28 October 2014

Reading Week 2014

Every year, our school has one week that is dedicated to promoting reading.  Classes have book assignments, the school has a Caldecott Parade of floats, there are special programs in the library, and on Friday we have a big assembly where all the students dress as book characters.  It's my favorite. Last year, I surprised the students by dressing up as a book character EVERY DAY.  This year I had tons of students ask me if I was planning to dress up every day again, so I absolutely could not let my fans down.  This year, I went bigger and better.  What a great Reading Week we had!  (Click here to see last year's array of costumes...)

Here is what I did this year.

Monday: Madeline (for the Caldecott Parade) by Ludwig Bemelmans  

This was a challenge to find a yellow hat.  I finally ended up just buying a cheap floppy hat and spray painting it yellow!  (Needless to say, I didn't wear that very long...) The blue dress is a thrift score that I just added a Peter Pan collar to, with a red bow sewn on.  Add white tights and some patent leather shoes and the outfit works!

Tuesday: Camilla Cream from The Bad Case of Stripes by David Shannon (I love this book SO much!)

What a fun book this is!  If you have never read this, you really must.  It's on par with Dr. Seuss.  For this outfit, I bought some cheap striped kid socks from Walmart and layered them.  I also bought a white tank and added a purple bow, like Camilla's PJ's. I made a poofy pink bow for my hair and spent some serious time with grease face paints.  It helps to make your lines somewhat straight if you start at the top and put painters tape on your face.  I'm not lying.

Wednesday: An I-Spy book by Jean Marzollo

This was a fun one. My students all pretty much love I-Spy books  - even 7th graders! I made a freezer paper stencil for the logo. (If you don't know how to do that, I would highly recommend googling it and trying it out.  Makes for a super easy and legit-looking shirt.)  After the paint on the shirt dried, I just sewed and hot glued all sorts of wacky things onto it.  If you try this, make sure the objects you choose are pretty lightweight and that you don't put too much on your arms or elbows.  Otherwise, it will be super annoying to work in!  Take my word for it.

Thursday: Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin

My kindergartners went CRAZY for this outfit.  (I was pretty pleased with my cat-ear hair do!  I found it here.) I just thrifted a blue shirt and added a big felt heart.  I made a cat tail from some blue scrap material and sewed it onto the back of the shirt. I threw on a pair of navy cords and my red converse and voila!  And I had the added bonus of being very comfy in this outfit.

Friday: The Diction-Fairy (haha!) This is not a book character, but I chopped up an old dictionary to create the look, so...

I went with a whole fairy-godmother meets librarian meets the 80's vibe here.  I found a pink jersey dress at my thrift store and used that as my base.  Then I created a tutu from paper rolls, taken from a from a chopped up book, that I sewed onto a fabric base.  It ties in the back, so it is removable.  I made the wings with the book jacket and a wire hanger to help it keep it's shape. The wire is covered in more paper.  Then I accessorized with some crazy pink tights and leg warmers and cat-eye glasses.

This year is a double bonus because my oldest is a kindergartner this year.  So I got to dress HIM up as well!  He wanted to be Dr. Seuss this year. (Mom let him choose all on his own.  I have to say, I was seriously jazzed about his choice!)  I think he is the cutest little Dr. Seuss there ever was.  He was pretty pleased with himself!

I can't wait until next year!  I already have a few plans in mind... I better start thrifting right away!

28 October 2013

Reading Week Fun

I rarely do posts about my job for more reasons than one, but if I can be helpful to other school librarians, then I think that is totally worth it.

There is one week every year that I ALWAYS look forward to and that is READING WEEK.  It's the one time every year that I can justify dressing up as a book character every single school day and get away with it.  It is also so much fun to see the look of recognition/awe/confusion/panic/glee in my students eyes when they see me.

And I'll admit it... I will do almost anything to get kiddos excited about reading.  I think that is the difference between being a good librarian and just phoning it in.  So without further ado, here are the costumes I came up with for this year.  Thanks local thrift stores and Pinterest!

