Explaining my First Painting of Paris | An American in Paris 2016

I made this video explaining the scene of my First Paris painting…

Over the holiday I got to read the coolest book on Paris!

An incredible historic tome of only 792 pages I think of which I managed to power through close to 550 of … and so my trip all came back to me!

I truly feel like an artist! An artist who paints the artists of Paris!

Le Flâneur: A Modern Day Hippie’s Guidebook to Wandering Around Paris or When you go to Paris – which title do you like best?

When you go to Paris


Le Flâneur: A Modern Day Hippie’s Guidebook to Wandering Around Paris

Le Flâneur

According to Fodor’s Parisian’s have a name for someone who wanders around strolling the city streets with no real destination in mind, Le Flâneur. Now truth be told, I almost always had a destination in mind when I wandered through Paris’ streets, I still spent most of my time mindlessly searching for children’s bookstores and to see as many Monet’s as I could find. But I am truly a hippie at heart I am sure and so I think this name fits best!

Which do you like better???

Also there are two layouts? My original idea when I started is to make it 4.5 x 6 and each painting is its original size one on a page like the layout in When you go to Parisbut that book is an irregular size limiting its ability to be sold in bookstores etc through create space. It actually doesn’t cost that much more to produce but a bit.


The second layout is a standard create space template and I guess I like it ok. More then I thought I would! Le Flaneur: A Modern Day Hippie’s Guidebook to Wandering Around Paris

Both books will have more text and actual lessons in the back that I learned but I just had to see what they look like… I have 94 paintings sketched out 4 to go to meet Monte Dolack’s challenge… but a couple I might redo or remove altogether and there are quite a few I want to paint I haven’t started. I actually took 1500 photos in Paris so I could probably be painting it for the rest of my life!!

Samples coming soon!

I can’t wait to get the samples from create space hopefully I can order them today!

Vote or comment below

Well, I’d love your thoughts! Provided I don’t add to many more pages I think both books would sell between $14.95 and $16.95…

Which one do you like best and what title do you like best? Send me an email or post in the comments!

A Modern Day Hippie’s Guide To Paris

When You Go To Paris

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com

Election Day and Jeannette Rankin


If you want to read my book about one of my biggest inspirations and heroines  Jeannette Rankin just click here.


Women in Congress

Watching the news this morning I am so inspired by all the women who were elected to Congress this morning. So it reminded me of the first woman ever elected to Congress in U.S. history back in 1916, from Montana Jeannette Rankin.


My favorite quote from her is “Wouldn’t it be a shame if we died knowing we didn’t do everything in our power to promote world peace?”

MSLAPeaceSign copy

I’m hoping Missoula is going to pull through for us and our Senator Jon Tester will remain our representative in Montana.

Go Blue #bluewave


I still want to do one about Denise Juneau who was our superintendent of schools here in Montana. What I was encouraged by was the high percentage of votes the women who won won by. high 60%s and 70% that is fantastic! I mean this girl a rockstar millennial I might add won by 78%! Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez 78%! Now that’s what I am talking about!

Record Number of Women ~ According to the Washington Post.

“There will be a record number of women in Congress next year. The House could have close to 100 women, most of them Democrats who decided to run for public office in response to Trump’s election. The new Democratic caucus will include the first Native American women, the first Muslim women and the youngest woman, who is also Latina, ever elected to Congress.”

USA Today has a nice list of these new candidates.

Are there any candidates you would like to read a children’s book about? I love to create biographies.

Paris comes to life

I love adding illustrations to my Paris memory book! Each one brings back tons of memories I can remember each day as clear as if it was yesterday.

Landing in Paris

Getting ready to explore

Leaving my apartment

The first of many flower boxes

Lost my first twenty minutes out

My first views of Paris

My neighborhood

The flowerman by my apartment

La Place du tetre

Do u like seeing my paintings in different stages as they unfold? It’s fun for me to see the changes.

Follow me on Facebook to see videos like this!

So here are some videos of my work I posted on Facebook this summer.


I thought I should share them here. This video starts out talking about my avatar which I have been thinking about a lot.

