Saturday, September 23, 2017

Summer Fun with Munchkin

I will be posting sporadically about some of the fun adventures we are having together.

Again, I have not been the greatest about posting all the fun we have had this summer here on the blog.  I do post almost daily on my Instagram (mostly just books but also Munchkin posts).  The last time I posted was back in May with Springtime Fun so maybe I will start sticking to the seasonal posts.

Anyway while we didn't do a whole lot over the summer other than the usual BBQs and such, the last month has gotten a little crazy!  But lets start back in May . . 

At the end of May my parents game for a visit so Munchkin took Grandma and Grandpa to school for Show and Share.  He also helped Grandpa and Daddy install new windows in the basement.

We took a trip to the Providence Children's Museum and had lots of fun learning science and history.

We did some fishing and rescued a family of stranded kittens

Munchkin graduated from Pre-K

He got to meet Chase from Paw Patrol at the end of the Tball Season

 We went to some new playgrounds and went on a lot of walks while Daddy adjusted to his new schedule of going to bed early.

 We didn't get totality here but definitely had to watch the solar eclipse (we went to a planetarium to watch totality and then saw partial outside). While we were seeing the eclipse we were at the Mystic Seaport so got to see a lot of old ships too (even a viking ship).

He celebrated his 5th birthday with a PJ Masks party and the Tumblebus!

The next day an Aunt who came from out of state to celebrate with us took him to Mystic Aquarium where he saw Beluga Whales, Penguins, a Sea Turtle and Sharks!

He started Kindergarten too! (growing up so fast, and it was a little emotional for me)

He started soccer this month with Daddy as a coach.

We just came back from Orlando where we supported Hubby in the SuperTech Competition.

While Hubby was busy at the competition, I took Munchkin to the Orlando Science Center to see some dinosaur bones and a learned a bunch about science and weather too.

I then drove him across the state because we couldn't pass up a chance to check out the Kennedy Space Center, we even got to meet a real astronaut, Bob Springer! Munchkin touched a moon rock and saw the Atlantis Space Shuttle!

 And then finally we only had a few hours but we managed to visit Disney World, Magic Kingdom.  I don't really know how we did it but we managed to ride the Dumbo Flight, Winnie the Pooh, Ariel Under the Sea, the Carousel, met Donald, Goofy, Pluto and Mickey and watch the fall celebration in front of the castle!

Munchkin still has a couple more fun events coming up in the next couple of weeks but this mommy is worn out and will be taking a few days to enjoy bookish stuff on her own!!

Friday, September 22, 2017

Bedtime Story: Ted and Friends by Phil Roxbee Cox & Stephen Cartwright

Read for: Children's Book Challenge

Synopsis: "Created in consultation with a language expert, the stories have been especially written to help your child learn to read. The stories not only take into account recent research on the most effective ways of teaching reading, but are also great fun. There's also a listen-along CD that brings the stories to life through charming readings. This exciting edition contains twelve titles from the popular Phonics Readers series. Included titles: Fat Cat on a Mat. Ted in a Red Bed. Big Pig on a Dig. Hen's Pens. Fox on a Box. Frog on a Log. Ted's Shed. Sam Sheep Can't Sleep. Shark in the Park. Toad Makes a Road. Goose on the Loose. Mouse Moves House."

My Review: I have had this book sitting on the shelf for a while and finally pulled it out. I don't know why I waited so long to start reading it with Munchkin. This is a great collection of stories that really young kids will enjoy and then also those who are starting to read will be able to participate in reading. It is full of easy words and rhymes and it also has interactive features like hidden ducks and flip the flaps that will keep kids engaged. We read one or two stories a night and finished it quickly, and immediately Munchkin wanted to start reading it again. We have not used the audio CD yet but will next time we are in the car for a while.

My Rating: This was a great little book that kept Munchkin engaged in the story and was easy enough for him to sound out a lot of the words.  He loved the little hidden duck and lift the flap pages. This is a great combination to keep young and older kids reading. We definitely give this one a rating of Four Paws and a Stump Wag!

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

Review of Truthwitch by Susan Dennard

Read for: Recent Purchase & BTAF

Synopsis: "In a continent on the edge of war, two witches hold its fate in their hands.

Young witches Safiya and Iseult have a habit of finding trouble. After clashing with a powerful Guildmaster and his ruthless Bloodwitch bodyguard, the friends are forced to flee their home.

Safi must avoid capture at all costs as she's a rare Truthwitch, able to discern truth from lies. Many would kill for her magic, so Safi must keep it hidden - lest she be used in the struggle between empires. And Iseult's true powers are hidden even from herself.

In a chance encounter at Court, Safi meets Prince Merik and makes him a reluctant ally. However, his help may not slow down the Bloodwitch now hot on the girls' heels. All Safi and Iseult want is their freedom, but danger lies ahead. With war coming, treaties breaking and a magical contagion sweeping the land, the friends will have to fight emperors and mercenaries alike. For some will stop at nothing to get their hands on a Truthwitch."

