Santa in a Snow Globe

Santa in a Snow Globe by A.H. Edelman

NEW ILLUSTRATED CHILDREN’S BOOK HONESTLY EXPLAINS WHY THE HOLIDAYS WILL BE DIFFERENT THIS YEAR — AND HOW TO HOLD ONTO THE CHRISTMAS MAGIC

The holidays are typically a season of unbridled merriment and joy. However, this year’s celebrations are going to look a bit different. Recognizing the challenges this year’s holiday season will bring, New Jersey mom A.H. Edelman was inspired to write Santa in a Snow Globe, the first illustrated children’s book to offer parents, caregivers, and children a starting point to talk about life’s new realities—explained straightforwardly by Santa—complete with timeless advice, beautiful inclusive illustrations, and a big dose of Christmas cheer.

The mom of two was reading the business section of the Sunday New York Times when she saw a story about protecting Santas from COVID-19 this year. “The president of the International Brotherhood of the Real Bearded Santas—yes, it’s a real trade group—mentioned how they would explain to kids this year that Santa would need to sit behind some type of barrier,” Edelman says.

“Evidently Santa is in a high-risk group: many have diabetes, are overweight, and elderly.” Edelman thought about how, in 2020, children have had to adapt to new holiday traditions and celebrations nearly all year long. “Kids already couldn’t celebrate Easter, they sat out most of the summer and Halloween. They’re really going to want to see Santa for Christmas, or at least be assured he’s still coming,” she adds.

Going beyond mask-wearing and social distancing, Santa in a Snow Globe also touches on issues the world is facing today, including climate change and protests. However, Edelman’s Santa still shares a positive message of hope and the importance of appreciating the simpler things in life.

About the Author A.H. Edelman is the author of The Little Black Dress and Manless in Montclair. And, yes, she still believes in Santa. She lives in Montclair, NJ.

About the Illustrator Serge Srećko Gall, originally from Zagreb, Croatia, is a painter and illustrator whose work has appeared in publications including The New York Times, Esquire, and The New Yorker. He lives in Hillsdale, NY and is currently working on his autobiographical graphic novel.

My Review

This book is super cute, and I love the simple rhyme and how it explains to children in a lighthearted and easy to understand way why Christmas is going to be a bit different this year, and how that’s OK.

The pictures are so fun and the rhyme is easy to read, it’s a book that my children will enjoy over and over this season, and is a great segway into answering their questions about what’s happening this season.

“Because of Covid” is already a common phrase is my house, and while that makes me super sad as a parent to see my kids missing things that I had hoped for, it’s also helpful for us to talk about why things are different and how we can still have a great holiday.

I love how this book inspires parents and kids alike to talk about not just having fun for ourselves, but looking outside of ourselves and considering how we can encourage others this holiday season.

Plus, we love snow globes in my house, so seeing Santa in a Snow Globe in real life would actually be kind of awesome!!!

Question and Answer with the Author

QUESTION: Congratulations on Santa in a Snow Globe! Tell us about the book.

A.H. Edelman: Santa in a Snow Globe is the origin story of how and why St. Nick will be found sitting ‘in a place that is clear and quite round’ when families come to share their wish lists with him this holiday season. The book offers parents, caregivers, and children a starting point to talk about life’s new realities explained straightforwardly by Santa, complete with some timeless advice, beautiful and inclusive illustrations, and a big dose of Christmas cheer.

Q: What inspired you to write this book?

Edelman: I got the idea for the story after reading an article in the business section of The New York Times Sunday edition when the president of the International Brotherhood of the Real Bearded Santas mentioned how they would explain to kids this year that Santa would need to sit behind some type of barrier. Evidently Santa is in a high-risk group: many have diabetes, are overweight, and elderly. I thought about how, in 2020, kids already couldn’t celebrate Easter, they sat out most of the summer and Halloween. They’re really going to want to see Santa for Christmas—or at least be assured he’s still coming.

Q: You are a parent to two girls. Why do you think it’s important for parents to talk openly with their kids about the news and world events?

