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Saving the World’s Fauna and Flora by Elaine a. Powers, Author

Image of dark blue mountains against lighted sky, with words for IUCNOnce a year I travel to an “exotic” location–not to play, but to work with the IUCN, the International Union for Conservation of Nature, for iguana conservation. The IUCN is a democratic union comprised of influential organizations, both governmental and public, and top conservation experts, in a combined effort to conserve nature and enable sustainable development. There are more than 1300 member organizations and more than 15,000 experts. These members make the IUCN the global authority on the status of the natural world and what is needed to protect it.

I am thrilled to be part of this organization and hope I contribute in my own small way to the important work they do. Their website:

Header for website CITESAnother important organization for the worldwide protection of wildlife is CITES, The Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species of Wild Fauna and Flora. CITES publishes a voluntary international agreement that provides a framework for the parties to adopt their own domestic national legislation. So far, 183 parties have joined together. More information is available at:

a white and light blue book cover with an image of an iguana's headThirty fun pages all about iguanas!

NOTE: Iguanas are among my very favorite animals because of their intelligence, strength, and when domesticated, their affection toward their caretakers. Their personalities are fascinating and unique, and sometimes I think they can read minds! To learn more about these amazing reptiles, please enjoy our comprehensive workbook and activity sheets, My Unit Study on Iguanas.

To see all of Lyric Power Publishing’s fun, educational workbooks, go to the Our Workbooks tab.

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Tails, Tales, Adventures, Oh, My!

A collage of 12 colorful children's book covers


Welcome to Lyric Power Publishing, where we believe children’s books should be educational and entertaining. Our illustrations are unusual in the children’s book marketplace: They are vivid—to attract the reader to both the written word and the fascinating world of science. Science is interesting and fun when presented in delightful rhymes or engaging adventures,  No dry text books here! But don’t think these stories are only for children. Our fan mail indicates adults enjoy them equally and have also gained new knowledge.

We may be a small publisher, but we have a mighty mission:  Science education should not be boring! To that end, in addition to our fun, science-based books in print, we have developed our own activity sheets and bundled them into 12 to 47-page study-units. Our affordable, printable activity sheets, workbooks, flannel-boards and standups for Grades K-5 provide creative and fun opportunities to learn about ecology, reptiles, birds, mammals, habitats, predators and prey, plants, rocks, maps and directions. They include coloring pages and lessons on anatomy, life-cycles, crossword puzzles, cut-and-paste, word searches, spelling, vocabulary, math, and story-writing, and more.

Wouldn’t your children rather count iguanas or bats than apples and oranges? Our workbooks can be viewed at the Workbooks tab and are downloaded to be printed and used as many times as you’d like.

We hope you will enjoy all there is to see on the Lyric Power Publishing website. You can meet our authors and illustrators under the Home tab and see our books at the Our Books tab.

Thank you for joining us as we discuss our work and our insights on this blog, Tails, Tales, Adventures, Oh, My! If you’d like to receive our updates in your email, use the subscription box in the right column of any page but the Home page. If you have any questions or comments, please contact us at

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It’s National Parents as Teachers Day and National STEM/STEAM Day

boy and mother with book on table about turtlesEveryone knows that parents are their child’s first teachers. From teaching them how to say mommy or daddy, to counting on their toes, to learning how to walk, parents are the most important teachers of children. As kids grow into adults, they still look to their parents for guidance. On November 8, we’re celebrating that relationship.

While parents are teaching their children, they should include science.  After all, November 8 is also National STEM/STEAM Day. Don’t know what those letters stand for? STEM stands for Science Technology Engineering Math. Education in these four areas is critical for the future. STEAM includes the equally important Arts, including humanities, language arts, dance, drama, music, visual arts, design and new media.

At Lyric Power Publishing, LLC, we encourage both kinds of learning, investigative and creative, and we like to make learning fun! Check out our books here and our workbooks here, and enjoy learning about science!

A light blue book cover with images of freshwater turtle and green sea turtle

38 Pages of Turtle Facts, Traits, Diet, Survival, Label the Parts, True or False, Cut and Paste, Reading Comprehension, Color by Math, Write the Differences, Vocabulary, Word Definitions, Cause and Effect and More!

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What Kind of Book Will Work Best? By Elaine A. Powers, Author

A flooding river takes Clarissa Catfish to the Peoria Riverfront Museum. She had thought exploring the Illinois River was exciting, but once she is taken inside the museum, the real adventure begins. Clarissa explores the exhibits and makes new friends–but will she escape the man who has dinner plans for her?

When I have a subject for a children’s book, the first thing I have to decide is what type of book it will be.  If the book is for students who have some ability to read on their own, I think an adventure tale is best.  This was the case for my Clarissa Catfish book above, which is set in the Peoria (IL) Riverfront Museum. Clarissa Catfish Visits the Peoria Riverfront Museum tells the story of Clarissa’s arrival at the museum, the friends she meets, and of the man who wants to eat her!  Clarissa escapes being cooked just by the “hairs of her chinny chin chin!” and it’s all very exciting.

