The Itsy Bitsy Spider: The Legend Behind the Myth

Available at:


Barnes and Noble

Etsy (for signed copies)

…and the Itsy Bitsy Spider went up the spout again.” But WHY?? Everyone knows the rhyme, but no one knows the real reason behind that infamous climb. Are you ready to learn the truth?

So there I was, humming along to myself, er, I mean, singing the Itsy Bitsy Spider to my toddler…

Anyway I got to the end of a perfectly innocent run-through of those famous lyrics when I realized something. This spider is totally nuts. He’s just been washed all the way down a water spout, which must be absolutely harrowing, not to mention dangerous and depressing if his goal was to ever reach the top. But there he goes, right back up again before the last drops are even dry. I don’t know whether to pity or admire the gutsy arachnid.

Another thought occurred to me during that nursery rhyme deconstruction session.  I surely mustn’t be the only one who has ever wondered. The people deserve to know. So I inquired of the IBS himself, and he enthusiastically dictated his side of the story, and hired me to illustrate his explanation.  I am happy to announce that the mystery is now solved and immortalized for the enlightenment of future generations. No more will we judge harshly or jump to inaccurate conclusions about the little guy’s motives.

This interactive and humorous story is available in paperback and in hardcover by request.

I also offer discounts to schools and wholesalers, If you are interested you may email me at [email protected].  A wonderfully unique gift idea is to give the book (or any of my books) as a set with a necklace, bracelet, original framed miniature painting, or key chain hand-painted by me, the illustrator. See my work at my Etsy shop, SkipperBay

Illustration Contest- Discovery

This is one of my favorite illustrations, and I thought it fit very well into the theme of “Discovery” for Susanna Hill’s illustration contest.

That’s it.  I know, super long post. Truth is, I have like a bazillion commissions to get to (ok, only 2 this week, but still, it’s summer fun time) and I used up my creativity brain cells for the moment finishing up my last entry.

Illustrators, enter here until this Friday!

Also, if you like this or any of my work, please like me on

What do you think this story is about?

*Sorry for taking my time in approving your posts, I get a lot of spam. But I’ll try to be more on top of approving posts, and thank you so much for your participation and comments!  To make up for my lapse, I (think I) replied to everyone! Anyway…

I have had this picture in my head for a while now, but haven’t quite worked out the story that goes with it.  I have a few ideas jumping around my head, trying to make it big, but nothing’s standing out yet.  Luckily, I found an illustration contest that spurred me on and gave me the perfect excuse to get these guys out on paper.  Those of you who have been to my Etsy shop might recognize all three of these characters (and the tentacle in the background), who started out as miniature wearable art pendants, still available here: and the town is inspired by the UNESCO World Heritage site of Valparaiso, Chile- a fascinating and enchanting place to visit if you’re ever near!

Also, like Skipper Books on Facebook:

What does it look like this story is about to you?

Say Hola to the Spanish Bilingual Version!

For language learning, in general, I’m a fan of the immersion method, which means no English. Even if you are communicating in mostly gestures and pictures, I feel like it’s a great way to start thinking right away in the acquired language, and not be constantly translating in your head.

However, I’m also a lover of all things grammar, syntax, and semantics-related, and I do love me a good side-by-side comparison.  Translation is an entirely different skill from learned-language communication, reading, or writing, so every method has its merit.

This, like the Chinese and Russian bilingual versions before it, is a side-by-side Spanish and English picture book, wonderful for a bilingual child, or anyone who wants to learn more grammar or even just a few words. There is a vocabulary list in the back, and the English right next to the Spanish makes it feel less intimidating to jump right in and try.  The repetition in the story line helps in memorization of new words or grammatical patterns, and children love being able to predict some of what will happen next. As an adult, I know I appreciate simple language when trying to learn a new one.

El Oso, la Caja y el Niño / The Bear, the Box and the Boy is available on Amazon here (, or you can contact me through my Etsy shop, for a signed copy (soon to be listed in the store)

Schools may order this or any of my English or Bilingual books at a discount, please email me at [email protected]

As always, feel free to contact me at with any other questions or for larger orders.

