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Category: Featured

How do I get my kids to eat healthy snacks? Use a S.A.W.
How do I get my kids to eat healthy snacks? Use a S.A.W.

 
Often times we turn on the news or read an article about children developing unhealthy living habits that lead to a variety of health issues. The big one that catches our attention is the threat of obesity. As a result, we may feel the need to jump into action and “fix” the problem. So, we read articles on the web and overnight we put our kids on an eating regimen that has the unfortunate consequence of making healthy living feel like a chore. Word has it most kids hate to do their chores. As parents our efforts should be the exact opposite. Healthy living can be fun and simple! For now, we will explore healthy snack choices and joys of self-empowerment. Here are 3 easy tips using SAW formula or Snacks Available with Water: (more…)

CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST ONLY $9.99!
CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST ONLY $9.99!

GET CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST
ONLY $9.99 FOR A LIMITED TIME!

Does your New Year’s Resolution include getting healthier? Are you wondering how to get the rest of the family to make the right choices? Chunky and Friends is the best way to get your kids on board with your New Year’s Resolution. Jump-start the conversation about Health & Fitness today!
CHUNKY AND FRIENDS: CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST
On Sale Now for Only $9.99+SH!

Fox 45 Interviews Author of Chunky and Friends
Fox 45 Interviews Author of Chunky and Friends

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We want to thank everyone who has supported the Chunky and Friends team. Because of your love and support, we continue to work hard to bring Chunky and Friends to kids everywhere.  Bit by bit, we have been making strides to achieve our goals by sharing our book series at local schools, festivals and fairs.  This news broadcast was a big one for us and we have become more motivated to get the word out about the book series.  We firmly believe in what we are doing and am empowered by the idea of making a massive difference in the lives of millions of children/families.  We hope to inspire families with a message that will stay with them for their entire life.  Thank you again for your support. (more…)

Price Drop and New Kindle Version of CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST Available NOW!
Price Drop and New Kindle Version of CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST Available NOW!

Cover for Chunky and the O-Beast.  Click Image for more information.

Book synopsis:

Chunky is a 10-year-old boy who finds out that he is in danger of becoming obese. With his vivid imagination he confuses what was discussed during his doctor visit and believes he will soon transform into an “O-BEAST.” Can Chunky make sense of it all and stop the O-Beast from taking over?

Click the Paypal or Amazon logo below to buy
Chunky and Friends: Chunky and The O-Beast for only $11.99 + s&h.

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Also available on the Kindle for $4.99
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The Defeat The O-Beast Coloring & Activity Book is an adventure where kids help Chunky and his friends solve puzzles to defeat the villainous O-Beast.  The puzzles are all about physical play and healthy eating choices.  Pick it up for the crossword puzzles, word finds, connect the dots, coloring pages and more…

Also, the book has a Food and Active play journal where kids can keep tabs on their day to day habits.
An awesome resource for educators and physicians.

Click the Lulu.com logo below to buy
Chunky and Friends: Defeat The O-Beast (Coloring and Activity Book) for only $5.99 + s&h.

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Meeting acting U.S. Surgeon General, Boris Lushniak
Meeting acting U.S. Surgeon General, Boris Lushniak

2014-06-18 12.21.01-1Last Wednesday, I had the pleasure of attending a forum at the Washington Post called, Health Beyond Health Care. This was right in the Chunky and Friends’ wheelhouse because our goal is preventative health care by promoting healthy habits in children.  I had the opportunity to introduce Chunky and Friends to many in attendance including acting US Surgeon General Rear Adm. Boris Lushniak.  Dr. Lushniak was very excited about Chunky and Friends and saw it as a great idea, I believe he saw the impact that it could have on children.  I am grateful he took the time to speak to me and hear my vision for Chunky and Friends.

All of the speakers were extremely insightful and it’s always wonderful to hear the success people are having in instilling healthy habits in their communities.

