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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids

Thanksgiving is coming and so are my in-laws. The horror! Here are some book suggestions in case you want to hide away from crazy relatives and dive into another world that doesn’t involve an uppity mother-in-law criticizing the most trivial shit. Good luck on the day we give thanks and have to do this again next year with family that drives us crazy.

Happy Thanksgiving. The news seems to be more grim than usual and I know it’s been tough on everyone, no matter where you live. Much love!


The Winter People – Strange things are going on in West Hall, Vermont but what is it? This book goes back and forth from present day to 1908. Make sure to leave the lights on while you’re reading. Great book!


Me Before You – This book is beautiful and I fell in love with it right away. Louisa takes on a much-needed job with a quadriplegic, Will Traynor, and it is a really fantastic read.



How Groundhog’s Garden Grew – This is an adorable book about a groundhog eating food from other gardens. His friends point out that it’s not nice to help himself to other’s food so he gets help making his own garden. Ages 3-7.


Boy + Bot – This is a cute story about the friendship about a boy and a robot. Ages 2-6


The Ladybug Girl At The Beach – If only it was still beach weather! This was the first book in the ladybug girl series that we read. Lulu is going to the beach for the first time and she has mixed feeling about it. This is a great book that shows kids that each person has their own way of confronting their fears. Ages 3-6.


P. Zonka Lays An Egg – This has already gone on the hummingbird’s Christmas list because of the gorgeous illustrations and the wonderful message in the book. P. Zonka isn’t like other chickens and takes her time to enjoy the beauty around her, unlike the chickens who are laying a lot of eggs. Ages 3-8.


My Leaf Book – My 6 year-old loves collecting leaves, sticks, rocks, and everything else so she loves this book about leaves. It shows kids some of the differences of leaves and makes it fun. Ages 3-6.


Butterfly Park – A little girl moves to a new town and finds a butterfly park without any butterflies. Soon, with the help of the townspeople, everyone comes together to make a special park. Ages 3-7.

*Are You That Somebody

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Book Suggestions For Adults And Kids

I’m finally blowing the dust off this here blog and getting back in the habit of posting. All of the large gaps I’ve been having on here is for several reasons but one is I’ve been putting together a book of essays I’ve written over the years that I’d like to self-publish it. The reason I’m even telling you this is now I have to finish it. No excuses! I’ve also been reading more than ever, if such a thing is even possible.

Here are some books that the hummingbird and I have really liked. I hope you find a few that you’ll enjoy just as much.

Sidenote: I haven’t had any caffeine today and my brain is pissed. So, it’s paying me back by not letting me form proper sentences. For all I know, this whole post might be gibberish. Okay, more gibberish-y than usual.


The Light Between Oceans – Stop everything you’re doing and get this book right this second! I read this months ago and I still think about it most days. I love that kind of impact a book or movie has on me. Tom, a lighthouse keeper, and his wife Isabel have gone through the grief of miscarriages and a stillbirth.

Soon after, a boat comes up onto the shore with a crying infant and a dead man. I’ll leave it there because you should just read this beautifully written book. And make sure to get out the tissues. I was doing the ugliest of ugly cries while reading the last bit of the book.


You – This book is creepy as fuck.


The Girl On The Train – This book was better than I was expecting. I’m pretty tired of hearing that this book or that book is the next “Gone Girl”. Each book has its own uniqueness so saying this book is the new hot at the moment style does nothing for me. Now, get off my lawn you damn youngsters!

Rachel takes the same train every day and stops at a signal by a building with a couple that she becomes infatuated with. After noticing some things that seem off to her about the man and woman, she takes it upon herself to investigate. I actually liked this book better than the one it was compared to.


Mrs. Kennedy And Me – Clint Hill was the Secret Service Agent that was on Mrs. Kennedy’s detail and was the one who jumped onto the presidential limousine right after President Kennedy was shot in Dallas. Mr. Hill recounts his 4 years with Jackie and the Kennedy family.

I have to say with everything I’ve heard about the President and his family, Clint Hill is a true gentleman in recalling his days with the Kennedy clan, particularly the First Lady. While I love my gossip rag reading on the weekends, I love that this former agent showed class and restraint with what he revealed and what he kept to himself but that doesn’t take away from it being a pretty fascinating read.

Some Scary Ass Books About Scientology – Okay, I rarely say y’all but oh my god, ya’ll. This shit is scary. I’ve read three books about Scientology in a row and there was no way in hell I could sum it up in a few sentences so it’s getting its own post.


For the kids…


The Bumpy Little Pumpkin – My 6 year-old absolutely loves this book. We checked it out from the library a few weeks ago and have already read this several times. Little Nell gets to pick a pumpkin and decides on a little, bumpy one but her older sisters tease her about it and tell her to pick a better one.