Медвежонок, Коробка и Мальчик (the Bear book in Russian) available now!

That’s about it, no fancy posting here, just the awesome fact that the Russian Bilingual version of The Bear, the Box and the Boy (Медвежонок, Коробка и Мальчик) is available for purchase and study!  The book includes Russian and English side-by-side text, as well as a Russian pronunciation guide and vocab list in the back of the book.  Check it out on Amazon here!

Introducing: The Girl Who Knew She Was a Princess

Available at:


Barnes and Nobel

Etsy (for signed copies) (Hardcover)

This little girl just knows she’s a princess. She’s excited to prove her royal status to the world, and to herself. Along her path to the castle, she discovers what it means to be a princess and that she, like every little girl, has been a true princess all along.

I wrote this story with my 2-year-old daughter and 4-year-old niece in mind, and I think girls up to age 8 would enjoy the rhyming story. It flowed out of my fingertips one Sunday afternoon when the idea struck.  I only had a few minor word changes to help with the flow of the verse when I looked at it later, and I’ve found that my best work usually comes out the quickest!

Nearly all little girls love to dress up in beautiful dresses and give orders to their loyal plush servants, but what I want for my girls most is that they understand that they are already real, true princesses.  This book is unique among the princess genre in that it provides inspiration by combining the popular subject matter with a message of encouragement for girls to be who they are.  They don’t have to settle for society’s definition of what a princess is.  Instead of fancy dresses, servants and attention from princes, a true princess focuses on inner beauty, service, and individual worth.

This book has a mild, non-denominational religious overtone, as it implies that all little girls are princesses because they are daughters of the King.  It is not preachy or in-your-face, but funny and uplifting.

I hope you and your little girls enjoy the rhyme, as well as the search for the five animal friends who make an appearance somewhere in most of the illustrations.

The paper doll cut-out section in the back provides a two-in-one gift, and a fun guardian/child project.

If you have purchased the book and need replacement doll pages (a complimentary PDF file), please email [email protected]Schools and Wholesalers: I offer discounts for bulk or educational orders. Email me, [email protected]

Thank you!

熊,箱子,和男孩 (Xióng, Xiāngzi, hé Nánhái): The bilingual Chinese version is here!

Get the Chinese Bilingual Version here!

Learn Chinese! 

Well OK, maybe you’ll need at least a few basics before you delve right in.  So learn Chinese a little bit, and then use this book for practice and vocabulary.  Who knows, maybe you’ve got a knack for languages and will be translating court cases after you master the bear’s adventures.  Maybe you’re a Chinese immigrant or visitor who would like your children to retain their language skills.  Or maybe you think it’s fun to look at funny-looking scratch marks and read the pinyin.  Whatever your motivation, I hope you will enjoy the new Chinese-English bilingual edition of The Bear, the Box and the Boy, available now!

This edition features a short glossary/vocab list, and the English pronunciation (pinyin) beside the Chinese characters.

Thank you to Kasey in China for the wonderful translation, native-speaking editors and assistants, and incredible turn-around time!

Spanish and Russian bilingual editions are also in the works!

Introducing: The Bear, the Box and the Boy


Barnes and Nobel: ENGLISH  |  SPANISH  |  RUSSIAN  | CHINESE

Etsy (for signed copies): ENGLISH  |  SPANISH  |  RUSSIAN  | CHINESE

Lulu (hardcover, English only)

The bear and the boy played all day long until they fell asleep inside their box. When the bear woke up, the boy was gone. Follow the bear as he travels through the boy’s imagination in their magic box. In his search for the boy, the bear learns to follow his heart.

 The Bear, the Box and the Boy is version 627.5-E of the ever-evolving bedtime story I have been telling my son, from the age of about 2 years old to the present time.  He loves his bedtime stories, especially the ones where he gets to travel to far-off and adventuresome lands.  He has to have his stuffed animals, which he calls “friends,” come along, and snuggles with them when they all return to the bed safe and sound for the night.

Schools and Wholesalers: I offer discounts for bulk or educational orders. Email me, [email protected]

Enjoy, and thank you for your interest in Skipper Books!