By Steve Sears
Wayne resident Jolie Della Valle, affectionately known as “Miss Jolie,” recently released her second children’s book, Searching for Good Luck, about a cute character named Lucky who encourages looking at the bright side in everyone and every moment.
Illustrated by Laurie Tormollan, the offering is a follow up to her first book, Georgie and the Ants in the Pants. Della Valle’s future plans include continued tour of schools, libraries, and educational centers throughout New Jersey, bringing with her a powerful message about the magic of mindfulness and positivity.
Per Della Valle, Searching for Good Luck is all about “bringing awareness to a lot of parents and people about, just as important as teaching about colors and shapes and numbers, I think talking about feelings and emotions and bringing awareness to the present moment and gratitude is so important. That’s why I wrote this book.”
Della Valle, who is supported by her husband, George, and son, Georgie, is unique. She comes from a family with a musical love and background, plays a number of musical instruments (especially her favorite, a red ukulele, which she taught herself to play and is most recognized by kids, and she is now learning to play the harmonica), and connects with her young audience via music, reading, and dancing.
It’s interactivity at its most fun and finest.
Della Valle’s path, which has taken her to where she is now, initially was – due to her hesitance to sing in public – going to feature her on instruments only while another woman would vocalize. However, the duo became a solo act as her partner’s schedule and family obligations unfortunately made it difficult to plan performances. “I said, ‘You know what, if I’m going to encourage kids to follow their dreams and believe in themselves, I have to lead by example.’ So, I kind of got over my fear of singing in public and in front of people, and one thing led to another, and I’m here now and it’s the main thing I do: entertain and sing. It’s really a huge part of my journey. You can do anything you put your mind to; just believe in yourself.”
The bubbly Della Valle is a 2009 graduate of The Fashion Institute of Technology, and afterwards she became a sales rep and marketing executive for a children’s wholesale jewelry company. She who wrote much poetry when younger then launched Ants in the Pants, LLC, a children’s clothing company where she made her own clothes, which ultimately became a book publishing company. With the publication of Georgie and the Ants in the Pants, Della Valle began writing children’s music, and recorded Ants in the Pants Jams, her first EP, to go along with her first book. Her newest album, SO LUCKY, was released on April 1.
Della Valle knew that the very talented Tormollan was the one to call for illustrations. “I knew I needed her,” she says. “I’m so honored that she worked on this with me because she is the top of the top in terms of being professional and is an incredible talent. She blew me away.”
SO LUCKY and Searching for Good Luck are now available on Della Valle’s website, www.MissJolieMusic.com.