All I can say is WOW. What an amazing launch today next to Gnome Knoll at Floriade. It was a truly stunning afternoon; loads of sunshine and a light breeze. We were positioned right next to the little canal, underneath a willow three, and as yellow balloons bobbed around, I read Jumpy Roo to the assembled kids and adults--with lots of laughs and interaction from the kids.
The kids also have to hunt for the Riley gnome (above), painted by the wonderful Deb Wills. He was hidden in the surrounding garden and it was so great to see a little girl, Grace, find him. She won a copy of the book!
There was a wee man dressed as Riley, complete with aviator goggles (I so want them!) ...
... and I am still in awe of this incredible plane created just for the event. Thank you so so much, Rotary, for organising this. We'll soon be auctioning this plane and the Riley gnome for Rotary, so watch this space.
It was amazing to have so many friends in attendance--I even had my dear author pal Sheryl Gwyther all the way from Brisbane! Today was also the first launch where my son Riley signed books alongside me. It was very special.
|my fabulous Rotary team, setting up|
|kiddles 'signing in'|
|meeting the peeps, and selling books!|
|Ella, right, and her gorgeous friends Nicole and Claude|
|the lovely Ross and his intro|
|the amazing Genevieve Power|
|so many little Rileys at the launch--this one got an exclusive Roo cuddle|
|Queanbeyan Mayor Tim Overall dropped by to say hi!|
|this little girl was such a shining light|
|I was quite obsessed with her! I told her I was sure she could hop higher than Roo|
It was so fabulous to meet people I've only known by the internet, including Instagram and Facebook. So many adorable kids, too.
|here I am with Sheryl Gwyther; she was leaving and I am clinging; I made her stay longer!|
Here I am (above and below) with the amazing Chelsea Boulding who recently launched her first picture book - There's a Hippopotamus in the Sink - during Book Week. It was such a delight to see her and her gorgeous family at the launch!
And here are my beautiful babies - Ella and Riley.
After the book signing, people headed over the Gnome Knoll to paint their own gnomes (for Rotary), including my kids. I also got some quick Floriade pics in (more later this month) and had a book signed by Sheryl!
My biggest thanks to the amazing Genevieve Power, Gnome Mistress, for asking me to launch at Floriade, and for organising and incredible team of helpers - especially the astonishing Natalie Jupe and Kristin Ballard who were so fantastic and lent so much support. Thanks to Joan and Trent and Ross and Curtis and the other wonderful helpers for blowing up balloons and decorating and giving up so much of their time and expertise today.
I also want to thank my darling friend Sylvia @creative_chicky who took these superb photos. Only regret is that we didn't get a pic together! (love the selfie, Sylv). I think you'll agree she took some amazing shots!
My husband has just brought me a glass of Andrew Garret sparkling burgundy. I'm off to toast a wonderful launch and the gorgeous people who shared it with me. Here's to books and events that celebrate them!