Friday, May 27, 2011

Book Review: BIG CAT, Little Kitty

BIG CAT, Little Kitty
By: Scotti Cohn   
Illustrated by: Susan Detwiler
Published by: Sylvan Dell Publishing   Date:  2011
ISBN:  32-page hardcover --  9781607181248
            32-page paperback -- 9781607181347
Price:   hardcover - $16.95
             Paperback - $8.95        
Ages:   4-9 years
Rating:  5 stars
Reviewed by: Kris Quinn Christopherson

Synopsis: Big cats are fierce predators that roam the world from the mountains to the deserts. How are these wild cats that hunt for their food the same as pet cats that might chase a mouse or a ball of yarn? How are they different? This book introduces children to the days of the week as they travel to seven different world habitats to meet the big cats, and then back home to compare and contrast the domestic cat’s behavior to that of its relative.

Overall thoughts: My family has cats on the brain right now, as our mama farm cat just had five kittens in our garage, but we would have enjoyed this book even without the new kitties. The illustrations are vivid and beautiful. The repetition is predictable, but in an excellent way that fully engages the young listener/reader. The included educational activities urge the reader to learn more about the cats and master the key points throughout the book. A lively and fun book!


Thursday, May 26, 2011

Book Review: When a Dragon Moves In

When a Dragon Moves In
Written by: Jodi Moore
Illustrated by: Howard McWilliam
Published by: Flashlight Press, May 1, 2011
ISBN: 978-0-979974-67-0
Price: $16.95
Ages: 4-8
Rating:  5 stars
Reviewed by: Roxanne Werner

Synopsis: A little boy and his family spend a relaxing day at the beach until a dragon moves into the boy’s sandcastle. At first, the boy enjoys his new friend. The dragon toasts marshmallows, flies a kite and scares away bullies. Things start to go wrong when the boy tries to convince his family that there is a dragon. No one believes him and he must take the blame for the dragon’s pranks.

Overall thoughts: Jodi Moore’s debut book is a whimsical look at family life and a little boy’s need for attention. The large red dragon, portrayed vividly by Howard McWilliam’s illustrations, is both mischievous and lovable. The reader is left to decide if the dragon is real or only a product of a boy’s vivid imagination. McWilliam’s artwork provides reasonable explanations for the dragon’s antics, if we choose to take them. But perhaps on a warm summer day, it’s more fun to let our imaginations run wild, and believe that if we build a perfect sandcastle, a dragon will move in. Moore has built the perfect story for a child’s imagination to move in.  

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Crazy Hats for a Fun and Funky Party

By Hazel M Gonzaga

Lacking for party ideas for kids or adults alike? Why not go for the wackiest and funniest theme that's happening right now? A crazy hat themed party will be unlike any other costume party you've been to. The idea of having this kind of party is to let people or guests show off their artistic and humorous side by creating (or looking out to buy) the most unique and funny hat and then wearing them to the festivity. This type of party would be full of fun and laughter. The kids will just adore the process of selecting which hat to wear, and they'll be having so much fun even before the party starts. Make no mistake though, adults love costume parties just as much as kids do and this kind of theme can be perfect for going away parties, for birthdays and retirement parties. They can definitely do this sort of goofy theme. One of the good things about this costume party is that there is no more need for elaborate party dress and accessories. You can just come as you are. Simply wear your funky hat and you will blend in just fine.

So to start with, invitations must be handed out a bit early so that your guests will have enough time to prepare. The invites must, of course, clearly indicate the theme of the party. To give some guests who don't have a clue, try putting a drawing or several images of what crazy hats are supposed to look like across the invitation. To make it more interesting, make it a contest. Inform the guests that you will be giving out prizes to the one who comes in with the funniest hat, the most unique, the craziest etc. Kids will swoon with excitement over this and adults will share moments of laughter and wonderful stories over this.

