Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Sweet Child of Mine

Watch: Boise State Out of the Blue
Read: Sports Illustrated The Football Book

I know. Stop yapping 
about my son and football.
But I can't. 

Nick played his first game last Saturday.
He's all in. 

 I brought home the collection above 
from the library 
in honor of his passion.

Can I just say, how absolutely awesome is the 
for carrying a Boise State Football film?!
I know they were thinking of him.
And they made his week.

I wrapped the collection like a present. 
Because that is what the library has been for us.
A gift. 
And my hope is Nick will see
the library as a legacy for his family someday.

Rough and Sweet
Child of Mine.

Is the music for me?
Yes. Yes it is.

What collection from the library will you bring home 
to honor your child's passion today?

xoxo Michele

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

Carolina Reunion ~ Romare Bearden

Cook: Neo Soul

Oh, Romie, I vividly remember the first time I spied your book
of collages  ~ in my son's old school three years ago. 
Like a Mad Hatter, I hurriedly kissed Nick goodbye and raced
to the public library. I checked out everything they had.

On September 2nd, Charlotte, NC, will celebrate your
100th birthday by holding exhibitions at the major
museums, including an honorary exhibit by
mixed media artist Chris Watts at the Davidson College.

Our family is ready, thanks in no small part to the library. 

Have I mentioned that I babysit while my children are in school?
The parents are fabulously cool teachers
and the husband knows all the hip details
about the Harlem Renaissance period.

Like how Bearden's mom was a journalist and
moved the family from Charlotte to Harlem when Romare
was four. And how poet Langston Hughes hung out 
with the Bearden family.

And Duke Ellington was one of Bearden's first clients.
The cookbook is written by the grandson of 
Harlem's "Queen of Soul Food", Sylvia Woods.

Romare Bearden was a voracious reader. A World War II vet.
He could have played pro baseball after graduating
from NYU. He loved cats (my daughter just adores this).

Yes - my children heart Bearden. And
through this admiration they have learned about 
an important time in history. 

The library has the following reads & music for children that
make this collection even finer:

Romare Bearden: Collage of Memories
Langston Hughes: My People
Romare Bearden: L'IL Dan The Drummer Boy
Wynton Marsalis: J Mood
Zora Neale Hurston: Roy Makes a Car


Charlotte Mecklenburg Library's
will host an exhibition of 27 original
Romare Bearden illustrations 
for L'IL Dan, The Drummer Boy

Thursday, September 15th 
Saturday, November 19th.

These panels and text were discovered 20 years
after Bearden created them
and the book was published posthumously
in 2003 by Simon and Schuster.

Please visit the ImaginOn website for further details. 

This is the real power of the library - 

Be passionate today - and share it with your children.
The library rocks.
I would have said they jazz, but that didn't sound right.

xoxo Michele

Monday, August 29, 2011

North by Northwest ~ Inspired by Natalie: Part Two

Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats
Read: Thimble Summer (Ages 3rd-5th Grade) 

Thanks for joining part two of our Alaskan and library inspiration, 

courtesy of Natalie from Out Here'n the Flats.

To visit Part One, click here

 She recommended Thimble Summer
Arielle and I just started it this evening.
You know that sublime feeling
when you find a treasure while out thrifting?
Yep - giddy girls over here tonight.

Written in 1938, this book had escaped my 
watchful eye at the library before now.
Natalie, you are a literary angel!

Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats

Natalie's photos inspire me to learn more about Alaska and
share that knowledge with my children.
 Orcas Around Me is exceptional:

Read: Orcas Around Me (Ages 2nd-5th Grade)

We read aloud The Year of Miss Agnes last year. 
We are reading it again. 
Miss Agnes is a role model for me
Read: The Year of Miss Agnes (Ages 1st-5th Grade)

Our son is a Deadliest Catch fan. Did you know the library
has smoochie Sig Hansen's biography?
Don't judge me. 
Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats

Natalie introduced me to the Avett Brothers.
I'd never heard of them before. This might not be a bad thing,
but considering they are from North Carolina (where I live)
and they are beyond awesome
it shows how much I have to learn.

