Thursday, January 31, 2013

This May Be My Best Year Yet!

Ok so I have to acknowledge how well I did on the Newbery Award pick! (Not so great on the Caldecott, I know). The two books I highlighted for the Newbery actually won! The One and Only Ivan took the award, but Three Times Lucky came in as an honor book! So excited. I'll give you a full review after we finish it - a few chapters left.
Here's a link to the official announcements if you haven't seen:

Let's talk about 2 other awards though:

The Laura Ingalls Wilder Award honors an author or illustrator whose books "have made a substantial and lasting contribution to literature for children". The 2013 winner is Katherine Paterson! Here's a favorite of mine from back in the day:

The Theodor Seuss Geisel Award for the most distinguished beginning reader book went to Up, Tall and High!” written and illustrated by Ethan Long.
Bad me! Have to order it! But looks great!

Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Winter Storytime, Week 2: Pancakes!

This week Ms. Eileen and I are giving a nod to National Blueberry Pancake Day which is January 28th,  National Pancake Day on February 5, and National Pancake Week which is February 19-25.  Who knew there were so many "official" pancake days of honor?!

Our books this week included the lovely, lyrical "Like Butter on Pancakes", by Jonathan London with illustrations by Brian Karas, as well as:
If You Give a Pig a Pancake, by Laura Numeroff, illustrated by Felicia Bond
Pancakes, Pancakes, by Eric Carle
Hey, Pancakes, by Tamson Weston and Stephen Gammell (a big hit with the 4 and 5s)
Tyler Makes Pancakes! by Tyler Florence and Craig Frazier
Marsupial Sue Presents "The Runaway Pancake", by John Lithgow, ill. by Jack E. Davis. This was very dramatic and featured a sly fox, a  sassy pancake, and a twist at the end.  The 4/5 year olds were able to hang with this story, but I think we'll pass on it with the younger kids. 

We started with a simple action rhyme:
Mix a pancake, stir a pancake
Plop it in the pan
Flip a pancake, Toss a pancake
Catch it if you can!

And then I presented "Flip Flap Jack", a fun and funny flannel board story to much delight.  This is a variation on Aiken Drum and goes like this:

There was a man made out of food, (out of food?) yes, out of food.  There was a man made out of food and his name was flip-flap jack.  (When saying his name the kids clap their hands flip-flap 3 times)
His body was a waffle (a waffle?!) yes, a waffle.  His body was a waffle and his name was flip-flap jack
Continue with a pancake as a face, banana arms, bacon legs, french toast feet, blueberry eyes, strawberry nose, orange ears, whipped cream hair, sausage mouth and lastly a raspberry bellybutton, complete with raspberry sound!  

Our craft was printing with circles accompanied by Lisa Loeb's "Disappointing Pancake", and Maria Muldaur's "Making Breakfast for the Ones We Love". 

Sunday, January 27, 2013

On the Eve of the Awards

Ok, so let me start by saying that I truly stink at predicting or selecting the awards for children's literature, most notably the Newbery & Caldecott. Many 'kidlit' people will say the same thing. Why? Maybe it's just too political or too subjective. Like the Oscars, it depends on when the book was released, what critical acclaim it gets beforehand, the selection committee, etc.
 Others will ask, "who cares?" Well, I kinda do. I mean, I have spent many announcement days waiting for someone to put the info up on the internet. But I have also had a year or two where I just plain forgot until I went into work the next day. This year, I have joined twitter, so I am thrilled to see who manages to tweet the info first. Does it mean these are the best children's books for the past year? Yes, and no. There have been many award books I haven't loved. And many books I have loved more. C'est la vie.
So there are alot of titles that have award 'buzz' ~ some I have read, others I haven't, and some I haven't even ordered. Yes, there are always a few titles, honor books or occasionally an award winner that I just didn't think looked good for our collection, or overlooked.
So here are a few picks of mine, that likely won't win for the simple reason that I selected them. Why did I choose these? Because they spoke to me. Not you, me.  Because they were ones I ordered and liked. They were ones I had time to read.

