My name is Stacey Kelly and I am the author, illustrator and founder of Your Very Own Story. After having my baby girl in November 2013, My hubby and I decided I that I would leave my job as a French & Spanish teacher to be a stay-at-home Mummy. I always knew that I wouldn’t go back to work and dreamed that one day I would have my own business. However, I had no idea that having this very precious new role as a parent would not only change my heart forever, but that it would also change the entire course of my life!
One day, flustered by my inability to settle my daughter (despite endless hours of jigging, shushing and cuddling!) I found myself resorting to some interesting, albeit bizarre lengths to calm her and make her smile. As any first time parent will know, you will do ANYTHING to stop your baby from crying no matter how absurd it makes you look. The anxiety takes over and before you know it you are frantically going through every trick in your very limited ‘please stop crying’ book! One particular day, I found myself making up stories (in the most ridiculously high-pitched voice) using my daughter’s name as the main character. When my very best acting efforts failed and she continued to scream, I spontaneously broke into song at the top of my voice. I sang this made-up story whilst randomly attempting to make the end of every line rhyme – not an easy task when you are doing it off the cuff! Admittedly some of the rhyming ‘words’ were essentially made up sounds so that the song flowed, but what did it matter? My baby girl had FINALLY STOPPED CRYING!!! What a result! In what can only be described as a moment of desperation (followed by sheer relief when the crying stopped), I all of a sudden had a light bulb moment. Putting my daughter’s name into these stories inspired me to write and illustrate a rhyming, children’s book that could be personalised with any child’s details. Each child would therefore become the star of his/her very own book. Thanks to a crazy act of motherhood, Your Very Own Story was born!
When I look at books that I received as a child, I always love it when the person who bought me the book had written inside the cover that it was from them. It’s almost like it kept that memory fresh in my mind. Because of this, I have created a page in the front of each book where we print a special message from you. That way you can give a gift that is a lasting memory of this special moment in time. Also, when my daughter was born, somebody bought us a baby record book. I loved it for all of 2 weeks and then got so caught up in pooey nappies and sleepless nights that the last thing on my mind was filling it in! I filled in the important pages and left the rest blank. There are certain things that every parent doesn’t want to forget, so I thought of all the most important moments to remember and then created one special page at the back of each book where you can record them.
Family has always been important to me and some of my greatest memories as a child are of sitting around a table doing craft activities together. I know that these activities take a lot of planning and us parents are busy bees so with this in mind, I have created a Kids’ Club full of exciting, printable activities that you can all sit and do together. Each book comes with a certificate giving your child free membership. I have also created some lovely free resources that parents can download each week. These freebies are available to everyone.
I have always loved anything creative and have truly enjoyed every minute of this special journey. Your Very Own story was inspired by my efforts to make my little girl smile. I hope that our books & Kids’ Club have captured the spirit of their original purpose and that they put a smile on your face and the face of every child that receives one.
Find out more about me & my family by reading my parenting blog. My hubby even writes a guest post every now and again giving his perspective as a dad!
OUR PERSONALISED BOOKS INCLUDE…
THE STORY INCLUDES:
Your child’s name, where they live & their friend’s name
SPECIAL BONUS PAGES:
One with a nice message from you & one to record your child’s memories & milestones