She ends up showing that there’s beauty in everything, no matter the shape and size. Good for Little Nell. This book prompted my daughter to gain quite a collection of bumpy and imperfect pumpkins that I found very sweet. Ages preschool to 6.


This Is Not My Hat – A small fish steals a hat from a big fish and thinks he’ll be able to outsmart him. This is a cute book and the hummingbird said she found it hilarious. Ages preschool to 6.


A Treasury Of Curious George – I bought this book when the hummingbird was about 3 years-old. I needed a book to read to her while we were moving and in a hotel. This ended up becoming one of the most read books of her young library. While she doesn’t have us read it constantly like she used to, she still likes reading this one from time to time.

It’s gotten so much wear from the 8 stories in the book that we have read many times, over and over and over again. I think this would be a perfect baby shower gift or for a young child’s birthday. Ages newborn to 150.


One Grain Of Rice – A very clever girl named Rani uses her smarts to pull one over on the Raja. Her town is going hungry but the greedy Raja won’t give to those in need so the young girl comes up with a plan that will help her town in its time of need. I think this is such a gorgeously illustrated book with a strong female character and I love that there is math involved and used in a way to make it fun.

When I read this book to the bird, the higher the numbers get, the more I over exaggerate what a mouthful it is to say such high numbers, which the hummingbird finds funny and looks forward to. Rani earns one grain of rice that doubles each day for 30 days and my daughter is entertained by not only learning numbers and the way math works but also about the message this book has about greed and kindness. I highly suggest this book and I’m definitely putting it on my daughter’s Christmas wish list. Ages preschool to 8.

*James Bay

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Kindergarten Book Suggestions

Here are just a few of the books the little hummingbird has been reading in her Kindergarten class that she loves. Her teacher also encourages the kids to look for wordless books, as that is supposed to help develop their reading. The bird’s teacher also sends home small beginner books. With those, we first go through the book and ask the hummingbird what she sees in the illustrations.

Then we go back to the beginning and she seems to have a better understanding of the words we help her read from the book. They are very simple sentences made easier by already knowing what people are doing on each page. We were also guided to a blog called The Book Diaries. It has fabulous book suggestions of all kinds for kids.

If you may be doing any last minute shopping, these book suggestions would be a hit for kids ages 3-8.

dog-loves-books1Dog Loves Books – A dog loves books so much that he opens up his own bookstore. Unfortunately, there weren’t any customes that came in for books. They would come in to ask for directions or tea. He didn’t mind it much though as it gave him time to dive into stories about dinosaurs and space aliens. But will he eventually get a customer that needs a book? For ages 3-7.

510H4-12bOLI Like To Be Little – This is a fabulous story about a mom and daughter who have discussions about why the little girl likes being little. Such as skip when happy and sit under the dining room table. But parent don’t do things like that which is why the girl likes being little. This book was a hit in our house and we read it all the time. For ages 4-8.

51Ggj6r9PyL._SX258_BO1,204,203,200_Otto The Book Bear – When this book is left behind by his former family, Otto comes to life and off the pages in search of a new home. Great for ages 3-8.

sea-of-dreams-cover-imageThe Sea Of Dreams – This wordless book is definitely one of our favorites. The illustrations are lovely and each time we read it together, we can make the story serious or silly. It’s great for ages 3-7.

dl20120419509249387849Are You My Mother? – The were reading this a lot in the bird’s Kindergarten class and even made their own books of the story to take home. A baby bird goes in search of her mother that she lost. It’s a simple story that my daughter now knows by heart. For ages 3-7.


Miss Lina’s Ballerinas – Miss Lina’s Ballerinas start with eight dancers who dance in two rows of four. But when a new student arrives, it throws the dancers in chaos. They learn to make it work by making a new dancing arrangement. The illustrations are light and whimsical. Great for ages 3-6.

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Book Review: Bittersweet


This is my first review for Blogging For Books and I picked Bittersweet by Miranda Beverly-Whittmore.

Mabel Dagmar is a scholarship student at an East Coast college and her roomate Genevra “Ev” Winslow is her wealthy roommate who invites her to spend the summer in Vermont. There are several cottages on the Winslow estate and Mabel stays in the cottage, Bittersweet, that Ev has been given.

The summer starts idyllic with elegant parties, swimming, and lazy days of wandering on the grounds. Soon, Mabel starts to see cracks in what seems like a fairy-tale. An eccentric aunt in the family asks Mabel for help in uncovering secrets in the esteemed Winslow family, and directs her to papers and a journal to investigate.

During her time there, Mabel gets involved in an unexpected romance and can see herself settling into living the high life. But gradually with the discoveries she makes, she sees that while on the outside the Winslow family appears picture perfect, on the inside there are dark secrets and violence in the Winslow past.

