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

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.