Wednesday, November 29, 2017


I 'think' we just discovered a good way to tell a linking verb complement - adjective (aka predicate adjective) apart from an action verb at the end of a sentence.

Action verbs have direct objects and indirect objects.
The first sentence my kiddo stumbled over today:
Our team had been winning
Depending on where winning comes in the sentence it can be an adjective.  It can also be an action - because you can do that - you can win.  So try asking yourself can I place a direct object after it and the sentence will still make sense?
Let's try it...
Our team had been winning the game.  Yep, it's an action verb.

Another one my kiddo stumbled over today:
My brother should be excited.
It ends in -ed, which forms the past tense of many, many verb words right?!  But it also describes the let's try it and see if it can receive a direct object.
My brother should be excited the party.  Nope.  It's describing how he feels, it is an adjective.

Have you heard of Nathan Pacheco?  Oh man, he is awesome.

I am excited to get my hands on this book :

and leaving you with a cutie-patootie picture

Wednesday, November 22, 2017

Favorite Audio Books, Read Alouds, Books, and Movies from this past year

This year has been a fantastic book year.

We've really, really dug into Audible and reveled in the enjoyment of having a great book read to you.

We've piled onto the couch or spread out over floors listening as I read aloud, we have been sitting in the car waiting on something or someone when I pulled out our latest book and dug right in, using what time we have to get lost in a story.

I have read my books while folding laundry, stirring spaghetti sauce, waiting on kids to finish their assignments, waiting in waiting rooms, and standing outside while waiting for our dogs to do their business...basically, anywhere I could squeeze a few minutes of uninterrupted semi-silence into.

It is hard to list all the stories that we have read this year, so I decided to choose (with lots of help from my kids) the books we are still talking about.  These stories, some from January 2017, still find their way into their daily play and/or conversations.

My favorite audio books:
Harry Potter read by Jim Dale.  I absolutely love, love, love Jim Dale's voice.
Peter and the Starcatchers also read by Jim Dale
North and South read by Kate Petrie
Edenbrooke read by Emily Elizabeth Hamilton
Hunger Games trilogy read by Carolyn McCormick

Books I have read to myself:
Daring to Hope by Katie Davis Majors
First Hostage, Third Target, Without Warning  by Joel Rosenberg
Deeper Waters by Denise Hughes
Sacred Mundane by Kari Patterson
Curate of Glaston by George MacDonald (still reading)
Silence by Shusako Endo
several titles by Jenny B Jones

My kids' favorites:
Tuesdays at the Castle series (aka Castle Glower series).  You HAVE to read or listen to this series - it is so enchanting and wonderful.  This series carried us along endless stretches of interstate, in October and November.
Bunnicula series read by Victor Garber
Mrs. Frisby and the Rats of Nimh
Caddie Woodlawn
The Incorrigible Children of Ashton Place (in the middle of this one)
Jesus Storybook Bible
Thoughts to Make your Hearts Sing
Andrew Clements' books (too many to list)
Mysterious Benedict Society
The Reluctant Dragon

A Long Walk to Water
Anne of Green Gables (OK so I am waaaaaaaaaaay more excited than they are about this - but I LOVE LOVE LOVE Anne of Green Gables!)
Harriet the Spy
Island of the Blue Dolphins (favorite!)
The Bronze Bow (favorite)
George Frederic Handel (the sower series)
Gladys Alward (Christian Heroes Now and Then) - favorite, favorite, favorite
Where the Red Fern Grows (reading now)
Twenty and Ten
The Years of Miss Agnes
Clementine (entire series)
Stuart Little (did not like how this ended :(, wanted more from the author )
Tom Sawyer (kids did NOT like this read aloud, but I loved reading it because it brought back memories of my teacher reading this aloud to me)
Tale of Despereaux
Because of the Winn Dixie (again - favorite)
Door in the Wall
Brambly Hedge series
Inside Out and Back Again (I thought this was interesting, kids did not like it)
I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew by Dr. Seuss
Tree in the Trail Holling C Holling 
Pilgrim's Progress (Christian's story)
In Grandma's Attic series

Movies :
Cars 3
Epic (dreamworks cartoon)
Descendants 2
Country Wedding
Every Christmas Has a Story
My Christmas Dream
Journey Back to Christmas (LOVE LOVE LOVE Hallmark holiday movies...well most of them)
The Grizzly Adams series
Against the Wild 1 & 2
Swallows and Amazons
My Little Pony season 7
Scales Mermaids are Real
The Lost Medallion
Dolphin Tale 1 & 2
Mom's Night Out (favorite, favorite, favorite)
War Room
Voyage of Dawn Treader
Lego Elves
How to Train Your Dragon movies and series
Barbie Dolphin Magic
Smurfs the Lost Village

I am ending this post with the feeling that I have forgotten one or more important books so I will add any titles as I remember them.

Monday, November 20, 2017

my kids and I

just got home from our second trip to my home state of KY, in as many months.  My husband had to stay home and hold down the fort of our zoo and his job.  I always appreciate my husband, but even more so after being gone and being the only parent available in any and all situations.  In the beginning of our parenting days (for approximately the first four and a half years) he traveled constantly.  I had a toddler, then a toddler and a newborn, and then a pre-schooler, a toddler, and was pregnant while he was gone Sunday through Friday, as well as working a second job on Saturdays.

Those were long, hard, lonely years.

I realized then that this parenting gig was so hard, made so much harder when there was one parent pulling the load at home.

All the single parents out there?

You are awesome!

I am in awe of what God has called you to, praying for you to walk close to Him - that He places people in your path that will cheer you on and help you shoulder each day.

I could sit here all day and tell you how awesome my husband is, the little and big things that he does every single day to make my day easier.  For example just today, someone at work needed to switch on-call weekends and he called to make sure the timing worked for me before agreeing to anything.  When I got home this weekend after being gone for a couple of weeks I noticed that some of our clocks hadn't been set back.  I asked my husband about this and he said, 'I wanted to keep a few clocks an hour ahead so I that I always knew what time it was where you were'.

My kids and I came home a week earlier than we planned because my kids came down with a yucky tummy bug.  Anytime they can't keep their meds down, I drop whatever I am doing and make plans to get home as quickly as possible, because I know that some ugly days are headed our way.

I so much appreciate my husband taking care of home, pets, and not complaining when I bought a few too many hot chocolates while traveling.  It was so great to see my family, to help them out, and to know that he was home waiting patiently for us to return.