The sequel takes place in the Peoria Playhouse Children’s Museum.  Most of the clients at this museum are of the preschool age, so an adventure story would be too advanced.  Thus, the sequel will be a picture book–with rhyming text, of course! I hope this book most conveys the incredible museum with its many fun activities.  I think they should have a grownups’ night. I want to play, too!

And while Lyric Power Publishing cannot yet boast of a workbook all about catfish, we DO have workbooks for K-2 and 2-5 filled with fun activity sheets on tortoises, turtles, iguanas, snakes, birds, bats, rats and rocks, just to name some of them. And we also have a Make Your Own 13-month Calendar with animals and a workbook with standup cutout figures and how to make a flannel board. There’s lot of fun science-based activities to explore at LPP. Thanks for stopping by and have some educational fun this summer!

green and yellow book cover with photos of animals from Cayman Brac

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Lyric Power Publishing is Proud to Announce a #1 Book at Amazon!

Lyric Power Publishing is pleased to be the publisher of Queen of the Night: The Night-Blooming Cereus by Elaine A. Powers and illustrated by Nicholas Thorpe. The Cereus blooms beautifully in the Sonoran Desert–but only one night each year! Author Elaine A. Powers explores the plant and the phenomena in RHYME in this book that is #1 in sales in Children’s Botany Books at The book is also available in Tucson, Az. at Tohono Chul Museum.

Congratulations to both Elaine and Nicholas!

a light brown book cover with green lettering: Queen of the Night: Night Blooming Cereus, with illustration of a white flower
A favorite in /southern Arizona where the Night-blooming cereus blooms one night per year

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A Tale of Friendship and the Red Woolen Coat

A color picture of a large pink flower with words, This is a Tale of FriendshipThis is a tale of friendship. . . . a wacky tale involving a writers’ group, a funeral, a red woolen coat, long black hair and a master seamstress–but friendship is the heart of the tale.

Once upon a time, not too long ago, a woman’s mother passed away. This woman had lived in Arizona for many years and did not own a coat that would keep her warm in the snow when she went home for the funeral.

The woman’s writing-friend said, “Here, take my long, red, woolen coat. It kept me warm in New Jersey. It will certainly work in Nevada.”

The woman gratefully accepted the red woolen coat and set off on her journey. When she stopped at her son’s house a few hours later, she hung the beautiful coat in the closet, where she left it.

Thus, when she arrived at the halfway point, she borrowed yet another beautiful coat, light gray and suede-like—which she had in her hands for less than two minutes before she spilled coffee on it. No one could believe it, least of all the woman with the former cup of coffee. She proceeded to wash the spot and due to either grace or magic, the spot disappeared. The woman gratefully wore the second coat to her mother’s funeral and somehow managed to return it spot free.

On the way back from Nevada, the woman forgot the red woolen coat in her son’s closet. A month or so later, he returned it to her and the woman noticed holes in the front of the right side of the coat. Holes cannot be washed away…

This left the woman with quite the dilemma. She could not afford to replace the red woolen coat and could not, anyway, as it was a treasure from years back in New Jersey.

This tale of friendship deepens. The woman shared her woeful story with the owner of the red woolen coat, who was dismayed at the sight of the holes, but was very gracious and tried hard not to make the woman feel bad. The owner of the coat suggested sewing a large button over the hole. The woman loved this idea, as she was feeling very badly and wanted the hole to go away just like the stain had.

The woman then asked her other writing-friend (who happens to be a master seamstress) if she would please go with her to find the right buttons and sew them on properly.  The master seamstress agreed–until she saw the hole.

“Oh, dear,” she said. “That will continue to unravel. It is going to have to be repaired before sewing buttons on.”

“Oh, dear,” the woman thought. “How can it possibly be repaired?”

The master seamstress realized the woman was beside herself and said, “I can repair it. But I need some strands of long, strong human hair.”

The woman wanted to cry. First, because her friend could repair the hole; and second, because she would have to find someone to give her some long, strong human hair.

So, what did the woman do? She called the young woman from whom she borrowed the gray, suede-like coat, the one she spilled coffee on, and begged for some of her long, dark hair. The young woman listened patiently to her sad story and said, “Yes.”

The woman could not believe it and her gratitude could not be adequately expressed. Who says yes to, “Can I have some of your hair?”

The woman waited and waited and the hair never came. Finally, she inquired and the young woman described the small envelope she had mailed her hair in. But it never came, so the young woman volunteered to send hair AGAIN. This tale of friendship deepens and the woman still can’t believe this part of the story! Easing the woman’s worried mind, when the second envelope arrived, so did the first, which the post office had held because it had only three digits of the four digit address.

a patch of a red woolen coat showing a hole
The holes on the right front panel of the long, red BORROWED coat

The master seamstress graciously accepted delivery of the red woolen coat and the hair. She proceeded to find many small holes in the coat and decided she could not repair the big one and leave the rest. Repairing the big hole required pinning needles across the opening, first in one direction, and then the other, creating a loom, over which the seamstress sewed red strands from inside the lining of the coat onto the broken strands, using the human hair, which does not show. Suffice it to say that THIS IS A VERY TIGHT WEAVE, across severed strands and a hole about three-quarters of an inch across.

