These Kids are Inspirational Beyond Their Years#WATWB

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The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be: Lizbeth Hartz, Peter Nena Shilpa Garg, Roshan Radhakrishnan, and Sylvia Stein.

Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ Book of the week. July 17th. 2020

The Mystery of Old Gully Trail

(Samantha Wolf Mysteries Book 9) 

by Tara Ellis (Author)

Old Gully Trailf

When Sam and Ally meet a young troubled girl, a family secret draws them into a mystery that reaches back generations. There’s untold history wrapped up in the origins of their town of Oceanside, and a conflict that was never solved.

With summer break fast approaching the girls embark on a quest that will lead them through the woods near their homes and into the past. But will they find the answers on Old Gully Trail? Or will the haunted memories it protects be too much for them to overcome?

 Another great Samantha Wolf Mystery

Reviewed in Canada on July 13, 2020

I have been reading most of the books in this mystery series, over the past few weeks, they are an exciting read for middle grade readers, and young adults. A series that keeps you guessing to the very last page

Read the whole Samantha Wolf Mysteries series, now an Amazon bestseller!

Available from, and other fine book stores.





Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ Book of the week 6th. July, 2020

Middle School, The Worst Years of My Life

(Middle School series Book 1)

by James Patterson (Author)


Discover the #1 bestselling middle-grade comic that inspired a major motion picture: Children’s Choice Award winner James Patterson has never been more hilarious and heartwarming.

Rafe Khatchadorian has enough problems at home without throwing his first year of middle school into the mix. Luckily, he is got an ace plan for the best year ever: to break every rule in his school’s oppressive Code of Conduct. Chewing gum in class: 5,000 points! Running in the hallway: 10,000 points! Pulling the fire alarm: 50,000 points! But when Rafe’s game starts to catch up with him, he’ll have to decide if winning is all that matters, or if he’s finally ready to face the rules, bullies, and truths he’s been avoiding.

James Patterson’s debut middle-grade novel addresses some of middle schoolers’ biggest issues: bullies, first crushes, and finding out what makes each of us special, all with a hilarious main character and fantastic in-text illustrations that are sure to have young readers begging for more!

Great read for the reluctant reader it was a good funny book, I could not put it down until I had finished it,  I will certainly be reading more of this series in the near future. Keep checking Professor Owl’s Book Corner for some more reviews soon.

Available from,, and other fine book stores.






Professor Owls Book Corner ~ Weekly Book Reviews ~ 28th. June, 2020

This week we have picked another two adventure eBook mysteries to read on your eReader, you can also download them to your computer to a desktop program. Although they were written about several years ago, and do have some religious notations, they are a nail-biting series that really does keep you guessing right up to the last page.

They were written  between 1996 – 2002, and all together there are six books  in the Parker Twins Series available on Amazon some for $0.00 – Again, I read them out of sequence, but they do stand on their own and nothing spoilt the stories or the enjoyment of a great read.

Parker Twins:

1. Cave of the Inca Re (1998)
2. Jungle Hideout (1999)
3. Captured in Colombia (1999)
4. Mystery At Death Canyon (1996)
5. Secret of the Dragon Mark (1996)
6. Race for the Secret Code (2002)

Our books are picked for middle grades or young adults

Captured in Colombia

Parker Twins Series Book 3) Kindle Edition

by Jeanette Windle (Author)

Captured in Colombia.jpgf

When Uncle Pete is kidnapped by Colombian guerrillas, Justin and Jenny Parker must find him before a nearby volcano erupts. But that means deciding whether to trust a new friend—and whether betrayal deserves forgiveness.



(Parker Twins Series Book 5) Kindle Edition

by Jeanette Windle (Author)

The Patker Twins The Dragon Markf

When twins Justin and Jenny Parker witness mysterious men in black terrorizing business owners in a local Vietnamese neighborhood, they want to see justice done. They join forces with a friend who lives in the neighborhood to expose the gang. But as they become targets of those with the dragon mark, they discover that standing up for faith and friendship can mean stepping over the line of their own personal safety.

About the Author

Jeanette Windle

Jeanette Windle.jpgf

Jeanette Windle grew up daughter of American missionaries in South America, where she canoed in jungle rivers, hiked the steep Andes trails, and swung from vines off cliffs into mountain pools. She has since lived in six countries and traveled in more than thirty. Her experiences have birthed eight YA novels, including the Parker Twins Series, and seven adult international intrigue novels, including bestselling Veiled Freedom, Freedom’s Stand, and Congo Daw.

