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Jack loves to read

Originally uploaded by jen_rab

Speaking of sharing, I thought this was too cute not to share. Jack adores books and reading. And like the bibliophile I am, I love watching him “read” so intently.

I heart that he hearts books πŸ™‚


I’m a bit late on this, but as they say, better late than never!

It’s Children’s Book Week this week, and from what I’ve read, school libraries, bookstores and others are celebrating with various reading-related events. It looks like there are various happenings in NYC for Children’s Book Week, so hopefully, there are some celebrations going on at your local libraries and book stores.
I know I’ve mentioned my obsession for books before, but I truly do believe books are the gateway to creativity. I love how our nephews and nieces love reading too. Michael and I like to compare notes on our shared love for reading. He told me awhile ago how he sometimes likes to “sneak” past his bedtime just to finish a book. Sounds like something I did just the other week! My sister in law left my a voicemail a few weeks ago to tell us that when she was going through Brandon’s book bag, she found the book we got both boys for Christmas. (Since the boys are the same age, we like to get one of the same gifts so they can interact together as cousins. And with this book, we told both nephews that since Jack is their baby cousin, it was their job to “teach him how to be a boy.”) Anyway, my sister in law was so tickled that Brandon carried this book around every where and had notes all throughout the book. In the day and age where kids seem isolated, thanks to the internet and video games, Jeff and I were pretty touched that a book could warrant a special part in our newphew’s busy life.

reading timeGetting lost in a book makes me forget about all the stressors in life, even if it’s 20 minutes at a time. With Jack at such a fun age, I love introducing new books every chance I get. I can’t even begin to describe how big my heart gets when a squirmy Jack will sit on my lap, lunge for a book and settle down with me, the minute I start to read. Honestly, I could be reading the Macy’s sale paper–it makes no difference–he seems to appreciate the idea of reading. And it turns out, according to Jack, his boardbooks make for for great teethers.

With tons and tons of books out there and in honor of Children’s Book Week, I thought I’d list a few of our favorite baby books.

Boynton Books
The Going to Bed Book- This is our nightly ritual. Even when Jack’s in mid-meltdown on the way to sleep, the minute I open this book, he calms down and lays next to me as I read it to him. I almost fall asleep after I say, “and they rock and rock and rock to sleep.”
ABCs-Boynton’s ABC book is such a hit! I really want to believe that Jack likes interesting-sounding and very articulated words. Perhaps, it’s because he loves to watch lips and grab them. Who knows? But, Vicunas Violining is always a line that makes us giggle. Vicuna? C’mon, if an ABC book leads me to googling about an animal I don’ t know about, it’s a keeper!

I Love You Stinkyface

The title says it all! The illustrations and the outlandish theme and importance of unconditional love in this book make so much sense to us!

Who are you Baby Kangaroo?
I bought this at an Earth Day festival, so this is a new book to our library. I love how this doggie goes around the world to find more about a Baby Kangaroo.

Brown Bear, Brown Bear What do you See?
This is yet another classic well known for the illustration and simple dialog. The vibrant colors of Carle’s art is just as fascinating for me as it is for the boy!

And finally, for future purposes for me and for those of you who have big kids, I read on Parent Hacks via Jen Robinson’s book page, a good way to encourage life long love for reading is to let your kids choose Let Young Readers Choose their Own Books.

So, what books do you guys love?

When he looks at me with those big beady brown eyes, I see so much of Jeff. Yet, when those eyes are closed when he’s asleep or if I turn my head just so, I can almost see myself in him. When he flashes that megawatt gummy grin, emphasized with closed eyes, I don’t see the painfully shy child that I once was: I know for sure my kid is his father’s son.

He may only babble mamamama and dadadadada right now, but I know in time, this cheesy smileskid will champion the same charm and quick wit that everyone loves about his father.

As we’re approaching 7 seven months, Jack’s very mobile, but not in the crawling kind of mobile. Like he’s been doing for a few months now, he rolls and rolls until he’s found the best corner of our tiny living room. With that same grace of a sumo wrestler, when he’s in between belly to back roll, he’ll sometimes plop his head and bump it ever so slightly, almost sounding like it might hurt a fragile child. Not this kid. Afterall, he is built like a tank, as his father often describes.

He is a bouncing baby boy personified.
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As an editor in a digital world, it amazes me how so many papers still find their way to my inbox.

As a self-professed bibliophile, lucky for me, lots of books also find their way to my inbox. Some are good, some are really really bad and (fortunately for me) some have no relevance to my “beat.”

I’m not sure how this book made it my way, but I’m glad it did. It’s the memoir of Joel Siegel called, Lessons for Dylan: On Life, Love, the Movies, and Me.

lessons.gifI took the liberty of taking the book into my pump room yesterday and then again onto the train. Let’s just say, right after I laughed out loud, I started crying on the train; not necessarily out of sadness, but as a result of heartfelt compassion. Siegel’s words, all things considered, are truly moving.

I’m only on the third chapter, but I still feel compelled to tell you all about it. Joel Siegel who passed last June, was a film critic for Good Morning America for over 25 years. He became a father for the first time at 54. Just as he began his journey into fatherhood, he learned he had colorectal cancer. The book documents the things he wants to tell his son, in case he isn’t around to do it personally.
His words, especially the profound anecdotes, evoke the love a father has for his son. (who just so happened to rub elbows with celebrities like the Beatles)

Then one day in his school they were talking about pets dying, and Dylan said, ‘My dad might be dying.’ And that was my motivation for this book. If I died, I didn’t want his memories of me to be of my dying. I wanted him to know me as someone who spent his life living. My best memories of my dad were of him laughing.”

