Thursday, October 18, 2007

all kinds of book talk

I have totally loved the last three books that Emy and I have read together. She is in grade three but is reading at a grade 5-6 level at least; so she can read for hours on her own and do just fine. But still I really enjoy our time each night reading together. The time with her; the quiet cuddle time with no sisters in sight just us, and truth is I honestly really do enjoy these books myself! Reading out loud making all the different accents and voices, and together looking forward to what will unfold in our adventure tomorrow night. Deeelightful!
We are fairly picky with what goes in for our little people I have to say. You know the saying "garbage in garbage out" so we try to steer pretty clear of garbage and put in lots of good stuff for our girls. Now that her reading has moved beyond the younger stories it is a little bit harder to find good books that will challenge her reading and keep her mind occupied and entertained, while at the same time NOT being too old for her sweet 8 1/2 year old self, or containing "stuff" we wouldn't want her to read right now. Kind of like finding size 12 clothes that are still appropriate and "little girl" enough for an innocent little sweetheart in grade three, a challenge at times too I have to say.
Anyways , I am always up for book recommendations and so I thought some of you out here may be too. I am so so impressed with these three. they were each quite different but all good to the last page.

It is a great story of adventure and self discovery. And since the kids in the story are around her age Emy found it really fun to try and relate to them. As a bonus there is some cool learning about art history hidden in here as these two siblings hide out at the metropolitan museum of art in Manhattan in the 60s.

I never imagined a story about a mouse could be so entertaining ( but then again I was very skeptical of cartoons about Fish and cars LOL and they turned out to be great movies) This book made me excited to read more and want to keep reading even when it was well past bedtime and our time was up. Such adventure and a really cool perspective through the eyes of the different characters who make up the story. A Heartwarming tale about the strength of this little mouse who is too small and his ears are too big and in every way he doesn't fit in. It will give courage to any kid who has ever felt like that little mouse.

and Because of Winn-Dixie also by Kate.DiCamillo ( I really like her books!)
This book just comes alive with all of it's amusing characters. The story is made up of "outsiders" who all have wonderful stories to tell and lessons to teach....we really loved it.
note: I picked up the fairly recent movie because the book was so good, but it just doesn't compare, go for the book instead!

I was going to talk only about Emy's books but since I am talking books tonight, I have to say that the animal ark series has been really perfect for Tiara. We are on our third adventure with Mandy and James who are always saving an animal in trouble and Tiara who is a total animal lover, loves every minute of them. We are using our current "Beagle in a backpack" as a reward for getting dressed in the morning and getting to school smoothly because things were pretty rocky for awhile. She is such a determined little person that having something to work for is always good motivation to push past the troubles that may come for her. So she gets a whole chapter with me at night if all goes well and when things get tough we take away only one page at a time so she still has something to work for through the day. It is really helping. I had read "children are from heaven" by Dr John Grey when Emy was a toddler- and many times since. It is a wonderful book on positive parenting and I would highly recommend it to anyone with kids. He talks about rewarding them for what they do right instead of focusing on punishing what they do wrong, since kids really do want to please their parents. I love the idea of rewarding them with my time it is the most precious thing I can give them.

And since I have covered what the kids are reading I may as well share what I have been getting into lately. This past spring/summer I read The Alchemist three times ( yes liked it that much :) I got something different from it each time too just depending where I was at, The whole sisterhood of the travelling pants series- I had never read these when I was younger and always wanted to, it was fun and entertaining I listened to this one unabridged on audio book while I did the album track for CKU Nashville. It was nice to keep my mind busy for all of those hours, I do that often.
I read the time travellers wife- no comment really, it is what it is. well written and kept me reading but surprising at times and a bit too much for me. Not one I need to read again. I Finished Anne of Green Gables -I was such a fan growing up...still am, but it had been a long time and I wanted to read it again myself before reading it with Emy, just to be sure it was appropriate. mmmmmm that wonderfully imaginative Anne-girl inspires me LOL she reminds me of myself in many ways, needless to say I Loved it all over again! I jut finished a few books by Max Lucado He is such a wonderful writer and I always love his written perspective for both children and adults. It makes me think, makes me smile and makes me breathe a little bit deeper. And that brings us to right now; I have a few of Jeffrey Gittomer's books on the go in the van for school pick up days; He is great and the books are easy to read, I quite enjoy his writing, getting a lot from it. And Last but most definitely not least I am reading Ali's new Life artist far I would say it is a must have for any scrapbooker at any level, her best book so far. She has written all good books but this one just has that extra heart and it strikes a chord with me, inspires me, beyond just scrapbooking.

