Living with Grace Blog

What’s new with Katy and Grace!

Let There Be Magic in 2024

It seems hard to believe I was saying goodbye to Grace at this time last year. She was such a big part of my life and I miss her every day. That said, I’ve come to realize the beauty of Grace living on through her books.

At least once a week I get a picture from a parent who wants to share about the special connection their child has with Grace. A connection they make through her stories.

I wish I could share with you all the emails, phone calls and text messages I receive. They come from people who are truly her fans. The sweet photo below came to me this week from a family in Maryland.

Recently, I was driving to meet a 5-year-old, Amelia, because she wanted to meet Grace’s mommy. I reminded myself on the way to meet her that “this is a joyous occasion.” I am so lucky to connect with young readers who absolutely adore Grace.

This is a long way of saying, there’s beauty and joy even in difficult times, we must look for it. The beauty I see is connecting with each of you and knowing Grace lives on through the Everybody Loves Grace books.

My hope for all of you is to find the magic in simple things in life and the holiday season.

Merry Christmas, Katy

Everybody Loves Grace Book Signing – 25 November 2023

I’m excited to be signing Grace books on Saturday, November 25th…a busy shopping day on the weekend after Thanksgiving. What I’m most exited about is spreading the word about the Everybody Loves Grace series and having the books reach more children.

Please invite your friends and join me on Saturday the 25th from 1:00 – 3:00pm at the Denver Southwest Barnes & Noble located at 8136 W. Bowles Ave, Littleton, CO.

Cheers, Katy

Dog Days of Summer

I recently held a book launch for my new book, Humble Yet Fierce: My Life Behind the Curtain of the CIA. It was a wonderful party filled with friends, family, neighbors and many former colleagues. It was a night of reconnecting with important people in my life. I didn’t want to end.

The celebration was held in the Glory Days Grill in Falls Church, Virginia. It was a sweet reminder of the book signing we did a few years ago to celebrate the Everybody Loves Grace series. The only difference this time was Grace wasn’t there to greet everyone, work the room, and find yummy bits of food on the floor.

It’s hard to believe the dog days of the summer of 2023 are almost over. I wanted to remind readers to take advantage of the 20% off every Everybody Loves Grace book through the end of August.

I hope everyone enjoys the end of summer and that our kids and teachers have a wonderful school year.

With Love, Katy

Humble Yet Fierce

My newest book, Humble Yet Fierce: My Life Behind the Curtain of the CIA, is dedicated to Grace for helping me find my voice. When I started telling Grace’s stories, I had no idea they would lead me to writing my story.

Often, we want to speak up, but we don’t, gripped by fear and the need to get along. The reality is, it’s hard to find our voice: and then one day we do.

Like the Everybody Loves Grace stories, I bring my true-life stories of courage, faith, and adventure related to that journey. From the life-changing events in my first year of college to my career in the CIA, I share that you don’t have to be loud to be strong.

It’s only fitting that Grace is on the cover of the book with me as I am often reminded how Grace epitomized being Humble Yet Fierce. You can read about Grace in Part 8: Find Your Voice.

If you are interested in ordering the book, you can  buy it on Amazon.

Grace’s Legacy Lives On

Dear Friends and Grace Followers,

I have struggled with how to share the news of Grace’s passing. This is a post I never wanted to write but knew that it was inevitable. Death is a part of the cycle of life.

Grace lived with such a strong spirit until the bitter end, and then she let me know it was time. She was as dignified in death as she was in life.

I am grateful she shared her life with me and with all of you through her stories. She brought joy, adventure and love to everyone she met for 16 years.

I plan to write book seven of the Everybody Loves Grace series. In her parting message, Grace asked me to share her story that we are never too old for a new adventure. She also wanted to remind us to love and live every day to the fullest.

Much Love, Katy

Another Mile High Radio Interview

I had another fun interview with Murphy Huston on the radio. Murphy does such a great job asking questions that help me share the impact of the Everybody Loves Grace series on people of all ages.

During the interview we talked about the launch of the Living with Grace-A Seniors Program designed to support caretakers in their mission to provide seniors with a fuller and happier life. The messages the program delivers are timely and positive, and relative to their special needs. A focus of the program is to support seniors with ways to navigate change, be active and stay connected. 

Stay tuned for more fun happenings related to the Living with Grace program. In the meantime, you can have a listen to my latest interview that aired on Bonneville Radio’s KOSI 101.1 and KYGO 98.5.

