Tag Archives: parenting

Books We Are Reading This Week – September 23, 2015

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Welcome back to another look at what we are reading this week! We were out of town the last half of last week and didn’t have a chance to get to the library so we have turned to our own books this week for story time and am looking forward to sharing some more of our favorites with you.

We really enjoy The Barefoot Book of Pirates by Richard Walker. This is a great collection of pirate stories from around the world. There are stories from Germany, Ireland and Japan just to name a few. They are full of swashbuckling adventure and my two pirate lovers loved reading these stories (I don’t think Soph has paid so much attention to a story in a long time but even with Jack jumping all over her while Dad was reading she was laser focused on the story). Kids will meet everyone from fierce characters to friendly and funny ones. These classic stories were specifically written for a younger audience and are perfect for reading aloud.

Gearing up for Halloween we pulled out Tales of Mystery and Magic. This is another collection of seven stories from around the world. There are Indian, Chilean, Inuit, Seneca, Scottish, Russian and West African stories included in this anthology of all things mysterious and spooky. I love this book because it is a safe way to introduce spooky stories to younger kids. I will say though that you need to know your kids for this one. If you have a child that is easily frightened I might hold off on this one, but it is a great way to open up a dialog about things that kids might find frightening.

The Real Princess: A Mathmagical Tale is one of my favorite books to read to the kids. It takes the classic “The Princess and the Pea” and adds a little math twist to it. The King, Queen and their three sons are in search of The “Real” Princess but there is a little secret that only the queen knows. This is another fun one we love rereading. There is also a fun little game in the back of the book that can test counting skills.

I am a big fan of the Ruby series and Ruby’s School Walk is no exception. Ruby is a young girl with quite the imagination! She imagines all sorts of trouble and scary things on her walk to school each day. Everything from a tiger ready to pounce to all sorts of creatures lurking in the shadows. It is a great way to start a conversation about being brave and overcoming your fears.

Star Seeker: A Journey to Outer Space is my favorite book that we read this week. I have always been a fan of space and this is a beautifully illustrated book that uses poetic rhyming text to give an introduction to outer space. We follow two children on a wonderful journey through the stars and planets. I especially love the end notes included in this book that have great facts about constellations, planets and many other things that can be found in space.

So those are the books we are reading this week. What are you reading this week? Let me know in the comments below or over on Twitter and Facebook.

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: I am an Independent Barefoot Books Ambassador and would make a commission on any books sold through the links in this post. 

Books We Are Reading This Week – September 16, 2015

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Welcome back to another look at some of the great books we are reading this week. Hopefully you will find a few titles here that you can share with your family!

First up is Wingsby Christopher Myers, this is a beautiful story about a boy in a new school named Ikarus who is taunted for having wings. He decides to exile himself and a young girl goes on a search to find him. This story offers a great lesson to little ones on acceptance and individualism. This is a lesson I try to share with my children as much as possible and we really enjoyed sharing this story.

Secret Pizza Partyis the cute story of a raccoon who LOVES pizza (who doesn’t!). He spends most of his time outside a local pizza place much to the pizza man’s dismay. Raccoon devises a clever plan to have his own secret pizza party. Things don’t go exactly as planned and we get to follow Raccoon along on his adventure to have some yummy pizza! My pizza loving kids really liked this book!

Where’s the Pair?is a beautifully illustrated seek-and-find book filled with all sorts of animals and encourages kids to find the matching pair on each spread. There’s a good mix of difficulty levels that made it fun for both Soph & Jack. It also has great rhyming text that flows nicely and uses great vocabulary. We really had a great time with this book.

Silly Sallyis a cute, fun, short book all about being silly! We follow along as Sally walks through town (not quite in the way you might think). I love that is shows that it’s OK to be silly sometimes! It has great watercolor illustrations that made the kids laugh! It has a great rhythm to it that makes it a great read-aloud.

Finally, Rocks! Rocks! Rocks!is a great book about Buddy who loves collecting and examining rocks. His mother suggests that they head out to their local nature center. They meet up with a Ranger who teaches Buddy all about rocks. As a mom with a three-year-old who loves to collect rocks we really enjoyed the illustrations and learning all about rocks!

That’s all I have for this week. Please comment below, on Facebook or Twitter and let me know what you are reading this week!

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

Books We Are Reading This Week – September 9, 2015

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Welcome back!! I have 5 fantastic books to share with you this week. Hopefully you will find a few that your family will really enjoy.

I Dare You Not to Yawn is a very funny book structured as an instruction manual to help kids avoid being sent to bed early by their parents. There are lots of sound effects throughout the story which make it a great read aloud bedtime story. As a mom with two kids that have become increasingly anti-beditme this really hit home!

