Join, Maine’s Island puppy, on his adventures

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Clipper is a sweet Labrador puppy who loves to get into mischief. Through his adventures on a Maine island we all “grow up” with this adorable puppy as he warms our hearts and souls.

Join us on Clipper’s journey of life as he overcomes problems and obstacles every child goes through. This blog serves as a way to share ideas and create a dialogue about growing up in Maine. Please let us know if you would like a signed copy or line up a book signing or reading!
To order click here.


Clipper’s ABC’s in English, French, Spanish, and Japanese

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Finally, a children’s book in four languages! Here is an example of some of the playful, educational pages in Clipper’s ABC’s, plus the front and back.

Journey with Clipper, the adorable Maine island puppy, as he takes children into his world, while teaching them their ABC’s in English, French, Spanish, and Japanese. One painting leads into the next, as children follow bubbles throughout the book. This unique concept gives children continuity, as they discover other languages.

Reading Clipper’s ABC’s in English, French, Spanish, and Japanese children and adults fall in love with the puppy in the different circumstances the artist, Ramona du Houx, depicts him in. Some are humorous, some serious. Children eagerly try to pronounce the different words, as if Clipper has given them the courage to do so. Clipper takes them into his world, while teaching them their ABC’s.

With the availability of the Internet it is easy for adults to find out how to pronounce the various words in Clipper’s ABC’s in English, French, Spanish, and Japanese. ISBN: 9781882190294

Place your order now. Send a check or money order for $17.95 to the publisher at: Polar Bear and Company, P.O. Box 311, Solon, Maine., 04979. Or call 207.643.2795. Order saying you read about the book here and receive free shipping in the Continental U.S.A.

Watercolor painting illustrations copyright © 2014 by Ramona du Houx. Clipper copyright © by Anita de Laguna Haviland. All rights reserved.

Clipper and the Village Park Bully, combats childhood bullying


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From Maine Insights News

In the third book in the Clipper Maine Island Labrador puppy series, Clipper and the Village Park Bully, our hero visits the village park for the first time. Excited to make new friends, he soon discovers he has a lot in common with other puppies. Then the park bully snarls at him and . . .

Clipper’s author, Anita de Laguna Haviland, takes on the bully in the park to help children and parents deal with this serious problem. Being bullied as a child can have harmful, long-term consequences, like being stunted emotionally and socially.

“I couldn’t sit by hearing about all the bully situations in our schools across America. I hope Clipper and the Village Park Bully will show children that there are answers to their situations, that they are not alone, and most importantly that people do care.”

“Everyone has a role to play in combating the epidemic of childhood bullying. I hope my paintings will connect with children so they know they are loved and important to us all,” said watercolor artist Ramona du Houx.

Nine out of 10 elementary school kids have been subjected to physical or psychological bullying by their peers, while six in 10 have been bullies themselves, according to a new study.

“The results show that even going down to young ages, we have very high levels of bullying and victimization,” said study lead author Dr. Thomas P. Tarshis, who conducted the research while with the division of child and adolescent psychiatry at Stanford University Medical Center. The findings were published in the April 2017 issue of the Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics.

More about the Clipper series—

Clipper is a sweet Labrador puppy who loves to get into mischief. His adventures on a Maine island reflect incidents everyone’s child somehow manages to get into. If we think far enough back, we got into them too. How Clipper solves situations, how those around him help or not provides direction—as a great picture book can do. All the while, this adorable puppy warms everyone’s heart and soul.

“These stories are based in experience. Our loving dogs have been wonderful teachers,” said de Laguna Haviland, who dedicates Clipper and the Village Park Bully to the memory of her loving dog Picasso.

Du Houx’s vibrant watercolor paintings bring the book’s words to life while inspiring children and fostering an appreciation of art. Studies show early childhood exposure to the arts helps calm children and encourages their imaginations.

“I love seeing the eyes of children light up as they turn the pages in Clipper. It’s so easy to fall in love with a Labrador puppy,” said Ramona. “He’s a wonderful role model for kids.”

Inspired by the visual splendor of the natural world and by children discovering it, Ramona has painted six picture books. Ramona’s photographic art has been exhibited worldwide since 1980. For the past twenty-two years she has worked as a journalist, artist, professional writer and photographer.

Clipper and the Village Park Bully is published by Polar Bear & Company, 8 Brook Street, P.O. Box 311, Solon, Maine.

The book retails at $17.95. ISBN 978-1-882190-64-5

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It is also available at great Maine bookstores, as well as

Watercolor painting illustrations copyright © 2017 by Ramona du Houx.

Clipper copyright © by Anita de Laguna Haviland. All rights reserved.


It’s Independence Day! with Clipper

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It’s Independence Day! It’s a great Holiday, Marie tells me.

We’re going to be in a parade on a float! It’s a very large wagon pulled by a truck, wow! That will be interesting. Marie will be in a cute dress with a funny hat, and I will have a red, white a blue ruffle around my neck. We’ve tried them on, and I think I look very cute. Puff is in a small kitten ruffle and in Mommy Diana’s knitting basket. She looks very cute, too.