Lovingly, Katy

Showcasing Living with Grace – A Seniors Program

I’m excited to share that we are officially launching the Living with Grace Seniors Program. This special program was developed to provide seniors with a fuller and happier life. The messages the program delivers are positive, timely, and relevant to their special needs. We’ve tried it out at a number of centers and have seen first-hand how the program brings the participants joy within themselves and connection with others.

Studies have shown that when seniors are engaged with others, emotional well-being and physical health improves. Because growing older comes with many changes, it is essentially important to support seniors with ways to navigate change, be active, feel inspired, stay connected with others and see themselves as valuable contributors within their community. To live in this way is to thrive.

The Living with Grace Seniors Program is filled with stories to share, meaningful connections, contributes to an organization and provides participants with ways to thrive each day.

I look forward to sharing with you how this adventure unfolds. The program launch is at the National Adult Day Services Association conference in Pittsburgh, PA on 12-14 October 2022. Lovingly, Katy

Team Living with Grace

Dog Days of Summer

I don’t know about you, but I’m ready for the summer heat wave to be over. It’s been one hot summer and I spend a lot of time inside by an air conditioning vent.

We are in the “Dog Days” of summer which are usually the hottest and most unbearable days of the year. Most people think “Dog Days” is a reference to the hot and humid days that are “not fit for a dog.” You might be surprised to know the phrase is a reference to the rising of Sirius, the Dog Star that is a part of the constellation Canis Major, the Greater Dog.

Sirius is the brightest star in the sky and it’s not hard to find.

“Dog days are approaching; you must, therefore, make both hay and haste while the Sun shines, for when old Sirius takes command of the weather, he is such an unsteady, crazy dog, there is no dependence upon him.” – The Old Farmer’s Almanac, 1817

We have a special sale going on for Everybody Loves Grace: A True Story of Grace’s Adventure to Washington, DC. A perfect book for reading indoors on a hot summer day. Visit www.everybodylovesgrace.com.

Lovingly, Grace

Dog Days of Summer 2022

Grace Is A Road Warrior

Some readers think I’m kidding when I say Grace doesn’t sleep when she’s in
the car on a road trip, but it’s true. Grace made another cross-country trip
with me this month and she slept a total of 30 minutes, max.  It only took us three days to drive from Colorado
to Virginia thanks to the help from my dear friend, Beth Nicoson.

Grace did an amazing job of going with the flow on the trip even when the
car’s air conditioning decided not to work while driving through Nebraska.
The kind staff at Dirk’s Auto in Lincoln, NE, fit us in for a repair because we
were traveling with “a senior dog.” Thanks to Dirk’s, our car was in
the shop at 0800am on day two of our drive, and we were cool and ready to go by
0900am.

The July road trip combined with the last few months have all the key elements for a new Everybody Loves Grace story. I’m excited to get writing book 7 in the series.

Until Then, Katy

Schools Out for Summer

I’ve made some special friends this year at the Joan Farley Academy in Denver, Colorado. Mommy and I met regularly with their students on Monday mornings. The kids are so easy to be with and I love when they read my first book out loud.

Some of the kids are really shy so it’s fun to see them willingly participate in the book readings. I like it because they make Mommy laugh as she listens to my stories. It seems no matter how many times Mommy hears them (and don’t forget she wrote them) she still laughs out loud.

I hope everyone has a wonderful Memorial Day Weekend which is the official start of summer.

Lovingly, Grace

Finishing up at the Joan Farley Academy

Grace Helps Children Learn to Read

The word is out about the impact Grace and the Everybody Loves Grace series is having to help children learn to read. The testimonials from parents about their child overcoming reading difficulties or wanting to read before bed for the first time, is what keeps us going. And it’s all because of Grace and grace.

We’ve been blessed with some amazing media coverage recently. Please see what we’ve been up to on our “in the news” tab https://www.everybodylovesgrace.com/in-the-news/

Read Across America Day – 2 March 2022

Making a Difference Every Day – That’s Grace

Word is getting around Denver about Grace and how she simply looks people in the eyes and it makes them feel loved. I want to thank Amanda Hancock with The Denver Gazette for writing a story about Grace that truly captures her essence.

Thank you, Amanda, for sharing about Grace and how her love is felt by all who meet her. Just click on this link to read the article.

https://denvergazette.com/life/after-leaving-cia-colorado-woman-pens-books-inspired-by-her-lovable-dog-grace/article_b1d39902-979d-5633-91c5-87709acd197c.html?utm_source=dg-news-alert&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=alert

I’m so happy!

Helping Children Learn to Read

That’s something I love to do, and it’s proven that dogs help kids learn to read.

My mommy says, “children need to practice a lot when first learning to read.” And for kids, it can be embarrassing to mess up, but when they are practicing with a dog like me, they don’t mind making mistakes.

