Aunt Mary Buttons
Larry Red & Blue
Sept 99 "Jones has a unique, colourful way of relating to a child who is the victim of bullying."
Books in Canada
Ministry of Education
Literature by Canadian Authors
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Stories of hope for grieving and troubled young children written by raconteur writer, teacher, and children’s advocate, Diane Jarvis Jones, a.k.a. "The Button Lady". These unique art books have become collector’s items for button enthusiasts and a treasure trove for elementary art teachers. So has her art.
With a keen eye for fun, Jones creates large vibrant wall hangings made of recyclables. She also makes life sized beaded masks of famous personalities. Her wildly colorful exhibitions are hugely popular, and her massive Vancouver photojournalism displays fascinate audiences of all ages. As does her character.
Jones's professional side emerges in readings, slide presentations, workshops, and in her advocacy work for children and pet owners.
Diane Jarvis Jones, her art, her causes, and her books, have been widely featured on radio, national TV, and in the print media including national exposure in Saturday Night, Threads, and Arts and Crafts magazines. Maybe a wallflower in a previous life, but certainly not in this one, the highly quotable and tenacious Jones is determined to leave her mark in the big world of little art.
Murdoch McMurray ISBN 0-9699407-4-2
I normally do not care who walks up my street, but when I saw the neighbourhood bully, Murdoch McMurray, heading toward my house, I froze. Everyone knew if Murdoch's red hair was standing on end, you had better run for cover. Well, his hair looked to be jumping right off the top of his head. That's how steamed up he was. Instinctively, I flattened myself beside the front window. Murdoch McMurray was the biggest and meanest kid in our school, and he was not even big. He and I were the same size and same age, ten, but he fought hard, and his punch had snap, more like a grade sixer's.
Murdoch McMurray did not like me. He did not like anyone and he hit hard to prove it. Some kids tried making friends with him, but he soon beat them up. I knew you could not trust him. Teachers were not afraid of him, not like us kids. Teachers would let him go for a run on the track on days he was really cranky. Or shoot baskets. And they would give him drawing paper. He liked that. He even hummed when he coloured. He was a good drawer too, not that anyone said so. But out on the playground, he did not play with crayons. He played with fists. Last week he punched me in the face and I got heck for it. That made me mad. My dad won't let me fight, and guys like Murdoch know it. It's just not fair. And it's no fun going to school worrying about getting clobbered.
I was so busy thinking I almost did not see what I was seeing. Murdoch was not just walking down my street. He was walking down my street carrying a green garbage bag. And it was heavy. I could tell. He was not dragging the bag on the ground like a sack of potatoes either. He held it up like it was a plate of cookies.
But his face was scrunched up tight as a dishcloth, and he was crying. That bothered me--seeing him cry, but I had no idea why. It was weird. When he opened my gate, I made a fist. I could hear his footsteps coming closer and closer. He was so near I could hear him snivelling. As far as I knew, no one had ever heard Murdoch McMurray snivel before, and I can assure you, it is not a pretty thing to hear.
I could see Murdoch but he couldn't see me. I watched him struggle with the bag, saw him almost put it down, then saw him change his mind. The snivelling got louder. And louder. Then I heard my mom coming down the hall. She looked at me. I looked at her. I could tell she heard it too. Before I could stop her she opened the door.
"I didn't doooo iiiitt", wailed Murdoch, and he fell to the ground like a big clump of dirt. My mother pulled him up and rubbed his back. That bugged me. Murdoch kept saying he was sorry, and he blubbered on and on about a car and some birds. I had no idea what he was talking about so I just stood there, watching, waiting. But deep down it felt a little bit good, you know, watching him cry. He handed Mom the bag and she opened it. Out fell Socrates, our cat. He was dead. Mom let out a scream. And that's when I jumped on Murdoch McMurray. I hit him and hit him and hit him. I wanted to punch him inside out. We were all screaming. Murdoch. Mom. Me. That brought out Grampa and he starting yelling too. He pulled me off and yanked my arms behind my back, and held them way too tight. He looked at Murdoch, then at me.