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Tuesday, February 2, 2016

The CanDos Bring A Book To Life Tour 2016

We kicked off our Bring A Book To Life Tour on January 16th at Mukilteo Elementary.  It was our first public reading of our very first bedtime tale “The Tree that I Am”.  We arrived ready to read for 3 classrooms and ended up reading to 6 different rooms with an invitation to come back for the 3rd grade classes and the kindergartners, the following week.

I have to admit, I was a bit nervous about how the kids would react, if they would like the story or understand it.  If they would be too cool to enjoy the puppets or just plain not interested in Billie and I.  After all, this is a story that I have loved for years and it was my first time sharing it with the audience that it was create for.

As we sat down to read, it all fell into place, the music and sound of Candy’s voice coming through the speaker, watching her come to life as she read my words, seeing butterflies come off the page and the kids laughing and gasping as our book came to life.  It was priceless!

The atmosphere at Mukilteo Elementary and the community they are creating with the kids there is so positive and respectful.  They teach the kids 7 habits that are aligned with our values and beliefs about raising and nurturing children and we are excited to create a partnership with this school that will last for years to come.

Thank you to the Dean and Staff for allowing us to share our story.  It was the most humbling and rewarding experience.  The feedback was overwhelmingly positive and we can’t wait to return and share our CanDo message.

Hj Sharpe

Monday, January 25, 2016

Introducing The Cast

Introducing The Cast. 

We met the first Sunday of the New Year.  The cast of "Here Come the CanDos".  The people that would give voice to the beloved characters we have spent 5 plus years developing, they were actually sitting in my living room.  As we started introductions to my left sat Dr. William Scott, whose academic credentials and experience performing in the theater absolutely had me absolutely gitty, he couldn't be more perfect for Professor Sharpe.  To Dr. Bill's left was James Burchfield, A.K.A. AudioPoet, a beat boxing phenomenon, with a spirit to match, for our sweet Clarence, at one point in the script James broke out in the what can only be described as the most amazing sound.  Next came Cherry "Boone" O'Neil, her resume and legendary family history was inspiring and captivating, her background in writing and performing and her ability to sing, along with her cheery nature make her a perfect fit for our dear Nana.  Then the amazing EriAm sisters, Haben Abraham as Candy and Selina Abraham as Cookie, I couldn't help but pinch myself.  These sisters create the most beautiful sound when they sing.  They are seasoned veterans at such a young age and their voices have taken them all around the world to perform with the most talent musicians and producers in the industry.  
I sat surrounded by greatness, wanting to shrink as each person spoke up about who they were and all of the amazing things that they had accomplished, by the time they got back around I was full of such a great sense of humility and gratitude that I could barely contain myself.  All of this talent had shown up to be a part of something that was only a dream a few short years ago. To watch our creation come to life through the voice of these talented artists was a great gift and we are looking forward to sharing the journey with all of you!

The CanDos

Thursday, November 19, 2015

Announcing our second cast member!!!




Cherry O'Neill is the voice of Nana CanDo!!!!

As the oldest daughter of the legendary crooner Pat Boone, Cherry grew up singing and performing with her sisters. In the 1970's, The Boone sisters released several albums and reached the billboard charts twice. Her family also appeared in numerous variety TV shows and holiday specials, including 4 ABC Pat Boone Family specials in the late 70's. Cherry is an accomplished author, with a book on the NY Times bestseller list in the early 80's, appeared as an on-air host of the Seattle Easter Seal Telethon for 15 years, and is a talented creator. If you're lucky, you can see her perform live on the Seattle-Eastside theater scene. We are blessed to announce Cherry's addition to our cast as our magical, no nonsensical, Nana. Please help us welcome Cherry to the cast as Clara CanDo!!!

Visit Cherry's youtube page to learn more about her
Or go to Wikipedia page and read all about her

Wednesday, November 4, 2015

CanDo casting is almost complete!!!

CanDo casting is almost complete!!!

To celebrate we are officially announcing our cast!!

Stay tuned to see who is coming to The CanDos!!!

Haben Abraham is the voice of Candy CanDo.

Haben is the youngest of the EriAm Sisters.  The group gained fame in 2009 when they appeared on America’s Got Talent, Pierce Morgan called them the future and the next Destiny’s Child.  At the age of 12, Haben wrote a song called “Diary” that was never released however after it was leaked, it made it to number one on Hot Radio 105.7 Atlanta for 5 consecutive weeks.  Recently appearing along side her sisters and David Foster performing for the Foster Foundation, Haben is traveling the world and living her dream.  We are blessed to have such an amazing talent starring as our little sweetheart Candy CanDo.

Thursday, May 7, 2015

Mom, Mommy, Mama, Mother…
The caregiver, the comforter, the advice giver, the cheerleader, the taxi driver, the washer and dryer, the head chef, the diaper changer, the nurse practitioner, the nose blower, the fashion consultant, the party planner, the maid, the Santa, the Tooth Fairy and the Easter Bunny… the list goes on and on. As diverse as our roles, you will not find two mothers alike. 

A mother is more than just the person that carries you around for 9 months and births you. A mother is anyone who exemplifies and embodies love for those under her care. Nurturing and raising kids isn't a birthright, it’s a gift! So to all the mothers out there, Happy Mother's Day from the CanDos to you!!!