A recent study by researchers at the University of California, Davis confirmed that children who read to, or with dogs really do perform better. Young students who read out loud to dogs improved their reading skills by 12 percent over the course of a 10-week program, while children in the same program who didn’t read to dogs showed no improvement.

In case you want to hear more, here’s an interview on Channel 11 with my mommy. She talked about our adventures, book readings and helping kids learn to read.

https://www.kktv.com/2022/02/11/colorado-author-inspires-young-people-read-through-her-book-series-canine-companion/

Lovingly, Grace

Life Lessons from 2021

Hello My Friends,

It’s that time of year when I share important things I learned throughout the year. This was another year filled with new life lessons for me:

  1. Follow Your Heart – Go where your heart leads you, it never fails and will take you where you’re meant to be
  2. Use Your Voice – Bark as loud as necessary in order to be heard
  3. Embrace Your Friends – Good friends are priceless and it’s important to help each other

Mommy and I wish you a Happy New Year and I’m so grateful you are in my life.

Lovingly, Grace

Life Lessons from 2021

Christmas Blessings

We are so blessed to have each of you in our lives supporting the Everybody Loves Grace series and all the books are doing to impact lives. Thank you, we absolutely love the feedback we received from children and adults alike throughout the year!

We wish you a Merry Christmas and many fun-filled adventures in the New Year. Grace says, “Just remember, every day is an adventure.”

Lovingly, Katy and Grace

Merry Christmas and Happy New Year 2022!

My Favorite Illustrator

Remember I mentioned teamwork in my last blog? A very important person on my team is Susan Lavalley. She creates the beautiful illustrations for the Everybody Loves Grace books to include the covers and inside of each book.

When Mommy writes my stories, I let her know when the manuscript is done. Yes, that’s true! Then the first person Mommy calls is Susan. I hear Mommy ask her, “are you ready to start illustrating Grace’s newest adventure?”

It’s fun listening to Mommy talk with Susan about what she has in store for each book during the creative process.

It really takes a team to bring my stories to life and I’m so lucky Susan Lavalley is on my team. A fun fact about Susan is that she and her husband, Pete, own and operate Humble Bees Farm, a Local Missouri Beekeeping Farm.

Lovingly, Grace

My Favorite Illustrator, Susan with Pete!

Teamwork is Key

My mommy has an amazing team of people who help her publish my books. I think it’s time I start telling you about them.

Megan has been with us since the very beginning….she is the graphic designer who designs each book cover and places Susan Lavalley’s illustrations in the perfect place.

I want you to meet Megan and her sweet daughter, Julia. They recently placed my books in their neighborhood little library so others can share in my life lessons. I like to tell people how simple acts of kindness can change people’s lives.

I’m so grateful that Megan and Julia are on my team! Lovingly, Grace

Megan is our layout designer…she’s special.

NYC Big Book Award

Everybody Loves Grace: An Amazing True Story of How Grace Brings Love to Everyone She Meets was recognized with the NYC Big Book Awards Distinguished Favorite in the Children’s Motivational category.

I’m not sure why my books are so special, but I have a strong hunch it has to do with the wonderful illustrations drawn by Susan Lavalley and the wonderful people in my life.

This is exciting news just as Book 6, Everybody Loves Grace: A True Story of Grace’s Adventure to Washington, DC is coming off the printing press!

My goal in all my books is to convey the importance of simple acts of kindness. They make a difference and they change people’s lives.

Lovingly, Grace

Aging with Grace

I’m excited that Everybody Loves Grace Book 6 is about to be released. The printer is hard at work and the books are on the presses.

I thought I’d share a little bit about my new book. It offers insights into Aging with Grace. Through Mommy and me, lessons are discovered throughout the book about the importance of going at your own pace and knowing it’s okay to accept help from others. You’ll also learn there’s no place like home.

I hope you’ll order your copy of Book 6 now.

CLICK HERE FOR A LINK TO MY PRE-SALE!

Lovingly, Grace

Grace Looking Back at Jake

My Favorite Time of the Year

I don’t know about you, but Fall is my favorite time of the year. Especially this year. The temperature is cool in the morning and perfect in the afternoon which I really like after a really hot summer in Denver. In addition to the cooler temperature, the leaves are changing, and the colors are so vibrant this year. Tonight, when Mommy and me were walking, the leaves were yellow, orange, red, and almost purple.

I think it’s a combination of a lot of things but most of all, the leaves are prettier than I’ve seen in a long time.

Lovingly, Grace

My Favorite Time of the Year – Photo Credit Jes Kimak Photography