Monday, June 30, 2014

Bookish Passion

“I want to see my wife and children every day, I want to see my grass and blossoms and corn ... But above all, except the wife and children, I want to see my books."
-John Adams

Swedish bookplate for Arvid and Anna Thelin, 1914

Monday, June 23, 2014

Your Local Bookstore

“What I say is, a town isn't a town without a bookstore. It may call itself a town, but unless it's got a bookstore it knows it's not fooling a soul.”
Neil Gaiman
Copyright Inna Kabeus

*From American Gods

Monday, June 16, 2014

Secret of Success

"People often ask me if I know the secret of success and if I could tell others how to make their dreams come true. My answer is, you do it by working."
-Walt Disney

Bookplate by Bruno Da Osimo

Friday, June 13, 2014

PPBF: The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything

For Taylor
Move forward without fear. Turn obstacles into opportunities.

Today's Perfect Picture Book Friday pick in honor of my graduate.

the Linda Williams and Megan Lloyd classic
The Little Old Lady Who Was Not Afraid of Anything
Written by, Linda Williams
Illustrated by Megan Lloyd
  • T. Y. Crowell, 1986
  • Grades K-2
  • level 3.4, Lexile 710L

Fall, Spooky

"Once upon a time there was a little old lady who was not afraid of anything."

A little old lady who lives in the woods gathers nuts in the forest. She is followed home by a series of spooky articles of clothing: clomping shoes, shaking shirt, wiggling pants, etc. The clothes are determined to scare the little old lady, and the little old lady is determined to put their frightening talents to good use. A cumulative tale with rhythmic prose that will have young readers memorizing the refrain and acting out the adventure from the classic beginning to the clever twist ending.

What I Love:
I offer this review in honor of my son who graduates high school this evening. He and I shared this story hundreds of times, and acted it out in doctor's offices, grocery lines, and car rides. The ability of story to stick with us and delight through multiple readings makes The Little Old Lady Who Wasn't Afraid of Anything a Perfect Picture Book worth sharing.

My favorite part of reading this story aloud was the cumulative, catchy refrain:

But behind her she could hear
Two shoes go CLOMP, CLOMP,
One pair of pants go WIGGLE, WIGGLE,
One shirt go SHAKE, SHAKE,
Two gloves go CLAP, CLAP,
One hat go NOD, NOD
and one scary pumpkin head go BOO, BOO!

1. Build your own scarecrow ideas from Hen & Hammock.
Luau scarecrow kit
2. Kristina made a pattern available for a nearly-life-size scarecrow on her blog, Toddler Approved!
3. Sharon Lay-Jones has a Pinterest board full of  classroom ideas for this and dozens of other picture books!
4. Here's a sweet flannelgraph pattern from Little Stars Learning.
5. Plan It Healthier has the perfect recipe for apple muffins featuring berries, nuts, and seeds, just like the little old lady gathers.
6. Kids can learn to plant their own garden with these step-by-step directions from the University of Illinois.
7. Enjoy this selection of my grad's other childhood favorites.

Guess How Much I Love You
Sheep in a Jeep

Goodnight Moon

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday
for June 13, 2014, available on Susanna Leonard Hill's excellent blog.

Monday, June 9, 2014

Friday, June 6, 2014

PPBF: Beach Feet

Today's Perfect Picture Book Friday pick

Beach Feet
Written by Masamitsu Saito
Illustrated by Kiyomi Konagay
Translated by Yuki Kaneko
Enchanted Lion, 2006, American edition 2012
ages 4-7

Seasonal, Playtime, Beach

" I'm at the beach. Yippee! The warm salty breeze tickles my nose. My shirt is off and I'm ready for the waves.

The energetic child in this story bounds from hot sand to salty waves, exploring the many sensory details of a day at the beach. Told in spare text, this colorful picture book will delight wee ones and get them in a summer frame-of-mind.

What I Love:
I love the way this book doesn't need to reveal the main character. We experience all the action by watching the child's feet, or sometimes his / her back. The illustrations are vibrant. The text is kinetic. The story is full of the sights, sounds, tastes of the beach, making this book so much fun to share. It's not a deep or educational story, but it is one I plan to purchase and to share often.

Pastel illustrations by Kiyomi Konagay

Thanks to Living Well Spending Less
1. You can get a preview of more inside spreads on Seven Impossible Things. Thanks, Jules.
2. Read the first in the Being in the World series, In the Meadow.
3. It's not too early to visit the beach. Have you been to the "top ten"?
4. Bake a sand castle cake.
5. Give your flip-flops a makeover from crafty Mother Huddle.
6. Look for these other related Perfect Picture Books at your local library.

A David Wiesner classic
A sandy fantasy
A Beach Alphabet

Reviewed by Patient Dreamer
I know there have been more perfectly beachy picture books reviewed by the community on Fridays, but I had trouble finding them. Please include a link to your past reviews of related books in the comments. Thanks.

Check out all the recommended titles for Perfect Picture Book Friday
for June 6, 2014, available on Susanna Leonard Hill's excellent blog.

Next week will be the last PPBF of the summer, but please check back each week or become a follower, because Fridays will still be reserved for a sizzling summer book club. See you then!

Thursday, June 5, 2014

Monday, June 2, 2014

Does Your Picture Book Stand Up?

"Remember one thing. Good children's literature has to be written to stand up to 500 readings aloud. It has to be short and sweet, good and to the point and about kids. Not some sweet idea about kids." 
- Rosemary Wells

Blank bookplate by Rosemary Wells