Thursday, February 26, 2015


As I was perusing the Internet this morning, I came across an article on fire safety.  After completing "Jack Be Nimble" video short, I thought I would give it a read.  

I was shocked to find that 1 in 10 people will experience a house fire in their lifetime and that over 3,000 people lose their lives to house fires in the United States of America every year.  One in ten?  There are 6 of us in my immediate family, and now our oldest is in love and starting a family, that makes 8!  Then add all of my siblings and their offspring and don't forget the grandparents!  That's a total of 34. 
Odds are that at least 3 of the people that I love will experience a house fire at some point in their lives.  What can I do?  Spread awareness! 

Thursday, February 19, 2015

Overcoming Fears

Recently I went to watch my next neighbor teach swim lessons to toddlers.  Not only was I shocked and amazed at her confidence and resolution as she continued to calmly  rotate screaming kids in and out of the pool, I was mesmerized, traumatized and completely emotionally exhausted by the time I left the water sports parking lot.

I started to think about fear and how we deal with our children's feelings.  Do we indulge their fears, do we release them screaming into the water, or is there a middle ground?  
The truth of what I witnessed is that the kids all had a moment of acceptance and eventually learned to swim.  Was the fear still there? Yes, definitely, but with each little triumph you could see a glimmer confidence replace the fear in their eyes.

As a sat there, lesson after lesson and talked to the parents, I wondered if I could have handed over my child as she begged for her life not to let her go.  All of the feedback was the same, the kids left with a feeling of accomplishment, the parents left confident that if their child ever fell into a pool or lake, they would survive and I left emotionally drained questioning my beliefs about pushing kids through fear.

I realized after I left with much soul searching, I don't think I could  have handed over my screaming child. I have complete respect for the swim coach and the parents who chose this program.  I, however, prefer a more natural approach where we allow our kids to face their fears at their own pace with a gentle nudge.  Both styles come from a place of support and love with valid reasoning behind the choices.  Everyone has their own style of learning and every parent has their own ideas about how to raise children, what I took away from the experience was that  no matter your parenting style, teaching our children to face their fears, is a great way to build their confidence.

Friday, February 13, 2015

Underestimating our Youth.

I believe in our future.  The kids growing up today are exposed to so much information at such a quick pace and they are learning faster than ever.  I believe that our children are capable of so much more than what we ask of them most of the time.  Their brains are little sponges, eager to soak up new knowledge and they are at a phase in their lives where they are so eager to please and want to know everything. 

Have you ever had a conversation with a preschooler when the only word out of their mouth is "why?" You answer, they reply "why?" You answer again. Again you are met with an inquisitive "why?"  This game could go on for hours. Why?  Because kids have a natural desire to learn.

This is a great time to teach them as much as we can.  The only limit is when the child isn't interested.  So our job is to make learning fun and exciting and to continue to feed their insatiable desire to learn.  

Thursday, February 5, 2015

Learning made easy with Music.

Some days I can barely remember my own phone number, but ask me to sing a popular song that I haven’t heard in 20 years and I can remember every line.  Music is a great way to learn and memorize information.  It is an enjoyable process with no stress or pressure, just a fun way to develop a new skill. 

Who remembers School House Rock?  I learned all about American History and English Grammar from a Saturday morning cartoon short but I can tell you the purpose of a conjunction and I know how a bill becomes a law.  I know that an “interjection, shows excitement, or emotion.  They’re generally set apart from a sentence, by an exclamation point, or by a comma when the feeling’s not as strong.”

Studies have shown that using music as a teaching tool enhances learning and memorization.  Music nourishes the brain while affecting all areas of development, including strengthen listening skills, language and phonic awareness, and encourages participation.  In addition to calming and helping the mind focus, music can create feelings of general well being.

So if music makes learning easy and fun, then I suggest that we embrace it.  Dust off our dancing shoes, turn up the volume and encourage our kids to get moving to the rhythm of knowledge!

Thursday, January 29, 2015

The SeaHawks are CanDos!

I have never really been a huge football fan but growing up and living back here in Seattle the past few years, how could I NOT be a Seahawks fan?
Talk about a belief system in action!  They are a fantastic example of the CanDo mentality.  Working hard with focus, but most of all believing in themselves and their team!

My new found passion for this team far exceeds their football skills on the field and in fact, it was fostered before they were crowned champions last year. Back in 2013, I was privileged to participate at WeDay (  They needed dancers for the show and we were honored to be a part of such an incredible positive movement for our youth.  It was an amazing day. 
The kids danced with MC Hammer and Kid President, took photos with Magic Johnson and Nelly Furtado and led the crowd of 15,000 in the WeDay Dance.  

Sometime during the day, Pete Carol was brought to the stage along with Russell Wilson, Richard Shernan, Russell Okung and John Moffitt.  That is when I learned that coach Carol and the Seahawks were responsible for bringing WeDay to the United States and Seattle.  That was it, that was the day I became a super fan.

To be a true champion you must give back.  For me, Pete Carol and his team were champions long before they ever brought home that Super Bowl trophy!

So after last weeks championship game, the CanDos got together and decided to pay homage to their favorite team and their incredible come back!  
For for information on WeDay please visit their site.