Tuesday, October 19, 2010

My very own Ivy & Bean

Do you know where I found my girls at 9am today?  In Lilah’s bed, under the covers, furiously writing the stories they began yesterday!  They were inspired by our plan to see Annie Barrows, the author of the Ivy and Bean series today at R.J. Julia Booksellers. I would have taken a picture, but the moment was so special it seemed private in a way.    
Some days it feels like we accomplish so much.  Math, poetry, history and science.  Then there are days like today, where we enjoy life fully and squeeze the learning into the cracks between our plans.  Every Tuesday our friends enjoy skating at a local ice rink. We go as often as we can. Put Grace on the ice and watch her come alive.  She skated competitively for a few years and now that she has given up lessons, she is able to just skate for joy.  

After skating she had piano where she was given her much anticipated Harry Potter Soundtrack sheet music.  While she was at piano Lilah had some computer time.
After picking up Grace from her lesson we hit the road for the 45 minute ride to the bookstore.  (We are currently listening to A Crooked Kind of Perfect, by Linda Urban on audiotape.)  I have always wanted to visit this store.  They are known state-wide for being an independent bookseller that attracts wonderful authors for visits and signings.  Annie Barrows read a bit from her newest publication, book 7 in the series.  She took questions and then signed books.  Grace and Lilah brought their favorite worn copies and now treasure them even more.  We also purchased one to have signed as a birthday gift for a friend’s upcoming party. 

I have to say I was not thrilled with the children’s selection.  On the store website, they claim to help find the perfect book.  Grace is having a hard time finding “just right” books.  She loves to read realistic fiction where weather plays a significant role in the development of the story.  Some of her favorite books have been Night of the Twisters, Escaping the Giant Wave and now, Ninth Ward.  The staff member, while very friendly and eager, was unable to recommend a book and referred us to our local library.  Grace was disappointed.  We are blessed to have wonderful book stores close to our house.  We have the chains, Borders and Barnes and Noble, we have used booksellers, the store we were at today, and Dinosaur’s Paw, a lovely store owned by Patricia Reilly Giff.  I think we will head there at some point tomorrow......

When Greg came home from work the girls were eager to share their developing stories with him.  He commented on the quality of their writing and on the development of their stories.  Their faces shone with pride.  I hope at some point they will blog their stories.   They are very entertaining.  Maybe someday they will host a book signing at a local bookseller.  I will make sure to have front row seats!


Theresa said...

I am so happy that they are enjoying writing!

And I am so envious that you got to meet Annie Barrows--A & P LOVE Ivy & Bean!! How exciting!!

And Patricia Reilly Giff owns a bookstore! Near you! The first series Allie ever got into was The Polk Street School series by Patricia Reilly Giff when Allie was in second grade! She related so well to Stacey and Emily and Dawn Bosco...she wrote her first fan letter to Patricia Reilly Giff!

Jessica said...

When I was teaching, I had the opportunity to have an in-service at her store, hosted by Ms. Reilly Giff herself all about the latest and greatest books for elementary aged children. It was a-mazing.

I want to take Grace there while Lilah is at her cooking class. I have to call to see what their hours are. If we make it there I will post pictures!

Lilah read many of the Polk Street books as well. They are lovely. Her son is usually working at the store and he will tell you the inspirations behind her books. One of my girls favorite books was I Love Saturdays and it has been out of print a long time. I carry it with me when we go just in case she is there. I would love to have it signed.

musicalmary said...

I love this post! Your girls are really blessed to have you as their guide on this educational journey - I think we want to take a field trip into Atlanta to one of the larger bookstores to explore! Thanks for a great post!

Jessica said...


We love bookstores. We get lost in the for hours. Unfortunately my wallet takes a huge hit but I never mind spending money on books!

Theresa said...

I am going to look for I Love Saturdays!

Jessica said...

Theresa, It is not a chapter book. It is an easy reader. But the character is endearing, the setting is most likely Brooklyn and it was one of the first books my girls read independently.

Karen said...

I want to come live on your street and HS Kei with you. Seriously Jessica, this is what you were born to do! You already get it so much better than most people ever do.

What an amazing journey!!!!

I love it.

linda urban said...

I'm jealous that you got to meet Annie Barrows. My daughter and I are big fans of Ivy and Bean -- but when Barrows was here in Vermont, I had to be in Canada, darnit.

If you go to my website (lindaurbanbooks.com) and send me an email telling me a little more about your girls' reading taste, I can try to make some recommendations for you. Before I wrote books for kids, I was an independent bookseller and I may have a few ideas.

In the meantime, thank you for taking the time to listen to the audio of my book on your drive to RJ Julia. I hope you and the girls enjoyed it.

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