elegance of the hedgehog’


and then also for myself, i mean my kids, i bought oliver jeffers’ newest picture book ‘the huey’s in it wasn’t me’



as well as his newly illustrated book ‘the day the crayons quit’



and then i felt much better. just like i knew i would.

and then the car dealership called and asked me to bring the courtesy car back to exchange it for another one because they had decided they wanted to sell the one they had loaned me and could i please do that this afternoon. i said no. because i am not a push over.

“can you bring it in tomorrow morning then? we need it as soon as possible” i was told.

“i have a busy day tomorrow” i told them back. “so i think you’ll probably have to bring the new car to me. but i’ll need you to do this no later than 9am because i have a place to be at”. and that was that.

and then 8:55am came and the phone rang and i didn’t recognize the number. so naturally i asked hubby to answer it for me because i am scared of strangers on the phone. but he had a mouth full of granola so i had to tentatively answer it myself. it was the car guy and he was in my drive way.

damn. i had totally forgotten.

proof that once again i cannot get it together. my uselessness exhausts me.

anyway, kid #2 and i have been reading the oliver jeffers books over and over again. she loves the ridiculousness of the hueys. kid #1 just really likes to give the story angry sound effects. they love the crayon book just as much.

oliver jeffers has been a household name in this family ever since i fell madly in love with ‘how to catch a star’ when kid #1 was a year old. he’s been hooked ever since and he’ll tell anyone who asks that ‘the incredible book eating boy’ will always be his favourite. santa splurged for the pop up edition one time.



kid #2 thinks ‘stuck’ is the most hilarious thing that’s ever been read to her. every single time. “he’s such a silly guy! he threw a cat up there? hahahah!” every. single. time.



my husband loves ‘the great paper caper’



because it’s got a criminal/police edge to it of course.

i will also mention that my husband literally jumped with delight when i showed him the new books. he’s as mad about oliver jeffers as we are.

so as you might imagine i was completely delighted when i saw that oliver jeffers‘ website now had a new component called oliver jeffers’ world.


in oliver jeffers’ world kids can print pictures, puppets, and puzzles to make which feature favourite characters like the huey’s, the boy, the penguin, the bear, and others. you can also click on characters and take them for bike rides, space hops, and to the south pole.


it’s a visually stunning website and loads of fun too so get your kids over there.

so, while i was searching out some oliver jeffers related images, i happened to stumble upon one perfect day where a super crafty (ugh!) and eco-friendly mom and her kids have recreated scenes from lost and found with materials they’ve found around their home.



but for the less crafty (ahem) and more intellectual moms (and dads) out there, he co-created the opening film for TED2013 and has been very involved in the process of this year’s conference which features the theme ‘the wise. the young. the undiscovered’




isn’t oliver jeffers fabulous?

i may not know how to check the oil in my car, but i sure can pick my storytellers.




6 thoughts on “book therapy

  1. Maybe a book entitled ‘Grumpy’s Car Service Department -we’re not happy until you’re not happy’… On the flip side, look at all the amazing books everyone got….this makes me want to read them ALL !!

  2. Book therapy is the best. Love Hedgehog (thought the movie was quite great too). And will check out The Rosie Project. And this Oliver Jeffers miniatures blog you speak of, going there NOW. My favorite ridiculous thing to say: Tomorrow is another day. 😉

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