Spring Reads

We have been loving the warmer weather! There has been quite a few rainy days, but we will take it for all the green grass popping up and tulips starting to bloom! Last time I hopped on here I wrote about starting our seeds. They are growing and getting bigger by the day. I’m taking notes to share with you all later once I get them out into the garden, hopefully mid April.

Now, I’m here to share all about our spring reads. Sometimes with all that rain, there’s nothing better to do but curl up and read some books. Because we started seeds I decided to grab quite a few books that have to do with plants, flowers, and gardens. Below its a list of what we have on our spring reading list.

1.Plant the Tiny Seed by Christie Matheson
2. Compost Stew by Mary McKenna Siddals
3. Compost! by Linda Glaser
4. A New Beginning by Wendy Pfeffer
5.It’s Spring by Linda Glaser
6.Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney
7. Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring by Kenard Pak
8. Abracadabra It’s Spring by Anne Sibley O’Brien
9. We are the Gardeners by Joanna Gaines
10. The Gardener by Sarah Stewart
11. Secrets of the Garden by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld
12.Garbage Helps our Garden Grow by Linda Glaser
13. And Then It’s Spring by Julie Gofliano
14. The Tiny Seed by Eric Carle

London’s favorite so far have been ‘And Then It’s Spring’. She loves the transition from brown to green and the waiting, waiting for the seeds to sprout. Very similar to what we are doing now! Waiting for it to be warm enough to move our seeds outside and plant more flowers.

Another great book to talk about the transition between season is Goodbye Winter, Hello Spring! by Kenard Pak. The illustrations are beautiful and there is minimal text so you can really focus on the pictures and notice different things about each season.

If you have any interest in composting, there are a lot of fun books in this list to help you get started. Compost Stew by Mary McKenna Siddals, Compost! by Linda Glaser, and Garbage Helps our Garden Grow by Linda Glaser are all great books to introduce the topic and then there are excerpts in the back that give practical ways to start composting in your own backyard! We’ve been composting for a while and I actually learned some new things from these books!

Secrets of the Garden by Kathleen Weidner Zoehfeld is another great book for more of a scientific look at gardening. It talks about food chains and how each chain starts with a plant. A good introductory book to a topic we haven’t yet discussed. London was very intrigued by the food chains examples and thinking of other insects a bird might eat, or where the food we eat come from.

Plant the Tiny Seed by Christie Matheson is super cute and interactive having you push down the seed, rub the sun for warm, tap the cloud for rain. Lots of fun for little ones with this one. The illustrations are bright and colorful. Combined with the actions this book can keep even your youngest readers engaged.

Two classics would be first, Miss Rumphius by Barbara Cooney, which we just added to our home library. Miss Rumphius travels the world, lives by the sea and vows to make the world more beautiful than she found it. It’s an easy read and can start lots of conversations with your kiddos.

The second classic is actually new to us. The Gardener by Sarah Stewart takes place during the Great Depression and is about a little girl sent to live in the city. She packs a suitcase full of seeds and we hear about her time at her Uncle’s through letters she writes back home. Little by little she adds beauty to the city and ultimately creates a beautiful rooftop garden. Again, many great conversations that can be started with this book. Letter writing, starting a garden in a small space, the Great Depression. It’s a good one that I’m looking to make a permanent part of our home library.

These are the books that really stood out to me. London enjoyed all the books and we would check out any of these again. There’s a little bit of something for everyone in the list I just shared.

How are you all celebrating spring? Have you checked out any new books from your library?

Talk soon!

El

Spring is Right Around the Corner!

I love Fall, but after a long year at home I must say I do believe Spring is my favorite season. I’ve started so many posts over the course of this year, each time hoping that I’d feel more like myself and that I wasn’t forcing myself to share. It just never felt authentic so, I apologize for the radio silence over here. Now that the sun is shining and the days are getting longer I see light! Literally! Hopefully sharing will come more natural and we will be seeing more of each other.

If you follow us on instagram, last week I shared a story showing me and London planting some seeds inside. I’m happy to say we have some sprouts and we have planted even more! So far we have three different kinds of tomatoes, two types of peppers, two types of cucumbers and some peas all growing in our office. We still have all our flowers to sow which I’m hoping to get done later today.

