Noah’s Reading – January 2008

January 31, 2008 Categories: Books , Homeschooling | Comments Off  

The Wrath of Mulgarath (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 5) by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
The Worst Case Scenario Survival Handbook: Junior Edition by David Borgenicht and Robin Epstein
The Nixie’s Song (Beyond The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 1) by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
Phonics Comics: Alien Alert (Phonics Comics) by Elizabeth Jaffe

Jonathan’s Reading – January 2008

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Nasty, Stinky Sneakers by Eve Bunting
On the Dog (Andrew Lost #1) by J. C. Greenburg
In the Bathroom (Andrew Lost #2) by J. C. Greenburg
Phonics Comics: Alien Alert (Phonics Comics) by Elizabeth Jaffe
Phonics Comics: Monster Madness (Phonics Comics) by Elizabeth Jaffe
Phonics Comics: The Far Out Fairies (Phonics Comics) by Judy Katschke

Josiah’s Reading – January 2008

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Frog and Toad All Year by Arnold Lobel

Read Alouds – January 2008

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Making Brothers and Sisters Best Friends by Sarah, Stephen, and Grace Mally
Where the Sidewalk Ends by Shel Silverstein
Eldest by Christopher Paolini (to Noah)
Dragon Rider by Cornelia Funke
Anne of Green Gables by Lucy Maude Montgomery (to Natalie)
A Light in the Attic by Shel Silverstein
The Field Guide (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 1) by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi
The Seeing Stone (The Spiderwick Chronicles, Book 2) by Holly Black and Tony DiTerlizzi

Review of Medabots: The Complete First Season

Categories: Kid Stuff , Reviews , Television | Comments Off  

(Medabots: The Complete First Season was provided to me by Special Ops Media for the purpose of review.)

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Enter the world of Medabots, where kids have the ultimate power — and supercharged robots. Fueled with artificial intelligence and a specialized arsenal of high-powered weapons, the Medabots compete against each other in exciting Robattles, with the winners acquiring Medaparts from the defeated Medabot. But more than anything else, these challenges are about courage and mind power, where the soul of the Medafighter and Medabot combine to emerge victorious.

The kids never watched Medabots on TV, but it looked like something they would be interested in, so I said we would review the first season DVDs. Medabots: The Complete First Season contains 26 half-hour episodes on four discs. The show is basically another attempt to duplicate the success of Pokemon, with the kids training Medabots instead of Pokemon. Since the boys LOVE Pokemon, they are loving Medabots.

Noah’s review: “Medabots is so, so, so cool. It’s about these kids who get these pet robots and train them to fight each other. Five stars.”

Jonathan’s review: “I think it’s great – five stars!”

Josiah’s review: “It’s cool. I like how powerful they are. I like what they look like. I like their attacks. My favorite Medabot is Spidar. Five hundred stars!”

Natalie’s Reading – January 2008

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Measle and the Dragodon by Ian Ogilvy
The Carnivorous Carnival (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 9) by Lemony Snicket
The Slippery Slope (A Series of Unfortunate Events, Book 10) by Lemony Snicket

What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist-The Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth-Century England

January 30, 2008 Categories: Books , Reviews | 6 Comments  

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I finished What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox Hunting to Whist-The Facts of Daily Life in Nineteenth-Century England by Daniel Pool today, and I highly recommend it for anyone who loves to read 19th century literature. I learned so much – and found many titles to add to my to-read list.

Pool is absolutely thorough in his description of 19th century life. The section titles include:

~ The Basics: explaining currency, measurements, the calendar, and the basics on England and London

~ The Public World: all the titles, social etiquette, calling cards, rituals, sections on the government and the Church of England, and much, much more

~ Transition: Coaches, Horses, the Railroad, the Mail

~ The Country: Life on the farm, who’s who in the country, local government, etc.

~ The Private World: marriage, sex, homes, food, furniture, clothing, and the hierarchy of servants

~ The Grim World: orphans, the workhouse, disease, doctors, and death

The above makes up part one of the book; part two is a detailed glossary of all those terms that we get stuck on when reading the likes of Vanity Fair, Great Expectations, and, of course, Austen’s works. This book will take up a prominent spot on my upstairs bookshelves, because I know I’ll be referring to it many times in the future.

Putting the I in iPod

January 29, 2008 Categories: Memes & Quizzes , Music | 3 Comments  

I don’t have an iPod, but I do have an MP3 player that has a shuffle feature, so I am going to play along with this fun meme I saw at Praise the Lord and Pass the Prozac.

Here are the instructions:

1. Put your music player on shuffle.
2. Press forward for each question.
3. Use the song title as the answer to the question.
4. NO CHEATING.

Q: What does next year have in store for you?
Show Me the Way to Your Heart – Sara Evans

Q: What does your love life look like next year?
Cinema Paradiso – Josh Groban

Q: What do you say when life gets hard?
Blessing in Disguise – Christine Dente :)

Q: Song that reminds you of good times?
Tim McGraw – Taylor Swift

Q: What do you think when you get up in the morning?
Never Going Back Again – Fleetwood Mac

Q: What song will you dance to at your wedding?
Already married, but here’s the song that came up: Bold Riley – Kate Rusby

Q: Song that reminds you of your first kiss?
Bless Me Indeed – Mercy Me

Q: Your favorite saying?
No One Like You – Barlow Girl

Q: Favorite place?
I’ll Take Care of You – Steven Curtis Chapman

Q: Most Missed Memory?
Starts With Goodbye – Carrie Underwood

Q: What song describes your best friend?
The Sleepless Sailor – Kate Rusby

Q: What song describes your ex?
The First Cut is the Deepest – Sheryl Crow – ha!

Q: Where would you go on a first date?
When God Fearin’ Women Get the Blues – Martina McBride

Q: Drug of choice?
The Power of a Moment – Chris Rice

Q: What song describes yourself?
Let Me Go – Susan Ashton

Q: What is the thing you like doing most?
The Maze – Taylor Hicks

Q: The song that best describes the president?
China Grove – Doobie Brothers

Q: Where will you be in 10 years?
Only Getting Started – Steven Curtis Chapman

Q: Your love life right now?
Scribbling in the Sand – Michael Card

Q: What is your state of mind like at the moment?
Whiskey, Yer the Devil – An Dochas – lol

Q: How will you die?
Heaven Knows – Kathy Troccoli

That was fun – let me know if you play along!

Tonight…

Categories: Television | 7 Comments  

…there is a new episode of House – finally!

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Bloggy Giveaways Carnival

January 28, 2008 Categories: Blogging , Books , Contests | 112 Comments  

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Shannon of Rocks in My Dryer and Bloggy Giveaways fame is hosting the Bloggy Giveaways Carnival. Click on that link to go to the ginormous list of blogs participating and giving away prizes. If you want to participate, click here for the guidelines.

Now, what would you expect me to be giving away? Books, of course! Six pre-read, gently-used books. That means there will be six winners! All you need to do to enter is leave a comment on this post telling me your top three picks out of these books:

~ Abide with Me by Elizabeth Strout. You can read my review here.

~ The Jane Austen Book Club by Karen Joy Fowler.

~ The Awakening and Selected Short Fiction by Kate Chopin – my review. Please keep in mind that the copy I’m giving away is the mass-market paperback edition of the Barnes & Noble Classics, not the trade paperback one that is pictured in the review.

~ The No. 1 Ladies’ Detective Agency by Alexander McCall Smith.

~ Echoes by Maeve Binchy.

~ The Copper Beech by Maeve Binchy.

Now, leave a comment here before Saturday, February 2, 2008 at 12:00 am PST. I will use a random number generator to draw six names sometime Saturday. (Duplicate comments will be deleted, so just one, please.) Don’t forget to tell me what your top three picks are! That way when I draw names, I can hopefully match you with a book that you’re actually interested in reading. Good luck! And be sure and check out all the other giveaways – some have much more extravagant prizes than I’m offering.