Posts Tagged ‘The Tree Watcher’

I have a lovely little story to share with you today.

Please enjoy the authors guest post.

Check out my review.

And don’t forget to enter the giveaway!


Author Christopher P. Stanley is here to tell us about the inspiration behind his book and about the images.


The inspiration behind my book was a walk that I took with my infant son a few months ago.  It was in mid-summer, and there were many things on my mind.  From issues at work, to dealing with simply trying to keep my house clean when four children live there, I felt very distracted and was definitely not being mindful of my many blessings.  I decided that I wanted to walk down to the park a mile away from where I live, and I took Sam along so that he could have a change of scenery.  As we started walking, I was not really paying attention to my surroundings as I was getting stuck in my thoughts.  When we were down the street a bit, I looked down at Sam to see how he was doing – and that’s when everything changed.  You should have seen his face.  Here was this baby boy, all of 9 months old, teaching me about wonder, joy, and mindfulness.  The way he was looking up at the trees, I could see how amazed he was.  And he was right!  I stopped to look as well, and it was really quite extraordinary.  We are fortunate enough to have many mature trees in our neighborhood, and I was overcome with their beauty and just their…dignity.  As we continued along, I joined Sam in being mindful of my surroundings, and many of those questions and scenarios from the book happened on this walk.  It’s truly amazing what we can experience just by paying attention.  
Furthering my inspiration, I have always loved picture books and realized just how much they have to offer the reader. I remember getting The Eleventh Hour by Graeme Base when I was about 10 years old, and I was just obsessed!  As picture books were such big parts of my life, I always wanted to make my own.  I made simple ones as a child, but I really started wanting to make a picture book when I was 26 years old.  I had a good idea, and even wrote an outline, but never did anything with it.  It really wasn’t until that walk with Sam that “The Muse” spoke to me, as it were, and I decided to actually follow through with my life-long dream of writing children’s books.  So it took almost ten years, but I’m happy to report I’m following through.  I’ll have another release in a couple of months, and I’ve finally started to work on my original idea from almost a decade ago.  What a walk that was, huh?

The images were a lot of fun to create.  My artistic medium has always been photography/digital art.  For this story, I decided to capture some of the actual trees that Sam and I encountered on our walk.  So over the course of a couple of months, I took pictures.  Some I had Sam pose in, others I did not.  The image from the cover is actually a Beech tree in my front yard!  One of my favorite pages, the page with the autumn leaves, is on a street by my eldest daughter’s middle school.  I turned down the street and knew right away I needed this picture for the book.  So after I took the photos, I started manipulating them on my computer. Some photos took little time and effort, while others I spent a lot of time getting what I wanted.  Some pictures worked beautifully while others I had to do a lot of manipulating and creating.  It was definitely hard work! Overall, it took about 4 months to get them all done.


The Tree Watcher

by Christopher P. Stanley



My Review

I’ve always loved trees. Loved to lie on the ground and peer up through the branches. Hear the leaves rustle in the wind. And even loved rolling in them when the trees shed their leaves for the winter.

Do you remember doing that? Do you remember being buried in a pile of leaves, breathing their earthy scent? I do to this day.

This book is like taking a walk into the past. To those younger years when everything seemed so large and miraculous.

The delightfully colorful illustrations in the story burst from the pages. It makes me want to get out some watercolors and do some painting.

One of the first things I painted with water colors was a tree. Loved drawing the sturdy trunk, adding the branches, and the smaller limbs. Then came the leaves. All shapes and sizes.

Come take a walk with Christopher and Samuel. Next time you’re outside, stop and look at the trees. See their strength and beauty.

While this picture book is intended for early readers, I’d recommend it to all ages. The beautiful illustrations and story fill you with a sense of wonder.

5 Stars



This story draws inspiration from the author taking his son, Samuel, on a walk to the park. He noticed how amazed Samuel was at everything there was to see – especially the trees that towered above him. With artwork depicting these trees that forged such awe in young Samuel’s eyes, “The Tree Watcher” takes the reader along on this wonder-inducing walk.



Author Christopher P. Stanley

Christopher P. Stanley

Christopher P. Stanley grew up in Grove City, OH and had a childhood that centered around imagination, play, and exploring the outdoors (mixed in with a healthy amount of Nintendo). A large part of his, perhaps over-active, imagination is owed to books – “Where the Wild Things Are”, “Vinegar Pancakes and Vanishing Cream”, and “every single Dr. Seuss book” made up just a small sampling of the children’s books that filled him with wonder – and continue to do so to this very day!

Christopher graduated from Ohio Dominican University with a degree in Education, and has been an educator for the past 10 years in both the K-12 and Higher Education settings. He currently lives in Upper Arlington, OH with his wife, Morgan, and their four children – Rylee, Olivia, Lylah, and Samuel – who remind him every day of the magic that is childhood.

Christopher is an author and co-founder of Jump Splash Books, and he aims to highlight imagination and celebrate the joy of childhood through his stories. He co-founded Jump Splash with his childhood friend and artist Alex LeVasseur, and the name of the company encapsulates their vision – through imagination and wonder, we can find joy; even in something as simple as jumping in a puddle.

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I have one print copy to giveaway.

Giveaway is open Internationally, so all are welcome.

To enter, please leave an email address so I can contact you if you win , and answer this question:

“Where’s your favorite place to take a walk?”

Giveaway ends April 4th.


Thanks so much for visiting fuonlyknew and Good Luck!

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