I’ve decided she just turned 9 so leaving third grade going into fourth, loves learning, learning anything, reading, writing, science, music, games, you name it, she loves it! She always has a backpack with a book, a journal or sketchbook, some markers or colored pencils and usually has a dog at her feet.

But you can also see my christmas card I made that shows my journey over the Continental Divide which I made over 400 times. If you follow me on Facebook you could probably see some videos of those hairy drives as well.

I think there are also paintings at the end of my Sunflakes paintings. I feel like that book is taking forever! But I also love to look at the paintings every time I take them out.

Here’s a book Mike and I are working on called a Parade of Elephants.

and last but not least the Green Queen!

now that’s a trip down memory lane!

Thanks for visiting!

Levi Bear Goes To School Kickstarter Campaign Launched

East Glacier School

You can help get this project off the ground by supporting my kickstarter campaign here!

Here’s the storyline:

Levi bear lived in Glacier National Park in Montana with his mother and siblings. Levi bear was just like any other bear.

Bear Grass Notecard
He picked huckleberries with his mom on the mountainside.

Levi Bear Picks Hucks
He swam in the lake on the hot summer days.


He wrestled with his brother and sister.

IMG_0037.jpgBut Levi bear wanted to go to school. Everyday he watched the little boys and girls ride the bus into the little town and he would see them play in the playground. Sometimes he would even sneak down and peak in the classrooms.


The little boys and girls always looked like they were having so much fun!

IMG_2966He wanted to play in the sand table and write on the big white boards with the magic markers that erased away with the soft black blocks.

He wanted to press the buttons on the little tablets and laugh like the boys would all in a group playing a game.


He wanted to sit at the computer and play the math games.

He wanted to stand up in a line and do the alphabet chant, complete a puzzle on the carpet with a friend and paint at the easel with red, yellow and brown!

On March 8th, the students from the East Glacier school went on a field trip to the Park to go snow-shoeing with the Rangers from the Park Service. The bears watched from the woods, peaking out behind the trees as the boys and girls ran around with the big rackets attached to their feet, learning about habitats, and animal tracks. They laughed and built snowmen, they tripped and fell over the big feet, and they ran around while they learned about the forest.


When the boys and girls left the bears explored the playground the kids had enjoyed! Levi’s sister Rachel found a small red glove lying in the snow.

“We must return it,” Levi said.

That night when there was a full moon out, Levi woke his sister and brother up. He whispered to them with his hand over his lips to follow him. When he told him his plan they said yeah lets get our friends. So they went to Levi’s sisters best friends cave and snuck her out and to his brother’s friends den and dug him out and together the six friends went to the school. When they got to the gate they were a little scared.


Sunshine, Levi’s sister’s friend said, “I’m not scared.” but she went and sat on the swing and started to pump her legs.


Soon they were all playing on the playground, climbing on the monkey bars, swooshing down the slide and bouncing up and down on the teeter- totter.

East Glacier Bear school bears on slide

When they had laughed and played so hard they couldn’t breathe Levi snuck over to the window and peaked in the window. Soon all the bears were lined up along the window sill. Just then one of the windows swung open.

The bears climbed in the classroom slowly one at a time.


Summer and Levi’s sister Chelsea ran to the science table and started to play with the magnet set and examine the plants with the magnifying glass.

Levi and Robert bear went to the books and started turning pages. They couldn’t believe all the things they saw! Pigs flying in the air, dinosaurs hugging their human moms and dads, flowers growing out of peoples heads, small pirates in boats riding over giant waves! It was exciting! Levis brother and friend had built a giant block tower. Then suddenly it cam crashing down in a loud crash!!

The bears all jumped but then they all laughed. They laughed so hard they all fell over on the floor and Levi bear read them all a book. Then he pretended to be the teacher and pointed to all the numbers on the calendar. He went through the weather report and had them clap and count to 100 like he saw the boys and girls do during the day.

Soon the sun started to peak over the horizon. The bears thought we better get out of here! Rachel gently put the glove on a student’s desk.

They looked around the classroom one more time, and climbed out the window. Levi put an apple on the teachers desk before he crawled out behind the others. The bears quickly snuck back to their homes before either parents got up and crawled into their lairs falling fast asleep for the winter.