Cucumber seeds sprouted after only a few days. They like moist soil and are super easy to start inside and do well in containers. Just make sure you have a trellis for them to climb!

I’ve done this for a few years now and I love planting seeds with London (now 4) for so many reasons. There are lots of good developmental activities associated with gardening. Just from starting seeds we have done many.

Getting started scooping dirt and opening seed envelopes
  • Fine Motor
    • scooping dirt and filling seed trays
    • picking up seeds and placing them in holes
    • placing markers in proper seed tray
    • using scissors to open seed envelopes
  • Gross Motor/Crossing Midlinepouring water over seeds
    • placing seeds in seed tray
    • moving filled trays to sunlight
  • Math
    • counting seeds
    • counting number of markers
  • Science
    • watching plants grow
    • Understanding what seeds need to grow- dirt, sun, moisture

That’s a lot! And most of these things even young toddlers can help you with. My favorite part about starting seeds is the patience it teaches, responsibility it takes to care of the seeds and the excitement once they see their hard work pay off. Most importantly, It’s just plain fun! I love seeing what all we can learn without really trying.

Are you all ready for spring? What are you most looking forward to? Would you be interested in hearing more about our garden adventure?

Talk soon,

El

All That Jazz

This month London and I are exploring Jazz music. I can be a bit of a music chameleon, hopping around different genres during different parts of my life. This may just be the time for Jazz! We have had so much fun adding new music into our morning routine. Talking about the different instruments and what sounds they make has definitely livened up our breakfast talk. I hope to explore the American Jazz Museum in Kansas City, but with all the COVID-19 case increases, I’m just not sure it’s the smartest choice for us right now. On the up side, the library is open and we’ve been picking up books through the drive through which is AMAZING! Here’s what we’ve been reading.


Jazz Toddler and Preschool Reading List

Ben’s Trumpet by Rachel Isadora– Grab this sweet book and read about Ben, a young boy living in the twenties and dreaming of being a musician. The illustrations are in black and white art-deco style and give you a since of the time and the movement. This has been London’s favorite so far.

Josephine, The Dazzling Life of Josephine Baker by Patricia Hruby Powell– I personally found this book fascinating! It’s a bit longer as well, but the book touches on great topics regarding race, segregation, civil rights, and following your dreams. Josephine Baker is an amazing woman in history

Skit-scat Raggedy Cat by Roxane Orgill– Incredible story. So much history behind Ella Fitzgerald and her childhood. While this one is a bit longer, it was fun for London to relate this story to the music we were listening to. The illustrations are gorgeous and snippets of her lyrics throughout the story.

Squeak! Rumble! Whomp! Whomp! Whomp! A Sonic Adventure by Wynton Marsalis- This book is so fun! A little boy walks through his New Orleans neighborhood and shares the music he hears along the way. Lots of onomatopoeias and catchy rhymes that move you through the book.

This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt-What a cute little book! It’s is a play on the nursery Rhyme “This Old Man”. It has a counting element to it as well as introduces you to different players in a Jazz Band.

Trombone Shorty by Troy Andrews– The author, Troy Andrews shares his own story of how he got his nickname ‘Trombone Shorty’. As a young boy growing up in New Orleans he tells about the importance of music to him, as well as his hometown. It’s well-written and the mixed media illustrations bring the story to life.

What a Wonderful World by Bob Thiele– The bright and colorful illustrations pair perfectly with the lyrics from the song ‘What a Wonderful World’ originally sung by Louis Armstrong in 1967. It’s funny how reading lyrics as a poem or book versus a song makes you think about the message a bit differently. I appreciated the sweet message of hope the lyrics bring. A sweet reminder in these uncertain times.


I hope you guys are able to check out a few of these books! We have kind of just been floating around over here during quarantine. It’s been nice to have a theme to play with and learn about. I especially love that we can incorporate the sense of sound. Having all this extra time at home it’s nice to have some beautiful music in the background while learning and growing with my little.

xxoo,

El