Monday: Max from Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

This was a painter's suit and lots of stiff white felt for paws and buttons.  I fashioned a cardboard crown that is spray painted gold and made a golden scepter from cardboard and an old curtain spring rod.  And I also added pipe cleaner whiskers.  

Tuesday: Grover from Percy Jackson and the Olympians by Rick Riordan

Yeah, this is a selfie.  Anyway, you get the picture here. Pretty simple and easy.  I already had the horns from a renaissance faire ages ago (don't judge me) and I just took an orange tee and made an iron-on with a Camp Half-Blood logo.  This was a total hit with 5th and 6th grade. 

Wednesday: Veruca Salt from Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by Roald Dahl

One of my favorite villains. This outfit is one I threw together from things I already had in my closet.  I made the Peter Pan necklace deal from black ribbon and leftover white leather scraps and a bit of necklace chain.  The chocolate bar has a paper cover over it to make it more authentic looking. 

Thursday: The Paper Bag Princess by Robert Munsch 

I bought lawn bags at Home Depot and turned one inside out.  More challenging than you would think!  And I just cut some holes and added a rope belt.  The headband is just a dollar store thing with a tiny yellow card stock crown hot-glued on.  Again, simple but effective!

Friday: Mrs. Frizzle from The Magic School Bus Series by Joanna Cole

This took some work, I'll not lie.  I looked everywhere for the right dress.  I finally ended up finding a simple blue collar dress that I added felt letters and felt planets and stars onto.  I even sewed onto my shoulder a plastic chameleon to be "Liz." I added some felt star earrings and star clips to my shoes to finish off the look.  And I ordered this goofy school bus bag for kicks.

I hope that helped to inspire any of you readers that have something similar at your school!  The kids really enjoyed it and isn't that the whole reason we do what we do?  Maybe years from now, my students will remember me as that wacky librarian that really likes to read! 

16 June 2013

We Love You

Tim, you are a most excellent daddy to these three little buggers. I hope they appreciate you as much as I do!  I love you, babe.  Hope you had a special Father's Day.  You are a special person to us.

09 May 2013

Crabby the Crab

Oz has a preschool program tonight where his class will be performing songs for the sea. Cute, eh? Well I've know about it for a week, but somehow things get left till last minute... You know how it goes. 

Anyway, I had a thrifted red hoodie and loads of felt, so last night Tim and I went to work. We glued a lighter shade of red felt to the front for a "crab shell underbelly." And then Tim drew out a claw template on some felt and I hot-glued the edges to make some claw mittens. I got some ping-pong balls and a sharpie to make eyes and just attached them with hot glue to red plastic straws (with a pipe cleaner threaded through for added strength). Then I glued the straws to a piece of felt for a base and then glued that felt to the hoodie. Success! 

Now, hopefully my little crab will sing. Cross your fingers, everybody.

21 March 2013

A Little More Henry

Since I am still not on the ball with posting ANY birth pictures yet, I did want to go ahead and post the birth announcement I just made.  (Yes, I know he is already 2+ months old now.  I am trying to get my act together. Three boys.  It's totally kicking my butt.) While I'm at it, here are a couple more Henry pics.  He is really cute.  I just wish he knew how to sleep.

The panda is the gift the boys picked out to be Henry's lovey.  It is what they gave Henry at the hospital.  And the mustache soother comes from Henry's incredible Auntie and Uncle in New York.  (We miss them like crazy.) 

So, without further ado, here is the announcement. Enjoy. (click on it to see it bigger...)

Thanks for reading!

20 March 2013

Hey there, March.

I guess I am destined to do a monthly photo post... I just have had the hardest time finding time to get much more than that done!  Ha!  I wonder why?!?  Anyway, Henry is now 2 months.  That is cause for celebration.  Wanna see our two month picture party? We had a cowboy theme this time and Tim made some yummy chocolate oatmeal no-bake cookies (his personal favorite).  Happy birthday, my sweet baboo.

Thanks for reading!

17 March 2013

St. Patty's Day

I have one cute little fellow.  Anyway, "firsts" are big deals in our household, so here are some sweet Henry pictures celebrating his very first St. Patrick's Day.  My cute little leprechaun...

Thanks for reading!

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