Lately we have had to stay inside so much more than usual. In addition to focused time on homeschooling subjects like math, phonics and geography we do all kinds of fun activities and projects, only now it’s all inside our apartment!
We were fortunate to receive a few Kiwi crates from a friend a few weeks ago. We excitedly opened the first one and with maiki’s help Emma constructed a zoetrope. The box included illustrated strips to put in the spinning zoetrope to watch the simple animations. Also included were blank strips that Emma can draw on and a flip book as well. We have two more Kiwi crates and are eager to discover the fun inside.
In the last real session of our knitting class at the library it was decided to cast off Emma’s knitted project so she could play with it. It has become a cape for Elsa. Turns out it is a perfect fit for a snow queen with its flecks of silver thread. Pretend play is a constant in our home.
After a trip to FLAX we came back with new clay, drawing paper, a few choice brighly colored pencils and this kit to create your own miniature library. So much creativity pours forth after trips to art stores. 🙂
As always we are playing lots of games like mancala, checkers, Uno, Set, Connect 4, Dragoon and Brain Quest. Games are fun and great learning tools. Also jigsaw puzzles are perfect for times like this. Emma loves a particular Christmas puzzle and wants to construct it again and again with one of us.
Our family read books all day and night. I checked out a bunch of Cynthia Rylant books from the library before it closed and we love every one. maiki and Emma have reading Greek Myths this school year and the Cynthia Rylant version is a great one. I love Emma’s illustrations of the characters.
We finally finished the Long Winter and were extremely relieved when spring arrived at the end of their story. I find I can relate to the parallels in our current situation but am only comfortable reading it when our own cupboards a little fuller. Here is another of Emma’s illustrations to celebrate that we also are joyful for spring and we do not have to experience forty below temps in Oakland.
I felt like I could have read even more books this year! Still loving that I check out library books and have them sent to my Kindle!
Here is my 2018 book list:
Me Before You The Light of Paris The Readers of Broken Wheel Recomend The Lake House The Women in the Castle The Storied Life of A.J. Fikry The Cafe by the Sea The Pilot’s Wife Distant Shores Wuthering Heights Water for Elephants My Name is Lucy Barton Olive Kittrege
I finished: Dinner: A Love Story and Worn Stories
Still reading: Autumn by Ali Smith
I reread: The Little Paris Bookshop
Also, do cookbooks count? Because I read a lot of those too.
This year I read some of the best books of my life and some of the fiction was based on truly amazing women. The year was a tough one for so many reasons, but good books make the world brighter for me. As I have mentioned before I love using the library to read books on my Kindle. It has been a great experience and I appreciate not having to purchase e-books.
We have been reading a lot more since school is out for the holiday and our activities are on hold. It has been nice to visit the library with more frequency and we have read so many great books lately. Usually I will find many new picture books and a few non-fiction and Emma will pick up a stack of the short character stories like Strawberry Shortcake and Peppa Pig and we will read through them all. Here are some of the holiday/winter titles that we have been enjoying at home and from the library.
At home we own many books by Jan Brett as we love her illustrations. “Gingerbread Baby” and “The Mitten” are favorites. I also picked up this tiny copy of the “12 Days of Christmas.” The way she uses borders around the main pictures in all of her books is so brilliant.
I recently ordered a copy of a book from the Noisy Village series that we did not yet have. I know there is a “Christmas in Noisy Village” but I had read that you could get the same story by getting the longer chapter book. We have not read the whole thing yet but skipped to the chapters in the middle where they celebrate Christmas and it is wonderful!
Emma is in love with the book about “The Dolls’ Christmas” by Tasha Tudor. I picked it up at the library knowing she would fancy it and I had no idea that it was a true-ish story! Such a sweet little read.
We were sad to be missing “The Nutcracker” this year (although the holiday concert was a fantastic event) but still read the story often. We own a copy but have to look at other versions whenever we find them because the illustrations are always so good.
Of course we also have “The Snowy Day” and LOVE the new animated version so much. Ezra Jack Keats’ story and style of illustration is so beautiful and the new animated one is up to par.
Thinking about reading the chapters in “Mary Poppins ” where they go downtown to the big department store to buy Christmas presents. We love the part when Maia the star comes in to get things for all of her siblings. Also the part about the gingerbread wrapped in paper with stars gets me every time. It is so memorable.