2012— What a Year!

2012… was a crazy good year for me. I sure hope it was great for you, too.

I have this theory: if I have an awesome New Year’s Eve, the year to follow shall be grand, as well. If New Year’s Eve is nothing special, then the year to follow will be pretty dull, too.

2012 started off with a BANG. I was in Traverse City, Michigan for work… which sounds pretty crappy. But, it was a long overnight with plenty of time for fun. And fun, we had. Here is a photo of the giant cherry dropping in downtown Traverse City, the Cherry Capitol of the World:


2012 was the first year that I did a yearly Bucket List. I crossed my seven items off in a timely fashion, experiencing new things and finding old talents. Just seven items? Maybe I’ll get more brave for 2014… but seven seems to work well for me. I tend to make my Bucket List items pretty large, so that they consume more than just a few minutes of an activity.

2012 is the year that my first book came out! Pete the Popcorn was released on Leap Day and scored three #1 positions on Amazon the day of its release. Here is a look back at that:

pete logo small tile

The “Official” Pete logo…


Nick and Joe visiting with illustrator Kathleen Smith Waters in her hometown of Cleveland.

business card

Our business card!!


The Best Part? Visiting kids.


The Second Best Part? The YUMMY popcorn we’ve tried all over the country!


Joe in a school, with a common sign we see… unfortunately, signs aren’t enough.


Pete the Popcorn on the teleprompter at one of our many television appearances.


Joe showing off our cover story at The Toledo Blade!


#1 on Amazon… three different charts, baby!


Me, reading to a group of children.

As you can see, Pete the Popcorn kept us pretty darn busy during the first part of the year… and throughout the year, really.

In April, we had a chance to break away for a crazy vacation: a cruise from Barcelona to Dubai! Here are some pictures:


Me, spreading cheer amongst the camels in Egypt.


Joe, reading Pete the Popcorn at the pyramids.


Stepping out of the van and seeing those pyramids in person was breathtaking… and worth every penny and minute spent to get there. Lets hope Egypt stabilizes, offering more of us the opportunity to see this amazing site.

As the summer commenced, we had a second book on the horizon:


We decided to release this book with a party, complete with food and drinks for all. This also turned into a Community Summer Book Swap, where we gave away over 5,000 used books to children for their summer reading.


Clipper the Comet is our second book, featuring the special bond between grandparents and grandchildren… and honoring rust-belt autoworkers.


Oh, yeah…. and we have the real car featured in the book, which makes promoting the book a blast!!


Many summer weekends were spent like this… signing books and meeting people at festivals and fairs.

Summer time drifted away quickly, though… as summertimes in Michigan and Northern Ohio tend to do. We did fit in some fun, though…


Our Annual Wig Party at Put-in-Bay was a real treat… if a little bit wild! Join us this year: Saturday, July 20th. The fun starts at 11:00 AM at Heineman’s Winery! Wigs required.


And there is always time to fit in my world famous bottle trick, right? Ahhhhh…. summer.

Of course, I’ll do anything for a quick buck. And I’m an ordained minister. So I fit in a few weddings this summer, as well:



After all of this, we extended our summer by heading out on our Encouragement Across America tour, promoting Pete the Popcorn!


Here we are in studio in Mobile, Alabama!


And me at Mount Rushmore… I didn’t even know it was on the Bucket List– and it’s already scratched off!


Halloween, my favorite Holiday, came and went… with me dressed as a pig.


The year wrapped up with a cruise… with about 13 very eclectic friends. It was one of the best times ever! In fact, this evening for New Year’s Eve, I’ll be meeting up with quite a few of them in Indianapolis for a mini-cruise reunion!

At the beginning of this post, I told you my New Year’s theory… I think tonight is going to be a great night. And you know what that means for 2013.

Happy New Year, everybody!




Thanks for visiting this blog! As you see, it is not supported by advertising. If you would like to personally support this blog and its authors, please visit Amazon to purchase our Children’s Book, Pete the Popcorn! If you don’t have a child in your life, donate a copy to your local school or library! Also, we LOVE it when people LIKE us on Facebook. To learn more about our books, please visit www.PeteThePopcorn.com 


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