I look ahead to the year 2020 with great excitement as I embark on a great new adventure. My newest children’s storybook “Butterfly Dreams” is to be published by Et Alia Press this spring. http://www.etaliapress.com
Carol Dabney is author and illustrator of Butterfly Dreams: A Friendship Takes Flight, forthcoming Spring 2020. She is the music teacher at Saint Mark’s Day School in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Raised on a forty-acre goat farm in the Ozarks, in her younger years Carol studied Italian opera, was “Miss Arkansas Teen,” and won a national talent award. She began her recording career in Nashville at the age of seventeen. She is the mother of five children and has nine grandchildren. In 1985, her family moved from the farm to the Hawaiian Islands, where she worked as a disc jockey at KFSH radio. She signed a singer song-writer contract with Paradise Records in Honolulu in 1997. Since her time in Hawaii, Carol plays the ukulele and takes it to all her events wherever she goes. When the family returned to Arkansas, she continued working as a music resource teacher presenting her unique style of interactive story-telling with puppets and art. Carol illustrates for several other children’s authors, and paints animal canvases and gift cards for her sister’s art gallery in California. Carol and her husband are the entertainers every year at the Arkansas State Capital Christmas lighting celebration. Together, they travel all over the state to entertain at festivals and community events.
Visit Carol at https://caroldabney.wordpress.com/
Carol Dabney reading and singing at a bookstores in Little Rock last summer.
(A note from Carol about editor publisher Erin Wood)
Little Rock Editor/Publisher Erin Wood is an amazing woman who comes alongside local Arkansas authors to help them realize their dreams. I am thankful for her encouraging guidance, creative ideas and marketing knowledge. We have just begun and its going to be such a fun year with her, her team and all the other other authors with Et Alia Press.
Together, we have been going over story line word by word to create a charming treasure for young readers and their families.
(About the book)
The story tales us about friendship through a little girl named Lily-Jane and a caterpillar named Carlos, who has big dreams to fly. He is often worried, but Lily-Jane tells him, “I think the size of your dream is just right.”
(About the art)
The artwork illustrations are colorful and children can follow a cute little basset hound from page to page to discover small creatures such as honeybees in the garden, frogs in the river and squirrels in the trees.
artwork I’ve painted is colorful, filled with lots of little creatures children can discover as the pages are turned. Butterflies and honeybees fly around a garden. The river winds around where there are some green frogs sitting on a log and a hound tags along fromone page tohe next where he sniffs out some bunnies or squirrels on the farm.
Will Carlos get his wings to fly? What will happen next? A tender friendship blooms while we are also learning all about the life-cycle of the amazing monarch butterflies.
(About the song)
As many of you know I am a music teacher in Little Rock. So of course I had to compose a song for this storybook. “Butterflies and Honeybees” gives light to how important these small creatures are as pollinators. I will be recording the song in a couple weeks with Rod at Blue Chair Recording and I’m truly excited that Tim Crouch will be playing violin and mandolin on the production. Tim won the fiddler of the year at the Arkansas Country Music Awards last June 3, 2019.
(From my editor)
BUTTERFLY DREAMS: A FRIENDSHIP TAKES FLIGHT
We all have dreams, but what if they are too big?
After Lily-Jane helps her grandmother build a butterfly habitat, a close look at a caterpillar’s spots sends her stumbling in disbelief. “Me llamo Carlos,” says the charming little caterpillar, and an extraordinary friendship is born. Carlos teaches Lily-Jane his first language, Spanish, and Lily-Jane shares what she has learned about the miraculous life-cycle of the monarch butterfly. But when Carlos becomes trapped in his chrysalis, his dream of wings seems more out of reach than ever before.
As readers discover the tremendous power of encouraging words to nurture a friend past paralyzing self-doubt even when it means letting them go to fulfill their destiny, Carlos learns whether friendship and faith are enough to help him soar on the wings of a dream that may be just the right size.
You’ll love this book, accompanied by an original single, “Butterflies and Honey Bees,” by Little Rock’s favorite children’s music teacher, musician, and artist Carol Dabney.
Butterfly Dreams is ideal for classroom readings as students await butterflies emerging from their chrysalises as well as celebrations on the big day when butterflies are released into the sky to migrate south. It is also the perfect gift for coming of age, when a friend moves away, or any time someone needs an extra nudge of encouragement to dream big.
I look forward to reading this story beginning this spring and have summertime programs already getting lined up at libraries and bookstores across Arkansas. Also have some classroom teachers who have asked me to read at their butterfly release parties this fall. All very exciting news to announce.
I am very blessed to be given this opportunity.
See you at a library soon.
Bring your wings – where new friendships will take flight!
