A Tale of Two Pages

Books, life, motherhood, and more!

Winter Kids BOOK GIVEAWAY! — 2018-12-07

Winter Kids BOOK GIVEAWAY!

Every now and again, we need to do a giveaway. What better way to start than with a kids book giveaway. I have a copy of The Land of Stories: Beyond the Kingdom (hardcover) up for grabs! Do you want to win this copy!? Keep reading to find out more!

Most of ya’ll know by now, that I am a huge reader. But I want to encourage kids to read more as well. I have two littles that are starting to get more into reading, but it was a push there for a bit. They are more like their dad, in that reading is not first on their list of “fun activities,” but still one that I think needs to be nurtured. By sharing books with my kids, and showing them the adventures that are awaiting between the pages of books, they are slowly drawing more and more into “reading can be fun” frame of mind.

I am going to make this super easy to enter! To enter the giveaway:

  1. Drop a comment on the blog, and tell me why you want to win or read this book!
  2. Tweet or put a message on social media and TAG ME! duchessofreadin on Twitter, and A Tale Of Two Pages on Facebook.
  3. Share this blog post!

Super easy right??

This contest will run through midnight EST on 14 December 2018.

Land of Stories: Beyond the Kingdom

 

Back To School Is Here! — 2018-09-16

Back To School Is Here!

The day has finally arrived, the dreaded back to school. I got the boy’s curriculum in the mail this past week. We have been doing shorter days as all of their schoolwork had not yet arrived. But now, it is here, and we are ready to kick off another school year. Summer was fun while it lasted, but to be honest, I am very ready to get back to a decent schedule. We have been fighting the dreaded monster known as boredom for a few weeks now.

I don’t know about yall, but I hate it when my kids spend to much time on electronics. Everything we do now has something electronic involved. My kids have decided that they love to play Minecraft, and a few other games as well. However, it is starting to detract from other things that need to be done. My house is needing to be cleaned, they have chores that are falling by the wayside, and there are little things that I could use a helping hand with.

Mom Frustration

I do not mind for them to have a little time to play their games, but I am tired of not having their help when I need it. How do we combat this? I want them to be successful and have considered putting them into coding classes online, but then I add more time that they are online. ARGH! It is very frustrating to figure out! For the past week, they have been begging to have an older computer that we have so they can play their games together.

We are currently working on building a schedule that will tie in their game time. I am wanting to limit the time that they have to 1.5 hours maximum for a day. However, I feel as though that is still a bit much, but if they get their school work done, I suppose that they could play and still learn at the same time.

School Work and Downfalls 

Part of the schoolwork we are doing this year is online. We are using Khan Academy for math. I really dislike math, so for me to try to teach it is not going well. There are things that I excel in. History, English, and Writing – we are good to go. But science and math I struggle a bit more. Science, I feel as though I am learning right alongside them, it has been so long since I have these classes! I still love learning, and it has been fun to rediscover old knowledge and share new things with them.

But here is my downfall – I work from home. I love working from home. Sometimes being able to take the time that we need fo school and working can be a bit difficult. But it is time to get our school year started and see how we fair this year. I am very excited to get started, and to see what these boys are going to accomplish!

Special Projects

So each year, I have the boys work a special history project. Before we hit the back to school mode, we select a topic and they work on learning more about it. One is going to do Ancient Egypt and the other wants to focus on the Civil War. Both of those are super broad subjects, so we are going to try and focus the scope a little bit and then see what we can learn this year. As a history teacher, I love both of these subjects, so I am very excited to help my kids learn more about these fascinating subjects. I am already putting documentaries on our saved list, and finding books that we can dive into together to learn more about these fun subjects.

For those of you homeschooling, share what projects you work on!

A Little More Summer Reading For Kids — 2018-08-06

A Little More Summer Reading For Kids

Good day, dear readers! Summer is winding down, but there is still more time to get some reading in before school really starts back into full swing. While we enjoy these last few days, why not spend some time reading some fun little books, and learn a little more too!

If you are planning to take a road trip any time in the future, check out the book I Spy The 50 States by Sharon Rosart:

This book is fun and one that can help keep kids occupied in the car. While you are driving through many different states, there are things that they can search for. Forget taking electronics and other items to keep kids busy. This book is full of little facts and fun snippets of information. Kids will enjoy searching for the items on their list as you travel through different areas. Fun places to stop, find and more!

Available now!!

Anne Frank by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Anne Frank is one of the saddest stories to come out of the Holocaust.  A young girl who wanted a better world, and who lived in secret. After her family was discovered and sent to the concentration camps, her father was the only one who came out alive after the war. The rest of the family was lost. Her father published the diary so that the rest of the world could read her story.

