Saturday, June 30, 2012

Chrysanthemum By: Kevin Henkes

When this little mouse was born she was named Chrysanthemum by her parents because it was absolutely perfect just like her.  As she grew she learned a lot and loved her name...until she started school that is.  All the other mice had common names and they giggled at hers.  They teased it was too long, and she was named after a flower! Chrysanthemum wilted and when she got home her parents comforted her and assured her that it was still a beautiful name and made her feel better time after time.

But it became hard for her to go to school until one day when the music teacher Mrs. Twinkle arrived. Everyone admired Mrs. Twinkle and she told the class she was named after the flower Delphinium and when she had her new baby she was considering the name Chrysanthemum. Chrysanthemum couldn't have been more happy and all of the sudden all the girls wanted flower names too.  "Chrysanthemum did not think her name was absolutely perfect. She knew it!"  The Epilogue to the book is so funny the girl that always picks on Chrysanthemum forgets her lines in the play and Chrysanthemum gets a good giggle out of it and Mrs. Twinkle has a baby that she names Chrysanthemum.

This book will give parents an opportunity to talk with your kids about the importance of knowing who you are and sticking to what you know is right in your heart.  All kids at one point will be picked on but it shows how one persons courage to stick up for someone who needs it can make a very big difference.  It doesn't have to be a teacher it can be a courageous friend who stands up for you but what is important is to teach our children the power that lies within.  It also is a great chance to talk with kids to show them that all children are different in someway but all parents think that our little ones are "absolutely perfect!"

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Growing Vegetable Soup By: Lois Ehlert

Growing Vegetable Soup is a wonderful and informative book about what it takes and looks like to grow a garden.  We like to borrow the "BIG BOOKS" version aka the super sized version of the book.  My girls like to compare what we grow to what they see in the book.  All the tools used in the garden are shown and labeled as well as the variances in shapes and sizes of the different vegetable seeds. As the book progresses the pages show you how a plant really looks like as it grows, blossoms, and produces something yummy to eat.  The simple text makes it an easy read and each page gives you plenty to talk about.  Eventually the harvest takes place and the soup is made. "At last it's time to eat it all up! It was the best soup ever...and we can grow it again next year."

What a great book!  I love how it opens up the discussion on the importance of gardening and how much work it takes to get healthy food to the table.  So if you have a garden or want the little ones to learn more about where their food comes from this is the perfect book!  We are a family who loves our veggies; Isabela's favorite vegetable is onions and Emma's favorite vegetable is cherry tomatoes!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Sleepy Little Yoga By: Rebecca Whitford By: Martina Selway

Sleepy Little Yoga is a great way to introduce your little ones to the discipline of Yoga.  My girls love to read this book before bed at night.  We get out our mats and start our poses.  The book keeps it simple for kids and has them mimic animals with their poses.  They definitely relate to it and they think it is so much fun.  This book is a perfect way to get the kiddos ready for bed and have a little fun doing it!  It is wonderful to incorporate a healthy habit for their little bodies before bed.  Don't forget grownups to get down and do it with them while you are reading them this book!
Happy bedtime Yoga reading!

Thursday, June 21, 2012

First Tomato A Voyage To The Bunny Planet By: Rosemary Wells

A little bunny name Claire is having a bad day where nothing seems to go right.  But while waiting for her bus in the snowy cold she closes her eyes and "Far beyond the moon and stars, Twenty light-years south of Mars, Spins the gently Bunny Planet And the Bunny Queen is Janet."  Janet tells Claire to go through a door for the "day that should have been."  Claire is transported to the summer and hears her mother telling her to pick her some beans, peas and a ripe tomato.  She finds a big, red, ripe tomato and "It smells of rain and steamy earth and hot June sun." She gives it to her mother and then watches her mother cook.  "I've made you First Tomato soup because I love you so." 

 As I read this book to my girls it makes me long for those tiny yellow flowers on my lush green tomato plants to produce some wonderful fruit for the taking!  I can picture Emma eating all of our grape tomatoes before anyone even gets one!

We love this book and I love asking the girls what their perfect day would be if they were transported to Bunny Planet.  Emy always says "being in the garden with my momma" (melt my heart) and last time Isy said "us getting to cook together".  My favorite illustration in this book is when Claire is looking at her mother cooking.  You can see the admiration in her eyes and the love for her mother with that one picture.

If you enjoy this tale there are two other bunny planet books from Rosemary Wells worth checking out too!

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Alice the Fairy By: David Shannon

Meet Alice, she is a temporary fairy not a permanent one because "you have to pass a lot of tests to be a permanent fairy." This is a silly book and girls will flock to it and will fall in love with this precocious character Alice. This tale of a little girl who has "wings" and can fly, has a magic wand, and blanket can do all sorts of fairy like things.  She still needs practice though for things like making her dog float on the ceiling (it seems she hasn't gotten the right magic words down.), and making her clothes float into the closet.  Alice the Fairy has to be careful too because the wicked duchess (her mom) often poisons broccoli "and should never be eaten."

This book is never short on humor and my girls love it!  David Shannon is a great
author and illustrator and seems to know exactly what the kids will love!  My daughter Isabela received this book for Christmas when she was two and memorized it almost immediately.  I remember her quoting the last page of the book "I'll probably be a temporary fairy forever."

"One time my mom made cookies for my dad. So I turned them into mine."  

Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Max & Ruby Beach Day! By: Rosemary Wells

Max & Ruby Beach Day is a fun read for anyone headed to the beach with their kiddos! My family and I just got back from our beach vacation, and as we sat in the sand we giggled at remembering this book we read months back. Ruby is always telling her little brother Max exactly what to do but Max somehow always sees the bigger picture that Ruby is missing while she is "leading" them. Pick up this great read and find out what happens as Max and Ruby build their sandcastle and find out how Max ends up saving the day for them! Did I mention that this is a great easy read for first time readers and anyone who enjoys the Max & Ruby Series?! To a simple but delightful read!