Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Thursday, April 16, 2009

the great tollipop giveaway

I just heard about a super cool giveaway on Tollipop.com!

To enter the contest,go to Tollipop.com leave a comment . There are, however, several ways to procure additional entries that you can check out on her site!


Comments will be open until my bedtime this Friday (April 17th), whenever that may be, and over the weekend I will announce the winners.

Thursday, March 12, 2009

Earth Tales First Project

Bedtime in my house consists of tubbies, pjs, brushing teeth, and (my favorite part) bedtime stories! Most, if not all, families have some sort of bedtime ritual which is done every night with varying degrees of success (at least in my house). Last night we decided to begin reading Earth Tales, a great new title from Barefoot Books.

Discover how the rest of the world is 'Living Green'!

The Barefoot Book of Earth Tales -
In this beautiful anthology of folktales, young readers learn how different cultures around the world live in harmony with the rhythms and patterns of nature. Discover how to tread lightly on our precious Earth by following the easy eco-tips and trying out some of the fun and creative activities that accompany each story

The perfect gift for any earth-conscious child!

We read the first story which is the Aboriginal tale of the begin of the world. Gabbie exhausted from a full day of running around like a monkey fell asleep part way through the story. Theo and I finished reading the story and were delighted to find a fun activity. Since it was 8 pm we planed to get painting as soon as we finished breakfast.

The directions said to use a brown or tan piece of paper...we opted for a brown paper bag. We really do our best to bring reusable bags to the grocery store, but every once in awhile we either forget, or buy more groceries than the bags we have brought will hold. I guess we have been doing a great job of remembering to bring bags with, since we were only able to find one bag.

We were instructed to create a picture using colors you would find in nature, like the Aboriginal people would use in there drawings. Colors like brown, red, yellow, and green we decided on the tempera paint that came with our art box. The directions suggested using paint brushes, cotton balls, fingers, and a few other things to create the Aboriginal art work, we figured paint brushes and fingers were enough for us. Using an empty pickle bottle to carry out some water to clean our brushes between color and we were ready.
We gathered up our supplies and headed out onto the porch.

After cutting up our bag into four nice sized bits we got down to business.

The directions explained that Aboriginal art work tended to be a about an aerial view of places and things. We used dots, circles, lines, representing things like grass, water, and bushes. Above you can see Theo's picture of a walk in the park.

Theo put the finishing touches on his second picture of the bush he saw covered in butterflies.

Here are the finished works of art! Gabbie had a lot of fun with dots. I asked her what the dots meant and she looked at me as though I was a small silly child and said in her best my silly mommy voice, "Mommy they are just dots".

Barefoot Books will be planting trees in partnership with Eco-Libris, for each copy of Earth Tales sold in the till the end of April in honor of Earth Day. If you would like to purchase a copy of this fantastic new title or check out what other great books please visit my Barefoot Books site;

Or to learn more about planting trees to offset the publishing industry you can visit Eco-Libris;

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Birthday!!! No Way 8

So, my super boy turned 8 yrs old last month. I really can't believe just how big he is. Not just how amazingly tall (and he really is tall) but more how he is turning into such a wonderful person. Since, heading back to school in January he has grown as a person so much. He has some great new friends and is really working hard to learn to read.

While Theo was at school I ran all over the place getting decorations for the house. We have not had the "friend party" yet but we have had two family parties. The cake pictures below is from the party we had with my parents on the night of Theo's birthday. It was the first time since Theo turn 1 that my parents were able to be with us on Theo's birthday.

This is one of my favorite pictures of Theo from his first birthday! I made the flower crown for him. It probably took me 2 hrs to make and I am sure he really didn't want to wear it...but it looks so incredibly cute on him.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Ruby Sky (Whoo Hoo Thats Right!)

Saturday: March 14 - 2pm-5pm

Ruby Skye Presents


Baby Loves Disco transforms San Francisco's hottest club into a child proof disco as children (6 month to 7 years) and parents looking for a break from the routine playground circuit let loose for an afternoon dance party featuring real music spun by real DJs blending classic disco. Plus, bubble machines, a chill-out area, diaper changing stations, a full spread of healthy snacks AND optional cocktails for non-driving parents.

Saturday afternoon is the new Saturday night. Come join us!

Advance tickets at: PURCHASE TICKETS

New Friends

After moving 2,000 miles it can be a bit hard to find your way. Lucky, for us we lived in the Bay area pre-kids so we kinda know our way around. We are finally feeling a bit more settled after almost 6 months :) Oh, and I am way behind on posts... So for the next week or so I am going to be posting a bunch to try and catch up!

It is so funny to think that when you are young and in school making friends is like walking, it takes little thought, once you get the hang of it. After you leave school and especially if you are an at home mom, making friends takes work, sigh....

At last resort you end up making friends at your kids school, lol! Anyway, we have some great new friends with children around the same ages as ours. (Which makes hanging out much easier.) They came over a couple of weeks ago for dinner and brought us a master piece of confection for dessert!

Yummy! Really, it looks amazing and it tastes even better. This heavenly desert was enjoyed by all. (Even Theo who is pickier than anyone loved it!)

Thank you! T.K.T.J!!!!

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Year of the Ox

To celebrate the Chinese New Year Theo's class had moon cakes! Theo being the sweet big brother he is ( and an incredible picky eater) brought home his moon cake for his sister. Theo also brought in a copy of the Great Race to share with his class. The Great Race is a fantastic book that tells the story of the Chinese Zodiac.
Gabbie and her class painted a card board box and used it to make a dragon head for there parade! So fun!!!