This book has a great timeline at the back. This is perfect for beginning readers!

Available now!

 

Mother Teresa by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Mother Teresa is a well-known figure in the world, however, many do not know where she got her start.

In this book, kids will get a short look at the life of Mother Teresa, and how she got her start in the world, becoming one of the most well-known nuns in the modern age. Great for beginning readers and those who are wanting a jumping off point for learning more about Mother Teresa.

Available now!

 

Jane Austen by Isabel Sanchez Vegara

Jane Austen is a well-known author. This little book gives beginning readers a look into the life of Jane Austen, and how her books really got started.

Great for beginning readers and those who love Jane Austen! Available now.

 

Get out and get some more reading in this summer! If you read these books, let me know what you think of them! My boys and I enjoyed going through these together, and my youngest was excited that he could read them on his own.

Stay tuned for more fantastic reviews…

 

 

A to Z Mysteries: The Missing Mummy ~A Book Review~ — 2018-06-15

A to Z Mysteries: The Missing Mummy ~A Book Review~

Hey all! I have a  quick and short review to share with you today!  If you are looking for a fun, quick and easy read for your kids this summer, check out these books! I listened to The Missing Mummy through Scribd, and it took me less than an hour to listen through.

Review

Three friends are looking forward to some fun at the museum during the week. The first item up is Mummy Monday. But while the professor is showing them the mummies, someone steals one of the mummies out of the case! The three friends stumble upon a few clues and work to help the police solve the mystery.

If your child is learning to read on their own, or just looking for some summer books, then you need to check these out! My boys and I will be finding these books at the library and working through them together.

I cannot tell you how excited I am to have come across these books! I have been searching for something that my son can read through this summer that is a little outside his comfort zone. These are super simple, the words are small enough that beginning readers can easily read, and more advanced readers will be sucked into the mystery aspect quickly. Perfect for out loud reading before bed, or quiet time in the afternoons.

Author: Ron Roy

Let me know what ya’ll think of these books! Share your favorites with me.

Life Flying By… — 2018-04-22

Life Flying By…

April has been flying by, and there are days I wonder if I am even noting the passing days. This last week was one that really pushed me to the brink of binge-eating all the chocolate in the house!

It started on Monday. Monday’s are rough anyway, but ya know, sometimes you have to shake things up and make them REALLY bad. Anyway, I woke up to no internet – and several deadlines staring me in the face. I spent the next two hours frantically trying to figure out what in the world was going on, then calling the provider to see if they could figure it out. I ended up with a technician at my house – on a rush job. Tuesday – same story – no internet, technician scheduled…. got internet, only to lose it again while I was in the middle of meeting. Then I spent the next almost two hours on the phone to get internet working again, to have the base where we are living completely lose power. GO FIGURE. At this point, I had to laugh. It was either that or break down into tears. So laughter won out – and I was trying to keep a positive outlook. The provider we have decided to send out ANOTHER technician, and see if they could get things figured out. Well – I guess we have somewhat figured out what is causing the issue, but we are going to see how long this solution lasts.

I am not a downer – I try to see the positive on everything, but I felt as though this week pushed me to the point of breaking. Deadlines, kids, homeschooling, and life in general has ways to kick you, and make you question everything. I love my kids – so there are no worries there.

As a parent, I worry constantly about finding the “niches” that my kids need to get ahead. I know where our weak points are, and where they struggle. There are days that I struggle to discover how I can really help move them forward. I do not want to put them back into public school. We just have to discover the perfect curriculum that will work for them. I have considered writing my own, and putting my own information together. Of course, I am going to have to buy the math and science, those are NOT my strong points at all. I am okay with buying those. I just want the rest of what we are doing to be something that they are going to mostly enjoy. Why must that be so hard!?

There are going to be some long and trying days ahead. I am going to be working on laying out a better plan, and I look forward to sharing those with you as we move forward. For any homeschooling families out there – what are you looking for? What do you love using, and what would you change?

Days come and go.. and there are going to be some fantastic ones ahead, and there will be some not so great ones ahead. I will take each day as it comes and look forward to bigger things ahead!

What is one thing that you would like to accomplish this year?

Gasping For Air.. — 2018-03-29

Gasping For Air..

Oh. My. Goodness. I am not even going to lie! It might only be Wednesday night, but this week has been BUSY! As a home school mom, this time of year always makes me panic just a little bit. March is almost over, which means we only have a few more months of school…. and there are days I wonder if we will ever finish everything I set out for us to accomplish. Then I have to sit back and remind myself – we home school. We CAN do this!