Here is a link with clips from the forum:

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/post-live-live/liveblog/washington-post-live-health-beyond-health-care/

 

Jamon Kids write a Chunky & Friends Inspired Book
Jamon Kids write a Chunky & Friends Inspired Book

 

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Earlier this year, I had the opportunity to conduct a reading at Jamon Montessori School in Silver Spring, Maryland.  I had toyed with the idea of creating a writing workshop  in which I would sit with a group of children and walk them through the process of writing a story.  After sharing my thoughts with the school’s Director, Lisa Miller, it became clear she wanted to take this idea a step further and have the children write and publish a book that they could take home with them for the summer.

Working with the four children (three second graders and a first grader) who were eager about writing, was a blast! . I kept the process simple by teaching the kids a basic three act structure that included the Set-up, Climax and Conclusion. In addition, there were three criteria for the young writers on this  project, 1.They had to work together 2. The story had to be health and/or fitness based and  3. They had to use characters from the Chunky and Friends book series.  Much to the Director and my satisfaction, the children delivered a book titled, “Attack of the Bad Health Elf,” written and colored by MMAC (Maya, Melvin, Alex and Canady) and illustrated by their resident artist, Mr. Monte.

Check out the images below.

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Chunky and Friends @GBurgBookFest!
Chunky and Friends @GBurgBookFest!

Chunky And Friends made its festival debut at the Gaithersburg Book Festival on Saturday May 17th. It was an amazing experience and we had an extremely successful outing. We sold out of books!  Along with meeting some wonderful authors we encountered some new and old fans of Chunky And Friends.  I wanted to write and show gratitude to the staff and volunteers at the Gaithersburg Book Festival.

Please enjoy the photos we took at the Gaithersburg Book Festival.

– Joseph, author/creator of Chunky and Friends

 

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We had a blast @GburgBookFest more pics to come! #DefeatTheOBeast!

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The #ChunkyAndFriends booth @GburgBookFest! #defeattheobeast

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This was another vendor @GburgBookFest. Gail Webber has a book called, Time of the Cats. That’s her friend Kelly on her left. She was our booth neighbor to the right. Very kind and helpful.

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Phone Break! @GburgBookFest #chunkyandfriends #defeattheobeast

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Joseph Vivens and #AndrewZettler author of The Teeniest Tiniest Yawn @GburgBookFest. He was our booth neighbor as well. #defeattheobeast #chunkyandfriends

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I’m so fortunate to have such beautiful people in my life. My wife and sister after a great day @GburgBookFest. #chunkyandfriends #defeattheobeast #dslr #childhoodobesity

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@winktv and my gorgeous #Wife @GburgBookFest. My wife is 1 in a googol. I dare anyone to challenge my math. We had so much fun meeting kids who were familiar with #chunkyandfriends and those who were not. I am Grateful for all who visited. #defeattheobeast

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Down to the last book @GburgBookFest yesterday. That’s the face of happy author about to be sold out. #defeattheobeast #chunkyandfriends #childhoodobesity

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My sister @winktv was so awesome @GburgBookFest. She is AMAZING. She’s holding some of the #chunkyandfriends scream signs we gave the kids who came by our booth. One requirement: They had to scream. I’d like to publicly apologize to parents who had to hear their children scream on the ride home. With that said, ChunkyAndFriends.com #defeattheobeast

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That’s Gail and I at the end of the day. #chunkyandfriends #defeattheobeast

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Our table @GburgBookFest yesterday. Make sure you visit ChunkyAndFriends.com to learn more about #chunkyandfriends #defeattheobeast

@ClintonFdn’s Closing the Gap: Childhood Obesity Forum
@ClintonFdn’s Closing the Gap: Childhood Obesity Forum

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Last Thursday I had the opportunity to attend a forum sponsored by the Clinton Foundation, RWJF and GHI.  It was an awesome event that included a lively discussion on what is needed to curb the rise in childhood obesity rates.  I had the opportunity to meet some remarkable people who are doing very exciting things to ensure that the future of the world is brighter and healthier.

