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What I’m Reading (and the Kids too)

December is here. Chilly temps have really settled in, and books are becoming my most favorite thing – especially by the light of the Christmas tree. Admittedly, those non-fiction books are a little harder to pick up and dig into (it’s much easier to get lost in another world where I don’t have to focus on anything), but I am making progress.

The one thing I really need to focus on this month is decidedly making time to read for my growth – not just for fun. The last few weeks have been crazy with family visiting and traveling, so focusing on a more serious topic has been harder to do. Hence – the fiction. :) I will also admit that the last little bit I have been sidetracked by the Hallmark channel (we subscribed to Sling TV for the month so we could get all the holiday movies!!), and that may have put a damper on my reading.

My GoodReads app is helping me track the books that I’m reading. Only two books on my original reading list for 2017 remain, and one of them is already halfway finished. I’m definitely looking forward to our Christmas break and hoping to finish both of them prior to that so I can just relax and read all the FUN books that are still on my shelf.

To help me toward my goal of finishing those two books, I’m setting an alarm for every afternoon at 2pm so I can sit down and read for at least 15 minutes.  Here are the books on my pile to read this month: 


The Kids are Reading…


  • Laurianna – lots of assigned reading for her college classes
  • McKenna – Heart of Darkness
  • Zachary – Carry On, Mr. Bowditch
  • Kaleb – Boxcar Children book #3
  • Family read-aloud – Gregor the Overlander series

What I Finished in November

Here’s a peek at what I finished in the month of November – just fiction and working through some non-fiction too. 

 

  • Irish Meadows by Susan Anne Mason
  • Until the Dawn by Elizabeth Camden – HIGHLY RECOMMEND!!!
  • five books in the Jacobite chronicles by Julia Brannon (there were some parts I had to skip). Otherwise a good series, but the parts I skipped seemed like they were token “add in” scenes that honestly could have been modified or left out completely. 

That’s it for this month – what is on YOUR reading list??

30 Activities, Crafts, and Printables for Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett

Books by Jan Brett have been huge favorites in our house, including her story Gingerbread Baby. The illustrations are simply amazing, and there are many activities that can be done to encourage learning as we read: sequencing, learning about different animals, and so much more!

Each of our children has enjoyed Gingerbread Baby – whether a board books, a paperpack, or hardcover. Like many of our books from Jan Brett, this is one that has earned a permanent spot on our shelves for years to come. There are some books that are just timeless!

Here is a collection of ideas and printables that you can use with your kids or classroom when reading Gingerbread Baby by Jan Brett.

Activities to Go-Along

Gingerbread Crafts


Science Tie-ins

Printables

Read the Story Online

If you don’t have a copy of Gingerbread Baby at home, or if you’d like to do something a little different, read it online here.

 

Additional Literature Based Learning Ideas

Like this? Don’t miss these other literature based activity posts focused on some of our favorite children’s books. 

activities, crafts, and printables to go along with The Snowy Day

Over 30 go-along crafts, activities, and printables for The Polar Express

What I’m Reading (and the Kids too) November 2017

November is here and along with it comes some busy night and company. On the other hand, the weather has also cooled down considerably, making Sunday afternoons a wonderful time to snuggle under a blanket and get lost in a book! 

My GoodReads app has been very handy in helping me track the books that I’m reading. Although I didn’t get much of one of the remaining books on my original reading list for 2017 read, I did finish one in my “extras” pile and a total of eight books overall. These last two months are dedicated to finishing the final two books in my “must read” list. 

Most afternoons I have a chance to sit down for about 15 minutes, but honestly I’ve been not focusing as much on reading as just relaxing and resting (I’m not going to get upset over that). Here are the books I’d like to focus on in November (and inevitably there will be books that manage to sneak their way onto my pile!): 

  • Abba’s Child by Brendan Manning
  • When God Seems Far Away by Joy Jacobs
  • Loving Our Kids on Purpose (re-reading this one)
  • Awaken (devotional) by Priscilla Shirer
  • Cherish by Gary Thomas (still working through this) 
  • random Kindle books (bedtime reading)

The Kids are Reading…


  • Laurianna – lots of assigned reading for her college classes
  • McKenna – finishing Count of Monte Cristo and starting Heart of Darkness
  • Zachary – finishing Treasure Island and starting Carry On, Mr. Bowditch
  • Kaleb – Boxcar Children book
  • Family read-aloud – Gregor the Overlander series

What I Finished in October

Here’s a peek at what I finished in the month of October. 

  • Moral Revolution by Kris & Jason Vallotton (our youth group is working through the video series based on this book)
  • Siblings without Rivalry by Adele Faber 
  • An Inconvenient Beauty by Kristi Ann Hunter
  • random Kindle books (bedtime reading), including Marrying Miss Marshal, To Win Her Favor, A Dangerous Engagement, A New Day Rising, and An Untamed Heart

That’s it for this month – what is on YOUR reading list??

Book Report Forms – Free Printable

Last week I shared a set of Scientific Method Printables with you all (a fun flipbook and poster). While this set of book report form printables is rather opposite of science, the clip art involved ties in with the Zoey and Sassafras series – but can be used for any book report your child may work on. (We just liked the clip art and thought it would be fun to make something else!)

