Ask Steady Eddie, and he’ll tell you that (my) reading has taken him a lot of places he never imagined dreamed he’d go. Like Prince Edward Island, Canada. Or DeSmet, S.D. Or any of the other several obscure places we’ve sought out due to my reading. Last night, it took us to Murfreesboro, Tennessee, to Hastings Bookstore for Jan Brett’s Spring Tour promoting her new book, The Easter Egg. I first read about the tour in an issue of Family Fun magazine (which was actually promoting her handpainted egg giveaway). When I saw on her website that she was going to be only a couple of hours from our home, I immediately begin plotting to go. Nevermind the fact that it was on the eve of one of our busiest weekends of the enter year. Steady Eddie, being the loving man that he is, agreed to my harebrained scheme.
When we pulled into the parking lot, we saw the big bus. That was exciting!
Of course, I had to pose for a picture with it! It is beautiful!
When we entered the store, we saw Jan Brett set up at her table. There was a long, long line snaking away from the table toward the back of the store. We simply found what we thought was the end of the line and got in it. It turns out that this was only a small portion of the line, and the kind ladies at the back of this portion of the line instructed us to go get a ticket. Ah, a ticket.
Do you see that tiny little number in the bottom, right-hand corner? 234. That’s right–we held ticket number 234. After conversing with the manager, we decided it might be best to leave, get a bite for supper, and come back. So we did.
The poor McAlister’s Deli located in the parking lot of the shopping center we were in boasted that Kids Eat FREE on Tuesday and Thursday nights! I’ll bet they never dreamed how many kids would make their way from Hastings to their besieged restaurant last night.
After enjoying our supper, we returned to Hastings at about 7:00 to resume our place in line. Steady Eddie and I took turns taking the girls around the store to shop. They had $5 from their nana to spend, and those bills were burning the proverbial holes in their pockets. In some of our meanderings about the store, we ran into Hedgie!
Seven p.m. was the time the book signing was supposed to end, but we were still at the very end of a long, long line, and we had been assured that Jan Brett would stay to the very end.
She did. A little bit before 9:00, we made it to the front of the line. When we got almost to the table, I noticed this sweet illustration on an easel. I learned that Jan Brett had demonstrated her drawing skills when the book signing began–at 5:00, before we arrived. I hated that we missed it, but I was glad to snap this picture.
It turns out that those tickets were for the number of books you had for her to sign–two books per ticket. I had already purchased The Easter Egg and On Noah’s Ark, but we also brought along our Christmas Treasury and a paperback for her to sign. The nice folks in front of us had an extra ticket, so Steady Eddie even got in on the action!
Jan Brett was very kind and engaging, despite the fact that we were ticket holder number 234. She had already completed one book signing in Knoxville earlier in the day, but she and her handwriting were just as crisp and beautiful as if they had just begun!
Despite the fact that we didn’t get home until midnight last night, I am very glad we went. It was exciting to meet this real-life, extraordinarily talented, and very famous author and illustrator. I hope my girls remember this, but if they don’t, we have the books (and the pictures)!
We still haven’t even had a chance to read either of the new books (and truthfully, I bought On Noah’s Ark in board book format for baby brother), but I’m looking forward to sharing them with the girls.
I’m glad we got to take part in Jan Brett’s 2010 Spring Tour!
After all, reading can take you places you’ve never dreamed you’ll go!
Please excuse this hastily written post, but I wanted to share these pictures and our little adventure before I go on semi-bloggy break for the next couple of weeks. I’ll still be posting some TOS HomeschoolCrew reviews and Read Aloud Thursday will go on as usual, and I might have a few other pre-scheduled post. Other than that (!!!), things should be quiet here. My quilting post I promised earlier in the week will have to wait until after Easter. By then, I will be posting at my new, self-hosted address! That blog will go live April 5.
And now, I’m off to prepare for our next adventure!