Posted by: Kathy Temean | October 24, 2021

Book Giveaway: MEENA’S MINDFUL MOMENT by Tina Athaide

Tina Athaide has written a new picture book, MEENA’S MINDFUL MOMENT, illustrated by Åsa Gilland and published by Page Street Kids. Coming out in November. PSK’s has agreed to share a copy with one lucky winner living in the United States and Canada.

All you have to do to get in the running is leave a comment. Reblog, tweet, or talk about it on Facebook with a link and you will get additional chances to win. Just let me know other things you do to share the good news, so I can put the right amount of tickets in my basket for you.

Sharing on Facebook, Twitter or reblogging really helps spread the word for a new book. So, thanks for helping Tina and Åsa.

If you have signed up to follow my blog and it is delivered to you everyday, please let me know when you leave a comment and I will give you an extra ticket. Thanks!


Meena is excited to visit Dada and explore all the exciting sights and sensations of his home with him. But Meena has so much energy, it becomes a whole imaginary character she calls her hurly-burly hullabaloo. Wherever Meena goes, her hurly-burly hullabaloo goes too. Together they’re never calm, as they run and cartwheel and make a lot of noise!

But when Meena makes a mess, her grandfather is there to teach her how to handle it with deep breaths and meditative poses―after all, he has a hurly-burly hullabaloo too.

With playful art and engaging characters (real and imagined), this charming story all about mindfulness will be wonderfully relatable to anyone with a rambunctious hurly-burly hullabaloo of their own.


The idea for this story started with my students.  I wanted a character that reflected some of their own experiences in a way that would make my students feel okay about themselves. Once I knew what I wanted to write about, the inspiration for the setting came  from my childhood. Meena’s grandfather is based on my own grandfather. When I was six, my family visited Goa, India. In the afternoons, my grandfather would take me for a walk through the village and we’d visit some of the same places that Meena goes with her grandfather. If I’m quite honest, I think I brought my own imaginary hurly-burly hullabaloo on those walks and Grandpa patiently welcomed it on our adventures.

Once the seed was planted in my head, I had to nurture the story and let it grow. When I finally sat down to write and through the revision process, the story changed many, many times. One version even had snow and another coconut snowflakes. But through it all, the one thing that remained the same was the grandfather and the three places he and Meena visit.

I am very lucky to have an agent, Andrea Cascardi, who also has editorial experience. She is my biggest champion while at the same time pushing me to produce my best work. She read the different versions and it was after one of our conversations that I had the inspiration for the imaginary character–Meena’s Hurly-burly hullabaloo. Now, I cannot imagine the story without that character.

This story took me just over a year to write, so when it was accepted for publication, there were minor edits that really didn’t change the story. This meant we could start diving into the next steps. I was incredibly lucky to work with such an amazing team at Page Street. This is my first experience publishing a picture book and the team at Page Street have been incredible and included me in every step along the way.

Our biggest challenge proved to be finding an illustrator. I appreciated that they didn’t rush this process.  They sent me sample art and portfolios of potential artists and really considered my opinions. We had three artists that ended up not working out either because they already had too many projects or didn’t feel they were right for the project.  When they showed me Asa’s work, I fell completely in love with her style and design, and was over the moon when she said YES!  The whole process took over six months, which also meant that the date of publication had to be changed.

I am often asked where I find my ideas for books. I like to think of my ideas as little fireflies. They appear with a bright sparkle that catches  my attention and doesn’t let go. That doesn’t necessarily mean, I drop everything and write, but the seed is planted. Honestly, writers are also observers of people and life in general.  I get ideas from my students, from events in day to day life. I love that moment when something I see or hear or remember stirs my imagination.


Tina Athaide was born in Entebbe. After leaving Uganda she immigrated with her family to Canada from England. She has been a teacher for thirty years. Believing that books can present different experiences to children in an organic, natural way, she started publishing early literacy readers for the educational market before her debut book, Orange For The Sunsets. The MG book is a Junior Library Guild Selection and is nominated for a Silver Birch award by the Forest of Reading program in Canada.