Dinosaur Rescue! is a beautiful picture book about the Dinosaur Rescue Team coming to the aid of a pickup truck that gets stuck on some railroad tracks. We see all the dinosaurs working together to make sure everyone is safe. Once all is right in their little dino world we get to see how they rest and play. There are also a ton of fun sound effects in this story and great end notes featuring the names of the dinosaurs and vehicles in the story.

The Story about Pingis the sweet story of Ping the duck who sets out for the day with his family on a boat and ends up getting left behind. We follow Ping as he sets out to find his family. Along the way he makes quite a few friends and finds his share of trouble. This book is another beautifully illustrated book perfect for reading aloud as a family.

The Seals on the Busis a fantastic take on the classic “Wheels on the Bus”! It is a great sing-along that is perfect for little animal lovers. My kids love anything that they can sing and dance along with and this was no exception. The bus is full of all kinds of animals and we honk, roar, eerp and so much more along with them on the bus.

Greenby Anita Loughrey is a great book to help little ones learn all about the color green. Anita Loughrey was a school teacher for 17 years before becoming a full-time writer. She has taken her knowledge from her many years teaching young children and mixed it with beautiful, bright and bold illustrations to help very young children start to understand the concept of the color green.

That’s it for this week! Please let me know below what you are reading this week or find me over on Facebook or Twitter!

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links.

Apples, Apples Everywhere!!

Apple Tree

Image courtesy of Arvind Balaraman at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

I LOVE Fall! It is by far my favorite season. I love the colors, the temperature, the fashion, I love it all! In our family we signal the start of Fall with a trip to the apple orchard. So in honor of our upcoming trip to the apple orchard I thought I would share with you a few of the fun apple activities we have planned to help us get geared up for the trip!

We are huge fans of Do-a-Dot Sheets at our house. They are great for using Dot Markers (which the kids love) or using stickers which are always a big hit. I love the ones I found in the A is for Apple Preschool Worksheets over at Crystal & Co.

I love the pattern template and cards found in A Teaching Mommy’s Apple Preschool Pack.

Since we have been all about the play dough lately we will be trying this homemade apple scented play dough recipe I found when visiting The Preschool Toolbox.

I love some good messy fun so I am super excited to pull out the paints and cinnamon and do some painting. I found this idea over at From ABCs to ACTs.

I am so excited to try the Erupting Apple experiment I found over at Little Bins for Little Hands! Everything you need for this fun example of a chemical reaction can probably be found in your home. It’s super simple, fun and easy to put together!

I love these Apple Number Puzzles from Totschooling. They are a super clever and cute way to work on counting, number recognition, and one-to-one correspondence.

Apple Stamping is a super easy and fun way to really spice up painting time. I found this idea over at Teaching Mama. The kids have such a good time using unconventional tools to paint! They love to paint anyway but when we can use something unique and that we already have around the house it is even better!


Image courtesy of tuelekza at FreeDigitalPhotos.net

If you are looking for some great books that go with all things apples here are a few of our favorites:

Ten Apples Up On Top!

Apples for Everyone

Apple Farmer Annie

How Do Apples Grow?

Johnny Appleseed


I would love to know if you give any of these ideas a try! Let me know below or comment over on Facebook or Twitter!

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links.

Books We Are Reading This Week – September 2, 2015

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Happy Wednesday!! Welcome back to another look at some of the books we have enjoyed this past week.

The Moon Book is a great non-fiction book that has a ton of information written at a first to second grade level all about the moon. I love introducing higher level non-fiction books to my kids. I am sure they don’t pick up on and understand all the information but building a foundation for these concepts is really important to my family. In this book we learn all about the phases of the moon, the moon’s role in Solar and Lunar eclipses, it’s effects on the world’s oceans and so much more. It also goes into moon folk-lore from around the world. At the end of the book there is a great lesson on making your own solar eclipse viewer.

Love Monsteris the story of Monster, a monster that is different from all the other monsters found in “Cutesville”. He is lonely and doesn’t have anyone to connect with because he is different. He heads out in search of someone who will love him just the way he is and finds it in an unexpected place. It’s a great lesson for the kids and the bright, bold illustrations really helped engage the kids in the story.

Have You Seen My Duckling? is a cute seek-and-find book that the kids really enjoyed. We follow mama duck and her seven ducklings as they search for their missing sibling. They explore the pond and try to get help from several other creatures that call the pond home. The fun part for the kids was realizing that the little missing duckling is never far away and in fact the kids can find him hiding on each page. It’s a fun little game watching Soph & Jack try to find the duckling in each picture.