Auntie Honey and Auntie Spinner will be there, too, in their ruffles. Great Auntie Sweetie is staying at home to “hold down the fort,” as Daddy David says. I think it’s a joke because we don’t have a fort unless you count the one Zach has in the back yard .Great Auntie Sweetie never goes near that.” Too many loud children,” she says.

Zach is marching with the band playing the snare drum! It’s a neat drum, and he plays it very well.

Best of all, Daddy David and Mommy Diana will be on the float with us. Mommy Diana will be dressed like Marie, and Daddy David will have on a top hat. We all laughed when he tried it on.

We’re having a great party during the late afternoon. Mommy Diana has been baking and cooking for it, and Daddy David is carefully working on his famous barbecued spare ribs! Everything smells so good!

It’s party time! Everyone is here! Marie has given me tiny pieces of her food, and I really liked the spare ribs. I would love one of the bones at least, but Mommy Diana says it has too much fat and would upset my puppy tummy.

We’re having red, white and blue ice cream, and Mommy Diana made the inside of the cake red, white and blue, too. I don’t know how she did it, but it is pretty and tastes good, too.

After dinner, everyone helped with the clean-up and when they left to go to the fireworks, all of the dishes were clean and put away! That’s the best part of a party, Mommy Diana says.

We all get in the car and drive to the Village Park for fireworks. We sit on the grass on a blanket and watch. Puff is in Mommy Diana’s lap, cuddling closely.

There’s a big boom and lots of bright flashes, and it scares me! I start to tremble and cry a bit, and Marie holds me closer and tells me that the booms and flashes are the fireworks. “Look, see how pretty the flashes are?” and “Aren’t the booms fun?” Puff disappears under Mommy Diana’s Arm and then peeks out.

I don’t agree with Marie at first, but gradually in her warm lap, I stop trembling and start looking at the flashes. They are pretty now that I know they won’t hurt me. And the booms are like the big drums in the parade this morning, but much, much, more loud!

We went home and we all agreed that it was a great Fourth of July!

Happy Fourth of July to all!

Holiday letters with love from Clipper

JDaddy Zach is writing our Holiday Letter to many friends. He’s adding in lots of photos, many of them of Puff and me! I am a very photogenic puppy, he says. Puff is hard to photograph because she is all black, but her green eyes sparkle through in any photo. Sometimes you can see only one of them if she is blinking, but it sparkles!

I think Daddy David doesn’t want my help because he put me outside the study door and said, “Later Clipper, we’ll play later.” I want to help him work, so I’ll sit here and be his guard dog! Puff can help too, she sits on the chair and guards from there. She looks fierce when she grins at anyone who comes to the door.

We let Mommy Diana go in to take him some more coffee, and heard her say, “Do you know what Clipper and Puff are doing . . . ?” and then there was a chuckle from each of them!

Daddy David came out and took a photo of me guarding the door and Puff on the chair, and then he called for a family photo. That’s a bit of a problem because Great Auntie Sweetie doesn’t want to get out of her warm bed, but finally we are all lined up on the stairs.

I was in Marie’s lap next to Great Auntie Sweetie, but we could not find Puff! Finally Marie spotted her, on top of the tree!

Daddy David had to get a ladder to get her down but she was scared by that, too. So she hopped to Daddy David’s back, slowly, climbed down, hanging on with her tiny claws. There were a number of ouches as she went down his sweater, and then she was onto the chair behind, and jumped onto Zach’s lap!

Mommy Diana set the camera to take a photo and when it flashed, Puff hopped into the tree again! That kitty can really jump!


So the family photo shows a black smudge and then an extra photo of Puff on the chair guarding Daddy David’s study.

While the letter was printing out, slowly because of all of the photos, Puff watched it and patted each page as it came, making sure that they were lined up properly. She is really a sweet, neat kitty who really tries to help.

I went into the kitchen to help Zach make dog cookies. They were made of flour, oatmeal, peanut butter, garlic powder, and apple chunks, all mushed in together. There was as much flour as oatmeal, and then peanut butter so that they didn’t stick.

Mommy Diana added a bit of chicken broth when it was too thick for Zach to stir. Then Zach grated into it some of my dried liver treats that the very nice UPS man brings me. They were to add proper doggie flavor.

Mommy Diana looked at the batter, and said, they certainly were made love even if they do crumble a bit!

Daddy David came in to help with his special kitty treat recipe. It smelled a lot when cooking, Puff walked up and down in front of the oven until they were done! He used some grated cheddar cheese, whole wheat flour, broth and s couple of sardines to make it. It was Daddy David’s own special recipe, and we wondered if kitties would like it. Puff did.

Marie dropped the dough onto the parchment paper with a very small scoop to they would be just the right size. They were baked for a little while in a warm oven until they were browned on top and came out.

