21 January 2009

shout out for eco books!

As a parent, I am always searching for ways to reinforce green values with my children. (I know some of it is sinking in because the other day I heard Fiona telling "Gigi" (my mother) how we don't leave on lights because it's "not kind to the Earth".)

Fortunately, the green movement is picking up speed and you are beginning to see green products, eco-themed books, and even reusuable shopping bags almost everywhere. Whilst trying to find environmentally friendly gifts for my girls, I was delighted to discover a series of books over the holidays.

Little Green Books are produced by the literary group Simon & Schuster. The "green books for green readers" are not only contain green themes, the books truly practice what they preach, so to speak. Books are:

* made from 100% postconsumer waste recycled paper
* printed with 100% vegetable-based ink
* Forest Stewardship Council certified (responsible use of forest resources)

For Christmas, I purchased Little Panda for Matilda from Target. Little Panda is a sweet, simple, "board" book for infants. It cloth pages tell the story of a panda who loves to eat bamboo, play with his friend, Little Monkey, and make funny faces. The cover is made with recycled fleece and is soft enough to find its way into baby's mouth. Tilly just loves cuddling the book and the black and white panda keeps her attention.

I was delighted to find today that Little Green books has a series of books for older children as well. Whilst grabbing a few things at Kroger, I came across The Adventures of a Plastic Bottle.

From the website, this book is "told from the point of view of a free-spirited plastic bottle, kids can share in the daily experiences and inner thoughts of the bottle through his personal journal." Lately Fiona has really been excited about learning recycling and really enjoys helping us sort the items in our recycling bin. I thought the book would be a perfect "surprise/treat" for her.

She was thrilled when I gave it to her! We had to read it 3 times in row. I was afraid that the technical jargon might be a little over her head (the book is for children ages 4-8) but the book tells the "science" behind recycling in a very whimsical way. She loved learning the new words which we were able to reinforce with the glossary from the back.

Not only are the books a valuable resource, the SimonLittleGreen.com website has fantastic tips, activities and games for children, teachers, and parents. I absolutely love the green activity sheet and will probably use some of the games for Fiona's birthday in April.

According to the website the books may be found in most major bookstores but as I said earlier, I found the girls' books in major retail chains. Every parent who wants to raise their child/ren 'green' will love these books!

20 January 2009

yes we did!

what a joyous, monumental day!

09 January 2009

parting is such sweet sorrow :(

Happy belated New Year! The Stapletons had a good New Year despite several bouts of illness. Fiona caught a cold and passed it on to her sister. Poor Tilly ended up with RSV - yeck! Thank goodness she avoided a hospital stay and just ended up a bit listless with a very chesty, congested cough.

In the New Year, Marcus and I have vowed to get back to the days of entertaining. We used to have friends over loads before the kids but it seems over the last few years, our lives have changed and our soirees became few and far between. So it was good to get out and socialize this evening.

Mrs. Tracy - the guest of honor!

Tonight Marcus watched Tilly so that Fiona and I (as he dubbed us, the "party girls") could attend a going away party for one of our favourite teachers at Fiona's school. It was with mixed emotions that we attended the gathering. On one hand, we were excited to be spending time with Mrs. Tracy and some of the other nice families at Goddard and yet, the occasion - Tracy's leaving - was very hard for us to accept.

Mrs. Tracy was Fiona's teacher in her previous class. Her sweet nature, positive outlook, and nurturing soul always lit up the room. Under her direction, Fiona truly thrived and grew. It was truly an honor to be included in her send off!

It was nice to be able to chat and get to know some of the other families better as well. We are fortunate that so many fascinating families attend Goddard. Unfortunately, with the craziness of pick up and drop off, we aren't always able to visit properly. Tonight was a great opportunity to mix and mingle. Of course, the kids got along smashingly!

We are thankful for Mrs. Tracy and for the impact she has had on our family. We will truly miss her but are glad that she is just going to North Carolina. We will see her again!

We love Mr. Chad!!

Lisa and little Charley

Nicolas and Ian being SUCH sweet boys!

Fiona and Anabel take a ride