It’s a Firefly Nightis a great summertime book that is beautifully illustrated using deep, rich colors. We follow a young girl around her yard as she chases and catches fireflies with her dad. After counting them she very sweetly releases them. This is a great story made even better by the awesome end notes with some great facts about fireflies!

A Camping Spree With Mr. Mageeis a fun read along all about Mr. Magee and his faithful pooch enjoying a nice, peaceful camping trip when all of a sudden they find themselves flying down a mountain and on the precipice of a waterfall. Follow along to see how they get themselves out of trouble this time.

As always let me know what you are reading in the comments below or over on Facebook or Twitter! I would love to know!!

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links.

Books We Are Reading This Week – August 26, 2015

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Welcome to another Wednesday! I decided to expand on yesterday’s post about my decision to start my own business and become an Independent Barefoot Books Ambassador and share with you my family’s five favorite books in the Barefoot Books Library.

Soph’s favorite is Animal Boogie. This is one of Barefoot Books AMAZING singalongs. We boogie along with other children through an Indian jungle and learn all sorts of actions we can do along with the animals. I love when the kids act out the story. They stomp with the elephant, shake like the bear and slither like snake. I also love the creativity and imagination it brings out in Soph and Jack. Soph has come up with many of her own verses and will randomly sing them along with the chorus throughout the day. Each story comes with a CD featuring an audio track and an animated video great for impromptu dance parties!

The Gigantic Turnip is a sentimental favorite of mine. This is the first Barefoot Books book that I ever got my hands on and read. This is a fun, humorous tale of an old man, an old woman and ALL the animals on the farm working together to try to harvest a particularly big turnip! It is great to work on counting with your child and the rhyming and repetitive text really keeps the kids engaged through the whole story.

The Boy Who Grew Flowers is a great story all about accepting people for who they are. It is the story of a boy who grows flowers all over his body every time there is a full moon. He meets a young girl with her own secret and they discover ways that they can help each other. It is such a great message to teach our kids. We love this one in our house!

I Took the Moon for a Walk is a magical bedtime story about a boy who imagines taking the moon for a walk. I love the lyrical text and the illustrations are just beautiful. If you look closely you will notice the moon’s red shoes and if you watch them throughout the story you will notice a little story within a story revolving around the moon’s shoes. The end of the book features some great educational end notes about the different phases of the moon and some information on nocturnal animals. Soph and Jack both really enjoyed this story.

Lastly, Mama Panya’s Pancakes is a heartwarming story all about the importance of sharing, even when you don’t have much to give. This was a really great lesson that I was happy to share with my own children. This one takes place in Kenya and this one also includes some great end notes at the end of the story. Children can learn about the culture, people and animals of Kenya!

What are you reading this week? Let me know in the comments below or find me over on Facebook or Twitter!

Until next time!

This post contains affiliate links. As an Independent Barefoot Books Ambassador I will receive a commission from any sales made from these links.

Books We Are Reading This Week – August 19, 2015

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It’s Wednesday and you know what that means!! It’s time to take a peek at some of the great books we read this week.

I See Summer is a great bilingual book all about the fun things to see and do in summer. We had a great time looking at the illustrations and I am sure the kids loved mom trying to read in Spanish.

In, Out and All Aroundwas a book that the whole family really enjoyed. Mom and Dad even got in on the action trying to find out which snail was ready for a dance. Each page features a picture with a bunch of similar snails and it is your job to find out which one is different. It was the perfect challenge for a 3 and a 1 year old. This book was a huge win for us and we will be looking for more titles by this author.

In Where Is Bear?we follow several forest animals as they play hide-and-seek. Rabbit starts out and finds most of the other animals fairly quickly but the biggest animal of all, Bear, is nowhere to be found. We follow the animal friends on their adventure to find Bear! This was a really cute story with great rhymes that the kids really enjoyed.

Construction Kitties takes us out for a day at the construction site where we follow four kitties to work. They spend the day digging and moving dirt to help create a beautiful playground for the neighborhood. The bright illustrations in this book and the straightforward text made this book very engaging for the kids.

Lastly this week I  want to share First the EggI love this book! It starts with the classic question, which came first, the chicken or the egg? It then follows up with the life-cycle of other creatures like the frog and butterfly. This book has beautiful illustrations and uses diecuts in each page in a really clever way to help tell the story. Soph had a really great time trying to finish each sentence.

What are you reading this week? Let me know below or over on Facebook or Twitter!

Until next time!

Full Disclosure: this post contains affiliate links

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