Friday, 26 December 2014

Boxing Day shopping? No way!

My mom left the house REALLY early this morning to go meet Grandma. I think I heard her alarm at like, 5:00 a.m. THE DAY AFTER CHRISTMAS!

I shouldn’t be surprised. It’s tradition. My mom and Grandma always sneak off for the day and hit the stores for Boxing Day deals. I guess it’s smart, because, we all got a few gift certificates in our stockings this year (Chapters for me!) and I know there are some MAJOR sales going on.


You will NOT catch me at the mall today. I don’t mind shopping, especially at the bookstore, and crowds don’t really bother me. It’s the line ups. One Boxing Day, I stood in line at a bookstore so long, I almost finished the book I was buying.

I don’t know much about Boxing Day, but I bet if I looked up the history of it, there’d be little or no mention of SHOPPING. Which is why this year, I’m sticking around the house with my little sister. Maybe we’ll read. Or sleep. Or, maybe we’ll do some crafts…

Huh. What if we made some things out of BOXES?! Like shadow puppet stages, keepsake or idea files, a playhouse (for Amelia, of course), or even art canvasses. If we get REALLY ambitious, maybe we’ll try one of the ideas from this website:

Cool, right?!

Okay, I gotta jet! If you ARE out there braving those line-ups, stay safe!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 19 December 2014

Dealing with change — the Christmas edition

I know change is vital — it’s impossible to GROW without change. And I know that sometimes, people don’t always deal with change very well.

I’ve always considered myself pretty good at coping with change, but this holiday season, I admit, I may feel some sadness over the loss of a Duffy Family Tradition. To my shock, this year, my parents have decided to buy a — gasp! — fake tree.

Ever since I was a baby, we’ve had REAL trees for Christmas. Sometimes we go out into the woods and chop them down, other times we visit a tree farm, and more and more, we buy from the local Boy Scouts tree lot. We’ve had all kinds, but the Douglas Fir is our favourite.

But Mom has decided she doesn’t want the hassle of a real tree anymore. The hassle?

At first, I was devastated. I mean, the annual Tree Picking Ceremony is as old as me! But then I started thinking about it. Real trees are messy — I find needles in my socks for MONTHS after the holidays. And, every year, so many pre-cut trees are never bought. What happens to them? That CAN’T be good for the environment, right?

Our fake tree is beautiful. And after we filled it with lights and decorations, you can hardly tell it isn’t real. Except, the living room is missing that fresh pine scent. Sigh. I wonder if Santa will notice. <wink wink>

Speaking of Santa, I won’t be blogging again until December 26, so, I wish you and your family a VERY MERRY CHRISTMAS—and all the best for the New Year.

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 12 December 2014

Travel to the North Pole, anyone?

Did you know that the South Pole was discovered on December 11, more than 100 years ago?

Fascinating, I know, but of course, with Christmas right around the corner, it’s the NORTH pole on most people’s minds—especially if you’re a kid.

I was looking up Santa’s address for my sister the other day ( and stumbled on some fun North Pole facts. Like, did you know that the North Pole is actually WARMER than the South Pole?

That doesn’t mean you should pack your bathing suit and book a holiday. The average winter temperature is still -34°C, but can get down to -43°C, without the wind chill. B-R-R-R-R.

In fact, the air is so cold, you can hear someone talking up to almost 5 km away.

Not that you’d have many people to eavesdrop on. Aside from Mr. and Mrs. Claus and their army of elves, only a few animals can survive the North Pole elements—orca and Humpback whales, artic fox, and the occasional polar bear.

Oh, and the narwhale—a small whale with a six to 10 foot tusk, giving it the nickname: Unicorn of the Sea.

I guess if I’m looking for cool (ha ha) story ideas, I’ll find them in the North Pole. Um…anyone want to come with me?

