January 15, 2014

What We Read Last Week

Last year, I fell far short of my reading goals. I have years like that. I have years where I consume books like they’re wood and I’m a blazing fire. I have other years where I just can’t get into the reading groove. I usually end up feeling bad when the end of year rolls around and I’ve read so little. 2013 was one of those years. I read a paltry 18 books. Thank God for book group, because it pushed me to read more than I would have.

But, this year I knew I wanted to be more accountable and I wanted to read more. I NEED to read more. I’ve burst through the reading wall and have already read five books in the month of January (with another started and wistful eyeings of my bookcase).

Additionally, I want to try and encourage the little girls to read more of the books in our collection. We do read quite a bit, but we tend to fall back to the old standbys and favorites. I don’t know how many books the little girls own, but I’m guessing it’s probably in the hundreds and I’d like to read more than their favorite five.

So, here’s a brief overview of the books we read in the past week. Hopefully you find a new favorite for you or your little ones here.


What I Read:

The Center of Everything by Laura Moiarty

Evenlyn Bucknow is growing up poor in a small town.  The daughter of a single mother and the sister to a profoundly delayed brother, Evelyn is smart and careful.  This is a character driven novel, which is difficult for me.  There is no great climax and no real resolution.  It’s a piece of Evelyn’s life in small town Kansas where she and her mother are ostracized because Evelyn’s mother has had two children out of wedlock.  Kind of depressing and a little heavy, but not too heartbreaking.

There’s Cake in my Future by Kim Gruenenfelder

Chick lit all the way.  Girls meet boys.  Girl one is unsure about her relationship with amazing boy and nearly makes a major misstep before realizing how lucky and wonderful her life is.  Girl two thinks she’s in a great relationship, realizes he’s a dirty cheater and finds possibly true love when she dares herself to pick up a gorgeous guy at the bar.  Girl three is in love with her best friend, but he always seems to be in love with someone else.  They finally figure it out and it’s all happily ever after.

Cliche, but fun and great if you’re looking for something light.


What Littlebit Read Independantly

Nancy Clancy: Secret Admirer by Jane O’Connor

The second in the Nancy Clancy series, which is Fancy Nancy for kids who are a little more grown up.  We’ve moved through the Nancy picture books and easy reader chapter books, so Santa brought these to Littlebit in her stocking so we could follow Nancy on her second step.    At 130 pages, the book seems a little meaty for newly independent readers, but with large print and pictures scattered through out, it’s not too overwheleming

What I read to Littlebit and Baby Bee

I keep the books we read previously stacked up to try and encourage the girls to pick from the shelves so we can read more than just our handful of favorites.  Last week, the girls picked to read

Olivia by Ian Falconer. Olivia, the pig, has long been a favorite at our house and while the other books in the series are okay, the original is the best. I see so much of my three little girls in Olivia (“Olivia is good at lots of things. She is very good at wearing people out. She even wears herself out”)

Marvin K Mooney Would You Please Go Now by Dr. Seuss.  One of the least annoying Dr. Seuss books to read, in my opinion.

That’s Not my Dinosaur by Fionna Watt. I don’t think these books are being published anymore, which is a total bummer as we really like them. We have several including That’s Not my Snowman and That’s Not my Mermaid. They’re fun little sensory books, usually with something else hidden on the pages to find as well. The snowman book, for instance, has a little mouse on every page to find as well.

Mickey Mouse Clubhouse Carry Along Treasury  Well, this is a Baby Bee pick and, if I’m being honest, I kind of hate it a little bit. Thankfully, the stories are short and I limit Baby Bee to one or two at a time. Each page has little questions or “find its” to kind of enrich the reading experience.

Up North at the Cabin by Marsha Wilson Chall.–This one is a gift from my in-laws and the story feels a lot like being up north at their cabin. Thankfully, we have a 2014 trip planned so the girls can fish with Grandpa and Nana and maybe even sleep on the screen porch. We may even see some bald eagles as they had a nest around the cabin the last time we were there. Perfectly reminiscent of an up north summer.

Fox in Socks by Dr. Seuss. Possibly the worst Dr. Suess book. It rivals Green Eggs and Ham.  I find reading it exhausting and actually shoved this one off on Big Daddy because I hate reading it so very much.

Grumpy Cat by Britta Teckentrup  Baby Bee can not get enough of this book and if she catches someone else reading it she gets super put out because this book is HERS.  It’s about a cat, who was a little grumpy but mostly lonely, who is befriended by a little a kitten and therefore stops being lonely.  Baby Bee wants to read this book about twenty times a day.

 Minnie’s Big Bow Party Bought in a weak moment when Baby Bee asked nicely.

Pet Fairies to the Rescue by Daisy Meadows.  Cute, quick level 2 chapter book.  Littlebit was more interested than Baby Bee.

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