5Q :: New book an ode to big sisters everywhereMeet Heather Hashey, a local author who tackles a subject she holds close to her heart: her kids.
Today I’d like to introduce you to Heather Hashey, a local author who tackles a subject she holds close to her heart: her kids. Hashey recently released the picture book “I’m a Big Sister,” and we were on the scene (so to speak) to help get the word out:
Budgeteer: What inspired this book? Was it how your kids interacted with one another?
Hashey: Before I had my son, my husband and I were worried about how my daughter would react. I had heard so many stories about jealousy and behavioral problems when bringing in a new baby. We were relieved to see that my daughter immediately claimed him as her baby brother and enjoyed helping “Mommy” and “Daddy” take care of him. We never had any of the issues we heard about; our children have a very strong bond. I was definitely inspired by their relationship.
Who took the pictures for this book? And, in an age where almost every book for kids is illustrated, why did you decide to go for photos?
My mother-in-law, Kim Hashey, actually did the photography for the book. I chose to use photos for a few reasons: First, I cannot draw! Second, I wanted to show the real bond that they have, and that could only be captured in pictures. It’s one thing to tell the story, but actually seeing it makes it real.
I also wanted to preserve these moments for my children to see in the future.
I know that this is your first published book, but I was wondering what kind of stories you had written before this. All fiction? And what kind of genres?
I began writing stories when I was very young. I would often write about families and pets, or people in school. I generally wrote about things that were happening in my life, but I did do some science fiction as well. One story that I had written — about a monster that destroyed a city but then apologized and helped to rebuild it — was published in a small collection of works by students from area schools.
Do you have any siblings? If so, at what point did they become something meaningful in your life and not just, you know, mom’s other kids?
I have two brothers, a sister, two stepsisters and two stepbrothers. My younger brother was six years my junior, so I always felt I needed to protect him. I didn’t really have a strong connection with my younger sister until I was about 15 and we both went through some pretty hard times. We needed each other for support. We’ve had our disagreements and problems, but we still have a very strong bond. I became close with my older brother when I was living in Las Vegas when I was 17. We’ve had a great relationship since then. My stepsister, whose name is also Heather, is one of my closest friends. We met when I was 9 and she was 18. We have always been pretty close, but, now that we both have kids, we get together as often as life allows. My stepbrothers and other stepsister live in different parts of the country, but we try to stay in touch.
Finally, of all the options for families in Duluth, what is your favorite activity in the area that everyone can enjoy?
My kids love the Duluth Children’s Museum and the Depot. We also visit the Lakewalk and Leif Erickson Park pretty frequently. Canal Park is great for walking and playing in the water. It’s so much fun to watch the boats.