Next on the list would be to go all out funny and funky with the decorations. You can go and buy some large sized cups and paper plates. Find some nice colorful tablecloth or you can make one. Get a white cloth and then glue some pictures of funny hats on it or just draw some if you like to be more creative. Cover the area with bright and different colored balloons. For your exciting centerpiece, you can place a weird, wild and out of this world headgear. How's that for a truly inspiring party theme, eh?

When your guests start to arrive, be sure to take a photo of each one of them to remember this amazing event by. Crazy hats come in so many different designs, shapes and colors that there will be no shortage of ideas for this creation. Some could go for a cartoon character kind of head piece, food themed hats are also popular as well as animal head gears, umbrella hats and a whole lot of other designs. These can be totally funny, downright crazy, unique and weird. So the next time you throw a bash, be sure to consider going for this theme and watch as guests have the time of their lives and try to outdo each other in designs.

Hosting parties can be such an ordeal at times so why not let []crazy hats help you? By itself, it can amuse your guests and visitors. So go ahead and visit my site for more information on []crazy hats.

Article Source: [] Crazy Hats for a Fun and Funky Party

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Book Review: Where is Salami?

Where is Salami?
Donna J. Shepherd
Art by Jack Foster
Guardian Angel Publishing, Inc., 2011
ISBN 978-1-61633-148-1
Ages: 2-5
Rating: 4 stars
Reviewed by: Irene S. Roth

Synopsis:  This is a cute and funny book about siblings, Beth and her little brother who has way too many pets in the house. The pets scare her to death and she has a good reason to be scared because several of them get lost. So, she decides to hide until her brother finds them all and returns them to their various cages and places where they won't scare Beth any longer. Although by the time her little brother finds all the pets, he has a new problem.  

Overall Thoughts: This is a humorous picture e-book about siblings and how they get along with each other. Boys tend to enjoy having a lot of gory pets while girls don't like exotic pets. Girls like sweet, soft pets who purr and love them but not snakes and rats. Could her brother have too many pets? Beth sure thinks so! This book will appeal to kids of all ages. They will get a real kick out of it.

For more information about different books and products for kids for all ages and all occasions, please visit Irene’s inspiring books and products website just in time for the holidays at and Also, to read about self-esteem and self-confidence for teens, tweens and adolescents, please visit Irene’s adolescent website at:

Monday, May 23, 2011

How to Be the Best Parent Ever

By Irma Parone 

Can you imagine a bigger responsibility than raising children? I sure can't. The true goal, for any parent, is to raise a healthy and happy child. 

Before you enroll them in an Ivy League school, however, my strongest suggestion is that you lead them to happiness. How? By helping them experience a life of gratitude, appreciation and kindness. 

I have watched children that hit a point where they never seem satisfied, and surely are NOT kind. They expect more than they give, do not appreciate what they get and are just unhappy about life.

But do you really care? Do you think that the Ivy League credentials will make your child happy because they will have the best shot at getting that terrific job? Maybe not! Why? Because we all know at least a few people that are tremendously intelligent, yet can't hold a job. Or they may hold onto a job, but just don't appreciate it, or their life.

Start now. Whatever the age of the child, whatever your role is in that child's life, start helping them NOW. And guess what, YOU will become happier and more grateful too.

a) one gratitude journal (per person )
b) one (or more) child
c) one (or more) loving parent
d) 5 (or more) minutes at bedtime

a) Starting at the front of the journal, ask and then write anything your child was grateful for that day (you might need to help them at first, but as time goes on, they get better than the adults! If the child is old enough to write, and WANTS to write their own entries, go for it!)
b) Starting at the back of the book, working toward the front, write what your child did THAT DAY that was an act of kindness. Any little thing is fine. As time goes on, they will go out of their way to FIND ways to be kind.
c) No matter what they say or write, tell them how GREAT they did, and how proud you are  of them.

Don't forget
a. Talk about what YOU are grateful for, and how YOU found a way to be kind to someone.
b. As you see 'opportunities' for gratitude or kindness, suggest it! Even if it is for you! Ask your child if they think that baking a cake for your neighbor's birthday would be a kind thing to do. Maybe your child will help.

