Showing posts from July, 2020

Celebrating Diversity with Books

Open up a conversation about race and diversity with your children by checking out one of these books to read together as a family. Babies & Toddlers ** The Family Book by Todd Parr Really anything by Todd Parr is wonderful for little ones. With bright, colorful illustrations and simple words, Parr offers young readers a great introduction to diversity using both animals and people. One Family by George Shannon; illustrated by Blanca Gomez This book represents families of all shape, age, size, race and gender. Everywhere Babies by Susan Meyers Rhyming book showing what babies do and how they’re cared for by all sorts of different families. Baby Parade by Rebecca O’Connell; illustrated by Susie Poole Celebrating diversity and family with bright illustrations and simple themes. Leo Loves Baby Time by Anna McQuinn; illustrated by Ruth Hearson Leo attends baby time with friends of all colors. My favorite part is how his sock falls off little by little as the story goes on. It alwa

Car Culture in Quarantine

Over the past several months, life in the U.S. has changed in so many ways. As people have been restricted from gathering in person, the automobile has emerged as not only a vehicle for transportation, but a tool to enable important commercial and social activities. I’ve been interested to see the ways in which cars have come to serve as mobile personal isolation devices -- while also being concerned about who gets left behind in society when having a car becomes even more essential for daily life than it already was. Here are some of the innovative ways that drive-in and drive-through have become our new normal. Drive-in movies have gone from being nostalgic (and rare) to mainstream and in-demand. While some dedicated drive-in theaters are still operating, most drive-in movie events are being held at alternative locations such as parking lots and sports complexes. These events enable families to watch movies together on the big screen while remaining safe in their own enclosed sp

It's Never Too Late to Learn

"You can't teach old dogs new tricks." How many times have I heard that saying? It's one of the oldest sayings in the English language and many of us just assume that it is true. Well, it is not. Research shows that a person can learn new languages and new skills at any age. The brain is capable of rewiring itself when new information is introduced. We as human beings have the amazing ability to adapt. Often my complaint or excuse is that I just don't have the time needed to learn something new. I have to remind myself that if something is a priority or a necessity, I will find a way to learn and grow. Learning new skills is a constant in this ever changing world. When my kids were younger, I felt like I couldn't find the time to even take a deep breath. It was nonstop "go time." We were constantly running to this class or to that appointment. Now that they are older and are independent, I feel like I finally have the time to do things I want t

My Garden

“If I had a garden there would be no weeds and the flowers would keep blooming and blooming and never die.” from My Garden by Kevin Henkes I love flowers! I love to see flowers outside and have fresh cut flowers in my house. Last year, I tried something new and planted a small flower garden. This would be a great activity to do with children while we are all spending more time at home. How did I get started? Here is my story. Two summers ago, my coworker Janine planted sunflowers and zinnias in a small garden at the Hopewell Branch. It was fun to watch them grow. Then the inevitable happened. A snacking deer ate them! Fortunately, some of the zinnias and one lonely sunflower survived. From that moment on, the sunflower was named “Lucky”. A fence was placed around Lucky and the remaining zinnias to protect them. By the end of the summer, we had watched Lucky grow into a tall beautiful sunflower. Last summer, Janine planted again and the fence went right up. Janine gave me th