So I picked up this Alaska/North Carolina duo
from the library as my next read/listen:

Great reads can transport your family without 
ever leaving home.

Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats

The library can take you on that journey.

Visit your travel agent librarian today.

Thank you, Natalie, for sharing the beauty of 
your family 
and the library.
All are priceless treasures.

Please join me tomorrow as we get ready
to commemorate Romare Bearden. 
The library has everything you need to cherish
and celebrate this American icon.

Natalie, did they write this song for us library lovers??
Yes. Yes they did. 

xoxo Michele

"Ten thousand words swarm round my head
Ten million more in books written beneath my bed..."

Sunday, August 28, 2011

She Walks In Beauty

All the books above are alive and well and
living in the heart and mind of our daughter.

They can be found at your local library.
Give your child the priceless gift of reading today.

I can't believe she's ours.

Happy Birthday, Arielle.

xoxo Your Family

Saturday, August 27, 2011

Child of Time

This great novel is at your local library. Just click here
xoxo Michele

Friday, August 26, 2011

North by Northwest ~ Inspired by Natalie: Part One

Designed By Natalie
Watch: The Man In The Moon

One of my favorite gifts in blogging 
is the people I meet.
Not always in real life, unfortunately. 
Like pen pals ~ only we
are literary pals and share 
an affinity for the library. 

Natalie was one of the first online friends I made when starting
this blog in June. I asked her to design a collection
from the library and became hopelessly attached to it myself.  
I'd like you to meet her and her family.
Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats

Doesn't this photo just melt your heart with happiness, or what?
She and her firefighter hubby, along with their three
children live in Kodiak, Alaska.

Photo Courtesy of 

She mentioned they look forward to finding
the collections I highlight each week at their local library.
I feel the same way about her great grouping.

Can I just say that when I picked up Ahab's Wife,
my eyes were captivated by the cover, but my hands
were registering the weight of the book and thinking
small print + 663 pages = no sleep.

But it is so worth it.
I want to check into a hotel for a week,
register under a false identity,
put a Don't Even Think About Knocking sign on the door
and disappear into the pages.
Photo by Natalie Out Here'n the Flats

She hand stitches Red Salmon. I am guessing she whipped
up this beauty while listening to the Avett Brothers.
I had never heard of them before Natalie's recommendation. 
They are dreamy.
Like the movie.
And the cookbook.
And this photo of Natalie's daughter.
Photo by Natalie: Out Here'n the Flats

 Natalie has fond childhood memories
of visiting her library and wants to pass 
that tradition on to her children. 

The legacy she is weaving for her family
~ like her flawless collection from the library ~
 is priceless beauty. 

Please come back and join us on Monday for part two of
 North by Northwest ~ Inspired by Natalie.
We will feature more books inspired by the beauty
of Alaska, family, friends and the library.

 Please visit your library and Natalie's blog today!

xoxo Michele

Thursday, August 25, 2011

Struck by the Thunderbolt Kid

Photo Courtesy of Courier Mail

I won't hide it, I love this author and have for years.
It started with this book:

He is from Iowa. I am from Idaho, but most people get
Idaho and Iowa confused; so I claim both.
While I'm at it, I'll claim Bill as my brother. 
I can always say I confused him with my other brother, Blake.

And who could forget these beauties:

But nothing prepared me for 
what I found at the library today.

For Children! That wasn't an earthquake you felt 
on Tuesday; it was me doing hand springs all
the way home with this bad boy. Trust me,
everything is in here. Pairing Bill's sense of humor
and masterful storytelling with science is genius.
 Well, my 3rd grade daughter was walking up
 the wall again, but she didn't leave.
My 5th grader was glued on every word and picture. 

Sigh. That's my big brother Bill. From Idaho.
Have I been struck by lightning?
No. Just the library. 

Which Bill Bryson book is your favorite?

xoxo Michele

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Summer Schooled

Just a thought as our children head back to school:
It is never too late to dream a new design
learn a new skill or create a new goal.
Allow passion to be your teacher,
the library your textbooks
for a lifetime of

Here is my latest obsession:

What is yours?

xoxo Michele

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Corps of Discovery

Nicholas has a handful of books 
that he asks me to re-read
This book tops that list. 
It is written from the
viewpoint of Lewis's dog, Seaman.
It is humorous. Nerve-racking. And most
important, it is history.

