#SpringFlingKidLit contest entry: FLORY’S FAIRY WINGS

Thank you for this delightful Spring Fling Kid Lit contest opportunity hosted by Kaitlyn Leann Sanchez and Ciara O’Neal. There are also some amazing prize donors! You can shower our hosts and prize donors with love by visiting their blogs, following on social media, and viewing their amazing books.

I found my gif HERE.

I now present my tiny tale introducing Flory, The Garden Fairy.

FLORY’S FAIRY WINGS

By

Christine Alemshah

WC: 149

At graduation, Flory and her fairy friends debuted wings displaying their true power. 

Willow’s green wings cascaded a flowering arch. 

Phoenix’s fiery wings transformed her into a bird.

Amaya’s silver wings showered everyone in light rain.

Flory touched her back. Nothing. Her smile quivered at her turn. She ran to the ice cream shop instead.

“I’ll never be a real fairy without wings.”

A boy in front of her pulled at empty pockets.

Flory handed him a coin.

“My treat,” she said.

“Thank you,” the boy replied.

Prr-ing! Golden wings sprouted on Flory’s back.

Flory puzzled.

The boy ran to help an old fairy tie shoes he couldn’t reach.

I get it now, thought Flory.

She ran back to graduation.

“Oh, Flory,” said Amaya.

“They’re beautiful,” said Phoenix.

“What’s your power?,” asked Willow.

Flory smiled. “Something measured, yet unseen. I spread kindness forward one fairy at a time.”

Book Review: What Do Moms Do? By Amy Houts & Emily Bush

This little gem arrived in the mail recently, and I read it to my girls right away. They are super curious about what Moms do all day (answer: ALOT!). It’s a constant conversation we carry out each day. To their delight, this little book by Amy Houts & Emily Bush talked about that very subject! They loved saying at the end of each page whether it was something their mom did or not. Their giggles and snickers told me they loved it.

I also must talk about the animal mom/children illustrations throughout the book. They are just darling and very nostalgic for picture stories from my childhood. My new reader (who is 6) will be able to read his on her own. I love adding new books she can pick up and enjoy anytime she pleases. This one is a welcome addition to our library.

Virtual Spring Break ideas for kids

Credit: es.phillipmartin.info

So… Spring is coming up, and just like last year, things are looking a little different. I know we are all itching to get out! Our family included! And this year, our family does have a plan to get out … a little!

But, largely — we will still be at home, so we will still be doing a bit of vicarious vacationing! I’ve compiled a list of wonderful resources to enjoy a virtual vacation!

Don’t forget laundry basket + water in a spray bottle + roller coaster videos

= Ultimate At Home Splash Mountain Experience!!

San Diego Zoo
Smithsonian’s National Zoo Webcams

Canadian Egg Farm
Canadian Apple Orchard
Undeniably Dairy- Visit a Dairy Farm

Yellowstone National Park – visit several locations in the park.
Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida
Hawai’i Volcanoes National Park, Hawaii

Yosemite National Park, California

My #50Preciouswords entry – The Kindergarten Train

There’s a lovely little contest hosted by children’s author, Vivian Kirkland, going on right now for children’s writers, and there’s still time to enter through 3/7/21 if you’d like to join! The rules are quite simple to follow. Write a story with a beginning, middle, and end appropriate for children 12 and younger in 50 words or less. That’s it! And did I mention there’s prizes? You can find information and read everyone’s entries by following this —> here!

And here is my entry called The Kindergarten Train. The first lines came to me years ago — left in a notes file incomplete. I’d imagined what the first day of school for my nervous new students would be like and how there might be a story that would help with that transition. The visual imagery of a train that all the kids climb aboard while their parents waved goodbye came to mind as an analogy about the new journey they were embarking upon —an adventure and their opening to the wide world of school. Vivian’s contest provided the perfect opportunity to complete this story idea!


The Kindergarten Train
By
Christine Marie Alemshah


When the kindergarten train whistle sounds — Choo! Choo!
Will you be ready?

“All aboard!” 

Along the way, you’ll pick up new friends. They’ll have lunch boxes, backpacks, and smiles – just like you.

Finally, you reach your destination.

“Choo-Choo!” your teacher will say. “Your kindergarten adventure is about to begin.”

Picture Book Review: Cow Says Meow by Kirsti Call | Read this one out loud!

Cow Says Meow

Author: Kirsti Call

Illustrator: Brandon James Scott

I had the pleasure of reversing Kirsti Call’s latest picture book “Cow Says Meow.” Here is the book blurb on the back cover:

Read this zany picture book full of mixed-up animal sounds out loud. Fun puns and wordplay will have readers mooing, neighing, and clucking, and even laughing with every page turn.

I feel the key phrase in that blurb is read out loud. Because it’s true, when you read it out loud, especially to a three year old and six year old, a special kind of magic happens. You will laugh, and you will have little readers joining in and telling each animal that they are not, in fact, making the correct sounds. The illustrations are absolutely hilarious and kid-friendly. My daughter especially enjoyed the ‘pig who said hi.’ These animals are definitely confused. The wordplay throughout will make the parents reading along chuckle as well. I definitely recommend this book for some, rollicking laugh out loud fun. My guess is your little readers will ask you to read it again and again.

