About Me

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Barbara Techel is the author of the multi-award winning Frankie, the Walk ‘N Roll Dog book series. When her dachshund, Frankie, suffered a spinal injury, Barbara had her custom-fitted for a wheelchair. Frankie persevered, and Barbara realized the beautiful opportunity she had to share Frankie and give others hope and inspiration to be the best they can be. Along with sharing Frankie’s story with children, Barbara and Frankie routinely volunteer as a therapy dog team at a local hospital, senior assisted facility, and hospice community, spreading joy wherever they go.

Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Frankie with Official Mascot Sumi of the Vancouver Olympics!

My friends in Canada, teacher Karen, and all her students will be following the Olympics as it kicks off in Vancouver for 2010!

The paralympics will be part of the Olympics, along with special mascots, Sumi, Quatchi and Muk-Muk. Sumi is especially fond of the paralympics! Woo hoo!! Do check out their website to learn all about them and play games with them!! As a special gift to me, Karen sent me Sumi so we could have a picture taken together! So we sent a few pictures of me and Sumi at the park on this gloriously beautiful fall day today... as you can see in this post. Oh, what fun! Here is a little bit about Sumi:

Sumi is an animal spirit who lives in the mountains of British Columbia. Like many Canadians, Sumi's background is drawn from many places. He wears the hat of the orca whale, flies with the wings of the mighty thunderbird and runs on the strong furry legs of the black bear.
Sumi’s name comes from the Salish word “Sumesh” which means “guardian spirit.” Sumi takes his role very seriously. He works hard to protect the land, water and creatures of his homeland. Sumi is a great fan of the Paralympic Games. He’s determined to learn all the sports, so he can play and race with his animal friends all winter long.

Transformation is a common theme in the art and legend of West Coast First Nations. Transformation represents the connection and kinship between the human, animal and spirit world. Revered animals, such as the orca whale, the bear and the thunderbird, are depicted in transformation through masks, totems and other forms of art. The orca is the traveller and guardian of the sea. The bear often represents strength and friendship. And the thunderbird — which creates thunder by flapping its wings — is one of the most powerful of the supernatural creatures.

I think Sumi is a perfect friend for me and I'm so glad Karen sent him to me! You can even take the quiz to see which mascot you are most like... and yup, you guessed it, I was just like Sumi!! Arf-a-roo!!


Monday, September 28, 2009

Coming Soon!! Virtual Classroom Visits with Frankie, the Walk 'N Roll Dog!

Ok, so I don't know alot about technology, but my mom tells me that we will soon be offering Skype presentations to schools! Wow, can you believe it? It is the newest, and up to date way of bringing an author (and rolling dog!) into your classroom! So be sure to tell your teachers you want to see me, the rolling dog, on the overhead screen or Smartboard in your classroom. It will be so much fun to meet new kids across the country and share my message of hope and inspiration!
Click here to read what Karen Keys, District Media Specialist for school in Canada, had to say about our pilot Skype session with her students.

So be sure and stay tuned to my blog for our big launch or sign up for my updates on our website! Arf-a-roo! Can't wait to meet all of you soon!!


Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Frankie's Activity Workbook Now Available as E-Book!

Whew, my mom sure keeps me busy... well, ok, she does let me have lots of naps too.
I'm excited to announce my activity book is now available as a E-book! How cool is that? All you have to do is go to our website store, and add the E-book version to the cart. Once you purchase it, the computer does all this behind the scenes fancy work, and with the shake of a dachshund's tail, you get an email notice in your inbox and you can instantly download my E-book. You can print all at once, or print one page a day to do as a fun activity.
Enjoy & have fun!!


Sunday, September 20, 2009

Going on Vacation!!

I love, love, love vacation... and I love it even more when I get to go along with my mom, papa and Kylie!! So, I won't be blogging for a few days. Going up to the "northwoods" to stay in a cozy cabin. Can't wait to find squirrel and bunnies, oh yeah! I promise I won't hurt them, just chase after them... won't they be surprised to see a dog on wheels! Arf-a-roo!

See ya when I return!!


How God Made Dachshunds

Another poem by Julie Wrigley Smith. Thank you to friend, Jerry (Dad to Clarence the dachsie), of Dachshund Delights for sending this to us and correcting us that it is Julie, not Julia.

How God Made Dachshunds
God made a little dachsie to brighten up our day
He took a bit of sunshine, laughter, love and play
and rolled it up in a sausage shape just right for a hug,
with bright eyes full of mischief set in its little mug.
With little paws a pattering to take it here and there and a cold wet nose-
but then he thought, "Oh, what about the hair?"
Shall I make it long and silky, or wiry, that's so sweet, or make it simple, and have it smooth and satiny and neat?
And what about the color?
How can I pick just one?
Shall it be black, or red or brown or dappled, just for fun?"
He pondered while He made the world, Ann all creatures great and small-
And then the answer came to Him-
"OF COURSE! I'll make them ALL!"
So remember that a dachshund is special from above-
His coat of many colors is a sign of God's great Love.
~Julie Wrigley Smith


Saturday, September 19, 2009

Amazing Grace, the Two-legged Kitty!

I love kitties... honest, I really do!! Wait till you see this amazing kitty!



Wednesday, September 16, 2009

I'm Still Your Dog poem

Ok, friends, this is a arf-a-roo of a poem I must share with you! My mom especially likes this poem and always turns into a mush bucket when she reads it... guess it makes her think of me... and cause she loves me so much, she gets all sappy. Oh mom!

I'm Still Your Dog

Because I'm "just a dog" you see, I don't sigh and say, "why me?" I just face it- go on livin' and play the hand that I've been given.

I need you more now, that is true, for there are things I just can't do. The ball you throw I can't catch- I can't even lift my leg to scratch.

It's embarrassing a little- that I may need your help to piddle. But if our roles they were reverse, I'd be proud to be your nurse.

But hey, I love you more than ever. Me, give up? Well yeah, like never. I don't regret what cannot be- with you my friend, I'll just me me!

I'm still me within my soul where it counts, I still am whole. My back is bent and I'm quite lame, but in my heart I'm still the same.

by Julia Wrigley Smith


Thursday, September 3, 2009

An Audio Preview of Frankie, the Walk 'N Roll Therapy Dog Visits Libby's House

Today is the day my mom meets with Victoria Kay Lieffring for final changes to the illustrations for my new book to debut in Jan. 2010. Arf-a-roo! So Mom and I wanted to share a little gift with you and have you listen to a snippet of our new book... we hope you will like it. We'd love to hear your thoughts!!

Or visit our website to click and listen right on your computer (new book is 3rd one down on page)

Tuesday, September 1, 2009

Frankie Donates $325 to Handicapped Pets Foundation!

Hot-diggity dog and a big, big thank you to everyone who helped me raise awareness and money for Handciapped Pets during the month of August!
It was my birthday in August and I thought what better way to celebrate than to try and help out someone else... so I put my little head to thinking and decided to bring more positive awareness to animals with disabilities.
I asked if you could help out by following me via twitter, my blog, sign up on our website, or follow me on Facebook and to forward the message on... in doing so you helped me raise $325.00 for Handicapped Pets Foundation!!
How fun it was to hit the send button with my little paw this morning and send the money to Handicapped Pets Foundation to help an animal in need... and all of you helped me, so thank you for the bottom of my heart!!!