Monday, April 27, 2009

Akimbo and the Snakes

Alexander McCall Smith!

We loved Akimbo and the Snakes.
The boys want you to know that you will be holding your breath in anticipation.
You will learn more than you wanted to know about snakes.
You will be impressed by Akimbo's courage.

Izie drew a picture of the dreaded green mamba

Read more about Akimbo in the four other Akimbo books. We surely plan to.

The Baseball Chronicle

Sometimes you just need a giant book about baseball.
As always, we have been reading and drawing a ton, we just haven't been drawing too much about the books we've been reading.
Baseball fever has struck.
So when I asked JT what book he wanted to review this week, he picked the 695 page Baseball Chronicle his grandmama just gave him.

Hours and hours of re-reading fun.
Non-fiction heaven for an 8 year old baseball player.

The picture he chose to draw is one of Ken Griffey Jr.
If you have a ball player in your house, well.... this is the book for you

Saturday, April 18, 2009

The Unexpectedly Bad Hair of Barcelona Smith

Barcelona Smith is properly prudent. He is such a careful person that he won't play with animals (for fear of catching diseases), he won't play in a park (for fear of injury), he won't smell roses (for fear of getting poked), and he never smiles (for fear of a bug getting caught in his teeth).

But one day..... his hair decides to take charge. His hair takes him to pet animals, his hair plays on the monkey bars, his hair smells the roses, and his hair makes him out of control.

He allows himself to smile and learns that the risk in doing things just might be worth it.

We loved the pictures and the story.

Here are some pictures of Barcelona's crazy hair. The boys used oil pastels and then rubbed over the drawings with a paper towel. It is unexpectedly fun to create crazy blue-haired men and then rub away at the pictures. You should give it a try.

JT likes the part when Barcelona's hair goes crazy and rides a bicycle.
Izie likes the part when his hair walks him out the door.

The Unexpectedly Bad Hair of Barcelona Smith by Keith Graves

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Daddy Could I Have an Elephant?

Have you ever wondered what would happen if you had an elephant for a pet?
How would you feed him?
Where would you keep him?

In Jake Wolf's picture book, a little boy desperately wants a pet. He asks his dad for a variety of different animals (a sheep, a gorilla, a python) and envisions how fun they'd be. He tries his best to talk his dad into it... only to learn how hard each one would be to keep as a pet.

JT decided that he'd like to have a team of apes as pets at our house. They'd come in handy catching all the fly balls that go into our fir trees, but they would also tear down the trees.
Izie really wants a bird, so this book hit home with him. He decided that the bird would be fun, but he'd eat all the tuna.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

The Big Orange Splot

All the houses look the same in Mr. Plumbean's neighborhood, until a seagull flying by drops a can of orange paint on Mr. Plumbean's house.

The neighbors don't like that his house looks different and ask Mr. Plumbean to paint it.

He does, just not like they think.
"My house is me and I am it. My house is where I like to be and it looks like all my dreams."

Everyone in the neighborhood starts to create the house of his or her dreams. Individuality is honored and the houses are a blast.

We've created our own houses of our dreams.

Of course, baby girl's house of her dreams would consist of having everything at floor level, easy to chew on.

Izie drew a house that resembles a sick monster. You have to swim on the red river to get in.
He was also inspired by the flying seagull to draw his own bird flying overhead clutching food instead of a paint can.

JT drew a baseball mansion. Jackson likes this book because first all the houses were the same and because of a seagull, all the houses changed.

The Big Orange Splot by Daniel Manus Pinkwater