Firsts Books — Confidence Builders for Pre-Readers

Whether you prefer phonics-based methods, sight-reading methods, or some combination of both when teaching your children to read, one of the first things to consider is how to instill in them a desire to flip through a book, point out the words or pictures, and ‘read it’ on their own. This will boost confidence in your little pre-readers. It also lays the groundwork towards them becoming lifelong bookworms. Of course, in addition to books like these, continuing to read aloud a variety of picture books is highly recommended. Our family’s daily goal is to discover three new stories a day.

Sandra Boynton’s books and specifically Blue Hat, Green Hat, only need to be read aloud a few times before your little one will want to take over and read it themselves. The child in turn becomes the storyteller, while the parent can giggle at all the ‘oops’ moments.

I also love this set of First Little Comics by Liza Charlesworth. Simple two to three words spread on each page and yet still manages to be humorous. Both my 3 yr old and 6 yr old enjoy reading these books by themselves.



12 x 12 in 2021 – Back after a long break!

It’s official! I’ve signed up for the 12 x 12 Challenge hosted by Julie Hedlund! My first time doing so since 2013. I had started participating the previous year, in fact here is my original badge from 2012. I can hardly believe it’s been that long! So far I have 1 full draft, 2 partials & 2 revisions under my belt for 2021. 12×12 will be the extra boost needed to stay motivated this year! There’s still time to sign up if you’d like to join in on this fun picture book writing journey. Now-Feb. 28, 2021.

My original badge from 2012!

What is this challenge all about?
The premise is simple. Write 12 full picture books (with a beginning, middle, and end) in 2021. It’s ok if they’re not submission-ready. The idea is just to put pen to page, while motivating yourself and other writers in the process.  You can even earn prizes!! How about that?

Fun homeschool alphabet bundle – Get A & B for FREE.

Like many of us this past, I’ve been at home teaching my children as we continue with homeschool preschool and virtual/distance learning! One of my favorite resources I’ve been using with my 3-year-old has been this fun A-Z bundle from the Teachers Pay Teachers online store Fun with Mama! And the best part! You can get A & B for free by clicking here. If you pay a little extra supporting an amazing Mama you can get the full set!

My daughter’s favorite so far — U for Unicorn!

I’ve also been holding on to all the thumbnails included on each page. I plan to extend the learning when we finish and play a letter matching game. Can you find the letter on the wall that matches? And once I feel like we have completed the project all together I will place all the letters into a keepsake book, and use the thumbnails to create an alphabet collage. My daughter has truly enjoyed creating her alphabet wall. She is so proud and often shows them off to other family members. In addition to letter recognition, she has also been able to build up her fine motor, gluing skills, and cutting skills.

Epic! App for Kids: The netflix for children’s books and research gold for writers

appstore_audio_480x360Raise your hand if you have young children? Now keep your hand raised if you also like to write books for children? Still have your hand in the air? Then you NEED to try Epic! An amazing app available on apple and android smart devices.

They have thousands of children’s ebook titles available, and are adding more each day including huge, mega popular titles and characters such as “Ramona”, “Peter Rabbit” and “Where the Wild Things Are.”

Here’s what my evenings look like now that we have Epic in our home. First, I set up a profile for my daughter and I to read together. Her current favorite books include “Old MacDonald’s Letter Farm”, “Duck Goes Potty”, and “Hello, How are You?” to name a few. That last one has taught her how to engage in a conversation with others. It’s very sweet!

Kids Profile_300x250After, my daughter is asleep for the evening, I switch to a second “research” profile and devour as many picture books, chapter books, and middle grade titles that I can before going to bed myself. If I find stories with structure or prose I admire, I can add those to my favorites to come back to and observe again later. I do this because, as a writer, it is difficult to write in your genre of choice without first taking the time to read many, many books in that genre! This is certainly helping me to shine up my very rusty writing skills.

lifestyle_fourkids_thousands_300x250You can try out Epic for yourself for 30 days for FREE!! Thereafter it is 4.99 a month to keep your subscription. That’s the cost of 1 board book per month, which I would likely easily be doing. (Or making special trips to the library to check out books, but who am I kidding? I’m a busy mom of a toddler … How often do I reliably make it to the library? In a perfect world we’d attend twice a week and engage in 20 minutes of uninterrupted storytime, but I digress.) Epic! makes life so much easier. We are building up a list of favorites and introducing new books here and there as well. She just loves the Beth and Bert stories from Highlights! Yup, Highlights! One of my favorite children’s literary magazines. Did I mention they have stories from Highlights?

SDSU Writers’ Conference 2017 features R.L. Stine, best-selling Children’s Author

conference-clipart-student-conference-clipart-1Alright. Any 80’s and 90’s babies out there? You likely grew up reading “Choose Your Own Adventure Novels”, “Babysitter’s Club” and “Fear Street/Goosebumps”! I am personally a total super-fan of Ann M. Martin, Christopher Pike, and R.L. Stine. How fabulous would it be to meet one of your favorite childhood authors in person?

Coming up in January 2017 SDSU will be hosting its annual Writers’ Conference in San Diego! This year R.L Stine will be featured as one of their Keynote Speakers along with J.A. Jance. I can only imagine their speeaches will be insightful and inspiring. I had the privilege of attending this event back in 2013. I found this conference to be fun, friendly, and informative . I love that along with their informative panels they also provide opportunities for networking and one-on-one sessions with industry professionals.

Follow this link to find out more about this fabulous conference: http://www.ces.sdsu.edu/wc

You can also sign up to receive updates about the event. They will be introducing a new conference format this year. I look forward to hearing all the details about their breakout sessions!