Gotta Jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 5 December 2014

The Top 5 Books I Want to Read in 2015

I admit, I haven’t been the best reader in 2014. I started out with good intentions—but maybe my goal was a bit high. I actually only finished a handful of novels, which isn’t great. If I want to be a writer, I NEED to be a better reader.

I’ve been seeing all kinds of “most anticipated book” lists all over the Internet these days, so I thought to kick off the holiday season, I’d share with you the top five books I am excited to read in the New Year—even if most of the came out in 2014.

In no particular order:

1. The Darkest Part of the Forest – Holly Black
I’ve read a couple of Holly’s books and they really cater to the part of me that loves a creepy tale. After reading R.L. Stine’s Party Games (the new FEAR STREET book) last October, I’m even MORE excited about spooky stories.

2. The Night Gardner — Jonathan Auxier
I loved this author's first book, Peter Nimble and his Fantastic Eyes. I have a feeling this one is going to be just as awesome.

3. The Crossover — Kwame Alexander
If you look up this book on Goodreads, you can read the first page—and it is AMAZING. It’s about a kid who plays basketball. Even though I’m a track athlete, I can still appreciate a great sports story.

4. The Boundless — Kenneth Oppel
I love everything Kenneth Oppel writes. He’s Canadian, and this book is about TRAINS. I love trains. Everything about this sounds right up my alley.

5. Absolutely Almost – Lisa Graff
Lots of buzz about this book—and it looks fun!

Speaking of new books (cough, cough), the new Superman Duffy comic is AT THE PRESS RIGHT NOW. Check out the amazing cover for TRANSPIRATION. You’re going to want to add this book to your collection!

What books are on your wish list this Christmas?

Okay, Gotta Jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 28 November 2014

Tis the season for...CRAFTING!

Yup, my sister, Amelia, and I are at it again. We’ve started collecting odds and ends of supplies to start our Christmas crafting marathon!

Sure, mom’s been busy hand-making cards again this year (my signing hand is ready!), but Amelia and I have a few fun projects in mind to help out with the holiday décor.

We’re counting down the days until Santa arrives with this fun calendar.

A little paint, creativity, and a thumbprint and we’ve got the perfect tree decorations.

Grandma’s old flower pots are perfect for these treat containers.

And check out the cool stuff you can make with paper toilet rolls!

Of course, you’ll find hundreds of craft ideas by scrolling through the Internet. Do you have any cool Christmas craft ideas? Send them along!

Gotta jet! It's time to get crafting.

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 21 November 2014


Did you know that TODAY is World Hello Day?!

It’s an official holiday meant to open the lines of communication and demonstrate the important of personal interaction. Not Facebook posts or text messages, but actual face-to-face conversations.

Your challenge, should you choose to accept it, is to say HELLO! to at least 10 people. In person. 

It may seem silly, but today, World Hello Day is observed by 180 countries! People across the globe use the day as an opportunity to express their concerns for world peace—beginning with a simple greeting. Pretty cool, huh?

How many people will you say HELLO! to today?

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 14 November 2014

Halfway through NaNoWriMo

Fellow writers! We are half way through National Novel Writing Month—are you still on track?

This year, I pledged to write 100 words a day, and even though it’s been tough sometimes, I’ve managed to stay on track. I’m not saying they’re GREAT words. Right now, the whole story is filled with grammar and spelling errors, and I don’t even know if it makes complete sense.

But you know what?

It doesn’t matter! Because first drafts are meant to be rough. You can—and will—go back and edit, after you’ve spilled those rough words onto the page.

Having trouble keeping up? Here are some tips for writing FAST:

1. Remember, it doesn’t have to be perfect.
2. Give yourself permission to write a horrible first draft.
3. Don’t think—just write.

Gotta jet! Happy writing!

Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 7 November 2014

A time to remember

The eleventh hour, of the eleventh day, of the eleventh month.

That’s when Canadians observe Remembrance Day — the official date when World War I ended way back in 1918.