2019 has been such a fun and adventurous year for us. Rod and I were blessed with so many more wonderful opportunities to travel around the state of Arkansas and sing at festivals, schools and senior centers. We are very excited to announce that after working hard the past five years on composing and recording we now have released our debut country album. “Rod and Carol Country Music” which will be available to hear at CDBaby and YouTube in a few short weeks.
We have used this fun picture for all our business cards so naturally it became the front of our Cd album cover. It was taken by Cindy Reyes at a patriotic program we sang for at the Children’s Library and Learning Center in Little Rock.
Rod and I sang a patriotic program at the Jacksonville Air Force Base Children’s Library in the summer time 2018 and 2019.
We attended the June 3, 2019 Arkansas Country Music Awards and were thrilled to see nominations for Darian Stribling -producer/engineer (from where we record at Blue chair Recording Studio in Austin, Arkansas) and Tim Crouch who won The fiddler of the year award. He has played violin and several other instruments on every single one of our songs. All I can say is we have been blessed -Awesome!
Oh our album has one song that is a standard. It was the very first song I recorded in Nashville when I was a teenager, It is beautiful and the title of it is “ARKANSAS” composed by Damon Black in the 70’s. I choose to record it again because I loved it so much. Its about a young girl and her memories about a 40 acre farm. I was raised on a 40 acre farm in Madison county. I milked goats. We had about 40 goats and many had to be milked every day, twice. I remember my life on the farm fondly.
The other songs on the album are composed and recorded by Rod Ragsdale and myself. titles: “Something I Never Had” “Nothings Better Than You” Thought Wed Have More Time” Full of Class” “Where You Go” “Soldier” and “Clapping Hands”
We sang at the Arkansas Goat Festival this past October held in PerryVille. Wow must have been 8,000 people by days end, plus goats.
I sang the national anthem for the Alzheimer’s Walk for the Cure. Craig O’Niell from channel 11 TVNews was the MC. We also see him every year when he becomes the star of “How The Grinch Stole Christmas” and we are the Who-Ville singers. Actually after five years Rod got pretty excited to show off our new Cd to The Grinch. The two men always sit here in between shows and share a joke or two, it has become tradition.
Singing at the Arkansas Goat Festival in Perryville, Arkansas October 2019.
Singing at a family Christmas banquet at Brookdale senior living in Little Rock.
I love recording in the studio and being creative with a brand new song idea. Engineer Darian Stribling is amazing and we lean on him for advise for much of it. Tim Crouch adds all the finishing instrumental touches. We are very blessed to have such a great team.
Banjo from Victory radio in North Little Rock invited us to sing live one afternoon and we ended up talking and singing for almost the whole two hour show. Banjo was and still is a great entertainer and a really nice fellow to call our friend. I use to be a disc jockey when I lived in Hawaii. It was fun being in this studio and seeing how things have changed now that things are more digital. I really enjoyed being a disc jockey.
We got into the elevator one day at FoxRidge Senior Living and this sign was taped up next to all the months activities. We are regulars for a many Happy Hours at senior Centers around Central Arkansas. A very fun time to sing, tell jokes and stories to some of the kindest audiences ever. Plus this wonderful golden generation thinks that we are just youngsters. We most often leave with big smiles on our faces from something someone said or did. Always so glad we came.
We also got to travel much more around the state this past year and hope to expand in 2020. (I guess we better do it while we are still ‘youngsters’.) Also with Little Rock, NLR, Maumelle, Bryant, Sherwood, and Conway, we also sang in Star City, Pine Bluff, Camden, Perryville, and Hot Springs. We are very hopeful to get up to Northeast Arkansas and Madison county in 2020.
When we are in Camden we always stop in at Woods Place to have lunch. Highly recommended. Thanks to James and Patty Woods, owners and friends.
Well these are just some of the over 140 times we sang this past year at festivals, senior centers, schools, libraries, churches, book stores and radio shows. As well as highlights such as the Arkansas State capital, Holiday House, Children’s Library GrinchFest, The Little Rock Zoo, The Good Earth Pumpkin Festival, Outlet Stores, Jacksonville Air Force Base and Alzheimer’s Walk for the Cure. We are thankful for so many who took part in having us be apart of these special events. We love music and the opportunities it gives us to interact with the young and the young at heart.
We hope you will check out our music by going to YouTube and CdBaby online. May God richly bless you in this brand new decade -The Roaring ’20’s has come again!
God has been good to us. He has met our needs and kept us healthy to continue. (I had a medical emergency this past summer which landed me in the hospital for five days. It was a serious situation and I did not take for granted my recovery. More about that later.)
We are thankful for our life’s work and finding each other.
