Children Diversity Reading Challenge

The 12 Books of #Diversity for the Holidays Day 2

The 12 Books of #Diversity for the Holidays


Welcome back to our #diversity countdown to Christmas. Our second book is

Making Friends with Billy Wong by Augusta Scattergood.

Azalea is not happy about being dropped off to look after Grandmother Clark. Even if she didn’t care that much about meeting the new sixth graders in her Texas hometown, those strangers seem much preferable to the ones in Paris Junction. Talk about troubled Willis DeLoach or gossipy Melinda Bowman. Who needs friends like these!
And then there’s Billy Wong, a Chinese-American boy who shows up to help in her grandmother’s garden. Billy’s great-aunt and uncle own the Lucky Foods grocery store, where days are long and some folks aren’t friendly. For Azalea, whose family and experiences seem different from most everybody she knows, friendship has never been easy. Maybe this time, it will be.
Inspired by the true accounts of Chinese immigrants who lived in the American South during the civil rights era, these side by side stories–one in Azalea’s prose, the other in Billy’s poetic narrative–create a poignant novel and reminds us that friends can come to us in the most unexpected ways.

I want you to read this book because, like me, I had limited knowledge of the Chinese population in the South during the 50s and 60s. We need more books with Chinese characters, btw!


Bibliographies, Information, General

Add this to your Summer Reading list – Families on Foot : Urban Hikes to Backyard Treks and National Park Adventures

Families on Foot : Urban Hikes to Backyard Treks
and National Park Adventures

Thinking about hiking this summer? Here’s a book that’ll help out. From what to pack, to what to cook,
it’s all inside.

Down and Dirty Tips and Tricks for Families on the Trail Published in partnership with the American Hiking Society, Families on Foot offers practical advice and engaging activities to make hiking even more fun for families. You’ll find clever ideas and inspiration that apply to kids of all ages–from tackling diaper blowouts in the backcountry to using smartphone apps and GPS to engage teenagers with nature. Information for children with special needs and seniors also is included. Author Jennifer Pharr Davis, the former record holder of the fastest thru-hike of the Appalachian Trail, together with her husband Brew Davis, marries old-fashioned know-how on safety, preparation, and trail conservation with modern day activities and technology, inspirational and interactive games, and down-and-dirty fun on the trail. Information includes smart tactics for families with kids of a variety ages on the trail–from tackling diaper blowouts in the backcountry to getting teenagers engaged in nature with smartphone apps and GPS–and is inclusive of special needs children and senior adults.

Mad props to the book for including pregnant women and folks with special needs in the book. Hiking is for everyone!


Help your kids survive summer vacation with Kathi Lipp

Surviving Summer Vacation by Kathi Lipp

Surviving Summer Vacation by Kathi Lipp

The subtitle of the ebook is just as great as the title: Plans and Prayers for a Mom’s Sanity.  Isn’t that great? With families being busier than ever, summer  can sometimes be overwhelming. The kids get a break from school but yet Mom still has a long list of chores to get done and now she has to juggle the kids into that mix.  It can be stressful.

Here are some of Kathi’s tips that I thought were great:

  • Plant a pizza garden, “marinara based meals all summer long” and dinner? SMART!
  • Create experiences that Mom wants to participate in too, so it’s not drudgery for her as well. GENIUS
  • Summer screen time. Set limits. GO PLAY
  • Book club where “no one gets in trouble if they don’t read the book one month” MY KINDA CLUB
  • Create a home library: buy books at thrift stores and garage sales.
  • Develop a home reading program with prizes and games.

I LOVE these bookish ideas! I would add: make a special reading nook. I like reading on a comfy couch by a window with pillows but wouldn’t an outdoor tent or fort be fun too? Maybe a treehouse? Or maybe a mom cave?

Check this book out. It’s a quick read and you might find something in it for yourself! What’s one bookish activity your family enjoys during the summer?

Children Lists

Whatcha Reading? Summer reads for Middle Grade


Let’s revisit some summer reads from the past!

Here’s my Summer Reading picks for middle grade/tweens.

Watch the video!

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[email protected]

It’s #Blogust! How Are you Keeping My Littles Healthy?

As a [email protected] Champion, I’m keen on making sure all my littles stay healthy. Why? Because I don’t have littles of my own anymore, all the other little kiddies in the world belong to me, now. And because I am so concerned with all my littles, I want to keep them healthy so they can continue to enjoy good books.  After all, my fave saying is, a child who is sick can’t read.  How can you enjoy reading when you’re sick and dying?  You can’t. That’s why it’s up to us grown ups who are in charge of our littles to make sure they get the best care possible.

And how do you do that?



Look at those sweet little faces? Don’t you want to just squeeze them?

That’s why they invented #Blogust. To remind everyone that there is still time to protect children.

Get on the band wagon. Vaccinate your kids. If you’re behind on vaccines, do it now.

Spread the love of good health for the kiddos. Spread the message about #Blogust and let everyone know you’re a supporter. Take to social media and tell the world!

1 comment or 1 share = 1 vaccine.

The world listens.

And so do I.


Don’t make me come get you. Tell me how you are keeping our littles healthy this summer!

Books Children

I Love Having Friends Who Read: Kid Picnic Edition

Isn’t it great to have friends who read? You know what’s better than that? Having friends with kids who read! There’s no better way to spend a warm and sunny summer afternoon than having a picnic and sharing books.



As you can see, the three of us are having a great time looking at books and preparing for our outdoor Storytime. Many thanks to my young friends who were eager to talk about their favorite books. It’s not difficult to have an impromptu picnic. All you need are a few supplies:

  • Bag of durable books (I always keep a bag or two in my car) that you can grab and go.
  • Picnic blankets folded and ready to go. Darla a professional organizer at Heartwork Organizing, always has hers ready.
  • A friend or two. Thanks to Barb of A Life in Balance for sharing her little one with us.
  • Quick and healthy lunch options
  • Water (gotta stay hydrated)!

Now that you’ve gathered your supplies, choose a shady spot under a tree at home or in your fave park. Spread out your blankets, eat your snacks and get to talking about books!

Rainy day? Don’t worry, clear out a spot in the living room and have an indoor picnic!

Encourage your little one to lay back and browse through any book they like. Make it fun, make it easy, and they’ll be readers for life.

How do you and your littles enjoy reading together?



The Upshot: Summer Vacation Reading for Tweens