Books are available from, and other fine book stores.

Do not forget to look for another couple of books in next week’s picks.


Professor Owls Weekly Book Review ~ June 20th, 2020

As promised last week, I was able to get copies of Books one and two of the Samantha Wolf Series, they are both a quick read, and were books that kept me guessing right to the very last page.  If you want to read a good mystery this series is for you.

Although I did read book three first, the new books were not spoilt for me as each book can stand on its own.

I really enjoyed these two as much as last week’s story and gave both books five stars.

At the bottom of the page are more books in this series, and Amazon does still have a couple of them on for $0.00 and they are all available for eReaders.

 The Mystery of Hollow Inn

 (Book #1 in the Samantha Wolf Mysteries Series)

Hollow InnF

by Tara Ellis

Twelve-year-old Samantha Wolf, and her best friend Ally, are excited to spend part of their summer break in the mountains of Montana. But unbeknownst to them, Hollow Inn is bathed in mystery and legend. After arriving, they soon discover that things are not going well for Sam’s Aunt and Uncle, who own the Inn. There’s vandalism, ghostly sightings, and rumors of lost treasures. Determined to help, Sam and Ally embark on a challenging journey to find the truth.

 The Secret of Camp Whispering Pines

(Book #2 in the Samantha Wolf Mysteries Series)

Whispering pines_F

By Tara Ellis

What could be better than hiking, swimming, and horseback riding? Having a mystery to solve, of course!

When Sam and Ally go off to summer camp together, they discover the secrets of Camp Whispering Pines. Set in the beautiful, rugged mountains of the Pacific Northwest, the clues are slowly revealed and it’s up to the two girls to figure it out.

New friendships are formed, while at the same time enemies lurk nearby. The closer they get to uncovering the truth behind the camp, the further they are pushed into danger and deceit. Can Sam and Alley put all the pieces together before it’s too late? Follow them on another thrilling tale filled with excitement and adventure, along misty, high mountain trails, and deep ravines, where the answers wait to be found!

All the Books in this series:

Book 1 The Mystery of Hollow Inn
Book 2 The Secret of Camp Whispering Pines
Book 3 The Beach House Mystery
Book 4 The Heiress of Covington Ranch
Book 5 The Haunting of Eagle Creek Middle School
Book 6 A Mysterious Christmas on Orcas Island

Book 7 The Case of the Curious Canine

Book 8 The Legend of Shadow Mountain

Book 9 The Mystery of Old Gully Trail

Book 10 Return to Hollow Inn

Book 11 The Secret of Sanctuary

All books are available from Amazon and other fine book stores.

Do not forget to drop by next week for a new book, check our blog too during the week, as we do add new book suggestions several time  as we get them., and




Professor Owl’s Book Corner ~ Book of the week, June 13, 2020


The Beach House Mystery

(Samantha Wolf Mysteries Book 3)

The Beach House MysteryF

by Tara Ellis and Melchelle Designs

What should be a quiet week at the beach turns into the most challenging mystery that Sam and Ally have uncovered yet. What is the truth behind the odd family renting the cabin next-door? Is the tale of a sea creature and haunted lighthouse just a myth? How does a missing girl, and suspicious boat tie into all of it? The girls cannot solve this puzzle on their own, so they turn to their brothers for help.

Travel with them to the scenic Washington Coast and into the Olympic Rain-forest, where the four must work together to untangle the clues and fit the mysterious pieces together.

For those young readers who love a good mystery or older readers who were fans of the Nancy Drew series and have longed for a great book to share with their children here a great read and series that is well written and has you excited as your turn each page.  I have given this book five stars, because it really was a great story for both girls and boys.

This is book three, and I enjoyed it even without reading the first two books, which I might add I will be reading over the next couple of weeks.

Available from, and

For a limited time, this book can be downloaded from Amazon to your Kindle $0.00

About the Author

Tara Ellis-F

Tara Ellis

Author Tara Ellis lives in a small town in beautiful Washington State, in the Pacific Northwest. She enjoys the quiet lifestyle with her two teenage kids, and several dogs. Tara was a firefighter/EMT and worked in the medical field for many years. She now concentrates on family, photography, and writing middle grade and young adult novels. –This text refers to the paperback edit.

Professor Owls Book Corner ~ September, 2020

Welcome to 2020  Back To School issue of

Professor Owl’s Book Corner Newsletter.  

This year has been  very different  for almost everyone, no  matter what country you live in because of  Covid 19.  At Professor Owl’s Book Corner  we hope that you and your family have been able to stay safe with social distancing and the wearing of masks and by following the guidelines set out for you by your countries health departments.