Edelman: As a parent, I can understand people asking whether this is the type of news we want to share with our children. And my answer is, ‘Yes, we have to.’ Kids are perceptive, and with pretty much everyone wearing masks these days, it’s hard not to know something is up. They stayed close to home most of the summer; some are still not physically back in school. Some have had relatives or friends die from COVID-19. Many have seen, or suffered from, smoke from numerous wildfires. It’s a tough world out there, but this wouldn’t be the first generation of kids to learn the hard lessons of needing to keep a stiff upper lip, thinking of others before themselves, being kind, and giving to those who have less.

Q: What do you want parents and kids to take with them after they read Santa in a Snow Globe?

Edelman: Many kids are already aware they are not living in a world solely consisting of sunshine and lollipops. But they also know—innately—that love is stronger than hate. Perhaps that is a lesson they can share with their parents. As the author of this book, I want to try to change the conversation that we as parents are having with our kids. I’ve learned that kids are resilient, which gives me hope. Our grandparents, or great-grandparents, lived through the depression. Some of my family survived the Holocaust. Our parents were taught to duck and cover in the 1950s—remember bomb shelters? And Bambi’s mom died. In fact, most of Hans Christian Andersen’s and Grimms’ fairy tales are pretty, well, grim. And really, it’s the older kids who are today leading the fight for gun control and climate change awareness—Greta Thunberg was 15 when she started to protest.

Q: You wrote this book with a lot of honesty. Why so?

Edelman: The book offers a starting point to talk and learn about life’s new realities. Some of the messages in the book may seem dark, but these are the times we’re living in. Kids are resilient and they deserve to learn about what’s going on, albeit by Santa. This generation of kids is not the first to have to deal with hardships and reality. Christmas is all about peace on earth and goodwill towards men and women. That’s a good message to send. All hope is not lost if we’re kind to each other and help those who need it most—and believe in science!

Q: You’re Jewish. Why did you write a Christmas book? Do you believe in Santa and the magic of Christmas?

Edelman: I’m an optimist. I’m also an adult Jewish woman who still believes in Santa Claus and happy endings. So, of course, Santa will show up on Christmas Eve, but before he does, he has a few words to say about what he sees happening in the world, how we—both parents and kids— can help change it and what matters most.

Santa in a Snow Globe is available now in hardcover, paperback and ebook at SantainaSnowGlobe.com, Amazon, Barnes and Noble, and wherever books are sold.

Books to Entertain the Kids

I received 3 amazing kid’s books to review. I’ll be honest, they’re all great! I just can’t pick a favorite … actually, I kinda can, there’s one I really just want to steal for myself.


1. Dino DanaDino Field Guide by J.J. Johnson, Colleen Russo Johnson, PhD, & Christin Simms

Fun facts about dinosaurs for kids. Did you know that the brachiosaurus was the tallest dinosaur that we know of today? That the kosmoceratops had fifteen horns and hooks on its head? That the spinosaurus is the only known dinosaur to spend most of its time swimming? Discover this and much more in Dino DanaDino Field Guide.

Dino Dana‘s field guide for your child. Fans of the Amazon Prime TV show Dino Dana will be so excited to have a Dino Field Guide of their own, put together by the incredible show’s creator and executive producer, J. J. Johnson. Full of colorful illustrations and fascinating science facts, this dinosaur book is sure to amaze any young dino enthusiast. View this book on the Dino Dana Store for more information and interactive content!

Review. My son loves this book! He claimed it the minute I opened the box and hasn’t let anyone else near it. It has so many different dinosaurs and lots and lots of pictures! It even has these cute little stuffed animal graphics that he’s convinced me to use as a guide to make him some dinosaur stuffed animals – I’ll post a tutorial if they actually turn out! This book is colorful, fun, and so re-readable. It’ll be a favorite for a while!

2. Coyote Peterson’s Brave Adventures: Wild Animals in a Wild World by Coyote Peterson

Animal Stories for Kids: Coyote Peterson’s Brave Adventures: Wild Animals in a Wild World chronicles some of the wildest encounters Coyote Peterson has had over the course of his travels. The stories begin with his first snapping turtle catch as a kid and lead down a trail of incredible moments he and his camera crew have had while filming their Brave Wilderness shows. From a giant alligator that nearly caught Coyote in its bone crushing jaws, to an 800 pound Grizzly Bear that helped him teach the audience what to do and NOT do if you ever encounter one of these enormous predators in the wild, every tale is laced with fast paced action and daring adventure. With the presence of danger often looming for Coyote, each story reminds the reader that animals rule the wild places of this planet, and if we respect them from a safe distance, even the most frightening creatures are more likely to be afraid of us than we should ever be of them. View this book on Amazon!