 Three Times Lucky by Sheila Turnage
My daughter and I are currently reading this one together and loving it. Of course, I am a fan of the quirky, so it's right up my alley.

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
 Possibly the most talked about title, and from a seasoned writer. It's been called extraordinary and heartbreaking.

Other Contenders:
Seraphina by Hartman
Wonder by Palacio
Starry River of the Sky by Lin
Splendors & Glooms by Schlitz
Bomb by Sheinkin
Liar & Spy by Stead


and then it's spring by Fogliano and Stead
truly beautiful artwork - but she won for another fave, A Sick Day for Amos McGee...?

A Home for bird by Stead
Ms Patty and I both adore this book. It has great illustrations and the story to back it up. Likely won't win!

Other Contenders:
More by Springman and Lies
Green by Seeger
Extra Yarn by Barnett
Baby Bear Sees Blue by Wolff
Oh, No! by Fleming and Rohmann

Friday, January 25, 2013

Our First Funny Friday!

Ok, so you may know that Ms Patty and I both can have weird senses? of humor? Not sure how to pluralize that. Anyway, we're starting "Funny Fridays" here on the blog, where we can share the things we always share with each other! You have to check out this link- especially if you know children's books. Really, hysterical.

Thursday, January 24, 2013

New Drop-In Storytime

In February, Thursday mornings will be for drop-in storytimes for children ages 2-5 (parents/caregivers will need to stay with the youngest).   At 10:30 a.m. with Ms. Patty, come once or every week for stories, songs, and a craft.  

And don't forget our regular scheduled storytimes:
Twos on Friday mornings at
Three and four year-olds on Wednesday or Thursday at 1:00 pm
Four, five and six year-olds on Tuesday at 10:00 or Friday at 1:00

Tuesday, January 22, 2013

Storytime Begins!

Our Winter Storytimes have begun with Ms. Eileen hosting a large group of 4 and 5 year olds this morning, reading books about snow and snow friends and making adorable snow people to take home.  She'll have another group on Friday and in the meantime my 2s, 3s, and 4s will be making easy bird feeders to help out our feathered friends during these cold months and we'll read some books about Silly Birds including perpetual storytime favorite, Minerva Louise.  This theme also gives me a chance to break out Jack and Jill, the two little blackbirds.  Several years ago I modified the typical Jack and Jill finger play to great a storytime staple.  In case you are wondering, here are the words:

Two little blackbirds sitting on a hill
One named Jack and one named Jill
Fly away Jack, Fly away Jill,
Come back Jack, Come back Jill.

Two little blackbirds sitting on a cloud (Quiet and Loud)
Two little blackbirds sitting on a toe (High and Low)
Two little blackbirds sitting on another toe (Fast and Slow)
Two little blackbirds sitting on a gate (Early and Late)

Two little blackbirds very good friends,
Even though they are very different
And that's how this ends.

Saturday, January 19, 2013


Ms Patty created this blog a few years ago to keep parents informed about storytime here at RML and to share what we were doing for topics, crafts, etc. I made a few appearances, we neglected it, we downright ignored it when it wasn't storytime-time even! 
So, in short, we decided to revamp the children's part of the website, and use this blog instead to relay all sorts of cool stuff that relates to anything and everything to do! Soon, you will be able to head to the RML website at and just click on the link to take you here for all the info, ideas, commentary, etc. Or you can just come here or get the feed.
So let's start with something fun, on this weekend before the start of our Winter/Spring Storytime Session I!
I have always loved Snowballs by Lois Ehlert.

 It's simple, and the kids LOVE it. So, in honor of Snowballs, send me a pic of your kiddos creating their snowperson or the finished product. Here are my girls and their latest creation:

You can send your pic to me at

Here are some pics from Ms Patty of her kids when they were younger and their creations:
The one above was taken 19 years ago of her son Max and his first snow friend! Below is Max and sister Anna, hard at work.

Monday, January 14, 2013

Changes to RML Website

Hi everyone!
There is a little construction going on around here (in virtual land that is) so don't be alarmed if things look different than usual! The program dates on this blog are correct
Thanks for your patience!