“Earth, My Dearest” #NewBook #EarthDayEveryDay

Earth, my dearest, I will. Oh believe me, you no longer need your springtimes to win me over.” —Rainer Maria Rilke

earth day book

A new book, Earth, My Dearest, is an inspirational compilation of over 200 quotes around conservation and sustainability. Hopefully it will inspire people to treat the planet a little more respectfully, and further give inspiration to those who fight to keep the planet livable and healthy for all species.

Highlighting the wonders of our planet and ways on how best we can save it, Earth, My Dearest includes quotes ranging from poet Henry David Thoreau to activist Greta Thunberg. This quote collection will help show all of us how to cherish the environment and key ways to protect our fragile planet moving ahead to an uncertain future.

There is no time like the present to begin your environmentalism or kick it up a notch. We are on borrowed time, with species vanishing literally every day, and much more rainforest is destroyed then is left remaining. If we hope to have a planet, we better start working together and not just SAYING we care, but actually doing things that show that we care.

We need to show our children how much we love them and save their futures.

What have you done today to love your planet?

For inspiration, check the book out here or wherever you buy your books. Have a good day, love to all.

How Our Government Really Works—What Every Teenager Should Know

After such a wild election season, kids and teens might find themselves more interested or curious in politics. And if so- good on them. Let them read all they can, and not just about one side of things. Forming well read and  properly researched opinions will only make them better, smarter, and more empathetic people.

One book that has recently come out is a book that describes itself as “compelling, bipartisan insights about our country’s democracy. You Call This Democracy? How to Fix Our Government and Deliver Power to the People from author, speaker and public policy expert Elizabeth Rusch examines in simple terms our democracy’s missteps and how we can work together to create “a more perfect union.”

Some of the topics discussed are-

1. Why the race for president might distract us from the most important story of this election — ballot measures that affect our democracy

2. How COVID provides a surprising opportunity to finally do something about this country’s abysmal voter turnout

3. Important election topics people can discuss with family, friends and colleagues without starting a partisan brawl

4. What every American needs to know about how elections are run in their state

How Our Government Really Works—What Every Teenager Should Know

Whether you’re a student, parent, educator or engaged citizen seeking the truth, You Call This Democracy? How to Fix Our Government and Deliver Power to the People from public policy expert Elizabeth Rusch paves the way for every citizen to not only understand the flaws in our current democracy but to also fix them.

“We think we live in a democracy. One person, one vote. But how democratic is our government really?” Rusch asks. “The hard truth is that political power is not shared equally among all citizens. It shouldn’t matter if you are rich, poor, urban, rural, Democrat, Republican, old or young when you mark your ballot. Your race and gender shouldn’t matter either. But they all do.”

You Call This Democracy? gives an honest view of how our democracy truly functionswho really has the power and why (and how that power impacts politicians and policies) and how we can work together to make our democracy more responsive to the will of the people.

Consider the following:

1. Presidents can take office without winning the popular vote. 

2. Voting districts are drawn by politicians for their own benefit.

3. Millions of citizens—young, old, poor, people of color, women—are blocked from voting.

4. Money wields much more influence than the wishes of ordinary Americans.

You Call This Democracy? offers insightful solutions to undemocratic elements plaguing our government, with inspirational examples of citizens already working to make change. International comparisons, extensive sources and resources prompt readers to dig deeper ― and take action.

Supplementary materials to the book include Rusch’s “50 State Democracy Report Card” (https://www.youcallthis.com/your-state), where people can check to see how democracy fares in their state overall and on specific metrics, and how they can strengthen democracy in their state; and a series of short, fun, informative videos on the issues covered in the book, called Flash Course on Democracy, available free at: https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUOGZlteO6dRY7aQV1uqpddW1C1maGLxP.

Additionally, discussion guides and debate questions are available at www.youcallthis.com.

Elizabeth Rusch is the author of 20 award-winning books, and more than 100 magazine and newspaper articles. She is also the creator of the “50 State Democracy Report Card” and the video series Flash Course on DemocracyYou Call This Democracy?, an Amazon Bestseller, was featured in the New York Times Book Review and received a starred review from Kirkus, which called it “a riveting must-read.” Rusch and her work have also been featured in The Discovery Channel, Oregon Public Broadcasting’s Think Out LoudThe Wall Street JournalTeacher magazine, Parenting Magazine and Working Mother, among many others. Rusch has a master’s in public policy from the University of California, Berkeley, and has served as a Jacob K. Javits Fellow in the U.S. Senate. Visit her at www.elizabethrusch.comwww.youcallthis.com and on YouTube at https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLUOGZlteO6dRY7aQV1uqpddW1C1maGLxP.

