Jul 31, 2009

Shower The Ones You Love With Books

What do you get for a pregnant friend who already has all the practical essentials? Something truly essential... books! I was fortunate to attend a baby shower for my friend Tracy, who is having her second child any day (she hopes!). The hostess asked that the attendees bring a book as a gift for the baby. I love this idea! I wanted to get some board books that could stand up to the wear and tear of two boys. So, my kiddies and I headed to the bookstore (yipee!) to pick out some books. I was happy to find The Monster at the End of This Book in board book. I also found a baby-sized version of Ten Little Ladybugs, called Five Little Ladybugs. It's adorable! One of the guest at the shower gifted this amazing book:

I do love giving books as gifts! What is your favorite book to give as a gift, or what book do you think would make a great baby shower gift?

Jul 15, 2009

Me and E.B.

Remember how I said I couldn't wait to read my kids Charlotte's Web? Well, I also wanted to have it to read it to me! Who better than the author himself, Mr. E. B. White? With all the traveling we've been doing this summer, I thought some books on CD would be a good way to pass the time in the car. Yea me, because it was a great idea!
From Dayton, Ohio, to my parents house in Michigan is a pretty nondescript drive. I've driven that route so many times I could do it with my eyes closed. I may try it some time, so watch out people on I-75! Listening to E.B. White read Charlotte's Web while I drove, made me feel like I was settling in a comfy spot to listen to a dear old friend tell a tale. There are some amazingly theatrical people out there who read books on audio, and do a wonderful job. They have unique voices for each character, their villains are chilling and their heroines are charismatic. E. B. does none of this, except for his voice for Templeton does have a sneer to it, and forever more his voice for Templeton is my voice for Templeton. No, there's no theatrics from Mr. White, just his own voice, reading his best-loved story in his even, east coast accent. (I love the way he says the word barn, it's very New England sounding in its pronunciation.) I've cherished E. B. White's writing since I was in the third grade and my teacher read aloud The Trumpet of the Swan. Now I love him even more for telling me his tale in his own voice. What audio books do you love? Send me your recommendations.

Jul 2, 2009

Vacation Finds

What a wonderful trip to Michigan! The kiddies thoroughly enjoyed the lake and all the fun that came with it. They especially loved the lighthouses and catching tadpoles in the tide pools. I believe that childhood summer vacations should be full of things that make the memories that you carry with you your whole life. I think, I hope, that is what I achieved with our Michigan trip this summer.

On the way up to Presque Isle, we stopped in East Tawas at a little bookstore I remember visiting on my previous trips. East Tawas is a quaint town on the shores of Lake Huron. The Book Nook is just what you would expect in a small tourist town. Sorry, they don't have a website to link to. I went there with the hopes of finding a picture book about Michigan history or folklore. I was not disappointed with the selection. I eventually chose M Is For Mitten: A Michigan Alphabet because it covered a spectrum of all things Michigan, from petoskey stones to Vernor's ginger ale. It's almost two books in one, because part of each page is devoted to the letter of the alphabet and is written in rhyme, while another part of the page is a small history lesson. M is For Mitten is one book in a series of alphabet books for each state, so you may want to check out one for the state you live in, or will be vacationing in! I also picked up a fun, little book called I'm a Michigan Kid . It looks like a passport, but is more like a journal/record keeper of things children can do or see while visiting the Great Lakes State. My kids couldn't wait to write down which lighthouses we visited.
I'm heading off to Michigan again this week, this time for a funeral. But with the kids in tow, I want to make more summer memories part of our visit. We will be visiting another much loved spot, Crossroads Village and Huckleberry Railroad. History and fun all wrapped into one!