Reading With Ian

POD_Sept.25_H.is.for.HatsI saw a great quote yesterday in the hallway at Ian’s school — “You’re never too old, too wacky, too wild, to pick up a book and read to a child.” — Dr. Seuss

That is so true!   I love to read to Ian and now with him.  He is a great reader and loves his books. That makes me really and truly happy!

Ever since he was a toddler and earlier, he has loved reading.  He liked looking at the pictures and hearing us read to him.

I loved having him sit on my lap as we read a story together.  Then as he got older and learned to read, I loved having him cover my mouth and read a page to me.  What special and terrific memories.

Some of our favorite books that make us laugh are by Dr. Seuss.  We love the rhyming, the funny and made-up animals and words, the stories, the messages and morals being taught, and the great pictures as well.

Dr. Seuss had a great respect for children and enjoyed entertaining them.  He taught great life lessons through his stories.  I thank him for hours and hours of entertainment.  And, hope to one day write a children’s book that is half as much fun.  I will certainly do my best.

When Ian was still quite young, we signed up for Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library.  Each month from birth to age 5, children receive books at no cost to the family.  We still have all of these books, which are age appropriate.  This amazing gift was treasured by our family.  We were sad when he turned 5 years old and received his last book.

Now, we go to the city library each month or more frequently. We have continued the enjoyment of new books and stories on a regular basis.  We are so very blessed and thankful that Ian is such a great reader and truly loves books. That is a wonderful blessing.

Today I am thankful for:

  • Cuddling with Ian as we read a book
  • A boy who was worried he couldn’t learn to read but stuck with it
  • The monthly gift of reading during his preschool years
  • Listening to Ian read each evening
  • A son who truly loves books

I wonder what book or books we will read tonight before bed?  I cannot wait to find out.  That is one of the best parts of my day!

Throwback Thursday – Reading

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Hi and Happy Thursday!  For today’s Throwback Thursday, I wanted to post a photo of Ian reading a book.  Well, at the age he is in this picture, he was looking at it or doing pre-reading.

He has always loved books and still does.  His 1st grade class at school is working on 20 hours of reading in honor of Dr. Seuss’s birthday.  Each hour that Ian reads means he can color in The Cat in The Hat’s Hat on a piece of paper.  So, we are on our way!

I remember when he was first learning to read that he was nervous that he’d never get it.  He worked hard and consistently and now LOVES reading.  In fact, his favorite place to go is our city’s public library.  How great is that?

We read to him when he was a baby, toddler, preschooler, and then he learned to read. We still read to him but enjoy the fact that he can read to us.  One of my favorite things to do is sit with him and listen to him read a book.

I am so very thankful that he enjoys reading as much as I do.  Books have always been part of his life and our home.  My prayer is that all children can learn to read and learn to love it.  I also hope that all adults can read as well.   Literacy is so very important!

I wonder what he will next be reading?  I cannot wait to find out!!!

Water and Poetry

SANYO DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Wednesday!  I recently joined a poetry prompt via the Word Press site.  They give styles and subjects to write about.  One day our writing was to be on Water as the subject.  I didn’t write it then but decided to today.

Here are some thoughts on water and a poem as well.  One of my favorite writers who was quite good at rhyming was Dr. Seuss.  I love that Ian likes him as much as I do.  Very cool!  We are celebrating him this month at school.

cropped-cropped-boy-at-beach.jpgWater is something that I love and cannot live without.  I drink a lot of it each day with ice.  Cold water keeps me going and is satisfying.  I love having running water that I can drink in my house.  I truly feel spoiled to be able to do that.

Also the water that becomes hot for dishes, showers, laundry, and baths is wonderful.  This too is an amazing gift and very special to have. I have learned not to take it for granted and feel quite blessed to have it.

I also love salt water — in the sea and ocean, tears, and sweat.  These are three powerful types of salt water.  I love the ocean and its beauty.  I feel calmed when at the beach and love it. I love to watch the ebb and flow of the waves.

Sweat is great since it shows up when you are working hard at exercise and working on staying fit.  It feels good to break a sweat and I am trying to do more of those.  Tears for me sometimes flow very easily — both from happiness and sadness.  Sometimes a quick cry can help things get better.

This past week we also saw the destruction of water and problems when it goes where it shouldn’t.  Thankfully there wasn’t that much of that!

Water…

  • Water quenches a thirst like nothing else
  • Relief from heat is given
  • Nothing like the ice-cold taste on your tongue
  • To relieve you when overly driven
  • It flows in the shower and washes all cares away
  • It feels great on your feet at the beach
  • Water is great both fresh and salty
  • And something never far from our reach
  • Water drips from the roof
  • Pooling below on the ground
  • Inches upon inches pile up
  • And lead to mud all around
  • After the snow and ice, the water was everywhere
  • I wondered if there would be a flood
  • Thankfully it started to recede away
  • And that was very good

Not my best poem but a try nonetheless.  What are your thoughts on water?

