August 31, 2015

"We're Going on a Bear Hunt" retold by Michael Rosen

"We're Going on a Bear Hunt" retold by Michael Rosen and illustrated by Helen Oxenbury has been one of my favorite children's books for many years. I bought this book for my husband (at that time he was my boyfriend) eight years ago. We worked at a summer camp together. One of the camp fire songs we sang was "We're Going on a Bear Hunt." It was a fun song with sillyhand motions - a camp favorite among campers and staff. I gave this book to him as an anniversary gift.

Much to my delight Lucas has discovered this book. He loves the part where family tromps through the mud, swims through the river and tip toes up to the bear cave. Hand motions and voices are a must with this fun loving adventure book.

The author's use of repetition is catchy and engaging which encourages young readers to join in. I like how the author uses vivid descriptions -long wavy grass, a deep cold river, and thick oozy mud - to encourage the readers imagination.  The illustrations are beautiful. I like how Oxenbury switches back and forth from black and white drawings to color drawings.

We're Going on a Bear Hunt is a fantastic book for readers of all ages.

August 17, 2015

beach trip

Before I had kids packing for the beach was a piece of cake. My needs were simple..a compfy blanket, snacks, shade, a book and a butt-load of SPF 50+ sunscreen. Add a toddler and newborn to the mix and suddenly things got more complicated. I have a perpetual fear of forgetting to pack something important and or necessary for a family beach trip. I tend to over stress, over think..and I usually forget sunscreen.

To keep myself sane, and able to enjoy the day I knew that I had to get organized and implement a better system for getting everything ready for the day.

Here's what I came up with:

  • Pack and prepare the gear and lunches the day/evening before our trip. This cuts down on the"things-mamma-has-to-do" in the morning before we leave list. 
  • I will put everything on the dinning room table, or just outside of the front door. This way my husband can easily scoop up what is going and whisk it away to the car with little interference from our toddler. It makes things so much easier for him if all I have to do is say.."pack the car with these items on the table."
  • I love lists! I created a list of everything that needs to be packed/prepared for our day trip. Having a physical list where I can check off items that have been packed, prepared and put in the car helps me keep on top of everything. And I know that if I need too I can hand over my list to my husband and he can continue where I left off. 
By using this system our summer beach trips have been less intimidating. It's great to know that I've got everything covered and I can relax and enjoy the day. 

August 6, 2015

Alara at two months

Our baby girl is growing! Here are some highlights about her second month of life. 
  • She's all smiles! I'm loving her gummy morning grins. It's the best way to start the day. 
  • She is staying awake longer during the day. I wish that this meant that she was sleeping longer at night...but it's a step in the right direction. At the beginning of the month, she was sleeping most of the night. Unfortunately she has given up on that schedule and is back to her usual sleeping pattern (10 pm bed time, waking up around 4 am, then waking up again at 6 am). 
  • For her morning naps, I've started putting her to sleep in the crib. This transition has been met with much distress and fussing on her part. She still prefers to sleep in the bouncy chair or in our bed. 
  • She wears size one diapers. 
  • She has completely outgrown all of her newborn clothing. 
  • She's a mamma's girl! When my husband (or anyone else) is holding her, Alara will keep a close eye on me. If I leave the room she starts fussing. Often while holding Alara, my husband will just follow me around the house. 
  • Her farts rival husband's. 
  • Bathtime is one of her favorite times of the day. She loves making a splash by kicking her legs and waving her arms. 
  • She has found her fingers and often will stick three or four in her mouth at the same time.