At only 51, Angela Boone already has marked two items off her bucket list.
First, Boone, an Owensboro native who lives in Green Ridge, Missouri, attended college as a 40-something and earned a master's degree in social work.
Also, the 1986 Apollo High School graduate recently wrote and published a children's book — "Darrell the Sad Little Donkey." She plans to bring copies to the Western Kentucky Botanical Garden next month for a book reading and signing.
Here's a snapshot of the book:
Darrell's back is piled so high with sticks he can't move. He trusts himself only and won't allow anyone to help.
However, people eventually come and start removing the sticks. Thanks to them, the little donkey is able to kick up his heels and play by the end of the book.
"It's a big analogy for worry sticks," Boone said. "He was broken down with worry, but he learns to trust helpers."
Boone is a licensed clinical social worker. When she worked as a therapist with special-needs children, she noticed many seemed overwhelmed with concerns.
The idea for the book's plot and main character came from a young girl who was a client. The girl told Boone she had secrets she would never tell anyone.
Boone worked with the girl a year. Eventually, she trusted Boone enough to reveal the abuse and neglect she had suffered.
Boone watched the girl transform as a result. "She's free of her burdens. It was part of a process. She had to learn who she could trust."
Although "Darrell" is a children's book, adults have told Boone it has helped them.
It took about a year to complete "Darrell," because Boone wrote the book while working full time. She has completed a workbook about worries and is in the process of writing another book to help Haitian children identify emotions.
"Children in Haiti have such limited resources for mental health," she said.
"Darrell" costs $12 on Amazon. The electronic version sells for $5.
Growing up, Boone loved Daviess County Public Library and spent a lot of time there. She would like to return to do a public reading of "Darrell."
Also, she'd be happy to donate a copy or two for the shelves. Then, she could scratch another item off that bucket list.
Renee Beasley Jones, 270-228-2835, email@example.com