The book can be slow at times but was enjoyable with beautiful prose and wonderful descriptions of the characters and the setting in Vermont. Bittersweet is a good mix of mystery and romance.

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Children’s Book Reviews: Elizabeth, Queen Of The Seas And My Pet Book


Elizabeth, Queen Of The Seas – This is a very sweet story of a real-life elephant seal from Christchurch, New Zealand. Elizabeth has made her home in the Avon River but soon she goes onto the two-lane road near the river. Worried citizens decide to move her far out to sea but Elizabeth has other ideas and comes back.

Each time volunteers take her further out to sea, the elephant seal comes back to Christchurch where she loves to lie, stretch, and sleep on the two-lane road. The locals realize this lovely seal, Elizabeth, will always come back and becomes a celebrity of sorts. The town even puts up a sign, “Slow. Elephant Seal Crossing” near her favorite place to sleep.

In the back of the book is information about elephant seals, along with a photo of Elizabeth lying on the road in Christchurch. This book is for ages 4-8 and is a great book for animal lovers.

There was once a lovely elephant seal who lived in the city. Most elephant seals live in the ocean, in the saltwater.

They sleep on rocky coasts and lie along sandy beaches. But this seal was different.


My Pet Book – In my pet book, a little boy would love to have a pet but has allergies. He decides that a book would make a perfect pet. He goes to a bookstore to find a pet book and a red hardcover book catches his eye. He loves taking his book out for walks on a leash and never has to worry about it shedding or even picking up poop.

Not only does his red pet book make a perfect pet, it also has wonderful tales inside that take the little boy to all kinds of places.

One day, after returning home from school, the little boy goes to greet his pet book and finds that his beloved pet is gone! He looks everywhere and the housekeeper realizes she made a big mistake. While cleaning up, she collected several things to donate to charity. The two race off to track down the pet book can’t find it anywhere.

They put their heads together to think of where a scared pet book would hide and he finds him in a little nook. Arriving home tired from the day, he takes his pet book up to his room and sleeps soundly with his beloved pet in his arms.

This book is for ages 4-7 and has a wonderful rhythm to it. I love reading this to the little hummingbird.

The boy’s mom gently asked him how a book could bring such joy.

“It’s cuz every book’s a friend!” said the yawning little boy.

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Harvest Snaps Review

I never tried Harvest Snaps before so when the box came, my family and I dived in. These delicious snacks are gluten-free, high in fiber, and best yet, low in fat since they’re baked.




Harvest Snaps have flavors for any kind of tastes; Lightly Salted, Black Pepper, Tomato Basil, Onion Thyme, and my favorites, Wasabi Ranch and Caesar.

They are so light and crispy and very addicting. Out of the six bags we received, two of them were gone within a few days. And yes, both of those bags were mostly devoured by me.

I love giving them to my 5 year-old for a snack once she comes home from school. My husband keeps a bag at work in his office, and I love munching on them for a guilt free nighttime snack.

Compared to the chips we usually eat, these snapea crisps are a healthier option and lower in sodium. Next time you go to the store, pick up a bag. You won’t be disappointed. I highly recommend Wasabi Ranch and Caesar.


Lunchspiration is a great place to give you lunch ideas: Lunchspiration.

To find out more about Harvest Snaps, check them out here: Harvest Snaps.

This post was created in partnership with Harvest Snaps. I have been compensated for this post. However, all thoughts and opinions are my own.

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Review: Zazoo Photo Clock

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My 4 year-old has been asking more questions about days of the week and the time, trying to make sense of it. She’ll ask what day is tomorrow? When is ballet? Do I go to school tomorrow? When is bedtime? etc.

My husband was looking into getting her a clock that helped her understand time and it was like somebody knew because soon after the hunt was on, I was contacted by Zazoo to review one of their clocks.


This clock is just what the hummingbird needed.

ZAZOO Photo Clock helps kids and parents get more sleep. It’s an innovative sleep solution for children who wake too early or do not stay in bed all night. Parents can use the pre-programmed images or personalized options set to an alarm time, and the screen will give children visual cues when it’s time to get out of bed. The photo clock grows with your child with features including a rotating photo frame, music, audio book, alarm clock, and more.

I told my daughter that she was getting a big girl clock and every day she would ask if it had come yet. It arrived quickly and we were both excited. I thought the clock was the coolest thing.

The clock shows the sun during the day and the moon at night so your child can learn the difference. You can also program it to have your child’s name on the clock. I love that my 4 year-old can now tell when it’s time to get up on her own. Although thta doesn’t always mean she waits to storn our room.


We love the Zazoo photo clock and I’m certain you will too. The holidays are coming up and this would make a great gift for our little hummingbirds who like to rise and shine too early.

*I received a photo clock to review but the opinions expressed are my own.

**Cyndi Lauper, of course

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