The Wacky Book of Witches

Move over Waldo!  The Wacky Book of Witches by Annie Civardi (words) and Graham Philpot (pictures) is perfect for this time of year! Neither a simple hunt-and-find book, nor just a great story, The Wacky Book of Witches weaves the two together in a remarkably enchanting way. (more…)

Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 8:11 pm  Leave a Comment  

Diary of a Wombat


Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 6:20 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Jolly Postman (or Other People’s Letters)

“Once upon a bicycle, so they say, a jolly postman came one day from over the hills and far away…”

So begins one of those books that, once you’ve read it, you will never forget. I can remember the first time I laid hands on a copy, and I particularly remember that it wasn’t mine.  Sadly, I never owned a copy as a child, but when I had a child of my own, I made sure she had a copy in her library (two in fact). (more…)

Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 3:33 pm  Leave a Comment  

J is for Jack-O’-Lantern: A Halloween Alphabet

I love the autumn; it’s my favourite time of year!  The leaves, the cool nights, the pumpkin pies, and Hallowe’en!  But with two little ones, I’m not looking for the truly scary bits of Hallowe’en, but the fun, cozy-creepy stuff: smiling ghosts, and sing-along songs, and orange socks, and good books!  I’m also a big fan of learning new things all the time, so I particularly appreciate Denise Brennan-Nelson‘s J is for Jack-O’-Lantern: A Halloween Alphabet. It’s a poem, and an alphabet book, and a Hallowe’en encyclopedia all in one! (more…)

Published in: on October 28, 2010 at 1:26 pm  Leave a Comment  

Two by Two

Recently I was at a second-hand store for kids and spied Two by Two by Barbara Reid.  I was stunned to realize that we didn’t have any of her books in our (considerable) library of kids’ books.  Most particularly I was suprised because when I was growing up, Reid’s books were some of my favourites.  I mean, you’d have to be a particularly nasty kind of curmudgeonly snob to suggest that her artwork isn’t simply amazing! And it’s all done with plasticine! Just look: (more…)

Published in: on October 26, 2010 at 2:52 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Quiet Book

My daughter is an actress.  And I say this with not an ounce of condescension. I’m pretty sure she could give classes on it. She has this ability to get into character and emulate like no other little person I know!  Along with this incredible ability comes the love of an audience and volume. ‘Cause nothing makes acting more entertaining than doing it loudly in front of people. And her inspiration? Well, there’s a whole lot of my hubby and I in there, a bit of her younger brother, and a lot of her books and movies.  So when my sister spied The Quiet Book by Deborah Underwood, illustrations by Renata Liwska, the potential was immediately obvious. (more…)

Published in: on October 26, 2010 at 2:28 pm  Leave a Comment  

George and the Dragon

Every family has its own traditional newborn book.  In my family it was always Goodnight Moon by Margaret Wise Brown, pictures by Cement Hurd.  Every newborn in our circle of family and friends could count on receiving at least one copy, and usually several (hardcover, softcover, board book — my daughter even got one with slippers that matched the ones from the book!).  I had always assumed I would continue that tradition; but I’ve changed my mind.


Published in: on October 19, 2010 at 8:08 pm  Leave a Comment  

The Stories of Childhood

One of my favourite spots in the house!

I love children’s books.  I love the look, the feel, and the smell of them.  I love how my daughter always wants one more book at bedtime. I love how she asks me to read her stories while she eats her peanut butter toast. I love how she learns from them: how to problem solve, how to explore, how to dream, how to imagine.

And not just her books. We don’t have cable (which here means no television at all), so we instead have a fair number of movies on DVD and VHS.  And oddly, the VHS ones are pretty good.  Some of them are just the traditional Disney movies that we haven’t bothered buying on DVD ’cause we have a good VCR, but some of them will likely never see DVD. Like Nellie the Elephant, or the old stop-motion Noddy.

So I thought it might be a nice idea to write about those books, and movies, and even toys, that I see inspiring my daughter’s imagination.  Probably nothing too controversial here; just cozy, well loved stories! Stick around, and let me know what books and movies you love and love to share with your kids.

Published in: on October 19, 2010 at 5:28 pm  Leave a Comment