Tuesday, April 1, 2014

Staying Busy and an over-due Library book list

We have been busy boys! You no longer want to be called Peter and Edmund, but Spider-Man and Spider-Man! High King Peter, you lost a tooth a while ago,

and it is growing in fast. 
 We have dress-up time, and I wear my "queen" tiara.

 Just about every night we dance together to a Frank Sinatra Song. At bedtime, we have the same routine every night. We get into our jammies,   brush our teeth, read at least three books, turn out the lights, pray, blow hugs, kisses, and a star to Daddy, tell him to be safe, and then blow hugs and kisses to the babies in heaven and ask them to pray for us.  
You boys are so talented with your paintings! 

You also got your very own library card! We have been staying busy with swimming lessons and tumbling class. We also just started hosting music classes again - using the Making Music Praying Twice Curriculum. You also started writing me the letters of the alphabet on sticky notes. I started taping them in your composition book for your 4th year that I started last year. I can't believe at the end of this month you turn FIVE!!!! Today we started a reading program. You have progressed so much, with just the help of Leap Frog's Letter Factory in your learning of your letters and the most common sounds they make. I can't wait to see you soar through this program. 

King Edmund, you are so creative, and always telling me stories, just like your big brother does. You are so adventurous and my little monkey. You have always had an awesome grip, dude, and you are starting to climb trees today by climbing up so you can reach a branch and swinging like a monkey, then jumping down! 

This weekend was full of adventure. We played with some older boys after eating sushi, you both learned a bad word that was taught to you as a funny joke, but with a strange understanding, you both were able to comprehend that it wasn't really a funny joke, and that we don't repeat that word. 

We also went to the International Festival which was a BLAST! You got so many flag stickers on your passport that we had to go onto the back cover! And you made some great crafts and had fun with a pretend tea party! 

Today we had a lovely picnic outside on our blue blanket. I put out the bubble machine and cranked up some international picnic themed music. Then you boys played and helped me in the garden. Peter, you decided to dig an ant trap! 

Library Book List:

Owly & Womry: Bright Lights and Starry Nights!
By Andy Runton
ISBN: 978-1-4169-5775-1

Owly & Wormy have stars in their eyes! Or at least they would like to… They want to see the stars more than anything. But from trees to misplaced telescopes to scary skreeee noises, so much stands in their way.
But if Owly and Wormy can just find their courage, they will discover that there are nearly as many new friends on the horizon as there are stars in the sky!
{This is a comic book with very little words - perfect for the pre-reader to tell you -- or his little brother the story}

By Kathryn Otoshi
ISBN: 978-09723946-4-2

Blue is a quiet color. Red is a hot head. Red likes to pick on Blue.
Yellow, Green, Purple, and Orange don't like what they see, but what can they do?
When no one takes a stand, things get out of hand. Until One comes along and shows all the colors how to stand up and count!
{A wonderful lesson in anti-bullying without putting faces or names to the issues, my 4 year old was able to tell me that he didn't want to be Red at our play date, he wanted to be Blue, which made me happy because at the last play date, he discovered after reading this book, that he was acting like Red...}

Spider-Sense Spider-Man: Spider-Man's Big City Showdown
By Joe F. Merkel & John Sazaklis
Illustrated by Andie Tong
Colors by Jeremy Roberts
ISBN: 978-0-06-162614-2
A rash of unspeakable crimes has befallen New York City---and Spider-Man is the lead suspect! The amazing web-slinger will have to devise some ingenious tricks to clear his name and stop his foe.

BATMAN: The Copycat Crime
By Devin Grayson
Illustrated by John Byrne
ISBN: 978-0439-470971
Mysterious notes are turning up all over Gotham City! Can Batman match wits with the clever Riddler?

Where Did Daddy's Hair Go?
By Joe O'Connor
Illustrated by Henry Payne
ISBN: 978-0375-93571-1

Jeremiah's dad doesn't have any hair on the top of his head. Jeremiah never really thought about it until…
"Hey, Baldy!" someone shouted.
Now Jeremiah is wondering about all sorts of things. Will he lose his own hair one day? Does it hurt to lose your hair? Just where did Daddy's hair go? And what's so great about having hair anyway?
Ultimately, this warm, fuzzy story is not just about hair but about whether it's okay to look different. Luckily, the answer for Jeremiah, as for many kids, is simple---everyone looks different!

Dragons Love Tacos
By Adam Rubin
Illustrated by Daniel Salmieri
ISBN: 978-0-803703680-1
Hooray, you're hosting your very first party for dragons!
Here's what you'll need:
1. Great big tacos
2. Little bitty tacos
3. Beef tacos
4. Chicken tacos
5. Various extra backup tacos
6. Secret hidden emergency tacos
7. Fruit punch
8. More tacos
After all, dragons love tacos. And if you have plenty of tacos, nothing could possibly go wrong at your party. RIGHT?