Since I am completely honest, I am just going to lay it out. I absolutely KNOW that we will finish. There are days that I love home schooling, there are days I like it, and there are days that loathe it – with every single fiber in my being. Those are the days that we fight, struggle, and agonize over every single thing that has to be done. But – then we have days like today, where they zip through whatever I put in front of them. I don’t get it. They know the information, they have all the information at their fingertips, but there at times they do not want to utilize the lessons in front of them. While they grow and mature, I know that we are going to see days like this, but I still hope that as they mature a bit more the love of learning grows with them.

Learning is something that we do our entire lives. I love it. Learning and gaining more knowledge is never ending – a fountain of wealth. We can never hope to know it all, but yet we keep attempting to garner whatever we can. With that being said, adults learn more through books. I bet you didn’t see that coming – me throwing books in here! Ya’ll should know by now the love I have for written words. Which brings me to the title of this blog – gasping for air.

I have a mountain of books sitting here – which is great for ya’ll, cause there are some fantastic ones coming your way. I sit here at times and wonder what in the world I have gotten myself into. Reading is an escape for me. A way to wander into worlds unknown to me, grand adventures, and soul ripping mysteries. There are times that it is hard for me to pull away from them to get anything else done. I do not mean that I neglect my kids – but the housework will often slide for “just one more chapter.” Haha! It is one of the things that I have on my to do list to tackle for the weekend – clean through my entire house, deep clean and declutter, and gain some peace of mind back. Clutter to me is equivalent to stress. Messes stress me out more than I put into words.

Until the next one – “Today A Reader, Tomorrow A Leader” Margaret Fuller

 

 

Late Night Rambles.. — 2018-02-24

Late Night Rambles..

What a week it has been! I have been reading like mad, when I am not working. I have finished eight of the Amelia Peabody (written by Elizabeth Peters) books, and a few other books that are fixing to be released soon. Total this year, I have finished 27 books.  My goal is 100 books, but who knows, I might be able to leap over that number!

Sleep has lately been eluding me. It leaves more time for reading, but lack of sleep makes it frustrating for functioning – especially with children! My son has lately been taking more after my night owl habits, and that is in itself can be exasperating. This child decided to test my knowledge of the Civil War last night, and asking all sorts of questions that I had to really give some thought before answering. I am thankful that they are showing an interest in history, but I really wish they would not wait until midnight to think of all the questions that “really really” need answers before they can go to sleep. My other son is wrapped up in Ancient Egypt this year. I have always loved Egyptian history, and being able to share the knowledge, the books, and art. I am hoping to reign them in a little more with the study of a few more ancient civilizations in the fall.

I have been grappling with the idea of what to do with these kiddos in the fall. I home-school, but we have been finding that the books are boring. Do not get me wrong, they have a lot of great information, and they are learning – but boys need more hands on busy work. I am looking into writing my own curriculum, and building my own studies for them to follow. They are smart kids (what parents always say) but building on the strengths and interests that they have will hopefully propel us forward at a better pace.  As we move ahead, I will notate how we do on here. It shall be an interesting time and hopefully something that we will enjoy so much more than what we are using now.

Since sleep is not sure to come any time soon, I think that I shall start a new book, and hopefully have a couple of reviews up here for you all soon! There are some great books that are due to be released this year! I look forward to sharing some of them with you!

What reading adventures are you undertaking?

 

Another New Adventure — 2018-02-17

Another New Adventure

I am so excited for another new journey! I have been blogging over at booklikes.com for the past several months, but I wanted to reach a broader audience. I like to write, and I enjoy sharing all sorts of things with those around me!

As I start out into the new adventure, I look forward to building an audience – and growing together! Blogging is a great way to make and create new links, friends, and circles.

While you are here, you are going to see a little of everything! Like I said, I enjoy sharing – and one of the best things to share are books. Books are miniature vacations from the comfort of your couch. Whether you are looking for terror, laughter, escape…. the list goes on. Recipes, randomness from life, and more… it will all be shown here! Stick around and join me for this journey!

I warn you now – I have kids. My kids enjoy causing me mini heart attacks, but I enjoy watching their characters emerging as they grow. I have one that is a little saucy (okay, very saucy), and he has so mastered the art of sarcasm, I often wonder what in the world will pop out of his mouth next. My oldest is a bit more cautious, but he still has his own personality, and he often leaves me in laughter. Being a mother has been a very exciting time, trying at moments – but they melt my heart.

I enjoy crafting, outdoor activities, and a myriad of other things. Our lives are full, and we live it to the fullest. Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, and so much more – we keep on our toes! I look forward to sharing it with you here! Welcome to you all!