Meanwhile, the twins and I re-enjoyed (for the third time) The Giant Jumperee by Julia Donaldson. Cute, cute, cute. And Donaldson gave us some great discussion about when your fears are just in your head instead of based on reality. Here's Bee showing you her favorite page.
We satisfied Bruiser's need for machine books with Firefighter Duckies by Frank Dormer (which was charming and funny and needed to be read at an excited yell) and Little Excavator by Anna Dewdney. As Dewdney's work goes, Little Excavator was not one of my favorites. Sure, it rhymes and it scans, but mostly it just fit the bill for a book about something with a motor and wheels, which is about as discerning as three year old boys get. Sad truths. I didn't find it to have any of the humor and sweetness of the Llama Llama books, but maybe that was just me. Bruiser loved it.
For the inquiring minds that need to know, Twinkle enjoyed any and all books presented to her. This isn't saying much as she tends to happiness, not discernment. I'll give her a grace period.
The Bigs have been obsessed with Nathan Hale's Hazardous Tales by Nathan Hale (the author, not the spy, but based on the spy, not the author--which I thoroughly enjoyed). True confession: I haven't read all of them but I have skimmed through parts. I did also do my research. History in comic form with a good dose of humor and imagination thrown in.
I included both shots of Tiny reading Nathan Hale simply because I couldn't decide which was cuter: the cat in the background or the baby butt exiting the frame. So far the boys have plowed through One Dead Spy (set during the Revolutionary War), Big Bad Ironclad! (Civil War), Treaties, Trenches, Mud, and Blood (WW1), and Alamo All-Stars (which was what got them sucked into the series initially). If nothing else, I love that these books are giving us a chance to talk about history. The illustrations help my boys envision the past more fully. We had a rousing discussion of about war tactics (trench warfare, guerrilla warfare, attacking head on, etc) which about used up all my military knowledge. From now on, I'll be fielding all questions to the Man.
Meanwhile, I plowed through two different trilogies. The first was Orson Scott Card's Pathfinder series. If you like your sci-fi with a heavy dose of physics, philosophy and time travel theory, these will be a good fit for you. Personally, I find all of the above to be quite fun, and I like it when a good novel (or three) makes my mind work as well as entertaining me. I also didn't mind thinking through the evolutionary framework Card insisted on providing. It's always good to consider why I believe what I believe and then go from there.
Lastly, I've been relishing Shauna Niequist's Present Over Perfect. It's been on my To Read list for quite some time, and it's been worth the wait. It showed up at the library at the perfect time, enabling me to think through how I really want my days spent and who I want to be. Months ago I had a friend tell me that as she passed her 35th birthday she thought to herself, "Is this who I want to be at forty?" and adjusted accordingly. This book goes hand in hand with that idea in my mind. It's helping me to slow my mind and heart even as my hands are busy caring for the precious ones entrusted to me.
Anyway, now that you've enjoyed the myriad pictures of my myriad cute kids, go forth and stock your book list! And know that I will never lead you astray, even if Bruiser valiantly continues to brainwash me into accepting machine books as classic lit.