School this year will be very different for most of you if at school you will still have to do your part and continue with these safety measures. Some of you may have opted in for the online classes.

Over the Summer Professor Owl’s Book Corner has been gathering some how to-do’s  on things to help you adjust to your new school year, no matter what you have decided to do. 

 If we do not  cover what you are having problems with, please do not hesitate in writing to us at   with your questions and we will try to find an answer for you.

We will also be having a new format, with a whole new look coming up soon, so check back “Every Week” to see what we have planned for you.

We will still supporting those with special needs and learning challenges, and are still committed  to being more focused on YA/New Adult reading and literacy.  We will be featuring tips from a certified literacy tutor  to help make your reading experience the best it can be.

We will still be updating our Community News Boards with the latest news from Variety Village. The March of Dimes and Holland Bloorview Children’s Hospital.

Community Boards

Variety – the Children’s Charity of Ontario flagship facility


Variety Village will reopen with health and safety precautions in place, guided by the Provincial Government, Ministry of Health, with the additional resources from the City of Toronto, Pediatric Physiotherapy, Red Cross and The Lifesaving Society. Continue to read below for more information on Variety’s Reopening COVID-19 Protocol.

Members are required to wear masks when walking to/from the workout areas, however once inside the area they may remove their masks while keeping 2m apart.

All staff will be provided with training on Variety facility COVID-19 protocols prior to the commencement of reopening. During training, all staff will be trained on the safe use, limitations and proper care of PPE, including, but not limited to, plexiglass, gloves, masks, and face shields.  In addition, cleaning, hand washing and sanitizing as well as surface disinfecting protocols will be provided. 

All training is done in line with Health and Safety guidelines.  All staff will remain 2 metres apart and be provided with face shields, masks and gloves for the duration of the training. Attendance records will be kept ensuring no staff is permitted to work without attending a training session.

All staff will be screened prior to entering the facility daily as per COVID 19 entry protocols.


  • Registration is subject to availability on a first-come, first-served basis
  • Registration for programs will be done by PHONE on the first day of registration for persons with disabilities
  • General registration will be held ONLINE on our Registration Portal
  • Please note registrants must meet the specified minimum age of the program within three weeks of program start

·       2020

Persons with a Disability

General Membership


 Sept. 16 – 8:00am

 Sept. 19 – 7:30am

Book Online! Click here to access our Registration Portal

Contact our Membership team by calling 416 699 7167

Questions?Book Online! Click here to access our Registration Portal

Contact our Membership team by calling 416 699 7167



COVID-19 (Coronavirus): What you need to know

Last updated: September 8, 2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has created unprecedented challenges for organizations across the country, including March of Dimes Canada. But through this time, our commitment to continue serving and supporting Canadians with disabilities in all aspects of their lives has not wavered. We are doing what is necessary to continue to provide services while keeping everyone safe.

Our front-line staff have adopted strict health and safety protocols to continue to provide essential services to our clients in their homes. Our remaining staff, working from their homes, and have adapted most of our programs to be offered virtually.

The virtual programs have been a great success, providing a sense of connection for our clients who all too often live in isolation. After the pandemic, we will continue to offer programs virtually because they provide easy access to people all over the country.

Gradual Re-Opening

But we have not been able to do everything that our clients require. Some services simply must be delivered in person.

As we have seen public health restrictions lift slightly across Canada, we have made the decision to gradually re-open, with stringent health and safety precautions in place. We are beginning with a select group of services offered by appointment only, in just a few locations, with a small number of employees.

Since this pandemic began, we’ve acted based on the latest public health information and will continue to do so. As always, health and safety remain our first priorities. We appreciate your patience, and hope to see you in person soon.


​Community and After Stroke Programs

 Many of our Community Programs and After Stroke services are being delivered virtually to keep staff and clients safe during the pandemic. We expect this to continue supporting you online for the time being.

Learn more >>

Please help us raise funds!

This pandemic has hit charities – including March of Dimes Canada – hard. Our donor-funded programs rely on donations raised through events that we have had to postpone, and we do not know when it will be safe to gather in large groups again. It’s a difficult situation.

Our Philanthropy team has been working hard to adapt and host online fundraisers so we can continue to provide the support our clients need.

For information about our online fundraisers, please click here

Thank you to everyone who is continued to support us during the pandemic, whether you have donated money or time. Your support makes a difference in the lives of people living with disabilities.