Review. I kinda want to claim this book for myself. The stories are interesting and exciting and teach about all sorts of different animals. This is above my 6yr old son’s reading level so I’ve been reading it to him and I’m not sure who’s enjoying it more. Me or him! This book is perfect for those slow days at home when we’ve got nothing to do.

3. I Do Not Like Living with Brothers: The Ups and Downs of Growing Up with Siblings by Daniel Baxter

Learn about the importance of family. I Do Not Like Living With Brothers aims to teach young siblings to see the value and goodness in each other. We never like everything about our brothers or sisters, but if we focus on the positive and recognize that our family cares about us, then we can live in community with greater joy.

Turn sibling rivalry into love and kindness. Exploring the family dynamic of a sister living with two brothers, in this children’s book, our young narrator discovers that while her brothers are dirty, smelly, and sometimes selfish, they are also kind, funny, and helpful. Author and father Daniel Baxter, cohost of the popular YouTube channel How It Should Have Ended, shows kids that perhaps living with your siblings is not all bad. View this book on Amazon!

Review. My 11yr old daughter snapped this one up right away. Which I’m assuming is the whole goal of the title. She read the book through very quickly and found it somewhat amusing. I realize that it’s geared towards slightly younger kids, but she’s not always happy to have brothers, and I’m glad she liked the book. Because with little brothers it’s important for everyone to show kindness even when the boys are doing super annoying little brother stuff. And it’s so nice to be able to encourage that kindness in a fun way.

 

Claudette’s Miraculous Motown Adventure

*This is a Sponsored Post*

Claudette’s Miraculous Motown Adventure
by A.K. Morris & Claudette Robinson
Illustrated by Pamela C. Rice

Summary
Little Claudette lives in the magic kingdom of Motown, where all the happy children sing and dance int he streets. Then one day, an angry witch casts a spell, and the kingdom descends into dark silence. Unhappy and bored, Claudette finds a box of Miracles in her attic. Inside are four little fellows – Smokey, Bobby, Ronnie, and Pete – who sing music so sweet. Claudette and the Miracles begin to sing together, but will it be enough to bring light and laughter back to the kingdom of Motown?

Review
This book was published in 2019, commemorating Motown’s 60th Anniversary celebration. It’s such a cute book, showcasing a little girl’s journey as she discovers the power of music.

The Author, Claudette, uses her own name, and fancifully tells of her journey as the first female artist with Motown Records.

The back of the book has a biography on The Miracles and their lengthy and accomplished career.

About the Author
As an original member of The Miracles, Claudette Robinson was the first female artist to sign with Tamla/Motown Records. In 1960, “Shop Around” became their first million-seller, prompting Berry Gordy to declare Claudette: “The First Lady of Motown.” During the Miracle’s six-decade career, the group has sold more than 60 million records to date, been inducted into the GRAMMY Hall of Fame, and the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. In 2017, the City Council of L.A. awarded a Resolution to Ms. Claudette Robinson for her varied accomplishments in the recording industry and her continuing philanthropic efforts.

Giveaway
Check out the Claudette’s Miraculous Motown Adventure playlist! Print out the coloring sheet for your kids to color while everyone listens. And, enter the giveaway for your chance to win a copy of Claudette’s Miraculous Motown Adventure.

Connect
Follow Claudette Robinson at:
Website
Facebook
Instagram

 

Think Big

*I received this book free for purposes of my review*

Think Big – By Kat Kronenberg, Illustrated by David Miles

New Children’s Book from bestselling, award-winning author captures the magic of our individuality and inspires kids to live their purpose.

In a society that often seems to encourage us all to look, act, and think the same, it can be difficult for kid to feel like what makes them unique matters. And, I’m sure that as we’re all homeschooling these days, we’re all discovering more and more of each other’s unique traits.