You Call This Democracy? How to Fix Our Government and Deliver Power to the People Publisher: Houghton Mifflin Harcourt

ISBN-10: 0358176921

ISBN-13: 978-0358176923

Available from Amazon.com and wherever books and audiobooks are sold

For more information: www.youcallthis.com. Thank you.

Neema’s Reason to Smile

A heart-warming story about a child’s desire to go to school

 The kids are little older now and the novelty of going to school has wane. I have always shared with my nieces and nephews that they should not take education for granted … that going to school should not be a chore as there are many children in this world who would love the opportunity to learn how to read, write, and fuel their imaginations. However, they are unable to attend school because they cannot afford clothing, supplies, and books.

Neema’s Reason to Smile, written by Patricia Newman, is a vibrant and lyrical tale of a young Kenyan girl, named Neema, who dreams of going to school. We learn about Neema’s young life and how she must work selling fruit instead of receiving an education. She saves her coins in hopes of one day having enough money to pay for school, but it is one step forward two steps back for young Neema. One day Neema spots a little girl heading to school and follows her.  She ends up at a school and witnesses a learning environment she had only dreamed of. School was everything she thought it would, but alas, it was not meant to be for Neema; so she thought. For young readers, I believe this book is about responsibility to family, kindness and reciprocity. Although this story is considered fiction, the story is based on the real-life students at Jambo Jipy School in Kenya.

The book was engaging and illustrations well-done. My niece and nephew were attentive (with an occasional distraction as the family dog passed by). They asked questions about Africa, and found it sad that there are kids too poor to go to school.  My niece and nephew cheered when a teacher invited Neema to attend her class.  So, this little book was a reality check for them.

A couple of drawbacks I noticed included a few too many high-level words and harsh description of the “beggar”.

 

Rating: 4/5 stars

Donna Andrews

Super aunt of a 7-year-old girl and 8-year-old boy

 

 

Win New Book- The Greatest Brick Builds: Amazing Creations in LEGO

LEGO bricks have been used for decades by children and adults to create dazzling and playful buildings, vehicles, and unique works of art. In The Greatest Brick Builds: Amazing Creations in LEGO  ( available in hardcover $19.99), these jaw-dropping creations are presented in full color, with close-up photos, scale representations, historical commentary on the structures, and details on how each model was constructed using LEGO bricks. Included in this collection are the Golden Gate, the USS Missouri, and the Great Sphinx of Giza, as well as other iconic structures created by LEGO crafters from around the world.
A perfect  gift for LEGO fans young and old — get inspired with some of the world’s most impressive LEGO creations!

One of you can win a copy of this book for yourselves- feel free to enter by using the RC form below. Ends Jan 27, 2018. Good luck!
a Rafflecopter giveaway

GHOST TOWNS OF THE WEST

Ghost Towns of the West by Phillip Varney and Jim Hinckley blazes a trail through the dusty crossroads and mossy cemeteries of the American West, including one-time boomtowns in Arizona, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington, and Wyoming. The book reveals the little-known stories of soldiers, American Indians, settlers, farmers, and miners. This essential guidebook to the historic remains of centuries’ past includes maps, town histories, color and historical photographs, and detailed directions to these out-of-the-way outdoor museums of the West.

Plan your road trips by chapter–each section covers a geographic area and town entries are arranged by location to make this the most user-friendly book on ghost towns west of the Mississippi.

Ghost towns are within a short drive of major cities out West, and they make excellent day trip excursions. If you happen to be in or near Los Angeles, Phoenix, Las Vegas, or El Paso, for example, you ought to veer towards the nearest ghost town. Western ghost towns can also easily be visited during jaunts to national parks, including Grand Canyon, Yosemite, Crater Lake, Mount Rainier, Glacier, Yellowstone, and many others throughout the West.

Ghost Towns of the West is a comprehensive guide to former boomtowns of the American West, covering ghost towns in eleven states from Washington to New Mexico, and from California to Montana. This book has everything you need to learn about, visit, and explore a modern remnant of how life used to be on the western range.

