May 28, 2009

Camping With Family and Friends

I love my children. I love them so much, I give up my bed to sleep on the ground for two nights. But, I do reap the rewards of eating s'mores with them, wiping their marshmallow and chocolate-covered faces clean so I can see their sweet, sweet smiles.
This weekend is our annual camping trip with two other families. While I love my yard and gardening, I don't consider myself an outdoorsy kinda gal. I abhorred the thought of joining the Girl Scouts as a child. Luckily for me, my gal pals feel the same way. We were lucky to find a camp ground last year with a lake, real potties and showers, a convenience store, and an ice cream stand across the way. Oh, and gotta love the pride some campers take in their campsites.

So, I'm looking for recommendations on picture books about camping. We currently have two books about camping, and while the kiddies enjoy them, I'm always on the look-out for a good book. The first book is an easy reader, PJ Funnybunny Camps Out. I like this one because my daughter can practice her reading with it. The other is a Dora book, and what kid doesn't love that little Latina adventurer? Dora's Camping Trip was a good introduction for my kids first year of camping, but we're looking for something new. Send me your recommendations for favorite books about camping!

May 22, 2009

Down On The Farm

I haven't met a child yet that doesn't love baby animals. (My own kiddies first signs of intelligent life came out as "moo" and "meow.") Imagine the fun of taking your kids to a farm with baby animals that they are allowed pet and cuddle. Just outside of Dayton is such a place, Learning Tree Farm. My son's Pre-school Co-op met for the last time at Learning Tree this past week.

I can't think of many things sweeter than a baby kitten, except maybe for baby goats, and baby lambs, baby pigs....

We spent the morning laughing, chasing chickens, swinging over bales of hay, and telling our kids to re-enact the opening sequence to Little House on the Prairie as they ran through the tall grass. (Yes, they did wonder what the heck we were talking about.)

One of my all-time, favorite picture books is Big Red Barn. We've had it in a board book (we're on our second copy) since my daughter was born. It may be the first book I ever read to her. I love the simplicity of it. It is the perfect book to read to your baby or toddler. The pictures are appealing, the text is rhythmic, and what child can resist crowing like a rooster or mooing like a cow?
I can't wait to read E. B. White's Charlotte Web to my kiddies! What's your favorite farm book to read with your kids?

May 8, 2009

Tooth News

Big things are happening here in our house. What could be more momentous in a 5 year-old's life than losing that first tooth? (At this point in the year, possibly the arrival of summer vacation may be, but let's go with the tooth thing.)
Do you remember what it was like to feel the "pop" of the nerve breaking and your tiny tooth coming out? Or the sensation of sticking your tongue through the gap of where your tooth once was? Is my daughter officially a "big kid?" It's definitely bye-bye babyhood.
To prep our girl for the arrival of the tooth-fairy, we read Twinkle the Tooth Fairy. There are two reasons I like this book. 1) It was a gift from my grandmother to my daughter (my grandmother passed away two years ago) 2) It comes with a little "velvet" pouch for the tooth (no need to worry about losing those little suckers in bed- and oh-my, they are little!)
Earlier in the year, to encourage good oral-hygiene, we purchased The Tooth Book: A Guide to Healthy Teeth and Gums. The kiddies love this one; it's detailed and informative without being boring or over their heads.

It's looking like the tooth fairy will be putting in another appearance here this weekend. My daughter will be one dollar closer to her goal of buying that laptop she wants. Yes, a laptop. I know it sounds like an extravagant purchase for a 5 year-old, but check out my link to One Laptop Per Child, it's a beautiful thing!