Living with Grace Blog

What’s new with Katy and Grace!

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

Improve Kid-Lit by Reading with a Dog

Did you know that children’s literacy can be enhanced by reading with a dog? Research shows that the presence of a dog improves a child’s interest in reading and improves their willingness to work through a reading challenge.

“The findings showed that children spent significantly more time reading and showed more persistence when a dog — regardless of breed or age — was in the room as opposed to when they read without them,” says Rousseau. “In addition, the children reported feeling more interested and more competent.”

I think Grace was on to something when we started the Everybody Loves Grace series. Not only do children love to read about dogs, they love to be with a dog when they are reading.

With Love, Katy and Grace

Photo Credit: Kylie Keegan

Good Morning Sunshine

This morning was very special. I got to meet with two of Denver’s finest….they are always hard at work and I was happy they stopped to say good morning to me. Of course, I looked straight into their eyes and into their hearts.

Lovingly, Grace

Good morning sunshines!

Believe in Dog Podcast

I had the pleasure of being a guest on the Believe in Dog Podcast hosted by the beautiful and caring Erin Scott. The Believe in Dog Podcast shares stories about the love of dogs changing our lives and changing the world. “I believe a dog can be a healer, a teacher and an inspiration.” – Erin Scott

In case you were wondering, Grace was right by my side throughout the entire podcast interview.

CLICK HERE TO LISTEN TO THE SHOW!

Take Care, Katy and Grace

Mommy is Traveling

My mommy is traveling which means I get to stay home by myself. Well, not really by myself because Mommy always makes sure I have someone special to stay with.

Did I tell you Mommy is starting to speak about leadership topics? She used to speak about leadership when she was working at the CIA and she decided to start doing it again. Something about humble leadership and living life with purpose, courage, and faith.

This is kind of a long trip that Mommy’s on, so I get to spend this weekend with a special friend, Jaida. I am so happy to walk and spend time with her.

Lovingly, Grace

Jaida and me
Heading home after the playground

There’s No Place Like Home

I had a lot of fun in Santa Fe, NM and I was also happy to come home. While I love being on the road, I also love sleeping next to Mommy’s bed at night and the familiar routine I have at home. You’ll get to read more about this in Book 6.

I also love it when I run into my friends in the neighborhood. Today on my way to do “my rounds” at Denver Health, I ran into my long-time friend Tobee Mac. I realized that we’ve been friends for over ten years!

I talked about friends in Book 3, my adventure to Texas. Good friends are friends forever even if we don’t see each other often. I really had fun walking with Tobee Mac this morning.

Lovingly,

Grace

Tobee Mac and Grace

I’m Back in Santa Fe, New Mexico

Mommy and I haven’t been on a road trip in a while so I asked Mommy if we could go back to Santa Fe, New Mexico.  I thought it was a good idea because the drive is only six hours and I wanted to explore the great sniffs I talked about in Book 2.

It’s been fun being here and I remember so many of the sniffs.  The other day, we walked around the Santa Fe Courthouse and sat under a tree and enjoyed the breeze.  While we were there, I got to meet a special woman named Ida who is 91 years old.  She was so happy to spend time with me!

Then the other night, Mommy asked if I wanted to lead our walk.  I took Mommy along the Santa Fe River, around the Santa Fe Plaza and by the Loretto Chapel and Cathedral of Basilica of St. Francis of Assisi.  I remembered what fun we had when I visited last year.

Mommy and I walked for a long time and came across a music festival going on in the town square.  We sat under a tree and listened to a woman sing beautiful songs while she played her guitar. There was a young boy from Texas listening to the music and he stopped to pet me. He couldn’t believe my breed, Finnish Lapphund, herds reindeer!

I wish you could be here with me.  It’s been fun to be on the road again.

Lovingly, Grace

Enjoying the Santa Fe River

Get The Adorable new Grace Plush Dog Free!

Get The Adorable new Grace Plush Dog Free!

The super-soft and cuddly Grace plush is available for free with the purchase of the 5-book series for a limited time.

