Archive for Books

Toddler Empathy

We had a fabulous day today.

First we went to a “Soccer Tots” demo. We’ve been joking all week about what a 1-3 year old soccer clinic looks like. We imaged half the kids sitting on the floor, a quarter of the kids crying, and a quarter accidentally kicking each other.

Soccer Tots

Despite my high expectations for humor value and low expectations for organization, the class was actually quite fun for the kids involved.

Baby LOVES kicking the ball around so I was hoping it would be a big hit. She’s been getting better and better at being around new people and today she participated like a champ. A little boy her age wanted to share with her which is just about the cutest thing, but Baby isn’t quite at that stage yet. I was very proud, though, that she managed to throw the ball as well as kick it in the right direction. Here’s another picture…faces blurred to protect the cute little people who aren’t related to me.

Go, Soccer Tots!

After her nap, we ventured out again to check out our local libraries. We have a choice of two and as a Libra I am incapable of reaching a quick decision.

At the library was the calmest, sweetest dog and Baby actually got close enough to touch the dog (though she stopped short of an actual petting)! This is huge for us. Usually she doesn’t even want to be in the same room as a dog, although she is fascinated by plush dogs and dogs in books. All the way home she kept telling me, “Mama, Woof Woof!”

Just for fun, here’s another pic of my cutie:

Baby in a Hat

Finally, at bedtime tonight, my daughter gave me a glimpse of the caring young woman I hope she will become. We were reading Babar, one of her new favorites, and when we got to the part where Babar cries because he misses his mother (who was shot by the hunter), tears started streaming down my little girl’s face. She pointed to me and said, “Mama!” I hugged her and told her that I was fine and mumbled something about trying my best to avoid getting shot by a hunter.

Then I reminded her that the story had a happy ending and asked her if I should keep reading. I made sure to keep my tone upbeat through the rest of the story as we followed Babar’s homecoming, wedding, and coronation. Her smile grew as we continued the reading and then she burst out in applause as Babar and Celeste rode away in their beautiful balloon.

The End.

Book Giveaway: Get in Shape and Talk to Your Teen

Dancing with the StarsI haven’t been blogging for a while and I promise you’ll hear more about why in the next week or two.

In the meantime, it is that time of year again, the Bloggy Giveaways (click for even more contests)! I have two new books (these are clean copies I did not read) to give away.

The first is Dancing with the Stars: Jive, Samba, and Tango Your Way into the Best Shape of Your Life. If you are wondering how to get in shape while enjoying hot dances, this book will give you the moves.

The Teen WhispererPlus, I have The Teen Whisperer: How to Break Through the Silence and Secrecy of Teenage Life. Teenagers can be incredibly difficult to understand and help. This book brings insight from a successful, but unorthodox therapist who works with the most troubled teens. If you or know someone who needs help with communicating with a teen, you’ll find this book to be a great resource.

To win: Just leave me a comment, telling me (briefly) why you would be interested in winning these books, by February 1, 8PM EST. I’ll choose one winner at random for both books. Remember to leave an e-mail or URL where I can reach you if you win. I will ship to any US (including US military addresses that count as US shipping) or Canadian address. Good luck and enjoy!

Damage Control: A Book Giveaway! On My Personal Blog!

Enter to win a copy of Damage Control: Women on the Therapists, Beauticians, and Trainers Who Navigate Their Bodies!

Although I don’t intend to make a habit of posting giveaways on Mama Saga (I have Mamanista! to give away cool stuff) I’m excited to join in the fun of the Rocks in My Dryer Fall, Y’all Bloggy Giveaway. Since I know Karma is Real, maybe this will mean I’ll actually win one of the bazillion (I’m a Libra, I exaggerate a little) contests this time around.

People send me books. Sometimes they are books I specifically request, sometimes they let me know they’d like to send them and I say cool, and sometimes they just arrive out of the blue. I like to read. I read a lot. I read a wide variety of books. Or at least I used to before my mind became singularly focused on keeping Miss Baby Diva stimulated, secure, and safe from falling down the stairs.

However, even when I used to spend hours a day reading, I was never really into “Chick Lit.” So, unfortunately, I can’t tell you if Damage Control: Women on the Therapists, Beauticians, and Trainers Who Navigate Their Bodies is a good book or not. But I’m sure if you like the idea of celebs like Minnie Driver and Rose McGowan dishing about the people who help keep them fit, beautiful, and more or less sane, you’ll enjoy this book.

I’m hoping to give this book a new happy home where its fabulous anecdotes will be better appreciated.

All you have to do is leave a comment on this post by November 2 and just tell me which type of professional you rely on the most to keep your body and/or mind in tip top shape…or who you WOULD love to see if you only had the time and money. Make sure to put your website or e-mail address in the “your website” field so I can reach you if you win. I hate spam and will only e-mail you if you win!

Contest Ends: 11:59, November 2 and the winner will be announced on Nov. 3

Open only to U.S. (including Military Addresses) + Canada.

Shameless Plug: While you are here, please check out Mamanista’s latest contests–we have a whole bunch ending in the next two weeks, including:

Dumbledore and the Politics of Children’s Literature

I must admit, I have not read the Harry Potter books. Just not that much time for reading for pleasure (other than the pleasure of sharing the same picture book over and over with Baby Diva) and when I do get the time, I’d rather read something else. I have seen the movies and have enjoyed them.

But I did find this story interesting: Rowling says wizard Dumbledore is Gay.

I read that a couple of days ago on a gossip blog and I was intrigued but I lack the context. I wonder whether she already had it in mind or she’s just saying it now to seem “hip” or “edgy” or to be an activist and make a point. I find it interesting from mainly a literary, author-intent standpoint rather than as a political issue, although I imagine it will become a political issue for some readers.

If she did have it in mind all along, I think it is also very interesting that although she had it as part of the characterization in her mind, she did not feel the need to make it overt in her books.

I’d be curious to hear others’ thoughts about this.

She’s an intellectual…

Baby Diva insists on only the best entertainment. She likes it when you talk with her, sing with her, and dance with her…but the absolute best is a good story.

Whenever I tell people that Baby Diva demands storytime, they think I am projecting or, worse, I am already trying to push her into the rat race of academic success.

Then they see it with their own eyes. The book comes out and any fussing stops. Baby Diva turns her laser-like focus towards the object of her desire and insists we read her a book. Picture books hold some mild interest, but since age two months’ she has prefered a genuine rhyming tale.

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