***INTERNATIONAL CHILDREN’S BOOK GIVEAWAY*** Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All) {Lori Orlinsky}

Oh do I have an adorable book to give away today!

As I said on Instagram, Lori Orlinsky’s book was delivered to our house at the PERFECT time.  It was like a gift from the heavens above on that dreadful day, lol.  I’m so excited to be hosting an international giveaway for it today!

Full disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book to read and review for my blog.  All opinions are my own.

Giveaway details will be given at the bottom of this post!

I absolutely love this book and so do my kids.  It’s adorable!  The pictures are so cute.  One thing that I am very particular about is how the rhyming and the flow of a children’s book is.  As a former teacher (and now as a mother) reading books aloud is part of my everyday life.  It is so much more enjoyable for both my kids and myself if the rhyming and overall flow of the words is smooth…and this book is a joy to read.

The message of this book is beautiful.  Acceptance of things that cannot be changed is one of the most challenging things for a child to understand.  This book is a beautiful way to help a child understand that acceptance.

I also appreciate that this book finds the “silver lining” in the situation by highlighting all of the positive aspects of being on shorter side.  This is a tactic that I often try to teach my own kids when faced with any problem.  Always looking for the positive aspects of the situation and learning to “turn the situation around” are always such hard concepts to teach.  This book does such a lovely job and sets such a perfect example of how to do this!

I would have loved a copy of this in my classroom when I was a teacher and it would have been one of my favorite read alouds.  Teaching tolerance and social awareness of accepting the differences in others is something that every teacher pursues and this book would have led to such wonderful classroom discussions.  Teachers, your classrooms need a copy of this book!

Fun Height Fact:  I’m 5’1…and my husband is 6’3!

A Conversation with Lori Orlinsky, In Her Own Words:

How did you create the idea for your book?

When my daughter Hayley was 3, she told me she didn’t want to go to school anymore because she was the shortest kid in her preschool class. It turns out, the teachers hung a growth chart on the wall, and while all of Hayley’s friends were at the top and middle of the chart, Hayley’s name was at the bottom, with no other names in sight.  For the first time in her 3 years of life, I saw my outgoing, confident girl feel a sense of shame about the way she looked. I tried to find a book with a short heroine in which she could relate to, but no book on the topic existed, until I wrote “Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All).”

What audience would be most interested in your book?

The book is geared towards babies through elementary school aged children. Despite the title, “Being Small” it isn’t just for short kids – there are wonderful messages in the book about self-confidence, which every child needs to hear in a world filled with bullying. Additionally, the book is also designed to give all children perspective on the power of their words. Told in rhyme, the topics in the book are more approachable, often leading to post-book discussions about self-acceptance and how to recognize and prevent bullying behavior.

Where can your book be purchased?
Online at Amazon, Barnes & Noble and Books-a-Million. It is also available in select Barnes & Noble locations.

Use 3 adjectives to describe your book:

Empowering, inspiring, sweet

Any additional information that you would like to provide about you or your book:

Hayley is now 6 years-old and just graduated from Kindergarten. I truly believe the book has helped her embrace being short. Just last week, we went to the playground, and she was excited to show me the monkey bar flips that only she could do because of her height. I hope this book will make a difference in the lives of other children, too. It is a perfect read for anyone who has ever felt different.

“Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All)” was recently named a Gold Award Recipient of the 2019 Mom’s Choice Awards in the children’s book category. Additionally, the book is a Readers’ Favorite 5-Star Recipient

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***

Do you have a special child in your life who would benefit from learning the beautiful messages taught in this book?
I have 1 autographed and dedicated copy of Being Small (Isn’t So Bad After All) to give away! 
If you are located in the US, the hard copy will be mailed to you and if you are located internationally an e-copy will be emailed to you!  

To be entered, please complete these 2 simple steps:

1. Make sure that you are following and/or subscribed to my blog

2. Leave a comment below telling me how tall you are!

**You must complete BOTH of these steps to be eligible for the giveaway and you must complete them here on my blog (not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)**

Giveaway will close tomorrow (Thursday) at 4:00 pm CDT and the winner will be randomly chosen and announced in Friday’s blog post (6/28/19).

Make sure you check the blog on Friday to see if you’ve won (you will have 48 hours from the time I post the winner to email me your mailing address.  If I don’t hear from you within 48 hours, I will pick a new winner).

If you already follow and/or subscribe to my blog, you are still eligible…just leave a comment below to be entered 🙂

Good luck!  Can’t wait to read your comments!