As hard as it can be, it’s good for us to discover, embrace, and celebrate all that makes us special so we can use our gifts to inspire others and ultimately make a positive and lasting impact on the home we all share.

Think Big is the third book in Kronenberg’s trilogy of books the Live Big Series. In Think Big, moody Baboon is faced with drought in his home, the African savanna. Even though they are all scared, inspired by Baboon, all the animals learn to reflect on who they want to be and what choices they need to make to shape their futures. The animals discover that they can make positive choices/decisions that allows them to connect their minds to their hearts, igniting their courage. Can they use their newfound power to not only survive, but ultimately thrive, amidst hardship?

As much as I love the story, I’m really in love with the illustrations. These bright, eye-catching illustrations go perfectly with the story and further help children remember how important it is for them to believe in themselves and discover how they can make the world a better place.

Extras:

You can find project guides, videos, and downloadable activity sheets at www.katkronenberg.com.

Available for purchase May 12. Pre-order is available from Amazon and Book People.

Fly Fly Again – Review

Fly Fly Again by Katie Jaffe and Jennifer Lawson. I’ve always loved flight. From building paper airplanes and flying kites as a kid to showing my kids how to do all these awesome things. Of course, we’ve added stomp rockets and drones to our flight arsenal.

So, I was excited to check out and review this cute book.

Review:

The other day, one of my kids asked me what sand dunes are (6yr old is working on 2 vowel words and read the word “dune” but didn’t know what it was). And I remembered a family trip to Kitty Hawk to explore the dunes where flight got it’s start. It’s always awesome to think of how many times people had to try before flight was actually achieved. This book does a great job of capturing that optimism and try try again mentality of someone who is truly passionate about what they want to accomplish.

She even enlists some help in her flight attempts. This really is a fun, and beautifully illustrated book about flight, friendship, and perseverance. Showing that if you just try again, eventually you’ll succeed.

This 15 page book was created for 5 to 10 year olds, but my 2yr old loves the pictures, even if he doesn’t understand the concept of perseverance.

And if you think about it. With over 600,000 pilots around the world, it’s amazing what just trying again and again can accomplish!

About the Authors:

Katie Jaffe: With a passion for children’s causes, Katie has committed herself to several charities, helping children around the world.  As Creative Director and Design Consultant of Aviation for Spectre Air Capital,  Katie has aided in the design of several high profile aircraft.  Currently, she is leading the marketing and design effort of an overseas airline.  She lives in Austin, Texas with her husband–who is a pilot– and their three children who like to fly. 

Jennifer Lawson: Lifelong educator and advocate of the Childrens’ Literacy Program.  Jennifer seeks to bring knowledge to students through creative curriculum and technology on a global level.  As Owner and President of Decision Tree Technologies, she is currently endeavoring to teach using technologically advanced solutions that excite today’s students. She lives in Austin, Texas with her family.

Author Q&A:

  1. Where did you grow up /live now? I grew up in El Paso, Texas and moved to Austin to attend UT.  I currently live in Austin with my husband and three children.
  2. As a child, what did you want to be when you grew up? I have always wanted to be a writer. 
  3. Do you have kids and/or pets? Yes, I have 3 children and 2 dogs  
  4. What first inspired you to write?  Since I was very young, I have always loved to write. I have also had a passion for children’s causes from a very young age, and writing this book was a great way to give back to children’s education with our proceeds benefiting UNICEF and Buzz Aldrin Ventures.
  5. What inspired your story? Our story was inspired by my husband Jordan who has had a love of flight since he was a child.  Our family is in the aviation industry and our 3 children have also developed a love for flying. We are constantly teaching them the basics of flight in our day to day life, and this book was the perfect way to do so for all kids that may be interested in flying.

More Information:

What your own copy of this cute book? You can purchase it at:

Amazon

Barnes and Noble

Google Books

Want to connect with the authors? You can find out more about them at their:

Website:

Facebook:

I received a copy of this book free for purposes of my review. All opinions are my own.

Where We Belong – Review

I received this book free for purposes of my review. All opinions are my own.