Amongst the many people in attendance I had the pleasure of meeting the Today Show’s Joy Bauer, who complimented me on my smile.  Thanks for that, Joy!  Sadly, I didn’t think to snap a celfie’ (yes, that is selfie) with her.  Visit her site for nutrition tips and great recipes: www.joybauer.com

I met actor and entrepreneur Wendell Pierce of The Wire and Treme fame (my wife would throw in Waiting to Exhale as well).  You should definitely support Sterling Farms if you are in the New Orleans area; they are placing healthy options in the heart of the food deserts in the 9th Ward. Visit their site for more info: sterlingfreshfoods.com

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I also had the privilege to eat lunch with former Surgeon General Dr. Richard Carmona and the Deputy Chief Medical Officer for the American Heart Association, Dr. Eduardo Sanchez.  If you ever catch them together ask them about two things: 1) Hurricane Katrina and 2) What is the significance of Ice Cream?  Believe me you won’t regret it.

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Here are some organizations that caught my attention and I think deserve your support:

Go Noodle is an organization that provide an online program that allow kids classroom breaks to do short exercises as a “reset” from their day to day lessons.  I had an awesome conversation with the founder Scott about ways to inspire and encourage children to fulfill healthy goals. Visit their site: GoNoodle.com

 

Girl Trek is a non-profit organization that uses walking as a way to encourages physical activity amongst African American women. One of the co-founders, Morgan, was a panelist who was very inspiring with her wealth of knowledge and experience.  Visit their site: GirlTrek.org

Finally, Snider Hockey is a non-profit by the Ed Snider Youth Hockey Foundation.  I was fortunate to meet Jan who spoke passionately about the program and how they introduce urban youth in Philadelphia to hockey.  Visit their site: esyhf.org

Overall, it was an awesome even and I encourage you to check out the videos below and joint the conversation.  Hop on twitter and keep the hashtag #KidsHealthMatters alive.

Coloring & Activity Book AVAILABLE NOW!
Coloring & Activity Book AVAILABLE NOW!

Hey Everyone, thank you for all the love and support of Chunky and Friends.  We truly appreciate you!
Over the last 6 months, the Vivens Media Group has been very busy.  We have been conducting live interactive readings and writing workshops at various schools in Maryland and DC.  It’s been AWESOME!  In addition, we have been working on our next book, which takes Chunky and friends on crazy adventures which are completely different from anything we’ve done with the characters thus far.  I know that kids and adults will love it, so stay tuned.  Finally, we’ve been preparing the release of our activity book which we are proud to present to you today:

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The Defeat The O-Beast Coloring & Activity Book is full of adventures where kids help Chunky and friends solve puzzles to defeat the villainous O-Beast.  The puzzles are all about physical play and healthy eating choices.  Pick it up for the crossword puzzles, word finds, connect the dots, coloring pages and more…

Also, the book has a Food and Active play journal where kids can keep tabs on their day to day habits.
An awesome resource for educators and physicians for only $5.99.

The activity book is a wonderful companion piece to the book, CHUNKY AND FRIENDS: CHUNKY AND THE O-BEAST available now!

Click here to purchase the Defeat The O-Beast Coloring & Activity Book.

I do hope you enjoy the book and thank you again for all the support!

Chunky and Friends at St. Martins of Tours
Chunky and Friends at St. Martins of Tours

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On Thursday, October 17, 2013 I had the opportunity to read Chunky and The O-Beast to the kids at St. Martin’s of Tours in Gaithersburg, MD.  Although I’ve done smaller readings this was by far the largest group and the kids were amazing!  They ranged from PreK-8th grade.  The reading with the 6-8th grade class concluded with a Q&A session about the writing and artistic process.  Thankfully, the book illustrator Jose Dominguez was available to answer questions about drawing the artwork.

The kids were completely engaged in the content, the message and the art.  We received praised from Principal Andrew Piotrowski for an enthusiastic reading that opened the conversation about healthy eating & building self-confidence.  Also, Mr. Piotrowski took the opportunity speak after the reading to reinforce the main themes of the book in the context of the schools principles.

Words cannot do justice for the amount of fun we had so please, check out the images from the St. Martin of Tours website by clicking this link (my favorite is the look of shock on the kids faces): https://smsmd.org/visit-from-author-joe-vivens/

We have other school readings scheduled and will share images and links as they become available.  If you’re interested in having me and the illustrator come out for a reading and Q&A, contact us.

Finally, I want to thank the students, faculty and staff of St. Martin’s for being gracious hosts and a spectacular audience.

– JV