Tag Archives: kids

Book Review: The Princess and the Pickup Truck – Not Your Typical Princess!

The Princess and the Pickup Truck

By Bil Lepp

Illustrations by Lottie Looney

This fractured fairy tale is an adorably southern version of the Princess and the Pea. Like the classic tale, a prince is on the hunt for his perfect princess. But he has troubles from the get go.

Traveling from mountain top to mountain top, he searches for the perfect bride. And once he finds her, how can he be sure she is really a princess?

The adorable and humorous pictures help bring this tale to life. The southern flair is evident throughout each page as the story unfolds. Princesses can come in many shapes and sizes and thanks to Bil Lepp calico is as cool as a ball gown, hiking boots are as graceful as glass slippers and hairdos can be messy instead of perfectly piled on a princess’s head.

You know you are in the southern United States when a book starts out with “Y’all”.  The book is written in southern vernacular, but it is truly part of the charm of the story, so don’t let it put you off if you are from the North. Even if you are not from the south, just go with it and enjoy the sweet southern ride.

Clever and colorful, your kids will love this fun take on a classic. If you and the little ones you read to are fans of Joshua Funks’ books, you will love The Princess and the Pickup Truck. Move over perfect princesses, there’s a new girl in town!

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy for free from the publisher in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Copyright © 2019 Laura Hartman

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Book Review: Princess Party – A Scratch & Sketch Adventure – Makes a Great Gift

Princess Party – A Scratch & Sketch Adventure

By: Imagine That Publishing Ltd

 

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy from Dover Publications in exchange for a fair and honest review.

Princess Party is the perfect book for budding artists. Be sure to read the brief introduction before handing it off to the kids. It includes instructions to create your own scratchpaper. I am willing to bet your children will have as much fun creating scratchpaper as they will drawing additional pictures on it once they have completed the book.

There are three sections to encourage creativity on different levels. The first section is a story about five friends that are all princesses. They also have superpowers to help each other as well as those in need. The story has pages to color for each page of text.

The next section features the scratch portion of the book. Using the attached stylus (which is brilliant from a parent’s point of view since it does not get lost) that your child can easily create artwork to go along with the pictures in the book.

Lastly there are blank pages to create your own Princess Pirate adventure. Older children can write and illustrate their own story. Younger children can create a story with pictures or have an adult help him or her with the story and illustrate it. Either way, they are sure to enjoy the process of creating something they can enjoy again and again.

 

Throughout the book courage, friendship, loyalty, and Girlpower, and is encouraged. I asked my neighbor’s children if they wanted to give the book a try. They were all very excited to try it out. The oldest is almost 10, the next in line is 8 and the youngest is 6. All of them agreed unanimously that the scratch off section was the most fun.

Copyright © 2018 Laura Hartman

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Book Review: Creepy Crawly Crochet – Perfection!

creepy-crawler-crochetCreepy Crawly Crochet

by Megan Kreiner

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy for free from Netgalley and the publisher.

As an experienced crocheter (I’ve been crocheting for over 50 years) I feel confident in stating Creepy Crawly Crochet is the perfect instruction book with really cool, creepy but cute patterns.

It begins with fiber and hook suggestions as well as where to find black fiber fill (around Halloween they sell it under the name “Halloween Hay” – who knew?!). This is important for creepy figures that are done in dark colors, because no matter how tight your stitches are, the crocheted fabric will allow white fiber fill to be seen. From felt to project bags there are suggestions and guidance regarding the best type of each item to turn out perfectly.

Kreiner gives step-by-step instructions for crocheting from the beginning slip knot to binding off. She then follows with each stitched used in the following patterns, including “Finishing Touches” like whip stitching your project together and embroidery stitches that will add details to your project.

Tips and Tricks is the next section that helps with the little things that will make your Creepy Crawlies perfect.

The patterns themselves are clear, concise and detailed. There are images to enhance and clarify the directions. Each pattern has a color picture to allow you to see exactly how the project will look when finished.

All of the Creepy Crawlies are cute – in a creepy way. It is hard to pick out one or two that are my favorites over the others, but I have a soft spot for Frankie. He is on the top of my list to make for my grandson. My other favorite is Poe the Raven – he would look very cool sitting on my desk at work next Halloween.

If you aren’t that into creepy, you can still love this book. For instance, Jack and the Headless Horseman is a great pattern for a horse stuffed animal. You could make Jack with a head, and it is just a guy on a horse that all kids would love.

After the patterns, Kreiner has templates for the felt pieces used to finish off the characters. She also gives the abbreviations for the pattern instructions, crochet hook conversion charts, yarn weights and resources.

It doesn’t matter what time of the year it is, if you crochet toys or dolls, this is the book for you. I can’t wait to make my favorites.

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Book Review: Knitted Toys – Must Have for Knitters

knitted toys.peg
Jody Long’s first knitting book is a grand-slam! This book is everything a knitter wants in a book of patterns. There are 20 different patterns included. Each of them have clear, easy to read and understand instructions. The amount of yarn, other supplies and gauge are included to help new and experienced knitters succeed.

There are smaller, easier projects like Squishy Beach Balls and Sebastian the Starfish. Some patterns have color work, which I personally love to do. The instructions are easy to follow even for a beginner. This could be the perfect time to try intarsia if you haven’t before.

At the beginning of the book there are several pages of information and definitions. Be sure to read them. A needle conversion is included, UK and US needles are both listed. The amounts of yarn (with suggestions as to the type to use if you aren’t using the exact yarn as the author) are listed in yards and meters as well as ounces and grams depending upon what country you are knitting in or more comfortable with.

Most knitting books have one or two patterns that are cute. Every single one of these 20 knitted toys are adorable. It is hard for me to highlight a few favorites, but here goes – and this does not by any stretch of imagination mean I don’t like the others.

The first one I plan on knitting is Mrs. Hopper the Rabbit. She is absolutely charming, wearing a sweater and holding a basket with carrots inside. She is 11 inches tall and will make a perfect gift for Easter.

Primrose the Nighttime Teddy has a nightcap and nightgown and Rusty the Puppy looks so squishy and cute I can just see a toddler cuddling up with these two for a nap.

Most knitters have yarn in their stashes with would more than complete one or more of these terrific toys. The patterns would make perfect take-a-long projects because each piece can easily be stashed in a purse or backpack. I like to knit during my lunch hour at work and will definitely be carrying these projects with me .

I highly recommend this book.

DISCLOSURE OF MATERIAL CONNECTION: I have a material connection because I received a review copy for free from NetGalley that I can keep for consideration in preparing to write this content. I was not expected to return this item after my review.

 

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