8 Ways You Can Help Support Book Coffee Happy:

1. Subscribe with your email address to my blog (scroll all the way to the bottom of this page on mobile devices OR check the top right of this screen to enter your email address)

2. If you already have a blog, please “follow” mine

3. “Like” my Facebook page (and please comment on, “like”, and share my posts)

4. Follow me on Instagram

5. Follow me on Twitter

6. Subscribe to my YouTube channel

7. Clicking and buying products through my Amazon Affiliate links.  The cost to you is exactly the same and I receive a tiny commission off of your purchases.

8. Leaving a positive review on my Facebook page

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

Children’s Book Review: We’re All Wonders {R.J. Palacio}

As the PTO Co-President of my daughter’s elementary school, I have lots of responsibilities. Clearly helping with the Scholastic Book Fair is one of the most fun! Being surrounded by books and helping children discover new favorites?  LOVE.

As I was walking around and inspecting all of the books, I came across this little gem. I had no idea that R.J. Palacio had written a children’s book based on her young adult  novel, Wonder. It’s not a secret that I absolutely LOVED reading Wonder (read my review here)! I immediately sat down on the floor of the book fair to read this book to my 3 year old son (AKA my book fair volunteer sidekick).

Synopsis from Goodreads:

The unforgettable bestseller Wonder has inspired a nationwide movement to Choose Kind. Now parents and educators can introduce the importance of choosing kind to younger readers with this gorgeous picture book, featuring Auggie and Daisy on an original adventure, written and illustrated by R. J. Palacio.
 
Over 5 million people have fallen in love with Wonder and have joined the movement to Choose Kind. Now younger readers can meet Auggie Pullman, an ordinary boy with an extraordinary face, and his beloved dog, Daisy.

Countless fans have asked R. J. Palacio to write a book for younger readers. With We’re All Wonders, she makes her picture-book debut as both author and artist, with a spare, powerful text and striking, richly imagined illustrations. Palacio shows readers what it’s like to live in Auggie’s world—a world in which he feels like any other kid, but he’s not always seen that way.

We’re All Wonders may be Auggie’s story, but it taps into every child’s longing to belong, and to be seen for who they truly are. It’s the perfect way for families and educators to talk about empathy and kindness with young children.

My Thoughts:

(Disclaimer: I will never post spoilers in my reviews HOWEVER the comment section is completely fair game to discuss any and all specifics including spoilers)

5 Stars

This is one beautifully written children’s book.  It delivers the same beautiful message of acceptance that Wonder does but at an elementary school level.  I loved everything about this book from the beautiful message it delivers to the beautiful words and pictures it contains.  This book is perfection and would make such a wonderful addition to any child’s bookshelf or any classroom library.  Looking to buy a gift for a child or a teacher?  Here it is.

Bottom Line:

Every child and every teacher should have a copy of this book on their bookshelves.  And read it often.

Did you read this book?  What did you think?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments below!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:30! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader, please be sure to introduce yourself!  I can’t wait to meet you and your little ones. 🙂

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

***CHILDREN’S BOOK GIVEAWAY (2 Copies)*** Ben’s Adventures: A Day at the Beach {Elizabeth Gerlach}

Full disclosure: I was sent a copy of this book to read and review for my blog.  All opinions are my own. This post contains Amazon affiliate links.

Giveaway details will be given at the bottom of this post!

As soon as I finished reading this book with my children, I sent Elizabeth Gerlach an email which contained only 1 sentence:

“This might just be one of the most beautiful books I have ever read.”

Description from Amazon:

Awarded 5-stars from both Reader’s Favorite and the award-winning “Read With Your Kids” podcast, as well as a Certified Great Read.

Meet young Benjamin who takes us on an inspiring & fun adventure to the beach in this first book in the Ben’s Adventures series. You’ll smile and be inspired as you follow Ben into his imagination and he shows us that all kids can play and dream.
 
In his first adventure, Ben imagines a perfect beach day where he builds sand castles, flies kites, plays with crabs and enjoys special moments with his family. Ben loves the sun on his face and the wind in his hair. He can dream, he can play, and he can interact and have meaningful experiences. Ben smiles, and you will too.

“Let’s build a sandcastle”, I say to my friend.
He says, “Sounds good.”
And we make our plan.
With one tower built,and two more to go.
I kick and laugh and then think “Oh No!”

A Great Book for Introducing Special Needs or Disability to Young Children Ben’s Adventures provides a simple and subtle way to introduce special needs and disability to your child. It can easily open the discussion for what disability means. Why does someone need a wheelchair? If someone’s in a wheelchair, can they still play with me? It will help young minds recognize and understand differences among us and ACCEPT those differences. And the main character Benjamin will reinforce the important take-away that just because someone might be different or need assistance, he/she is still a kid, can be a friend, and can enjoy kids’ play.

Teach Empathy, Inclusion and Acceptance from an Early Age Kids will have as many (if not more) similarities than they have noticeable differences.It’s our job as parents to talk about these issues with our kids. Understanding and accepting others throughout our lives is learned in childhood.

Ben is a young triplet brother that shows all kids can play & dream. Ben’s Adventures was inspired by the author’s son Benjamin who had cerebral palsy. Despite Ben’s challenges in life, he smiled everyday. It’s a wonderful message that is important for typical families AND those with special needs. And it provides a good introduction of disability for any family. In writing it, Gerlach wanted to show that all kids are capable and able to do great (or even simple) things.

My Thoughts:

I absolutely, positively love this book.  So much.

The story itself is beautiful, the pictures are adorable, and the discussion that it created between my 7 year old daughter and I after we finished reading was amazing.  We discussed differences in people and even though someone might not always be able to communicate in the same way that you do…they still have feelings, thoughts, and dreams.  It was an amazing and inspiring discussion and this book was a perfect catalyst to discuss such an important topic.

It would also be a wonderful book for a classroom!  The discussions and writing assignments that could follow would be endless.  If you have any teachers in your life, their classroom would greatly benefit from this book.

I love, love, love this special book.  In fact, it’s one of my favorite books that I’ve ever reviewed on my blog.

A Conversation with Elizabeth Gerlach, in Her Own Words:

Briefly give a description of your book:

Ben’s Adventures is about a young triplet brother who has cerebral palsy. He loves his family/friends, creating memories and taking adventures! He’s in a wheelchair but shows that ALL kids can play & dream and create meaningful connections and memories.

In this first book, Ben takes us to the beach where he plays with crabs, builds sandcastles and flies with kites.

How did you create the idea for your book?

It’s inspired by my triplet son Benjamin. Ben passed away from a serious illness in 2016 at almost 4 years old. Despite his/our challenges, he always had a smile on his face and laughed quite a bit. As a family, we loved to have different experiences and adventures and just spend time together. I wanted to show that even though a child might have additional needs, it doesn’t mean they can’t enjoy ‘kid things’ and have fun. And I wanted to represent disability in a children’s book by creating a main character who uses a wheelchair.

What audience would be most interested in your book?

Ben’s Adventures is probably most suited for Preschool through second grade. It’s a good message for any child/family (not just one with additional needs). I’ve been told it helps to introduce the concept of disability with kids that aren’t yet familiar. Families have been able to have meaningful conversations around the book.

Where can your book be purchased?

Signed/Dedicated copies are available on my website here: www.Bens-Adventures.com

But it’s also available on Amazon in both Hard Cover and Kindle format.

https://www.amazon.com/Bens-Adventures-Day-at-Beach/dp/173270340X/

Use 3 adjectives to describe your book:

Inspirational

Sweet

Touching

Any additional information that you would like to provide about you or your book:

Ben’s Adventures just received a 5-star review from Readers’ Favorite and has average 5 star review on Amazon.

As a family, to honor Benjamin, we established the Ben Smiles Memorial Foundation to purchase switch-adapted toys and other devices to kids with motor challenges. www.BenSmiles.org

***GIVEAWAY DETAILS***

I have 2 copies of Ben’s Adventures: A Day at the Beach to give away (US only for this giveaway)! 
Winners will receive an autographed and dedicated copy of Ben’s Adventures: A Day at the Beach

To be entered, please complete these 2 simple steps:

1. Follow and/or subscribe to my blog

2. Leave a comment below telling the first name of the person you would have the author write the dedication inside the cover to if you are chosen to win a copy

**You must complete both of these steps to be eligible for the giveaway and you must complete them here on my blog (not on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram)**

Giveaway will end Friday morning at 6:00 CDT and the winner will be randomly chosen and announced in Friday morning’s blog post.

Make sure you check back on Friday to see if you’ve won (you will have 48 hours from the time I post the winner to email me your mailing address.  If I don’t hear from you within 48 hours, I will pick a new winner).

If you already follow and/or subscribe to my blog, you are still eligible…just leave a comment below to be entered 🙂

Good luck!  Can’t wait to read your comments!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

Book Reviews: Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls (Books 1 and 2) {Elena Favilli and Francesca Cavallo}

Today is my daughter’s 7th birthday.  7!?!?  How is that even possible? Where does time  even GO when you’re a parent?

She’s smart, beautiful, sweet, hilarious, and amazing.  I am so lucky that she’s mine 🙂 She has been counting down to this day since her birthday last year.