We need your support more than ever! If you are able,  

please donate now.

Thank you for your support. 

Watch our newsletter next month for a listing of events and fundraising in October,2020


March of Dimes Canada Head Office

10 Overlea Blvd.  Toronto, ON M4H 1A4  

Tel: 416-425-3463, Toll-free:  1-800-263-3463  Fax: 416-425-1920



  Mission, Vision & Impact Holland Bloorview

  Our full history | Holland Bloorview

Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital is now Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital focused on improving the lives of kids with disabilities. We are a global leader in applied research, teaching and learning, and client-and family-centred care with a vision to create a world of possibility for kids with disabilities.

   Centre For Leadership | Holland Bloorview

To achieve this mission, they will focus on the following objectives: 1. Support integrated clinical, research and education projects that identify, design, test and implement evidence-based solutions for children youth, families, and/or clinicians.

   About the Bloorview Research Institute | Holland Bloorview…

The Bloorview Research Institute is housed in Holland Bloorview Kids Rehabilitation Hospital, Canada’s largest pediatric rehabilitation and continuing care teaching hospital, which is fully affiliated with the University of Toronto.

   Programs & Services | Holland Bloorview

As a teaching hospitalHolland Bloorview has an interdisciplinary team of autism experts in the areas of research, clinical care, and teaching. Holland Bloorview’s Bioethics Service is dedicated to helping client and family well-being and organizational integrity. 

Holland Bloorview ~ Kids Rehabilitation Hospital is now Canada’s largest children’s rehabilitation hospital focused on improving the lives of kids with disabilities. They are a global leader in applied research, teaching and learning, and client-and family-centred care with a vision to create a world of possibility for kids with disabilities.

 Do not forget to check back every week for another edition of Professor Owl’s Book Corner.


An Astronaut’s Guide to Self Isolation ~ Stay Safe #WATWB

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The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be:

Susan Scott ,  Lizbeth Hartz, Shilpa Garg, Mary Giese , and  Damyanti Biswas,

Social distancing and self-isolating to help slow down the spread of coronavirus isn’t easy, but for astronauts like Chris Hadfield it’s completely normal.

While far away from family and friends working in close quarters with limited supplies this is what astronauts must get used to while he is working for months at a time in space.

Recently Chris Hadfield posted a video called Astronaut’s Guide to Self Isolation to help those struggling with working from home or just feeling stir-crazy during the pandemic.

Please watch the video below ~ and keep your rocket ship safe.

Professor Owls Book Corner ~ May 2020

Welcome to the May 2020 Issue of Professor Owl’s Book Corner Newsletter where in addition to supporting those with special needs and learning challenges, we are also committed to being more focused on YA/New Adult reading and literacy. We will be featuring tips from a certified literacy tutor to help make your reading experience the best it can be.

We will also be encouraging young writers and artists with tips, writing exercises and will still be updating our Community News Boards with the latest news from Variety Village and The March of Dimes.

Please feel free to give us your feedback on our new issue, also send us any ideas you may have to help Professor Owl’s Book Corner be all that it can be. We look forward to hearing from you and to bring you a new, more interesting newsletter.

 I believe most countries are now gradually coming close to getting rid of the  terrible Covid19 virus and schools may start opening up in the next few weeks,  but until then keep following the distancing rules and  things will get back to usual ~ sooner than later!

Thanks to everyone who helped and stayed home and many many special thanks to all the people that worked so hard by looking after us all ~ The first responders’, the nurses and doctors, the home-care worker,  store keepers and truck drivers who made deliveries of all the things we needed.  A special thank to the nursery schools who looked after the children for all of the above and wish all of them a get well soon message, as many of them ended catching the virus themselves and hopefully “Get Better Soon!”

Professor Owl’s Book Corner is aware of the fact also that some of you may still be confined to your own homes and still unable to visit and play with your friends. no hockey no basketball, in fact, most of you, are bored and just do not know what to do, we will give give you a few more ideas to keep you busy until then.

A Few Fun Sites ~ until we get back to our usual routine.

Sunday May 10th is Mother’s Day

Low on funds make a nice card, or gift, get some ideas from the links below, or write her a letter thanking her for everything she does for you.  Make her feel special!


Mothers Day Gifts   (Dollar Store crafts)

Take a look to at our book of the month for more gift ideas.

Take one of the virtual trips below,from your arm chair sit back and off you go…….