My Review: I have heard great things about this book and series so figured I would pick it up. I tried to read it many times but kept putting it down. I did finally make it through on this last attempt but it was a long slow slog. A few of the issues were that the point of views changed with no break or notice throughout the book and the voice of Safi & Iseult were far to similar to define them. It took well into the book for me to figure out who had what power. On that subject it sounds like a unique and really awesome magic system but it is so poorly (read not at all) explained and so you spend a lot of time confused. It is also the same with the world building, there is a big lack of it, the settings are not clear nor are the political systems or people in power, what little there is comes late in the book and you really have to pick up on these details and put them together for yourself. There is a lot of action, which is great, but without the connection with the characters it falls rather flat. All in all a really disappointing read for me, I do already own the next book and I will probably pick it up in hopes that the writing improves but I will most likely stop there with this series.

My Rating: I can't tell you how disappointed I am in this book, I am an avid fantasy reader and while some things do need to be figured out on your own but there are far to many gaps in this one.  I give it a rating of One Paw and a Stump Wag.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Monday Reading List

Its Monday! What Are You Reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Shelia at Book Journey. Share what books you have finished in the last week, are currently reading and what might be coming up next!

Reviews Posted Last Week:
Links will take you to my review

Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee
Meet the Minions by Lucy Rosen (Early Reader)
This Book Will Not Be Fun by Cirroco Dunlap (Bedtime Story)
Saga Vol. 7 by Brian K. Vaughn & Fiona Staples (Graphic Novel)

 Books Finished Last Week:
Reviews will be posted at a later date

Huntress: Crossbow at the Crossroads
Kings Rising
Done Dirt Cheap

Currently Reading:

Scythe by Neal Shusterman - Print - on page 265 of 435
Queen of the Darkness by Anne Bishop - Audio - 23%

 Books to be Read Soon:

Pages Read/ Time Listened
175:17 Hours (about 7+ Days) Listened (none listened this week)
41,506 Pages Read (865 this week)

Books Added to Shelves Recently TBR
Beauty and the Beast by Gabrielle-Suzanne Barbot de Villeneuve
Samurai Rising by Pamela Turner
Dawn Study by Maria V. Snyder
Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss
Saga Vol. 7 by Brian K. Vaughan
Wise Man's Fear by Patrick Rothfuss
Dragon Teeth by Michael Crichton
How to Tame a Willful Wife by Christy English
New World: Rising by Jennifer Wilson
The Sandcastle Empire by Kayla Olson
And I Darken by Kiersten White
World Mythology in Bite Sized Chunks by Mark Daniels
Eliza and Her Monster by Francesca Zappia
When Dimple Met Rishi by Sandhya Menon
Truthwitch by Susan Dennard
Windwitch by Susan Dennard
Done Dirt Cheap by Sarah Nicole Lemon
Frogkisser by Garth Nix
Lawn Boy by Gary Paulsen
Code Talker by Joseph Bruchac
This Savage Song by Victoria Schwab
The Strange and Beautiful Sorrows of Ava Lavender by Leslye Walton
The Beast's Garden by Kate Forsyth
Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee
Addie on the Inside by James Howe
Also Known as Elvis by James Howe
Viking Warrior Rebel by Asa Maria Bradley
New Leash on Love by Debbie Burns
Puss Without Boots by Shari L. Tapscott
Monstress Vol. 2 by Marjorie M. Liu
Everyone is an Aliebn when ur are an Aliebn too by Jomny Sun
The Invisible Library by Genevieve Cogman
Saints Blood by Sebastien de Castell
Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
P.O. Box Love by Paola Calvetti
Britt Marie Was Here by Fredrik Backman
Nomansland by Lesley Hauge
The Secret Horses of Briar Hill by Megan Shepherd
The Secret Loves of Geek Girls by various authors
Vengeance Road by Erin Bowman
This One Summer by Mariko Tamaki
Keep Me Posted by Lisa Beazley
The Prince of Fools by Mark Lawrence
The Nothing Girl by Jodi Taylor
Luin the Sapphire by Rich Feitelberg
His Majesty's Dragon by Naomi Novik
Tortall and Other Lands by Tamora Pierce
Wild Magic by Tamora Pierce
Wolf Speaker by Tamora Pierce
Emperor Mage by Tamora Pierce
Realm of the Gods by Tamora Pierce
The Winter King by CL Wilson
The Christmas Blessing by Donna VanLiere
The Christmas Hope by Donna VanLiere
The Christmas Promise by Donna VanLiere
The Christmas Secret by Donna VanLiere
The Christmas Note by Donna VanLiere
Wonder Woman: Warbringer by Leigh Bardugo
The John Wayne Code by Media Lab Books
The Hearts We Sold by Emily Lloyd-Jones

Books Read From My Shelves

Interesting Tidbits on the Web:


Another week in the books, and another busy one between work, school, being sick and then off to a quick vacation (well work for hubby and vacation for me and Munchkin).  I am scheduling this early but I hope that I am recovered (lost my voice again and a head cold) and getting some relaxation in while away.  I hope you are following me on Instagram because you will get to see the fun adventures (and surprises) we have for Munchkin while we are away.

This week will be another crazy week, trying to cram in as much fun stuff in as we can on vacation and then back to work and school on Thursday and Friday. Then finally Saturday is the Boston Teen Author Festival!  I am super excited because Linsey Miller (author of Mask of Shadows), Traci Chee (Author of The Reader) and Leigh Bardugo (author of the Grisha Trilogy and Wonder Woman: Warbringer) will all be there, but I am also a little nervous because it will be my first time going to Boston on my own, Hubby and Munchkin have soccer and won't be coming.  I am sure all will be fine but I always get a little anxious going somewhere new and with a lot of people (I am so shy I have a hard time interacting).

Hope you are all having a great week!