Summer Reading 2017: June’s End 

It’s the last week of June, and just that like that – we are halfway through summer. We’ve had equal amounts of rain and sun, some days so filled with activities that I haven’t noticed the hours passing by. Perhaps my favorite days, though, have been the ones where we haven’t had much on the calendar. In those moments, the kids have done some simple but amazing things: taken nature walks (painting rocks they found afterwards), flown kites, gone fishing, found a quiet corner to read a new book, and created new games with old toys. I can’t think of anything more satisfying as a parent than seeing them use their imaginations and find beauty in ordinary things.


One of the simple things we have loved doing together is visiting Little Free Libraries. We have one at our local city park that we visit frequently, but we’ve also visited others on day trips and on our cross-country summer vacation to Illinois. What I love most about these little libraries is their variety, not only in books, but also in the colorful, fun way people build and decorate them. My favorite one so far is a repurposed London Telephone Box in my hometown of Bloomington, Illinois.


To find the Little Free Libraries near you, go to: 

https://littlefreelibrary.org/ourmap/

This summer my kids and I have found books in many places: our local library, bookstores, yard sales, coffee shops, a juice bar, little free libraries. Some books we’ve borrowed, others we’ve exchanged (“take one, leave one”), and the rest we’ve purchased at reduced prices with the little pocket money we carry. The best finds are the unexpected ones, and I love seeing the kids reactions at those moments – it’s truly like seeing them in a candy store, but it’s books!

And books, without a doubt, are so much sweeter. 🙂

 

Happy National Poetry Month! Be Inspired.

Unicorn Book of Magic Greeting Card by Trudi Simmonds

Happy National Poetry Month! Throughout April, I hope you notice the light being shone upon poetry where you live, in classrooms, and in the media. I am excited to see the beautiful, inspiring, whimsical & funny poems that this month brings. I will be posting each week with a different kind of poem; my intention is to share both children’s and adult poetry with varying themes and forms. There are so many different ways that poetry can look & feel – and all are worth exploring! Today, I will start with the poetry that first fascinated me & still keeps my heart today – inspirational, magical children’s poetry. As a mother, I can now experience it anew with my children.


My daughter loves art of all kinds. We have bins bulging full of colored pencils, markers, crayons and paints – sketching pads, note pads, papers of all colors, shapes and sizes. Her drawings are often of rainbows, family members, friends, school, playgrounds, animals – real things that she has seen, touched and experienced. People she loves. But lately, her drawings feature magical creatures. Here is her drawing, and my poem for today.

Unicorn

There she stands
beauty, white as snow
cascading mane upon her neck
her satiny purple eyes aglow. 

There she stands
high upon a mountaintop
next to a rainbow
shining in its colourful light.

There she stands
glorious creature of the clouds
holding her head high
proud to be alive and free!

There she stands
a symbol for those who believe
letting those who do
see the magic she beholds.

There she stands
making wishes comes true
and people into believers
for she is 
a Unicorn. 

Copyright Stacie Eirich April 3, 2017

Originally posted March 28, 2016

Seeing her drawing and reading the poem I wrote, I am reminded how children remind us of the magic all around us, if only we allow ourselves to see and believe. Reading, writing, poetry, music – the arts – offer so many ways to enrich our souls and cultivate creativity. I hope that my daughter will always have a love of creating, of dreaming, and mostly that she’ll never stop believing in magic – and in herself.


To celebrate National Poetry Month in April 2016, I published a collection titled Canvas of Imagination: Poems. It includes Unicorn plus 15 other poems I wrote in my childhood. Available on Amazon for $0.99 – I hope it inspires kids & teens to read, write, and seek out more poetry.


On Thursday, April 6th, I’ll be sharing a post celebrating children’s poetry over at Imaginary Garden with Real Toads. Toads is a lovely online community of poets who share their passion for poetry, and this month there will be posts featuring original poems & writing prompts every day. Do go and visit to be inspired!

Thanks for stopping by Space to Dream. Have a wonderful day. 🙂 -Stacie

p.s. Below is a beautiful video, a spoken word poem that expresses the wonder of a child and encourages adults to recapture that wonder. Never stop wondering, imagining, & dreaming! This is the heart of children’s poetry.

Goodreads Giveaway Ending Soon! 


The Goodreads Giveaway for a signed paperback copy of Tiger Kingdom & The Book of Destiny ends this Saturday, Feb 25th. Don’t miss your chance to snag a free copy! Go to this link to enter: 

https://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/221493-tiger-kingdom-the-book-of-destiny

I wish you a wonderful week ahead, and hope that you will share this Goodreads Giveaway with your friends so that many young readers have the chance to win! Thanks for stopping by Space to Dream & have a lovely day. -Stacie 

Photo in this post by: https://www.facebook.com/staceypotterphotography/