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Karenna has taken an interest in poetry.  She likes Robert Frost.  She knows "Fire and Ice" nearly by heart and read it in class.  When Aunt Steffie came by apparently she told her the bent pages were the Alexander Pope pages.

After staying up New Year's Eve and being forced to take a nap the following day, she opted instead to play scribe and recopy selected poems into her notebook.  (I found Elizabeth Barrett Browning's "Sonnet #43" rewritten in her neat little print later as I was cleaning.)

On Monday morning Chris noticed that Karenna's backpack was weighted down, so he opened it up and searched it.  Out came the following anthologies from my undergrad English Ed major days:

  • e.e. cummings,
  • Margaret Atwood, and
  • 500 poems

This would be bad not only because she would have to carry it, but I not want Karenna trying to recite "she being Brand" to her first-grader friends!

When did I get a kid who keeps a chapter book in her desk at school to read when she finishes her schoolwork?  When did I get a kid who reads to me from a book by looking up a story in the Table of Contents? Where did my baby go? Sigh.

Jude loved loved books, every Dr. Suess we read,
And Harry Potter and Matilda stories for bed,
Last night, when the Jude-man lost his bedtime book,
It was not to be found, So I offered to look,
"Is it in my room, Joodlebug?" No, not there.
Jude and I looked nearly every where.
Then who should offer to help, but the Daddy himself,
"Jude's been reading and hiding on the bottom bookself,"
But, as I headed toward the shelf behind our tree,
I heard a voice from a boy just over three,
"No, don't look there, there's not candy canes!"
(If you are parent, I don't need to explain
what I found on the shelf, sticky and half-eaten,
no book, but a mess by a boy who may need a beatin')*

Disclaimer: We do not beat our children. This is fiction people!

Jude (folding the pop-up book shut, making sound effects): We're being crushed! Aaaaaaagh!

Next week my husband and I were invited to a Reading Picnic at Karenna's kindergarten readiness camp.  We were instructed to bring a blanket and some of Karenna's favorite books.

Jude's alternating between Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone and his shorter books.  Karenna, mainly alternates between having chapter books read with a rare shoter book which she helps to read in between.

So I thought I'd take this time to share with my readers my kids' favorite reads and hopefully you will comment and shore yours as well.  If you have kids the same age (or approaching it), maybe we can exchange ideas.  If yours are older, I'm sure we'd all love to hear what great books are out there as our kids get older.


  • Harry Potter series - She's about to finish Prisoner of Azkaban and is starting to notice differences between the books and movies, as well as get outraged with authority fugures like Cornelius Fudge.  I can't wait to she gets further in the series!)
  • Matilda - Smart little girl who finally stands up for herself and others.  Need I say more?
  • Otherwise Known as Sheila the Great - Smart girl, wild imagination. Are you sensing a pattern in Karenna's favorite heroines?
  • Charlotte's Web - Two appealing things: Smart female spider.  Pet pig, like her beloved Aunt Cathie.
  • Ameilia Bedelia books - She loves to she how Amelia Bedelia will get something wrong, there is plenty of potential for us to do character voices, plus lots of words she can read too.
  • Harold and the Purple Crayon - A little boy uses his purple crayon and his imagination to draw his reality.  What kid who spends all day at the art table wouldn't love this idea?
  • Dr. Seuss books - Her favorites include Green Eggs and Ham and Fox in Socks.


  • Harry Potter series - after Karenna finished The Sorcerer's Stone and moved on to Chamber of Secrets, Jude felt left out and actually requested we start reading the series to him.  I doubted a two-year-old would sit through a half-chapter, but here we are almost ready to move on to the next book.
  • Matilda - Jude loved the movie, and the book version was illustrated, so he loved sitting through this one.  In fact he carried it around as a security item for a while!
  • Yummy Yucky - Leslie Patricelli's book of opposites that provides an example of what you should eat one one page, and what you shouldn't on the opposite page.  The examples (burgers v. boogers, fish sticks v. fish food, blueberries v. blue crayons, eggs v. earwax, etc.) make Jude chuckle every time!
  • The Monster at the End of this Book - a classic where Sesame Street's Grover attempts the young reeader from turning pages (he ties them, nails them, mortars them, etc.) to prevent him/her from getting them any closer to the mosnter at the end, which turns out to be... Grover.  Jude likes defying Grover.
  • Dr. Suess books and P.D. Eastman books - his favorites were already discussed in "So To Children's Book Writers and a Sith Were Eating Cookies..."

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So Two Children's Book Writers and a Sith Were Eating Cookies...
Let me say that other than the J.K Rowling's Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, Roald Dahl's Matilda, and Leslie…