I think I've been reading and writing forever. I typed my first book on a manual Smith Corona when I was in sixth grade. It was called, "A Little Bit of Me." The only copy has been missing for years. Maybe someone's waiting for just the right time to sell it on eBay.
I grew up in the Jenkintown/Abington suburb of Philadelphia, PA where my father, Hiram Gates Larmon, had a camera business. I graduated from Jenkintown High School, Elizabethtown College and later earned a master's degree in reading from Arcadia University.
For over twenty years, I taught elementary school, specifically first and fifth grades. It was during this time that I started imagining the characters in my first picture book, "Lasso Lou and Cowboy McCoy." (And no, they are not based upon former students...)
In 1998, my husband joined the United States Public Health Service, and we moved to Cape May Court House, NJ. I "retired" from my teaching job to be a full-time writer (along with wife and a mother of our four year old son, Gates).
In the fall of 2003, we were transferred to Cape Cod, MA. Some of my favorite things about Cape Cod were the Museum of Science in Boston, Plimouth Plantation, the Coast Guard Beach at the "elbow" of Cape Cod, Ice Cream Sandwich and Seafood Sam's which really does have the best lobster rolls ever.
Then in the summer of 2008, we drove across the country from Cape Cod to Prince Rupert, British Columbia. (Check out my cross-country trip blog: https://crosscountrycapecodders.blogspot.com) From there we boarded a ferry to Southeastern Alaska and our new home in Ketchikan, Alaska. We enjoyed the amazing adventure of living there for four years. Some travel highlights around the state included a ferry trip to Skagway, Sitka and Juneau where we saw the Mendenhall Glacier, a visit to Anchorage for the start of the Iditarod, and a train trip to Denali and on to Fairbanks.
In Ketchikan it rained A LOT. But I came to like the rain. I liked working at my computer in the study. The view out the window was of pine trees, mountains and the mist that floated through it all. In the fall, the mountains were snow-capped, and the Narrows was visible through the loft window.
Some of my favorite things about Ketchikan were the many hiking trails, diverse wildlife, the mountain peaks, Herring Cove (where sometimes the bears came to feed) and always fresh salmon. There was so much to do there including the Monthly Grind (a town talent show), theater productions and art events. Here is my life in Ketchikan blog: https://ketch-a-sketch.blogspot.com/
Then soon after Gates graduated from Ketchikan High School, we moved to our new home in Sonoma County, CA. We took the MV Columbia from Ketchikan to Bellingham, WA and then drove south seeing many sights along the way: Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helens, Crater Lake and the Redwoods. We rented a home on a dairy farm in tiny Valley Ford, CA (population 147). I never thought I'd say this, but the cows were adorable. They were as dynamic as an ocean or a rain forest. I never tired of our view over the pastured hillsides that surrounded our home.
Next we were off again to Bartlesville, OK where we were immersed in Native American and cowboy culture. I especially love the kind and gentleness of the Midwest. The only tricky part was the extreme heat in the summer. I won't let on how many eggs I could have fried on searing pavements during the five years we lived there.
My husband retired in 2018 and now we're off to NY and Ohio eager to explore both areas (when I'm not hard at work imagining characters and plots...).
I've also caught the travel bug. Here's where in the world I've been exploring: