I'm a mom of 3 kids, and I love to read and watch movies, and I'm picky about what my kids read and watch.

Friday, August 19, 2011

TV/DVD: Kipper the Dog

Kipper the Dog
based on the books by Mike Inkpen

Even though I have always hated the thought of the TV as babysitter, many years ago when I was pregnant with my second child and completely exhausted, I was desperate to find something decent on TV that would entertain my toddler for a bit so I could lie down.  But it had to be appropriate, and short.  One morning on CBS, I discovered exactly what I needed.....Kipper the Dog.  It is utterly sweet and funny, and my son was hooked.  The episodes are short, the stories are simple and slow-paced, the music is light, and the excellent animation is not distracting.  AND, amazingly for a kids' show, it's not obnoxious! 

Sadly my children have all out-grown these wonderful shows, but recently when I went to throw out the many VHS tapes (yes, it was that long ago) of "Kipper" that I ended up buying and which served us well for years, neither I nor my kids could bear to part with them.  We ended up sitting down and watching them together and laughing and reminiscing.  They are still in the cabinet with all our DVD's.  I guess I'll save them for my grandchildren.  :)

Recommended for ages 18 mo. - 5 years

P.S.  It turns out my 2 year old nephew is addicted too.

Thursday, August 18, 2011

BOOK: Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy

Lizzie Bright and the Buckminster Boy
by Gary D. Schmidt

I couldn't stop myself from reading another book by Schmidt to see if I was still impressed.  I am.  I really like his books and this is another excellent one.

This time the setting is early 20th century in a small town in Maine.  Racism and segregation are central to the story, and there are some pretty intense scenes, including a death (not graphic), that make this book more appropriate for older kids and teens.  There are a couple of uses of common mild swear words.  It's a clean, touching and profound story that includes themes of inter-racial friendship and doing the right thing even when everyone else is against you.  The story is loosely based on actual historical events. 

Recommended for ages 12 and up.

Friday, August 12, 2011

BOOK: The Miracles of Santo Fico

The Miracles of Santo Fico
by D.L. Smith

I just finished reading this for my book club.  It's a sweet and fun read about love and miracles in the lives of the inhabitants of a tiny village in Tuscany.  There are some interesting characters and plenty of quirkiness, and aside from a smattering of mild language and mildly suggestive moments, nothing offensive. 

It might also get you thinking about miracles, and what constitutes one.  And you might also start to see more in your own life.

P.S.  After reading the book, you might read this article from the author regarding the origins of the story.
P.P.S.  I was surprised to learn that "D.L." is a man.... for some reason I assumed it was a woman.