Write and let us know if you enjoyed the past few newsletters’ and whether or not you would like us to keep on sharing some of the ideas into the future issues. Just drop us a line at


The Pros and Cons in E-earning


By Sylvia W. McGrath

The People for Education report on technology in schools comes shortly after the Provincial Government  of Ontario announced that all high school students will have to take four e-learning credits – out of the 30 credits needed for a diploma – starting in 2020-21.

What is E-learning?

Experts on e-learning say it is a form of education where a teacher presents a course online, instead of in a traditional classroom. It is done through modules and quizzes that need to be completed in-order to pass.

Once or twice a week, that teacher is available for live communication, but it is up to the students to attend.

When taking their lessons through modules a student is told when these communication classes are to discuss their progress and have any questions they have answered.

It is the students’ responsibility to show up and complete the modules.

If the student does not show, the lack of in-person contact means, teachers cannot accurately assess if a student is struggling.

Apr 8, 2019 – “(Principals) also report that students are keen to sign up for elearning courses, but at times struggle with the self-discipline these courses require …

(Principals) also report in a later report that, students are keen to sign up for e-learning courses, but at times struggle with the self-discipline these courses require,” the report said.

“While it is useful to expose all students to online learning, research has shown that the lowest achieving students consistently perform worse in online courses than in face-to-face classes.”

In TORONTO – Just 5% of students on average per high school in Ontario are currently enrolled in online courses, and some have trouble learning so independently, says a recent report released.

The education advocacy group’s survey found that at least some students are enrolled in e-learning in 87% of schools, though in those schools, only about 5% of students are taking those courses. This is however new to some area’s in Canada.

With the increased use of information and communication technologies (ICTs) in most sectors of society and recent developments in adaptive hardware and software have allowed individuals with disabilities to do things that were difficult or impossible for them to do in the past.

  1. E-learning has allowed people who are blind to read using text-to-speech technology.
  1. People who are deaf to communicate using chat programs, People with difficulties using their hands or arms to write and communicate using dictation software (Fichten, Asuncion, Barile, Fossey, & De Simone, 2000).  
  1. In the postsecondary arena, e-learning (i.e., ICTs used in teaching) are extensively used by professors plus virtually all colleges and universities, not only in the United States, but also in Canada (Abrami et al., 2006)
  2. In the United Kingdom (Weller, Pegler, & Mason, 2005). Whether it is PowerPoint presentations in class, the use of web.
  3. Based discussions to further in-class conversation, or courses delivered completely over the Internet, it is therefore clear that such technologies used by professors are here to stay.

How successfully do these ICTs interact with adaptive hardware and software that some students with disabilities require?

How accessible is the growing array of available e-learning on campus (Konur, 2007; Waddell, 2007)?

These are important questions because the numbers of students with disabilities in postsecondary education have been rising both in Canada (Fichten, Jorgensen, Havel, & Barile, 2006; Tremblay & Le May, 2005) and the US (National Council on Disability, 2003),

A recent large-scale study showed that in 2003–2004, 11% of undergraduates had a disability (Snyder & Dillow, 2007).

From a personal experience as a Literacy Tutor to both young and old adults with learning challenges, my students picked things up much quicker using a computer than sitting reading books etc.

In addition, during the past few years, skill in using ICTs has become mandatory in post-secondary education and the workplace (e.g., Ezziane, 2007).

But how well do the ICTs used by professors in teaching postsecondary courses (i.e., e-learning) meet the needs of students with different disabilities?

How successfully do these ICTs interact with adaptive hardware and software that some students with disabilities require? How accessible is the growing array of available e-learning on campus (Konur, 2007; Waddell, 2007)?

These are important questions because the numbers of students with disabilities in postsecondary education have been rising both in Canada (Fichten, Jorgensen, Havel, & Barile, 2006; Tremblay & Le May, 2005) and the US (National Council on Disability, 2003), where a recent large scale study showed that in 2003–2004, 11% of undergraduates had a disability (Snyder & Dillow, 2007).

In addition, during the past few years, skill in using ICTs has become mandatory in postsecondary education and the workplace (e.g., Ezziane, 2007; Stodden, Conway, & Chang, 2003).

For example, a recent investigation shows that computer use on the job is associated with higher salaries for employees both with and without disabilities (Canadian Council on Social Development, 2004), and that for people with disabilities this is especially important (e.g., Kruse, Krueger, & Drastal, 1996).

Abrami et al. (2006), who recently showed how important e-learning initiatives are in Canadian postsecondary education, also noted that not very much is known about the e-learning needs and concerns of students with disabilities.

