Basketball, College Halls, & Duck Calls

By Library Romp - 3:30 PM

It’s finally here!  The balls are swooshing, late night practicing, team dinners cooking, and basketball shoe buying.  We are the Imelda Marcos of basketball shoes around here.  And I thought girls were supposed to be the big spenders, it’s the boys and their NBA swag and JackThreads socks.  I guess crazy socks are what’s in on the basketball circuit, so I'll ignore the kangaroo and giraffe feet.  So now a senior and seventh grader basketball schedule is being thrown into our myriad of activities, but this just adds to the fun, the on the go, never-ending chaos.  How do I capture the insanity on this year’s Christmas card?  I love sending unique non-traditional greetings, and planning to make a DVD movie case for this year's Christmas card.   Not sure if we should go with an action packed movie or something like A Griswold Family Christmas?  I’ll explain later how my first idea was shot done, literally!

And ouch! When did a college dorm start costing as much as a house payment?  We are thrilled that our oldest son is receiving college acceptance letters, but the price of campus housing is unreal.   Every freshman needs to have the college dorm experience after leaving the nest.  After all, I wouldn’t be the same person today if it weren’t for experiencing the Chitwood dorm life @ Texas Tech.  Aside from the R A pouring our wine coolers down the sink and the 3 a.m. fire evacuations due to flaming pizza boxes being thrown down the trash shoot, it was a great way to meet people and connect with Raider land.  But I’m assuming college kids aren’t doing stupid things like that today?  Um okay mom, keep living in your delusional world.  But hopefully thinking, if he takes the basketball scholarship route not only will it save us a little money, but keep him so busy he won’t have time to be a part of dumb, not so well thought out activities.  One can hope right! 
But for tonight, I’m getting the chance to hang with the oldest and youngest and watching Monsters University.  Thinking he should apply there!
In prepping for our hill country Thanksgiving I gave into the Duck Dynasty craze and bought the family camo shirts and personalized duck calls.  No were not hunting, just thought we needed a little duck in our life.  I made a camo cake and announced that we were going with a Duck the Halls Christmas card this year.  The cake looked funky and was a big hit, but can’t say the same excitement was there for this theme choice, so back to the drawing board I go. 
I found this cake mix @ Wal-Mart? 
It’s Ace of Cakes & worth the extra pennies! 
Our camo and duck calls will still be put to good use in the woods this Thanksgiving, and I'll sneak in a few pictures.  Were sure to keep all the deer and other wildlife away, but maybe I can talk the family into a polar bear dip in the freezing river.  Just kidding, they think the water is too cold even during the summer.  And it is, the water @ Blue Hole holds a 68 degree constant water temp.  Brrr… 
So what are your Thanksgiving plans - to put up lights, watch the big game, Christmas shop?  Were keeping it simple and going to the Wimberley Christmas village, town square shopping, and hopefully a visit to Santa.  Not sure what happened with my six year old, but last year she would have nothing to do with Santa!   But hopefully now, she’ll sit on his lap long enough for me to get a picture!  Anyway, I wish you a Happy & Blessed Thanksgiving, and will get back with you on the Christmas front soon! 
The Good Reads
No Place For A Pig
By Bloom, Suzanne


Ms. Taffy wins a pig on the radio station, but soon realizes it’s not the sort she expected to add to her collection.  And can she manage a growing pig and her cats in a tiny apartment?   Through zany and clever trial and error attempts from her neighbors, a solution is reached.  A compassionate swine story, but I do have to interject on the truth about pigs. 
Do you remember last years pig posts where my daughter joined FFA and we got roped into buying not one, but two pigs?  The only real suitable place for a pig is a farm because they’re smelly, destructive, noisy, carry mites, and without proper exercise can get unruly.  Sorry to take the rose colored glasses off this story but in case you were thinking a pink curly tailed pig is just what you need, it’s not!   I apologize for the bias review, but even my reader thought the people living in the neighborhood would take the pig during the night and turn it into pork chops.   That’s what we did, and now have enough pork to get us through a Zombie apocalypse.
Mr. Tiger Goes Wild
By Brown, Peter
Tiger Gone Wild!  This charming tale is no different than Peter Brown’s other loved books, like Creepy Carrots and Children Make Terrible Pets.  Tying to shake it up a bit and going through a mid life crisis, this Tiger’s had enough status quo.  He wants to run wild, but in doing so begins to miss companionship.   Amusingly, on his return, his uptight friends have also gone a little wild.  Don’t we all feel the need to release our inner tiger now and then?   Grrr…eat that this shimmering orange tiger discovers when you open the door and allow others to be themselves, positive things can happen.  As they say, a tiger cannot change his stripes after all.
Our Librarian Won’t Tell Us Anything!
By Buzzeo, Toni

A library guru, nut, fanatic, or whatever you want to call me I always enjoy life lessons coming from the library.  Mrs. Skorupski the librarian won’t tell the students anything, but instead has them do the required tasks themselves.  Delivers that we learn best by doing, but the writing was tedious with too much unnecessary detail.  My reader stuck with it though wanting to see what would be dangling from the librarian’s ears.   Spiders, bees, what will she wear next?
Jangle: A Big Fish Story
By Shannon, David
A smooth tale of a story, that’s so famous, fisherman have been talking about it for years.  Jangle’s the legendary fish is more than you can imagine and you’ll love this boy’s underwater adventure, and better yet his choice in the end.   Beautiful watery illustrations with jangling lures from the fishes' mouth will “catch” you by surprise.  Always been a David Shannon fan, but this one more than others captures a valuable lesson.  One green fishing tackle box you just gotta open.
 I cut out a fish from a piece of felt, bought safety pins, and let my reader pick out beads that resembled fishing lures.   
And there it you have it, her very own Jangles.  
Turkey Trouble
By Silvano, Wendi


Oh no, turkey is in troubled and will go through lengths not to end up on the Thanksgiving table.  Will Farmer Jake be fooled by his disguises and eat the rooster instead?  Ding, Dong! ... Pizza’s here, so it looks like there will be another year for this turkey. Loved how the clever bird uses his resources, and my little reader enjoyed matching the garden veggies to the pizza topping.  “The pizza is a flat pumpkin, don’t you see it?”  Pairs great with our home books, Twas the Night Before Thanksgiving and Sometimes It's Feathers.
And here’s one turkey in disguise that you might find on an episode of Duck Dynasty.  Yes, it’s Si with his tea glass.  Who woulda' thought? 
Thanksgiving At The Tappleton’s
By Stuller, Judith

Everyone in the family is responsible for a part of the Thanksgiving meal.  But through a series of unfortunate events one by one they loose their assigned foods.  After learning it’s not about what’s on the table, but in your heart they feast on delicious Liverwurst sandwiches and pickles.   My first grader thought because they were wolves, they were going to invite the goat milkman over and eat him for Thanksgiving.     
We just watched the Thanksgiving Charlie Brown and my reader connected that the wolves in this story didn't have a "regular" Thanksgiving dinner just like in a Charlie Brown's Thanksgiving.  She’s going with the toast and popcorn over the Liverwurst. 
This Never Gets Old

Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do than by the ones you did do.
So throw off the bowlines. Sail away from the safe harbor.
Catch the trade winds in your sails.
Explore. Dream. Discover.

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