The Wizzard 
By Jack Prelutsky
Illustrated by Brandon Dorman
ISBN: 978-0-06-124077-5
The wizard, watchful, waits alone within his tower of cold gray stone and ponders in his wicked way what evil deeds he'll do this day.
What do you think the wizard is planning to do? Conjure a magic spell? Turn a frog into a flea? Fill a cauldron with bubbling brew?
You may think you know…but watch out. Because if the wizard is bored, he may come looking for you!

Tim O'Toole and the Wee Folk 
An Irish Tale Told and Illustrated by Gerald McDermott
ISBN: 0-670-80393-6
Tim O'Toole and his wife, Kathleen, are so poor they have not a penny or a potato between them. Even their mice are too skinny for the cat to chase. What Tim O'Toole needs is a job. But when he goes out to find one, he stumbles upon a troop of the little people--laughing, singing, and carrying on. And the little people provide Tim with something better than a job: a gray goose that lays golden eggs, and a linen tablecloth filled with food to last Tim and Kathleen for the rest of their lives. But when the evil McGoons trick poor, guileless Tim out of his fortune, he must team up with the little people once more to regain it. Spirited art by Caldecott winner Gerald McDermott amusingly illustrates Tim O'Toole's plight and his triumphant revenge on the McGoons.
{Don your best Irish brogue - this is one of the boys' favorite books from this past library visit!}

Your Moon, My Moon - A Grandmother's Words to a Faraway Child
By Patricia MacLachlan
Illustrated by Bryan Collier
ISBN: 978-1-4169-7950-0
Where I live is different from where you live.
Here it is cold. There it is hot. Here we skate on the pond. There you swim in your pond. There you read your books. Here I remember the books we read together.
A grandmother and grandchild cannot always be together, but the great distance is bridged by the love they share and the moon they both see.

Never Play Music Right Next to the Zoo
By John Lithgow
Illustrated by Leeza Hernandez
ISBN: 978-1-4424-6743-9
Oh, children! Remember! Whatever you may do, never play music right next to the zoo. 
They'll burst from their cages, each beast and each bird, desperate to play all the music they've heard.
While a little boy and his family listen to an outdoor concert, chaos ensues: The nearby zoo animals decide to join in on the fun! John Lithgow's lyrical text lead to harmonious hilarity in the story that introduces musical instruments in a low-key way. Lively illustrations by Leeza Hernandez showing the exuberant animals and the disgruntled conductor and musicians brighten this tale even more. A CD of John Lithgow performing "Never Play Music Right Next to the Zoo" is included.
{another one of the boys' favorites - especially listening to the CD!}

Daddy, will you miss me?
By Wendy McCormick
Illustrated by Jennifer Eachus
ISBN: 0-689-81898-X
My Daddy's going to work, far away in Africa---without me!
To a child waiting for his father to return from a trip, four weeks can seem like forever. To help ease the pain of separation, a father and son create rituals for each passing day. From blowing kisses to one another at night to marking off days on the calendar, these simple activities help them remain close in their hearts while they are far apart. Together with soft, tender illustrations, this poignant and heartwarming story shows that whether you're across the glove or just across town, the love between a father and child spans any distance.

How Droofus the Dragon Lost his Head
Written and illustrated by Bill Peet
ISBN: 0-8085-3078-7
Droofus the kindly dragon has a price on his head, but the small boy who befriends him refuses to sell him to the king.The creator of whimsical fantasies featuring a bevy of lifelike and lovable creatures, Bill Peet consistently combined excellent storytelling with enduring illustrations, becoming one of the most popular picture book creators of our time. 

The Rainbow Fish
By Marcus Pfister
ISBN: 1-55858-009-3

The Rainbow Fish is an international bestseller and a modern classic. Eey-catching foilstamping, glittering on every page, offers instant child-appeal, but it is the universal message at the heart of this simple story about a beautiful fish, who learns to make friends by sharing his most prized possessions, that gives the book its lasting value.

The Rainbow Fish Finds His Way
By Marcus Pfister
ISBN: 978-0-7358-2085-2
Marcus Pfister's award-winning Rainbow Fish is back---in a brand-new adventure!
This time, Rainbow Fish gets lost in an undersea storm and has to find his way back home. Luckily, with the help of some new friends, it isn't long before Rainbow Fish is reunited with his glittering school of fish.
{I have used this as jumping off point to learn our home address for the boys, especially the older one}

Rainbow Fish and the Sea Monsters' Cave
By Marcus Pfister
ISBN: 0-7358-1536-4
The glittering hero of the award-winning international best-sellers, The Rainbow Fish, Rainbow Fish to the Rescue!, and Rainbow Fish and the Big Blue Whale, returns. This time, in order to find healing algae for the ailing bumpy-backed fish, Rainbow Fish rashly volunteers to brave the dreaded Sea Monsters' Cave---the most dangerous place in the ocean. Warned by his friends about the dreadful denizens of the deep---the rock monsters, the five-eyed glove fish, and the horrible creature with a thousand arms---Rainbow Fish, accompanied by the little blue fish, musters all his courage and sets out on the perilous quest.