Each chapter begins with a 
paragraph or two from Meriweather Lewis's
journal. Then Seaman takes over, 
and he has an incredible tale to tell. 
To know my son has fallen in love
with these brave men and their courageous crew
along with Sacajawea and the Native American Indians 
would be enough; but to share in the belly laughs
as Charbonneau lets go of the rudder and almost
loses their maps and journals, or allows a buffalo
to stampede through their camp while he
should be on sentry duty brings this journey to life
for me and my son. That is priceless.
We are living history
Photo Courtesy of Nick's Grandma Cathy

The rest of this collection just reinforces the book
Nick wanted to cook something that would remind him
of Bird Woman and Pomp (although we continue our
laugh affair with Charbonneau and his "Boudin Blanc").
George Winston has me wondering if he's channeling
the spirits of Lewis and Clark. And Hal Holbrook narrates
the PBS film by Ken Burns - we never tire of this classic.  

How did we find this book?

A dedicated children's librarian named Beverly
knew my son loved books that were
narrated by dogs, and recommended Roland Smith's brilliant read. 

Your librarians can take you on a journey of discovery - just ask them.
They know the way to living history.

xoxo Michele

Monday, August 22, 2011

Made For THOSE Mondays

Some days you just can't get up off the couch. 

Those days were made for this dynamic duo:

Our hearts and prayers are with my niece 
as she recovers from a scary accident this weekend.

Calvin and Hobbes are on their way, Sammi.
Along with all the hugs and kisses the angels can carry. 

xoxo Michele 

Saturday, August 20, 2011

How Shakespeare Influences Football

The Green Bay Packers and the Chicago Bears are rivals.
   Like the Capulet's and the Montague's?
Does everything have to tie into a book?
   Yes. Yes it does.  

The library has the most awesome Shakespeare
books for children. Just click here.

This weekend I will be tackling the above menu 
while I ponder how my oldest got old enough to play tackle football.

Any suggestions on how I could make my menu easier to use?
Or make peace with the fact that he loves this rough and tough game?

xoxo Michele

Friday, August 19, 2011

HappE Reader

Have I been living under a rock?

When I found out the library offers E-books and
 Digital Media Downloads
I nearly wrecked my face with the eyebrow freeze: ^ ^

My daughter was all like: You didn't know?

Apparently not.

In my defense, I don't own an iPod or iPad or Kindle or Nook
or any other fancy-schmancy techie device.
But if you do, and didn't know that the library
has oodles of titles just waiting for you,
this is your Christmas gift from me. In August.

If you live in the Charlotte area, 
click on the links below and use your library card
to start shopping for audio and ebooks, music and eflicks.

Click here if you don't have a library card. 

E-books & Digital Media Download Options

Download Audiobooks, eBooks, music, and eFlicks available from your library. Choose a service below to browse our collection of downloadable media. You can read, watch or listen on a computer, a portable music player or other portable devices in a variety of formats.

Overdrive offers AudioBooks, eBooks, Music & eFlicks. Audio files from Overdrive are offered in formats compatible with iPods, iPhones,cell phones and most other MP3 players. Other formats include Adobe PDF, Adobe E-pub and MobiPocket Reader.
Go to Overdrive | Quick Start Guide | Compatible Ebook Devices | Compatible Audio & Video Devices | Nook Tutorial
EBSCOhost eBookseBooks on EBSCOhost
View eBooks on EBSCOhost.
Audiobooks coming soon through OneClickDigital.
Go to eBooks on EBSCOhost | EBSCOhost Support Center | EBSCOhost Downloading Tutorial
MyiLibrary offers eBooks and Audiobooks with subjects focusing primarily on classic literature, history, biography, language learning, health, and medicine.
Go to MyiLibrary eBooks | Go to MyiLibrary Audiobooks | Help & How-to's

She helped me find this information.
I would be living under a rock lost without her.
But my eyebrows wouldn't be so pointy. 
I need more books to read, what have
been your favorite titles this year?

Have a terrific weekend!

xoxo Michele