“Bucky & Daisy’s Moody Adventures” is a new book series by author Donna Fatigato who was inspired to write this collection to help combat rising obesity rates in the United States, especially since so many schools are cutting physical gym classes. These books to teach young children about the importance of wellness and nutrition to encourage them to be more mindful of their health, have a positive mental mindset, and more confidence to succeed. “Bucky & Daisy’s Moody Adventures” is a series of four books and each story focused on a “new discovery” of why Bucky and Daisy’s moods have changed and finishes with a “Parents Corner” offering activities, recipes, etc. to engage with kids.
Donna has been an expert on holistic nutrition, cooking, and ACE-certified personal training for over forty years. She is a proud Ambassador for Phit America and part of the national movement to greatly improve the physical and mental health of kids across the country. Donna is an ardent children’s health advocate and she was instrumental in creating Young Lungs Fitness Program and teaching healthy and colorful cooking classes. She also volunteered as a Cooking Mentor for high-school aged students at the Fox Valley Food for Health – an organization that serves healthy meals to families battling cancer. Donna is also the author of best-selling cookbook titled “Q2 ~ A Healthy Recipe for a Balanced Life.”
Donna recently discussed her books and career via an exclusive interview.
Meagan Meehan (MM): How did you discover your passion for the wellness industry and how did you break into it?
Donna Fatigato (DF): I discovered my passion the first time I put on leg warmers and taught my first fitness class – over 40 years ago. The smiles, the energy, and the awesome feeling of making a positive impact on other people’s lives was infectious. I knew that this was my calling, so I built from there with certifications, continuing education and pursuing health & wellness opportunities.
MM: What is it about preventing weight gain that so compels you?
DF: No doubt, the combination of how I feel and the quality of life that I want to live. Weight gain is not only measured by the scale as this will fluctuate throughout the chronological years. I like to look at this question as preventing illness, bloating and fatigue and creating energy, a positive body image and wellness with an overall healthy lifestyle and weight management.
MM: How did you come up with the characters and the storylines?
DF: I created and drew the characters on my folders when I was in junior high school. I named them Bucky & Daisy and they remained dormant until I brought them to life in my children’s book series. Later, in my health and wellness career, I was teaching healthy cooking classes and educating others about physical and mental health and how the serotonin levels in your body can affect both the body and mind. The storyline and idea of the book ran fluently onto paper with Bucky & Daisy being introduced to a friend (Sara Tonin) after their moods changed suddenly one day. The first book ‘Bucky & Daisy’s Moody Adventures – Discover: Eating Healthy’ was complete! Uh-huh! I felt like I was onto something, so I decided to write three other books that are crucial to overall wellness, self-love and self-care; Bucky & Daisy Discover, Relaxation, Exercise and Health & Wellness.
MM: How did you decide to make these books a series and how did you find a publisher?
DF: I initially self-published ‘Eating Healthy’ solo in April 2019 after I researched various self-publishing platforms. It was great with a lot of work, so I decided to seek other publishing opportunities and to recreate the first book along with the other three stories as a series. My mission from April 2019 to April 2021 was to find a publisher. Since I was not successful, I sought out guidance from a celebrity author friend who also self-published with Lulu Press. My objective was to release the books as a series since the marketing is so crucial to get your work and message out to the world.
MM: How did you handle the illustrations?
DF: I envisioned how each page would look and reiterated my vision to the illustrator as to what to draw as each story unfolded.
MM: Of all the stories, do any standout to you in particular?
DF: That is a hard question to answer, because all four stories have many things in common. First, Bucky & Daisy’s moods change suddenly one day and why is that? In each story (adventure), you continue to find out. Secondly, each book addresses an important area in child development and healthy life skills. Lastly, the final message of each book – positive reinforcement – on how you can change your mood, health and overall well-being with self-love and self-care.
MM: How did you decide on recipes or activities to include at the end of each story?
DF: This was easy as I already created and shared these recipes and activities with the younger generation during my health and wellness career. I was mindful to keep them simple and I chose the one’s that made a huge impact on both the children and the parents.
MM: How do you think strides can be made to combat obesity?
DF: Make mindful healthy eating and regular physical activity part of your daily lifestyle. Choose nutritious and colorful food with the proper portion size. Move your body for your body, mind, health, and weight management. Be aware of your BMI and waist circumference as they both estimate weight status and potential disease risk. Teach our children to establish healthy behaviors early in life.
MM: What is the best feedback you’ve gotten about your books so far?
DF: The collection of books is a great way to instill good eating habits, exercise, mind-body relaxation techniques and overall self-care practices for all ages. With the fun and delightful characters, Bucky and Daisy, youngsters, and adults as well, will fall in love with their adventures into what it takes to keep their bodies, moods and mind running well while keeping it healthy in a delightful way.
MM: Might you expand this series or write other books in the future?
DF: Yes, there are many more moods and adventures to explore with Bucky & Daisy. I have written two other books to join the series and will begin production in the later part of 2022. I also have a few other ideas for books. Also, since I self-published my first book ‘Q2 ~ A Healthy Recipe for a Balanced Life’ in April 2018, I would like to republish it as it is a message of creating balance in your life, hope, healing, transformation plus 120 healthy recipes.
MM: What projects are coming up for you soon and is there anything else that you would like to mention?
DF: I would like to expand on the younger generation wellness spectrum and a healthy family lifestyle. I am offering online monthly family cooking classes to engage families to prepare, cook and eat together. Also, short videos available on YouTube @DonnaFatigato for a workout on Family Wellness Wednesday and cooking on Family Foodie Friday. I have many projects in mind and will continue to pursue ways to help people of all ages to live life to the fullest with a healthy lifestyle.
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To learn more about Donna, visit her official website: