Tuesday, October 31, 2017

My Favorite Spooky Stories

If I even get a glimpse of a scary book cover, I get nightmares.

I'm a baby about spooky stories.

When you are a school librarian, you learn fast that children love spooky stories.

I feel compelled to share spooky stories in the library every year.

Here are some I read in my elementary school library.

Level of Spookiness: 1
Children feel powerful when they can make a big, green monster go away.

Level of Spookiness: 2
Lots of spooky things pop out of the pages of this book.

Level of Spookiness: 3
This little old lady isn't scared of spooky things, so children feel braver, too.

Level of Spookiness: 4
This one is brand new. It's by the author/illustrator team that brought us Creepy Carrots.
It was a huge hit with my primary students last week.

Level of Spookiness: 5
The Viper is really an extended joke. Poor Peggy! The phone keeps ringing,
and it's always the Viper, reminding her that he will be coming soon.
Teachers love the story because it brings in time concepts and the dictionary.
Kids love it because it takes some thinking to figure out just who the Viper really is.

Level of Spookiness: 6
La Llorona is an old ghost story told along the Texas border. 
I especially love it because it is in English and Spanish.

Level of Spookiness: 7
This is the scariest I get with my primary school students.
Believe you me, it is scary.
I always warn them not to read Chapter 4, The Girl with the Green Ribbon.
Of course, it is the first chapter they go to when they check it out.

Level of Spookiness: 8
When I was in fifth grade, librarian Catherine Munson Foster came to my elementary school and told local ghost stories. The most powerful one of all, for me, was the ghost of Brit Bailey. He haunted, according to legend, a spot just down the highway from where I lived. I love to share this story with my students because it has a local connection.

Level of Spookiness: 9
I got this book in a Scholastic book order in elementary school. I took it along on a Girl Scout campout and read the stories aloud. We were some scared Girl Scouts.
I have shared some of the stories with my fifth and sixth graders. These were terrifying.

Level of Spookiness: 10
This is about as scary as it gets at an elementary school. This book and its two sequels has been on dozens of banned book lists. The stories are very, very scary and the illustrations are scary, too.
I've found even sixth graders are spooked by these.


Do you have any scary stories you read with students? I hope you will share them with me!



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists.
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Sunday, October 29, 2017

And Then It Hit....

It was a week of helping my daughter-in-law at the farmer's market...setting up the book fair...running the book fair...planning for Literacy Night...approving publishers' nominations for the Fiction Picture Book and Board Book categories of the Cybils...a huge surge of nominations coming in at the end, pushing us over 350 nominations...hosting Literacy Night....

...and then it hit...

There I was at Literacy Night, greeting parents and students, helping them find books at the Book Fair, dressed as my favorite book character, Fancy Nancy, and---BOOM!---I was overcome with a huge wave of nausea. I spent the rest of the evening in the (unwanted) company of a stomach bug.

I didn't feel so fancy anymore.

I stayed home from work on Friday. Folks, this is the first time since I started working in 1973 that I called in sick. How bad did I feel? I had three packages of books that arrived in the mail, and I didn't even open them. I slept most of the day.

Happily, I woke up Saturday and felt much, much better. Happily so, as Saturday is my granddaughter's second birthday party. 

As you might expect, I didn't finish reading anything this week. 

I did get a lot of new books in:





Next week will be a double whammy: my birthday and the Texas Book Festival! Hurray!


What is the Sunday SalonImagine some university library's vast reading room. It's filled with people--students and faculty and strangers who've wandered in. They're seated at great oaken desks, books piled all around them,and they're all feverishly reading and jotting notes in their leather-bound journals as they go. Later they'll mill around the open dictionaries and compare their thoughts on the afternoon's literary intake....That's what happens at the Sunday Salon, except it's all virtual. Every Sunday the bloggers participating in that week's Salon get together--at their separate desks, in their own particular time zones--and read. And blog about their reading. And comment on one another's blogs. Think of it as an informal, weekly, mini read-a-thon, an excuse to put aside one's earthly responsibilities and fall into a good book. Click here to join the Salon.

The Sunday Post is a meme hosted by Kimba at Caffeinated Book Reviewer. It's a chance to share news and recap the past week.

Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at The Printed Page. We share books that we found in our mailboxes last week. 
 It is now being hosted here.

Stacking the Shelves is a meme hosted by Tynga's Reviews in which you can share the books you've acquired.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is where we share what we read this past week, what we hope to read this week…. and anything in between!  This is a great way to plan out your reading week and see what others are currently reading as well… you never know where that next “must read” book will come from! I love being a part of this and I hope you do too! It's Monday! What Are You Reading? is now being hosted at The Book Date.




Saturday, October 28, 2017

Little Free Libraries

"It has turned strangers into friends and a sometimes impersonal neighborhood into a community."
                                                                                                                    ---LA Times

I have a Little Library and it has been a blessing to my life. It sits in front of my house. I love to sit on my front porch rocker and watch people stop and take a look inside the library and take books.

At the Texas Library Association Conference in 2016, I met the founder of the Little Libraries. He told us:

"85% of kids who go before the juvenile court system are illiterate."

"The nicest people in our country are Little Free Library stewards."