Tina Athaide was born in Uganda and grew up in London and Canada. While her family left Entebbe just prior to the expulsion, she has memories of refugee family and friends staying with them in their London home. The stories and conversations she listened to through the years became the inspiration for her book Orange for the Sunsets. Tina now lives in California with her husband, Ron, and their daughter, Isabella.

Represented by Andrea Cascardi at TransAtlantic Agency.

Tina Athaide – She is a reading resource specialist, and in 1997 was recognized by the International Reading Association for her outstanding contribution in the field of reading. Tina is the author of Pran’s Week of AdventureAt the Firehouse with DadYum, Apples! and Flora’s Box, all published by Bebop Books. When she is not writing, Tina enjoys gardening, playing the piano, and practicing yoga. She lives in Temecula, California, with her husband and their beagle, Casper.

People can connect with me at:


Twitter: @tathaide

Instagram: tinaathaide

Pinterest: tinaathaide


Åsa Gilland is a Swedish illustrator who loves all things retro, quirky imagery and folk art themes. I studied interior design at Accademia Italiana Moda and have 20 years of experience in surface design and illustration. I produce art for stationary, textiles, home decor and the gift market.

If you have inquiries, wish to collaborate, are interested in licensing or commissioning art, please get in touch with my agent, Lilla Rogers at:

Åsa loves all things retro, quirky imagery and folk art themes. She studied interior design at Accademia Italiana Moda and has 20 years of experience in surface design and illustration. She produces art for stationary, textiles, home decor and the gift market. Now she has added children’s picture books to her list of successes.



Tina, thank you for sharing your new book, Meena’s Mindful Moment and your journey with it. This book is so much fun. Children will love reading about Meens’s energy and the imaginary character she calls her hurly-burly hullabaloo. Asa’s illustrations have so much movement that you can feel all the energy and chaos they cause together. I love that her Grandfather is there to teach her how to handle all her excess energy with deep breathing and meditative poses―after all, he has a hurly-burly hullabaloo too. What a great way to teach children how to stay calm. Asa’s illustrations are perfect for this book. I love all of the books she illustrates. Good luck with Meena’s Mindful Moment!

Talk tomorrow,



  1. Cute.


  2. what a lovely idea for a book


  3. What a beautiful book! Look forward to reading.


  4. I love this quote—”writers are also observers of people and life in general.” and I believe it to be true. I’m always listening, observing, and wondering! This book looks lovely! (I tweeted, followed both on Twitter and Instagram, and promoted their book in my stories on Instagram and FB-twice!)


  5. This looks like a wonderful book. Great illustrations! This book could make a great deal of difference for a lot of kids. Thanks for the review. I follow your blog by email.


  6. What a delightful concept! I would love a copy of this book. I tweeted, posted on FB, and reblogged the post.


  7. Reblogged this on Darlene Beck-Jacobson and commented:
    Leave a a comment on Kathy Temean’s blog for a chance to win a copy of this delightful book!


  8. Kids will definitely relate to Meena and her grandfather’s “hurly-burly hulabaloos. The illustrations are very engaging, too. Congratulations Tina and Åsa!

    (I tweeted and I get your blog daily.)


  9. Gorgeous book! Congratulations!


  10. Congrats, Tina and Åsa! Mindfulness is such an important lesson for kids (and grownups).

    I’m signed up for the emails, too.


  11. I love the theme of Meena’s Mindful Moment! Having been a teacher for 30 years, I’m familiar with all of those wigglers full of energy who need help in finding mindfulness. The illustrations are gorgeous and appealing and will enchant young children. Congratulations, Tina and Asa!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I would love to win this one, it looks fabulous!!

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Congratulations Tina. What an incredible idea for a book. As a teacher, too, I understand the need to share stories with children about their own hulla-baloos. So humorous and insightful. Plan to post on my Facebook and Twitter page. Hope to share this book with my own students.

    Liked by 1 person

  14. What a beautiful book! I would love to share it with my students! I tweeted about it and also get your blog.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. What an engaging text and art! Thanks for sharing (newsletter subscriber).

    Liked by 1 person

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