Thankful for our families, (My youngest son graduated from college and is an RN that works at the Arkansas Heart Hospital. My five children and I added it up and realized that we have had a someone, including me, in college for the last 20 years – happy end of an era. More about that later.)
I am thankful for my job as a music teacher at Saint Mark’s and all the children and teachers that make my life absolutely joyful.
Rod and I are thankful for this great country America, where we have opportunity like no other.
We pray that our music and stories will touch people and that sometimes we will cause them to sing and laugh along the way.
Blessing to you
Carol and Rod
Authors Carol and Rod read children stories for summer reading programs,. Meet the authors at Book Warehouse at the Outlet Malls of Little Rock July 2019.
Singing some songs to get us started with an ukulele and harmonica.
Then Mr Rod read The Adventures of Andrew on the Golf Course Book One about mama duck.
Illustrations by Carol.
Thanks for stopping in Book WareHouse Story Hour with Rod and Carol for story and song.
Thanks for your support. -Carol and Rod
ParkBench interview of Carol Dabney by Barb Roberts 2019
I big Thank you to Barb Roberts for this ParkBench interview. She talks with folks every day to share their work and she shows such amazing support for others.
Saturday October 20, 2018 the Good Earth hosted a children’s story time and gave me an opportunity to read The Happy Pumpkin. We sang and read and had a blast! My book and several of my artwork pumpkin paintings are displayed inside at Good Earth in Little Rock for the month of October, if anyone would like to have a Happy Pumpkin painting by Miss Carol. For anyone living out of state you can get a copy of this Halloween/Thanksgiving storybook at Amazon. A wonderful fun story about sharing pumpkin seeds giving tribute to the America’s very first farmers.
The Happy Pumpkin has been revised to a big 8 x 11 size book with colorful artwork. Intended for young children and families to read during harvest/fall Halloween to Thanksgiving and as a Thanksgiving Day tradition.
Its a fun-filled poetic read of one pilgrims journey to America, written for children, but with a message for all. Its about the struggles and rewards of harvest time. The Happy Pumpkin grows up and produces lots of seeds to feed the new nation, becomes a Jack-O-Lantern, and helps the pilgrim find a good wife all by Thanksgiving Day.
The author, Carol Dabney, was raised on a 40 acre farm in Madison County Arkansas. She learned the value of a hard working farm where there was crops to harvest and goats to milk. She has five children and six children. She happily works as a music teacher at St. Mark’s Day School in Little Rock.
Mr. Rod plays the harmonica for the kids at Good Earth.
I brought along a couple of friends my students enjoy at school. Mr. Owl, who sings in a deep voice the song “I’m Not Scared!” but often scares himself, until the children sing softly so he stops hiding his eyes and returns to singing along. Then there is Green Frog, who sing the song “Five Green and Speckled Frogs” I also brought Baby Bumblebee and Dudley the Duck who gives kisses to children and sing the song “Six Little Duck”.
There was a goat dressed as a pumpkin, so naturally I was drawn to the lit’ guy. Rod says says that’s why he and I get along so well.
My artwork is displayed inside the main building at the Good Earth for the month of October, if anyone wants to take home a Miss Carol Happy Pumpkin painting. My storybooks will be there too. The Good Earth on Cantrell Hwy 10 in Little Rock, Arkansas.
Thank you so much for stopping by. Our next programs will be November 11 at the Convention Center downtown Little Rock Holiday House Santa event from 9-noon. Rod and I will be there singing Christmas songs and reading holiday books.
Also November 17 at the Hilary Clinton Children’s Library and Learning Center in Little Rock for their 10am children’s story hour.
And Saturday December 1 at the Arkansas State Capital annual Christmas Tree Lighting. Look for us inside after the parade at 4. We will read and sing from 6-8pm . Its a fun way to wait in line to see Santa. The capital is decorated beautiful. This is the event of the year you don’t want to miss. See you there.
All my story books are available online at amazon as well as audiobooks.
Thank you for your support. Be blessed. -Carol Dabney
Rod and Carol singing Hawaiian luaus in Central Arkansas all summer for various programs and events from children’s library events, family parties and festivals, to senior centers. Summer 2018.
Michelle Dabney dancing hula for the Kid Zone at 10 fitness in Little Rock.
We sing Aloha and happy birthday programs for senior centers around the state.
presenting Hawaiian programs through stories, art and music to the children at Whole Foods in Little Rock
Watercolor art by Carol Dabney. Illustrations in storybooks. Children’s books written by Carol Dabney found online at Amazon. https://www.amazon.com/Carol-Dabney/e/B0056B1AFW
Joined by Cindy Reyes and Michelle Dabney for more Hawaiian programs. Summer time fun. Hawaiian/English music by Carol Dabney found online at Amazon
Stop into Amazon and Check out our books and music. Thank you for your support.