When the teacher and children came to school that day they scratched their heads as they looked around the room in wonder.





Picture Book Summit – Creating the Storyboard

Here’s where I started the storybook back in 2016. I would love to finish this project this summer. Of course everything in it’s own time. I just came up with the Montana Bear School video idea last year when I was teaching!



You can help get this project off the ground by supporting my kickstarter campaign here!


Why Montana Bear School? | Learn to Read | Common Core Standards Love

How many people have asked me this these last few days. Why Montana Bear School? What is Montana Bear School?

Here’s what it says on my why page:

Teaching Experience


I have worked as a teacher in numerous classrooms from pre-k at Head Start through 2nd grade in the elementary schools over the last 10 years. I’ve taught over 500 students since 2003. My favorite part of teaching is watching a student have an ahah moment when all of a sudden they master a skill that they have been struggling with whether it’s writing their name, counting change, or reading a script in a play the delight in a child’s eyes when they learn something new is exhilarating! 

My Elementary Education

When I went back to school I thought it should be fun! My elementary teachers were amazing and school was delightful! My third grade teacher Mrs. Chaplin taught me how to do puppets. Mrs. Tiernan who I had for both 1st and 2nd amazed me when she would play the piano and we would sing or play the recorder! I loved everything from reading and writing to kickball! I can still practically remember our bus route!

Montana Bear School

Montana Bear School is a combination response to the questions parents have asked me over the years about what they could do to help their child succeed in school and things I want my students to know. I hope that by watching the videos students will say, I want to try and parents will do the activities at home with their child. 

Subscribe here to be notified when Bear School is ready!

Check out our youtube channel while you wait!


Lesson Plan Designs

One of my favorite parts of teaching is coming up with lesson plans. Having the common core standards to teach is a great way for me to make sure my students are gaining the skills they need to succeed in life in a logical order. It also allows me a certain freedom to develop lessons that I know will help my students understand the basics.


How to Love Math


I loved math all through my life and I’m sure this is because I have a strong foundation of quantities. I love to do problem solving, think about numbers in different combinations and working with objects to build understandings. I’m the kind of kid who could sit up until midnight figuring out a math problem cause I couldn’t sleep until I found the answer. I’ve played thousands of games of monopoly and yatzhee!

Awaken the Giant Within?

So yesterday as i was driving around Babb and yet again over the terrifying Logan’s Pass on Glacier’s Going-to-the-Sun road I was listening to Tony Robbins on


audible logo

I don’t understand why do i seem to be the only one practically hyperventilating? and I’m on the inside lane. I cld never drive over the edge side. Maybe in a low to the ground car.

If you don’t already know I’m terrified of heights so for the last 3 summers I’ve been taken the shuttle over the pass to build up my confidence. It hasn’t helped being way up high in my pickup although deep down i dream of being a jammer… or even a shuttle driver bc they’re more likely to talk to hikers…

And i do LOVE the old blue❤️pickup


Anyway while I’m driving Im listening to Tony Robbin’s audio book

Tony Robbins Awaken the Giant Within : How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny!

Awaken the Giant Within : How to Take Immediate Control of Your Mental, Emotional, Physical and Financial Destiny!

and he’s going on about reaching out for the biggest thing you can think of and all i can think is end war- make it obsolete.

My version of that looks something like this:

  • Healthy nutritious food and water are provided to all humans
  • All countries support the ICC (International Criminal Court – I mean we all get along in the US no ones worried NJ’s gonna attack Texas)
  • All people have access to a quality education starting in pre-school through college. College is free provided grades are kept to a B avg or above.

In the meantime I’ll work on what i can to help anyone who has access to the internet can learn to read and calculate! Today I came home and made another dozen videos for Montana Bear School and put together some of the pages. It’s a big project but it’s also lots of fun.




I have also been painting on my story Levi Bear about the little bear who want’s to go to the East Glacier School which is part of where this whole idea came from!East Glacier Park School

Back my kicktstarter campaign to bring Montana Bear School and the Book Levi Bear Goes to School to life! 

I am a participant in the Amazon Services LLC Associates Program, an affiliate advertising program designed to provide a means for sites to earn advertising fees by advertising and linking to amazon.com