Open the Barn Door…

Yesterday, B & I went for an adventure out to the farm to try to catch a ride in the tractor with “Pop” (my Dad) who was busy planting corn. When we got out of the car, I noticed two big, cuddly looking orange cats loafing in the sun.

Quietly, we tip-toed around the car (they’re not tame.) As they were approached by a friendly tot with open arms (“Hi tat! Hi!”) the cats shuffled through the grass and escaped right under the barn door. Rats! (Or, more appropriately, “Cats!”)

love taking B to the farm now that she’s a little older. There are so many things to see!barn doorThe farm in this board book has lots of animals for your little one to discover– a cow, a pig, a little chick, a pony, yellow ducklings, a goat (chewing on the laundry!), a happy dog, cats, a rooster, and an owl. Behind each flap, littles will find animals after hearing what they say– maybe it’s “mew-mew” or “cock-a-doodle-doo.”

Open the Barn Door… has long been a fave of B’s. How could it not be? With hiding animals under liftable flaps, soft, pretty colors, and lots of animal noises, I’ll bet the little ones in your life would love it, too.

Open the Barn Door…
Text Penguin Random House/Illus. Christopher Santoro
Random House

Hello, World! Backyard Bugs

When was the last time you went on a bug quest?

A few days ago, while out in the yard with Sunny during B’s nap, I found a ladybug. A pretty little red ladybug. I haven’t even thought about looking for/capturing anything other than a lightning bug for years. I scurried inside while carrying the crawling critter on my hand. While keeping an eye on it (so it didn’t turn into a fugitive,) I rummaged through the cupboard and created B’s first bug jar.

ZAP! Oh, the childhood memories. I was so excited to show her when she woke up from her nap!

What did she think? *crickets* However, she thought the jar was really cool. She’s a little young (I guess) to fully feel the thrill of trapping a live bug. With the flick of B’s wrist, Mrs. Ladybug was free.

I wouldn’t have even thought of looking for bugs if it wasn’t for Hello, World! Backyard Bugs.bugs

This bright, beautiful, and engaging book was written & illustrated by a woman who’s favorite color is rainbow. Just look at the cover. Don’t you instantly believe her claim? Every color is used, and somehow, the colors make you want to go outside and explore.

In this board book, your little one will learn quick facts about bees, dragonflies, spiders, grasshoppers, crickets, ladybugs, ants, worms, and caterpillars that turn into butterflies! Your kiddo can practice wiggling like a worm (like they need practice,) tracing lines where dragonflies fly, and pointing out familiar objects they’ll find on each spread.

Did you know a cricket chirps by rubbing its wings together? Trust me– this book is just as much for you as it is for your little one. We can’t wait to get our hands on the others in the series!

Hello, World! Backyard Bugs
Jill McDonald
Doubleday

Llama Llama Easter Egg

Spring has sprung! Our tulip tree is sooo close to exploding with beautiful, purple buds. Somehow, our bleeding hearts survived an attack of Round-Up last year and are blooming. Daffodils, narcissus, and tulips are each full of happiness.

B loves the late Anna Dewdney’s llama books, especially Llama Llama Easter Egg. Hearing our sweetie try to say “llama llama” is priceless, baby book, iPhone video gold.
llama (2)Llama wakes up on Easter morning in his red pajamas, naturally, and your little one gets to join him on his day with chocolate, candies, an Easter egg hunt with lots of colored eggs in pastels– there are even some that look like they’ve been left in the dye for minutes. The rhyming text and spot-on llama facial expressions are a joy to experience, and at the end of the book, you & your kiddo will discover a nice little Easter-y surprise.

Llama Llama Easter Egg
Anna Dewdney
Viking/Penguin Young Readers Group

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom

Every week, the hunt is on for B’s favorite books, or her current “Book of the Week.” She has had a lot of them over her past (almost) 2 years, and sometimes, old favorites come back out to the living room floor. One of her faves (and mine) is a book that I remember so vividly from the library at my elementary school. 20+ years later, I could still probably tell you exactly where it was shelved.

“Mom! Itch itch boom boom!” Thankfully, she wasn’t talking about an itchy owie, but her book that has pizzazz.boomThis board book ended up being the perfect addition to B’s Easter basket last year, when she was only 9ish months old. She loved it then as much as she loves it now.

The rebellious letter a and his lowercase gang (the rest of the alphabet), get a kick out of climbing the coconut tree, and once they’re all up there, their immense weight tips the tree over! As quick as a page turn, they all go boom into a jumbled, colorful pile. Injured, they all need to be helped by their uppercase family members.

The way the illustrator (Lois Ehlert), created this lively, brightly colored world for the alphabet to rule is brilliant, and the rhythm the authors came up with (kind of a “sing-chant”) is sure to keep your kiddo’s attention over and over again.

Chicka Chicka Boom Boom
Bill Martin, Jr., John Archambault/Illus. Lois Ehlert
Little Simon

Meet Sunny!

SunnyShe loves to “go” outside (phew!)

She loves to scamper to a small opening in our fence and stick her head through.

B was bummed that the kennel wasn’t for her.

She loves to play tug-of-war with her rope/ball thing. B loves getting her going!

She wakes up several times a night.

She likes tennis balls– and B likes to take them away from her.

Her ears dip into her water when she gets a drink.

I recently purchased a Swiffer Wet Jet.

She likes socks (the ones on our feet.)

She loves mud (it’s been raining and cloudy for what seems like weeks!)

My new Wet Jet gets delivered today.

She’s afraid of getting a bath, the car, and, of course, she sleeps a lot— which B doesn’t care for. Normally, we’ll find her over by the kennel watching her pup sleep with adoring eyes.