ISSN 1436-4522 (online) and 1176-3647 (print). © International Forum of Educational Technology & Society (IFETS). The authors and the forum jointly retain the copyright of the articles. Permission to make digital or hard copies of part or all of this work for personal or classroom use is granted without fee provided that copies are not made or distributed for profit or commercial advantage and that copies bear the full citation on the first page. Copyrights for components of this work owned by others than IFETS must be honoured. Abstracting with credit is permitted. To copy otherwise, to republish, to post on servers, or to redistribute to lists, requires prior specific permission and/or a fee. Request permissions from the editors at

Conclusion: The Value and the Promise of Self-study what they learn, new knowledge emerges. The work in a special issue of Teacher Educational Quarterly (Russell and Pinnegar, 1995) provides one example of that, while McNiffs Teaching as Learning (1993) is another …

Learning Forward: The Challenges of eLearning – CHA Learning › News

Wise Picks


Craft Lab for Kids:52 DIY Projects to Inspire, Excite, and Empower Kids to Create Useful, Beautiful Handmade Goods

Craft Lab for kids

by Stephanie Corfee

Through 52 fun, customizable crafts activities, Craft Lab for Kids promotes creativity and hands-on making for kids age 8 and up.



With Craft Lab for Kids, help your kids tap into the fun and empowerment of creating their own custom designs to wear, decorate with, and give. Spruce Up Your Stuff. Learn fun ways to personalize with a variety of embellishment techniquesExpress Yourself! Add your personality to all kinds of homemade projectsTake Care of YOU. Self-care DIY projects to benefit their well-beingKids Just Wanna Have Fun. Just-for-fun projects to make everyone smileClassicCrafts with a Twist. Tried-and-true crafts updated for today’s kids15-Minute Makes. Quickie crafts to make in a flashKindness Crafts. Crafty creations to brighten someone’s dayEnjoy the pleasure and satisfaction of making things together with Craft Lab for Kids!

A wonderful book for inspiring children to try their hands at a variation of craft projects.  The illustrations and photographs are beautiful and will encourage anyone to have a go.  Some projects do require specialist materials that you probably would not have on hand immediately, but many could be adapted and used as a springboard to create something else.  There are projects suitable for all ages and abilities and some more basic than others.  A great book to have on hand when all the kids are at home looking for something to do. Also an inspiration for older people to make quick gifts, there is something for every age.

 Thank you to NetGalley for a copy of this book in exchange for a review

About Author

Stephenie Cofee

  Stephanie Corfee

Stephanie Corfee is an artist, designer, and author who works from her home studio in Malvern, Pennsylvania. Her artwork is charmingly whimsical with a feminine, youthful spirit. She has written several art books and licenses her surface designs for gifts, apparel, and home accessories.

Her licensed artwork can be found on products that can be purchased through retailers like Target, Urban Outfitters, Bed Bath & Beyond and Home Goods. She has worked with publishers Quarto Books, Walter Foster Publishing, Capstone Publishing and Hachette Book Group.

Stephanie Corfee’ s  popular Lab for Kids series features a growing list of books that share hands-on activities and projects on a wide host of topics, including art, astronomy, clay, geology, math, and even how to create your own circus—all authored by established experts in their fields. Each lab contains a complete materials list, clear step-by-step photographs of the process, as well as finished samples. The labs can be used as singular projects or as part of a yearlong curriculum of experiential learning. The activities are open-ended, designed to be explored over and over, often with different results. Geared toward being taught or guided by adults, they are enriching for a range of ages and skill levels. Gain firsthand knowledge on your favorite topic with Lab for Kids.

Creative pursuits have always been a part of her life. She feels very lucky that she can make a career of it so that she can be home to care for her 3 boys, Coop, Grey, and Lang. Having a certain amount of flexibility in her work hours gives her family a break from the strict 9-5 routine. The best days for Stephanie are when her husband gets home early, the sun is shining, and she can play hooky for the afternoon. Living this way keeps her sane and provides her with constant inspiration for new art.
Learn more at

Professor Owl’s Favourite Book:


First in The Flying Ponies series


By L.M. Ransom

For sixteen-year-old Charlotte Flynn, moving into the heart of the Michigan woods with her family is the biggest adventure she’s ever had. A self-proclaimed geek girl with a penchant for Sherlock Holmes, she wonders if she’ll ever have an exciting quest of her own.

But when she discovers an antique carousel tucked into the woods near her new home, her life soon spins out of control. For the ponies are so much more than their faded paint portrays. Filled with primal magic, the ponies are alive, and they have been waiting for her for a long time.