When they were cool, and crumbly, they packed them carefully into little doggie Holiday Greetings bags and Marie added doggie bones to reach one, just the right size for each doggie. Another Holiday bag was added for kitties with a cookie that Daddy David made, and each one got a little toy mouse. They both tied ribbons on them, but sometimes Marie and Zach helped each other with the very wide ribbons.

After helping with the cookie baking Mommy Diana went back to wrapping gifts for various people who have the doggies. There was a different kind of paper to almost every family, sometimes the same, but very colorful!

We took the bags of treats to each family on our block and we caroled them when they opened their doors! I even added my song, too, and everyone liked it. I think I sing beautifully, as well as Marie and Zachary. Puff was at home with great Auntie Sweetie because she is too little to go out in the cold yet. She can sing, and sometimes we sing songs together!

We hoped that your Holidays were very Happy!!!

Thanksgiving celebrations with Maine’s Island Labrador puppy


Yesterday was Thanksgiving, and it was a Big Day for all of us! Mommy Diana cooked 2 turkeys because she wanted to feed some of the neighbors also besides having the whole family in for the celebration! There were 2 whole, big delicious turkeys! The house surely smelled delicious, too, all over.

Right after dinner, we walked off our meal by going to Mrs. Frazer’s house to give her a Thanksgiving dinner. She was expecting us, and she was so happy! Her little dog Jocko was very happy also when I gave him a big bone that was a special treat!

Next we walked further down the block to give a meal to Mr. Greenbaum. He was so pleased that he had his table all set up for a good meal. Just like the other meals, he had turkey, gravy, mashed potatoes, carrots and a salad, all from our garden! Puff and I gave his cat Meow a special treat of cat nip! He loved it. Puff came along in her basket over Zach’s arm, you see.

And finally, at the end of the block we gave a meal to Mr. and Mrs. Alexander a big meal, too. Their dog, Daisy, a golden retriever, had new puppies, and we went in to see them. Daisy is a very good mother, and her puppies were plump and sleeping. I think they had a very good Thanksgiving before we got here! Daisy got her own bit of turkey as a treat because she is feeding 8 puppies all be herself! Wow, that is impressive! Puff also gave her a big bone.

It was so good. Everyone got a real Thanksgiving meal with vegetables from our garden, and Zach, Marie and I baked brownies and cookies for desserts. Puff was sleeping in her basket. She is a baby kitty and sleeps even more than I do.

Finally we went back home to have our desserts. My aunties and I can’t have any pie or ice cream, but we had something better. All of us doggies had great big special bones to chew on for days and days! Puff got a tiny toy mouse.

Daddy David got out his trumpet and played songs. I sang with him and so did my aunties, very quietly of course. Our company joined in on the best songs. He plays very well… and we sang “She’ll be coming round the mountain” with lots of happiness and energy. That wasn’t quiet at all. The Toots were especially good. I could really sing to them.

Suddenly the doorbell rang! It was Policeman Joe! What was the matter? Continue reading

Clipper the Maine Island puppy loves Pumpkins-celebrate with him!


It’s October and that means it is time to clean the Village Park, have the Pie Party and have Halloween, all in one long, happy afternoon!

All of us are making pumpkin faces to have for a big Halloween Party at the Village Park tomorrow! Some pumpkins are a special kind, just for making pies, and Marie and Zach are helping roll out the dough. It will be a great party. I can hardly wait!

Some of the pumpkin faces are happy and some are scary. One looks just like Daddy David, and we all laugh!

It’s hard to sleep tonight waiting for the party at the Village Park. The last time I was there, a nasty dog growled at me. I don’t think he will be there for the party, though. Policeman Joe told his parents to keep him home until he could be nice.

Party Day! We load up the car, with people, dogs, pies and pumpkins with candles for later after it is dark.

We will have lots of puppies and lots of children and lots of parents at the park. Everyone in the Village is coming! They all want to clean up the park after a summer of great fun! Then they know they will all have a slice of really yummy pumpkin pie! Continue reading

Clipper in the garden

GThis has been a big garden time! Mommy Diana and Daddy David went and bought many plants for the garden and lots of little seeds. Also they had outside lots of little plants that Mommy Diana grew all over in the windows of the house! The window sills look very empty now.

I’ve been out in the big vegetable garden with Mommy Diana, and Puff. We watched very carefully while she planted little white things she called, “Onions,” and then because they smelled badly, we dug them up, carefully leaving each one where it was.
We like the lavender and mint. We left the seeds and all of the plants, but the onions didn’t smell nice in my garden. We didn’t like them.

Mommy Diana put several types of tomatoes in the gardens, all the way from really big ones to tiny little grape tomatoes.
Mommy Diana even planted a garden for us dogs and Puff. In it she had planted some tomatoes, some cherry tomatoes for my aunties, and some tiny ones are for me and Puff. Marie and Zachary are allowed to snack from both gardens! It is much better, she said, to plant some for us rather than have us leave half eaten ones all over. But she didn’t put any onions in it! I think Mommy Diana is right! Continue reading