Chasing Vermeer

Blue Balliett and illustrator Brett Helquist created a world that the reader can






right in and immediately feel a part of the story. The story itself provides a lot of information in such a way as to interest and delight the audience, as we are pulled in and caught up in the storyline.

This book includes action, intrigue, math, and art all mixed together with a big dose of burgeoning friendship and suspicion.

I give this book 5 out of 5 dragons. Blue Balliet – I salute you! Brett Helquist…I need some dragons drawn…:D


I’m not usually one to get into the creative art of painting canvases. I bead, crochet, and write…but my talent is sadly lacking when it comes to canvases and really, my mother has an art degree so I normally leave it in her more than capable hands. She’s amazingly talented! However, on a trip to one of our favorite crafting stores last week, I saw several canvases sporting cute designs and some of my favorite literary quotes.

Since I’m cheap (ok, I’m poor!) I decided to buy a set of small canvases and try my hand at cutesy quotes. A week later, I finally got out the paints and here is what happened:


 The Base Coats…


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Rainbow of Gold



Brian Bendis captures the heart and imagination of comic lovers and budding writers/artists with his revealing memories and almost self-depricating humor. Sprinkled throughout the book are helpful how-to moments, interesting business notes, and even the acknowledgement that the work is difficult and poor…something a lot of ‘big name’ artists wouldn’t admit. Each nugget of golden insight comes with an array of his artwork, so that the rainbow of comic colors becomes the gold that we look for at the end.

I will be using this text in my 5th grade writing course to show students that hard work and a love of the art can get you further than anything else. Who knows…this text may be the catapult someone needs to become the next great comic book artist, writer, or main stream author.

I give Brian Bendis’ book Words for Pictures 5 out of 5 Dragons!


Desolation of Thoughts

Desolation of Thoughts

The park that my daughter and I like to play at is full of little hidden places. Old play areas and paths that have since been left to slowly descend into that slightly creepy and yet completely beautiful glimpse of history.
There are times that I feel my brain is one of those abandoned areas. A plain old metal frame that is being covered and bent by the vines of disuse as I go about the rest of my life. Yet sometimes, usually when I’m right in the middle of something completely mundane, a beautiful bloom or brightly colored animal peeks at me and reminds me of the real purpose behind that ancient frame.
Now if I would only remember to carry a tape recorder in the car again!


Have you ever wished that you knew how to do that one certain thing? Perhaps you always wanted to learn to skateboard, or to do a back handspring, or to turn junk shop finds into high end treasures.

For me it has always been the desire to learn how to draw. I can copy fairly rudimentary patterns with a small amount of success, but to draw my own illustrations…that’s a dream that I just can’t seem to realize.

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(actual paintings created by me: Elizabeth S Tyree)

My illustrator is my mother, and she is an honest to goodness artist. The woman can paint, draw, or sew just about anything you ask her to, as long as she can visualize the outcome. If I do my job correctly, she can visualize and draw out my characters EXACTLY how I see them. Of course, without a writer’s words paving the way, you may never know about the purple and orange aliens that reside on the small planetary body of R1392Q12. That’s where I come in.

You see, the inhabitants of Planetary Body R1392Q12—which they refer to as Glorph – are a peculiar race.

With heads and long necks similar to those of our giraffes, a body that resembles the size and stature of a large horse, and eyes positioned in their nostrils, Glorphians can be told apart mainly by the number of spots on their back legs, and the color of their tongues. The spots on their back legs often include lines of runes, these lines denote their family titles and are tattooed on in lime green by Glorphites (a race of mole-like mammals that live as a lower class society to the Glorphians and use their own quills to tattoo the upper class). Tongue colors, which are natural and change from the birth color at about 6 weeks, denote their job types and can range throughout the rainbow and include neon pink for school teachers, burgundy for butchers, and black for their politicians.

The language spoken, and written, by all of the residents of Glorph is a softly guttural range of clicks, clacks, grunts, and whistles. The runes used to write this language closely resemble plantlife, the curving lines almost surprising coming from brushes of sweet grass held in the Glorphians mouths and dipped in dampened, crushed stones of various colors.

Their planet is made of gray and deep green, but the stones that are mined provide all colors for artwork and reading materials. Buildings are tall versions of the old cliff homes in our own state of Colorado.

Without this information, the artist may not be able to visualize the subject. So I do my part and paint a mental picture. Maybe that is a form of drawing, maybe I provide the image and inspiration for artists…OR…maybe I’m just a dreamer. Yeah, that’s probably it. Both those Glorphians are really nice guys!

Wrecked Wednesday

There have been numerous times in my now 29 years (my birthday was a few days ago and I’m still not sure that I’m this old. I mean, honestly, wasn’t I 22 a few months ago? Anyway, not important…back on track now…numerous times…) that I have made mistakes and wanted to rip up the page, tear out the row of stitches, or scream in frustration when I couldn’t.

People look at you oddly when you do things like that. You get asked questions like, ‘are you ok’, ‘are you sure its wrong? it looks fine to me,’ and other such banality that generally only serves to make things worse in my head. But what if it was not only allowable, but condoned. What if you were told that instead of trying to be perfect right out of the gate, you should just draw a square stick figure and then tear it up? Well guess what, you can!

Several people have started with the ‘Zentangles’ or flash writing times (anywhere from 5-15 minutes of stream of consciousness writing to get your juices flowing). Think these aren’t for you? Need a little help getting started with something else? Check out the “Wreck this” Series by author and artist Keri Smith (here is a link to her site

This series is fun, interesting, and just a little zany…pretty much how I like things!


Dragon in My Yard

Dragon in My Yard

The second book in Elizabeth S. Tyree’s Stone Dragon Saga, we follow Aliphonsore and his new friends in their search for his statue family.  Meanwhile, the crazy fairy queen has also been awakened, and is already sending out searches of her own.

Don’t miss out on any of the action! Get  your copies of this series today!