We often receive feedback that the Everybody Loves Grace books bring adults and children together in conversation. “Katy, it’s such a great way to connect with my grandkids. We have fun talking about all the places of adventure and the emotions that come up with the life lessons presented in the books.”

Now you can add the super cuddly Grace plush to your reading time. The 5-book series with plush is $49.95 plus shipping.

With Love, Katy and Grace


Get Your Grace Plush Dog Now!

Grace is the heart of each book in the Everybody Loves Grace series. You can now have your very own Grace as a super-soft, cuddly, plush toy with soft black fur, brown eyes, little black nose, and her trademark tan eyebrows and red heart collar!

Just one word of warning. The new Grace plush is snuggly and soft just like the real Grace. Once you start holding her, you may never let go!

Thank you to our friends who have patiently waited for the Grace plush to become available. We are super excited to have them available for purchase. Don’t miss our special promotion with free shipping now through August 15, 2021.

Living with Grace:

Mommy and I started a new project and I want to tell you a little bit about it. With the help of some friends, we created an enrichment program for seniors, it’s called Living with Grace.

We tested out our new program at two senior assisted living facilities and it was well received. I think I had as much fun as the people who were there with us. Mommy read Everybody Loves Grace Book One while I visited with the people who attended. I heard Mommy ask questions that really got people talking. The fun and lively discussions involved people talking about dogs they grew up with or the farms where they lived, and what life is like living in a senior community.

I think it’s amazing that my stories have as much of an impact on seniors as they do children. I hope you’ll stay tuned for more details about our new program.

Lovingly, Grace

Grace Inspires Children

Everybody Loves Grace and Everybody Loves Coco. The Everybody Loves Grace series inspired young writer, Vidya Malgari, to write a book about her dog, Coco, after reading Grace’s stories.

Vidya’s book, Everybody Loves Coco, is a sweet and endearing story about Coco. The reader learns about Coco’s arrival with her new family and about her adventures to Massachusetts, West Virginia and in Northern Virginia.

I’ve always said that my goal with the Everybody Loves Grace series is to inspire children and give them courage to go through life’s changes knowing things will work out well. It’s wonderful to know that Grace’s stories are inspiring young writers too.

I was grateful to meet Vidya, along with her Mom and siblings, Anya and Ravi, neighbor Joy and of course, Coco. Thank you Vidya for your beautiful book.

With Love, Katy

Shaping the Library Industry

Grace’s Adventure to Pennsylvania was recently featured along with other Nautilus Award winners in the American Library Association’s 2021 Conference. The Conference brings together bestselling authors; experts; political luminaries; and thought-leaders and influencers in the library field from around the world. 

This year’s guest speakers included President Barack Obama and Amanda Gorman. Important updates were shared, relevant legislation and policy were addressed that majorly impact libraries and their ongoing transformation.

The library industry is changing and we are grateful to be a part of it in our small way.

Lovingly, Katy and Grace

An Author Interview with Feathered Quill

I never get tired of talking (or writing) about Grace and her stories. Especially because she continues to inspire me and the people we meet on our daily walks.

I want to share with you my recent interview with Holly Connors of the Feathered Quill. The interview brought up some sweet stories and reminders of Grace and her journey to Denver and meeting her big brother, Tinto.

https://featheredquill.com/author-interview-katy-mcquaid/

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What is the Nautilus Award?

In case you are interested, The Nautilus Awards represent “Better Books for a Better World.”

Now in its 20th year, this international book award program honors, awards and promotes print books that inspire and connect our lives as individuals, communities and global citizens.

The Nautilus Awards recognize, “well-written and -produced books with messages about caring for, understanding, and improving every aspect of our lives and relationships….responsible leadership and positive social change as well as to the worlds of art, creativity and inspirational reading for children, teens and young adults.”

Everybody Loves Grace, Books 1 and 5, were awarded the Nautilus Silver for Children’s Illustrated Fiction. I say it’s all because of Grace, Amazing Grace. We are honored to be in company with some incredible authors whose books have made a “Better World.”

With Gratitude, Katy

Our Most Recent Nautilus Award – April 2021