10 things I love

GEDSC DIGITAL CAMERAI often think of people when I say the word love, but there are some things and activities that I love to do and participate in.  And, some things that I am privileged to have.

Here is a list of 10 of them.  I will be writing another list again soon.

  1. To laugh.  I have loved laughing for as long as I can remember.  I love to hear Kirk and Ian laugh as well.  Funny TV shows or a funny movie can make me laugh.  Also, jokes and stories from family and friends make me laugh. Earlier today we watched the movie, “Mom’s Night Out.”  It was silly, funny, and I truly enjoyed it.  When I was younger, my sister, two dear friends, and I created a club in which we loved to laugh and often did.  We knew the importance of being silly and for that, I am forever grateful.
  2. Having a garage on a cold and snowy day, or on a day when it’s pouring rain.  I have lived a few places with no garage but instead a parking space. That is fine on a sunny day, but when it’s 8 degrees outside, it is so nice to not have to wait for 5 minutes while the car warms up.  Earlier this week, we enjoyed the benefit of our garage. Our garage truly makes me feel spoiled.
  3. Cub Scouts and sharing that with Ian.  I have several family members who have been in scouting for a while so I was aware of it.  However, being involved has been more than I could have imagined.  Ian has learned a lot, has grown and blossomed, and made some great friends.  The first year the parents are required to be involved and I have really enjoyed it too.  Soon, we will be doing the Pinewood Derby Race.  That will also be lots of fun. The photo is a scouting outing to the bowling alley.
  4. Stories.  I can’t imagine my life without words and stories. I grew up listening to stories created by my grandfather and absolutely loved them.  He was an amazing influence on my love of stories.  He was also a great writer who I have learned a lot from.  I think my writing is similar to his and that makes me smile.  Ian is quite good at making stories up as well.  That makes me super happy.
  5. Writing. This is something else that I cannot imagine not having the opportunity to do.  As I mentioned when I started this blog, I didn’t write at all for about a year after Ian was born.  Then one day, I realized that something was missing.  So I starting writing again and that helped.  My outlet of getting my thoughts and feelings out there was again in business!  I have worked as a writer and now really enjoy blogging and doing other writing.  And, I am working on ideas for a few books.  It is one of my dreams to have a book or two published.
  6. Reading. My life has been so enriched by the love of books and reading.  I also like magazines and newspapers as well.  I am thrilled that Ian too loves to read.  We started him out very young and are so happy that we did.  Now seeing him read and listening to a special story is a great way to spend some special time.  Some of my favorite books as a child were “The Little House on the Prairie” series, “The Secret Garden,” and almost anything by Dr. Seuss.
  7. Watching TV – both current shows and classics.  I am a TV girl for sure.  I like a variety of shows and always watch the news in the morning and evenings.  I am one who follows a few shows very faithfully.  Some of my favorites are “The Good Wife,”  “Madam Secretary,” “Downton Abbey,” “Chicago Fire,” “Magnum, P.I.,” “Diagnosis Murder,” “Murder She Wrote,” “Hot In Cleveland,” “Hart to Hart,” “Scorpion,” and “Mike and Molly.”  I like a wide variety and enjoy tuning in.
  8. Soap Operas and magazine.  Okay, I will admit that along with reading and writing and liking PBS shows, I also like my soaps.  I have been watching “Days Of Our Lives” for years.  This show will celebrate 50 years of being on the air soon and that is cool.  Generations can watch the never-ending saga and drama.  It may be repetitive at times but I still like it.  And, 20 years ago, Mom and I got to visit the studio, so that was a lot of fun.  Now there are four daytime soaps left. I keep up with them in the Soap Opera Digest.
  9. Photography and photo gifts. I love pictures and enjoy capturing special moments. My sister has made me several fabulous photo books — one of the first year of Ian’s life and then from our special vacation spot.  My mother has made several great calendars — the most recent of our childhood home.   I always have my camera at family gatherings and also try to shoot nature and other things that interest me.  And, I love old photos of our family and friends.  It is so fun to look back at my grandparent’s honeymoon dessert photo, my sister and brother and I in our 70s or 80s finest, and a very old photo from childhood of us sitting on Grandpa’s lap for a special story.
  10. Singing and dancing.  Music has always been in my life and I love that.  I love to sing and dance.  Whether it’s the radio, singing hymns at church, or the choir, I love singing.  This season of “American Idol” has some good talent.  I haven’t watched this in a while but have enjoyed the first few audition shows.  For dancing, I like the 80s and 90s dance music the best — “Vogue,” “The Electric Slide,” and “Push It” are some of my faves.  I also like a few by Earth, Wind and Fire, Stevie Wonder, En Vogue, C&C Music Factory, Janet Jackson, and the list goes on.