The woman did not ask how many hours this took the master seamstress because she had originally asked her friend to help her sew on a few buttons and the woman couldn’t bear to know the answer. Instead of two buttons, the seamstress chose to repair the coat, and she fixed the large hole in such a way that it does not show. She then sewed a decorative trim onto the coat, making it beautifully unique, and restored in such a way that the value cannot be measured because of her loving gesture toward both, “The Woman Who Should Never Borrow Coats” and the owner of the red woolen coat.

Though the owner of the red, woolen coat had not worn the coat in nine years, it has been agreed that she will now be wearing the coat—even if she has to drive to the snow. 😊

So, stay tuned for Lyric Power Publishing’s new not-related-to-publishing series, THE ADVENTURES OF THE RED WOOLEN COAT, just because it’s fun.

A woman stands in a parking lot wearing a long red woolen coat
Ms. Powers (author of children’s books and pictured in her coat), Ms. Bickell (the coat borrower), and Ms. Steele (the master seamstress) are members of the same writers’ group who have become close friends.


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Countries Across the World Work Together to Conserve the Natural World through the IUCN

The IUCN (International Union for Conservation of Nature) is the global authority on the state of the natural world and the measures that are needed to protect it. The IUCN mission statement is:

Governmental and civil organizations (1300 altogether!) work to enhance economic development and nature conservation—the two aren’t mutually exclusive. The IUCN provides a neutral forum for member organizations to be heard, and members vote democratically on resolutions concerning global conservation initiatives. Thousands of experts are involved in their important work, and author Elaine A. Powers is part of the Iguana Specialist Group of the IUCN. Many iguana species are among the most endangered animals and this group looks after the big lizards.

“Influence, encourage and assist societies throughout the world to conserve the integrity and diversity of nature and to ensure that any use of natural resources is equitable and ecologically sustainable.”

You might have heard of CITES, the Convention on International Trade in Endangered Species. Animals whose existence is threatened are listed in the IUCN Red List.Information can be found on those animals, including how endangered the species is and why. Is it threatened or nearly extinct? The IUCN works to see the populations of these animals recover so they can be removed from the Red List.

Iguanas are important for ecosystem health due to their role as seed dispersers for many native plants. These large lizards are threatened by habitat degradation, by human development and the introduction of invasive species. In addition, iguanas are hunted for human use.

The ISG recommends and enacts immediate and effective measures to conserve iguanas globally. The IUCN is a wonderful example of countries around the world working together for conservation.

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Our New Category: Living with Reptiles

We’re starting a new category for posts at Tails, Tales,Adventures, Oh, My! today. We’re calling it Living with Reptiles.

I Live with a Menagerie of Reptiles, by Elaine A. Powers, Author

People think living with mammals or even birds is perfectly normal, but tell people you live with reptiles and they look at you strangely. I don’t understand this. Dogs bark, cats meow, and birds squawk. Fish might seem quiet but then you have the noise of the bubbler. Reptiles make the perfect, quiet pets and most sleep through the night right along with you. What could be better than that?

I do have stories to tell.

Tortoises Noises are Targeted—At Me!

I know I just said reptiles make quiet pets, but there are always exceptions to the rule.

I have a creep of red-foot tortoises roaming around my home. (Creep is the collective noun for tortoises.) You can hear the slik, slik, slik sound of their feet moving on the tile, but red-foots are known for being noisy breathers. And I don’t think it’s just breathing—I think they are talking to each other. When I get home after along trip, when I’m travel-tired and trying to fall asleep, they gather beside my bed and whisper to one another for . . . hours. I’ve decided that means they’re happy I’m home. I am happy to be home—I miss them, too!

On a typical day, they allow me to sleep peacefully through the night—until dawn, that is, when they decide to scratch their apparently itchy shells on the metal frame of my bed. Back and forth, back and forth. This is a very effective way to encourage me to get up and prepare their breakfast salads.

A Red-foot tortoise crawling around inside a paper grocery bag
Myrtle the Red-foot Tortoise at home

The other day I was on the phone for an important business call.  I hear this loud, scrunching sound behind me.  Myrtle Tortoise had knocked over my paper grocery bag filled with other paper bags. She crawled inside, crunching the bags, crushing them, sliding them about, etc.  Needless to say, it was quite noisy. Because I had to focus on the call, I couldn’t go and grab her until the conversation was over.  As soon as I hung up the phone, Myrtle ceased her excavation of the bags.

“Just a coincidence,” I thought I heard her think as she strolled away. 😊

Elaine A. Powers is the author of Don’t Call Me Turtle, thanks to Myrtle, who asked her to write the book.