But most importantly, it’s the resilient plight of a cancer patient who remains grounded and can easily find the humor in the mundane.

Dear Dylan,
One day you might remember–maybe triggered by a photograph, or a sense memory of a texture or a color–the soft, grey cashmere sweater I bought for you for your second birthday. As an adult you may wonder, “What kind of schmuck buys a cashmere sweater for a two year-old boy?”

The answer is: A schmuck who tempts fate.

In not so many words, Joel Siegel’s memoir hits close to home. It’s a great read so far and I can’t wait to dive further into it this weekend. My recommendation is a far cry from Oprah’s book club, but if you like memoirs, I’m sure you’ll enjoy this one.

So, it’s my due date. Yippee. I’ve had a lot of memorable lessons throughout this fantastic voyage. From the candid conversations with several of my girlfriends who haven’t had kids yet, it’s obvious that everyone is curious in their own way and has their own set of questions. So this if for you girls. Here’s my list of stuff. It’s stuff that nobody tells you, stuff that I couldn’t live without, stuff to avoid, secrets of pregnancy and randomness about my experience with pregnancy. I should be working, but I feel compelled to share this ongoing list that I’ve been working on. And so to commemorate these 40 weeks, here’s my list of lessons learned in no particular order.
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Happy happy summer everyone! With today being the first full day of summer AND it being Friday, I have to say I’m most excited about today marking the beginning of my third trimester!

I don’t want to jinx myself, but physically, I’m feeling awesome. My belly gets bigger and bigger every day, but I’m managing. I keep telling everyone that I’m feeling very turtle-like lately. You know how turtles can’t flip over if they’re on their backs? Yeah, that’s me if I’m on the couch or laying in bed.

tutle.jpg Emotionally, I’m ok. I have my definite ups and downs as usual– sometimes the extreme mood swings scare me, so I can’t imagine what Jeff must feel like. I’m also starting to “miss” my old life. It’s finally settling in that there’s no turning back. I haven’t really missed much up until now. I miss going to the bar every Friday for what the buck and enjoying a night out with Jeff and our bar friends. I’m definitely going to miss the Sangria this summer. Summer is my favorite time of year and I have so many fond memories of being carefree and young. At the same time, my excitement for the babe and getting everything into place for his arrival is starting to cloud those missed memories.

On a happier note, I’m counting down to our vacation in July. I can’t wait to go home, go to the beach and relax!

On that note, I thought I’d do another list to commemorate the end of my second trimester.

1. My husband enjoys drinking, sometimes a little too much πŸ™‚ And so I yell like a banshee.
2. There’s research on about everything kid-related. Everyone has an opinion, didn’t you know?
3. People like to stare at my Mr. Softee ice cream.
4. I would eat a burger every day if I could.
5. Baby B. will be a music lover for sure.
6. I dreaded the transition into maternity clothes.
7. The first flutters was an amazing feeling!
8. My late grandma left quite the indelible impression.
9. Our town floods like crazy.
10. Listening to Baby’s heartbeat made things so much more real!
11. Prenatal massages are heavenly.
12. News alert: I’m big and I’m ok with that!
13. Shirley Temple martinis are a fun substitute.
14. My mom’s still excited.
15. I hear angels when I see Target.
16. Jeff now understands the concept of muumuus.
17. I truly believe that this world deserves another person as wonderful as Jeff.
18. He’s a boy!
19. And he’s “packin‘”
20. Our moms rock.
21. Baby Bargains has been our bible.
22. Furniture was ordered.
23. Babies are still expensive.
24. If I don’t be careful, baby’s first word might be, asssssshooooole.
25. My brother’s a big kid.
26. Surprisingly, Buckler’s is a delicious non-alcoholic beer.
27. Our niece is adorable. She’s going to be a great “big sister” cousin.
28. Baby hiccups in utero are great.
29. Supernanny does no wrong in Jeff’s eyes.
30. Baby clothes shopping is fun.
31. I’m getting even rounder.
32. Change and sacrifice are hard.
33. The glucose test is gross.
34. I still like ice cream.
35. My dad’s a superhero.
36. Baseball, buddies and beer make it all better.

Where has the time gone? I really thought my pregnancy was going to drag painfully… maybe it will over the next few months, but I’m doubting that!

so what do I do? With my journalistic instinct, I immediately logged into our local library’s database to look up all of the latest and greatest baby books.

β€œThe more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”

-Dr. Suess

Just ask my dad– I read a lot. Ever since kindergarten, I’ve had a love affair with books. I’d acquire as many as I could until I took over dad’s tool space in the garage. I was accused of having TOO many books. I went to the library when I was happy. I spent weekends there all during high school. And even, I used to scope out cute boys while I sat at my microfiche station.

It’s 25 years later, and though the circumstances are much different today, I still rely on reading tons of books. My local library is in a gorgeous 150-year old building and boasts such dramatic architecture. However, the baby book section was a little lacking. I did find a tall enough stack to bring home to start my research!

I left with several of the essentials: What to Expect When You’re Expecting, an old edition of Baby Bargains, Belly Laughs, How to Avoid Miscarriages (unbiased research, not trying to be morbid!) and How to Juggle Work and Pregnancy.

Based on whether I like the books or not, I plan on buying the books that I need for reference. And for anyone that cares, perhaps I’ll give my own personal reviews on the books. Off to hit the stacks!

Ma'am put down the camera

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