Some of my listing may seem trivial or silly.  However, I have learned in life to find things that I am happy with and that I like.  And, I love what I love.  I hope that you do as well.  After all, we all have our favorites.  Some are sports fanatics, others like the soaps, some like reality shows, and others like talk radio.

What is on your list?  I would love to hear about some of the things that you love!  Please share them with me and our readers.

One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHi and Happy Wednesday!  Hope you are having a great one so far.  This photo is of a younger Ian reading a book.  He still likes books as much now as he did then.  Now he really likes Lego books, books from the library, his items from the Imagination Library, and several wonderful books by Dr. Seuss.

Last night before he went to bed, we read One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish. Thus the title for my blog today.  “Mommy, did you know that this book was written by a man named Theodor?” he asked me.  “Yes, Ian, you are exactly right.  His real name is Thedor Seuss Geisel,” I responded.

Then we took turns reading the pages.  As I turned each page, he put his hand over my mouth so he could read.  This made me so happy since he so much wanted to help read the story out loud,  He did a great job too!  He knew almost all of the words and sounded out those he didn’t.

Here are a few of the pages that he read,

  • “Yes, some are red.  And some are blue.  Some are old and some are new.  Some are sad.  And some are glad.”
  • “We see them come.  We see them go.  Some are fast. And some are slow.”
  • “Bump! Bump! Bump! Did you ever ride a Wump? We have a Wump with just one hump.”
  • “Hello there, Ned. How do you do? Tell me, tell me what is new? How are things in your little bed? What is new? Please tell me, Ned.”
  • “The moon was out and we saw some sheep.  We saw some sheep take a walk in their sleep.”
  • “Did you ever fly a kite in bed? Did you ever walk with ten cats on your head?”

Those are just part of what he read.  A few of the pages made him laugh (including that last bullet) and he commented several times on the rhyming words.  Reading the book this way took longer than normal, but was so worth it.

My favorite lines/pages of this book are, “From there to here, from here to there, funny things are everywhere” and “Oh me! Oh my! Oh me! Oh my! What a lot of funny things go by.”  I love the idea of encouraging kids to see the fun and funny things in life.  After all, there are certainly many of them.

I love so many of the Dr. Seuss books and think he is a genius in his writing.  His rhymes and made up characters are loved by me and by Ian.  They truly span the ages.  Isn’t that awesome?!  My dream would be to write like this amazingly gifted man did.  Some of our favorites are The Sleep Book, Horton Hatches The Egg, Horton Hears A Who, Fox in Socks, If I Ran The Zoo, and The Sneetches and Other Stories.

Thank you Dr. Seuss for writing such fun and engaging words for us to enjoy!  You truly had an amazing gift of drawing in young readers and keeping them interested!  He also taught children important lessons through the stories.  At Ian’s school, they recently studied him and he enjoyed that a lot.

I wonder what book we will read at bedtime tonight?  I also wonder what books Ian will read throughout the day?  I look forward to finding out and am thrilled that he loves reading as much as I do!!!!

September 4 – Alone

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAHello and Happy Wednesday!  Today’s photo is Alone.

I decided on a photo of Ian from 4 years ago.  He is taking his bath and having fun.  Then as now, after I wash him, he enjoys playing by himself with his bath toys.  I am always close by, but it’s fun to see him in action.

Last night for his bath, he played for a while with one of his pirate ships and several toys.  He had a great conversation going between his toys.  Ian has learned to have fun playing by himself.  He also, of course, likes to play with others too.  So we are blessed.

After his bath, we had dinner and then he played for a little while longer.  Then it was bedtime.  I read “Horton Hears A Who” to him.  This is a fun book about an elephant who hears someone tiny who lives in a village on a speck of dust.  Ian loved it and has liked all of the Dr. Seuss books that we have read.

Horton is alone in protecting the Who’s in Whoville.  Everyone in his town makes fun of him and says there aren’t any people because they are too small.  You know what Horton says, “A person’s a person, no matter how small.”  The Who’s appreciate Horton for his friendship and protection.

Dr. Seuss had a great message in this book of treating others kindly and with respect, no matter what.  He was great for that.  And, he made the books fun and great to read aloud.  He was a genius, in my opinion.

After we read this book, we talked about the fact that people come in all shapes, sizes, and colors.  And, all people, no matter how small or big have value and are important and can be our friends.  Ian seemed to get that, which makes me happy and proud of him.   I so loved this teaching moment!