With the help of a young carousel caretaker named Black, Charlotte soon discovers that the Flying Ponies are in danger from others who want to possess them and their magic. Drawn into a battle for the carousel and ultimately the entire world while navigating her first true romance, Charlotte may have more adventure than she ever bargained for . . .

“This is a great read for young adult readers’. It’s a charming read told through the eyes of the modern geek-girl teen. There are references to all the favorites — Star Wars, Doctor Who, and Harry Potter — but Ransom does a fine job of relating to each of these without trying to be any of them.

I found the book an exciting read, full of adventure, magic, love and fantasy! If you like C.S. Lewis, you’ll love this book. This is the first installment of The Flying Ponies Trilogy and I can’t wait for book 2!

All Books Available from, other fine book stores , School’s and Community Libraries.

About Author

Linda RansomF

L.M. Ransom

Goodreads Author

Born in Shelby, The United States





Young AdultFantasy

  1. M. Ransom lives in West Michigan with her husband, son, and daughter. She also shares her home with two crazy Dachshunds, and her heart with two naughty ponies. L.M. is a librarian by trade, and an author by passion. She draws from her lifelong love and obsession with all things equine to spin tales about nefarious carousel horses.
    A self-professed geek girl, L.M.’s fandoms span the galaxy from Tatooine to Gallifrey, and back down to the seedy streets of Gotham City. As a Christian, she feels a calling to tell clean, intriguing stories for readers to escape into. You can find L. M. on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter, and


Writing prompts are a wonderful way to kick-start your creativity and generate ideas. There isn’t a right or wrong way to respond, just be honest, be creative and use your imagination!

Write, be creative and most of all HAVE FUN!

This spring so much has changed in wake of the COVID-19 pandemic. We’re all social distancing at home, away from our friends, and routines. During these difficult our hearts go out to all of you, especially if you have been personally affected by this horrible illness.
Often when I face uncertainty, I find a way to use it to inspire creativity. This month’s writing prompt hopefully will do the same for you.
Your mission should you accept it…

As many of us are aware when things begin to open up again the world will most likely be a little different for each one of us.  Write about what you hope the world will be like when we emerge again? What will our new normal look like? Will the earth be cleaner, will people be kinder, will we spend more time with our family?

Writing Prompt~A picture is worth a thousand words…

‘Reading gives us someplace to go when we must stay where we are.’ ~Mason Cooley  

What was the last book you read? Since we are stuck in one place write about what happens when you step through a portal and end up in a setting from this book.  Are you transported to a different city, country or planet? Have you travelled into the past or into the future?

Get creative, write and most of all, have fun! 🙂


Flexing Those Creative Muscles!

Although I normally talk about writing there are so many more creative activities you can do while at home and for most of you I think it is a perfect time to give something new a try. If you don’t think you are creative enough, I think it’s time we had a little talk….

Unfortunately,  you may believe that only a few people are capable of being creative, that it is some sort of an exclusive club that you don’t think you can be a member of. This is one of life’s biggest myths and the truth is, creativity is a lot like your muscles; everyone has creativity but they need to use it regularly in order for it to work properly and not get out of shape. You don’t need to be a Picasso, Ansel Adams or Hendricks to be creative, you just have to dedicate yourself to doing what you enjoy and uncovering your creative potential.

How does one begin to develop one’s creative muscle?

Focus on a creative activity every day!

Whether it’s journaling, doodling, painting, making music, writing or crafts, do anything that inspires you and makes you come alive. By performing small creative tasks, you are exercising your creative “muscle” helping it to grow strong.

Think outside the box!

Sometimes, challenges and limitations can be a good thing, especially when they force you to work within your means and find different approaches. Challenges often motivate you to be more imaginative in solving a problem or creating an item. Creativity is essentially breaking through barriers and doing something different. Some of the most creative people in the world have used challenges to motivate them, they have had no choice but to work around constraints and find solutions. Learning to think outside the box in your creative life can also give you the boost you need when you face problems in your day to day life.

Immerse yourself in creative culture and learn all you can!

Want to write? Write everyday and read everything you can, both the good and bad. Want to be musician? Listen to many different types of  music, practice daily and take in online streaming music performances to learn from others. Never get discouraged if you think someone is more gifted than you…remember, they once started where you are now.

Keep an open mind!

By training yourself to look at life with a creative eye, you open yourself to the never-ending potential of what you encounter every day. Once you have opened your creative eyes you will find that you’ll notice more and more things which will serve to inspire you. The more you know, the more you will desire to know, and the more active your sense of wonder will become.