She requested to have her hair curled for her special day so I ordered a curling iron online and we had a trial run last week:

She thinks it’s super cool that I have a blog.  She’s always talking about it and now wants a blog of her own.  She wants to name it “iPad Candy Happy” (get it???)  I told you she’s hilarious 🙂

We have LOTS of celebrating to do over the weekend including a fun adventure and awesome dinner tonight and a pizza party with her friends tomorrow.

In honor of her birthday, I thought I would review 2 of her all time favorite books:

rebelgirls

Synopsis:

Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is a children’s book packed with 100 BEDTIME STORIES about the life of 100 EXTRAORDINARY WOMEN from the past and the present, illustrated by 60 FEMALE ARTISTS from all over the world. Each woman’s story is written in the style of a fairy tale. Each story has a full page, full color portrait that captures the spirit of the portrayed hero. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls is also the MOST CROWDFUNDED ORIGINAL BOOK IN HISTORY.

rebelgirls2

Synopsis:

Good Night Stories For Rebel Girls 2 is the sequel to the sensational New York Times bestseller, and the most crowdfunded book of all times. The authors, Francesca Cavallo and Elena Favilli, will take you and your kids on an empowering journey through 100 new bedtime stories, featuring the adventures of extraordinary women from Nefertiti to Beyoncé. The unique narrative style of “Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls” transforms each biography into a fairy-tale, filling the readers with wonder and with a burning curiosity to know more about each hero. Good Night Stories for Rebel Girls 2 boasts a brand new graphic design, a glossary and 100 incredible new portraits created by the best female artists of our time. “This amazing book shows girls they can be anything they want.” – Melinda Gates “Essential reading for girls and indeed boys; children who read this at bedtime are guaranteed some big and inspirational dreams.” – Fiona Noble, The Guardian “The anti-princess book teaching girls to rebel.” – Georgina Rannard, BBC News

My Thoughts:

My daughter absolutely LOVES these books.  My husband was the one to read them with her.  Each night before bed, they would read a few stories together.  My daughter couldn’t WAIT to hear these each night!  I read a few of them with her when he was unable and I was impressed with the variety of well known woman and their accomplishments that these books focused on.

There are SO many lessons taught in these books…they teach tolerance, determination, hard work, dedication, etc. all taught from the true stories of successful women.  These books are inspiring on so many levels.  As an added bonus…through the stories, my daughter even learned bits of history!

My husband absolutely loved reading these with her and it was wonderful bonding for them.  When I told him that I was reviewing them today, his exact words were, “I love those books!”

These books make such amazing gifts.  My daughter received the first one as a gift from her aunt, uncle, and cousins.  Her aunt wrote such a beautiful message on the inside cover about how my daughter is capable of great things, they can’t wait to see all that she will do, and that the stories of the women in this book should be a reminder to her of all that she can achieve.  Such an inspirational message was the perfect inscription.

As soon as they finished reading the first book, my husband immediately preordered the second and it arrived as soon as it was released.  They were both so excited to start reading it that night!

These books will continue to hold a special place on her bookshelf for a very, very long time.

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO MY LITTLE GIRL!  I’m trying hard to protect our privacy by not saying her name 🙂  I love you more than you will ever know…Let the celebrating BEGIN!

Xo,

Mommy (Jenny)

Do your children own these books?  Do they love them?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments.

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page ,  follow me on Twitter, and follow me on Instagram!

Local friends, I run a storytime every Tuesday and Friday at Whimsy Cafe in Buffalo Grove, Illinois from 10:00-10:45! Bring your kids (6 months-5 years) for stories, songs, and lots of fun. Price is included in your child’s admission, no need to sign up. If you are a blog reader, please be sure to introduce yourself!  I can’t wait to meet you and your little ones. 🙂

Click the image below to order the book through my Amazon affiliate link.  When you order through this link, I receive a tiny commission. Thank you for your support, Xo

**Children’s Book GIVEAWAY** (3 Winners)! A Bag for Santa {Kendra Esbrook}

Happy Hump Day, Friends!

I hope you are having a great week.  We are slowly still getting back into routine after having almost a week off of school for Thanksgiving Break and an unexpected (but so glorious) snow day!

The snow is slowly starting to melt and it’s making me sad.  I’m already ready for another huge snowstorm!  I just love winter so much.  Everything is so breathtakingly beautiful here right now, I could never live in a place that didn’t get snow!