The other Horton book that Ian loved is “Horton Hatches The Egg.” That also had a fun rhyming story yet was about doing what you say you will do and keeping your promises.  Again, genius by Dr. Seuss to teach children important values while they are having fun and being entertained.

I suppose I veered away from alone, but then again maybe not.  We alone are responsible for how we treat others.  These two books are helping my son to learn that.  I must say I am very grateful.

My dream is to write a children’s book one day.  I wonder if I could come anywhere close to the wonder of Dr. Seuss’s writings?  Maybe if I work on them with Kirk and Ian, we could.  It will be fun to see!

As I was going to bed last night a thought crossed my mind about the Who’s in Whoville.  In the book, their entire town is on a  speck of dust on top of a clover.   So they are tiny.   If that is true, was the Grinch a tiny person too?  After all, he did come into Whoville and cause all that trouble.  What do you think?  I would love to hear some thoughts on this!

We Love To Read

“To read is to fly: it is to soar to a a point of vantage which gives a view over wide terrains of history, human variety, shared experience and the fruits of many inquiries.” — A.C. Grayling

“The habit of reading is the only enjoyment in which there is no alloy; it lasts when all other pleasures fade.” — Anthony Trollope

“If you can read this, thank a teacher.” — Anonymous teacher

“The more you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.” — Dr. Seuss

“Children are made readers on the laps on their parents.” — Emile Buchwald

One of my favorite things to do is sit and read a good book. How about you?

A comfy chair or couch, or the beach, a good drink (depending on the temperature and weather, it could be a cold glass of water or hot cocoa), and a real book.  Ah bliss.  I like hard or soft bound books and ones with interesting art on the cover and a great story inside.  I still haven’t converted over the E-Books — at least not yet.

I enjoy being transported into another place and watching the characters deal with issues or learn something new about themselves. Some of my favorite authors are Carol Higgins Clark, Danielle Steel, David Baldacci, John Grisham, Wendy Corsi Staub, Jane Green, and Nora Roberts.  And, I have recently discovered Karen McQuestion and Jane Porter.

When I was younger, I loved Laura Ingalls Wilder’s “Little House on the Prairie” series as well as “The Chronicles of Narnia” by C.S. Lewis, and “The Secret Garden” by Frances Hodgson Burnett was another childhood favorite.

I also enjoy biographies of people such as Eleanor Roosevelt, Amy Grant, Julie Andrews, Susan Boyle, Ricky Martin, and Dean Martin as well as many, many other fascinating people.  And the story of Anne Frank is truly sad and moving. Finding out what makes people tick and their life history is truly fascinating to me.

I also enjoy reading my soap magazine to find out about the actors who tell the stories that I so enjoy.  And, it’s been fun that I have met a few of them through the years.  As you see, I have a wide variety of tastes.

And, now having a 4-year-old soon-to-be reader, I have enjoyed seeing his love for books!  He too enjoys pouring over a book and studying all about them.  And, once he hears a story read to him, he can then read it back to himself.

One of our favorites is Richard Scarry.  Ian can spend hours as I used to do looking at all of the animals on the page, the cool cars, and fascinating stories and characters.  And, he has recently discovered Dr. Seuss!  He loves “The Foot Book,” “The Sleep Book,” and “Yertle the Turtle” among many, many titles.  I think that these two are the best children’s authors.

Each month of his life, Ian has been getting a book as part of the Imagination Library.  God bless Dolly Parton for sharing the love of reading with so many people in Tennessee and other states!  Ian has looked forward to these books each month and we now have quite a collection.  His last book will be the month he turns 5 years old.  That will be sad but maybe Kirk and I can start our own collection for him.  Kirk too loves to read.

And, each month in the mail, Ian gets his High Five magazine which he really likes.  It is neat for him to be excited about a magazine and all of the great stories inside and funny things to look at!  Thanks to my parents for the subscription.

Each week we like to go to our city library.  Ian will often ask to go since he enjoys playing there with toys and puzzles, renting movies, as well as checking out a pile of books.  Right now we have three videos and 20 books checked out.  Among these are “Harry, the Dirty Dog,” “The Sneetches and other stories,” The Caboose Who Got Loose,” “Where the Wild Things Are,” and a few for me as well.

This summer our library will have its yearly reading program.   We signed up Ian a few years ago and read many, many books to him.  He loved it and the summer ended with a great party in the park behind the library.  A fun time, that’s for sure.

I have several friends who have published books.  It is an honor to know people who have been published since I know the hard work involved.  I hope to join this club one day!  In addition to my love of reading, I hope to be an author.  I really want to write a children’s book as well as a novel.  I am currently working on ideas and look forward to seeing what develops.

What books do you like?  What authors can you lose time with while being transported to another place and time?  Please share these with me and our other readers!