Thursday, October 19, 2006

Vacation and Bath Time Books

Wow, what a season of life my wee little family has had these past months. We entered summer with a home damaged from a spring storm, the sudden passing of my wonderful father, endured countless dealings with attorneys, still dealing with roofers and insurance companies, several illness with the wee one, husband’s increased work demands, family events, wrapping up estate matters, trying to keep up with things breaking all over the house, and started the fall with the death of a dear family friend all this while trying to have a regular daily family life. Hum, I was wondering why this book blog has been looking a bit thin lately.

Well, even though we are not going anywhere next week, my wee little family is going to take some time off and just be. Maybe a trip to the park, a pumpkin patch, or maybe another zoo trip, whatever it is I plan to enjoy it. Plus, I am determined to catch up with those dust bunnies that have invaded the floors. So, it will be another week or two before I post about some really good books that I have come across recently.

But, before I leave you for the next week and half I wanted to give a big thanks to whoever was the great mind behind the concept of bath books. May their pockets reflect well. My wee one who just can’t get enough of books has found another way to get some book time. My fabulous husband discovered bath books for us and now we have splash and read time. So far, we have a few Baby Einsteins and a Dr. Seuss. The rhyming is fun and I especially like how she tries to mimic the bath sequence as we read the Mimi’s Toe Baby Einstein bath book.

Ta ta for now. Get out there and enjoy those beautiful fall colors. If you are in the sunny warm states that skip this season, I hope your flowers are still blooming and trees are full of fruit like my sister’s in California.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Picture Books - Who Wants a Dragon?

Who Wants A Dragon? by James Mayhew and illustrated by Lindsey Gardiner 2004

Need a quick and fun story to read? Then go grab Who Wants a Dragon. The book is filled with colorful artwork that amusingly expresses a little lost dragon’s journey through a simple yet charming rhythmic storyline. The little dragon is looking for some companionship and someone to love and cuddle with. He meets various characters as he enters a kingdom (many appear to resemble notables from well-known fairytale stories), but unfortunately each for some reason or another rejects the little dragon. But, just when the little dragon begins to lose hope the right companion who will love and cuddle him the most appears. I would recommend this book for toddlers on up to 2nd grade. In addition, it works well as a read aloud. As a side note Mayhew is also the author of the Katie books such as Katie Meets The Impressionists.


Tuesday, October 10, 2006

Library up in smoke

It was another sad day for libraries Monday. A recently built library in Williamsport, Indiana suffered from total destruction at the hands of an arsonist. The building was a total loss as was its collection of over 40,000 books. Although volunteers are trying to save a few items this town is rallying in a big way with many new donations that are being set up in the old library building. This small community of around 2,000 people is located near Lafayette, Indiana and famed Purdue University. When I saw the news on television it was great to see how the public is pulling together and supporting their library and its purpose and benefit to those in the community. If you are interested in more of the story additional information can be found through this newspaper report. Library materials are not a good “match” for fire.


Friday, October 06, 2006

Non Fiction Books - Taxes, Taxes!

Taxes, Taxes!: Where the Money Goes by Nancy Loewen and illustrated by Brad Fitzpatrick 2005

Let’s face it taxes alone is not a great subject to read about especially when you’re young or old. When I stumbled across this book at the library it peeked my interest. I was curious to see if anyone could actually make the subject of taxes interesting and comprehendible. Well, let’s just say they gave it a good try. It was illustrated well in that it kept some of my attention. The subject matter was broken down into a very simplified tone and I could somewhat follow the intellectual part. However, I do think they muddled some points and added a layer of confusion when trying to explain how it all fits together on a national and state level. If this is the only book you can find, then give it a whirl, but try to supplement it with some additional materials or fun activity. The little “speaking” fact pig that pops up throughout the book did add a bit of pleasant distraction. There is a nice informational section in the back that could be useful to anyone looking for additional fun facts. I would suggest for grades 2 through 6, but probably fits 3rd and 4th grades the best. This is one of several books in a Money Matters series. I would rate this a Turn The Page with Caution - Not A Stellar Read, but if in a pinch...


Monday, October 02, 2006

Picture Books - My Lucky Day

My Lucky Day by Keiko Kasza 2003

If you have kids that like stories that spoof the traditional tales then they will enjoy this story that also makes for a fun read aloud. We have the traditional piglet and then there is a fox wondering what he is going to have to eat next. The piglet “mistakenly” knocks at the door of fox’s home looking for rabbit. Fox takes the opportunity to grab piglet and prepare him for dinner. However, piglet points out a few things to fox that might help him taste better. Fox gets busy by bathing, feeding, and messaging the piglet until he is exhausted. Then a well feed, clean, and relaxed piglet skips on home to plan his next “visit”. The story remained me somewhat of The Tale of the Tricky Fox in that tricking another is the main thread, but in this case the piglet is tricking the usual trickster. This is a fun book to share with preschool through 4th grade, but the younger ones would benefit from the illustrations expressiveness.


Sunday, October 01, 2006

Zoo Day!

A day at the zoo!

These three wise seals just looked too good not to post. They were having a satisfying time enjoying the fresh crisp air and absorbing the sunny rays on a beautiful fall day.

When I snapped this guy's photo this morning I just couldn't help wondering, do you think he might be asking for a good book to read? Probably not, but he sure does have that studious look about him.