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Showing posts from May, 2013

{Project 101} Weekly Library Challenge: Construction + Michael J. Fox...

If you follow the blog, you know all about Project 101, the Weekly Library Challenge, where I share a library book that has been a favorite of the boys from the past week and a library book that I have been reading that week. By the end of the year, 101 library books will have been featured in honor of the fact that the County of Los Angeles Public Library (our library) is celebrating its 101st birthday. 
Two weeks ago, we shared 100+ children's books related to transportation, and I cannot believe we managed to leave The Construction Crew by Lynn Metzer off the list. We have checked it out from the library before, but like it so much that we checked it out again. Of course, Wild Thing (3.5) and Caterpillar (almost 2) love seeing all the different types of trucks featured in the book, particularly the truck with the wrecking ball, and enjoy watching the construction crew build and paint. Something I appreciate about the book is the diversity of the construction works, not only ethn…

{Kid's Co-Op} Fun Summer Learning Activities to Help Get Your Child Ready for Preschool

This time of year brings graduation photos of all types, including lots of preschool graduation photos on Facebook, which are SO CUTE!! It also, for many of us, involves enrolling our children in preschool for next year for the first time. I recently had my enrollment meeting with the supervisor of the preschool that Wild Thing will attend in August and, of course, she went over some of the things that they expect the children to be able to do -- many of these things are not academic, but rather involve a certain level of independence in the child (like getting dressed by themselves). This got me thinking -- are there things I can do this summer to get my child ready for the big day on August 12th? The answer, of course, is yes! Plus, I realize, these things can be fun or, as Deborah Stewart of Teach Preschool suggests I can fill his summer with experiences that will engage him and prepare, while he has fun. (By the way, Deborah as over 25 years of early childhood education experienc…

{Project 101} Weekly Library Challenge: 5 Beach Books for Mamas (and perhaps some Papas too)

Recently, I fell behind with Project 101, the Weekly Library Challenge, where I share a favorite book that the boys have been reading from the library that week and one book that I have been reading too. First, it was Screen Free Week so I didn't post, then travel to Chicago  for a family get-together, and then my laptop died. This meant that for three weeks I did not share any books. I began the process of making up for it a week ago when I shared 100 of our favorite transportation books for the boys. Now to get caught up on what I have been reading from the library, I am sharing five of my recent library favorites as beach reads (or everyday books) that I think parents would enjoy and appreciate - each book, in its own way, underscores the importance and joy that comes from embracing the time we have with our families -- a perfect thing to be reminded of as summer approaches and the days are longer, school is out and family time can be savored. Here's 5 picks (4 of which I r…

{The Weekly Kid's Co-Op} Summer Reading List

Last week, The Weekly Kid's Co-Op was full of great book lists and book-related activities. I have been adding many new books to our library list to get ready for summer reading. So, I have rounded up some of the best book list/activities posts from last week to help you build your summer reading list too. I find that having "new" books on hand in the summer is a big hit, especially for reading at the park, on car trips or even on a blanket in the backyard.


Children's Book Choice Awards shared by Pragmatic Mom provides top books in several age ranges. Her site is a great resource for compiling a summer reading list for your child.

Happy Birthday Author shared a number of Adam Rex books, which I am definitely adding to our library list as well as a cool way to extend Billy Twitters and His Blue Whale Problem, and his site is another great resource for children's books.

JDaniel4's Mom shared 18 of their favorite books and related activities. Her site is a major go…

{Virtual Book Club for Kids} My Little Boys with Little Blue and Little Yellow - Move, Eat, Draw and Learn with Leo Leonni

With all of our Virtual Book Club for Kids posts, we like to move, eat, draw and learn with our selected book. Check out all the fun we had with little blue and little yellow by Leo Lionni. 

1. Move - This book provides lots of movement play inspiration and ideas -- perfect for a playdate where your little one and their best friend wear blue and yellow. Like the friends in the book, kids can play Hide-and-Seek, Ring-a-Ring-O'Roses, tag or even climb a mountain. 

2. Eat - We made a yellow, green and blue fruit salad (pineapple, honeydew and blueberries). But the big hit, of course, were our little blue and little yellow cookies inspired by various pages of the book: the 1st page with little blue only, then (a few pages later) little blue and little yellow together, then the Ring-a-Ring-O'Roses page, and the colors running and plying after school followed by (skipping to the end) yellow and blue making green and then just green (the last page). We also had a cookie of green chasin…

{2 for 1} Kid's Co-Op & Weekly Library Challenge: 100+ Children's Book Featuring Things That Go + Transportation Play Ideas

In this post, I am hoping/trying to make up for being so absentee. It started with Screen Free Week at the end of April and beginning of May, which was followed by a trip to Chicago for a week for a family get-together during which time my laptop went completely bonkers!! (I have had it for 6 years, but still...) My new one will arrive on Wednesday, and I am lucky enough to be able to use a work laptop that is currently not needed for any of our youth programs. In short, though, this leaves me 3 weeks behind with The Weekly Library Challenge! Yikes!! So, I am sharing way more than three library books the boys have been reading in order to make up for it. I am sharing 100 of our favorite transportation books, plus some great transportation play and learning ideas from The Kid's Co-Op last week. This means, that next week, I will share 4 library books that I have been reading to get caught up. Hoping I can do it. 

For the transportation books, there are two authors in particular whos…

Sibling Play: Sandbox!

Things have been quiet on the blog lately because of Screen Free Week last week and travel and extended family time this week. Knowing that I would have less time for the blog I asked Maryann from Mama Smiles if she would be interested in writing a guest post on sibling play, since I always find such great sibling moments, play ideas and activities on her wonderful blog. I am happy to share her post on siblings and sand play! 


My kids are pretty good friends, but they get along best when we are outdoors - and getting them set up at the sandbox is one of the easiest ways to initiate outside play time! 

Sandboxes are pretty amazing - they can entertain babies through any age, so long as you are willing to let yourself play. After all, who doesn't love the beach - nature's most beautiful sandbox!

You don't need much to build a sandbox. We found our current one for free at the curb, but before that we used an underbed storage bin - it's a great size for a couple of toddlers…