children's books, childrens books, children's book reviews, best children's books, learning manners, learning punctuation, learning, reading, kids, parenting

The Fantastic Few, my favorite-not-so-well-known children’s books. Theme: Learning

Hey friends!

It’s been awhile. I had an idea 4 years ago to post about quality children’s books because I’ve been frustrated with the random judge-a-book-by-its-cover library pulls. And 4-10 years is about how quickly my ideas are rolling out! The plan is to put out a few fantastic children’s books every few weeks.

These won’t all be new books because some of the best are oldies I’ve never heard of. And that makes me think of a midlife crisis.

I’ll spot-light those quality authors/illustrators that make reading more fun for kids and adults. Because if you like the book, you’ll be happier reading it 5,000 times.

The three this week have a theme: learning (aka: the fun kind… where you don’t know what’s happening, you’re just suddenly smarter)

#1 Crazy Like a Fox A Simile Story by Loreen Leedy

This book cleverly teaches kids about similes through a story of a fox chasing a sheep. Don’t worry, it has a very happy ending. My 4-year-old was spouting off similes in her everyday speech after reading this book and her simile abilities quickly outwitted mine. Here’s a quote: “In the quiet forest, Rufus is sleeping like a log. He snores like a chain saw! It’s as loud as thunder!”

 

#2 Suppose You Meet a Dinosaur, A First Book of Manners by Judy Sierra illustrated by Tim Bowers

The illustrations are so engaging in this cute story about a little girl meeting a hip middle-aged dino who at one point drops her hot pink glasses. The little girl hands them back and in the process teach kiddos about when to say “please” and “thank you”. And it rhymes! Here’s a quote: “The dinosaur then gives you four banana chips (which you adore). She asks you, ‘Would you like some more?’ How do you answer the dinosaur?”

 

#3 Exclamation Mark by Amy Krouse Rosenthal & Tom Lichtenheld

If you want to introduce the concept of exclamation and question marks without being boring, this book brings those punctuation tools to life. The exclamation mark is overly excited and the question mark asks too many questions! A quote wouldn’t really make sense here because the pictures do so much of the story telling.

I’d love to hear your favorites too! Enjoy the end to summer with some quality reading on these hot afternoons!

beauty, childhood, motherhood, media, objectification, female, femininity, toenails, eyelashes, value, sexualization, #womennotobjects, #redefiningbeauty, #killingussoftly

Is Femininity Defined by Eyelashes and Toenails?

Published earlier today on huffingtonpost.com

“Mommy, I know it’s a girl on TV when she has big eyelashes,” my four-year-old said confidently during a reluctant potty break from her favorite show.

She’s totally right—though men and women actually have the same eyelashes when they wake up in the morning. Girls, both cartoons and real, are portrayed on television with a signature trait: eye makeup. Even our beloved baby Margaret on Daniel Tiger’s Neighborhood has enhanced eyelashes when compared to her brother. And don’t even get me started on Elsa. 

It hit me that my daughter’s first identifier of femininity was, in reality, fake.

I started thinking about all the other steps a typical woman takes, beyond what a typical man would do, just to get ready for the day. The list goes something like this:
Continue reading

gender wage gap, working moms, working women, grad school mom, parenting, motherhood, childcare, caregivers

The Mother Induced Gender Wage Gap

I was talking about the gender wage gap with one of the professors in my Masters of Social work program last week between classes. To be there, I had arranged childcare, driven 45 minutes, paid a lot of money in tuition, and felt entirely rushed to return to my 2 and 4-year-old as soon as possible. So, every second must be extremely productive.

I’m not a great person to be friends with since I’m only on campus for class and then I dart home to help with dinner, bedtime, or begin to tackle loads of homework.

Back to the conversation with this professor: I was informing him of some reading I did on the impact of pornography on the sexualization of girls and women in society and how some argue that sexualization/ objectification is partly to blame for the gender wage gap. If you think about how women are portrayed predominantly as sex objects in all forms of media, then it makes sense that women wouldn’t be taken seriously in big decisions or for leadership roles. Objectification takes away person-hood and makes a person an object for another person’s pleasure. And nobody would make an object the CEO. Continue reading

I Ruined My Child’s Life Over a Tortilla

I’m part of an online mom’s group where we share parenting struggles. We all have 4-year-olds and there’s a trend emerging among our kids lately. They are saying things like: “You are the worst mommy ever!”, “I hate you mommy!” and “I wish Jessica was my mommy and not you”. Thanks for being so awesome, Jessica.

It’s both hilarious and heartbreaking considering all that a parent does for their kid only to get verbally slapped in the face. Continue reading

Tips and Tricks for Babies Part 2, how to raise a baby, how to get my baby to sleep, sleep training, sleep issues for moms, sleep tips, sleep tricks,

Tips and Tricks for Babies Part 2

As some of you know, having a new baby is not as easy as all those sleepy newborn photos make it look. A few weeks ago I posted Tips and Tricks for Babies Part 1 and because the list was so long, I created Part 2. Here is some unsolicited advice, since you didn’t ask! Continue reading

mom thoughts, the thought record of a mom for 1 hour as she tries to decide on a preschool

A Thought Record of a Mom for 1 Hour Trying to Decide on a Preschool

An attempt to record my words and thoughts for about an hour on a normal Wednesday morning.

“No you can’t eat that cereal when you’re sick it has too much sugar”. What should I do with the kids today, should I take them to that new soccer thing? But it’s kind of expensive. But I think it could be really good for my daughter to learn some soccer skills when she’s young because what she learns now will be so much more natural later. But will she even like soccer? I don’t think she likes it. Continue reading

stay at home dad, dad stays home, working mom, dads at the park

What it’s like to be a Stay at Home Dad

Being a stay at home mom, I know that there are many other moms in the same place with whom I can find camaraderie. That wouldn’t necessarily be the case for a stay at home dad. It is becoming more common for dads to stay home, but it is still counter cultural and with that I suspect come unique challenges. I reached out to one of the stay at home dads I know and asked If he could write about his experience. Here are his thoughts: Continue reading

Why I Chose to be a Stay at Home Mom, SAHM, parenting

Why I Chose to be a Stay at Home Mom

I was going to write about my choice to stay home mom a few years ago when it was fresh. It’s a decision many new parents struggle with. But then I got scared. What if I offended someone? It’s such a touchy topic. So the idea died, as most of my half-written drafts do (the reasons for my fears and paralysis in writing might come out in another post one day, if I’m not too scared to write it:). Continue reading

mother of drool, motherhood, parenting tips, mom hacks, how to raise a child, baby tips, how to give a baby a bath

Tips and Tricks for Babies Part 1

All parents learn tricks to survive the years when their children are little… and sometimes it really does take years to get to a place where you don’t feel like you’re in panic mode every second. Or is it that you just get used to panic mode? Regardless, tricks, and not the magic kind, do help. Every parent figures out what works for their family, but sometimes those insights are transferable. Continue reading

parenting, new parents, raising kids, dadlife, dads, fatherhood, motherhood, kids, babies, toddlers, Preschoolers

Parenting is…

Parenting is:

Feeling like you should just set up a tent at Target.

Having one child fall on their head while the other pees their pants and the doorbell rings. Continue reading