What I DON’T love is the fact that my town apparently has some new kind of fancy LED stoplights and they don’t melt the snow when they are covered (insert face plant emoji here).  I live in a large town!  In a suburb of CHICAGO!  This is not the first time we’ve had snow in this area…It’s insane. There have been tons of car accidents over the past few days while the fire department is apparently trying to manually clear them off.  How crazy is that?!  It’s been scary to drive around here…but not scary enough that I was prevented from picking up Chinese food for dinner last night.  #priorities #favoritefood

I have such a great giveaway for you today!  But first..Day 2 of the Quotes Challenge:

3 Days 3 Quotes Challenge

Thank you so much Facing the Story for nominating me to take part in the 3 Days, 3 Quotes Challenge! Here are the rules:

RULES:

  • Thank the person who nominated you.
  • Post one quote per day for three days.
  • Nominate three blogs per day to take part in this challenge.

I don’t post every single day but I am taking part in this for 3 consecutive blog posts. You can read my favorite quote of all time that I posted on Day 1 here: SNOW, My Favorite Quote, and a Book Review: Little Fires Everywhere {Celeste Ng}

And for Day 2, here’s my favorite quote that perfectly sums up the relationship between my 3 best friends and I:

“Here’s to the nights that turned into mornings with the friends that turned into family”

There isn’t a better quote to describe us!  I’ve actually been saying this quote to them for years.  Love you, girls (you can read more about our special relationship here: 4 Best Friends, 1 Alma Mater)

I tag:

Mud and Stars

Asha-A Cat, A Book, and a Cup of Tea

Cennins Book Reviews

And now…a GIVEAWAY!!!

FullSizeRender (26)

I absolutely LOVE this book.  Like…really love.  The message behind it basically is for kids to leave toys they no longer play with in a bag for Santa.  Santa’s elves can fix them up to be like new again and can give them to other kids so they can have presents on Christmas.  Santa takes the toys but leaves the bag behind so kids can fill it up year after year.

Each book comes with this awesome (large) bag for children to fill with toys that they no longer play with and can leave for Santa:

IMG_3102

This would be a perfect book for any parent, grandparent, or teacher.  As a former teacher myself, I can easily imagine the wonderful class discussion about charity and generosity that could occur after reading this aloud.  My students would have loved this book!

As a fun bonus…check out the adorable way this book and bag were shipped to me!  When I opened my mailbox, I was greeted by the cutest and most festive packaging.  If you win this giveaway, yours will also be shipped from the author in this adorable packaging!  If you don’t have children at your house, this can be shipped to another address where a child can be greeted with this adorable package.  I couldn’t wait to rip it open!

IMG_3101

It’s such a cute book with such an important message.  Teaching children about the importance of charity is a year round lesson but especially during the holiday season.  The illustrations are wonderful, the rhyming is wonderful, everything about this book is wonderful.  I absolutely loved reading it.  The icing on the cake is that a portion of each book sold goes to Toys for Tots.

A Conversation with Kendra Esbrook, in her own words:

Briefly give a description of your book:

Christmas is just around the corner! David and Will are busy making their list for Santa. Suddenly a troublesome thought enters their minds; what if the Elves can’t make all the toys?  The boys have a brilliant idea, one that will help Santa get toys to everyone when the elves are behind.

How did you create the idea for your book?

I’m a stay-at-home mom who wanted a better tradition than Elf on the Shelf. I wanted my kids to understand the joy of giving. So when I saw all the personalized bags from Santa to the kids being sold I asked my friend to make us one from the kids to Santa, and we started leaving old toys for him. I couldn’t believe no one else had written about it yet, so I did!

What audience would be most interested in your book?

Anyone who believes in Christmas magic.

Where can your book be purchased?

Amazing page to come… for now just here:

 

Use 3 adjectives to describe your book:

Heartwarming, merry, inspirational

***GIVEAWAY***

Would you like a chance to win a copy of this adorable story?

I have THREE copies of A Bag for Santa to give away!  THREE!

The autographed books will be mailed directly to the winners (US only for this giveaway).  To be entered, please complete these 2 simple steps:

1. Follow and/or subscribe to my blog

2. Leave a comment below telling me your favorite thing about the holiday season

**You must complete both of these steps to be eligible for the giveaway**

Giveaway will end Friday morning at 6:00 CDT and the 3 winners will be randomly chosen and announced in Friday morning’s blog post.

Make sure you check back on Friday to see if you’ve won (you will have 48 hours from the time I post the winners to email me your mailing address.  If I don’t hear from you, I will pick a new winner).

If you already follow and/or subscribe to my blog, you are still eligible…just leave a comment below to be entered 🙂

Good luck!  Can’t wait to read your comments!

It would really help me if you could follow/subscribe to my blog.  Also, please “like” my Facebook page (www.fb.com/bookcoffeehappy),  follow me on Twitter@bookcoffeehappy, and follow me on Instagram (@bookcoffeehappy)!