Product Review – Big Mouth Mugs

Sadly or not depending on how you look at it, both my boys have recently discovered the joys of potty humor. I guess maybe separately they always enjoyed it, but now they wind each other up. Bigmouth has a line of mugs that the kids have been digging. Yes, the mugs are huge and bigger than their heads, but that, I can only assume, is why they are enjoying them so much. The product line also includes mugs that hold cookies or donuts but the boys aren’t ready for that yet (or to be more specific, the Mommy won’t allow). The Ninja mug is of particular interest to BB while the shark bite version is a hit with LTD. All of this doesn’t change the fact that both kids spill constantly when drinking from any mug ever.

Book Review – Beauty and the Beak

A perfect storm occurred over the new book, Beauty and the Beak. LTD just finished watching A Dolphin Tale, BB received a bald eagle stuffed animal as a prize, we recently saw Beauty and the Beast in the theatre and we saw the Makers Guild 3-D print different objects at the library. What am I talking about?  Deborah Lee Rose and Jane Veltkamp’s book tells the story of Beauty, a bald eagle that lost most of her beak to a bullet. Found starving, she was nursed back to health, but could not eat or drink on her own. As usual I won’t spoil the ending, but thanks to the kindest of a group of dedicated people Beauty became bionic. Okay, not quite, but she did receive a plastic, 3D printed beak to allow her to truly soar. In addition to the tale, the story also features an update on how Beauty is doing now and cool facts about Bald Eagles including ways to help them. BB went nuts to see the mission patch for Apollo 11.

 

 

Free Play or Flashcards? New Study Nods to More Rigorous Preschools

Click here to read the article.

Book Review – Grand Canyon

For the most part the age difference between the boys isn’t such a big deal but when it comes to bed time stories there are not a lot they can agree on. Jason Chin’s book about the Grand Canyon (Grand Canyon) has something that appeals to all age levels. The tale features big colorful splash pages depicting all manor of wildlife but the story telling structure is geared to a slightly advanced reader. Using a time traveling theme the book shows what the massive canyon looked liked all throughout the last few millions of years. Told via a surrogate hiker character we journey up the layers learning geology and biology. The Grand Canyon is one of those places that everyone says you have to experience because you can’t process the massive scale unless you are standing there. Mr. Chin has created the next best thing to an actual visit especially since the end features a fold out four page spread of the whole canyon (I can only assume the real thing is only slightly more impressive).

 

Book Review – Star Wars Builders

LTD is always up for a good project, but I am not always up for spending a lot of time being his slave. However, both boys are like most humans alive on the planet big Star Wars fans and so projects marrying those worlds are welcome. The Star Wars Builders series of books offers a choice to build some models and avoid the glue. These paper models come in sheets that you punch out and slot the pieces together. The boys have been digging the Droids but there are also Star Fighters and the Millennium Falcon. Additionally, the sets come with an accompanying book offering details and facts about R2 and X- Wings. I will caution that you either need The Mommy or a lot of patience as some of the pieces, especially the ones that need to be bent, can be challenging to assemble. You also need to supervise the pieces as they are taken off the sheet, since the slots will tear if not treated with respect.

Never Felt Better

Thanks to The Mommy’s artistic and creative talents the boys are always up for a good craft project. And I am up for anything that doesn’t involve glue or my sons using the tape dispenser. Since the Spring weather has been unseasonable chilly we have been experiencing screen overload while they are stuck inside. One project that LTD has been doing really well is Marvel Universe Felt. The kit comes with 10 cool characters, the felt sheets, needle, floss and stuffing. BB has been waiting not so patiently for the Hulk and Iron Man to be finished. He hasn’t quite masted the fine motor skills needed for the needle work but LTD isn’t half bad. Thankfully, The Mommy is supervising or I’m sure we only have mutant version of these popular heroes with some being wicked fat with stuffing while others would be pancake flat. So far the family favorite is Captain America as he seems the most cheerful.

Book Review – Henry Hunter and the Cursed Pirates

Now that LTD has plowed through all of Harry Potter the choices are endless. Lately, he has been into Indiana Jones and BB has been bragging on pirates so John Matthews Henry Hunter series seemed like a logic choice. Mr. Matthews is a prolific author who is big into King Arthur (yes, to answer your question he lives in the UK). LTD has been reading the tale out loud to BB with mixes results. However, the story from what I gather is pretty interesting. It seems Henry Hunter’s buddy Charlie needs help because his parents are missing. Henry and his partner Dolf take up the quest. The story is set in the Caribbean which leads us to not only pirates but they pirate himself, Blackbeard. BB is psyched because they are technically ghost pirates. The book features a quick introduction explaining the origins of Mr. Hunter which brought us all up to speed on why he is able to hunt pirates in the first place. The book also has a few illustrations that set the mood and provided BB a welcome distraction from interrupting. Since the author is also a historian the book is rich in detail which makes it slightly cooler than the normal stuff LTD reads. Plus BB has announced he wants to be a ghost pirate for Halloween.

Book Review – Goldfish Ghost

BB didn’t 100% join the Series of Unfortunate Events bandwagon but he wanted in on the Lemony Snicket action. So the new book, Goldfish Ghost satisfies the urge. The paranormal tale, with art by Lisa Brown, centers on a Goldfish (born on the surface, but never addressed as a ghost) who is lonely. He looks for company in many different places but doesn’t quite find what he is looking for. As usual, I won’t spoil the ending, but needless to say he finds a friend. The story is interesting because it doesn’t specific deal with the Goldfish being “dead” but astute readers will pick up on it. The book also provides a welcome opportuinity for BB to say the word ghost, which he pronounces, ghost-is-sss. The illustrations are often busy which provides a nice contrast to the muted tone of the tale. Needless to say when I found out a goldfish can live more than a year I told the kids nope after their request.

 

 

Product Review – Bump It Off

The boys have a casual relationship with cleanliness and in that regard we are always looking for something to assist them in the bath. Anything to try and get to actual clean instead of kid clean. The reusable silcone sleeve, Bump It Off offers a fun way to clean. The uses are laundry, kitchen, pet and body so you pretty much need four if you don’t want to creep out The Mommy. The boys have been digging it as it provides a cooler look than the wash cloth.I dig it because it goes on the top rack of the dishwasher which is a major plus after scrubbing pots and pans. The sleeve design aspect gets the boys to actually scrub in the bath instead of drowning the sea captain that came with the toy fishing boat. The dog remains unimpressed.

 

Working Families

How Child Care Enriches Mothers, and Especially the Sons They Raise