I don’t understand a lot about war, I mean, besides what we learn in school, but I do understand the importance of freedom. It’s because of these soldiers who fought in the war that Canada is a free country.

We’re having a school assembly in honour of Remembrance Day, and I’m one of the kids who will read In Flanders Fields out loud. Even if you don’t like poems (which I do, especially haikus), this is a great one, and helps explain why we wear poppies every year.

In case you don’t know…red poppies bloomed across some of the worst battlefields of Flanders in World War I - their bright colour a fitting symbol for the blood spilled in the war.

I’ll be wearing my poppy with pride next Tuesday. How will YOU remember this year?

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 31 October 2014


Ta da!

Bet you didn’t see THIS costume coming! Instead of my typical (and predictable) costumes this year, I chose to go with a “character” from one the Superman Duffy comics, Amelia Xerces Duffy. (I wanted to be a Beetle Mite from the new book, Beneath the SOIL, but I couldn't find anything close.)

Kinda creepy, right? The truth is, most spiders in Alberta—even Wolf Spiders— are pretty harmless to humans. You’ll find out more about them in the book…but trust me on this. The author took some creative liberties to make the fictional ones more scary.

Speaking of authors, I’m going to do NaNoWriMo this year. You know, take part in National Novel Writing Month. You’re supposed to write 50,000 words in November, but that’s a bit ambitious for me since I’m only in elementary school. So, I’ve set my personal goal at 100 words a day. Multiply by the number of days in November and it’s definitely a short story! (Besides, the object is to just get people writing…)

NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow (Nov. 1)—so tonight I’m going to show off my new costume, eat some candy, and then get a GREAT night’s sleep…because I’m going to need a rested brain to start  this new writing project. I can’t wait!

Are you doing NaNo?

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 24 October 2014

Haunted houses, mazes, ghosts & more!

Halloween falls on a Friday this year, which means, there’s only THIS weekend to cram in some of those creeptastic events going on around the province.

I don’t know about you, but I love a good scare—which is why I’ll be heading to Fort Edmonton Park this weekend for Spooktacular, where the place is turned into a Halloween land of ghosts and goblins. Sounds spooky, right?

Of course, this is just one of MANY events across the province. Here are a few listings I’ve scared up—but I’m sure with a little research you’ll find some things going on in your hometown as well. Feel free to add to this list in the comments if you know of something I missed!
  • Haunted Pumpkin Festival — Prairie Gardens & Adventure Farm (Oct. 25 & 26)
  • Halloween Trick or Treat Festival — Galaxyland, West Edmonton Mall (Oct. 25 & 26)
  • A Ghostly Walk Through Old Strathcona — Mon-Thurs, 7 p.m. (Meet at Walterdale Playhouse)
  • Nosferatu: A symphony of horror —Winspear (Oct. 31)
  • Spooky Science — Telus World of Science (Oct. 26 & 27)
  • Edmonton Corn Maze & Farm of Fear — Spruce Grove (nightly)
  • Boo at the Zoo (Oct. 27)
  • Harvest Pumpkin Hunts — Butterfield Acres Farm (Oct. 25 & 26)
  • Flashlight Nights at Cobb’s Corn Maze — Calgary (nightly)
  • Screamfest Haunted House & Freak Show — Canada Olympic Park (Oct. 25 & 26)
  • Ghouls Night Out — Heritage Park (Oct. 25 & 26)
  • Thrill Calgary 2014 — Southcentre Mall (Oct. 25)
  • Boo at the Zoo Sleepover — Calgary Zoo (Oct. 29) 

PLUS, we’re doing some great Halloween activities in class, like carving potatoes instead of pumpkins, using construction paper to make Jack-O-Lantern faces, and even writing “real estate” ads for Haunted Houses for sale.

What are YOU doing to celebrate Halloween this year?

— Chase Superman Duffy

P.S. — Next week, check out my blog for my COSTUME reveal. I can hardly wait to show you what I decided on.

