House of Literature Bookmobile

This is the place I share book (movie) selections and reviews I have found worth mentioning. I'll also share gleanings of family life, faith, home education, and ongoing writing projects. Book selections will include children's books, books on home education, Catholic books, classics, series, raising children, and books that are made for reading under a shady oak tree with lemonade, in a bubble bath with a latte', or next to a snuggly fireplace with a cup of hot cocoa. Happy Reading!

Monday, February 28, 2005

Quiet Reading w/ Toddlers

Quick, easy way to keep your toddler/pre-schooler busily happy (and quiet) while you're reading a read-aloud chapter book to your other children... Give him/her a roll of calculator paper and crayons.

Be A Brave Writer

I am pleased to announce that Julie Bogart of Bravewriter and author of The Writer's Jungle is available for a Q/A session at House of Literature this first week of March.

Julie's Brave Writer Lifestyle-eloop offers free guidance and support to parents wanting to " a Brave Writer Lifestyle with their kids."

The ideas there (and at her blog) are sooooooo cool!
We are delighted to have her join us.

Friday, February 25, 2005

The Best Long-Term Book Investment

The best investment I have made in a long time is the .50 cents I spent at my library's discarded table on William J. Bennett's audio set The Book of Virtues.

We've had the book since it was published in 1993. But our read-alouds with it never fully took-off. I began finding picture books with these little treasured nuggets of virtue and that has been our mainstay. Still there are many stories not found and not read.

I knew I had found a priceless piece of character education the first time I pushed one of these tapes into the cassette player.

We listen to a story, a poem, a moral, a myth, Scripture, a fable, a quote each road trip we take in the vehicle. And my children are hearing the best of the best stories read by Charlton Heston, Harriet Walter, Fritz Weaver, Tom Selleck, Michael York and many more talents.

If I had to pick only one literary treasure to keep in my ever-expanding home library, this would be the one.

Thursday, February 24, 2005

We have two winners of the Summer Mystery Trip!

I will not reveal their names because then someone might try to blackmail them into revealing the selected summer read. : )

If you're still curiously playing detective, you might want to check out a list of Newbery Medal books.

Stay tuned!

Lit Alive! Review

Elizabeth Yank gave my book Literature Alive! a very generous, wonderful review at .

Click on "About Homeschooling" in the lefthand sidebar, then click on "Books About Books" and scroll down.
Thank you, Elizabeth!

Wednesday, February 23, 2005

Thank You, Daniel Webster

Opa came this morning for his usual cup of coffee.
We had just read Longfellow's The Midnight Ride of Paul Revere and Chels wants very much to see the Old North Church.

Opa shared his past tour of Boston with the kids, especially his enjoyment of visiting a local Boston pub. He got to sit at the original wooden bar and in the exact spot Daniel Webster enjoyed his liquid afternoon refreshment.

"Who's Daniel Webster?" my 11-year-old wanted to know. "A singer?"

"No, Garrett. Think for a minute. in Webster's Dictionary."

"You mean somebody wrote that book?"

Well, of course. Daniel Webster did."

"You mean he actually wrote the dictionary? How boring."

Okay, so perhaps my NASCAR fanatic, golf-enthusiast son thinks it's boring. But even he has to admit that people use the dictionary everyday. It's quite the best-seller, I'm sure.

Thursday, February 17, 2005

Summer Mystery Trip

Plans are being made at House of Literature for a Summer Reading Trip. Children may make this trip alone or with their parents.
A series of clues will be announced between February and May 2005. These clues will provide hints to the final destination and the book that will serve as our guidebook.

To obtain your official flight ticket and upcoming clues, all interested parties may go to House of Literature and click on the Mystery Link provided.

The first two people to figure out the travel destination (city and place) and the selected book, will get a free copy of the book!

Get your ticket now so you will not miss out on any clues or handouts and other important notices.

You may make your guess by emailing one of the online librarians .
If you don't have a guess, I suggest you see your lawyer and open up a special file. You'll need it. ; )

Guessing games and suggestions are allowed at the Online Library Forum, but I will not say yay or nay to any guesses done on the public forum. The official word will be given out on May 10, 2005. I want to keep everyone guessing for now.

Happy Reading!

~ House of Literature Librarians ~

Wednesday, February 16, 2005

Heart's Desire

I have resorted to reading one of the Junie B. Jones books to Chels. It's the Junie B. Jones is Almost a Flower Girl by Barbara Park.

