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Caldecott and Newbery 2016 Predictions

Caldecott and Newbery 2016 Predictions

This is my third year judging for the Cybils and I don’t dare compare it to the Caldecott or Newbery awards but I wonder if there is the same dynamic that we have in deciding a winner. For the Cybils, we work off of a short list that is presented to us by first round judges so there is a set number of books to consider but only one winner. A few of the books in each category, I’ve noticed, get a strong reaction that’s either love or hate. Thus a compromise situation is necessary so there’s always a book that everyone likes though it might have also made everyone’s second tier. But  this book is the book that tends to win.

I can see how picture books that win a Caldecott honor or award need to appeal to a young audience of 4 and older. Picture books that a four-year-old can not grasp might be eliminated and I can understand that but that might be why a picture book as gorgeously illustrated as Bird by Beatriz Martin Vidal might not win or even find its audience. Read more…

This Duck Wears Pink

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month #ThisDuckWearsPink

Healthy Living for Elders #AgingWellDid you know that October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month? I got the best Christmas present last year. My mother, who was then 91-years-old was diagnosed for the second time with breast cancer last fall. She went through a myriad of tests. Just when I was trying to figure out how to arrange a trip to California to help out, my mom called me. Her final tests showed that the growth was pre-cancerous and did not require surgery. Instead, they put her back on hormone treatment.

Healthy Living for Elders #AgingWell

October is a good time to learn more about breast cancer. Did you know … Read more…

Halloween window painting

Peanuts The Movie and Star Market #peanutsmovie

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Albertsons Safeway. The opinions and text are all mine.

Halloween window painting

What are the Halloween traditions where you live? We have a window painting competition where I live. Some years, we get torrential rain which erases most of the window paintings. One year, we got an early snowstorm that took out the power to our neighborhood for four days, including Halloween. This year, though, the weather looks great for window painting and, hopefully, Trick or Treating!

Halloween window painting

Do your kids like the Peanuts gang? Charlie and the gang are back in a new Peanuts movie that tells the story of Charlie and the new girl. The Albertsons Safeway family of local grocery stores, which includes my local Star Market, will be an exclusive grovery partner for the upcoming release of the Peanuts movie. Check out the trailer here. The Peanuts Movie is coming out Friday, November 6th, 2015.

The Peanuts Movie and Star Market Read more…

Best Bedtime Books GIVEAWAY

Best Bedtime Books GIVEAWAY & Kid Lit Blog Hop

Please welcome author Laura Sassi who has a new picture book out! We are giving it away (see Rafflecopter at the bottom) and she also has a list of Best Bedtime Books to share!

Laura Sassi bedtime books

Goodnight Manger by Laura Sassi, illustrated by Jane Chapman

Imagine how baby Jesus must have slept on that busy winter night with everyone visiting! Laura Sassi reimagines Christmas eve, told in rollicking rhyme accompanied by cheerful illustrations that capture the chaos and movement from that night. [picture book, ages 4 and up]

Read more…

Parenting With Purpose from Sleeping Should Be Easy

Parenting With Purpose from Sleeping Should Be Easy

Parenting With Purpose from Sleeping Should Be EasyMy blogging friend, Nina Garcia of Sleeping Should Be Easy, has a new book out called Parenting With Purpose!

http://sleepingshouldbeeasy.com/parenting-with-purposeRead more…

Books About Cancer For Kids

Books About Cancer For Kids and Teens

October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month. My mother is a breast cancer survivor so this is a topic dear to my heart. I’ve gathered up books for kids and teens about cancer. What am I missing? Thanks for your help!

Henry and the White Wolf by Tyler Karu and Tim Karu

This is the right picture book to help very young children understand what it’s like to have cancer. Told through animal characters, a young hedgehog gets sick and his mother seeks the white wolf for help. Henry loses his quills and fur and has to drink terrible tasting elixers that make him very tired but eventually, he is well enough so that they can return home. The smooth stone that the white wolf gives Henry reminds him that he’s a strong, brave hedgehog. [picture book, ages 3 and up]

Read more…

VolunteerSpot

Wrangling Volunteers #SignUpSpot

My son will be graduating from elementary school this year. The 5th grade parents raise money all year for the graduation festivities which includes a grade-wide field trip, a commemorative t-shirt, and a year book. The fundraising activities include a pumpkin raffle and a bake sale held during election day since voters will come to the school.

VolunteerSpot Read more…

4 Early Chapter Book Giveaway! #ScholasticBranches

4 Early Chapter Book Giveaway! #ScholasticBranches

I’m really excited about this new series of early chapter book from Scholastic called Scholastic Branches.

scholastic branches early chapter books

The Branches line is solely made up of series. They want young readers to return to their favorite characters again and again—because that is how they build reading stamina and confidence!

There is a Branches book for every kid! According the Kids and Parents Reading Report™: Fifth Edition 73% of kids believe that they would read more if they could find more books that they like.  With 14 different series and counting Branches delivers on providing kids with plenty of choices, so every reader can find the perfect book for them.

Does your kid love to laugh? Perfect! There is the zany and hilarious Kung Pow Chicken.

Does your reader love a fantastical adventure? Dragon Masters has it all: Dragons, a Dragon Stone, a king, a wizard, and magic!

How about a spooky story? Eerie Elementary will have your young readers on the edge of their seats!

4 Early Chapter Book Giveaway!

I’m giving away four early chapter books from Scholastic Branches to one lucky winner! Please fill out the Rafflecopter below to enter.

 The Branches line is solely made up of series. We want young readers to return to their favorite characters again and again—because that is how they build reading stamina and confidence! · There is a Branches book for every kid! According the Kids and Parents Reading Report™: Fifth Edition 73% of kids believe that they would read more if they could find more books that they like. With 14 different series and counting Branches delivers on providing kids with plenty of choices, so every reader can find the perfect book for them. Does your kid love to laugh? Perfect! There is the zany and hilarious Kung Pow Chicken. Does your reader love a fantastical adventure? Dragon Masters has it all: Dragons, a Dragon Stone, a king, a wizard, and magic! How about a spooky story? Eerie Elementary will have your young readers on the edge of their seats! Read more…

Healthy Living for Elders #AgingWell

Healthy Living for Our Elders #AgingWell

Healthy Living for Elders #AgingWell

Aetna recently teamed up with Grandparents.com on a survey to find out what healthy means to more than 5,000 Grandparents.com members. There is a strong focus on connections between the past and the future.

  • Many grandparents these days live with family, with almost one in five respondents reporting that they live with children or other family at least some of the time. My mother lives alone but my sister lives nearby and sees her twice a week.
  • A grandparent never really retires: A large number of survey respondents still work either full- or part-time. My mom sells wellness products so I can attest to that! I think a part-time vocation keeps my mom active.
  • Grandparents are online! Almost half (46.3 percent) say they use mobile devices such as phones and tablets for Internet searches about health. My mom is on Facebook!
  • Grandparents have a health focus. More than a quarter (27.2 percent) say they wish they had started exercising 20 years ago. More than one in seven (14.4 percent) state they wish they had started taking better care of their emotional health 20 years ago through activities like yoga and meditation. My mom takes weight lifting and line dancing classes.

Read more…