Friday, 17 October 2014

Halloween costume planning just got serious

Where has the month gone?

We just had Thanksgiving and suddenly, HALLOWEEN IS RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER! Not that I’m complaining or anything—Halloween is the most spook-tacular time of the year! It’s just that, with less than two weeks before the BIG EVENT, I’m still pondering my costume.

And THAT is scary!

A few years ago, I went as Superman. Not the most original costume, I guess, and pretty predictable. The year after that, I dressed up as an astronaut. That costume was inspired after my class met Mr. Robert Thirsk, the Canadian astronaut who took 250,000 canola seeds into outer space. You can learn more about him in It’s a Blast! the third book in the Chase “Superman” Duffy adventure comics series.

Last year, I spooked things up a little with my Frankenstein costume. Actually, my friends and I all went as classic “monsters”—trick-or-treating was super fun!

But I’m stuck this year. I thought about being the tortoise from Aesop’s famous fable, The Tortoise and the Hare (for a modern twist on this story, check out Cut! To the Chase…), but I’m not sure it’s the right costume for me. What do you think?

This weekend, I’m hitting the Halloween stores and thrift shops for some inspiration. Have you thought about your costume yet? If you have any extra ideas, send them my way!

Gotta jet!

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 10 October 2014

Turkeys, family, and crafts — giving thanks this weekend!

It’s Thanksgiving weekend, which means these five things are DEFINITELY happening:

1. I will visit with a LOT of family.
2. I will eat a LOT of turkey. Mmmmm…turkey.
3. My Mom will make her famous pumpkin pie.
4. We will say LOTS of thanks. (There’s so much to be thankful for…)
5. And, I will be roped into crafting with my little sister, Amelia.

I know, number five sounds boring, right? Actually, it’s not so bad. Last year, Amelia and I made “Trees of Thanks” — we painted a tree trunk and empty branches onto a piece of paper. Then we cut out construction paper leaves and wrote something we’re thankful for on them. We glued the leaves onto the tree. It looks pretty neat. My Mom actually framed it, and it hangs in our dining room all year…which is great, since Thanksgiving isn’t the ONLY time you should count your blessings, right?

THIS YEAR, Amelia and I are making pinecone turkeys for each place setting. We gathered up the biggest and nicest pinecones from the yard, and Mom is stopping at the craft store to pick up the rest of our supplies — pipe cleaners, construction paper, googly eyes, and whatever else she finds. Then it’s time to pull out the hot glue gun and get constructing!

Amelia and I have a lot of work ahead of us, though, since we’re having TWO family Thanksgiving dinners this year. That’s okay — family is one thing I am DEFINITELY thankful for.

Gotta jet! Happy Thanksgiving to you and your family.

— Chase Superman Duffy

Friday, 3 October 2014

The most SPOOKTACULAR month!

It’s FINALLY October — the most SPOOKTACULAR month of the year. Pumpkins and costumes and candy and…

…A new FEAR STREET book! Yes, it’s true — the creeptastic R.L. Stine has a new FEAR STREET coming out this month, just in time for Halloween. It’s his first one in almost 20 years!

I also love his GOOSEBUMPS series (I’ll read anything scary), but his FEAR STREET novels are the best. (I have a GIANT collection of them…) And guess what? You can read the first chapter of PARTY GAMES here: — it’s FREE!

Speaking of NEW books…I’m also excited about the “Superman Duffy” comic that will be published at the end of the month. It’s called, BENEATH THE SOIL, and if you like thrilling reads as much as I do, you’re going to want to get your hands on this book. It’s guaranteed to give you goosebumps!

Until then…don’t forget to read the first chapter of R.L. Stine’s new FEAR STREET book. I have and it's AWESOME!

Gotta jet — it’s time for ME to start thinking about what I’m going to be for Halloween this year! I can hardly wait to go costume shopping.

— Chase Superman Duffy