So that is my book blabber for tonight, happy reading :)


Susan Beth Breuner said...

Those are great books! I have a son, who doesn't read to himself as well as our daughter, but who loves his reading with Papa time. We face the same issues about wanting a certain level of challenge in the story without certain content. I think even girls would like a couple that he has read lately including: Anything from the Box Car Children series (classics) and Leapike Ridge (new, but wow!). Enjoy that special cuddle time - it is valuable beyond compare.
By the way, I met you back in Jan/Feb at CHA, and was so impressed! And since then I continue to be impressed - thus, I watch your blog! Thanks for sharing your talant and your life!

Angela said...

We are big readers at our house too. Some good kids series books I totally recommend are the Anne of Green Gables Series (you mentioned those) The Little House On the Prairie books...the Nancy Drew series...Anything by E.B. White...(Charlotte's Web, Stuart Little, The Trumpeter Swan....GREAT chapter books). Also Roald Dahl (Charlie and the Chocolate Factory). The Box car children would be good ones too (Those were mentioned by Beth Breuner)

There are just a ton of good books out there. Good luck in your search!

Anonymous said...

Wow, great book recommendations!! I'll have to pick some of those up! I just wanted to show you a layout I did with your daughter's flowers, they are so much fun! Thank you!!

Mauri said...

Having worked in the field of children's education and literacy in my former life, I love these suggestions. And I must include my all-time favorite children's book (yes, even more than the Anne books): Laddie: A True Blue Story by Gene Stratton-Porter. It is such a sweet story written from a young girl's perspective. As far as picture books go, there are so many good ones, but I love Mem Fox's books; Where is the Green Sheep? in particular.

Anonymous said...

Have you ever read The Hundred Dresses? It's by Eleanor Estes.
A very good book. I believe the grade level may be below what she is reading by a grade, maybe even two but still a wonderful book that could be read in a night or two.

Wendy WVG, Roseville, MN

Anonymous said...

Have you ever read The Hundres Dresses by Eleanor Estes? It's a great story. The reading level may be a bit below where she's at but it's a wonderful story.

Wendy WVG, Roseville, MN

Kristina said...

"From the Mixed Up Files....." is STILL my most favorite book ever and I am 50 years old. I read that book when I was the exact same age as Claudia in the story and I always have thought it would be so cool to "runaway" to MOMA.

I also enjoyed all of Catherine Wooley's books, Lois Lenski's and of course, Laura Ingalls Wilder.

I pop in here to your blog occasionally but this is the first time I've ever posted. I enjoy looking at your pages.

Anonymous said...

I recommend:

The Boxcar series, by Gertrude Warner

The little house on the prairie series, by Laura Ingalls Wilder

The Bobbsey Twins series, not sure of the author

Donna said...


Those books are Great!

I was also going to recommend the Boxcar Children series (But, I see that I've already been beaten to the punch. haha) I read those when I was in 3-4 grade. Also another series that I read about that age was The Narnia Series by C.S. Lewis. One more series that I loved. Was the Little House on the prairie Series by Laura Ingalls Wilder.

Hope that you and Emilea have a blast getting lost within all these books.

Take Care~

Britt(any) said...

I was just popping by your blog and saw "From the Mixed-Up Files" which is one of my all time favorite books EVER! If you want another REALLY good book, try "Chasing Vermeer" by Blue Balliet. It may be a bit advanced for third grade (maybe) but it is gooood. It's kind of like "The DaVinci Code" for kids, but without the controversy. :) Another good one is "Ida B." and many others! Can you tell I work with kids? :) But my all-time favorite is any book by Beverly Cleary. Classic stuff.

Tracie said...

CD - I read this thread when you first posted it and then forgot to ever write.

A great place for quality age appropriate reading lists is the Sonlight homeschool curriculum site ( I would request the catalog so you can page through it at your leisure. We have LOVED the read-alouds listed in their curriculum!

Hope that helps!

Anonymous said...

I would highly recommend the Mandie series by Lois Gladys Leppard. It is a fantastic series with a great Christian message. Check them out at . I loved them as a girl, and I still love them now!

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