Teach Her Tuesday: Reading with Bob


I am an ex-Scholastic employee. I loved working at that place. Loved being able to say that what I did helped kids becoming lifelong learners. The Frog Princess has had a library since before she was born. Books are important to us for many reasons. But man, I was a nervous wreck when I wondered how this teaching to read thing would work.

I'm blessed in that she has amazing teachers. But as always, I feel that her education is my responsibility. So, after talking to the teachers last spring, I got my sight words together and bought my first box of Bob Books.

I can't say enough about them. I opted to buy the Sight Words box knowing that they had some of the others in her classroom. I recently added Rhyming Words to our repertoire and each afternoon, the Frog Princess selects a book and reads it to me.

It's a joy to watch her understand. To watch her watch me as she reads. There's something magical about books and I don't think I'll ever find the right words to describe it.

For me, Bob Books takes the questions out of my mind. The first box we got came with ready made sight words to help the kids read the books in the box. As you progress, you can just grab the next box in the line.

Reading is a huge milestone in my mind. As I help her find her place in the world of books, I'm so grateful that I can use the Bob Books as stepping stones to the world of reading!

Do you have a favorite go to book/resource to help get kids reading?

Disclosure: I was given the Rhyming Words box by Bob Books after an exchange on social media. All opinions and love of reading are purely my own. Links to the books are affiliate links on Amazon and I hope to make a whole $.025 from them. Carry on, readers. Carry on.

My Love Letter


  Dearest heart,

I haven't been able to stop thinking about you all week. I can't believe we've spent so much time apart.  Yet, we picked back up right where we left off and that has been such a comfort to me.

Thank you for always being there.  For keeping me company when I most need it and always knowing what to say.

I feel bad for having kept you at bay for so long. What was I thinking? My time is consumed by so many other things nowadays.  I think back to the days when it was just you and I. Lazy days spent on the couch or maybe lounging on a beach somewhere.  I can't wait to get a few of those days in.

I've been working hard on school assignments this week and it has been difficult to keep focus. Today I woke up and got started on my homework but you kept popping into my head which is why I stopped to write you this letter hoping it appeases my hunger for you.  All I can think of is getting back to cuddling up with you and continuing the adventure.  And then I feel a little guilty because a couple of times this week I did run to you instead of doing what I was supposed to be doing.  But, can you blame me?

All these years you've known me.  All of these years you've given me exactly what I needed.  Even those times you've made me cry, I've gained something from our interaction.  I can tell you that now that I've found you again, I won't let you go.  No matter how busy I get or how crazy things seem to be.  I promise.  Because I love you and I simply cannot imagine a life without you.

with all of my heart,


PS: Don't act like I'm the only one that feels this way about books!

You can find me and my reading addiction over at the Read and Play Community for one more week! By the way, how do you use books to ignite your child's imagination?

Wild About Books

I think I've told you I have a book problem. Well, it's one of the many things I'm passing down to the frog princess.  But, unlike giggling when she farts, this might actually be beneficial. I started putting her collection into Good Reads but, I've since stopped (she shouldn't have more organization than me, I'm just sayin').  Each night she gets into her bed and asks me to "read book".  I always struggle with what book to pull.

The other day, Wild About Books caught my eye (and not for the first time).  It's a natural book for me because I share the sentiments of the title.

With every reading, she picks up on a new animal, a new activity.  For me, it's more profound that that.  Books mean so much to me.  They paved the path I walked on to get to where I am today.  My parents, who had little education, were very much aware of the importance of books.  And so I never lacked them.

As I grew, books became a way for me to reach into far away lands and extract something new. A way to learn. I learn by reading. By listening to story lines woven in to beautiful words and landscape.  I have a deep respect for authors primarily because of the impact that I know they have on their readers.  I am one of them.

I still remember how I felt reading Are You There God, It's Me Margaret or Forever (still remember the 3 weeks I had to wait to check the book out as the junior high school girls had a deep hold on this one. I recently found a used bookstore that had the same version of the book I read so long ago. Yes, I bought it).

I don't always remember each and every book I've read but what I do know is that books have ignited a fire deep in the center of my heart that cannot be diminished.

On the contrary, with each book I read, the fire seems to grow.  And now, I have the pleasure of lighting that fire for my child.  And let me tell you, I have no words to describe how that feels.

That is why I am so humbled and honored to be a community leader over at The Blog Frog for their Random House Read and Play Community.  Spreading the passion of reading is not something I like to limit to my offspring so, consider yourself as a potential candidate to be infected with the reading bug.

And to start you off on the right foot, we have a Live Chat taking place today @ 9 p.m. EST.  But more than that, there will be live chats with some of your favorite authors!  Who, you might ask? Well, how about Rebecca Stead and Clare Vanderpool tomorrow @ 9 p.m. EST for starters?

So, do you have the reading bug? If you want to catch it, leave us a message over in the community and we'll be sure to help you out.



Diary of a Book Worm

I am clearing out my books! Why you ask? Well, it's part of my decluttering my home, my heart and my mind. Also, I have too many and I've realized I need to part with a few. But it hasn't been easy. Culling through my books this weekend was nostalgic, sad, happy and new. It was the first time that the frog princess saw the mass of books all in one place. The best part about it? As I was going through a pile she walks up to me in her diaper, reaches for a picture book, turns around and slowly backs onto my lap! If I didn't know any better, I'd say she knows the proper position you should take when in the presence of books.

I started reading to her, probably in my 6th month of pregnancy. I would get ready for bed and as I read, she would summersault and twist inside of me. The one word I could think to describe it? Magic! I adore books. I fell in love with them as a child. It was the one thing that I could always ask for. I remember bringing home my Scholastic Book Clubs flyer and being able to order books. Mami used to also take me to the library on 145th between Broadway and Amsterdam. I loved that place. Although my parents did not have a higher education and I rarely saw them with a book (possibly because so much was going on), they had a love of books and an understanding about where those books could take me (both figuratively and literally). I am sad for people who do not understand this very basic thought.

At 4 months, the frog princess was turning pages. It didn't hurt that I worked at Scholastic Book Fairs as a buyer at one point. My fellow book lovers made sure that, by the time she was born, her bookcase was filled. At 20 months, books are part of her play. There are books everywhere and it brings me unending joy to see her handling the books even when she is standing on them.

It has been a process deciding to get rid of a good portion of my books (check out the list here and email me if you're interested, I'm willing to ship them to you. I'm thinking $3 for paperbacks and $5 for hardcovers). But I think it's necessary. Although I have a deep love for them, I know that they are meant to be cracked open and read. Most of these I've read in advanced reader copies and so, the hardcover books sit on my shelf in beautiful condition. That's not to say I am not keeping some. I think I will still be able to fill up 3-4 bookcases. But, I might clear out some more. To make room for new ones and to remind my baby girl that, although books are very important in our lives, they are still just things. And besides, the memory of the books that we read, live on inside of us as long as our imagination allows.

What was the last great book you read? The one that you wanted to tell everyone about? The one that still makes you smile? For me, I'd have to say it's How Do Dinosaurs Say Goodnight? which I read to the frog princess on the dining room floor with about 500 books surrounding us.