Sunday, February 27, 2011

Eastside Retreat 2011

I am blessed to be in a community
of faith called Eastside Church of Christ.
This weekend, we had our annual
Ladies' Retreat.
We spent time praising God together.
We played games.
We got to know each other better.
Michelle did an amazing job of organizing the event.
On Friday night we thought about how our lives are like
a quilt and we made a quilt to hang on the wall.
On the quilt we wrote our hopes for the retreat.
A great number of women hoped for new or deeper
relationships and friendships.
We ate together.
I felt so blessed to be asked to speak.
Notice the words on the screen taken
from the book of Esther.
We discussed how we are each
gifted by God to serve the people
we come in contact with each day.

What a great weekend we had together!

Thank you Vanessa Leonard for the photos!

Friday, February 25, 2011

Spring Fever

I'm getting spring fever.
How about you?

Monday, February 14, 2011

A Very Hungry Caterpillar and a Very Precious Boy

Most of you are probably familiar with
Eric Carle's priceless book
The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
I recently send David the book and the caterpillar.
His mom says they are big hits.

Do you know about Kohl's Cares for Kids?
Kohl's sells wonderful children's books and
matching stuffed animals for $5.00 each
(an amazing price) and the proceeds
go to organizations that help children.
I'm not sure where all the money goes, but
I know that in Houston, Texas it goes
the to very prestigious Texas Children's Hospital.

A good reason to support Kohl's.

Happy Shopping and Happy Reading!

book cover courtesy of Follett.com
photo courtesy of David's mom

Sunday, February 13, 2011

Book Review Out of My Mind by Sharon Draper

Book Courtesy of Goodreads

I have a confession to make.
Most of the books I read, I forget soon
after reading them.
Not this book!!!
It has been two days since I finished it
and I can still remember the plot and
more importantly the name of the main character--
Melody.

This is an amazing book that should be
required reading or all elementary and middle school
children WITH their parents.

If you read it, I promise, its message will stay with you
for a long, long time.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Snow Ice Cream=Yummy!

Somewhere in the deep recesses of my memory,
I remember my Grandma Aven making
snow ice cream with my siblings and me.
That has been many years ago and this is
the first time that I have ever tried it myself.
Since Houston doesn't offer many opportunities for
gathering the main ingredient,
I didn't have a recipe, so I Googled
"Snow Ice Cream" to find a good one.
Paula Deen actually had a recipe.

8 cups of snow
Her recipe didn't say clean snow, but mine was very clean.
1 can sweetened, condensed milk
I used the WalMart Great Value variety
1 teaspoon vanilla
Thank you Aunt Terry for introducing
me to Watkins Vanilla many years ago.
Of course it will taste better if the mixing spoons are
the "love" variety.
The first thing every superhero does when he is
cooking is to wash his hands.
Step 2: Taste the main ingredient to see if it
is as pure as the driven snow.
Help Nana pour the snow in the bowl.
Don't you just love his hand on my arm?
I do.
Pour in the milk.
After adding vanilla, mix it all together.
Mix till creamy.
Eat immediately before it has a chance to melt.
The other two boys in the young Gibson
family liked it as well.

For those observant people in the audience,
yes I know that we were basically eating
Sweetened Condensed Milk straight!
What a delightful way to ruin a diet!

Hope you are enjoying this cold weather!

Saturday, February 5, 2011

Children's Lit Book Reviews Tuesday and The Mouse and the Motorcycle

Yes, I usually review new books, but there is
a special reason that I am reviewing these
two "old" books today.
Tuesday by David Weisner is a good book,
well actually probably a great book since it won
the coveted Caldecott Medal in 1991.
But I have never cared for the book very much.
I gravitate toward the books with messages, books
that I can relate to and I just have trouble
relating to frogs flying through the air on lilly pads.
That is, until, Thursday of this week.
I pulled this book from my bookshelf
to read to Caleb. I thought he might enjoy it
since he is into humor these days and this
almost wordless book has great potential for humor
Caleb LOVED it!
Caleb and Nana laughed uproariously as
we read the book over and over and over again!
The lesson for Nana: Books are very personal things.
Just because you love it, doesn't mean everyone will love it.
And just because you don't like it, well.......read it
to your kids and grandkids anyway.
It just might become
a family favorite.
I got a phone call from Caleb (and his daddy) the other night!
Caleb was so excited and all I could hear understand through
all the excitement in his voice was "motorcycle".
I said, "You rode a motorcycle???"
thinking in my head, I am going to kill his daddy
for letting a 4 year old ride a motorcycle.
Jeremy must have read my mind because
he very quickly got on the phone and explained
that he and Caleb had just read the first 3 chapters of
Caleb's very FIRST chapter book.
I couldn't help remembering when I had read
The Mouse and the Motorcycle by Beverly Cleary
to Kelly and Jeremy when they were little
(though not as little as Caleb).
What wonderful family traditions books can be.
HAPPY READING!!!
book titles courtesy of Follett.org

Friday, February 4, 2011

Book Recommendation Moon Over Manifest

Moon Over Manifest
Moon Over Manifest is this year's Newbery Medal Winner.
Like many Newbery winners, children aren't likely to read this
historical fiction book on their own.
They will need a parent or teacher to read it
to them.
Abilene Tucker (don't you just love that name?)
is searching for many things and
finds them in the small town
of Manifest, Kansas.
You will fall in love with spunky Abilene
and the other colorful characters she meets
in Manifest.
This is a book for older elementary and middle school readers.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Wonder Woman vs. Frog Girl

Much to Aunt Kim's Delight and to
Nana's Dismay, Superhero Caleb
pronounced
Aunt Kim Wonder Woman
and
Nana Frog Girl!
I'll NEVER live that one down with my baby sister!