Where We Belong by Lynn Austin was an intriguing read about two sisters who grew up in Victorian age American but preferred adventure and travel in defiance of the expected social rules of the day.

In this story of adventure and challenge you follow two sisters, Rebecca and Flora as they search for an important manuscript. You’ll learn about why they’re here, how they got here, and be inspired by their love of adventure.

This book reads a lot like a historical fiction, which I found confusing at first until I found out that the author was inspired by a true story of two sisters who found an important manuscript. While this book is not historical fiction and really only takes the topic from actual history, it’s still very fun to think about how those women may actually have discovered things.

I enjoyed reading about Rebecca and Flora’s journeys to different places, and the dangers, the friends, and the adventures they encountered on their way.

This post does contain affiliate links.

Crown of Souls – Review

I received this book free for purposes of my review. All opinions are my own.

Crown of SoulsRonie Kendig

This book is the 3rd in Ronnie Kendig’s Tox Files series and is my favorite of the three. Gripping from beginning to end, this book was fun and entertaining to read.

The book starts with Tox being shot and the action just continues from there. Tox is forced to face his personal conflicts all while hunting down a deranged killer and keeping his team alive.

When an old army friend goes rogue, Tox and his team have to find him and stop him. Can Tox find him in time, can the team stop what he’s doing?

As they pursue, Tox learns more about himself than he really wanted to know. And he has to make hard decisions about how to protect his team and those he loves without becoming the monster that he is trying to stop.

I enjoyed this book and am looking forward to reading number four of the Tox Files when it comes out.

Praying for Girls – Review

I received this book free for purposes of my review, all opinions are my own.

Praying for Girls by Teri Lynne Underwood – Asking God for the Things they Need Most.

If you have daughters and don’t really know how to pray for them, this book is perfect for you. The author has suggestions for praying for your daughters both young and older across 5 different areas of her life.

Each section has several chapters that break down the topic, and each chapter has suggested verses, prayers, and activities for you and your daughter so that you can pray and press into these topics with your daughter and pray some more.

The ideas for engaging with your daughter are simple, practical, and great conversation starters for pressing into some of the more difficult areas of growing up.

For my girls, they’re young, so I think just now beginning to think about their purposes – which is one of the areas covered. There are some great prayers and conversation starters for me to use to begin digging into this a little bit now and then I can add on as they get older.

Praying for Girls was easy to read and is a great book for me to continue to refer to as my girls get older.

Threads of Suspicion Review

I received this book free for purposes of my review. All opinions are my own.

Threads of Suspicion (An Evie Blackwell Cold Case) by Dee Henderson

This book is about Evie Blackwell, an investigator who is great at cracking cold cases.

She’s such a great investigator she gets appointed to the Illinois Governor’s Missing Persons Task Force.

Evie gets to pick her own case and gets one that is truly puzzling and proves to be harder to solve than she expected.

With lots of twists and turns along the way. New friendships, old friendships challenged, and unexpected events. This book was a great mystery.

The author, Dee Henderson did a great job of keeping me guessing all the way to the end. Who did it? Where is the missing person? And how will Evie keep up with it all and her personal life at the same time?

A great mystery!

This post does contain affiliate links.

The Very Hungry Caterpillar Craft

HungryCaterpillar

The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle is a well loved favorite in my house. Even my 8yr old still loves it!

So, naturally, when I told the kids we were going to do a fun caterpillar craft, we had to read the book, about a doze time, before we could get started crafting.

We had so much fun making these cute little caterpillars. My girls even made some to take and share with friends, because, honestly, they’re so cute!

These little caterpillars are also fast, and easy to make. For your littles, just have them line up their little pompoms in the order they want them and you do the gluing. My 8yr old was thrilled with the prospect of using the hot glue gun so she insisted on making her own.

WormSupplies

Supplies:

PomPoms
Googly Eyes
Hot Glue Gun

Sounds easy so far! Now, just line up however many pomPoms you want, in whatever color order you want and hot glue them together. After the glue has dried (which is super fast in case your toddler is wondering) you can hot glue gun or stick on the eyes. I prefer the glue because they stick better.

Just look at this cute little caterpillar!

GreenWorm2