Having a rough start to the day, Gail the Quail searches for her identity. Finding it easy to compare herself with the other birds, she sadly discovers what she is not. Despairing, Gail confronts the Maker.
The Maker responds, reassuring Gail that he has prepared an identity for her alone. He loves the "me" only she gets to be.
Encouraged Gail realizes that the Maker uniquely created her with skills of her own. She has learned the secret to being the "me" is walking in her Maker-given identity, and she is happy.
LeAnn Petterson is a keeper of the Treasure found among the jars of clay. Although not an archaeologist, LeAnn encouraged her public education students to discover the artifacts leading them to the path of truth. After retirement, she received a new assignment: LeAnn answered that still, small voice with the writing of her first book. She hopes all will be encouraged to be the "me" the Maker uniquely created only them to be.
Mary Kay Latzka can't remember a time when she didn't have a passion for drawing and being creative. While traveling through France, Mary Kay studied art and art history. She attained her art degree and taught in school for eighteen years. Mary Kay is the owner of the gallery, Gypsy and the Frog in Spooner, Wisconsin. She also works on commissioned portraits and does illustrations. Mary Kay frequently "gives back" to her local community by freely sharing her artistic talents.
Wisconsin's north woods offer abundant opportunities to enjoy creatures of many varieties. I can remember laughing as I watched a large family of turkeys in single file, walking as one swerving line, crisscrossing our property. I thought to myself that if I ever wrote a book, it would be about that family of turkeys. Well, the book's main character is about a quail, not a turkey. The idea of the book ruminated in the back of my mind for a while as a whimsy. Situationally, I found myself in waiting rooms for what seemed like endless hours. Needing a variety from knitting, playing Solitaire, and reading, I pulled out my phone and started writing some organizational thoughts for a book. The book, THE ME ONLY I GET TO BE, took about two years to reach publication. I am grateful to all who participated and supported me throughout that journey. As Gail the Quail discovered, it's very freeing to NOT worry about how we stack up in comparison with others, because we weren't created to be someone else. We may not look the same, may not have the same talents, or family as society's elite, but we each do have qualities unique to our own identity, that were fashioned for a specific purpose and destiny. The great news is, that each person has a Maker-given opportunity to be the "me" only they get to be. I would encourage each reader to move forward in his or her own Maker-given identity.
Not realizing it, the search of an illustrator for THE ME ONLY I GET TO BE actually began long before the book was even conceived. I met Mary Kay Latzka through my former teaching partner, Richard Meaux. Mary Kay not only volunteered her talents in his classroom, but throughout the school. While busily managing her own young children, and career, she volunteered for a variety of community involvement projects. Several of her contributions could be seen as backdrops for school concerts, proms, and murals in the school. In my opinion they were breath-taking. Mary Kay Latzka is an extremely talented artist.
The book came along a few years after, and more than a few miles farther from the Spooner school environment. While shopping, I encountered a former colleague. As we reminisced our Spooner days, the search for an illustrator was discussed. A combination of "more than coincidence" ocurred. If Mary Kay Latzka would even consider being the illustrator for the book, I would be so incredibly blessed. I guess you can tell the outcome of that encounter, THE ME ONLY I GET TO BE is illustrated by Mary Kay Latzka. So, Mary Kay Latzka, I want to publicly thank you for walking this journey with me. I believe the Maker made you to be the "me" that only you can be, and I couldn't have been the "me" without the "you." Thank you so incredibly much.