The Great Race - Hardcover

The Story of the Chinese Zodiac
Which animal will win the race and get the first year of the Chinese calendar named after them?

Race long with Rat, Monkey, Dragon, and their companions while discovering the origin of the Chinese Zodiac. This bright and colorful book includes intriguing notes about the Chinese calendar, the festivals, and the animal that rules each year.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Poem By Gabbie

I am Boxer
I am Boxer
and I am a Dragon

I am a Dragon
I am a Dragon
and I am a Princess

And that's it!

Gabbie 3 1/2

Friday, January 23, 2009

Barefoot Books is CSPIA Compliant

Safety Information

The health and safety of the children for whom we create our books is the top priority.

All of our products comply with the Consumer Product Safety Improvement Act of 2008. Barefoot Books products also exceed the more stringent safety standards required under European Union (EU) law.

Barefoot Books CPSIA Certificate of Compliance is also available here.

In addition to manufacturing our own products, we distribute puppets manufactured by Folkmanis and puzzles and games manufactured by Mudpuppy Press. These partner companies products also comply with CPSIA requirements.

For more information go to www.ReadingBarefootBooks.com

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

It Is Official We Are No Longer Happy Homeschoolers

That is exactly how I feel; Lost & Found .... or maybe it is Happy & Sad? Our homeschooling journey began about a year and a half ago. We became homeschoolers in part out of curiosity and part out of need. For kindergarten our son went to an amazing private school which we loved, but could not afford on one income. With a new baby at home we knew that we were going to have to have financial aid, which is what we told the said private school.

We were given financial aid for kindergarten and I spent every moment I could volunteering for the school. With my little baby girl on my back I even set up a book fair. Long story short the administration changed during our first year and we were not given financial aide for the second year. As it would happen we found this out in the middle of the summer and were left with little options in the way of schools that late in the game. So we decided to try our hands at homeschooling.

Luckily for us Chicago has an amazing homeschooling community. (which we took full advantage of) Tons of great classes and wonderful people all supporting each other in homeschooling there children.

Fast forward to this past September when we moved to California.... It became apparent rather quickly that our little girl really wanted to go to school. Our move left us with in a new state with no playdates and poor Gab missed her friends. We found an amazing preschool and began to learn about Parent Participation schools. We mentioned that we were toying with the idea of school for Theo and Gab's teach suggested the elementary parent participation school, her kids went too.

Theo had begun to ask about maybe, possibly going to school again. He too was missing his friends back in Chicago and we were having trouble finding other homeschoolers here. But what kind of school would welcome a former homeschooling family with open arms? And Theo had never been to a "normal" school would it be fair to just send him to a school and see what would happen. (no way we are so not that kind of family)

Both Gab and Theo also began taking gymnastics classes in hopes of meeting new people and of course they also wanted to learn gymnastics. After the first class Theo had made a couple of new friends and couldn't wait for the next class! Gab had a great time also. During the second class I was chatting with another mom of one of Theo's classmates, she suggested the same school Gab's teacher suggested. I was starting to see a pattern forming ... people we like, like this school. We decided to check it out for ourselves.

Love at first site is a good way of characterizing our experience. Both my husband I fell in love with this school. It just felt right. So after a few weeks and much anticipation today was Theo's first day at his new school.

Mom really? Must you take my picture?

And they are off.

Ok, maybe I am a little excited about my first day!

And there he goes ... my sweet boy.

P.S. He told me he had a GREAT day!

Monday, January 19, 2009

You And Me

New In Lap Book!

The imaginary games of a boy and a girl form the basis of this enchanting picture book about opposites and contrasts. As the two children play together, they picture themselves as all kinds of characters, animals, landscapes and moods. "I'm a circle, you're a square; I'm a tiger, you're a bear."

Celebrating difference, but above all celebrating relationship, You and Me is a very special picture book that will captivate pre-school audiences but is also sure to attract plenty of adult fans.

This is a great early reader. It has all of the things you look for in a beginning reading book. The pictures tell the story. It has repetition but is far from boring. With illustrations that speak to the imagination and perk curiosity this book is so fun to read.

The second time my son read us You and Me he pointed out to his younger sister "Gab did you notice that they are opposites?" It is so much fun to see them discuss books. Theo further explained "See Gab I am Hot and You're Cold, they are opposites."

For the past week Theo has read us You and Me every night! He has begun to read it from the back to the front... just to change things up!

If you would like to learn more about You and Me or Barefoot Books click below.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Children's Books Numbers, Big and Small

Partial review of one of my favorite books for those who enjoy a great mathematical tale!
By JIM HOLT Published: January 9, 2009

For the slightly older child, “The Real Princess: A Mathemagical Tale” ought to prove a beguiling mix of number lore and fairy tale. The plot elements will be familiar: three princes looking for brides, a king with three bags of gold and a queen with nine magic peas. But running through Brenda Williams’s story is a riot of numerical coincidences, some turning on the curious fact that if you take various multiples of nine (18, 27, 36, 45 etc.) and add up the digits (1+8, 2+7, 3+6, 4+5), you always get nine back again. This is the kind of hidden pattern that children delight in discovering. And if some of the artsier parents fail to get it, they’ll at least smile at Sophie Fatus’s illustrations, which have a little of Marc Chagall in them, and a little of Joan MirĂ³.