These forms have been great for our children over the years (especially those who are more hesitant writers) because they have a limited space and clear direction. 

The set includes three forms that all include the following: 

  • space to record book information (title, author, copyright, etc)
  • story setting
  • characters
  • a brief summary
  • two vocabulary words
  • a book rating

The summary area is varies a bit on each form

. One page is blank so your child can write freely. If you have a child that needs a little assistance in keeping lines straight (or maybe writing a bit smaller), print off one of the lined pages. 

For those beginning the book report journey, this is a great look at important information to gather while reading and a fun way to document reading progress through the year. 

Enjoy!

October Reading List (for Mom and Kids)

Hello, October!! This is about the point in the year when I go back to my original reading list to see how I’m keeping up with what my goals for the year were. Overall, I’m doing great – only one book remains on my “must read” list, but several have managed to sneak there way into my pile over the year as well. 

Each afternoon I have been trying to set aside at least 15 minutes to read. It doesn’t always happen, but it is a quiet time goal when the day has a bit of a lull (or needs one). With fall weather now turning cooler here, that encourages me to curl up with a cup of tea and enjoy a few moments of reading. 

Here’s the list I want to tackle during October. Yes, there are a few that have been carrying over from month to month, but I keep finding additional books I want to read that weren’t originally on my list! 


  • Moral Revolution by Kris & Jason Vallotton (our youth group is working through the video series based on this book)
  • Siblings without Rivalry by Adele Faber (been working on this for months)
  • Loving Our Kids on Purpose (re-reading this one)
  • An Inconvenient Beauty by Kristi Ann Hunter
  • Awaken (devotional) by Priscilla Shirer
  • Cherish by Gary Thomas
  • random Kindle books (bedtime reading)

The Kids are Reading…


  • Laurianna – a whole lot of her college texts :)
  • McKenna – Walden and Count of Monte Cristo
  • Zachary – Treasure Island
  • Kaleb – Boxcar Children book
  • Family read-aloud – Gregor the Overlander

What I Finished in September

Here’s a peek at what I finished in the month of September. The last few days I really tried to  buckle down and complete one of the non-fiction books. 

I have to say, both Finish and Come and Eat were two of my favorites so far this year. Finish is written in Acuff’s typical style – a lot of tongue-in-cheek humor and really something I needed to read in this moment because it focused a lot on how we set unrealistic/unattainable goals for ourselves and then don’t end up finishing things because our goals can’t be met, then drop the ball on that and more. For people who are perfectionists (hello, me), this ends up being a huge issue. Just read it! :) 

Another one to love – Come and Eat by Bri McKoy. Mixed in with her rich storytelling and humor, Bri challenges us to open our homes and tables to develop relationships with friends, strangers, and more. Rick and I have been in training to lead a small group, and one of the things I really wanted to add in was a meal with one family each time we meet – because so much happens around the table (food is a fabulous neutral ground). 



 

  • Finish by Jon Acuff
  • Come and Eat by Bri McKoy
  • Grave Matter by Anne Lee Huber (love this series!)
  • A Stranger at Fellsworth by Sarah Ladd
  • The Glittering Court by Richelle Mead
  • a few other random Kindle books that I forgot to track…

That’s it for this month – what is on YOUR reading list??

What I’m Reading (and the Kids too) September 2017

August slipped by without my sharing a reading post, but several of the books have carried over the last few months. Time to sit and read hasn’t been something I have prioritized (at least when it comes to books with a little more meat between the pages). 

Now that we are getting back into a school routine, we’ll be adding our daily quiet time and read aloud time back into our daily loop, as well as audiobooks. The hard thing with summer for us is we have been in so many different directions with swim team, the pool, Laurianna working, and other things happening. I’d honestly rather be at home, so I’m looking forward to the fall and relaxing a bit more in that aspect. 

Here’s the list I want to tackle during September, especially since several have been in my pile for a bit (that may be bothering me a bit!!): 



  • Siblings without Rivalry by Adele Faber (been working on this for months)
  • Come and Eat by Bri McKoy
  • All the Pretty Things by Edie Wadsworth (I’ve read one chapter!!)
  • Awaken (devotional) by Priscilla Shirer
  • Cherish by Gary Thomas
  • Grave Matter by Anne Lee Huber (love this series!)
  • random Kindle books (bedtime reading)

 

The Kids are Reading…


  • Laurianna – a whole lot of her college texts :)
  • McKenna – Robinson Crusoe
  • Zachary – Treasure Island
  • Kaleb – Zoey and Sassafras series
  • Family read-aloud – Ember Falls by S.D. Smith (with boys)

What I Finished in July and August

Reading has been a bit slow over the last bit – at least during the day, but here’s the 

  • Crazy Love by Francis Chan
  • The Elusive Miss Ellison by Carolyn Miller
  • The Captivating Lady Charlotte by Carolyn Miller
  • An Uncommon Courtship by Kristi Ann Hunter
  • Safe Haven by Nicholas Sparks
  • a few other random Kindle books that I forgot to track…

That’s it for this month – what is on YOUR reading list??