Good luck! Irma

My goal is to help Children worldwide, live a life of gratitude, appreciation and kindness through parents, other caregivers, teachers, doctors, etc.

Article Source: [] How to Be the Best Parent Ever

Sunday, May 22, 2011

Book Review: How to Talk to an Autistic Kid

How to Talk To an Autistic Kid

Author: Daniel Stefanski ( an autistic kid)

Free Spirit Publishing

43 pages.


This book offers an inside look into what an autistic child wishes others knew and understood. Autism can be in many forms but most forms involve some problems with communication or receiving communication from others.

Daniel is a teen who has autism and he eloquently has explained just what others need to know in order to communicate with kids with autism. He not only gives tips on how to talk to kids with autism, he clearly shows the reader what a child with autism needs from others.

This book will give the reader the tools needed to communicate and talk to a child with autism. It is funny, upbeat, and honest. The book will not only help teachers and peers, but relatives and those who only occassionally come in contact with those with autism.

 The book is truly an inspirational answer for those who just don't know how to act or what to say to those kids who are "different" The book will ease your fears and teach you something about what goes on inside the mind of an autistic child from an autistic child.. what better place to start with understanding and friendship?

Daniel will be at the Book Expo America 2011 to sign copies of his book. If you are there, stop by to chat with Daniel. This young author has much to say.

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Keeping Active Kids Hydrated

As you probably already know, exercise is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle, but when your kids are running around, it's just as important for them to stay hydrated! Make sure you know these tips and tricks for encouraging kids to stay hydrated.

As you probably already know, exercise is an important part of leading a healthy lifestyle, but when your kids are running around, it's just as important for them to stay hydrated!

Did you know that your body is approximately 60 percent water? In fact, water is arguably one of the most valuable resources on Earth. Everything from cacti to kittens need it to live and your kiddos are no exception. When exercising, the American Academy of Pediatrics suggests school-aged children should drink 4 to 8 ounces of water every 15 minutes. 

However, when kids are on the go, it's sometimes hard to get them to stop, even long enough to get a drink. The best way to keep kids hydrated is to remind them to keep drinking water. Here four tips and tricks for encouraging kids stay hydrated:

1. Make A Water Bottle Part of Your Workout Gear
You wouldn't go to hockey practice without a stick or a football game without pads, why would you leave the house without a bottle of water? Teach kids to think of a plastic water bottle as part of their essential sports gear.

2. Count It Out!
Have kids count to eight while taking eight big gulps of water. For small children eight big gulps ends up being somewhere between 4 and 8 ounces of water!

3. Make it Sweet
Would your kids rather drink something sugary? Try naturally sweetening water with a squeeze of lemon or lime or a piece of frozen fruit.

4. Chow Down!
Fruit like watermelon, peaches and grapes are great playtime snacks. They're not only water-packed (many contain 70 - 95 percent water), but they're a naturally sweet treat! 

Remind your kids: Active play is fun, but being dehydrated isn't. Dehydration can make you feel fatigued, give you a headache and cause you to have a rapid heart rate. Severe enough dehydration could even land you in the hospital!

While it's not necessarily easy to get kids to drink water, it's pretty easy to spot dehydration in children. Crying without tears and dark circles under the eyes are two signs that a child might be dehydrated. If your kids seem sleepy and lethargic or irritable and fussy, that might also mean that they are dehydrated. In other words, not only is being dehydrated not fun for kids, but dealing with even a moderately dehydrated kid is no fun for parents either!

So stay hydrated. It's the best way to feel good while you play!

Staying physically active is an important part of maintaining a healthy lifestyle and encouraging kids to exercise is one of the best ways to help []combat childhood obesity. For more articles about how parents and communities can help encourage kids to get up and get active visit []

Article Source: [] Keeping Active Kids Hydrated


*Stories for Children Publishing, LLC. (SFC) and its divisions do not receive any compensation for product reviews beyond a sample and/or limited access to a paid website. SFC donates all books sent for review to a charitable organization. SFC may do a contest or giveaway of samples we receive.