Pick up your copy now on Amazon or wherever your prefer to buy your books.

Piper Was Afraid – Kids Book and Plush Toy

kids book

What’s better then a cute kid’s book? One that comes complete with a stuffed animal of it’s hero, of course. Piper, an Irish Wolfhound, was afraid. Of other dogs, of storms- of pretty much everything. Big a dog as Piper was, he was just a scaredy cat. What will Piper do?

“Piper Was Afraid! Piper is the main character of the children’s book Piper was Afraid. He is a cute and cuddly companion that helps children be brave… especially at bed time. Piper comes with an adoption certificate as well as instructions on what to do if Piper gets scared! “Piper was Afraid” is based on a real Irish Wolfhound named “Inspirations Bagpiper of Blackwatch” or Piper for short. He is a rescue dog and was adopted by the owners of The Inn at Willow Grove in Orange, Va.”

Check out the Inn at www.innatwillowgrove.com and don’t forget to tag your photos of Piper with @piperwasafraid to get featured on his instagram page- and who doesn’t want that?  Interaction with the real Piper. Well….his people, anyway.

My son got a kick out of Piper, and my guess is your children will as well. Even the very youngest kids will not have a problem following along this simple book with an easy, and relateable theme. Most kids get scared now and again- if a big dog like Piper can get scared (and learn to be brave), then they can feel better about it, themselves. Maybe they will feel like trying something new as well, and having a “brave” moment, just like Piper. Plush Piper can go along on adventures with your child as well, or just snuggle in for a story and bedtime.

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Adorable Handcrafted Plush Dog is available with it’s hardcover book. The Piper stuffed toy comes with an adoption certificate, the kids get a kick out of that.
Piper’s soft, shaggy fur feels like a real Irish Wolfhound.
Get your set today in time for the holidays! Order at http://rebekahphillips.com/features/

Peace, Bugs and Understanding – Cute New Kids Book

My son loves to be read to, and will hopefully be a big reader like his mom.  He likes pretty much anything, from the classics, to comic books, to “cute” books, and more. I’m glad he likes diversity in reading, hopefully it means he’s open minded. One of the latest books we have read is “Peace, Bugs and Understanding,” the newest children’s book by Gail Silver in her illustrated series beginning with Anh’s Anger.

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This books is about finding peace instead of anger, and encourages children to look inward and be calm when they feel anger. It deals with meditation on a child’s level- which I think is pretty cool, and timely for us since my son is about to start kids classes next month.  We both do yoga already, and I meditate, and feel this would be good for him as well.  Like his mother, he has some tendencies that this could help.  (Don’t we all, right?)  Maybe starting younger would be helpful.

This is a cute book, easy to follow, with relatable characters and problems.  We are going to find the first two books of the series as well so that we can read them all.

More About the Book

The newest (and final) installment in the series is “Peace, Bugs, and Understanding: An Adventure in Sibling Harmony.” Emotionally charged siblings experience harmony in lieu of rivalry when they discover Metta, a practice that has helped people transform anger into loving kindness for thousands of years. In addition to being an author, Gail is the founder of Yoga Child, a Philadelphia business that teaches children about yoga and inner peace.
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The Ideal Woman – New Book About Finding Oneself

The Ideal Woman, a new book by Roy Espiritu, is not about what you might think.  It sounds like it might be about looking for the woman that one finds ideal, or who the ideal woman is, or how to become the ideal woman.  Instead, it is one woman’s journey, torn between two worlds and two cultures, two countries and two lives, where she is often put on a pedestal because of her looks but then looked at sideways due to her heritage.  She is often forced to walk a fine line, and trying to find herself and what she wants for her life.

The book follows the life of a woman named Pearl and her family.  It centers on Pearl, but because of the importance of her heritage, her family is a big focus as well. Pearl has a Filipino mother and white father, which causes strife between both families, although both adore Pearl. Pearl spends her time mostly in the USA, but also spends plenty of it in the Philippines, where many people apotheosize her for her looks. One family fixates on her, and wants her for their son.  A courting process begins, and Pearl has to decide how she wants to live her life and what she really wants. How she “behaves”, dresses, thinks, acts, dresses, even her family’s history comes into play.
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