"(A Little Free Library is) a front porch that extends to the sidewalk, a water cooler on the street."


Here are the Little Free Libraries I have put up in my town:


LITTLE FREE LIBRARY #2924 IN FRONT OF MY HOUSE (2012)


My husband built this little library for me in 2012.

In 2014, I won a grant from my school district to build and maintain five Little Free Libraries in neighborhoods in my school zone. 

LITTLE LIBRARY #30157 IN THE FAIR OAKS NEIGHBORHOOD (2015)




LITTLE LIBRARY #31446 IN LIVERPOOL, TEXAS (2016)



LITTLE LIBRARY #37386 IN THE R&H MOBILE HOME PARK (2017)


I have two more Little Free Libraries I plan to put up in January of 2018 and February of 2018.



For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by West Metro Mommy ReadsTo participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken and then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky at West Metro Mommy Reads.

Tuesday, October 24, 2017

Unique Book Titles


Who knew there is actually a prize for the book with the oddest title each year? In 1994, the prize went to Highlights in the History of Concrete. The next year, the prize was given to Reusing Old Graves. Harry Abrams Publishing, no less, apparently put The Stray Shopping Carts of Eastern North America: A Guide to Field Identification out in 2006.

Sadly, I haven't read any of these.

I have, however, read these jewels:



Hypocrite in a Pouffy White Dress: Tales of Growing up Groovy and Clueless
















Have you read any of these? What are some of the oddest titled books you have read?






Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists.
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Saturday, October 21, 2017

Can You Read for 24 Hours? No? Neither Can I...



It's just not a readathon if conflicts don't arise.

This time it's the farmer's market and a barn party.

It's all good. I'll find a way to get in a bit of reading. Anyway.





Hour 1: Opening Meme

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? 
I'm here in Alvin, Texas, between Houston and Galveston.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? 
All my books about Italy.

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? 
Coffee. And Hershey's Kisses.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself! 
School librarian. Reader. Blogger. 
I love to read happiness books, travel stories, 
literary fiction and nonfiction, and children's books.

5) What’s one thing you’ll do different today?
Read. As much as I can.
And...we're...off!


Hours 2-8

Farmer's Market.

I did manage to get in the readathon challenge, a favorite read published from each year of the Readathon:

2007...Firegirl by Tony Abbott
2008...Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout
2009...Life-Size Zoo: From Tiny Rodents to Gigantic Elephants, An Actual Size Animal Encyclopedia by Teruyuki Komiya
2010...Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laura Hillenbrand
2011...IQ84 by Haruki Murakami
2012...Me Before You by Jojo Moyes
2013...Eleanor & Park by Rainbow Rowell
2014...Letters of Note: An Eclectic Collection of Correspondence Deserving of a Wider Audience by Shaun Usher
2015...Dead Wake: The Last Crossing of the Lusitania by Erik Larson
2016...Ghost by Jason Reynolds
2017...The Hate U Give by Angie Thomas


Hours 9-11


Started A Thousand Bells at Noon.


Hours 12-14 

Barn Party.


Hour 15-18

Finished Thousand Bells.

Started That Fine Italian Hand.

Hours 19-22

Slept.

Hours 23-24

Finished Fine Hand.

Closing Survey! 

1. Which hour was most daunting for you? I always fall asleep before midnight.
2. Tell us ALLLLL the books you read! Two: A Thousand Bells at Noon and That Fine Italian Hand.
3. Which books would you recommend to other Read-a-thoners? Picture books, graphic novels, audiobooks. All of these are great for times you feel you can't go on.
4. What’s a really rad thing we could do during the next Read-a-thon that would make you smile? I loved the idea of the pre-readathon challenge. Even though I didn't get to any of it. A collaborative photo of readathoners reading might be fun. Could we involve the schools somehow? T-shirts for those who make the 24 hours? I miss visiting blogs but maybe I'm missing out on Twitter.
5. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? Would you be interested in volunteering to help organize and prep? 100% likely. Yes, I'd like to help.


What did you think? Were you able to do Readathon this year? Have you participated in the past? Are you hoping to participate in the future?

Painted Rocks















For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by West Metro Mommy ReadsTo participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken and then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky at West Metro Mommy Reads.

Tuesday, October 17, 2017

Baking Bread: Fiction, Nonfiction, and Everything In Between

My dad asked me, "When you retire, what are you going to do?"

Seriously? He thinks I'm going to be bored? Moi?

There are so many things I love to do in this life, and most of them, with my busy work schedule, I only can work on a few minutes here and there. One of the things I love to do is to bake bread. I also love to write blog posts about baking bread. 


And I love to read books about baking bread.


FICTION BOOKS ABOUT BAKING BREAD



MEMOIRS ABOUT BAKING BREAD


BAKING BREAD COOKBOOKS



BOOKS I WANT TO READ SOON ABOUT BAKING BREAD








Armchair Foodie Travel Books

All-Time Favorite Foodie Narratives



Top Ten Tuesday is an original feature/weekly meme created at The Broke and the Bookish. This feature was created because we are particularly fond of lists here at The Broke and the Bookish. We'd love to share our lists with other bookish folks and would LOVE to see your top ten lists