Chels is a tad upset because she has never been a flower girl. (Junie B. Jones hasn't either). Chels's two older brothers have both been ringbearers (the oldest twice) and her older sister has been a flower girl. So Chels is feeling left out. After all, don't all little girls dream of dressing prettily and walking down the aisle? Most do. I know I did.

It isn't that she wasn't asked to be in a wedding. My brother almost remarried and we were searching for a flower girl dress when the wedding was called off. While I'm glad they had the sense to call off the wedding before they followed through with it, Chels was crestfallen. Poor dear. She desperately wants to be a flower girl. (So does Junie B. Jones).

So this is one time I'm resorting to a mass media book to assure my little girl that not everyone gets asked to fulfill her heart's desire...but it's alright to dream and sigh.

In an attempt to move on and focus on the beautiful and special, we're looking forward to a First Communion celebration next spring. We're already looking at beautiful dresses with bows and pearls and sashes.

Perhaps we'll even take a few practice trips down the aisle. : )

A Full Stomach

Chels came to me Valentine's morning after a failed attempt at finding her favorite "tea time" book. It took me a while to figure out which book she was talking about. It's a cheap K-Mart book with real photos of little girls planning a tea party. I didn't realize she loved this thin paperback book so much. We looked in the net pockets of the vehicle and on the hallway bookshelf. Then I got busy with something and guided her to the small bookshelves in the living room where the older children books are kept.

Later I found her still sitting at that bookshelf...reading. When I checked on her again, she was still sitting at that bookshelf...reading. And later she was still sitting at that bookshelf...reading. She never found the treasured teatime book, but she did a lot of unexpected reading during the search.

She did not let the book's disappearance ruin her plans. She carried out a nice little tea party...invitations, baking, and all.

We baked heart-shaped cookies and the girls decorated them with lots and LOTS of sprinkles. Then Chelsea began putting my Valentine fudge on a plate, and emptying a bag of goldfish crackers onto another plate, and arranging the heart-shaped cookies prettily on another plate. She found a half-full jug of orange punch leftover from the co-op Valentine party, and grabbed some cups. "We're going to have a tea party today," she informed everyone, and busily set up everything on the outside picnic table.

Then she took out her pen and stationery set and preceeded to cut minature tea invitations and write on everyone of them:

Come to my tea party!
From: Chelsea

No time. Just come!

Sitting outside in 80 degree weather, I served myself some extra goldfish crackers. I noticed bits of grass in the plate. I choose to overlook it without comment and continued eating. I love goldfish crackers. : )

On the way back to the house, I stepped over a patch of fallen goldfish crackers---bright orange on a green backdrop. They were scattered so my first impression was correct. The ones on the plate had been salvaged. I don't suppose they tasted any different.

Monday, February 14, 2005

Mr. Groundhog Lied

Sitting outside today for a tea party in 80 degree weather, Chelsea remembered a recent Groundhog Day study: "Hey, Momma, I thought we were suppose to have six more weeks of winter."

"Yes, dear, but we live in Louisiana."

How do you tell a seven-year-old that Mr. Groundhog lies through his teeth? I guess we could always say, "The shadow made him do it."

A Full Heart

What a wonderful Valentine's Day!
My dear husband remembered and brought me coffee in bed as well as a gift-wrapped truffle dish of fudge! Yum!

The children awoke to gift bags on the table containing secret little gifts.
Even the 17 year old was give candy and a container of beef jerky sticks. I just cannot NOT give him something. He's forever my baby boy. : )

We made heart-shaped cookies today. While blending the sugar, butter and eggs together Chels told me, "This is just like the old days, huh, Momma? Baking from scratch. I just love it!"

This was followed by a wonderful litany of praise from my girls, "..."Momma, you're such a good momma. You buy us Valentine gifts and make cookies with us and let us roll out the dough and you help me with my work and..."

To think that I would have missed this wonderful, heartfelt exclamation from my daughters had I declined the baking process simply because I did not wake up planning to bake. I'm so glad we did.

Keep talking, honey. Momma's listening. : )

Sister Lucia of Fatima Dies

Sister Lucia of Fatima Dies Feb. 13, 2005

I best book I've read concerning Fatima and the 3 children is:
Our Lady of Fatima by William Thomas Walsh

May she rest in peace!

Friday, February 11, 2005

Are You My Mother?

The girls and I read Are You My Mother? by P.D. Eastman and enjoyed viewing this site offered by ClickSchooling.

Time for a Virtual Field Trip at ClickSchooling!
Recommended Website:RandyRhine: The Robin Family
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