As a parent, how do you explain to your child a job that takes you away for long hours at a time? Lisa Yu, Newtown Mom of 2 is hoping to help make that question a bit easier to answer with the launch of The My Parent’s Job book series. As a wife to a career firefighter, Lisa noticed how difficult it was to explain her husband’s job to their young son. This is what sparked the idea for this book series for this former elementary school teacher.
Where are you originally from and how long have you lived in Newtown?
I grew up in Maine and came to Connecticut for college. I met my husband and decided to stay. We lived in Trumbull before moving to Newtown, we’ve now been here for 3 years.
Child(ren) and ages?
My son just turned 3 and my daughter is almost 8 months.
One thing people would be surprised to know about you?
It may be more apparent now that the books have been released, and they rhyme, but I like to make up freestyles and I do it about anything. These days I make up raps so my son will clean up, eat food, brush his teeth, you name it-I probably could freestyle about it.
Favorite things to do with your kids?
It may sound old fashioned, but I truly just love being outside in the fresh air watching my son run around without a care in the world. It’s free, good for them, and I love watching his imagination take over.
Favorite Spot in our area?
Oh boy, this is a hard one with all the great new additions we’ve had. Can I pick two? We love Everwonder, there’s so much creativity and hands-on activities happening, the exhibits are always expanding and changing. The story times and special events are wonderfully put together and immensely beneficial for little minds. If we need to just run around and get out some pent up energy, we love Main St. Adventures. It’s one of the only play areas with such a big space for the babies while the older kids use the playscape. My son absolutely loves it.
What is your proudest mommy moment?
The toddler stage is hard. I would say I am most proud when my son helps others or does something independently for himself that he has been struggling with. It’s hard to watch them grow up and need us less, but it’s amazing to know we helped them achieve it. With my daughter it’s just being able to see all her milestones. I was working when my son was her age so I am reveling in her daily changes. I am hopeful her first word will be mommy!
I know that your husband’s job helped drive the initial idea behind the series. What else helped push you to create these stories? What’s next after My Daddy (Mommy) is a Firefighter & My Daddy (Mommy) is a Police Officer?
Honestly, writing a children’s book has always been on my to-do list. It goes back a good decade of me writing stories and sitting on them. A huge part of it finally happening was becoming a full-time mom. I had time to breathe and think about what I still wanted to achieve. When I was an Elementary school teacher my fondest memories were reading to my students. The simple joy, excitement, the ah-ha moments, and getting lost in a book! It wasn’t until I had the strong emotional connection and saw the need for these types of stories to be told, that I finally dug in and put in the work. I had been waiting for the moment I would feel like, yes, this is the story I want to tell! Now that I found it there’s no turning back. What’s next? That’s the million dollar question. I have multiple manuscripts completed and I am trying to release books of jobs in a similar theme. I guess people will have to stay tuned to see what I’m up to next!
You also mentioned how you are self-publishing this series. Can you tell us what that process is like and offer up any advice to those who are interested in writing a book?
The process is long! There is a lot of back and forth to make sure you are getting a product you’re happy with and it’s true to your vision. My advice is just that, so people can feel free to take it with a grain of salt! There is a lot more to it than people think, so just be sure to do your research to understand all the steps to take, industry standards, and the market. Do not rush it, it takes time, but it can be done! Just start writing!
So finally, how can someone get their hands on your new book? Do you have any upcoming events?
That’s a great question! I have my own website www.myparentsjob.com where people can purchase books directly from me. It also explains our message further and opportunities to collaborate with schools and organizations. I would love to have people check it out. We do have a few wonderful events coming up (you can also find more information about these events on our website). First Responder Appreciation Morning at Main Street.Adventures in Newtown is scheduled for June 15th from 9:30am-12:00pm. Children of First Responders will get a discount and local business will have some goodies and discounts as well. We will also be at the New England Chiefs Show at Foxwoods June 21-22nd. We are currently in the planning stages of an event at the C.H. Booth library in Newtown.
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