Try something new on a daily basis!

By learning a new skill and doing something in a slightly different way you can produce different results. By taking a different route on your daily walk, you can change what you see, changing your experiences can expand your point of view.  While stuck at home check out online resources, research new websites or online groups.  Search out #hashtags of interests and follow/friend people interested in the same things i.e. if you are interested in writing try the #writingcommunity hashtag on Instagram and twitter, Facebook has so many groups dedicated to different creative pursuits. Finding one that shares your intrest will help you to expand and enrich your online social circle. The more you push yourself out of your comfort zone every day,  the more your sense of adventure grows and so does your passion for creating.

By unleashing your creativity, you will bring about a new passion for life. The more you develop those creative muscles, the stronger they’ll grow, the more able they are to produce, inspiring you to take yourself to the next level.

“You can’t use up creativity. The more you use, the more you have.”
~ Maya Angelou

Community Boards

See you soon! Due to Covid 19 Variety Village will be closed until further notice ~ Check back for updates.


Click to access Variety-Program-Guide-Spring-Summer-2020-reduced.pdf

Variety Village is a family-friendly fitness, sports and life skills facility in Toronto.

There are programs for all ages and skill levels, join today!

Variety Village is pleased to host exciting special events throughout the year. Our goal is to connect with our community and raise funds to support Variety Village by creating mutually beneficial events that support healthy, active lifestyles in an inclusive environment.

We’ll periodically send you news and updates regarding special events, facility closures & alerts, and other important information

Events · Restrictions & Closures · Variety Village in Toronto

Local Events | Variety – the Children’s Charity of Ontario

Access Expo – Variety Ontario

Discover ability-enhancing products and services, play adaptive sports and attend informative workshops. Register for free today! This inaugural year will showcase programs and services promoting: accessibility, inclusion, healthcare, sport, fitness, and healthy living at a premier accessible facility – Variety Village in Scarborough, Ontario.

Home | Variety Ontario

How we help. Variety programming empowers children with disabilities to be seen, participate, and feel included. We bring accessible facilities to life with sports, fitness, activities, summer camps, skills training, and coaching for competitive and Paralympic athletes.

Active Living Conference – Variety Ontario

Access Expo – Variety Ontario

Active Living Conference – Variety Ontario



Events for May 2020

COVID-19 (Coronavirus) – What you need to know

We are closely monitoring developments related to COVID-19 (coronavirus) and are taking action to ensure health and safety throughout our operations. Our response plan is informed by the latest information from the Public Health Agency of Canada. Whether you receive services from MODC, or are a partner or supporter, os dernières mises à jour au sujet du COVID-

For updates on The March of Dimes Events ~ Please visit the link below.

No training, no practice, just loads of fun but with big impact for 129,000 Canadians living with physical disabilities.

Benefitting Stroke Recovery Association of British Columbia
an affiliate of March of Dimes Canada

For more information contact:
Berat Barzanjee
Fund Development Assistant
March of Dimes Canada
10 Overlea Blvd.
Toronto, ON M4H 1A4
Phone:(416) 425-3463 ext. 7305

With Random acts of kindness during Covid 19 ~ Our world may be a better place when we all get back to our lives #WATWB

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The #WATWB was created as a mission to negate the overwhelming negativity that has been present in our social media streams. For every negative news story in the world, there are plenty of positive, uplifting stories that show hope, compassion and the resiliency of everyday people who face insurmountable challenges. Our hope is to share heartwarming stories that lift the human spirit.
The last Friday of every month bloggers will share their stories led by six co-hosts, this month’s co-host will be:
By now, you are probably sick of all the bad news COVID19 has brought world wide. Cases are rising daily, new countries going into lockdown, travel plans just not happening. So far this year is not looking very bright, is it?However, there is no need for us to feel like the end of the world is here. Over decades our parents and grandparents have survived as we will too.

There has been  a lot of harm to many people in so many ways as the result of COVID-19. It’s a sad and serious situation.

It has, however,  also brought people together. Political parties, city officials have all worked together to help ease the financial burdens for the families in need, changing laws to help being housebound or a fear of losing one’s job a little more bearable.

We must not forget the wonderful nurses and doctors who have worked so hard in the hospitals and of course the first responders, and it is not over yet.  I would like to extend “A special thank you to all!”

Today I  am just showing the way random acts of kindness, have given people hope that there is a light at the end of the tunnel and life could be a lot better for us all.

To view the videos ~ Please click on the link below: