In Which We Choose Paints for the Bus Mural and Robbi Discovers Her New Favorite Color
by Matthew
April 12, 2022

Yesterday we stopped by our local Sherwin-Williams to pick out paints for the bus mural.

Robbi had created a color palette, which she printed out and brought with us in hopes of finding colors that would match.

We needn’t have worried. The folks at Sherwin-Williams led us into the heart of the rainbow where we quickly found each rich and vibrant hue Robbi was looking for—including her new all-time-favorite, Obstinate Orange.

We also picked up some tape, some brushes and rollers, and a gallon of primer. And the most delicious, dark, and shiny black paint Robbi has ever encountered. We left happy and grateful and excited for the adventure ahead.

Next up, some light sanding and spot cleaning, followed by comprehensive priming. When that’s done, Robbi will roll up her sleeves and start doing the line work in anticipation of our public mural-painting event at HH Garnet Elementary School on May 6.

May be an image of text that says 'SANe:DOTE MAY 5To 7PM FIRST TH BehiNd GARNET ELEMENTARY 320 CALVERT ST. C-TOWN FRIDAY HELP PAINT THE MURAL! TOUR TOUR BUS! 0 MEET WHISPERER! BUS THE T'

We hope you’ll join us then!

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Recently:

The Busload of Books Tour is a year-long project to promote literacy and raise awareness of the challenges facing our nation’s public schools.

Author/illustrator duo Matthew Swanson and Robbi Behr (that’s us) and our four kids will spend the 2022-2023 school year traveling the country in a school bus/tiny home, visiting Title I schools in all 50 states (plus DC), and giving away 25,000 hardcover books to students and teachers from underserved communities.

As we travel, we will be blogging, vlogging and posting frequently to social media. All of our content will be appropriate for bringing families and students along on our ultimate road trip.

The latest on Instagram:

The Daily Minute: 12.9.22
In which, having just arrived in Texas, we plan to spend the night in Jasper County.

#busloadofbooks
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Robbi got this text from Erica Bridwell (known to friends and colleagues as “B”), the first-grade teacher who hosted Jasper during Tuesday’s visit to North Pike Elementary School in Summit, Mississippi. We signed a copy of Everywhere, Wonder for B, and Robbi had written in the dedication to “keep fighting the good fight.”
 
It’s a difficult time to be a teacher, especially at a school with limited resources and especially when serving kids who bring additional challenges to school. Educators need a boost every bit as much as their students do.
 
We’re sharing this to show that the tour is also for them, and maybe even more so. 
 
“We miss y’all! It felt like a part of us left when y’all did. Y’all have NO IDEA the impact you’re making not only on kids, but adults too! I haven’t had the easiest school year so far. I have felt defeated, frustrated, and overwhelmed. My connection with my students has felt faint and really nonexistent… I’ve struggled to find ways to motivate them, encourage them more… then y’all come along and somehow it has put fire back into me. Your words have made me reflect since I read them… “keep fighting the good fight…” it was powerful. I had that “full moon feeling” that feeling of how much I love what I do. I thought of what it means to me and what those kids mean to me. I remembered why God chose me to do this. Your kind words lifted me up. So thank you. Thank y’all. What y’all are doing is amazing! Safe travels! I’ll be following!”
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The Daily Minute: 12.8.22
In which we bask in the sweet Louisiana night and brace ourselves for the enormity of Texas.

#busloadofbooks
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Whoever you are, take your seat on the bus!

Our adventure is your adventure. Our country is your country, too. Follow along with us!