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5++ stars for Sunshine Laughing – The Poetry of Anna-Marie Fuller #poetry #poems #bookreview #booksworthreading

Title: Sunshine Laughing – The Poetry of Anna-Marie Fuller

Author: Anna-Marie Fuller

Genre: Poetry, Poems


Book Blurb:


I met Anna-Marie in December of 1980. Our initial conversations revealed her to be a deep thinker. For her degrees in education (she graduated with two), Anna-Marie took numerous philosophy courses, at which she excelled. Her skill at poetry reflected her superior intelligence and depth of understanding of many difficult subjects which she chose to embrace.


Anna-Marie was multi-talented, and that’s an understatement. Her poetry reflects this. However, she was not arrogant or high-minded–quite the opposite. Anna-Marie had a passion for people and especially as a teacher, for her students. Indeed, at the age of 12 years, she chose to pursue the profession because of a bad teacher she had that year, and she didn’t want other students to suffer the same experience. If you were fortunate enough to be in Mrs. Fuller’s elementary school class, it would be a seminal event that would change your life. I know because I lost count of the students and their parents who confessed as much. I can also add my voice to theirs because I had the distinct privilege of being married to Anna-Marie for 39 years, and she changed me in ways I can’t even begin to describe. Without her influence in my life, I would be a much different person today. A much lesser person.


Anna-Marie’s poetry reflects her compassion and understanding of the human condition. And nestled in among all the deep thinking, there are some fun little gems that show Anna-Marie had a lighter side–a playful side that rounded her out and made her all too human.


My Review:


A poetry collection worth savoring, Sunshine, Laughing will resonate with any reader. The topics are varied yet the impact is clear. Each poem deals with an emotion or experience common to all. Anna-Marie Fuller is a poet of the highest order, and this book is her legacy.


Poetry is very personal, to the writer as well as to the reader. Each poem offers insight to what the writer is feeling but it can mean something entirely different to the reader. As I read each poem, what impressed me the most is Anna-Marie Fuller’s gift for visualization. Her words paint a picture for the reader and evoke emotion.


There are illustrations in this poetry collection that compliment the poems. Some are created by Anna-Marie Fuller while others are from her husband, Peter. I enjoyed these illustrations quite a bit.


I never knew Anna-Marie Fuller personally but through her poems I’ve gotten to know her. She’s a loving, generous, kind-hearted woman who was taken too soon by cancer. The life and love she shared with her husband will shine like a beacon.


A beautiful collection of poems. Highly recommend.


My Rating: 5+ stars


Information on the Brock University scholarship established in Anna-Marie’s name –




Anna-Maire Fuller (nee Doede) was a native of St. Catharines, Ontario. As she grew up in the community, Anna-Marie was active in numerous sports, especially during her years at school. While she was involved in many sports, Anna-Marie excelled at cross country running. She received many accolades, including in 1969, a recognition award as provincial champion in track and field.


At an early age, Anna-Marie decided to make education her career. She chose to attend Brock University, where she pursued a Bachelor of Education degree as well as a Bachelor of Physical Education degree. Anna-Marie spoke fondly of her days attending Brock University, and upon graduation she continued to support the university by being active with the alumni association.


In 1980, Anna-Marie moved to Alberta to become an elementary school Phys-ed teacher. She had already been teaching in Ontario, but opportunities were scarce, so she headed west. Anna-Marie taught for almost 50 years, during which time she influenced countless student’s lives. Many would write and visit her years after they had attended her class, informing her how she had changed their lives in so many positive ways.


On January 19th of 2023, Anna-Marie lost a three-year battle with cancer. Because of her tremendous influence on so many students’ lives while she was alive, her husband Peter thought of this scholarship as a way for Anna-Marie to continue having a positive influence on students even though she’s gone. He requested it be named in Anna-Marie’s maiden name, since they were not yet married while she attended Brock University. This scholarship will be awarded to students who are enrolled in the same Physical education course that Anna-Marie graduated from, who are struggling to pay their tuition. The funds disbursed will be applied directly to the student’s tuition.


This scholarship is permanent. However, Brock University requires that $25,000 be raised over a five-year period. Even though his only income right now is pension, Anna-Marie’s husband Peter has committed to providing at least $6,000 to this scholarship within that timeframe. He’s counting on Anna-Marie’s friends, family and colleagues to help him raise the remaining amount.


If you would like to contribute to Anna-Marie’s scholarship fund, you can donate online by following this link –


-          Complete the form with your information.

-          When asked, “Please select the designation of your gift,” select, “Other.”

-          Write in “Anna-Marie Doede Bursary,” to ensure funds go directly to the bursary in memory of Anna-Marie.


Once you’ve completed the form, a charitable tax receipt will be sent to you via your email.


For further assistance, please contact Amelia Canto, Major Gift Officer, Development and Alumni Relations.


You can email her at: or call her (905) 688-5550 ext.4614.


Buy Links (including Goodreads and BookBub)


All book sales will go to the Anna-Marie’s scholarship fund.


Bookbaby –




Barnes and Noble –


Goodreads –


Author Biography:


Anna-Marie Doede was born in St. Catharines, Ontario on November 23, 1955. At the age of 12, she decided she wanted to become a teacher. She attended Sir Winston Churchill Secondary School and then graduated from Brock University in 1978 with two degrees–one in education and another in education with a Phys-ed specialty. The latter she graduated with distinction–the same as high honors. Growing up, Anna-Marie was very active in sports. She received many accolades, including in 1969, a recognition award as provincial champion in track and field.


In 1980, Anna-Marie decided to move to Calgary, Alberta. The economy in Ontario was suffering from a recession and jobs, including teaching positions, were almost nonexistent. The General Motors plant in St. Catharines was laying off most of their workers and many people were unemployed. According to Anna-Marie, the downtown district of the city was dying. She was fortunate enough to get a job with the local school board, but it meant she would be forced to teach in three separate schools each week. Such a scenario was very difficult for her.


Anna-Marie heard that the economy in Alberta was booming, and that the Calgary Board of Education was hiring, so she decided to come to Calgary and apply to work in her desired profession. Such a radical move was challenging for her since, as she put it, she was a homebody–she was very close to her family. Moving to Calgary meant she would be over 2,000 miles away from her loved ones.


Anna-Marie was hired immediately as an elementary school Phys-ed teacher and moved to Calgary at the end of August 1980. The next four months were especially difficult for her, as she missed her family terribly. She had planned to return to Ontario to spend the Christmas holidays with them, but she was so homesick she considered quitting her job in Calgary and returning to Ontario for good. Two weeks before she left for Ontario, she met me …


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Reviewed by: Nancy


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