Ribbit Riddles
By Katy Hall and Lisa Eisenberg
Illustrated by Robert Bender
ISBN: 0-803702525-6
Why do frogs make such great baseball players?
They are good at catching flies!
And young readers will catch a case of the giggles when they experience the tongue -in-cheek humor leaping through Ribbit Riddles.
Katy Hall and Lisa Eisenberg have spawned this hilarious mix of puns, riddles, and jokes, while hopular illustrator Robert Bender has provided the today fabulous warts-of-art. Without a doubt, Ribbit Riddles will enchant every wise-croaking tadpole.

Turkey Riddles
By Katy Hall and Lisa Eisenberg
Illustrated by Kristin Sorra
ISBN: 0-14-240369-5

Gobble, gobble
What did the turkey say when the pilgrim passed the potatoes?
"No, thanks. I'm stuffed."
What's the difference between a turkey and an owl?
A turkey doesn't give a hoot.
Kids will gobble up these plucky turkey puns, the perfect treat for anyone with a fowl sense of humor. Fluff up your feather and get ready for laughs!

A Dignity of Dragons - Collective Nouns for Magical Beasts
By Jacqueline K. Ogburn
Illustrated by Nicoletta Ceccoli
ISBN: 978-0-618-86254-2
To catch a glimpse of one unicorn is lucky, to see a grace of unicorns is to witness a marvel. In this book, you will also find…a riddle of sphinx, a splash of mermaids, a dignity of dragons, and more. 
With inventive groupings, luminous artwork, and a fact-filled glossary, A Dignity of Dragons makes for a bestiary to treasure. For within its pages, you'll learn about all the creatures you may be lucky enough to see, if you know where to look. 
{This book is THE reason why I started this list}
Hansel and Gretel 
Retold and illustrated by James Marshall
ISBN: 978-1435-210806
{This is the little one's favorites - and he likes to say that he's so glad to have a nice Mommy - melt my heart!}

My Father Is in the Navy
By Robin McKinley
Illustrated by Martine Gourbault
ISBN: 0-688-10639-0
"He'll be so glad to see you," said my mother. "You've grown so much.It's been a long time."
My father is coming home. But I didn't remember him.
Many fathers' jobs take them away from home for long periods of time. This realistic, positive story of one little girl and one loving but absent father will enchant -- as well as reassure -- children whose parents are both near and far. 

All the Seasons of the Year
By Deborah Lee Rose
Illustrated by Kay Chorao
ISBN: 978-0-8109-8395-3
All the Seasons of the Year captures the many ways children are cherished all year round:
in autumn, when they rake the leaves into piles and jump right in;
in winter, when they race outside to sled down snowy hills;
in spring, when they send their kites higher than ever before;
in summer, when they splash together in the ocean, and lake, and pool;
and in fall again, when the seasons come full circle.
Just as seasons flow, children change and grow. Parents, grandparents, and all the special people in a child's life will love sharing this sweet celebration through all the seasons of the year, and in the years to come.

Mama, Is it Summer Yet?
By Nikki McClure
ISBN: 978-0-8109-8468-4
In the last chilly, cooped-up days of winter, a young boy longs for summer. His mother points to each small, encouraging sign of the changing seasons--tender green buds on trees, ducklings in the pond, swallows on the warm spring winds. Together, mother and son find the unique beauty and pleasure offered by each passing day until summer comes, bringing warm sun, bright flowers, and fat, juicy berries. 
A celebration of nature and change, this beautiful book encourages children to look closely at the world around them, and features Nikki McClure's extraordinary cut-paper art and lyrical text.

Fletcher and the Springtime Blossoms
By Julia Rawlinson
Illustrated by Tiphanie Beeke
ISBN: 978-0-06-168855-3
Fletcher loves everything about spring: listening to the birds sing, smelling just-opened flowers, and playing chase with butterflies. But then Fletcher sees something he never expected to see in spring: snow. 
Oh, no!
But it turns out that spring has another surprise in store for Fletcher---a warm and wondrous one.
Jump into spring with Fletcher and friends!

Gramps and the Fire Dragon
By Bethany Roberts
Illustrated by Melissa Iwai
ISBN: 0-395-69849-9
Jesse and Gramps sit by a blazing fire, looking for pictures in the flames. No sooner does Jesse spot a dragon that it roars and comes to life! Jesse and Gramps find themselves in a wondrous imaginary land, with the clumsy fire dragon close behind. Can Jesse save Gramps from the not-so-dangerous dragon and lead them safely home?
Bright, playful illustrations accompany this spirited fantasy adventure for the very young. 

Where's My Hug?
By James Mayhew
Illustrated by Sue Hellard
ISBN: 978-1-59990-225-8
Jake doesn't want to give his mother a hug when he gets to school. All the other kids will think he's a baby! After a bad day, however, Jake decides he wants his hug, only to learn that his mom has given it to his dad, who's given it to the cat, who's given it to a witch…. Eventually, Jake tracks down his hug to the most unusual of places. Will Jake ever get his hug back for good?
James Mayhew's gentle story and Sue Hellard's charming illustrations make this a perfect bedtime story for parents and children to share.

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